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Episode 117 Transcript

Suzie Price: Today I'm speaking with Terri Lonowski about listening, soulful listening, how we can use this skill to connect and be present with others so that we can positively impact others and we can create more meaning on a daily basis. You know, we do a lot of training, and I know I've certainly done it on how to present and speak and share our knowledge and, you know, be a great leader. And one of the biggest skills that we don't often spend enough time on, and I've had quite a few episodes about it because I think it's so important, and of course, I'm always learning how to get better at it myself, is how to really listen. And Terri brings to us information about soulful listening, and you're going to really enjoy the episode. I think it'll be inspiring and I can't wait to share it with you. Michael. Hit it!

[00:00:48] Intro/Outro: Welcome to the Wake Up Eager Workforce podcast, a show designed for leaders, trainers and consultants, who are responsible for employee selection and professional development. Each episode is packed full with insider tips, best practices, expert interviews and inspiration. Please welcome the host to his helping leaders, trainers and consultants everywhere -- Suzie Price.

Suzie Price: Hi there, my name is Suzie Price and you're listening to the Wake Up Eager Workforce podcast, where we cover everything here related to helping you and the employees in your organization build a high commitment, low drama, wake up eager workforce. Bottom line, we want to help leaders make good decisions about their people. We want to help leaders be with their people. We want to help leaders be successful. We want their teams to be successful. We want individuals to be successful, and we want people to be able to use their strength and know their value and wake up eager so that we have wake up eager workforce. We have high performing teams. You know, we all go to work every day. Pretty much everybody's listening to this, goes to work every day. So what is it like? What does it take to go to work and be eager about it, to be involved, to be enthused? That's what we're all about here today. So we're about providing tools and tips and expert interviews for everything related to that. This is episode number 117. The title of today's episode is Soulful Listening -- How to Ignite Untapped Potential in the Workplace and Beyond. We cover three topic areas: 1. why soulful listening matters. What is it? 2. What presence-ing yourself means. So that's presence with an ING presence-ing means and 3. five steps to creating real conversation with anyone. There great steps. It's great information. And we've got a great leader in sharing this in Terri Lonowski.

Suzie Price: Let me tell you a little bit about her background. She has a master's in education. She is the founder of Soulful Listening and she is a heart centered communication visionary with global impact through keynotes, articles, podcasts and more. She really does embody warmth and deep connection, and she tells a story about her grandma Helga, who inspired her and who was really good at presence-ing, you know, so when when she needed her grandma, her grandmama Helga put everything aside and was present with her. And so what does that mean? How do we do that? She has a holistic, five element, soulful listening approach that sets the stage for untapped potential in the workplace and beyond. She has a book that she's working on called Soulful Listening for leaders, and she has a great TEDx talk, which we have linked to. It's gotten hundreds of thousands of listens to and watches on the TEDx talks. You're going to want to watch that. We've got that in the show. Notes. She's a best selling author, past chair of the American Counseling Association, and that represents over 50,000 counselors. She's led nationwide human centered design teams to showcase workforce innovations at the White House and much more. So we have links to her TEDx talk and other material in our show notes, and you can find all of that, as well as a transcript of this episode at, All one word soulful listening. Let's go to the episode now. Terri is so glad to have you on the Wake Up Eager Workforce podcast.

Terri Lonowski: Susie, I am just super excited to be here. We've had a little conversation ahead of time and now I'm ready to dive in deep.

Suzie Price: Listening is a favorite subject of mine, and I love your approach to it. And one of the things you say is one soulful listening conversation has the power to change the trajectory of a person's life, which is a powerful statement. So let's jump right in and talk to us a little bit about soulful listening. What is it?

[00:04:55] Terri Lonowski: What is it? Well, soulful listening is a holistic approach to connecting and communicating on a deeper level that is so needed today. And it was inspired originally by my grandma Helga, who had a way of presence-ing herself, and she was a successful woman. Very well read, very interesting. Had gone through a lot. Twice widowed. Well read and artistic and all of that. And when she would sit down with you and be present with you, I don't know. Aromas were wafting in from the kitchen and she would just set the tone for deep connection, and I felt like it was just the two of us and the rest of the world had disappeared. And so I've taken that with me throughout my entire life and have embedded that in to what is now called soulful listening. And so maybe I should talk about the five different elements of soulful listening.

Suzie Price: Fantastic. Yeah, it was just a vision. Like as you were even describing that, I was like, oh, I'm sitting with Grandma Helga and I can smell something, and you get the way you kind of express it. You could just tell that it was like a bubble, or a special moment, or a special energy that happened that you got swept up in, in a positive way, is what it felt like.

Terri Lonowski: So true, so true. And I came from a from a beginning of great chaos. I lived on the second floor of a stately mansion in a small country town in Nebraska, and it was second floor because the family had turned the first floor into a bustling restaurant with banging and clanging and late night bar crowds beneath my bedroom every night. And I had a quieter temperament, and I lived there from the time I was three years old on, and what I wanted more than anything, without even being able to give words to it, was to feel seen and heard. And my immediate family, that was not possible. But Grandma Helga was the one person that I turned to to provide solace and wisdom and guidance. And our relationship was critically important throughout my whole life, and in particular in high school when my high school guidance counselor, you go in your senior year and you're given advice on what's next. And he said, "Terri, you're a small town girl. You'll get lost in a big city. Your best bet is to go to secretarial school and work for your family restaurant." Well, that would have been a death sentence for my spirit. And so after a couple of sleepless nights, I turned to Grandma Helga, and she presenced herself. And she said to me, "Terri, look at all I've done without education. Think of what you can do with it." And in that moment, the trajectory of my life shifted forever. And I went on to accomplish the things I've accomplished and be in circles that I've been in. And now I'm before you to share that gift with you and the rest of the world.

