99 episodes

Meet leaders who recognized their own pain, worked through it, and stepped up into greater leadership. Each week, we dive into how leaders like you deal with struggle and growth so that you can lead without burnout or loneliness. If you're eager to make an impact in your community or business, Rebecca Ching, LMFT, will give you practical strategies for redefining challenges and vulnerability while becoming a better leader. Find the courage, confidence, clarity, and compassion to step up for yourself and your others--even when things feel really, really hard.

The Unburdened Leader Rebecca Ching, LMFT

    • Education
    • 4.9 • 53 Ratings

Meet leaders who recognized their own pain, worked through it, and stepped up into greater leadership. Each week, we dive into how leaders like you deal with struggle and growth so that you can lead without burnout or loneliness. If you're eager to make an impact in your community or business, Rebecca Ching, LMFT, will give you practical strategies for redefining challenges and vulnerability while becoming a better leader. Find the courage, confidence, clarity, and compassion to step up for yourself and your others--even when things feel really, really hard.

    EP 98: Ecosystems for Change: Embracing Generative Conflict in a World on Fire with Deepa Iyer

    EP 98: Ecosystems for Change: Embracing Generative Conflict in a World on Fire with Deepa Iyer

    What is your relationship with conflict and disagreement?

    Do you see conflict as bad or dangerous or simply a natural part of relationships and being in a group or on a team?

    What helps you move through conflict and differences of opinion when things are heavy and charged? 

    Do you avoid it at all costs? Or do you try to be a peacemaker and help everyone feel heard? Or do you dive right into the arena and take a stand for what you believe? 

    You probably vacillate between all of these depending on the topic, the people you are around, how you experienced conflict growing up, and the combination of your unique personality, temperament, gender, race, class, etc.

    Today’s guest shares a framework that offers a way to contain our overwhelm into some actionable practices that can help you connect to your purpose and your values while navigating the discomfort of disagreement, high-stakes decisions, and deep exhaustion.

    Deepa Iyer is a South Asian American writer, strategist, and lawyer. Deepa leads projects on solidarity and social movements at the Building Movement Project, a national nonprofit organization. She conducts workshops and trainings, uplifts narratives through the Solidarity Is This podcast, and facilitates solidarity strategy for cohorts and networks.

    Deepa’s first book, We Too Sing America: South Asian, Arab, Muslim, and Sikh Immigrants Shape Our Multiracial Future, chronicles community-based histories in the wake of 9/11 and received a 2016 American Book Award. Deepa’s most recent book, a guide based on the social change ecosystem map that she created, is called Social Change Now: A Guide for Reflection and Connection.

    Listen to the full episode to hear:
    The three main components of an ecosystem-based approach to social changeHow an ecosystem creates a container where we can have uncomfortable conversations around our valuesWhy a clash in values isn’t an indicator of an unhealthy ecosystemHow ecosystems for social justice allow us to play to our strengths even in urgent times sustainablyQuestions to ask and red flags of an unhealthy ecosystemWhy finding joy in the midst of heartbreak is essential to sustainable movementsWhy it’s key to consider who holds power inside and outside an ecosystem when calling out bad behavior or policy
    Learn more about Deepa Iyer:
    WebsiteSolidarity Is This PodcastWe Too Sing America: South Asian, Arab, Muslim, and Sikh Immigrants Shape Our Multiracial FutureSocial Change Now: A Guide for Reflection and ConnectionInstagram: @deepaviyerX: @dviyer
    Learn more about Rebecca:
    rebeccaching.comWork With RebeccaSign up for the weekly Unburdened Leader Email
    Resources:
    (Un)known Project TrailSolidarity Is This: Truth Telling From The Banks of the Ohio River with Hannah Drake and Josh MillerMeena AlexanderHonor, Thrity UmrigarThe Hundred Years' War on Palestine: A History of Settler Colonialism and Resistance, 1917-2017, Rashid KhalidiThe Mountain Goats - This YearBorgenThe Outsiders, S.E. HintonNothing Gold Can Stay, Robert FrostThe Social Change MapBuilding Movement Project

    • 1 hr 7 min
    EP 97: Releasing the Need to Prove: Arielle Estoria's Journey to Authentic Leadership

    EP 97: Releasing the Need to Prove: Arielle Estoria's Journey to Authentic Leadership

    Do you find yourself in a constant state of proving? Proving that you are a good enough leader, parent, partner, fill in the blank? 

