Embracing Intensity

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Dec 30, 2019

Are you an Approval Addict? How about a Gold Star Chaser? For so many excitable people, it can be exhausting and unfulfilling simply living life under the shadow of the approval of others. If that sounds like you, listen in to this rerun installment of Embracing Intensity. This week, Aurora interviews her mentor Amy Pearson about her own struggles as an Approval Addict. Amy is a life coach, mother, and deep believer in helping women come into their own authenticity. In this episode, she dives deep into what it means to live free from approval, and gives you the tools and opportunity to be who you truly are!

Join Aurora and Amy to experience all that this episode has to offer:

  • Amy shares how she journeyed from people pleaser to fearlessly fulfilled.

  • Discover what it means to be an Approval Addict, and how to break the cycle.

  • It is time to drop the façade of likability, and start embracing that inner fire. Find out how!

  • Learn how to channel your intensity instead of pursuing affirmation from others.

  • Moms really do know best—learn what wisdom Amy embraced to change the course of her life.

  • Unlock what it means to Amy and Aurora to unearth your own authenticity.

  • Amy describes what it means to find her Tribe, and discover how you can find your Tribe too.

  • Check out your Approval Personality with Amy’s specially designed quiz.


Join the League of Excitable Women on Facebook 

Amy's New Website Being Amy The Blog (Active 1/1/20)

Sign up for updates and take Amy's Approval Personality Quiz

Amy’s Original Website

Aurora’s Website

Power Zone Toolkit

Embracing Intensity Community

Amy Recommends 

The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson

Dec 23, 2019

Would you consider yourself the “Creative Type?” Does life seem to be barely within your control? Do you ever find yourself toning down your big, grand ideas for the sake of appearance and opinion? If so, you might be like this week’s guest on “Embracing Intensity. Join Aurora as she interviews Katherine North. 

Katherine is a life coach, writer, and mother on a mission to lead women out of the creative storm of clutter and into a more beautiful, more authentic life. Her coaching allows women to stop stifling their joy, and embrace the things they truly love. Tune in to hear about Katherine’s journey across oceans and disciplines as she explains what it means to declare dominion over this beautiful life. 

Listen in as Aurora and Katherine discuss: 

  • Katherine’s journey from toned down and timid, to creatively big and epically badass. 
  • Discover how Katherine figured out how to live life in the “ethereal realm”
  • How to engage with your creativity, and let it be as big as you want it to be 
  • Find out what it takes to be a Heathen Mystic 
  • Uncover the magic of “morning pages” 
  • Find out how you can be a part of the next Queen Sweep for a more beautiful home
  • Get connected to Katherine’s weekly blog with tips and tricks for intense, sensitive, and creative women 
  • Learn the two requirements for being an EFBA 


Join the Embracing Intensity Community

Katherine’s Website

Katherine’s Book Practical Magic for Secret Mystics  

Aurora’s Website

Power Zone Toolkit   

Katherine Recommends

Parenting Without Power Struggles by Susan Stiffelman 

Steering by Starlightby Dr. Martha Beck

Dec 16, 2019

Three words: You are enough. For an intense person in today’s fast-paced and demanding world, it is easy to feel like you have to tone yourself down. Are you feeling burned up, beaten down, and bummed out? Then you need to listen to this week’s episode of “Embracing Intensity.” 

This week’s guest is Starr Sheppard-Decker, a business coach, and spiritual leader with a passion to see women fully embrace their intense selves. Through spiritual searching and a dive into her own inner psyche, Starr realized she desired attention and acceptance from others, when all she really needed was attention and acceptance from herself. Hear Starr’s wisdom and heart for women with intense passions and a fire worth spreading. 

In this episode: 

  • See how Starr’s passion for societal change has turned her into a teacher, spiritual leader, and life coach.
  • Starr shares the experiences and revelations that changed her perspective on her own brand of intensity. 
  • Feel great about how unique you are!
  • See how intensity looks in the fast paced, energetic, deep inner workings of psyche and spirituality. 
  • Learn how to live on the edge of cultural norms and present new ideas. 
  • Break the idea of categories; redefine good and bad in your life 
  • Find the right fit in your relationships. 
  • Hear how Starr found spiritual development by seeking help and healing. 
  • Learn grounding techniques and increase your emotional bandwidth 
  • Deal with false beliefs and cling to what is true. 