Suzie Price: And so did she live there with you in the house?

Terri Lonowski: She did not. I was in a small country town, so she was like four blocks away.

Terri Lonowski: Yeah. Just walk over to Grandma Helga and and just be enveloped in that bubble of love.

Suzie Price: Oh, it's a couple of things I like what you said. I had a quiet temperament. And the fact that you were in this bustling restaurant down below and all the noise and the chaos, you never know more clearly what you do want until you've experienced what you don't want, you know.

Terri Lonowski: It's so true.

Suzie Price: So that really can create our purpose in a way, you know, it's I mean, it happens to a lot of us in regard to what drives us. Or, you know, I didn't get this. And then when I got it, I felt so much better. And so I want to help others.

[00:08:40] Terri Lonowski: Right, right. It just, you know, our challenges along the way form us and inform us and, you know, then we're left in a position of whether we choose to buckle under that or rise above it and create healing and opportunity and a better way forward for ourselves and others. So it's all all kind of connected in that way.

Suzie Price: Yeah, that is so cool. And one other thing that you said, and this probably goes to might lead into what you said the five aspects of soulful listening are I think she modeled for.

Suzie Price: You said she presenced herself. Yes. I thought that was a neat expression. I've not heard it expressed exactly like that. What what is that? I think I have some ideas, but you tell me what that is.

Terri Lonowski: Ok, well that's the second element of soulful listening.

Suzie Price: Ok, let's go into it.

[00:09:28] Terri Lonowski: So, we can jump around. So the second element of soulful listening is to become fully present. You know, I imagine we've all been in situations where we're with another person and we could almost see the bubble above their head with a list of things they're thinking about, not us. We feel it. And so when we are fully present with another person, then we can we can tune in and we can hear what they're saying, either with their words or beyond that. And so sometimes it sounds a little abstract, you know, becoming present. And during live events. I love to guide attendees through a breathing activity. And we can do that right now. Let's just do that.

Suzie Price: Okay. Perfect. Let's do it.

Terri Lonowski: So the way that we're going to do it right now is we're going to take three intentional breaths. And the way we'll do that is we'll fully exhale. Then we'll breathe in through our nose, hold, and then breathe out through our mouth. And we're going to breathe into the count of four and out to the count of six. And there's a reason we do that. So let's begin. Okay. But first.

Suzie Price: So everybody listening, I want you to do it with us okay. So while we're breathing, you breathe okay. All right.

Terri Lonowski: So first of all, check in with your body. Just kind of move around a little bit. Just kind of shake off the day a little bit. Shoulders up, shoulders down Okay. Let's begin. Breathe in through your nose to the count of four. One, two, three, four. Hold out through your mouth to the count of six. One. Two. Three. Four. Five. Six. Again In. Hold. Out. Hold in Two. Three. Four. Hold. Out. Four. Five. Six. Now notice your body. How do you feel differently than you did before? Wiggle your toes.

Suzie Price: Present.

Terri Lonowski: Right. And so when we take these breaths and become present, it shifts the energy, you know, within our own body and within our relationship to another person. So just be with that calm and realize that when you bring that into an interaction, it also affects another person in a positive way.

Suzie Price: Wonderful.Love that. And that took literally what 10 seconds, if that long?

Terri Lonowski: Yeah, exactly. And don't we have enough time in our day to take a couple of breaths? We're going to breathe anyway. Just do it with awareness.

Suzie Price: Purpose. That's awesome. Okay.

[00:12:34] Terri Lonowski: Okay. So we're going to go back to the first element of soulful listening, which is self-care. And it's rarely talked about in regards to the high quality of self-care, is directly connected to high quality communication and listening. There's a direct connection, and self-care is more than a bubble bath. Although we can enjoy a bubble bath, but it includes things like how are we talking to ourselves? What is that loop that's going on inside? What is the nutrition that we're putting into our body to fuel us, to become the high performance people that we want to be in all aspects of our lives? What's our quality of sleep about? You know, more and more studies are really indicating the critical nature of quality sleep and enough sleep. So when we truly take care of ourselves in this way, we're setting healthy boundaries. We're taking care of our physical body. We're maybe going for walks in nature, whatever it is that fills us up so that we can come to an interaction from a position of overflow as opposed to depleted. You know, and in Grandma Helga's case, she was taking care of herself. So when you were in her presence, it wasn't like she was grasping at you to fill her up. She was already there. And so when we do that for ourselves, it's a gift that we give to others as well.

Suzie Price: You said it's a direct connection to our relationship with others?

Terri Lonowski: It's the quality of communication, how we can listen, quality.

[00:14:15] Terri Lonowski: You know, like if we're if we are depleted, we can't even hear our self. Yeah. And it's important to hear not only and listen to your others to listen to yourself. You know, we have kind of an internal guidance system that will nudge us. And it's important to hold the space so that we can tune in to that.

Suzie Price: Yeah. You know, you're talking about who influenced you. So my folks were good people, but they did not have the internal foundation to be present. And so I'm always real aware of that. So like they could and you know, they can't give what they don't have you know. And so I personally experienced that, you know, they are good people, but they didn't have the internal peace enough to be able to be present, which is I mean that's, I love that that's your number one, because in order to be helpful to others, we have to take care of ourselves.

