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Podcast: Letting It Shine with Dr. Judith Wright

Podcast Image - Catching the Light.jpg
Podcast Image - Catching the Light.jpg

At the risk of sounding like I'm sitting atop a high horse, I'm going to note an important distinction.

There is a sweet difference between LEARNING how to be our best selves and actually BEING our best selves, no?

For instance.  It's awesome to post inspirational quotes to our Facebook walls.  It's even awesomer to heed those words and actually conduct our REAL lives in a way that makes us proud.  Yes?

My high horse is out to pasture.  I make that distinction because I realize that even despite my passion for self-development work, when I am triggered towards a pattern I'd like to change, actually MAKING those changes is… do I say…it is FREAKING HARD.  And SCARY.

That's why I like how Dr. Judith and Dr. Bob Wright differentiate between "learning," "growing," and "transforming" in their book, "Transformed!  The Science of Spectacular Living:"

    • Learning - knowing something you didn't know before
    • Growing - doing something you haven't done before
    • Transforming - becoming someone you've never been before

The Wrights studied the small group of "Positive Deviants" who made quantum leaps forward when they emerged from the Wright Leadership Institute, as opposed to most of their peers, who made significant but incremental improvements.  They figured out what separated these two groups, and they created a process (and this book) to help other people become Positive Deviants, too.

Positive Deviation?  Sign me up for some of that.

Dr. Judith also coined the term "soft addictions," which I talked about in this particularly awesome post which no one saw because I changed URLs that same day and accidentally broke all of my mail chimp links.  Whoops.  (Bop on over.  Surely you want to.)

Now guess what.

It is with elf-like happy dances that I announce a new "Catching the Light" Podcast Series in which I will to be interviewing brilliant (as in "smart" but mostly "luminescent") thought-leaders to get their best tips on how to "Let It Shine" in the real world.

And guess what else.  Dr. Judith Wright (a radiant being and "one of the most sought-after self-help gurus in the country") is my first guest.

Hot dog, hot dog, hot diggity-dog!

Here's the podcast:


Listen in the car, or while you're cleaning or working out or whatevs.  I can't wait to hear what you think of it.

Podcast Highlights:

  • How to address that "itch you cannot scratch" (feeling unfulfilled despite tremendous achievements.)
  • The key to being happy BEFORE losing the weight, finding the spouse, or meeting that next goal.
  • How to use the "So That Test" to figure out what your soul yearns for.
  • Judith's reflections on my self-judgement about yearning to be seen.
  • Simple components necessary for old dogs to learn new tricks.
  • What to keep in mind if you feel like there's "no use" in making changes because people cast you into a role you can't escape.
  • How seemingly harmless activities like habitual-facebook-checking or shopping addictions make us "numb and dumber."
  • One small thing you can do today to become your "next most radiant self."

Podcast Quotables (click to tweet):

"We think 'this is just the way it is.' No: it's the way you're wired.  You can do something about it." - Judith

"Any career can be made into a calling and any calling can be made into a career." - unknown

"Science proves old dogs CAN learn new tricks.  We're just AFRAID to change, or we don't want to do the work." - Bethany

"You know what's a sign of weakness?  Not changing." - Judith

"92% of Americans admit to having soft addictions and I think the other 8% are in denial." - Judith

"Live this day more adventurously. Get a little out of your comfort zone. What emerges will be a glimpse of your next most radiant self." - Judith


Any thoughts on the Podcast?  Future people you'd like me to interview?

I love to hear from you!



Fabulous Roman Candles.  (How to Discover Your Inner Fire)


Fabulous Roman Candles. (How to Discover Your Inner Fire)

I've recently become aware of a deep craving in my soul.  It's a fire that burns, burns, burns "like fabulous roman candles exploding like spiders amongst the stars"--a craving so unquenchable that no vice could quench it.

Not chocolate, not wine, not work addiction, not late nights mindlessly surfing Facebook.

I'll dub this "the Jack Kerouac Condition" and classify it as being "desirous of everything [and nothing] at the same time."

The only people for me Jack Kerouac.jpg
The only people for me Jack Kerouac.jpg

Here's the thing.  You, appreciated reader?  [Yes--I'm talkin' to YOU!]  YOU are a person for Jack Kerouac too.  YOUR soul is a ball of unquenchable light that yearns to illuminate YOUR path.

If you can't see that, it's only because you're not allowing yourself to see it.

Allow me to explain...

I Can't Get No Satisfaction

I didn't know I had the Jack Kerouac Condition until I very rigidly decided to renovate my life a few months ago.  I've never been keen on the concept of New Years' Resolutions, but it seemed to me that 1/1/13 was as good a day as any to become the best self I'm meant to be.

