172 episodes

Content and conversations for times of transition and change.

Join me in discussion with renowned luminaries and dear friends to explore life's myriad transitions, our understandings and our responses. What does it mean to be present, to shift our perceptions, to engage with the world meaningfully, with dignity and care? With respect for the ancient practices and the modern wisdom that continue to inform and elevate our exchanges, each episode is an invitation to Practice You.

Practice You with Elena Brower Elena Brower

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.7 • 388 Ratings

Content and conversations for times of transition and change.

Join me in discussion with renowned luminaries and dear friends to explore life's myriad transitions, our understandings and our responses. What does it mean to be present, to shift our perceptions, to engage with the world meaningfully, with dignity and care? With respect for the ancient practices and the modern wisdom that continue to inform and elevate our exchanges, each episode is an invitation to Practice You.

    Matthew Quick

    Matthew Quick

    On our interconnectedness, releasing paradigms, and receiving the work that needs to pass through us.

    0:42 – Introducing Matthew Quick; Bestselling author of The Silver Linings Playbook and We Are The Light; https://matthewquickwriter.com/ 3:00 – We Are The Light – A series of letters written by a mass shooting survivor from protagonist to analyst over the course of a couple years. These letters are about interacting with the little brother of the shooter. 5:30 – Inspiration for the story – Movie theater shooting in Aurora, Co – writing a novel about a tragedy in a movie house and the people in the community come together to resanctify this space. 8:04 – Getting sober in 2018; experiencing writers block for 3 years; entering Jungian analysis; having paranoid thoughts and taking that into the creative writing wrestling ring. After 7 years of trying to sit down to write this novel, it was written in 6 weeks. 11:00 – This Jungian Life Podcast; The protagonist, Lucas, talking about Eli, the brother of the shooter. Tiny injections of reality from your analyst. 14:00 – Lucas is tapping into these sacred places of radical love. He accesses a divine wisdom, possessed by the archetype of love in finding this reconciliation and healing of the community. 17:05 – Conversations about power – as we elevate these conversations of power, are we relegating conversations of love? Lucas take the stance of radical love. Owning the potential of darkness within all of us through shadow work and learning to love the totality of our humanity. 19:05 – How can we treat the shadow in others with more respect and bring dignity. Having the conversations as a community for acknowledging the personal responsibility for those unseen. Slowing down and taking the time to have human interactions. 21:42 – The work is to see the people that make us the most angry are the people most like us. These things that make us uncomfortable are manifestations of things that are going on inside of us. Bringing it back to within and doing the work. 24:11 – Seeing the humanity within all. Every single human is a part of this interconnected whole. Dropping opinions and assumptions and allowing vulnerability. 26:45 – Teach the kids to think, not what to think. Give them the tools to make up their own minds about things. We don’t have much dialogue and nuanced conversation in public spaces based on our affiliations. 29:15 – Our extroverted society demands quick answers and voicing of opinion, but complicated problems require a lot of pondering and meditation, especially in the wake of a tragedy. 31:50 – Ego is always going to want to take responsibility for everything. How little control we actually have can be terrifying at first, but also creates a pathway to access better ways. The analyst says to get out of the way, let what comes through you come through you. 34:15 – Having the humility to serve and let go afterwards is the trick. Life circumstances shift, but it comes back to service, humility and getting out of the way. 36:45 – A message to those struggling to get sober; finding people who can support you and you can talk to. 39:00 – Getting the benefit of talking about your sobriety. Admitting the need for allies. Matthew Quick is the New York Times bestselling author of  The Silver Linings Playbook—which was made into an Oscar-winning film—and eight other novels, including We Are the Light, a #1 Indie Next Pick and a Book of the Month selection. His work has been translated into more than thirty languages, received a PEN/Hemingway Award Honorable Mention, was an LA Times Book Prize finalist, a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice, a #1 bestseller in Brazil, a Deutscher Jugendliteratur Preis 2016 (German Youth Literature Prize) nominee, and selected by Nancy Pearl as one of Summer’s Best Books for NPR. The Hollywood Reporter has named him one of Hollywood’s 25 Most Powerful Authors. Matthew lives with hi