[00:15:15] Terri Lonowski: Right. And it's not a selfish thing. It's really kind of a generous thing that we do. When we take care of ourselves in this way. And it's not an indulgent way. It is really in fine tuning and listening to the needs of your physical being, emotional being and taking care of that, so that when we interact with another, we are resourced to take on those conversations that at times may be high stakes and it may be difficult.

Suzie Price: I love your languaging, we are resource.

Terri Lonowski: Thank you, thank you.

[00:15:53] Terri Lonowski: And so when we truly take care of ourselves in the way that we just talked about and we become fully present, we bring a quality of grace and compassion into our interactions. And that sets us up for the third element of soulful listening, which is quantum listening. If active listening and empathy had a love child, it would be this element of soulful listening, and it's different than traditional kind of listening. It's all in listening where you listen with every fiber of your being, through every source you have available, through your senses, and you notice even those things beyond what are obvious to your eyes and ears. Yeah, and when we connect with another person in this way, we often gain insights into how we might be helpful to another person, especially when we enter into the conversation with a degree of higher emotional intelligence, where we have our emotions in check and we hold the space for the conversation to unfold in a new and unique way, as opposed to playing out both sides of a conversation before we even enter into it. And in the past, that may have sounded something like, oh, he'll say this, I'll say that, and it's going to end like this. Which never turns out well, and it's never generative. And so when we can hold that space for the conversation to unfold, when we, you know, step into the conversation with a couple of high quality, open ended questions, insights can be gained. And, you know, our purpose on this in this life is to help others. My quote that is from the Dalai Lama.

Terri Lonowski: And so when we gain insights to how we might be helpful to another, we're in a position to really be a game changer in another person's life. And so that leads us into the fourth element of soulful listening, which is inspired action. And that's taking action on these insights that we've gained. We all have access to resources and connections that can be of enormous value to another person. And it may be as simple as making a phone call, making an introduction, calling a business, making a business connection. Yeah. And then that leads us to the fifth element of soulful listening. And that's where we tie it all together. And it's the feedback loop. And what that means is simply letting a person know that you've taken this action on their behalf, no strings attached. I can think of times in my own life, and maybe you can as well, where you've had a deep conversation with somebody. They're doing the nodding of their head. They're leaning forward. You feel so heard. You laid yourself out in front of a person, and then crickets. You don't know whether they took action, whether they really heard you. And so in a work setting, when that happens, a person will most likely constrict. They'll say, that's it. I'm never offering like an innovative idea again, or that was a waste of my time, when in fact, the person that they had the conversation with may be taking action. So it's what I have found this in companies that just simple, simple loop to connect and to just bring it back because action maybe has been taken. The person just doesn't know. And an interpersonal like a romantic relationship. The way that could play out or between a parent and a child. When they had these, one of these soulful listening conversations and a need has been revealed, and you're assuming action will be taken and there's no feedback to you that it has been taken. Resentment can just filter into into the mix of your relationships. So anyway, I've talked a lot. What what else might you want me to express?

Suzie Price: I love the 1. Your languaging is beautiful. The quantum listening, inspired actions. And could the feedback loop be also maybe not what you did, but even like I think that when you said that about like I'll tell Jeff my husband something. I'm married, known him for 30 years, so we're really connected. We have a great relationship, but he's not much of a talker, so I'm always wanting the feedback loops. I'll be like, "okay, give me something here. You know, I just told you. Da da da da da." You know something that I'm upset about or something. And he'd be like, "I heard you and I'm with you." And I'm like, well, just tell me.You know that can play out all over.

Terri Lonowski: It Does, it does. And you know, oftentimes I will talk to people and I'll ask, well, have you asked your people how they like to receive feedback? Sometimes it'll be like a surprising question. Apparently. It's like, well, we sent an email and it's like, that's good for certain people. Others really benefit from just walking by their desk and saying, hey, I heard you don't know what we could do with this, but I'll let you know if we're able to act on it. And that could just embed such confidence and such power within a relationship.

[00:21:09] Suzie Price: It's if you invite feedback, which you should, on any action you're going to take, if you can do more of these steps in the listening process and you can hear it, you're not going to be able to take in and do all the offerings or suggestions, but if you can go back and say, hey, you know, when you shared this, we weren't able to do that. But I really did appreciate your feedback. And here's what we did and why that. Is that what you're talking about?

Terri Lonowski: Exactly, exactly. So that a person isn't left hanging and falling off into the abyss, you know, because that's unsettling. And that can be disruptive within a person, you know, like emotionally. Because when we're vulnerable and we share even, you know, particularly like, innovative ideas, I mean, you're kind of on the edge when you're doing that. And in my opinion, what we need right now globally is the best and brightest in each of us, fully expressed, so that we can take on the challenges that are before all of us. And for me, deep listening is a way to unleash that potential. And so when we hold this space for people to flesh out their ideas, their innovative ideas, you know, at times that's really messy. And it's not perfect the first time, nor should it be. But when you have the safety of just, you know, like going through an iteration of it and maybe failing and picking yourself up and then having that dialogue to fine tune that. I think that's where the, the genius that may have been locked up is unleashed.

Suzie Price: A lot of lot of leaders don't want to ask for the feedback because they're like, well, I'm not going to do all of that. We've already made our decision. You know? So it's just, you know, but if you ask, then you may make a better decision first off, and second off you get commitment because now you know where they're coming from and what they're thinking. And then the feedback loop, I mean, you've got a really great model here. Everything you talk about makes so much sense. What is the hardest part for people to do, do you think in general, out of the five pieces? We've got self-care, become fully present, quantum listening, inspired action and feedback loop. Which is the one that you see when you're talking to corporations or leaders that are in businesses small and large struggle with?

