25 episodes

For life's gentle rebels, weary travellers, and those looking for more sustainable and enriching rhythms in our high-pressure, hustle-heavy, fast-paced world. Andy invites quietly creative and sensitive souls to identify and reconnect with what matters most through his gentle meandering conversations and nourishing soundscapes.

The Gentle Rebel Podcast Andy Mort

    • Education
    • 4.9 • 29 Ratings

For life's gentle rebels, weary travellers, and those looking for more sustainable and enriching rhythms in our high-pressure, hustle-heavy, fast-paced world. Andy invites quietly creative and sensitive souls to identify and reconnect with what matters most through his gentle meandering conversations and nourishing soundscapes.

    24 | How To Be More Spontaneous (and Less Impulsive)

    24 | How To Be More Spontaneous (and Less Impulsive)

    Are you spontaneous? Can you go with the flow when plans change or if something catches your attention and invites you to follow it?

    In this episode of The Gentle Rebel Podcast, we look at the characteristics of spontaneous people and explore how we might add more spontaneity into everyday life. This was the topic of our Haven Theme Kota when we chatted about creating conditions for more spontaneous acts of gentle adventure and play.

    Table of contents* What is Spontaneity? | 4:14* Spontaneous Rest | 7:16* The Spontaneous Story We Tell Ourselves | 9:10* Building Life on Spontaneous Foundations | 11:31* Impulsivity, Compulsiveness, and Spontaneity | 13:12* The Space Between Stimulus and Response | 18:50* Spontaneity and Gentle Rebellion | 22:47* Impulsive Goals | 24:25* Spontaneous Acts of Kindness | 28:01* Trying Not to Try | 36:43* Spontaneity Grows in the Gaps | 40:23* How To Practice Being More Spontaneous | 42:33

    What is Spontaneity? | 4:14

    “Spontaneity is enjoying the moment as it unfolds or experiencing something unexpected with open arms. Spontaneity is agile, adaptable, and responsive to new information. It is a willingness to go in a new direction at a moment’s notice. It is a creative burst of energy.”

    Ann C. Holm

    We might imagine spontaneous people as being constantly on the move. Highly energised and ready for an adventure at the drop of a hat. But it's less about what we do and more about how we hold life's invitations.

    Spontaneity is an active willingness and participation in the choice.

    As Holm writes, “it’s not completely without restraint. Someone spontaneous tends to take a quick inventory of the big picture before deciding to proceed."

    A spontaneous decision "occurs without external stimulus", controlling or compelling it. Spontaneity is freedom from pressure and expectation.

    Spontaneous Rest | 7:16

    Is rest a spontaneous option for you?

    Rest might not be an option, primarily when other demands compete for attention. As such, we often push ourselves to the point where rest is no longer chosen willingly. Finally, we are exhausted and have no choice but to stop.

    Spontaneous rest should be an option if we want to enjoy more a href="https://w...

    • 1 hr 2 min
    23 | What If It’s Not Safe To Fail?

    23 | What If It’s Not Safe To Fail?

    Confidence grows when we feel safe to fail and make mistakes.

    Sports people typically attribute confidence to believing they can beat anyone. So I was surprised when an England cricketer linked the team's recent historic success to their willingness to lose games.

    The England test cricket team has been playing a completely different brand of cricket. It's expansive, exciting, and "fearless". As a result, it comes across as extremely confident. But is that confidence built on what they can expect to happen when they fail instead of simply believing they can beat everyone?

    In this episode of The Gentle Rebel Podcast, I explore the idea that confidence (and excellence) can be grown in unlikely places when people, things, cultures, and processes make it feel safe to mess up.

    Table of contents* The Three Little Pigs | 3:12* Confidence And The Desired Outcome | 10:16* Misplaced Confidence | 13:50* Confidence is The Safety to Fail | 20:10* Good Leaders Show It's Safe To Fail | 28:30* Playing It Safe Is a Failure of Safety | 31:32* Bringing vs Burying Failure | 33:48* What Happens When We Run Out? | 36:32* Fear of Being Misunderstood (Bad Faith Is Unsafe) | 41:00* The Team Makes It Safe To Fail, The Crowd Not So Much | 45:20* Arrogance ("Over-Confidence") is a Lack of True Confidence | 50:32* Safety To Fail And The Road To Excellence | 57:40* Hunting For Confidence (A Courtyard Workshop) | 58:56

    The Three Little Pigs | 3:12

    Do you remember the story of the Three Little Pigs? It's a perfect tale to help us consider different sources of confidence in everyday life.

    Confidence And The Desired Outcome | 10:16

    We often think about confidence in broad and general terms. When we do this, very few of us would not wish we had more of it, making us susceptible to products and services advertised with a promise of helping us become more confident and self-assured in life.

    As such, we will always come up short again. So it's far better to consider our confidence in particular situations, environments, and projects.