    • 42 min
    Andrea Gibson

    Andrea Gibson

    On growing our love, meeting ourselves with care, and receiving the intelligent tenderness of every moment.
    2:05 - You Better Be Lightning – winner of the Independent Publisher Book Award, Feathered Quill Book Award, American Library Association Over the Rainbow, Colorado Book Award & Goodreads Choice Finalist. 4:30 - Things That Don’t Suck (Substack); Softening since high school, and over the last 10 years. Everything changing with the first buzz cut. 6:30 - Anis Mojhani – “My heart was too big for my body, so I had to let it go.”; Discovering spoken word in 1999. Dreaming of having poetry readings in packed rock clubs. 8:45 - People coming to the shows because they too were having panic attacks. Being diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and almost immediately feeling safer than ever before. 10:50 - Remission nutrition and chemotherapy. 13:00 - We don’t realize how much we are living in the future until we are confronted with our mortality. Trusting the universe and having a loving relationship with our mortality. 15:15 - Favorite medium of art – Music. It transports to an expansive place, so many feelings at once, nostalgic and enlivening. We are every age we have ever been. We are all of the ages. 17:20 - In order to offer forgiveness, I don’t have to love myself less, I can love myself more. Self love being the same thing as loving the entire world. 20:10 - Choosing compassion over anger when finding out about getting cancer. Gaining this sudden clarity. Continuing to learn. 23:35 - Learning tenderness from the places where there was a lack of tenderness. Becoming witness and having compassion for the edges. Seeing that kindness comes from offering kindness to the parts of me that haven’t been kind. 25:50 - How much to share publicly vs keeping things quiet. Feeling safety in expression. 27:35 - Drawing inspiration from everywhere. All of writing and creating is plagiarizing the beauty that is already here. What made the aspen trees is the same thing that made me. 29:40 - Short readings from Andrea – “Instead of Depression”; “Wellness Check”; Andrea Gibson is one of the most celebrated and influential spoken word poets of our time. Best known for their live performances, Gibson has changed the landscape of what it means to attend a “poetry show” altogether. To hear Gibson is like hearing songwriters play their music, their trademark honesty and vulnerability are on full display. Gibson’s poems center around LGBTQ issues, gender, feminism, mental health and the dismantling of oppressive social systems. The winner of the first Women’s World Poetry Slam, Gibson has gone on to be awarded the LGBTQ Out100 and has been featured on BBC, NPR and CSpan. Gibson is the author of seven award winning books and seven full length albums. Their live shows have become loving and supportive ecosystems for audiences to feel seen, heard, and held through Gibson’s art.
    You Better Be Lightning (2021) by Andrea Gibson is a queer, political, and feminist collection guided by self-reflection.The poems range from close examination of the deeply personal to the vastness of the world, exploring the expansiveness of the human experience from love to illness, from space to climate change, and so much more in between. You Better Be Lightning is winner of the Independent Publisher Book Award, Feathered Quill Book Award, American Library Association Over the Rainbow, Colorado Book Award & Goodreads Choice Finalist. https://buttonpoetry.com/product/you-better-be-lightning/
    Things That Don't Suck (Substack) - It's common to look around and take inventory of what sucks. This is one poet's quest to uncover what doesn't, and what shifts when we shift our attention. https://andreagibson.substack.com

    • 33 min
    Ana Flores

    Ana Flores

    On creating strong communities, pivoting out of productivity and shifting toward ease.

    3:00 – Las Founders, founded in 2022, is a Los Angeles held event for entrepreneurs focused on hearing from Latina Entrepreneurs. Meeting the expectations for attendees while sustaining event and production costs. 6:10 – Women with an entrepreneurial spirit. Disentangling the growth and rebalancing of growth through the pandemic through focused objectives and offerings. 8:10 – 2-Day event in October 2023; serving the different identities within the community. 3 Pillars – Heal, Commune, Grow. Addressing ancestral and systematic wounds through healing in community, and growing from that space. 10:25 – ‘Heal’ Track and Wellness Day; Keynote this year from Yung Pueblo. Day 1 – Thrive With Ease; Day 2 – “Connect With Your Innermost Self.” 12:55 – Transitioning from massive elaborate summits to something smaller, and more true. Prioritizing ease, and creating time and space rather than being controlled by the time and space. What comes in naturally? 14:55 – We find validation when we can ‘do it all,’ but find a tipping point when our priorities begin to need filling and we have to manage what cups get filled. How can I position myself in creation and attraction mode? 17:10 – Exploring ways to edit and make things half as long, and simpler. What does prayer mean to you? Connection. Humility to ask for help. 19:55 – Break The Cycle: A Guide to Healing Intergenerational Trauma by Dr Mariel Buqué; Breaking the cycle of abandonment – The ultimate support is the support we get from within ourselves. 21:55 – It is ok to take it slow, say no, create loving boundaries, find soft spaces. How do we slow things down? Proactively incorporating a meditation practice. 24:00 – Making weekends/time off sacred for the team collectively. Respecting your rest, space and time. Ana Flores is Houston-born, El Salvador-raised. She's worked in television production for Univision, MTV Latin America and other Spanish-language networks for 15 years before becoming a stay-at-home mom.