    Do you know what drives your need to prove to others and yourself? 

    When does the need to prove you are good enough and worthy enough show up the most? At work, in your relationships with others, or maybe in your relationship with yourself?

    When you fall into a constant state of proving your worthiness and value, your unaddressed relational wounds fuel an excessive need for validation and recognition from those around you that exhausts and leaves you in an excessive loop of hustling, anxiety, and doubt. 

    But when you commit to doing the work to understand your underlying motivations to constantly prove yourself, you can release these burdens and develop a more secure, confident approach to leadership, relationships, and conflict resolution in all areas of your life.

    Arielle ​Estoria (she/her) is a poet, author, actor, and model. Her motto, "Words not for the ears but for the soul" stems from her dedication to remind anyone who encounters her work that words are meant to be felt and experienced not just heard, with a specific heart in empowering, encouraging and making space for audiences of women to feel free and at home in their own bodies.

    Arielle has shared her work through custom spoken word pieces, workshops and themed keynote talks with companies such as Google, Sofar Sounds, Lululemon, Dressember, Tedx, the SKIMS campaign by Kim Kardashian and more. She has consecutively emceed annual conferences and has led various writing, embodiment and self-acceptance workshops in various settings ranging from students to professional development spaces.

    Listen to the full episode to hear:
    How Arielle has worked to cut ties with people pleasing and learned not to constantly explain herselfHow Arielle defines “secure proving” versus “insecure proving” in her lifeHow we can try so hard to prove ourselves that we forget the self we’re trying to proveBalancing performance and authenticity online, and how social media makes it hard to show up as your full selfHow Arielle defines success for herself, outside of the linear path through life that she was taught
    Learn more about Arielle Estoria:
    WebsiteInstagram: @arielleestoriaVagabonds and ZealotsWrite Bloody, Spill PrettyThe Unfolding
    Learn more about Rebecca:
    rebeccaching.comWork With RebeccaSign up for the weekly Unburdened Leader Email
    Resources:
    Thicker Than Water: A Memoir, Kerry WashingtonCleo WadeSula, Toni MorrisonJamila WoodsMaddie ZahmReservation DogsOnly Murders in the Building

    • 1 hr 10 min
    EP 96: Rage to Action: The Leading Power of Women's Anger with Soraya Chemaly

    EP 96: Rage to Action: The Leading Power of Women's Anger with Soraya Chemaly

    What is your relationship with your anger? 

    How much of your stress and exhaustion is fueled by repressed anger and rage? 

    And how do you respond when those around you express anger?

    Our experiences early in life, experiences at our places of work and education, and our conditioning from culture all play significant roles in how we view and respond to anger and rage within and around us. 

    And for women–especially Black and brown women–we learn our anger and rage come off as unbecoming and distancing, which can be the death of a promotion, a deal, or financial advancement.

    Many experience firsthand the negative impact of expressing our anger, which can bring about a dangerous backlash that can impact not only our well-being but also our safety. 

    But when we shift the focus from seeing anger solely as dangerous or something to be feared and instead befriend and learn from it, so much changes in how we lead and do life.

    Today’s guest wrote a beautifully written and well-cited book documenting the impact of suppressed rage in women on themselves and those around them. 

    Soraya Chemaly is an award-winning author and activist. She writes and speaks frequently on topics related to gender norms, inclusivity, social justice, free speech, sexualized violence, and technology. She is the former Executive Director of The Representation Project and Director and Co-Founder of the Women’s Media Center Speech Project, and also the author of Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women’s Anger, which was recognized as a Best Book of 2018 by the Washington Post, Fast Company, Psychology Today, and NPR.  

