STB 1 | Women Community
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Seen But Not Heard with Michelle McGlade

It’s just Michelle this episode! Michelle gets a bit emotional this episode because she recalls a bit of her traumatic past and why she felt like she needed to ‘not be heard.’ She’s been practicing breathing three deep and meaningful breaths lately because one of the negative mechanisms she has developed was to hold her breath. More on how to work on your mechanism in this week’s solo episode!

Seen But Not Heard with Michelle McGlade

Good day, beautiful lady. I have a treat for you today. We are shifting gears. No. We’re adding a new gear. We’ll say that. We’re adding a new gear and I’m kicking us off. So, I’m having some time just you and me, solo style, to introduce you to what I’m going to be calling the M sessions and today I want to talk about one of my greatest beliefs, which is I believe in leadership from the inside out. Now actually I could take that one step further. It’s not just a belief, honestly. I know. I just know. Do you know how sometimes you just know things like you can feel it with your entire being. Well, this is one of those things I just know it’s so deep and true for me that leadership is an inside out game. And what I mean by that is the stronger you are inside of you, the more you can show up for yourself, right?

Show up as the leader of you and who you are and trust deeply in yourself. And when you’re able to come from that place and stay in that place and pick yourself back up and get back into that place as the leader of you, you are now. Now you are ready and equipped to show up as the leader of others. And actually when you’re in that space, people just tend to follow you. You know those people, you know like some people just have IT right? They just have it and you’re like, people just, they’re like natural leaders, natural born leaders. People just want to follow them. I believe. And I know it’s because they are showing up from a strong place inside of themselves.

Now we have a choice around this. You can see it in every person you meet because this takes a desire and you make the choice every day if you want to work on you. On the show, we’ve referred to occasionally when I’m in conversations with the women I talk to I occasionally talk about going to the mental gym. That’s language that resonates for them, but that’s what they’re doing is they’re working on the inside. From the inside out. We talk about self-awareness, right? Having a self-awareness. That is also another example of conversations on this show where I’m talking to the women and they’re making a choice. They’re choosing to spend time and effort and work on themselves from a place of getting strong inside, getting to a place where they’re leading themselves.

I also talk about it, and I haven’t said this on the show a lot, but if you were to meet me in person, I talk a lot about creating a heart and mind hookup. Same thing. Just different words, different ways to connect with the concept that leadership is an inside out game, that the stronger you are inside of you, the more you show up as a leader of yourself and the more powerful you can be as a leader of others.

Now, I totally get it girl. Right? I totally get it. Things get you off track, right? There’s circumstances that happen outside of you. Chaos, life events that really can crush your hope. Totally crush your hope, get you off track. And that’s why it is really important to understand and have in your tool box the mechanisms that throw you off and then the mechanisms that you can use to get you back on track more quickly.

And that’s what we’re going to be talking about in the M sessions. It was really fun for me as I was thinking about kicking these segments off with you. I had noticed over the weekend that Brene Brown had done her commencement address for the university of Texas at Austin and had placed that information up and I watched it and I loved. She has such beautiful language and certainly different types of language than I have, but I want to share some of it with you.

And if you haven’t seen it, I’ll link to it. But go search it and watch it. It’s about 20 minutes of amazing content and storytelling. But here are the highlights and these are in her words, so I don’t want to misrepresent that. But she says you have exactly what it takes to change the world. It won’t be on your terms or on your timeline. The world does not ready itself for our plans. That’s so beautiful. The world does not ready itself for our plans. Our ability to live a life of love and meaning to make the world a braver and kinder place and to disrupt and reshape the future has nothing to do with the greatness of our plans. It depends completely on our ability to get back up and begin again. When our plans fail, we must be committed to getting back up and beginning again the exact same number of times that we fall, trip or get pushed down.

The reason I wanted to share that with you in just conversation for you and I today is that circumstances do get us off track. That is like there’s a 100% guarantee around that and it can feel like your hope is crushed. I’ve had lots of those moments. I’m going to share some of those moments with you, but remember, you always have a choice. You always have a choice.

It’s just having the courage to make that choice and when you make one little choice, it leads to another opportunity to make a choice in your ability to do that and the courage that you have is about how strong you are from the inside out and when you’re strong inside, you can lead yourself, right? You can be the leader of you make those tough decisions, those choices. Put one foot in front of the other. That creates the ability for you to lead others, as well. Lead others through modeling, just simply modeling behavior.