    When her husband was out of work and the cost of childcare became too expensive in 2009, she and a friend launched SpanglishBaby, a blog for parents raising bilingual and bicultural kids. Within a year, Flores was able to monetize blog posts for about $40 and found herself building “a small community” with fellow ambitious Latina bloggers. Soon she was actively pitching ideas to brands, connecting them with the 25-30 Latina bloggers and influencers from her online community.
    “And that’s what became Latina Bloggers Connect in 2010, with no money, with no resources,” Flores told TODAY. “I saw a path — a support system of people that were willing to open doors for each other.”
    Six years later, Flores rebranded Latina Blogger Connect as #WeAllGrow Latina, a Latina-owned, self-funded website that elevates the voices of Latinas and provides them with the resources — and inspiration — they need to succeed.
    “We really make it a point to hire within our community, because that is how we build socio and economic power,” Vanessa Santos — who joined #WeAllGrow as a partner and co-CEO in December 2021 — told TODAY. Flores and Santos believe that to see one woman grow doesn’t mean that it’s going to take away an opportunity for another. Championing “amigahood,” or sisterhood, their website has exceeded 20,000 subscribers, or “amiga members." The free online community is available for English or Spanish-speaking Latinas and offers original content, mentorship, wellness sessions, resources, connections, access to virtual and in-person events like the annual #WeAllGrow Summit, plus exclusive perks created to support entrepreneurs, creatives and professionals. Through their digital platform and in-person events, #WeAllGrow is helping Latinas turn their ideas into realities.
    Las Founders was founded in 2022 is the Los A

    • 26 min
    Micah Salaberrios

    Micah Salaberrios

    Micah Salaberrios, an expert in the field of Nonviolent Communication, has been teaching the practice since 2016. With his passion for improving the lives of others, he hosts "The Art of NVC" Podcast, and wrote one of the top-selling books in relationship conflict resolution entitled "The Art of Nonviolent Communication." His website is https://artofnvc.com.
    Micah’s belief in the transformative power of NVC has been the driving force behind his work, helping people to resolve conflicts peacefully and fostering deeper understanding in their relationships. Micah is dedicated to spreading the teachings of Nonviolent Communication to as many people as possible, empowering them to live more fulfilling and harmonious lives.
    3:00 – Finding NVC and doing this work as a profession. NVC style appreciation – acknowledging someone’s need for appreciation, encouragement, recognition and acknowledgement. “Would you like to be recognized for the unique talents you bring to this project?” 5:40 – Using NVC to get to a place of understanding that both parties in a conflict probably have the same need – to feel safe, protected, future for the children, etc. 7:20 – We mistake strategies and needs. The four steps of Non violent communication – 1) Identify the issue using observable facts, unbiased. Do not imply that someone is bad or wrong. 2) Express how you are feeling in this moment. 10:05 – 3) Explain why you feel this way – your values. 4) Make specific requests. Do not be vague. 12:55 – The observation moment (step 1) is not about the judgment of what is happening. Explore the feelings and needs inventory. 15:00 – You must have empathy for yourself. Take a moment to give yourself empathy and acknowledge the feeling to yourself when it is happening. 17:15 – When NVC is not available, do emergency self empathy – guess how you feel and why. Empathy releases the obligatory tension around parenting. 19:20 – When you notice you, or someone else, is upset, guess how they feel and why. You don’t have to be correct, but that person will feel the full force of your attention without feeling judged. 21:50 – NVC is not a thing you do, it is a shift in consciousness, a way of being. Opinions and judgments have a frequency that stimulates our ego and is not beneficial. Instead of opinions, have preferences. 24:00 – Opinions and judgments are draining. They keep us busy and steal our life force. Empathy as a first instinct is like carrying a love gun. 27:00 – https://www.artofnvc.com/; The Art of Nonviolent Communication: Turning Conflict into Connection; https://www.patreon.com/artofnvc 29:30 – Practicing the principles of NVC is an important part of learning. NVC is a technology of intimacy, compassion and closeness. 31:40 – Transforming triggers using emergency empathy. 33:40 – We are water. If we can be shaped by our environments, then we can be reshaped. Transformation happens in the moment, not the future.
    Visit Micah's Patreon Page for the NVC Practice group, as well as access to his masterful Art of NVC Online Course.  https://patreon.com/artofnvc