Starr Recommends

A Woman’s Worth by Marianne Williamson

The Mandala of Being by Richard Moss


Starr’s Website

Session link

Embracing Intensity Community

XPress Your Power Store 

Aurora’s Website


Dec 9, 2019

This month I'm taking the month off and sharing reruns of my favorite episodes from season 1. This one is particularly timely because I've been having a lot of conversations about twice-exceptionality lately.

Impossible. The world seems to throw this word at you a lot, doesn’t it? For Intense, Exceptional, Gifted, and Intuitive people, our greatest strengths are often viewed as weaknesses and disabilities. When the world tries to label your dreams impossible, what can you do to harness your fire and show the world who’s boss? Wouldn’t you like to know there’s someone who has walked that hard road before, and come out the other end burning brighter than before?  

Dr. Melanie Hayes is the founder of Big Minds Unschool, a program that allows Twice Exceptional students to thrive in their own unique gifts. Melanie is also Twice Exceptional, and she knows what it is like to be a bright fire in a world that feels too small for her. After growing up with “impossible” dreams, Melanie learned to make her vision a reality. Now she is using her fire through coaching and Big Minds to change the world. This week, she will share her stories of growing up, success through unconventionality, and wisdom to inspire you to take the word “impossible” and transform it into a force of good.

Also in this episode:   

  • Melanie grew up as an intense kid with a bit of an existential, otherworldly perspective.
  • A fascination with twice exceptional minds.
  • Working within the extremes of life, and when life doesn’t seem to want to work with you!
  • Speaking up for intense kids in schools.
  • Learning to trust yourself and your instincts.
  • Why is it so hard to recognize our gifts?
  • Overcoming fear and letting go of limitations.
  • Life-coaching a holistic being.
  • Roundabout career paths and connecting to the work you do.


Melanie Recommends

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

Melanie’s Website

Big Minds unschool

Find Melanie’s Book on Amazon!

We Tried Normal

Join the Embracing Intensity Community

Support us on Patreon

Sign up for the Free Find Your Superpower Course

Dec 2, 2019

I'm taking the month of December off again, but this year I decided to try something different and share some of my favorite episodes from season one with an update from the interviewee! This week I'm sharing one of my most popular episodes of all time with Paula Prober!

As a child, were you deemed over-sensitive, dramatic, or over-emotional? Are you a deep thinker, intellectual, or intense creative? Perhaps that just means you are gifted. Join Aurora in this week’s “Embracing Intensity” as she interviews Paula Prober, an expert on the gifted population. Paula has journeyed through many disciplines from education to counseling and now to writing. Her interdisciplinary wisdom has led to a fascinating and enlightening perspective on the mind of a gifted individual. The gifted are often intense and excitable. Paula’s mission is to show the world how the gifted adult can seek healing and live life to the fullest.  

Inside this week’s episode: 

  • Find out if you could be “gifted”
  • Learn how to apply Paula’s analogy of the Rainforest Mind
  • Find out how to discover ways to connect with your body and hone your wonderful giftedness
  • What does the Argentine Tango have to do with giftedness? Listen to find out! 
  • Learn strategies Paula suggests for taking care of yourself.
  • Discover the Healing Arts, and the key to finding a good therapist.
  • Hear how Paula changed her voice, and why it mattered so much to her! 
  • Uncover how writing, meditating, seeking therapy, and SLEEP can help you embrace your fully gifted life.


Paula’s Blog: Your Rainforest Mind

Your Rainforest Mind: A Guide to the Well-Being of Gifted Adults and Youth by Paula Prober

Paula Recommends

Belonging Here: A Guide for the Spiritually Sensitive Person by Judith Blackstone

Embracing Intensity Community

Support us on Patreon!