Terri Lonowski: I'm going to say something that you might not be thinking. That's not really a direct answer. It's starting. That's that, that's it. It's just taking that first step is where people, you know, we have our patterns, we have our habits and what we're doing with this way, this holistic approach, we're doing pattern interrupt. That is how we have been. And if we want to evolve, if we want to have a high performance, functioning relationship in our work and with our customers and within our families, doing this approach will get us there. But we have to take that first step. And so I often, you know, suggest that people start small, don't jump in with a high stakes conversation with this angst that you've been carrying around for six months. You know, that's that's not the topic to exercise your muscles on first go round. And what I love to suggest that people do like for self care. Pick two things that you will commit to yourself, Nobody else, to yourself that you'll do over the course of the next week. And it may be, you know, if you have a dog, you have to walk the dog outside, right? So notice something in nature during that next walk. You know, we all have busy lives, but you can overlap some of these things.

Terri Lonowski: You know, at at work maybe you park a half a block away, so that you get some more movement before you go in to work and as you are leaving work. Whatever it is that you can incorporate in your life, but commit to yourself two things over the course of this next week and then check in with yourself. Not shaming, just checking in. Honestly, did I do it well? Am I going to do it this next week? And if the answer is no, fine, pick something different. But, you know, keep the momentum going and then you know, the becoming present. Pick one conversation over the course of this next week where you're going to take a couple of breaths. You don't need to make an announcement to anybody else, just within yourself. And you can just take three breaths right there, your eye contact with the person that you're getting ready to talk to and your body energy will shift. And as you're there, another person will be able to feel something's different. They might not be able to put words to it and then listen. Just listen. All in all in. Don't play out the script in your head and see what happens.

Suzie Price: That is great counsel okay. So just get started. And I could see where that, you know we get in our patterns and it's a pattern interrupt which is another great languaging of the process. And what is an example of a difference this has made in someone's life? Doing more of this type of listening. What would you say?

[00:26:36] Terri Lonowski: You know, I've got a fresh one. Can I share? It's like a personal. It's not work related.

[00:26:42] Suzie Price: Yeah, absolutely.

Terri Lonowski: So, I met this couple about eight years ago and we just really connected and they've been, you know, like fans of the soulful listening for a while. Well I hadn't heard from them for several years. And a month ago the gentleman wrote me an email and that he said that he and his partner, I don't think they ever got married. So what, whatever. Anyway, he and the love of his life had really embraced this way of being, and it became critically important. She was diagnosed with cancer and he was her caregiver. And they had the best conversations ever because they listened with every fiber of their being. And it was a gift.

Suzie Price: Yeah, I think we yearn for this kind of connection.

Terri Lonowski: Yeah.

 Terri Lonowski: And when we look at this, the statistics, I know Cigna has done several studies indicating that half of the American population is lonely. And I think there are recent studies out, maybe by Gallup, that we're talking that people have loneliness in the workplace. Is it like over 80%? Anyway, those are figures.

[00:27:56] Suzie Price: 15 million people said they were lonely in the workplace recently, 82% of 15 million people. So whatever. That number is a lot of people lonely.

Terri Lonowski: Right. And so when we look at that and how that impacts productivity, not to mention the, you know, the internal well-being of an individual. So the reason people feel lonely is because they don't feel connected. They feel left out. They feel like they don't matter, that they're there. And so what I would submit to folks is that listening in this way, communicating in this way that I call soulful listening, people feel heard. We are hardwired to thrive when we feel seen and heard and supported by others. And I would just challenge you to be the catalyst for this happening in your own world, in your own relationships, because it can make such a difference. I mean, the pain of loneliness is what inspired me to create soulful listening. The ache that people are feeling. And when I ran across that statistic, I mean, it brought me to tears. It brought me to tears. I was a consultant and led human centered design teams. And I don't know if you know much about human centered design, but at the core of that is empathy, using empathy to kind of shift services to their clients on the on their ear. And so I had I had teams from across the nation. We were competing to showcase workforce innovation at the White House. So my team, you know, several of my teams were selected, as was I. And so what I learned from that is the power of empathy. And then I ran across that statistic about the loneliness. I go, well there are missing pieces. There are missing pieces. And out of that, after I sequester myself for two months to find out what is it that makes this within me different? And out of that emerged the soulful listening approach. And so the reason that I'm mentioning that is we have missing pieces in how we just traditionally and normally are communicating, and it's evidenced that it's not working when you have the statistic that you just mentioned, and the one that I mentioned, you know, and I believe that soulful listening is one way for us to do it better.

Suzie Price: Yeah. Love it. I mean it's not just an idea. It's very practical. And, you know, one of the things we talk about is people before task, before ideas. And it's through the trimetrix assessment, something we measure with. And it's it's okay, you can have strategy and you can have things that you have to do, but the people have to come first before you can do any of that. And then and then this is a very practical, heart centered way to do something that's very subjective and yet really real.

Terri Lonowski: Yeah. Thank you so beautifully put. I appreciate that. And, you know, I think that I'm big about being able to apply something. I mean, I have a master's degree in educational psychology. We can talk about theory and these principles that are behind social learning theory.

Suzie Price: And you need the principles and all of that, you know, to make it practical. But at the end of the day. What impact is it going to have? And so that's something.

Terri Lonowski: And and that's where the, the rubber meets the road. And if, if folks can walk away with, you know, just incorporating this way of being and try it out in your personal life, try it out with your teenager, challenge you to do that.

Suzie Price: Oh, yeah. Yeah. Talk about having preconceived notions in your mind when you're talking to someone. Have you heard of Relational Presence?