    • 36 min
    Leigh Marz and Justin Zorn

    Leigh Marz and Justin Zorn

    On the golden moments of quiet and the depths of healing available in silence.
    2:35 – The origins of Golden; How can we be helpful and effective in making things better? The answers lie in the silence. Writing about silence for Harvard Business Review. 5:10 – What’s the deepest silence you have ever known? Not just the absence of noise, but a presence. Notice noise, tune in to silence. 1) Pay attention to the diverse forms of auditory, informational and internal interference. Study how to navigate them. 2) Perceive the small pockets of peace that live amidst all the sounds and stimuli. Seek these spaces. 3) Cultivate spaces of profound silence. 7:55- How we can find the most pristine attention possible when is only available for a very short time. Finding presence in silence. Exploring booming and rapturous silence. 9:30 – The attention economy and its impact on presence in silence. Is life really louder? Yes, across Europe, an estimated 450 million people (65% of the population) live with noise levels deemed hazardous to our health. Every two days we produce as much information as we did from the dawn of civilization to 2003. 12:15 Our pristine attention is measured at 0 according to GDP. It doesn’t have a value unless it’s chopped up and turned to revenue. We often mistake feelings of stress for aliveness. Attention taken to its highest degree is the same thing as prayer. 15:35 – Silence is renewal. Silence can reset the nervous system. Silence is Humility. Silence is accepting that it’s ok to not fill the space. Silence is clarity. Silence is expansion. Silence is the essence of life itself when there is nothing making claims on our consciousness. 17:35 – The Creative ACT: A Way of Being; Jarvis Jay Masters, writer and Buddhist on death row for 32 years for a crime he did not commit. 20:05 – Compassion is a doorway to silence. Experiencing Covid in San Quentin. “It’s not about you right now.” 22:10 – The way to quiet the noise in these impossible situations is to quiet the responses to the noise. Silence might interrupt the sadness of never understanding ourselves. 24:10 – What helps you stop? A yoga practice, meditation practice, chanting, tea rituals, creating circumstances to be doing what you love all the time. 27:25 – Enjoy deeply what you’re doing vs being lost in unwanted distraction. Keeping connection with what animates life. Appreciation that leads to love. Holding the heart. Reconnecting to the heart and body. 30:05 – Coming back to the place where nothing is making claims on the consciousness, even in the midst of intense noise, fear and uncertainty. 32:50 – Silence and quiet can come just in a moment, and in infinite ways. Facing ourselves in silence means having the courage to become more aware of what’s been hidden. 34:50 – Getting a little closer to our intuition. Cyrus Habib – serving from a place of intuition. Turning down the noise of life in order to hear the signals of the heart. 37:00 – Getting beyond the noise of other people’s expectations. Becoming a connoisseur of creation. Attention stability and balance. 39:20 – Baelyn Neff – @allmattersofspirit – Stay with the Tea. Idea #7 – Presence is having all your energy and attention at your disposal, and not inaccessible because of worry, distraction, anxiety or chronic tension. 43:15 – Cynthia Bourgeault – Never do something in a state of internal brace. In the midst of noise, quiet down and keep going.