Nov 25, 2019

Kazmiers Dabrowski was an early proponent of what we now call the neurodiversity movement. He asserted that what was viewed as "neuroses" were not an illness, but in fact a sign of high developmental potential! His theory of Positive Disintegration views the importance of falling apart, or disintegrating, before integrating into a higher whole.

This week, Chris Wells, Director of Qualitative Research at the Gifted Development Center, dives deeper into Dabrowski's life, what led to his theory and how it applies to us in the current day. 

In this episode:

  • How Dabrowski's theory relates to the current neurodiversity movement.
  • How his own life experiences and trauma impacted his theory.
  • The importance of values.
  • The three factors of developmental potential.
  • How dynamisms, or the forces that drive our actions, serve as a catalyst to higher development.


Finding Treasure In Ruins Blog Post

Embracing Intensity Community

Gifted Development Center

Nov 18, 2019

I've been asked a lot about twice-exceptionality recently and especially on how to identify ADHD when giftedness is also involved.

In this episode:

  • Characteristics observed in people who are both gifted and ADHD.
  • Characteristics that may be common with giftedness, but are even more extreme when ADHD is thrown in.
  • Assessment patterns I've observed with kids with ADHD.


Embracing Intensity Community

Brendan Mahan's ADHD Essentials

Nov 11, 2019

Do you talk to yourself the way you would talk to a loved one? In this interactive episode, Shannon Meade shares her thoughts on shifting our inner dialog to confront our own inner critic.

In this episode:

  • What does your inner critic say?
  • What would it look like to be an ally to yourself?
  • Using affirmations effectively to shift how we treat ourselves.
  • Connecting with your own inner child.


Tweak Your Self Talk

Queen of Ease

Embracing Intensity Community

Nov 4, 2019

Growing up in a family and community of intense and onside-the-box thinkers who "got" me for the most part, I took for granted how rare that actually is. When I found myself isolated when I moved to the PNW, I had my challenges, but I was able to rebuild connections because I had made them before and new that I could.

In this episode:

  • How being isolated left me questioning my own social skills.
  • Finding community in community theatre.
  • Rebuilding after divorce. 
  • Inspiration in seeing others find community. 


Embracing Intensity Community

Oct 28, 2019

Sometimes we hold back on setting goals out of fear of what might happen if we put our energy into something and it does not pan out the way we had hoped! This week on Embracing Intensity, Clinton Fetters of Distractonaut, shares a tool to help work through our fears so we can move forward on our goals!

In this episode:

  • Reasons we may fail to set goals, or set effective ones.
  • A tool to help work through our fear around goals. 
  • Elements of a good goal.


Distractonaut Blog

Embracing Intensity Community

Oct 21, 2019

I saw Dr. Anita M Jackson speak on the stage at Spark Live last month and she shared that she was going through a major transformation right there on stage. After a multitude of achievements over the years, she was finally unleashing her full being to the world and fully embodying all parts of herself. 

I knew that Anita was accomplished and intense, but what I didn’t know until our interview was that she also was diagnosed with ADHD while she was working on her doctorate degree. She shares how her experience with ADHD and giftedness shaped the way she though in a way that isolated her growing up but led to deep connections as she was able to harness her own power. 

In this episode:

  • How shutting yourself down leads to imbalance. 
  • Connecting easily with others by seeing the good in everybody.
  • Creating stories about being “too much” when the right community does not see you that way. 
  • Caring less and less about what others think as we age. 
  • The impact of being gifted with ADHD on school years.
  • Sharing insights that teachers loved, but none of her peers understood.
  • How learning about her giftedness opened the doors to possibilities.
  • Mastering her intensity to overcome trauma.
  • Her focus on achievement led her to disconnect with herself.
  • How women over give to feel deserving of the things they may be afraid to ask for. 
  • The pattern of crashing hard right before her next bigger calling. 
  • Being the first woman in the family to earn a high degree, buy a house, travel internationally and not get married and have kids. 
  • Big dreams that started out small.
  • Personal habits that help use fire in a positive way.
  • Calling in your inner circle.