Terri Lonowski: I have not.

[00:31:49] Suzie Price: I did an interview with Eric Atwood around that. I was participating in it because I had, I have, not had, continued to have a very busy mind and was speaking and presenting, and I wanted to be more present. And so it has you get up and speak, uh, with no agenda. You can't plan. And I'm a big planner, you know, and I plot everything out. I go in the moment, in the moment. I plan a lot beforehand anyway. So it was a real challenge for me. And they videotaped you. And all you get after you speak is. And you can't plan anything, you just have to be present and then see what comes up. So it's getting you in touch with your intuition. And then the people that are in the room can only give you what they appreciated about what you said. So and I know the name of the group. I'll put it in the show notes, but it's a whole group does these kind of these relational presence speaking groups. And that changed me fundamentally because. So in my head and so like worried that what I was going to say was not right and I didn't trust what was coming up. And we all have this guidance and that's that's what you're tapping into is, you know, the inner knowing that people have, that they are good and they are worthy and they have something to share, you know. That's amazing. Yeah. You know being present. I love it. So organizations are you going into organizations and sharing?

[00:33:15] Terri Lonowski: I am. I'll just share with you a recent one. And it was a you know a business that was in Phoenix, Arizona. The CEO reached out to me and said, Terri, you know, we are growing so rapidly and we're having trouble with our communication. Why don't you come here? And so we, you know, we kind of talked through what might work well and came up with working with leadership. And so I did like a workshop, as you know, like a half day workshop with their executives. And then we got into the soulful listening. All of that. How to practically apply it. And what I did from that time until the time that I did the keynote, which was a few days later, I had conversations with several people within the organization so I could get a feel for what their pain points were and where the breakdown really was. And then we did a keynote for 250+ staff. And so then they had the common languaging and were able to begin to move forward with that. And so I had the CEO and I had a conversation very recently, and he said, you've helped us and given us the tools so that we can hear each other and ask kind of questions that matter. So that's a step. Yes, that's a step.

Suzie Price: Yes. I mean that's a wonderful step. How beautiful. It's like it's because you were able to touch everybody and then give the framework. Now everybody can say, well, okay, are you soulful listening? Am I soulful listening and have real conversations like, really have something get said.

Terri Lonowski: Right. And then, you know, when when you have those kinds of conversations, you know, like insights that I had mentioned before will pop up. And some of them can be as simple as, oh, we know that we're growing so fast. You're going to make the admin people do all of this stuff. Just stop by and just let us know ahead of time that you matter to us. And this is coming anyway. And that's all they wanted.

Suzie Price: Yeah, yeah.

Terri Lonowski: Sometimes it can be that simple.

Suzie Price: Sometimes the problem with communication is the illusion, you know, that it's happened. You know, sometimes we think it's happened. We've said it in our head but we haven't actually expressed it, and done it in this way you know.

Terri Lonowski: And the funny thing about storytelling, because we will do that if there's a gap and we're not right in the loop and we really don't know what's going on, we'll make up a story. We're we're humans and we do that. And the stories are never accurate. Ever. Yeah. Yeah. And so even though it is, you know, kind of, I don't know, kind of nerve wracking to have high stakes conversations. It's always worth it.Yeah.

Suzie Price: And they feel high stakes. But actually they're just real. And if you have a lot of real conversations, they probably don't feel high stakes anymore. It gets to be the norm.

Terri Lonowski: It it becomes the way you are, the way you are being in this world, and it just becomes how you are and how we are in one setting is really how we are in all settings. It just is. And so what I, what I love hearing is when I've worked with people like in a business setting or a corporate, that they take this home and how easily it applies in their home relationships. And so that just makes me feel really good. I have I have one that I'll share. I did a workshop and it was with a group of women and, you know, one of the self-care items, I, I have a gratitude practice. And so I have a bowl and I, you know, but what I'm grateful for and drop it in. And when I'm having kind of a rough day, I'll kind of empty the bowl and look at it and go, oh, it's really not all that rough, Terri. And so one of the women, you know, wrote to me afterwards and she said, well, I took your idea and made it my own. I go. And the way that she made it her own, she had three teenage boys. And so she put her gratitude vessel on the kitchen counter, like in the marble counter. And then the boys would come in and they would drop in what they were grateful for. And their friends that visited go, what's that all about? And so it started a way of communicating and having conversations about what they were grateful for. So it shifted. You know, that repeat conversation of like, why don't you pick up your shoes? Why don't you? You know that? And now we're moving into a different way where you can engage in meaningful conversations that are non-threatening. Yeah.

[00:37:49] Suzie Price: Yeah, it's appreciation is the gateway to joy.

Terri Lonowski: Oh, I love that.

Suzie Price: Right? I mean, think about it. Like, I can be all frustrated if I go make a list of appreciation. I'm like, okay, well, I don't even have any access to whatever I was frustrated about. About that person or about that situation.And then some new idea comes. It's like you can't solve a problem at the place you were when you when you started, right? I can't get you to clean your room if all I'm thinking about is how your clean rooms not clean, you know?

Terri Lonowski: Right? Right. Interesting.

Suzie Price: So subtle, but so strong.

[00:38:22] Suzie Price: Good work. I mean great work that you're doing in families and in companies and being the beacon of light for this beautiful, way of being. And you exemplify it in your energy. I'm seeing you in the video, which everybody will not get to see, but they'll get to hear it in your voice and your actions. So it's very evident. And, and of that, let's talk a little bit about, uh, go into our wake up eager strength segment because people might be interested in, okay, wonder what her wake up eager strengths are. And so you were kind enough to take the talent insights assessment. And it talks a little bit about your style and your motivators. And I sent you a list of strengths. And do you mind sharing on the some of the strengths of, by no means is all of your wonderfulness, but it's some that come from the assessment. Yeah. Picked your favorites. What did you pick and why do they matter to you?

