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Hi, this is Dr. Francis Malone, founder of the intuitive parents collective. I've been working with children and their families to provide holistic relationship based medical care throughout my career. This podcast is for parents interested in consciously raising naturally healthy kids. Here we will dive into topics that spanned childhood, and parenting as well as hosting exciting guests.
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So whenever you find yourself at the end of your parenting rope, tune in to the intuitive parents podcast to get a new ideas by making parenting fun.
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Thank you for joining us today for the intuitive parents Podcast. I'm Francis Malone. And I have with me today, Lauren louka.
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I created the intuitive parents collective in this podcast to reach parents everywhere, and share creative ideas, hacks, and provide support for your parenting journey.
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Welcome to the show. Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself just to start us off? Yes, thank you so much for having me. My name is Martin louka. I am a I hold many titles over the years. But currently embracing this title of decision coach that has come through my most recent publication of my book, my background is in positive developmental psychology. And I have a master's degree in that as well as certifications in life coaching and yoga. And I've kind of cumulated all of that knowledge and experience. And what I saw was really a need in the space that I was living of helping individuals and specifically women, more women than men are in my programs to tune in with who their authentic self is, which I'm sure we will dive into what that means today. And really start making decisions from that place rather than feeling scattered or pulled in so many directions, which is really easy to do with it with this information filled world. And so it's really been such an honor and an inspiration to work with these individuals and and myself and to live, you know, walk the talk of making more authentic decisions and seeing the research come to life as I see the positive implications of that unfold.
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Wow. And can you tell us just to begin with a little bit about your purse, like what your perspective regarding authenticity is like, what does authenticity mean to you, Maren? And? Yeah, yeah, if you want to see me totally nerd out about it I just released or will be releasing, probably by the time this episode airs a YouTube video about answering that question, what is authenticity. So I dive into the research, but also pull from my own experience, working with clients, coaching clients, and also in my own life. In summary, what I really feel like authenticity is is is knowing ourself, and, and then hopefully being able to act in alignment with that knowing. So our strengths and our values and our preferences and desires and our unique fears and our experiences that have shaped us to be who we are. That is authenticity, and then again, acting in alignment with all of that, I think just enhances authenticity, though I'm still on the fence of whether that's required. I think we can know our authentic self and still own that authenticity and sometimes be out of alignment in our external behaviors. But I also think it's really important with that definition, that authenticity, I think, at least on the surface, or I hear a lot of individuals talk about authenticity, as if it is this static thing, like this purpose, or this central component of what makes us us. And I'm going to Yes, and that, that definition or that belief, because what I see more so and what I have come to believe is true. And also, again, working with so many clients exploring this topic. Authenticity seems to only evolve just like many, potentially every other thing in this world. And so it's not necessarily finding out who my authentic self is honing in on that and then gripping it for the rest of my life. But it's rather this continuous process of knowing myself having more life experiences, unearthing a new value I didn't even know I had from my life experience or from even just a piece of awareness and then incorporating that into my authenticity. So it is also ever evolving. Yes, I absolutely agree with you. The idea of it being a static thing that you have at some point in your life and then it never changes is quasi ridiculous for me because I know the people that we are when we are 23 children the person that I am after I've had my first child, person that I am after the second person
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Third, and who I am in other spaces of my life are different.
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And now how to tap into that is really this amazing skill that we want to cultivate and be able to use as a lifelong
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sort of support. Yeah, no, what is authentic to us? Yeah, absolutely. And I think that permission, slip Brene, brown uses that term a lot, that permission slip to change and to be a different, quote, unquote, different person, we're probably not as different as maybe it feels like we are. But to have those changes and to let, as you're saying, the development of our own life and experiences change us in a way I think, sometimes we shy away from or maybe feel ashamed of, or worry if if we change. But actually, not only is it supportive, but really helpful and absolutely natural for that to happen. Right.
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So what are some of the ways that you work with your clients in helping people to begin to unearth or get in touch with authenticity?
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Yeah, so it depends on I have, I have too many programs, a one on one and a group. And so it looks a little different in each of those capacities. But with especially one on one, when we really have that intimate space to explore authenticity, it really is about being curious about what's here, and what's coming up. And really, any topic could be discussed during a coaching session. I often tell my clients at the beginning, I feel like I don't know really where to start or what to talk about, to just start somewhere. And we always lead to where we quote unquote need to land, and all relates, and every everything that's bringing something up in us, is just pointing us toward toward the thing that can most move that needle toward being more aware and being more living more authentically, each session. So again, with that one on one, it's really about this curiosity of, you know, why why did this happen? Why? Why did I act this way, or, or I really feel called towards something, what is that about and getting curious about why that feels so important, or how to step toward that in a way that feels bold and exciting, but also safe enough that we're not going to then run away and burn it all down.