Dr. Anita M Jackson’s website

Embracing Intensity Community

Support us on Patreon

Oct 14, 2019

Our 3rd anniversary snuck up on my until I started getting congrats on Linked in! I asked for ideas on how to celebrate and got some great ideas, but between getting sick and working on my usual day off, I decided to keep it simple. Let me know if you have topics you'd like to see covered on the show!

In this episode:

  • I share about the origins of the Embracing Intensity Podcast.
  • What you have to look forward to for the rest of this year. 
  • Lessons learned from 3 years of interviewing gifted and outside the box thinkers. 


Embracing Intensity Community

Oct 7, 2019

"Motivation is something that you need over an arc of time, it's not necessarily a destination, it's something you need to bring along with you on your journey, more like a toothbrush."

This week on Embracing Intensity, I finally get to share an edited part of our conversation on Motivation with René Brooks of Black Girl, Lost Keys! 

In this episode:

  • How motivation is part of the bigger picture, not day to day feelings.
  • Moving through fatigue and burnout with motivation. 
  • Letting go of the idea that everything is a top priority.
  • How we tend to reward work with more work.
  • The importance of self-reward. 


Black Girl, Lost Keys

Embracing Intensity Community

Sep 30, 2019

Last weekend at the Spark Portland Event I attended, Ellen Yin of Cubicle to CEO said something that really stuck with me, "Know when to pivot and when to persist." I've been reflecting this week on the places in my own life and business I need to pivot and where I should persist. 

In this episode:

  • Future plans for the Embracing Intensity Community.
  • My focus for the next few months.
  • The power of understanding your own brain. 


Embracing Intensity Community

Spark Events

Cubicle to CEO Podcast

Sep 23, 2019

I met a wonderfully interesting person about a year ago. We were introduced through a women’s business group, and we chatted for hours when we met for coffee. I knew I had to get her on the show so you can hear her story and mission.

Nneka Coxeff is the editor-in-chief of Black Lace + Pearls magazine. She founded the creative lifestyle and healing arts magazine to showcase her inspirational works while merging her skillset as a writer and longtime publicist. Nneka has created a beautiful platform for other healers, professionals, and entrepreneurs to connect, build community, and share their gifts and talents with the world. Nneka aspires to inspire others to live out their desires and to turn their dreams into reality, all while owning their unique authenticity and individuality. Black Lace + Pearls magazine highlights women around the globe who make it their business to serve the world to make it a better place for all. The magazine holds a special place in its mission for female powerhouses and game-changers who are breaking barriers within their field.

Show Highlights:

  • Why Nneka is intensely passionate about her role as a married mother of five, along with inspiring and motivating others and helping people realize their purpose
  • How a former boss made all the difference in Nneka’s life by seeing something she couldn’t see in herself
  • How Nneka’s personal brand of intensity includes a lot of energy and positivity
  • Why Nneka became an introvert and a journaler due to her intuition and inquisitiveness as a child
  • How she was shaped and affected by being told to “stop asking so many questions” as a child
  • How competitiveness with yourself can be misinterpreted
  • How Nneka’s family was the only black family in a predominantly white neighborhood with some white supremacists
  • How toning down led to Nneka turning inward and leaning on journaling and writing
  • Why Nneka’s intensity is sometimes out of control in her passion for motivating others
  • How Nneka helps others see the good in themselves and advocates for authenticity
  • A look at fitting in vs. belonging
  • Nneka’s Write to Heal workshops
  • How Nneka learned to be resilient through the death of her young son
  • Why Nneka wants to help people own the losses that come in life and learn to move through them
  • How writing and meeting other intense people have helped Nneka
  • The importance of the power of self-care practices like meditation and journaling
  • The best advice Nneka has received: “Give from your overflow.” (Don’t deplete yourself or you’ll have nothing to give!)
  • Meaningful books: A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle, The Secret by Rhonda Byrne, and all of Iyanla Vanzant’s books
  • Know your intentions, know your history, and know yourself
  • Thoughts on the law of attraction
  • How Nneka helps others by encouraging them to own their talents and special gifts and put a voice to their personal stories
  • Nneka’s parting advice: “Keep doing you and living out your purpose.”