Now, how do you do that? How do you go to the mental gym? How do you create a heart and mind hookup? What are you talking about, Michelle? These might be some of the questions I’ve started asking myself and how can I teach you simple things because sometimes you’re looking for these grandiose shifts and changes. We’ll say, this book, if I could just read this book, this personal course, if I could just take this, everything will change. I would like to argue it’s more simple than that, but sometimes in the simplicity we lose the power and I want to talk and teach you in the M sessions the different mechanisms you can engage with in negative ways and positive ways to help strengthen that leader inside of you. All right, beautiful lady. Without further adieu, let’s get started.

The theme for our time today is “seen but not heard”. And it really goes back to, I was thinking about this the time when I was really young, I’m thinking definitely before four years old, my earliest memory being around two years old. So somewhere in that time period I was the lucky lady to be born to two wonderful human beings. They just happened to be in high school. Yeah. My parents had an oops baby. I was definitely an unplanned pregnancy and was born to two very in love teenagers, but very young.

I don’t believe my dad actually ended up finishing high school. He went out and got a job in a warehouse and started earning and started creating the opportunity to provide for his new family. And I’m pretty sure, I don’t have all these details correct, but I want to kind of paint the picture for you. I’m pretty sure that for that initial time of my life I lived with my grandparents, with my mom’s parents, but eventually these two love birds got it figured out and moved out of their parents’ homes and into a home for the two of them and for me. My parents fought a lot and I have memories of this from early, early on.

They often fought late at night. And so, when I was little I would wake up in the middle of the night and hear my parents screaming. I think it was often exacerbated by the fact that my dad was an alcoholic. I don’t know that they would have said that at the time, but he would go out drinking, come home and there would be fighting. But I don’t want to paint that as the only aspect of the picture. I also think that they were young and learning how to communicate. Right? And so, there was just fighting, there was a lot of yelling. Yelling at night is really the part that still kind of makes my shoulders go up when I say it out loud. And you can imagine being two, three, four years old and waking up in the middle of the night to hear two people screaming. It is terrifying.

And it was at this time that I learned or decided or you know, fill in the blank, to be seen but not heard. I wasn’t necessarily trying not to be seen, but I definitely didn’t want to be heard as a young kid who just really didn’t understand at the time what was going on. I just didn’t want them to come into my room. I didn’t know why, but I was just afraid of the yelling. I was afraid of it. So terrified and I felt like if I didn’t make a noise, if they didn’t hear me then their attention wouldn’t be there on me coming in because that felt really unsafe to have that amount of yelling and fighting come into where I was. So I didn’t want to make a peep.

And this is where I first learned to one, not speak up. This is where I created the mechanism to protect myself, the mechanism to not say anything. This is also where I created the mechanism to not express, because I didn’t cry. I wanted to cry and I cried at other times, but I held it in. I held in the tears. I quieted my own emotions so they wouldn’t hear me. And this is where I created the mechanism of holding my breath, because it wasn’t just saying something or expressing the tears. I didn’t even want to breathe. I would hold my breath.

Three very, very powerful mechanisms that I’m going to talk about on the show, but three really powerful mechanisms that kept me very safe or so I thought. It was the strategy that I created to be seen but not heard. And I want to talk about all three of those. But today I want to dig in to not breathing. Like goodness sakes, not breathing and how that has showed up for me and how that has impacted me.

And the opposite, the positive mechanism that I’m putting in place to flip the switch to show you the reason I wanted to start there is because I’m working on it right now and it’s come up in a couple of my interviews recently. And so I thought, you know, that’s where I’m going to start. I’m going to tell you the whole truth during the M sessions and I’ll tell you what, I just had to pause there. I really did lady, you know, we are in our greatest heart and mind hookup when we are teaching and teaching our truth.

And I wasn’t expecting the emotion to come up, but I will let you know it’s coming up. It’s coming up because I’m in it right now. Ooh, okay. There was another mechanism. Did you see it? Did you hear it? I’m gonna point it out as much as I can. So you start getting the idea, but I start singing to raise my vibration. Yep. That’s another mechanism. We’ll cover that another time. I got four out there in a matter of less than 10 minutes. Amazing.

“I believe in leadership from the inside out.” Share on X

Okay. Here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to pause and take a breath or two or three to get back to the inside strength in myself. I’m doing it live with you right now. Like literally. Here we go.

