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Embracing Intensity

Use your fire without getting burned.
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Now displaying: March, 2020
Mar 30, 2020

My guest today is doing great things in the field of education. I’ve come across his work in the gifted and twice exceptional circles, and I knew he would be a valuable guest on the show. I’m happy to have connected with him around his work in teaching critical thinking skills.

Colin Seale was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, where struggles in his upbringing gave birth to his passion for educational equity. Tracked early into talented and gifted programs, Colin was afforded opportunities his neighborhood peers were not. Colin uses lessons from his experience as a math teacher, later as an attorney, and now a keynote speaker, along with his work as a contributor to Forbes, The 74, and Education Post. He’s the author of Thinking Like a Lawyer: A Framework for Teaching Critical Thinking Skills to All Students. Colin founded thinkLaw, a multi-award-winning organization to help educators leverage inquiry-based educational instruction and strategies to close the critical thinking gap and ensure that they teach and reach all students, regardless of race, zip code, or what side of the poverty line they are born into. When he’s not serving as the world’s most fervent critical thinking advocate, Colin proudly serves as the world’s greatest entertainer to his two young children, and as a loving husband to his wife, Carrie.

Show Highlights:

  • Why Colin is intensely passionate about wanting to fix things for people and help them find solutions
  • Colin’s personal brand of intensity revolves around his strategy about “how we get there” regarding critical thinking
  • In his growing up years, Colin heard many “he’s gifted, but” statements, but not many “he’s gifted, and” statements
  • How Colin was labeled for his intense behaviors instead of being supported
  • How we’ve created a culture where conformity is the expectation, but many kids don’t fit these standards
  • Cultural factors around Colin’s intensity include his family heritage of Caribbean immigrants from Barbados and their British tendencies, which teach passivity and non-confrontation
  • The urge and commitment to end generational poverty through education
  • How Colin had to tone down and tune himself out in third grade when he was labeled as “extra”
  • How Colin dealt with setbacks and disappointments by overcompensating
  • Why Colin is committed to galvanizing educators to run on “high” and equipping them with the “how” of helping kids unlock their critical thinking potential
  • Colin’s book is available for pre-order now on Amazon; it comes out on April 30
  • How Colin helps harness the power of his intensity by learning to be authentic within himself
  • The importance of giving people permission and courage to be who they are
  • The need to be intentional in helping kids learn entrepreneurship and innovation
  • Colin’s professional and personal habits in using his fire for good include weekly one-hour innovation meetings with his team and taking a moment to press “pause” for times of creativity and innovation
  • How Colin helps others stop focusing on what they want to do, but on how they want their professional lives to look, feel, and be managed
  • Parting words from Colin: “We shouldn’t talk about an ADHD diagnosis or being intense or extra as a defect. If we could transition in education from thinking about what’s best for ALL kids to thinking about what’s best for EACH kid, then we can help each child achieve excellence, however that is defined for them.”

Resources:

Think Law

The latest Embracing Intensity workbook on Balancing Your Time and Energy is available in the Embracing Intensity Community. Our live group call on this topic is scheduled for Saturday, April 11, at 10:00 am Pacific.

Check out the Embracing Intensity Facebook page for upcoming events!

Thinking Like a Lawyer: A Framework for Teaching Critical Thinking to All Students by Colin Seale

 

 

Mar 23, 2020

With all the unexpected changes this last week, a lot of us are finding ourselves working from home. This is definitely a challenge for me because I'm used to having the structure of work schedules and deadlines to keep me on track. I decided to explore how to create my own structure in times of chaos on my blog, Youtube and the Embracing Intensity Podcast.

Highlights:

  • Taking care of your body.
  • Identifying your "big rocks."
  • Creating accountability.
  • Creating separate spaces for work and rest.
  • Building new rituals & routines.
  • Giving yourself grace.

Links:

Blog post on Finding Structure in Times of Chaos  

Embracing Intensity Community and Accountability Group

Mar 16, 2020

I connected with today’s guest on Facebook, and then we met in person at a conference last September. We have so much in common! We are joint members in several communities, we’ve moved from working with children to working with more adults, and we’ve both been busy in the past year refining what we want to do and how we want to help people.

Molli Osburn is better known as “Molli the Math Rebel,” formerly “Molli the Math Lady.” She is an author, public speaker, and transformational coach. As a former math teacher and tutor since 2006, Molli is the author of Beyond Math Anxiety: 99 Insights (and a Calculation’s Not One!) She specializes in spreading awareness of the widespread problem of math anxiety and its deeper cousin, math shame. Recently, she started exploring the connection between math shame and money shame, especially among women. She’s been sober since January 2019, and that progress is a vitally important part of her journey. In her spare time, Molli enjoys hiking, traveling, crafts, and gluten-free baking.