Find Nneka on Facebook and Instagram

Email Nneka:

Nneka’s website:  BLP Magazine

Join the Accountability Mastermind:

Sep 16, 2019

I've been talking lately about false images on social media and perpetuating unrealistic ideals. That got me thinking more about community and belonging, not just "fitting in." 

In this episode:

  • Perpetuating unrealistic images. 
  • "Fitting in" vs. Belonging
  • Upcoming community events that encourage being your full self!


Embracing Intensity Community

Embracing Intensity Upcoming Events

Lior Holtzman Photography

Spark Live

Black Lace and Pearls Events

Thrive With Intensity Group Program

Sep 9, 2019

When you think of intensity, you probably think of someone who is always loud and overbearing. The truth is that intense people can have a quiet nature that isn’t dominating. Meet today’s guest!

Phyllis G. Williams is the co-host of Living The Principles podcast. She’s a US Marine veteran, educator, and entrepreneur who is passionate about community. Phyllis’ entrepreneurial endeavors revolve around writing and speaking, and she’s described by her friends as “quiet, yet strong and confident.” It was a pleasure to get to know Phyllis in this interview, and I hope you enjoy!

Show Highlights:

  • Why Phyllis is intensely passionate about community mainly because she has seen how her life has been affected by it
  • How her family was Phyllis’ first community, the Marines her second, and Toastmasters her third
  • Why Phyllis’ true intensity isn’t loud and aggressive, but a quiet strength with devotion
  • As Phyllis grew up, she was a creative storyteller who was always comfortable being alone
  • How Phyllis learned values like integrity and honesty through colloquialisms in her Mississippi upbringing
  • Why Phyllis felt like she had to hide her voice and her accent for a long time
  • Phyllis’ intensity gets out of control when she is too concerned about other people’s feelings and overly concerned about her actions
  • The creative ways in which Phyllis helps others look introspectively at themselves
  • How she harnesses the power of her intensity through journaling
  • The acronym RISE for personal habits: reflect, intentions, stretching, elevate
  • The best advice Phyllis ever received was from her mother: “Don’t worry about things you can’t control.”
  • An inspiring book: One Word That Will Change Your Life by Jon Gordon
  • How Phyllis helps others through her workshop, Authenticity, and Authority
  • How her podcast helps debunk beliefs in the black community through topics like business, relationships, and unity
  • Key areas of emphasis for Phyllis are self-awareness, selflessness, and self-love


Phyllis’ website:  Progress Promoter

Find Phyllis on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram: Phyllis G. Williams or @ProgressPromoter

One Word That Will Change Your Life by Dan Britton, Jimmy Page, and Jon Gordon

Sep 3, 2019

In high school when we read the Scarlet Letter, we had an assignment to pick a letter to represent a fault or weakness of ours. I picked the letter P for Procrastination and Perfectionism. My teacher believed the procrastination part but not so much the perfectionism...

In this episode:

  • Why perfectionism and procrastination are intertwined.
  • 3 lessons learned from blogging the last 5 years and podcasting the last 3.
  • Going with your brain quirks instead of against them. 


Embracing Intensity Community

Aug 26, 2019

How much emphasis do you put on play in your life? Somehow, as we enter adulthood, we lose our affinity for play. Today’s guest has made it his mission to bring play back into the lives of busy adults, and he’s here to tell us how his intensity has made it all possible.

Gary Ware is someone I first met at the World Domination Summit this past year. People are drawn to his playful energy, and he is twice-exceptional, with ADHD and dyslexia. Gary will share how he’s learned to channel his energy in positive ways to help himself and many other people as he teaches them how to bring more play into their lives. Gary is the founder of Breakthrough Play, and he’s a sought-after corporate facilitator and keynote speaker with nearly a decade of experience as a performer in improv theater. He assists teams with unlocking creativity, confidence, and sparking collaboration with experiential methods proven to drive peak performance. Gary spent over a decade in the corporate world and originally pursued improv to master public speaking. He discovered that combining improv and play could be a powerful solution to achieve various business challenges. Naturally, he created workshops for his team and other executives in his network to deepen relationships and improve creativity. Gary became obsessed with learning how to use play as a transformational tool, and, as a result, happily transitioned from marketing to pursue facilitation full-time. When Gary isn’t leading workshops and keynote speaking, you can find him learning magic or off on an adventure with his wife, Courtney, and son, Garrett.