[00:39:22] Terri Lonowski: Right. I'm going to need to look again. Okay. Patient and willing to listen to the feelings of others. Which is what I'm all about. Yeah. So that was right on point. And, you know, I would just admit, listening in a deeper way and a more connected way is why I'm here. Yeah. So it was right on target.

Suzie Price: And that sounds like Grandma Helga, too, right?

Terri Lonowski: Yeah. Helga. Right. Right.

Suzie Price: Patient with and willing to listen to the feelings of others. If you're patient, then you've got good self-care. You've got enough energy to give. You're not in a rush. Yeah. Very cool.

Terri Lonowski: Yeah, because you can't, you know, you really can't have patience with another if you are like, fight flight trying to survive the moment.

Suzie Price: Yeah. And you're fighting for your self-esteem. You're fighting for your sense of confidence or whatever. Yeah, that is fantastic. What's your other one? You picked one other one.

Terri Lonowski: The other one is brings enthusiasm to the creative process. And I just embody that. I'm kind of creative anyway. And so I bring that no matter where I am, whether it be in a work setting or just in photography that I do, or just being with another person. Yeah.

Suzie Price: So according to the assessment for people who are listening and a lot of people who listen, do, you know, are familiar with the assessments. And her top drivers, according to the assessment, is high aesthetic, which is a drive for balance and harmony and self-expression and creativity and self-actualization. And, you know, kind of can correct imbalances and is intuitive and all of those things which I believe we've experienced from you today. You bring this nice presence, you know, and nothing better than somebody who has that to role model that for us. And then your second driver is, according to the assessment, is theoretical. And that is a love for knowledge and learning. So I love both of those for you. And I can see that as a teacher and a trainer of a facilitator of balance and harmony.

[00:41:33] Terri Lonowski: And to me that is, you know, so needed today and when let's say when I bring that balance or that that container of safety into a setting, it's really beautiful because then people, others another can tap into their gifts because they they know it's safe to do so. They are calm so they're not in the fight or flight mode either. And then we can access our greatest genius.

Suzie Price: Making it safe for them to be themselves.

Terri Lonowski: Yes.

Suzie Price: No judgment. No trying to get you to be a certain way.

Terri Lonowski: No, no. Can I share a story?

Terri Lonowski: Yes, please. Do we have time? Do we have time for a story?

Suzie Price: We always have time for stories.

[00:42:20] Terri Lonowski: Okay, okay. Well, it's just a couple of things have come up and I'm going to going to share the story of my son Jacob. And I think it will kind of tie a few things together. So I was a single parent to Jacob from the time he was ten years old on, and we've only communicated with one another in this way his entire life. So when he was 15, we tuned in for a high stakes conversation, and I asked him this question, Jacob, what do you want for your after high school experience? And then I listened. And at six foot five, 300 pounds, he stood tall and said, mom, I'd like to go someplace strong in math and science, and if I could play on a good football team. Is there a place that has both? 15 years old, cornfield in the backyard. He and I know that anything beyond high school is up to the two of us to financially take care of. And I said, Jacob, I'm not sure. We're living in Nebraska. There's corn fields in the backyard. I will check around. And so I did. And I checked around in the southern school kept popping up. And so I went back to Jacob. That's the feedback loop. I'm letting him know I heard him, I took action, now I'm looping back. I go, well, Jacob, people are saying this school. He goes, well, we should go. And I'm thinking, I don't even know how I'm going to pay for a plane ticket, let alone feed this gigantic 300 pound athlete in a big city.Yet when you listen soulfully and take actions, doors will open. So he was 15 years old, just turned 16, took him down to the southern school. We're meeting with coaches. We're meeting with students. We're in a park walking. A couple of days later, he looks down at me. He goes, mom, I feel like I belong here. And that was it. He took invitations from other schools, crumbled them up and threw them away. I go, Jacob, you know you want to maybe go check. He goes, what's the point? I'm not going to go there. So before the end of his junior year, he had earned a full scholarship to play football at Georgia Tech. Jacob did all the work academically and physically. I simply walked alongside him, holding that space for possibility and listening. So he lived, you know, he has lived a life of great possibilities. He's gone on. He only lives in a world of high demand and great possibilities. He went on to earn a doctorate degree in physical therapy, and now he's head of human performance and development, working exclusively with Navy Seals in San Diego. Possibilities unleashed. And this big behemoth guy writes me a poem a couple of years ago about the way that we communicate, and said that it is a relationship as an art form, and he will have no other in his life. There we go.

Suzie Price: Oh, wow. That got me a little emotional. It's beautiful. That is beautiful.

Suzie Price: Yeah, that is beautiful. And what what a successful journey. And I agree with you. I tie it right back to how you created the space for him to express. I mean, how often are we shut down or we're with, you know, family situations where they're so caught up in their things that they can't really listen. So where do the kids go, or where do the employees go? If they can't be heard, they're going to express it somewhere in some way, right? It's not positive usually.

Terri Lonowski: Yeah. Yeah.

Suzie Price: But yeah there is, that's powerful. That's wonderful. Love that story. Does he live in the South now or where did you say he lives?