    Silence isn't just the absence of noise. It's a presence that brings us energy, clarity, and deeper connection.
    Justin Zorn and Leigh Marz take us on an unlikely journey--from the West Wing of the White House to San Quentin's death row; from Ivy League brain research laboratories to underground psychedelic circles; from the temperate rainforests of Olympic National Park to the main stage at a heavy metal festival--to explore the meaning of silence and the art of finding it in any sit

    • 45 min
    Daniel Shankin

    Daniel Shankin

     On the intentional integration of psychedelic experiences; supporting and educating for responsible engagement in our healing and creative expansion.

    0:42 – Introducing Daniel Shankin; Psychedelic Integration Coach; Director and Founder of Tam Integration; https://tamintegration.com 2:45 – Microdosing psychedelics as a way of treating addiction and engrained behavioral patterns. “Be Here Now” by Ram Das was the first ‘Integration Manual.’ 4:40 – Yoga practice as a tool for liberation and grounding in this body/lifetime. Naturally approaching psychedelics with coaching clients. 6:00 – https://2023.integrationjam.com; Finding community spirit and gathering online. Talking about cool and interesting topics with cool and interesting people. 8:10 – Keystone species, biodiversity and ecosystems. Wrapping our head around everything being connected. The tree shades the water protecting the fish. 10:30 – Where to begin with psychedelics — microdosing and macrodosing. Integrating in specific ways. *This is not medical/legal advice. This is not legal in many places, and there is an element of risk. https://www.youtube.com/@TamIntegration 12:55 – Take time to educate ourselves, making good decisions with the information we have, and responding to feedback from body and mind, maybe journaling around it and tracking it. Psychedelics are a nonspecific amplifier. They bring up what is already underneath our layer of awareness. The psychedelic is not making you anything, but revealing what is there. It’s an orange juice squeezer. 15:00 – We all have these very specific needs, and when the needs are met, there is a happy day. Understanding of a need becomes a transformation. 17:25 – Understanding psychedelics from the perspective of its more practical benefits. True psychedelics don’t stand for addictive patterns. They become irritating. 19:00 – Macrodosing experiences; Tam Integration – Pre and Post Integration; Long term Integration. 21:05 – Training Integration Coaches; creating an experience that is respectful of our consciousness, respectful of the molecules. There’s no reason not to approach an intense experience with a certain amount of reverence. 23:20 – Compounds in psilocybin associated with the self and persona. Compounds that scientifically decrease circulation to certain parts of the brain, increase circulation to certain parts of the brain, and it’s in promise for personal growth. Going in with a meditation practice. 25:20 – Meditators have more of the positive effects and fewer of the negative effects. Meditators are often used to putting the persona aside. 27:25 – https://2023.integrationjam.com; Save 10% with Coupon code: Elena. 30:15 – Moral Trauma; https://www.moralinjuriesofwar.org; connoisseurship of certain mushrooms.
    As the founder and director of Tam Integration, Daniel is committed to offering radically accessible and inclusive support and education for people who are wanting to transform, heal, and grow. Tam’s integration circles and online conferences enjoy a world wide audience and much critical acclaim. Daniel also leads the yearlong Mt. Tam Psychedelic Integration Coaching Program, training emerging leaders in the facilitation of transformational engagement.
    As a psychedelic integration coach, Daniel serves people in weaving their new-found truths into their lives and practices sustainably, harmoniously, compassionately and wisely. His methods are fiercely practical while maintaining space for mystery and magic to emerge. He offers time tested and scientifically backed tools so clients can create a life for themselves that is aligned with their deeper values and manifests measurable results that matter.
    He and his wife live in a tiny town in New England where they forage for mushrooms and throw rocks into creeks with their two young boys.

    • 31 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
388 Ratings

388 Ratings

@t@r@ ,

Beyond Inspiring

Elena’s thoughtful conversations with incredible people, has helped me implement a sustainable meditation practice, guided me on communication with my kids, and pushes me to love myself more. It is a huge dose of inspiration. Thank you Elena for creating and sustaining this.

Pegomy💖 ,

Thoughts & insights of her own

It seems like Elena Bower parrots her guests wisdom without much collaborative insight & wisdom of her own.

Akash sud ,

Insightful and Inspiring

I love all of Elena’s creations and offerings. She is a deep listener and an adept space holder which comes through the conversations with her guests. I look forward to future episodes.

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