Show Highlights:

  • Gary’s intense passion for helping people be more authentic
  • Why people feel uninspired and unengaged at work today
  • Why finding joy in what you do is a conscious choice
  • How Gary uses his personal brand of intensity to find different ways to solve complex problems, even using hypnosis and neuro-linguistic programming
  • As Gary grew up, he was a curious and playful ball of energy, and always the class clown
  • The cultural factors that affected his intensity because he attended a different school almost every year because of his father’s military career
  • Becoming a “social chameleon” to fit in wherever he was, but never really knowing who he was
  • Gary’s identity crisis as an African-American
  • How Gary had to learn what was necessary to survive and how to operate with a filter
  • The story of an out-of-control moment of a food fight in school
  • How Gary uses his superpower of making people feel comfortable
  • How Gary harnesses the power of his intensity in being his goofy self, but always in connection with others
  • Why Gary views his ADD as a superpower now
  • Why Gary calls play “a gift” and a “form of meditation”
  • The best advice Gary ever received: “You are perfect just the way you are.”
  • Books that have helped Gary: Play DHD, The Big Leap, and The Happiness Advantage (see resources below)
  • How Gary brings playful methods to interesting situations
  • Gary’s advice for listeners: “Think about how you played as a young child, and think about how you can bring that back into your life.”


Breakthrough Play

Find Gary Ware on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook


The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor

Play by Dr. Stuart Brown

Play DHD by Kirsten Milliken

The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks

Check out Embracing Intensity for more info about the Befriending Your Brain course series, launching in the fall.

Aug 19, 2019

"We suffer not from lack, but from paralyzing abundance." A few years ago I did a survey and someone used the term "paralyzing abundance" and it has stuck with me ever since. Today we will be talking about how to prioritize when you are suffering from paralyzing abundance. 

In this episode:

  • Examining our "shoulds"
  • Questions to ask yourself when you think you "should" do something.
  • 4 ways to simplify your life.


Embracing Intensity Community

Upcoming Group Calls

Aug 12, 2019

Embracing intensity means figuring out who you are and who you want to be, whether other people like it or not. Part of the equation is figuring out why trying to fit a square peg into a round hole just isn’t going to work out well. Such is the story of my guest today who uses her personal experiences with giftedness to bring resources and counseling services to others.

Emily Kircher-Morris is a Licensed Professional Counselor in private practice near St. Louis, and her practice specializes in meeting the needs of gifted and twice-exceptional (2e) learners. Before working in private practice, Emily worked as a school counselor and teacher of gifted programming. She frequently speaks to groups of educators and counselors about meeting the needs of high ability learners, and she hosts The Mind Matters podcast, which explores issues related to the development of gifted and 2e individuals throughout the life span. I first encountered Emily through her podcast, as I was a recent guest there, so this is the perfect time to return the favor and have her on the show. Enjoy!

Show Highlights:

  • Why Emily is passionate about her career focused on gifted and 2e kids, as a mental health counselor, a podcaster, and someone who helps those who are unnoticed and unrecognized
  • The need for resources for gifted and 2e kids--and their parents
  • Emily’s personal brand of intensity and her fiercely independent “just let me do what I want to do” attitude
  • As an elementary student, Emily had an ADHD diagnosis and was impulsive, intense, and “too much and out of proportion”
  • How her mom was consistently in her corner through all her childhood years
  • How the stigma about behavioral expectations and gender roles affected Emily
  • How Emily has to tone down her intensity constantly but has gone through growing pains of being too intense
  • The life-changing experiences that have brought her reflection and greater awareness: motherhood and obtaining her master’s degree in counseling and therapy
  • How Emily feels her intensity is out of control when she feels “on the edge” and “about to tip over”
  • How intensity has affected Emily in many relationships
  • How Emily uses her experience every day with gifted and 2e clients, helping them understand and accept their intensity for themselves
  • Why Emily started a podcast and a non-profit to help with parent support for those with gifted and 2e kids
  • How Emily has to harness her power in personal and professional relationships with others
  • Why Emily had to find and use an organizational system
  • The best advice she’s ever received came from a counselor: “Don’t pretend that your needs don’t exist or try to extinguish them. Recognize and accept them.”
  • Why the book, A Wrinkle in Time, has meaning and long-term influence in Emily’s life
  • How Emily uses Carl Rogers’ “unconditional positive regard” to help her clients
  • Why we have to teach our kids to find their sense of belonging