    The three pigs had an objective. They needed to build strong, resilient houses that withstand adverse winter weather and keep the big bad wolf at bay.

    • 1 hr
    22 | Grimacing Isn’t a Necessary Part of Personal and Creative Growth

    22 | Grimacing Isn’t a Necessary Part of Personal and Creative Growth

    Since early 2021, I've been haunted by a tweet I read: “If you're not grimacing every time you look at old work, then you aren't growing.”

    I decided that I needed to put the icky feeling to use. So I'm using it as inspiration for an exploratory journey into creative growth and self-compassion. Because I don't want to live in a world where people grimace every time they look at their "old work". That sounds like hell.

    So in this episode of The Gentle Rebel Podcast, I want to explore how we might enjoy, rather than belittle, the bravery that gave rise to "old work". We will think about the difference between casting and using judgement to develop, mature and grow as people and in our creativity. And open up space for healthy foundational growth that doesn't follow a one-dimensional linear path.

    Episode contents* Creative Growth WITHOUT Grimace | 1:38* Grimace-Growth is Imbalanced | 7:5* What Does Creative Growth Look Like? | 12:46* There Are Different Grimaces | 16:21* Using vs Casting Judgement | 20:55* Judgement as Shame ("I should be better") | 23:36* Judgement of Project ("this could be improved") | 25:22* Judgement of Opportunities and Desires | 29:35* Using Feelings of Inferiority | 42:52* Superiority Complex is an Inferiority Complex | 44:43* Victim Mindset | 47:06* Demands For The External World To Change | 48:24* Willing Others To Fail | 49:06* Replace The Disowning Grimace | 53:54* Make Peace With Past Efforts (Equal But Not The Same) | 55:00* Handing Over: A Bridge From Somewhere to Elsewhere | 56:11

    Creative Growth WITHOUT Grimace | 1:38

    When I internalise this grimace, it's not just about my relationship with my old work. It's about how I hold myself and other people. It's about how I relate to EVERYTHING. So, for example, if I was doing the best I could and still grimace when I look back at it, what am I doing with other people who are doing the best they can where they are?

    What sort of world does this approach create in the long run?

    Grimace-Growth is Imbalanced | 7:5

    • 1 hr 5 min
    21 | (What) Were You Even Thinking?

    21 | (What) Were You Even Thinking?

    Machines can obviously perform tasks that once required human intuition and creativity. So what do we have left? In the long run, is there anything in human thinking that will differentiate us from artificial intelligence?


    In this episode of The Gentle Rebel Podcast, I talk to neuropsychology professor and author Dr Chris Niebauer, who is the author of No Self, No Problem: How Neuropsychology is Catching Up To Buddhism.

    There is so much to unpack about creative play, flow, and learning to hold ourselves and the world in more helpful, healthy, and humane ways. Since I first read the book, I've wanted to speak with Chris. And if you've ever wondered who you are, then I'm sure you'll enjoy our conversation!

    Episode contents* "Where is the self when no one is thinking about it?" | 10:22* Thinking With a Both/And Approach | 14:32* Split-Brain Research and Investigating Two Sides of The Mind | 15:04* Tools of The Thinking Interpreter | 18:22* Who is Left When Things Change? | 19:18* Thinking Through The Past, Future, and Present | 21:06* How To Engage The Right Brain Without Over-thinking It | 25:46* You Can't Force The Right Brain To Play With Left Brain Thinking | 30:14* Don't Confuse The Symbol For The Thing | 33:51* Embracing Non-Dualism in a Binary World| 35:37* Thinking of Life as an Escape Room | 36:22* Most of Everything is Nothing | 1:07* The Joy of Bad Days | 45:23* Memory, Meaning, and The Constant Self | 1:07* Playing With The Story of Self | 58:43* Mind 2.0 (Human Creativity and Artificial Intelligence) | 64:31* Music Inspired By The Conversation | 75:34* Support My Music on Patreon

    The way we process information and make decisions is heavily influenced by the functioning of our brain, precisely the distinction between the left and right hemispheres. While the left hemisphere is associated with logical and analytical thinking,

    • 1 hr 21 min
    20 | We Seem To Confuse Weakness For Strength (and vice versa)

    20 | We Seem To Confuse Weakness For Strength (and vice versa)

    There's been a shift in the conversation about strength and character. Some weird messages have infused mainstream culture and are clearly impacting how people relate to one another (and themselves). We sometimes confuse weakness for strength and write off strength as a weakness.

    In this episode of The Gentle Rebel Podcast, I want to dive into weak traits that I've seen confused with strength. We will think about the characteristics of genuine strength and consider ways to create conditions for more of it in ourselves and others.

