The Hey Preslie Podcast

Transforming Your Mind, Body and Soul with Donny Starkins

September 22, 2019 Preslie Hirsch Episode 28
The Hey Preslie Podcast
Transforming Your Mind, Body and Soul with Donny Starkins
Chapters
The Hey Preslie Podcast
Transforming Your Mind, Body and Soul with Donny Starkins
Sep 22, 2019 Episode 28
Preslie Hirsch

In this episode, I had the wonderful opportunity to chat with the one and only Donny Starkins (@donny_starkins). He is a personal development coach who helps others make massive transformation in their lives, get unstuck and discover their purpose. He’s also a mindfulness expert, yoga instructor, a leader in the community, and his ability to make complex concepts feel achievable is really remarkable. His signature program is called "The Shift" and he’s got another incredible program releasing soon that was born out of his experience recovering from addiction. His story of how he got into this field of work is inspiring to say the least, and I know this conversation is going to make you feel empowered and challenged in the best way possible. Enjoy! 

In this interview we cover:

  • How he pulled himself out of rock bottom, and the specific tools that helped him
  • Simple ways to practice mindfulness 
  • How to work through limiting beliefs
  • What lessons Donny would add to a public school curriculum 
  • Approachable first steps to work on self-love and mindful self-compassion (and why it’s so important!)
  • The 4 key components of Donny’s program “The Shift”: Create, Uncover, Discover, Identify
  • And more!

Resources from this episode:

If you love this episode, please share it with a friend and then leave a review on iTunes! When you’re listening, post a screenshot on social media and make sure you tag me @heypreslie, so I can thank you. :) Topic or guest suggestions for the podcast? Drop me a line on my website.

This episode is brought to you by the unique, sustainable and personal approach to reaching your goals: Hey Preslie Nutrition. Signing up for personalized, one-on-one coaching is quick and simple, and you'll be on your way to a healthier, happier you. For a free consultation, visit heypreslienutrition.com.

Show Notes Transcript

In this episode, I had the wonderful opportunity to chat with the one and only Donny Starkins (@donny_starkins). He is a personal development coach who helps others make massive transformation in their lives, get unstuck and discover their purpose. He’s also a mindfulness expert, yoga instructor, a leader in the community, and his ability to make complex concepts feel achievable is really remarkable. His signature program is called "The Shift" and he’s got another incredible program releasing soon that was born out of his experience recovering from addiction. His story of how he got into this field of work is inspiring to say the least, and I know this conversation is going to make you feel empowered and challenged in the best way possible. Enjoy! 

In this interview we cover:

  • How he pulled himself out of rock bottom, and the specific tools that helped him
  • Simple ways to practice mindfulness 
  • How to work through limiting beliefs
  • What lessons Donny would add to a public school curriculum 
  • Approachable first steps to work on self-love and mindful self-compassion (and why it’s so important!)
  • The 4 key components of Donny’s program “The Shift”: Create, Uncover, Discover, Identify
  • And more!

Resources from this episode:

If you love this episode, please share it with a friend and then leave a review on iTunes! When you’re listening, post a screenshot on social media and make sure you tag me @heypreslie, so I can thank you. :) Topic or guest suggestions for the podcast? Drop me a line on my website.

This episode is brought to you by the unique, sustainable and personal approach to reaching your goals: Hey Preslie Nutrition. Signing up for personalized, one-on-one coaching is quick and simple, and you'll be on your way to a healthier, happier you. For a free consultation, visit heypreslienutrition.com.

Speaker 1:

Most people are like a surprise to discover that they, they think they're trapped by their work, their family, um, their relationships and that they can't do this. They don't have the time, which is another story. And I would say, what if you knew that without a doubt, this actually would give you more time.

Speaker 2:

Hi Friends. And welcome back to the hey Presley podcast. Before we get started, I just have a couple of quick things. And the first is I just want to say that I appreciate you sharing this show and posting that you're listening more than I can even explain lately. So many of you have been taking a screenshot when you're listening to an episode and you posted on your Instagram story and it just gives me all the feels so much love when I see that, you know, I can look at stats on the back end of the show and see downloads and whatnot. But when I get to see real people like yourself actually listening and actually learning and getting something from this content, it just really means the world to me. So please keep doing that. And My Instagram handle is at hey Presley. So don't forget to tag me if you do cause that way.

Speaker 2:

I definitely see it also, I usually say this at the end of the show, but if you or somebody you know would be a great fit to interview for this podcast or we have a topic suggestion that you'd like me to cover and dive into on a solo show, please shoot me a message on Instagram or email podcast@heypresley.com and the reason I say that is the last few episodes that I've published, I've gotten so much incredible feedback that I really want to make sure I'm continuing to put out content that just serves you in the best way possible. If this is your first time catching up on an episode in a while or your very first time joining me on Hey Presley podcast. Um, check back to the last few episodes. There's one with Dr. Morgan Francis, coach, Dar tain Griffin and Brad show Walter and all of those were so awesome and would be a great place to start.