The Mind Matters Podcast   Find Episode 37 to hear “You Never Outgrow Giftedness”

Find Emily and Mind Matters on Twitter:  @mindmatterspod  and @emilykm_lpc

Visit Embracing Intensity to join the daily challenge to bring more play into your life

Aug 5, 2019

Thanks to everyone who filled out my survey to help shape the future of the Embracing Intensity Community! This week, I share a brief overview of the results and you can find a full summary on the blog

In this episode:

  • Overview of community survey results.
  • Next steps in shaping the direction of the community.
  • Join our Summer Camp Scavenger Hunt!



Embracing Intensity Community

Jul 29, 2019

How can you use your sensitivity and intuition to program your life for success? Today’s show is about how we find more happiness, achievement, and transformation by focusing on the right things. We will also learn how each of us can make a positive impact on the world by committing to small, everyday actions.

Rachel O’Rourke is the owner of O’Rourke Media, a marketing agency for innovative, e-commerce-based startup companies. She’s also the founder and CEO of SPARK Global, an event company that facilitates self-development summits dedicated to supporting women who are ready to show up in the world. Rachel has done amazing things building community events such as SPARK Live, which I’ll be attending this fall. In her upcoming book, 27 Things, Rachel shares the 27 things that are holding women back from making their lives extraordinary and the action steps to take to spark a major shift in each area. Her podcast, Flawed Females, released in May of this year. You can hear Rachel and co-host Lizzie Keith as they captivate you with their conversations.

Show Highlights:

  • The whirlwind of events over the last two years--ever since Rachel left the corporate job she hated
  • Why she is passionate about what is possible for women that they don’t even realize
  • How women have been programmed in certain ways that can be changed to bring more happiness, achievement, and transformation
  • The difference in conscious vs. subconscious programming
  • Why Rachel believes focus goes hand-in-hand with success and that we need to be sensitive and intuitive to our bodies and to what the universe tells us
  • As Rachel grew up, she was unaware of what her mind and body were trying to say
  • The need to impress on kids the intensity of their focus
  • How Rachel as a younger person felt like she needed to tone down and not shine too brightly
  • What women tell themselves about going after jobs and accomplishments
  • How Rachel’s obsessive nature can get out of control and lead to her not taking care of herself and her family
  • How Rachel commits daily to making a positive impact in the world with small actions
  • How meditation helps Rachel harness the power of her intensity
  • How Rachel uses visualization to see what she wants to come to fruition
  • The best advice she received: “Protect your energy and set boundaries.”
  • Books that have helped Rachel: You Are a Badass and The Path Made Clear
  • How Rachel helps others realize it only takes one small thing to spark a fire
  • Why Rachel has consistent rituals each day to keep her fire and focus going: meditation, visualization, and consumption of high vibrational content in books and podcasts
  • Why you should protect your environment to keep vibrating at a high level
  • The upcoming 3rd Annual SPARK Summit in Portland in September


Rachel’s website:  Rachel O'Rourke

Find Rachel on Facebook and Instagram

Find out about the SPARK Summit: The Spark Events

27 Things by Rachel O’Rourke

You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero

The Path Made Clear by Oprah Winfrey

Jul 22, 2019

In my next interview episode with Rachel O'Rourke, she talked about the amazing things that can happen when we focus our full energy on something. With my work and summer schedule, my attention has been quite split but as I review the survey data from our audience on the direction to go next I am excited to focus my full attention on expanding the possibilities in our Embracing Intensity Community!