Show Highlights:

  • Why Molli is intense about math, but also about helping people understand the social aspects of math anxiety and math shame
  • How Molli wants to help people find social and emotional solutions
  • How Molli is passionate about everything and obsesses over little details
  • Why math anxiety is not an academic problem with an academic solution
  • Molli’s experience in growing up as a math, science, and STEM person with social anxiety
  • How negative feelings and attitudes are passed down through generations
  • How Molli’s passion extends to eradicating sexism and gender bias in math, science, and STEM
  • Molli’s experience in growing up with Jewish AND Catholic parents---the best and worst of both worlds
  • How Molli had to tone herself down and tune herself out because she was too intense and passionate about everything
  • How Molli’s intensity got out of control when she wasn’t clear about her message
  • The difference in math anxiety and math shame
  • How Molli got sober a little over one year ago
  • The connection between math shame and money shame, especially for women
  • How Molli educates people about math anxiety and math shame, helping them connect through stories
  • Molli’s struggles with mental health
  • Why a morning routine is vital for Molli’s mental health; it includes tech-free time, essential oils, coffee, and morning journaling
  • Books that have helped Molli: The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine Aron, The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, and Judgment Detox and Super Attractor by Gabrielle Bernstein
  • How Molli helps others with their goals, thoughts, and feelings in healing their wounds and transforming their stories to empower them

Resources:

Molli The Math Rebel (website in progress)

Beyond Math Anxiety Book

Find Molli the Math Rebel on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter

The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine Aron

The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron

 Judgment Detox by Gabrielle Bernstein

 Super Attractor by Gabrielle Bernstein

 

Mar 9, 2020

Do you have a fixed mindset or a growth mindset? This week I explore a question brought up in our Embracing Intensity Community around Carol Dweck's Mindset theory and how it relates to gifted and twice exceptional individuals. 

Highlights:

  • The limitations of growth vs. fixed mindset and how it relates to innate ability.
  • How gifted and twice exceptional individuals can benefit from aspects of growth mindset.
  • Exploring mindset theory in relation to Dabrowski's theory of positive disintegration. 

Links:

Embracing Intensity Community

Bookstore

Threadless Apparel & Accessory Shop

Mar 2, 2020

Those who have been affected by trauma are the people who truly understand the extent of the big emotions that come with trauma. It’s refreshing when someone uses their background of self-doubt and shame to help others heal. Such is the story of today’s amazing guest, so join us to learn more!

Rayah Dickerson hosts the podcast, Depth of Echoes, which is a mental health podcast that is a wonderful resource for the mental health community. Rayah is the anxious, semi-depressed wife of a guy with schizoaffective PTSD, and she’s a trauma-informed mom, ally, researcher, writer, activist, and national speaker. I was privileged to be on her show this week as Rayah interviewed me; now I’m returning the favor. She was recently diagnosed with ADHD, which is a common experience for many creatives.

Show Highlights:

  • How Rayah is intensely passionate about learning, evolving, and finding the best ways to heal from the trauma that we face every day
  • Rayah’s husband’s mental crisis which happened 3-4 years ago and awakened Rayah to a huge need
  • Rayah’s personal brand of intensity, which is shown in love as she figures out how to heal each person
  • Rayah’s recent ADHD diagnosis and how it manifests itself
  • The common thread through many people with ADHD and how they can help each other
  • The importance of using a planner
  • How Rayah’s experiences in childhood created a lot of internal shame, manifested in sarcasm and making her afraid to get help
  • How Rayah was affected by her religious background, which included many rules for women
  • The shame Rayah felt when she was told to calm down and be likable and pleasant
  • How Rayah’s intensity is out of control in dealing with her oldest son, who also has experienced trauma
  • How Rayah shares with people around her and tries to utilize the benefits of community
  • How to learn useful coping techniques from people in marginalized communities
  • Rayah’s personal habits that help her deal with her intensity
  • The best advice Rayah received was from a nurse who told her to be an advocate in the mental health community to help others
  • Books that helped Rayah: Surviving Schizophrenia by E. Fuller Torrey MD, The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk MD, and True Inclusion by Brandan Robertson
  • How Rayah helps others by giving them permission to talk about their issues
  • How Rayah helps people see that life with mental illness can still be beautiful
  • Parting words from Rayah: “You can change your internal dialogue, improve, and heal.”

Resources:

Depth Of Echoes 

Find Rayah and Depth of Echoes on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Patreon, and YouTube

 

 

 

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