All right. I’m back. I had to pause. I didn’t want to have you necessarily listening to my breathing, but here’s what just happened. I was able to model for you several mechanisms that either I brought into this world and I created or leveraged early on as a child, the not speaking up, the not expressing the emotions and the holding of the breath and to get myself out of it, I also used some amazing mechanism, not really get myself out of it. I mean get myself out of it, but to tap back in, this is what I really want you to hear.

To go inside. I used powerful mechanisms to go inside and tap back into the strength that is within so I can use and step back into the leader of me. So what mechanisms did I use? One, I let the emotion come out. I expressed, even though it was uncomfortable and actually it was very uncomfortable because I wasn’t expecting it to show up.

The second thing that I did is I used a breathing technique and that was the key thing that I wanted to teach you. It’s not that I don’t want to go in more depth on some of these other ones, but I’m going to call them out as they come up and I see them. But for the M session for today, I want to focus on the breathing. And I used it just here and now I, I pushed pause.

But I did, I took three really deep breaths to center myself. The other thing I did that I’ll just call out was I sang a little bit, you’ll catch me when I sing. I’m not thinking about it, but it’s a mechanism I’ve created. It helps raise my vibration in my energy level. Right? So let’s go back to the breathing. I didn’t know or see all of this and I’m kind of shaking. I’ve got like adrenaline. I didn’t really know or see this in myself, but the mechanism of not breathing, of consciously making that decision when I was two, three, four years old and beyond. I’m sure I consciously did it at the time to not be heard. Right? But somewhere, I don’t know where along the way I just do it. Like I just do it and it was brought to my attention recently and I’m meeting with one of my coaches that, you know, just when I’m really like doing some deep internal thinking about myself. Like I unknowingly stopped breathing when my cortisol levels kick in, when I am feeling stress or anxiety, I hold my breath. And so that is an unknowing type of mechanism that is rooted for me. And one of the things that I’m doing because I have the choice, right? I have the choice to make the shift. I don’t, that mechanism isn’t serving me anymore. It’s truly not serving me. I mean, literally when you don’t breathe, you’re starving your brain of oxygen. Right? So that doesn’t make sense.

What I want to do is, you know, nourish myself from the inside. And so I’m spending time and I’m, you know, doing a decent job at this right now. But the commitment that I made to myself was to spend or take three deep conscious breaths three times a day and I’ll add to that. What’s happened is I’ve done a decent job. I’m not an A+ student, certainly I don’t remember every time. But what has happened is I’m more aware now. It’s creating an awareness and it’s a tool that I can use immediately. It’s so simple to when I notice like just with you here, you and I, just to take the three breaths that I need, it’s something I can implement any time anywhere. I don’t need a big course. I don’t need fancy anything. It’s all within me. And that’s what I want to share with you because you have this too.

Not the breathing part, but you have mechanisms, right? And maybe through me sharing the ones that I see in myself and even in others, and teaching you to look for these within yourself and then implement other mechanisms to get yourself out of it. That is teaching you to go to the mental gym that is teaching you to create a heart and mind hookup that is teaching you to strengthen the leader within, strengthen you from the inside out.

I hope this makes sense. It’s so deep of a knowing inside of me. You know, one more thing that I want to call your attention to and we’re going to be having these chats on a more regular basis. You and I. And some of the themes will repeat themselves until they stick for you. But I don’t know if you caught it. I said, I’m not sure my exact words, but I know I said switching, switching it on, switching it off. And I think this is a really important piece that I have become aware of is that, and it’s a great way to think about it.

It’s like sometimes I switch on the negative mechanism, right? The thing that I thought was keeping me safe without knowing it, it was, it did keep me very safe. It’s not keeping me safe now. It’s not allowing me to be strong, and so I want to switch it off, right? But I want to get to the place where I don’t have to do that anymore. Where I just know that I can breathe and breathe fully and I don’t need to hold my breath because when I implement a negative mechanism, I’m keeping myself small. I’m staying shallow, I’m not stepping fully into the strong, powerful leader for myself.

And for me, it might not be for you, but for me, the breathing, it’s got to go, you know, the holding of the breath. I really want this piece to take hold, if the breathing isn’t resonating for you. We’re going to talk about other mechanisms, but the piece that I want to take hold for you is that you have these one, you’ve got mechanisms in place, they served you at some point. You automatically are switching them on and off whether you know it or not, and when you switch them on the negative ones, they’re keeping you small. They’re not allowing you to come from a place of power, of your own power, of your own strength.