    Listen to the full episode to hear:
    How suppressing anger harms more than just the individualHow rage is justified and tolerated differently for men and womenHow niceness and a focus on the feelings of others is socialized into girls from an early ageThe anger that hides underneath stress, disappointment, and other ways women minimize their angerThe long-term impacts and risks of suppressed anger on physical and mental healthLearn more about Soraya Chemaly:
    WebsiteInstagram: @sorayachemaly​​Rage Becomes Her: The Power of Women's Anger
    Learn more about Rebecca:
    rebeccaching.comWork With RebeccaSign up for the weekly Unburdened Leader Email
    Resources:
    Braving the Wilderness, Brené BrownReproduction, Louisa HallDo You Know Me By Heart, Cameron AveryJames Blake - Say What You WillImogen Heap - Hide And Seek

    • 1 hr 13 min
    EP 95: Good Trouble: A Personal Account of January 6th with Officer Harry Dunn

    EP 95: Good Trouble: A Personal Account of January 6th with Officer Harry Dunn

    When you experience injustice, how do you respond? 

    Do you immediately speak up and fight back?

    Maybe you get introspective and go deep into reflection, weighing out different options and scenarios before deciding how or whether to take action. 

    Or do you suppress your authentic emotions and maintain a facade until you have figured out your next move?

    Many factors inform how you respond to threats and injustice–your values, life experiences, personality and temperament, identities, and privileges–to name just a few.

    Today’s guest moved me profoundly with his responses in the days, weeks, and months following the January 6th insurrection in the face of many critics, threats, and risks. Not speaking up would have felt inauthentic for him, leaving him feeling out of alignment.

    New York Times best selling author, Harry Dunn,served in the United States Capitol Police from 2008 to 2023. He has been on duty for presidential inaugurations, joint sessions of Congress, State of the Union addresses as well as hundreds of peaceful protests and demonstrations.

    For his role defending the Capitol on January 6, 2021, Dunn received the Presidential Citizens Medal, the Congressional Gold Medal, the Capitol Police Service Medal, the Capitol Police Achievement Medal, the Gus Heningburg Award from the African American Chamber of Commerce in New Jersey, and the Concerned Black Men Award. He has been outspoken about his experience, testifying in congressional hearings and speaking in the media about the violence he experienced that day and its aftermath.

    His memoir, Standing My Ground: A Capitol Officer’s Fight for Accountability and Good Trouble After January 6th provides a firsthand account of what happened that day and the ramifications it has on our political and legal systems, democracy, communities, and individuals. 

    Listen to the full episode to hear:
    How Officer Dunn knew he needed to move from isolated and processing the events to speaking outHow Officer Dunn has navigated using his anger a purposeful forceThe fine balancing act of speaking as a citizen versus as a Capitol Police officer as he took his story publicHow speaking out and testifying at trials and in front of Congress was both a painful and ultimately healing experienceThe values and faith in democracy that keep Officer Dunn going back to work at the Capitol
    Learn more about Office Harry Dunn:
    Twitter: @libradunnStanding My Ground: A Capitol Police Officer's Fight for Accountability and Good Trouble After January 6th
    Learn more about Rebecca:
    rebeccaching.comWork With RebeccaSign up for the weekly Unburdened Leader Email
    Resources:
    Michael Jackson - We're Almost ThereSaturday Night LiveBlack Panther: Wakanda Forever

    • 1 hr 4 min
    EP 94: 2023 Debrief of Space and Pace

    EP 94: 2023 Debrief of Space and Pace

    What worked for you in 2023? What did not work this year? 

    What data did you collect about yourself, your work, and your relationships? 

    What do you want to take into 2024, and what do you want to leave behind? 

    Yes, it’s that time of year when I share one of my favorite and most fruitful practices of looking back and looking forward - my annual debrief.  

    My debrief practice teaches me the power of pausing, reflecting  - especially on my words of the year, and honoring lessons learned, victories achieved, and wounds that need care so I can look forward more clearly and confidently. And this year taught me a lot. 