Terri Lonowski: He lives in San Diego. So he's in. Yeah. He's in charge of developing this program. And they serve Navy Seals. Half of them are active duty Navy Seals. The other half are former Navy Seals. And it is miraculous. But anyway, and he speaks this way to the people that he's dealing with. And that that warms my heart.

Terri Lonowski: Yeah, yeah.

Suzie Price: About possibility. Not what can't be done, but be speak what you're interested in.

Terri Lonowski: Here we go. And then take the action to do something about it.

Suzie Price: Yeah. That's beautiful. What a great story. I'm so glad you shared it.

Terri Lonowski: Thank you.

Suzie Price: That is wonderful. Let's see, timing wise. Well, what else do I want to ask with you? For you. How about do you think that your grandma Helga is the one who influenced your high aesthetic, this balance and harmony and making sure there's no chaos?

Terri Lonowski: Uh, absolutely. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. I mean, she she would set the stage, so to speak. And so I've done that in my own life. And I mean, it's second nature to me. But the reaction I get from people is, I've never experienced this before. And so that tells me that it is something of value, and maybe it's something rarer than I believe it to be. And it is a gift that if I were to share with the world and, and the world would emulate it, it would be this gift. Yeah.

Suzie Price: And when they are trying to explain what they've never experienced before, what what do they tell you? I've never experienced that someone listened to me this way, or I've never been as honest with someone. What kind of things do they tell you?

Terri Lonowski: Gosh, I never told that to anybody before. Oh, you know, I had this thought, but but now that I'm saying it out loud, I see where I can be even better. And it could be like, oh, I just feel so calm when I'm around you. So those are the kinds of things. And when a person is calm, then they can access their own higher reasoning. When we're in fight flight, we cannot physically, physiologically, we cannot access that. Anyway, I'm not going to go into all of that, but we cannot access higher reasoning. When we're in a state of calm. That's why, you know the beauty of meditation, you know, because you just kind of calm it down and then you may get like ideas like oh, oh, oh because you're no longer, you know, like running for your life.

Suzie Price: Yeah, it changes the makeup of your brain basically. I mean, in regard to the brain research organization that is part of what we do. Uh, it will show whether it's red, you know, which is inflamed. And then it turns blue when somebody meditates on a regular basis. I mean, that's the unscientific explanation of it. It's exactly what you're saying.You know, you become different and you make better decisions, and you're being more who you are meant to be.

Terri Lonowski: Right?

Suzie Price: That's amazing. So let's do a little bit more about you as we kind of come towards a close. When you think of people who are successful, is there somebody that comes to mind. Maybe Grandma Helga and someone else?

Suzie Price: Who would you say?

[00:49:49] Terri Lonowski: I mean, I would, I would say Grandma Helga because my definition of being successful is the world is better for me, having been there. Yeah. And so the world certainly is better for Grandma Helga having been there. Yeah. So that's that really is at the core of it. I mean, I've had the have the blessing of being around a lot of, you know, successful people and have been influenced by them. And I'm grateful for every single one. And the one where it began was Grandma Helga. Yeah.

Suzie Price: Yeah. In those formative years, she was the beacon of light and still is. It sounds like. Yeah.

Suzie Price: Um, if you could give advice to your 25 year old self, what would you share?

Terri Lonowski: I would share. Hang on. It's going to be okay. You're getting ready to step into things you can't even imagine. And it's going to be okay. Yeah.

Suzie Price: Awesome. Reassuring. Doing some good listening for your 25 year old self, right? Soulful listening. Not just good listening, but soulful.

Suzie Price: If you could put a billboard anywhere to influence others, what would it say? And maybe where would you put it?

Terri Lonowski: Mhm. I know what it would say. It would say take a breath and listen. And it would be where the most possible people could see it. And also in the most remote places, where maybe they're not exposed to this kind of information on a regular basis.

Terri Lonowski: Yeah.

Suzie Price: Yeah. Awesome. And then what's one last bit of advice or wisdom you want every leader or coach to take away from this conversation?

Terri Lonowski: yeah. Lead. Lead through listening. That's it.

Suzie Price: And we'll have links to your website and and your Ted talk which has over 200,000 views. So what's so great about that is not only that you got that many views, but that that many people are interested in or attracted to the idea of tuning into others.

Terri Lonowski: Yeah. It's beautiful.

Suzie Price: That's beautiful. And we'll have the show notes of these steps. Do you have somewhere else that these steps are written down, or maybe an article that you could share with me so that people could access it that way as well?

Terri Lonowski: Sure. I could share an article that was in Authority Magazine. That's that's a good one. And then of course, on my website, you can access access that in the the elements are there and the TEDx talk is kind of a good way for, for those that are more auditory and would like to just listen in and visual because it's, you know, it's a video also.

Suzie Price: Yeah, yeah. So you've got all the ways that people can pick up on it. So we'll make sure links to everything and including those articles. But what we're going to go forward and remember is going to take self care first. We're going to become fully present. I'm trying to you catch me if I don't have it right. Were going to focus on quantum listening, which is the love child of active listening and empathy. You have great language. And we're going to, from there, pay attention to inspired actions. And then we're going to make sure step five, that there's a feedback loop. We share what we heard or what we did.

Terri Lonowski: Love it. Thank you.

Suzie Price: Love it. Thank you so much.

Terri Lonowski: It's been my pleasure. What a joy. Thank you again.