And when you do that, you aren’t showing up in your power. You are not creating expansion for yourself or for others. I want to teach you how to get out of this. You have a choice. You don’t need to remain where you are. That’s the thing. It’s interesting because, and maybe I dove into the minutia a little too quickly, but I think the thing is, is that okay, you get enough of these kind of negative mechanisms in place and you stop feeling like you have a choice. You know, they just weigh on you. They weigh on your shoulders and someone like me shows up and says, Hey, you got a choice. You know, just make a shift. Just make a shift. It’s so easy. Well, it’s not, we layer these things on and over time we can’t see through the fog. We can’t, you know, “what’s that? You know, I’m just depressed, unhappy, and I can’t get myself out of this spot.” I’m here to say you can, and it is as simple as putting and using some of these powerful mechanisms, these positive mechanisms I’m talking about.

“We have negative and positive mechanisms in place. The negative ones have served you in some way, but they’re not serving you right now.” Share on X

So, if you’re in a place right now where you’re like, I got no choice, everything is, you know, hopeless. Okay, I can’t step into whatever you’re talking about, Michelle. Then I just want to say you’ve got nothing to lose. Maybe you don’t think you’ve got a holding your breath problem, but why not just try it. Why not just try taking three really deep breaths, filling yourself up and strengthening in yourself, filling yourself up with love, self-love, and seeing what happens. Why not? Nothing to lose now is just singing for fun.

Alright, I’m gonna wrap it up for today. Let me just recap this one more time because I haven’t taught this a lot. I’m just going to be honest, but it’s, I see it, I know the mechanisms and what I’m talking about and it’s really fun for me to get to share it with you. So, we have negative and positive mechanisms in place. The negative mechanisms served you some way, shape, or form. We don’t need to analyze it. We don’t even need to care. But they’re not serving you right now and they’re not helping you to feel empowered. They’re not helping you to move to the next tiny step of choice. They’re not helping you to create expansion and empowerment and evolution for yourself. So I want to teach you by showing you some of my negative ones. But more importantly teach you some of the positive.

And today we identified the very interesting ones Michelle has been walking around with, right? Not speaking up, not expressing emotions and holding my breath. And some of the positive ones. Just expressing my emotions out loud to you. Another positive one, singing to raise my vibration. And third, the breathing. Three deep breaths. Three times a day. What will you implement this week? All right, beautiful lady. We’ll talk to you soon.

I mean, wowza lady, that was a lot. I, in some ways I feel like I showed up, I spoke my truth. So I’m so proud of that. I’m afraid to go back and listen and hear me blab. But what I want to do is thank you. Thank you for sticking with me through the end.

Getting through that, putting this work out in a new way is terrifying, honestly terrifying. But I’m really proud of myself and I know that there are individuals out there and it might be you right now that needs to hear this information and it can make a huge, huge impact in someone’s life to know that they have choice, to have mechanisms that can empower them, to get them to take that one next step towards their own personal evolution, their own personal growth and strengthening from within.

And so what I would ask you to do is share this with someone you know, who may find this powerful and useful. That is what I ask of you. That is what I am dreaming of, that whoever listens to this, shares it with one other person. And in that sharing, we are now able to make a greater impact for you, for me, and for the other people in this beautiful world. Alrighty. Until next week, chat soon.

About Michelle McGlade

Speed Versus Space with Michelle McGlade

Award-winning woman in business and best selling author, Michelle McGlade began podcasting in 2015 for the love of uncovering the story behind the story.

The Modern Leader’s Maven, Michelle believes success is an inside out game and leadership of self is the key to building teams and unlocking the next level growth in business and life.

She is the Founder & CEO of Evolutionize Media, a podcast network and consultancy bringing to life voices of modern leaders and innovative organizations by aligning strategy, development, launch planning and production for new and rebranded podcasts.

With over 200 interviews under her belt from her first podcast Making the Maven, Michelle’s newest podcast, She’s Talking Back, features conversations with women leaders on leveraging intuition, holding yourself back, and what it really takes to create the success you desire.

Michelle’s work has been featured by Microsoft, Thrive Global, Minneapolis St. Paul Magazine and beyond and she’s slayed the stage at organizations such as Autodesk, eWomen Network and Deluxe Financial Services.

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