So I committed to consistently rocking the habits that enable my best self to thrive.  Not just SOME of the habits.  ALL of 'em.  "Go big or go home":  that's my over-the-top motto.

So I've been going to bed earlier, waking up before the kids, starting every day with freshly juiced vegetables, not using my computer after dinner, limiting my sugar intake, getting rid of clutter, reading more books, exercising every day…yadda yadda yadda.  It's been a while since I've used television or alcohol to mindlessly pass my time, but if I still did, I'd'a nixed those suckers, too.

Pretty soon, I started to feel INSATIABLE.  I knew I was craving SOMETHING and I knew it wasn't any of my vices I craved.  I also DIDN'T KNOW HOW TO SATISFY MY CRAVING.

It was driving me crazy.

Testing a Solution

I posed this conundrum to my therapy [aka "accountability"] group recently.  I told 'em that I can't get no satisfaction.

A keen group member observed, "I don't wanna state the obvious, but you just said you've eliminated all your vices.  Maybe you're being too rigid.  Cut yourself a few breaks.  Live a little."

Rigidity IS one of my patterns, so I jumped on this advice.  Plus, I liked this suggestion much better than whatever my therapist ["coach," if you prefer] was talking about when she told me I'm forgetting my "why's."  Hogwash, that sounds like!

[For the record, I actually WAS forgetting my "why's," but that's neither here nor there now, is it?]

So I headed to the bar.  The candy bar, that is.

But not even a Snickers satisfied me.  That's when I knew I had it bad.

So I jumped to the big leagues and ate a lemon-filled, chocolate-glazed donut so fast that I literally searched the floor to see if I had dropped part of it.

That donut, my friends?  That donut came close to muffling the hunger of my soul.  It came awfully, deliciously, frighteningly close.

The Ah-Ha Moment

That's when I realized there are two ways that we can address our innermost cravings:

1)  Figure out what our soul desires and DO it - BE it - THRIVE from it - SHINE with it, or

2)  Muffle it with food or late-night Facebooking or wine or an overwhelming schedule and then wonder why we feel so damn unfulfilled all the time.

When I took away all of the strategies I normally use to mindlessly pass the time, it suddenly became obvious that I was never craving any of those things that I thought I had craved in the first place.

All of the times that I THOUGHT I wanted chocolate, it was actually something bigger that I wanted.  The chocolate just made the yearning more bearable.  It dulled the flame.

My point today is not to help you discover WHAT you burn for.  It's to awaken you to the awareness THAT you burn.

Because you DO burn, my friend.  Like a fabulous roman candle exploding like spiders amongst the stars.


Are you aware of the fire that burns in YOUR soul?

If not, try this:

1)  Brainstorm which activities you resort to when you're feeling overwhelmed.  (Popular answers = tv, internet, shopping, wine, frantic attack of to-do list, etc.)

2)  Dedicate one full weekend to doing none of those things.

3)  When you feel tempted to do one of those things, just ask yourself, "is that what I'm really craving right now?  Will [the vice you crave] FULFILL this yearning, or just muffle it?"

4)  Notice what comes up.

5)  Share your thoughts with me in the comments.  Writing down your observations will help you remember them next time you have a craving.



The universe continues to delight and astound me with the incredible opportunities it puts in my path when I follow my truth.

Around the same time that I realized I've been masking my inner fire, a lovely reader told me that I have a lot in common with her boss, Dr Judith Wright, and that, if I'd like, she'd be happy to make an introduction (THANK YOU, MEGAN!!).

I quickly learned that, among Judith's MANY successes, she is widely renowned for coining the term "soft addiction," which refers to "those seemingly harmless habits like over-shopping, overeating, watching too much TV, endlessly surfing the internet, procrastinating - that actually keep us from the life we want."

Okay, so…THAT sounds familiar.

It gets better.  Judith (along with her husband, Bob) just released her third book, "Transformed!" which outlines the six scientific stages of personal transformation, teaching people how to become their "next most radiant self."  She devotes an entire CHAPTER to yearning.

What we have found here, folks, is a verified EXPERT in "Lettin' It Shine."  She is the perfect person to kick off the "Let It Shine" podcast series that I've been intending to start, and I'm so excited to speak with her tomorrow.

Our conversation will be recorded and downloadable in my next post, so keep an eye out for my "Let It Shine" podcast with Dr Judith Wright about the science of spectacular living!


Do you have any questions about your own journey with learning to allow yourself to shine that you'd like me to ask Judith?  

Let me know in the comments and I'll try to fit it into the podcast!