[00:53:36] Suzie Price: So I hope you enjoyed the episode. You now know more about what it means to presence yourself and I love her five steps. Self-care. Focus on presence-ing you become fully present. Quantum listening. That's the active listening. Mary's empathy, their love child. I love how she said that inspired actions and then tie it all together with a feedback loop. I mean, I think that covers everything and I'm super excited that she talks about self care first. So, so often, you know, in the trimetrix assessment we look at the self view. You know, we have one mind. We think in two worlds our world worldview and our self view. And then within each of those worlds, we have three areas of focus. And then what I often see in the self view in the trimetrix is sometimes we're putting a lot less focus on self care. So do I know my value and worth? Do I know where I belong and do I have hope for the future? Is what trimetrix measures on the self view, how we be, how we do, how we think and feel. So I love that she starts with that. And I have found that the people who have higher Self-view scores in the trimetrix assessment are are more resilient. They recover more quickly. And I just did a data export of a group of people who were excelling in the role. And this was in a big company. And the people who didn't make it or resigned.

Suzie Price: And what you saw was higher scores on everything related to the worldview and the self view in trimetrix and the acumen assessment. So this idea of starting with how do I become a better listener while I become more full of who I am in the best kind of way? I know who I am, I know I have value. That's part of the self view and trimetrix. I know where I belong. I have a sense of belonging not only in my work but in the in my personal life. I have community and then I have. I have visions for myself. I have goals and values and expectations and hope. So a positive association for my future. All of that explains how my self view and the right kind of feeling place around our self view. And so in order to be a soulful listener, we need to strengthen our internal self. And so I think that Terri's steps for soulful listening is amazing, because I've not ever heard anyone say the first thing is self care. So she really is tuned in to let's take care of ourselves first. After the interview, Terri and I were talking a little bit and she said, you know, while this information is important to every member of our team, Gen Z, ages 28 and under, especially expect and want this level of connection and real conversation. If they're not getting it, they're going to get out the door or they're not going to give their best.

Suzie Price: So they'll be part of that group that's quietly quitting or actively quitting. So tuning in, using these steps to become present with people and do the quantum listening, I kind of call it people first listening. So it's the active listening plus empathy and understanding without any kind of agenda. And I love how she describes all of that and how how important it is. So I also wanted to point out her wake up eager strengths. And so when we talked about that. So we're always learning more about what does that mean that when we're talking about strengths we're looking at the talent insights part or the disc and motivators part of trimetrix. And so I think there's so much power and goodness in the motivators piece because it is what puts gas in our tank. It's what enthuses us. It causes us to want to take action. It's what we're most interested in. It's what we care about. It's nature, nurture. We come in with these interests, and if we can form our life around them or our days around them and get that, that's kind of our purpose or our special gifts that we bring to the to the world. And so Terri definitely brings those special gifts. Her top, one of her top strengths was aesthetic, which is and she said, I create calm and order in my life.I have a quiet temperament, so she has the high aesthetic and the people oriented style, and I love what she shared as some of her favorite items, an environment in which she could deal with many people personally and intimately. So that's what she's doing in this work, and a forum to be curious about the discovery of new information. So that was information in her Talent Insights report. When you have the combined items between your communication style and what puts gas in your tank. The motivators and it's called ideal environment.

Suzie Price: So everything that we shared I enjoyed so much. I'm so glad I got introduced to her through a friend of mine and I am glad that we had her on. We have in the show notes at priceless links to articles and the Ted Talk that Terri did. We also share some of our other podcasts that relate to this discussion, and one of them is talking about relational presence. And so look at that link. That's when I was doing a bunch of speaking circles. So it was about speaking. And we mentioned it in the in the podcast episode discussion, but about speaking but it was really about wasn't about what you were saying. It was focused on helping you tune into yourself so that you could be present while you're speaking, so that you can become inspired and share, connect with people. So that might be very interesting to listen to if this topic interests you.

[00:59:26] Suzie Price: I did episode number 27 about listening aggressively. I did a deep listening episode with a gentleman who had a book about deep listening, and then a recent episode with Wall Street Journal best selling author Ryan Jenkins. So be sure to tune in to our show notes to get the transcript for today, and to get links to Terri's information and contact information, as well as her TEDx talk, and then some of the other podcasts related to this topic. Again, the tracker link to find all of that is go to All one word lowercase.

[01:00:03] Suzie Price: And I guess I'll close with a definition of relational presence so you can be thinking about that. Am I present with my spouse, with my kids, with my neighbor, with my coworkers, with people who work for me, and it means to be available for connection. So that is, I'm listening without trying to debate. I'm listening without waiting until I can jump in and say something. I'm just stopping everything and being present in the moment. It's quite a gift when we can do that, and it doesn't take much time. It just takes some practice. It's a master communicator when we can turn off our need to fix and just be present. And it's amazing how that presence, you know, without having any judgment or demands or expectations, allows people to be with you and then feel better about themselves and come to their own answers.

Suzie Price: And then it helps us learn to trust ourselves, to share when we need to share, and to listen when we need to listen. So anyway, it's a powerful thing and it's a very nuanced thing, but I think it's worthy conversation. So I'm so glad that we had the conversation today with Terri. I'm so thankful that you have tuned in. I thank you for being part of the Wake Up Eager Workforce podcast audience and friends and listeners. We love any kind of comments that we get. It makes my week. I think, you know a good compliment will last you a month or something like that. Mark Twain said that. So we just I just love knowing that you're listening. If you liked or benefited from this episode, please leave us a review on Apple Podcasts or Spotify helps people find us. Send me a note and let me send it. Let me know that you actually created a review, because one that'll highlight me for a month. I'll feel great for a month because of your feedback, but it also I can send you a complimentary Workplace Motivators assessment as a thank you and appreciate everything, and we look forward to catching up with you and tuning in if you ever need anything from me, it's We'll catch you on the next episode. Take care. All the best.

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