    Listen to the full episode to hear:
    How focusing on space and pace challenged my tendency to associate my identity with what I doThe challenges that came up as I really forced myself to slow down and reflect on what I want life to look like in an upcoming season of transitionExperiences this year that were fun, healing, and joyfulThe practices and supports I’m carrying forward into 2024What aspects of Space and Pace are bearing fruit as 2023 comes to a close and what I’m focusing on for 2024
    Learn more about Rebecca:
    rebeccaching.comWork With RebeccaSign up for the weekly Unburdened Leader Email
    Resources:
    How I've Changed My Thinking About Burnout, Anne Helen PetersenOn the life that wants to live in you., Laura McKowenParker PalmerStephen CoveyConspiritualityMaintenance PhaseWhy Is This Happening? with Rachel Maddow​​Prequel: An American Fight Against Fascism, Rachel MaddowFriendsNyadAre You There God? It's Me, Margaret. Sitting in Bars with Cake AirCocaine BearYou Are So Not Invited to My Bat MitzvahBoston StranglerOld Dads BarbieGuardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3Ant-Man and the Wasp: QuantumaniaThe FlashIndiana Jones and the Dial of DestinyFinding YouSomebody I Used to KnowFleishman Is in TroubleBased on a True StoryThe PowerDeadlochThe DiplomatWednesdayShiny Happy People: Duggar Family SecretsThe Murdaugh MurdersThe Last of UsCase HistoriesThe TowerClass of '07Jury DutyHuntersYouPainkillerDaisy Jones & The SixBosch: LegacyOnly Murders in the BuildingLessons in ChemistryThe Morning ShowShrinkingThe Lincoln LawyerBodiesQueen Charlotte: A Bridgerton StoryThe Mother

    • 42 min
    EP 93: Beyond Words: Unveiling the Layers of Storytelling Leadership with Ali Edwards

    EP 93: Beyond Words: Unveiling the Layers of Storytelling Leadership with Ali Edwards

    As you approach the new year, do you focus on results-oriented New Year’s resolutions, or do you prefer to set broader intentions for the year?

    In a time where we are overbooked, over-committed, and weighed down by all that is going on in the world, messages promising the results we crave can make us vulnerable to feeling like we are doing something wrong for feeling out of sorts because we do not do life in a prescribed manner.

    So many offerings are a recipe for failing in our hopes for end-of-the-year plans.

    Yet, finding a focused practice for examining how you manage your time and make decisions that align with your values and how you live and experience life can delight you while bringing you clarity in a chaotic world.

    Ali Edwards is the founder and CEO of Ali Edwards Designs. Her passion resides in that very special place where the stories and images of life intersect. Her work includes writing, photography, teaching and memory keeping product design.

    Listen to the full episode to hear:
    How Ali’s background in graphic design influenced the visual storytelling of memory keepingWhy Ali is drawn to the everyday stories and not just big milestone momentsHow Ali decides what to share publicly and what to keep privateHow Ali handles consent in documenting the lives of her kids and familyHow the shift from blogging to social media has shaped what and how Ali shares from her lifeWhy Ali chooses a word to guide her year How Ali stays grounded while “taking the temperature” of those around her
    Learn more about Ali Edwards:
    WebsiteInstagram: @aliedwards
    Learn more about Rebecca:
    rebeccaching.comWork With RebeccaSign up for the weekly Unburdened Leader Email
    Resources:
    The Emotional Lives of Teenagers: Raising Connected, Capable, and Compassionate Adolescents,Lisa DamourRemarkably Bright Creatures, Shelby Van PeltDavid Kushner - DaylightThe BearJury Duty The GooniesSixteen Candles

    • 1 hr 9 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
53 Ratings

53 Ratings

Rosenstein Dana ,

The Unburdened Leader

Rebecca approaches each subject matter, each episode, and each guest with curiosity, compassion and courage. Her podcast explores important and complex issues that impact all of us. Keep listening and you will learn what it means to lead with open hearted energy and a strong back. The Unburdened Leader podcast brings much needed hope for leading ourselves and each other.

Dugan Richards ,

Enlightened relationships!

Wow oh wow, what a great listen as Rebecca unfolds delicate questions on relating to partners, friends, business colleagues. Toni Herbine-Blank answers them in clear and understandable ways. I was moved by the recommendation to listen in to our own shame and fears first before making a request based on “you aren’t meeting my needs!” and so appreciated the rupture and repair aspect. I’m looking forward to listening more (to podcast AND to my partner)!!

ASDMOMMA19 ,

Episode 77 is a must listen

I love the Unburdened Leader Podcasts. This most recent episode is amazing. I can completely connect with almost every point. My son and I are identified as being on the spectrum. Our biggest struggle right now is the fact that my son tries so hard to give the world what it wants and then the meltdowns occur in the car on the way home. As an educator, and as a parent, I wish that everyone in education would listen to this podcast. Thank you!

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