    Episode contents* What is Strength? | 3:31* Unavoidable Heavy Lifting - Life in Funeral Care | 5:42* Physical Strength | 7:57* Emotional Strength | 9:34* Letting Go of What We Carry | 12:40* Find Healthy Ways To Unload | 13:17* Collective Strength From Sharing The Load | 14:32* Domination, Power, and Control | 17:01* Gentle Force | 24:10* Brittle Force | 26:25* Personal Weakness Through Symbolic Strength | 27:24 * Flexibility and Stress Responses | 29:54* How To Strengthen an Argument | 35:02* Avoidance, Resilience, and Support | 37:01* Strength and Humour | 44:30* Active Stillness | 50:17* The Pause* The Haven

    What is Strength? | 3:31

    Strength is the ability to lift, carry, pull, throw, and hold heavy things. But not just physical stuff. We also need the strength to hold, carry, and let go of situations, people, challenges, emotions, stressors, thoughts, and other everyday things.

    Unavoidable Heavy Lifting - Life in Funeral Care | 5:42

    I worked in the funeral industry for six years as an undertaker. I discuss some of the strengths the job required from and developed in me.

    My experiences continue to teach me much about what strength means and how we see it demonstrated in the world. And also, some of the ways we confuse weakness for strength, especially in our expectations for how we ought to hold (conceal, deny, hide) the burdens we carry.

    Physical Strength | 7:57

    One lesson from that job was that the strength of the whole is greater than the sum of the strength of individuals. It's about more than power. It requires learned technique, awareness, understanding, and thoughtful preparation.

    When you understand what a situation requires, the resources you have to use, and you plan appropriately, strength comes through collaboration.

    • 54 min
    19 | The Deep Benefits of Slowing Down

    19 | The Deep Benefits of Slowing Down

    It isn't easy to keep up with the pace of life. It can feel like time is running away, and there's always more to do than we can manage. So it's no wonder many people are trying to figure out how to slow it all down.

    But what does slowing down mean? What do we want to let go of? And how do we make these changes in a world that expects more and more from us?

    In this episode of The Gentle Rebel Podcast, I want to go beneath the surface and explore some of the profound benefits of slowing down.

    Episode contents* Slow Consumption in a World Of Instant Knowledge | 2:41* Slowing Down and Control | 8:23* What's The Point of Personal Productivity? | 10:53* How Does Slowing Down Reduce Stress? | 13:31* What Would Help Me Slow Down in Life? | 15:38* Perception of Pace | 22:40* What Do We Want When We Seek a Slower Life? | 27:51* Slowing Down Our Important Tasks | 30:42* The Risk of Rushing | 33:40* Speed as a Tool | 35:56* Why Do Time Management Tools Make Us Busier? | 37:05* Enjoyment is Not The Destination | 40:12* Where Do We Get to Slow Down Now? | 43:45* Slowness is a Beautiful Waste of Time | 45:14* Why I Call Myself a Slow Coach | 46:56* What Would You Like To Waste Your Time On? | 48:08* What's The Rush? Enter The Sanctuary of Slowness | 50:47

    Slow Consumption in a World Of Instant Knowledge | 2:41

    This topic is on my mind as I plan the next Haven Book Club. We are reading The Courage to Be Disliked, to which we will dedicate the next four months.

    What will slowing down make possible? How much more will we see, explore, and experience by not rushing? What will greet us in the gaps between the sessions and the vast depths as we reflect and process the ideas, and our conversations about them, over time?

    It's reassuring to know that we could quickly acquire an overview of a book's core concepts if we had to. So what if tools like Blinkest, StoryShorts, and Snapreads allow us to take our time with the books we want to read instead?

    • 57 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
29 Ratings

29 Ratings

KingLouie74 ,

Well being oasis

Just found this podcast through episode 319. At a moment when I’m working though isolation as part of nhs. This really hit the spot and I found the episode so relatable. Would recommend for anyone who needs a podcast that comes across a good friend style chat rather than the usual Dr to patient dynamic.

Sylvie, thinking. ,

One of my favourites

When much of the world is just a bit too loud or busy, this podcast carves out a creative space to think and be at peace. Andy’s considered and thought-provoking explorations offer fresh perspectives and helpful nudges, along with the comforting reminder that we’re not weird or alone. :) Super soothing (can I say perfect to fall asleep to?) and I wouldn’t want to be without it.

Akanicola ,

Really good

Listened to the podcast on social hangovers today, and i appreciated how it affirmed an experience I have a lot and am only recently learning how to notice and cope with better. The advice given was thoughtful and kind, and it's the first time I've ever really found advice on this aspect of my life, and the advice itself was based on experience and attended to the complexity of what goes on for you after social situations

Top Podcasts In Education

Mel Robbins
Beautiful Light Studios
Dr. Jordan B. Peterson
Tom Daley

You Might Also Like

On Being Studios
Clearly Clinical
Joseph Lee, Lisa Marchiano, & Deb Stewart
Kathryn Nicolai
Hidden Brain, Shankar Vedantam
Serial Productions & The New York Times