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And then And then really just having this space, I just yesterday had a client, who has a lot going on in her family right now. And she just said at the beginning of our session, I'm so glad I have this hour reserved in my week to have a space, that's just for me, because unlike coffee with a friend or talking with family or journaling with ourselves, all those things are, are beneficial in their own right, and to have this space where it's really just me as a coach listening, and they never, you know, the tables never need to turn, of course, for them to listen to my own stuff. I have my own coaches for that. So it's really all about them and continuously circling and asking questions that allow them to, to either dive deeper into something that's happened, again, to get more curious about something that is tugging on their heart or pulling their attention are really just to have that space to say, Catholic, I would just want to be me, I just want to let my existence or experience of this time of this season, whatever they're navigating, just be enough and be here in a way that really I at least in my experience, I haven't found it to be us to have that space in any other relationship. Because there there is inevitably in relationships that two way street. And with coaching, it's just all about that person exploring or just being them. Right in the coaching.
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arrangement or making time for having a coach really allows a person to begin what I think is one of the most important steps is to really make time for yourself and to start looking at your own life and learning to love and care about yourself. Because I think that that is like the first step towards getting authentic, really is being able to accept yourself and your feelings. And then the curiosity comes in if you settle into Okay, these are, I can see my response is to whatever's happening. And why am I doing that? But until we start to accept ourselves and care about ourselves. I think that that curiosity is sort of stifled in a way and you probably see that unfold for your clients all the time. Absolutely, yeah. Yeah. So two parts of what you just said really stand out. One is that you're saying making that investment time and financial and everything else that it takes to bring a coach into your life or just take that leap ofUnknown Speaker:
to even reach out to a coach or to you know, the support system that's feeling best at this time for you, that in and of itself can sometimes be the biggest, the biggest catalyst for not only self acceptance and self love, but also this thisUnknown Speaker:
statement to yourself and to ourselves of I am worthy of this. And I am ready to explore in some capacity. And I've had clients tell me in the past that really having that the console call I offer for individuals, and then deciding to sign up for coaching, that almost was the biggest thing that shifted their life, because it was one of the first times they ever invested in themselves in that capacity and allowed that that to be, you know, not something that was just a luxury or a second thought, like, I'm going to prioritize myself and this. And so I love that you brought that up there at the beginning of that statement of if that's a really important part of it. And then I also enjoy that you're talking about acceptance, the word that comes to mind for me is actually based in yoga philosophy, which is Pinaka. And this is this philosophy that we are perfectly hold just as we are while simultaneously growing into more. And this is the approach I really take, not only because it's shown by the research that it's most effective in goal attainment and everything else. And also just feels better. But also because it's something that I really value in the coaching space that and a lot of my clients work with a therapist and myself. And the difference I see there is that there appears often helping to digest or ask those, you know, the why did this happen? Where did this come from kind of looking in hindsight, and also in the presence of like, How is this all functioning? And coaching has more so a lens of where am I going next? And how do I get there, and certainly the past and our experiences come into that conversation. But that's why therapy and coaching is oftentimes a great balance to have both support systems. But with this idea for not looking forward, sometimes in the coaching space, I see this dialog of you need to be more, there's always something else to go after. And that can be a slippery slope, because sometimes that creates more self criticism than it does that self compassion lens, that's really helpful. And so this productive approach of I am already enough and, and right and good. And there's always going to be more, there's always going to be changed, just like when we were talking about the definition of authenticity. And and so taking this approach, again, not only do I find it to be effective, but alsoUnknown Speaker:
feels way better in in the process rather than than slipping into that self critical territory. So to your point about self acceptance, absolutely, that's a really crucial part. When I think that the self acceptance part, and knowing and understanding your worthiness actually allows and a person toUnknown Speaker:
stabilize and support themselves and bring to more wholeness their root chakra, right. So then we areUnknown Speaker:
really feeling security and self love. AndUnknown Speaker:
we can do bolder and bigger things and dream in a larger way. When we feel like we are worthy. And we are whole.Unknown Speaker:
Right? Yep. And that's right, my ability, my approach for parents is that, you know, you have a child and you come to parenting with this feeling that there's so much to learn, but you also have everything that your child needs already. And tapping into that is the place for me, of finding your authentic parent and the wisdom of the parents. And that sort ofUnknown Speaker:
place where self love has to happen in order to be able to feel a know what yourUnknown Speaker:
internal wisdom is about how to move forward with this new relationship with this child.Unknown Speaker:
Yeah, yeah. What a beautiful approach and reminder. And it doesn't have to be an either or write it doesn't have to be either I'm learning something new, or I have everything I need or my child needs. And in fact, it's often as my business is titled, yes. And it's, it's yes, there's so much for me to learn, and there's so much I want to learn. And even if I don't read that book today, it's gonna be okay. I have, like, you're saying I have the core elements, the essentials here. And so to lean on that and I think oftentimes a fear that comes up, or at least I've seen many times this fear come up, both in the research and with my clients, is that if we take that self compassionate approach of it's okay, I'm enough as is even if I don't read that book, or even if I don't take that course or even if I don't, you know, ask the advice ofUnknown Speaker:
Have someone else in this moment and get the best right advice for this situation. And there's a fear that there's either goals won't be attained, or we're not going to be enough or we're not going to improve or we're going to go into this stagnancy.Unknown Speaker:
And that's just not true.Unknown Speaker:
I'm often not wanting to just state a belief, but in the research and coaching so many individuals, and like we're saying in this conversation already multiple times is that that self compassionate lens, the acceptance of we are enough, we do have everything we need, and will probably always want to learn more, and, and do so go after that, but self compassion and doesn't hinder our ability to grow or hinder our ability to show up for our kids or anyone else. In fact, helps fosters nurtures that ability to do so enhances our ability to help ourselves and others and achieve all the goals and learn all of the things that's actually an aid in the process.Unknown Speaker:
In the process of learning to trust yourself to because we don'tUnknown Speaker:
information filledUnknown Speaker:
society where there are many, many different ways to make a decision with many, many different pieces of information.Unknown Speaker:
I think we people have lost that ability to look into the inward and to spend time inward versus getting advice. Like, I don't know that we really always need advice. And in fact, it's probably a lot less than we think,Unknown Speaker:
spend some time with ourselves and really tune into what is the next best step for us?Unknown Speaker:
Yeah, yeah. One of the first chapters of my bucket is titled, who are you listening to, and it is this whole reflection of, and not to anyone's fault. I think this is just been our society and our school system. And, and really developmentally, as well, we look to others for advice and guidance. And I have a section about as kids, we have to, we have to look for parents and teachers and mentors, because we're new in this world, and we don't have it all figured out. And there's a lot to learn. And at some point, we have enough information, just like when you were talking about parenting, having you have everything you need. And there comes a time in our own lives just within ourselves, we have all the advice and information that we need to really make a decision that feels most true to us. And in fact, the only person that has the capital T information of what's needed to make an authentic decision is within us not outside in anywhere else. But I so often see a lot of clients and myself and individuals always always always looking out and gathering data. And that's beneficial to some degree. Well, also, if we can bring it back and filter it through our internal self, our intuition, our authentic values, and strengths and preferences. And just that gut feeling that gut feeling of okay, I already did the data gathering, I've already asked for advice. Now, can I take a breath, come back? And trust whatever answer is appearing for me, or trust what other whatever next step is appearing for me, and to know that it's a process. So this isn't going to be the only next step you ever take that can also help to lessen the pressure of those moments. Right? Well, and I love taking the pressure off and being able to say to your family or to your children. Oh my gosh, look at this, I made it like that was not the best decision. Look at this. I'm an adult, I'm running this show, or I'm leaving the family. AndUnknown Speaker:
like, I don't even look at what we're doing here. Well, let's, let's figure out a different way, I'm going to take a different make a different decision. I don't have to box myself into a cornerUnknown Speaker:
and say, Oh, I made this decision. And so I have to stand by it. And know, I could admit to the people that I love and who love me that let's move in a different direction because that one didn't work very well. And where do Whoa, or where do I want to go if the kids are super young or to you know, seven or 10 year old? Do you have ideas about what how we should do this better? Because being authentic about the choices that we make and how we make them with our children I think is a way to model self love self knowledge andUnknown Speaker:
how to make decisions and move forward with grease.Unknown Speaker:
Yeah, that lightness is so appreciated and needed and often off it connects connects each other of hey, IUnknown Speaker:
Messed up just like every other human ever on the planet has messed up at some point. Many points many points in all of our lives. And I think that's also not only and I love that you're saying, you know, involve others involve the kids in making decisions in saying, Wow, look at this like this isn't working out is it and kind of have a laugh about it or even let someone else's opinion be there if if your kid is looking up at you like that did not work out to be like, Yep, you're totally right thatUnknown Speaker:
that was not my best choice or I thought that would go way differently.Unknown Speaker:
And I lost my train of thought there was somewhere I was going, but the the sense of of decision making with others, oh, the connection point of it, that also fosters not only our own authenticity, but also gives others that permission slip gives our kids because our families gives our self our future self that permission slip to do that. And I think we've all experienced or witnessed when someone is trying to skirt around not having made a mistake or like push it off and not take that ownership and we can feel that dissonance that that's not true. That's not honest, that's not authentic. And it doesn't feel great. And it distances connection rather than fosters connection. And so when we can, I know it's humbling and and uncomfortable at times to be like, yeah, that was not that was not the best. But to think of the big picture of this is actually really, really helpful for myself. And for those around me in continuing the pattern of authentic decision making and just authentic authenticity generally, rather than putting on a facade that it's not okay to show up as your authentic self. If, if then statements if I messed up or if it's uncomfortable, or if whatever that is, right. Well, this reminds me of it. I'm going to tell a little story here, becauseUnknown Speaker:
reminds me of one of the big growing moments for me as a parent. I took my three boys who wereUnknown Speaker:
1012 and 15, to Alaska to visit their cousins. AndUnknown Speaker:
we arrived after flying on a plane from Seattle up to Anchorage. And we arrived and I had booked a rental car. So we go to the rental car place and I give them my license and my card and we're ready to get on the road because we've got a four hour drive ahead of us. And it turns out that my license is expired. AndUnknown Speaker:
I was like, Wait, it can't be expired, because I just flew on a plane. And the rental car company said Yeah, but they don't care if your license is expired. They just care that you have a license and that it's indicating you. And it's like but if I just flew What am I gonna do I have zero car, nobody can come meet me. What could I possibly do? And my children were just like, how could you as an adult, forget to renew your license. And it was mind blowing for myself in my little bit of control problem that I had at the time to like, oh my gosh, I can't believe I did this. I can't believe I did this. And but instead of spinning there, I sat down with the boys and well, what else could we do? Because like, if I can't drive, no one else in this little group of us can drive? And how do we get down there? And one of the boys said, Can we take a plane? Or can we take a train and I was like, Oh my God, you are so smart. And they got to help me figure out this major life thing and then to understand that, you know, their mom doesn't always track that shouldn't her license need to be renewed because it's every 10 years at this point. AndUnknown Speaker:
anyway, it was a growing moment for my whole family because they got to see that I made a mistake. And then I didn't get snippy with other people and just start you know, blaming in other places rather I just took it as funny and laughed at myself and weUnknown Speaker:
figured through it so yeah, what a great moment for your boys and and yourself. But I'm thinking of putting myself in your kids shoes and having that experience of wow, yeah, I you know, from their vantage point I can also help in this decision. And it's she made this mistake and apparently adults make mistakes and having maybe a mask lifted of okay, so adults make mistakes and almost thisUnknown Speaker:
recalibration, like okay. So in the future if I make a mistake, and like here's a great way to handle it, or I was thinking to if anyone else has been in a situation where maybe it was similar, but they didn't handle it so well. There's also still room for that conversation of like, hey, remember or you know, you noticed I can tell that that wasn't the best way and that was a mistake and to have those vulnerable conversations and what stands out to me is just you were treatedUnknown Speaker:
Your boys as humans, rather than, you know, they're, oh, they're young, they don't know, they've never been in the situation. And that led to a solution and a bonding experience for everyone.Unknown Speaker:
Well, I really believe that we owe our children even from their very first time on this earth, the respect of apologizing, when it doesn't have to be in the moment, because we cannot always figure out that we acted poorly, or that we didn't show our best self or that we weren'tUnknown Speaker:
living in our highest,Unknown Speaker:
like vibrational abilities or best emotional abilities, but that we can come back, we can come back in 10 minutes, we can come back to it a day later, whenever it feels like we could own it, and say, Wow, I was scary, or I was mean, or that is not acceptable to me, and I am trying to be a better person each day. And sometimes I'm not. And I think that when we own that for our families and in our relationships, then all it does is help them to grow and to, to to be stronger and to be able to weather that stuff that comes up further down the road.Unknown Speaker:
Yeah, and even a precursor to that helps ourselves to grow to I think of, and this is often when I'm working with clients is when they're discovering those moments of Oh, yeah, that wasn't realizing in hindsight, or the present moment. Yeah, that wasn't, why did I act that way, or that was like a behavior. That's not, I wouldn't think I would have or this is something I usually wouldn't let get under my skin. And I'm so emotional about it. And to have the first step of the awareness and the humility, of invulnerability of telling ourselves or admitting to ourselves, accepting that that is a way that we acted.Unknown Speaker:
And of course, that's needed before we can then show that to our families and to our kids have had that wasn't the best I'm learning and, and giving them then that chance to learn and grow, as you said. But that first step of and it can be, it can be scary, and it can be, it's looking in the dark corners, sometimes of our mind or our experiences of Yeah, that's not comfortable to admit, because I'm really not proud of that one. Or that's just really surprising. And that kind of makes me question my identity or who I thought my authentic self was. And so to ask those powerful and courageous questions, as a precursor also fosters our own growth, of course, exactly.Unknown Speaker:
Well, Morgan, I am so thrilled to have had you here on our podcast, but I want to make sure that I give you time to tell us about your new book, as well as how myUnknown Speaker:
listeners can get a hold of you in the future, should they desire, a coaching call or relationship with you, other than just having listened to on our podcast? Yeah, thank you so much. So my new book is ready enough. It's a seven step guide for life's hardest decisions. And those hardest decisions, what are they? They're the ones that are authentic to ourselves. And I labeled those as the hardest decisions. Because as we've been talking about all show, oftentimes, those are the decisions that feel right to that, right as in that gut feeling or that intuition, that feel good, maybe not even good, but just like, oh, yeah, that's the right one to us, but may not be understood by those around us. And I give many examples of my own life and my clients life of what that looks like. And then also really tangible practices to help navigate through those decisions, from the very start, which is simply creating space to hear our own voice amidst the noise of everyone else and those good intentions, but sometimes overwhelming advice externally, to making the decision to act in alignment. And then also on the other side of those decisions, what is it like to be in a place of consequence, good and bad, or neither of us having made a decision and especially a decision that feels really true to ourselves, and to own that and to embrace that and to trust that after the decision has been made. So it's, it's, again, really practical, filled with stories. And I have a lot of reviews on Amazon share that it's it feels like a friend just sitting down to chat about what it's like to make these decisions and how to go about making them. In terms of working with me beyond the book. I have two programs, as mentioned earlier, the one on one and the group program. And in I'll highlight the group because I already talked in brief about one on one. I have a lot of individuals in that group program again, mainly women, though some men who are in some sort of life transition and wanting to take advantage of that life transition as a catalyst to be more authentic.Unknown Speaker:
true to themselves. In terms of parents, I have a lot of individuals who are either welcoming kids into the home for the first time, or on the other side. And their kids are either about to or, or have already left the nest. And that those opportunities are, of course, huge life changes. And so a lot of individuals have come into this community, which is incredibly supportive community. I really beyond my wildest dreams of who is in that group to ask, How do I want to show up? And and how am I showing up in this new space in this new season of life? And is there a way that maybe I can learn from what has happened and also consider where I'm wanting to go next and pursue all of that from a place of greater alignment or greater authenticity staying true to myself in the process? So everything that I just talked about? All of the programs, the book, everything is on my website, yes. And by mine calm, that's why esandbymarin.com. And I also have free trainings on YouTube, which I believe I mentioned at least one during this interview. So there's a lot of resources there. I would recommend starting with the book, I have a free free chapter one if you want to just take a peek. Otherwise, that's available that's linked on my website. And we'll link it here, too, so that our listeners can, you know, tap on it and just have an exploration of some of your ideas. Amazing. Wonderful. Great. Thank you so much. You're so welcome.Unknown Speaker:
Hi, this is Francis. Thank you for tuning into today's episode of the intuitive parents podcast. We are thrilled to have you here and hope that you enjoyed it. Please share our podcast with others who may benefit and leave us a review. To receive a free gift of the 14 Day Challenge. bringing peace to your household. Go to my gift from francis.com That's my gift from francis.com. Take care. I look forward to working with you