In this episode:

  • The challenges of having so many interests split our focus.
  • Details on the direction we're moving in the Embracing Intensity Community.
  • How you can share your input on where to focus my energy moving forward.


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Spark Event in Portland


Jul 15, 2019

Being gifted or intense means different things to different people. Today’s show focuses on many things we can do to make the world a better place for everyone. We’re talking about living our best lives in authentic ways, the natural state of flexible emotions, recognizing the strengths in others, and appreciating the neurological diversity in people.

Christine Fonseca is a licensed educational psychologist, critically-acclaimed author, and nationally-recognized speaker on topics related to educational psychology, mental health, giftedness, and using storytelling to heal past wounds. Using her experience consulting and coaching educators and parents, Christine brings her expertise to Psychology Today, authoring the parenting blog, Parenting for a New Generation. She has written self-help articles for, Johnson & Johnson, and Justine magazine. Her appearance on the popular gifted education podcast, Mind Matters, was one of the most downloaded episodes. Christine uses her fictional stories to explore the more complex aspects of humanity through sweeping romances, Gothic thrillers, and psychological horror stories. As a trauma-impacted survivor, Christine believes in the power of storytelling as a key to healing past wounds. She delivers soul-centered writing workshops to help writers get in touch with their authentic voice and bring that to both fiction and nonfiction writing. Christine’s critically-acclaimed titles include Emotional Intensity in Gifted Students, Raising the Shy Child, Letting Go, The Girls’ Guide to Breaking Free of Stress and Anxiety, and an action-packed young adult series, The Solomon Experiments. Christine lives in southern CA with her husband and children.

Show Highlights:

  • Why Christine calls herself a “super-intense human,” and how she displays her passion for helping people figure out who they are so they can live authentically and unapologetically
  • Why Christine loves to help gifted people because they are often misunderstood
  • How Christine feels things and thinks about things deeply, and why she analyzes everything
  • How she was misunderstood as she grew up, not socializing well with peers
  • How she reacted viscerally as a child to the sheer audacity of slavery and why she felt the need to apologize for the atrocities of the entire race of white people
  • How she had to tone herself down in high school, being intensely shy and “extra” at the same time
  • How she had to come clean with herself about her past trauma and who she really was
  • Why she chose to focus on and nurture her children’s EQ--not their IQ
  • Why her intensity gets out of control with weight and body image issues
  • Why she gives herself permission to be who she needs to be with her emotions in the moment, no matter what that looks like
  • How Christine is dedicated to intense people and helping them feel “normal”
  • How she learned her daily non-negotiables: contemplative practice, journaling, healthy food, movement, time with family, and creativity
  • Why we should appreciate how neurologically diverse all people are
  • Why Christine has started strengths-spotting
  • The best advice from Christine’s mother: “The only definition anything has is the definition you’ve given it.”
  • Books Christine loves: The Chronicles of Narnia, Watership Down, Shakespeare, and other nonfiction books on religion
  • How Christine differs from a lot of researchers on the topic of giftedness
  • The difference in experiencing anxious feelings and “having an anxiety attack”
  • The natural state of being flexible in and out of the range of human emotions
  • Why we need to change our tolerance levels
  • The danger of “toxic positivity”
  • How Christine helps others through her coaching, online courses, live events, speaking engagements, and books
  • “A gifted or intense person paints the world in bold colors while everyone else paints in pastels.”
  • Christine’s new book, why she wrote it, and how she researched the content 


Christine Fonseca

Find Christine’s articles on Psychology Today

Find Christine’s Facebook group: IntenseLife Community

Mindfulness and Character Strengths by Ryan Niemiec

Christine’s Nonfiction Books:

The Caring Child: Raising Empathetic and Emotionally Intelligent Children

Emotional Intensity in Gifted Students

Quiet Kids

101 Success Secrets for Gifted Kids

I’m Not Just Gifted

Shy Child

Letting Go: A Girl’s Guide to Breaking FREE of Stress and Anxiety

Healing the Heart

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