Speaker 2:

Also a fun fact. Episode number seven with Brie Pear, the founder of only human is the most downloaded episode in Hey PR Presley podcast history. Um, and other news, I'm actually taking off two-toned Leanna in a few short weeks for the first ever she podcasts conference. It's a three day podcasting conference and I am so excited to take in all of the valuable information and make connections that will hopefully help me continue to scale the impact of this show and elevate the experience for you as the listener. So I just thought that was a fun little personal side note. Now on to today's episode, I got to sit down with the one and only Donnie stark ens. He is a personal development coach who helps others make massive transformation in their lives, get unstuck and discover their purpose. He's also a mindfulness expert yoga instructor and a leader in his community.

Speaker 2:

And his ability to make complex concepts feel achievable is so remarkable. His signature program is called the shift and he's got another incredible program releasing super soon that was born out of his experience recovering from addiction. His story of how we got into this field of work as inspiring to say the least. And I know that this conversation is going to make you feel empowered and consider some tough questions regarding things like self love and how you're living your life every single day. I have a feeling that you're listening to this show because you like to be challenged, you like to be encouraged and pushed for a better version of you, and this podcast episode will do exactly that. Please enjoy this interview with Donnie Stark Ens.

Speaker 3:

Dani, thank you so much for being here. I'm so excited to have you. I know that you have a really interesting and powerful past that has led you to the work that you're doing. Um, but I wanted to kick off this conversation by asking about a quote that I read on your website, which I think will kind of launch us into that, which is that your past has become your best asset. So can you explain how that is?

Speaker 1:

Oh yes. Way To start it off. It's perfect. Um, yes. Wow. This, this, so my past used to bury me and guilt and shame. I have a past and we can get into the story of my past addiction. Um, but that past I was not too proud of at one point in my life, but my past has really given me this access point. Um, or my wound has given. My wound of addiction has given me an access point to a greater purpose, my purpose in this life. And so to think about how my past and some of the bad decisions that I made is the best thing that ever happened to me and actually can help others. Um, it still blows my mind today. Um, but it also reminds me that I've got work to do and you know, we are seeing it ramp up more than ever, um, with the disease of addiction. So it's just a good reminder. Like, I need to share my story. I don't need to throw it up over everybody, but I do need to share the my heroes journey or my story of recovery to remind people that they're not alone and there's a way out.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. And so guy, I would love for you to expand a little bit on what led you to addiction and then we'll get into, um, what was the difference in your journey between those that maybe are still struggling with addiction or, um, are seeking away out and how you have kind of come out the other side of that and are practicing, um, that [inaudible].

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so my story goes a little something like this. I grew up here in Phoenix, Arizona, grew up my whole life playing, um, af athletics, specifically baseball. I played baseball all the way up until my senior year at Arizona State, um, at Arizona state, 15 games into my senior year. I had what was my fifth surgery on my left knee and it was a massive surgery. I had a cadaver transplant of my meniscus, um, back in, this was back in 1999 and I was the first person in Arizona to ever have this procedure done. They're assured me that if all went well, it would be like having a new knee and I would maybe even be back playing baseball again. But the day I woke up from that surgery, I knew I would never play again. I'm from the, just the massive signs and scars of trauma to the unbearable pain.

Speaker 1:

I knew baseball was over for me and for that day and for many years after my world was turned upside down from a, from a life of just self-destructive living and addiction. And you know, it started with the pain pills, the massive surgery. I was taking 80 Percocet a week for a month for the pain. But I wasn't getting much reprieve from the pain. And a month later the doctor just cut me off cold Turkey. I didn't like cut back or anything. And, um, that, you know, two weeks after that I was staying with my mom cause I was bedridden for a month. I had to drop out of my classes my senior year. I couldn't even finish my finals cause I couldn't get there. I couldn't leave my house. I was in so much pain. Um, but to, you know, I, I ended up moving back out once my mom was done taking care of me and I moved back in with a couple of friends and one of the friends, uh, worked at a pharmacy and it was like, basically we, I could get whatever I wanted.

Speaker 1:

So that started it. Um, and it went on for many years, not just, not just pills, but that's what had its grip on me. I would wake up every day and not take 'em to get messed up, but to, to feel normal to you. Like maybe the breath does for me today. This calm, soothing sense over me. I would take the pills and I would get that feeling and for two hours I could not have anxiety or fear or be depressed. And then about two hours later, the that would start to wear off and then I would start to obsess about taking more. And that was kind of the cycle. So yeah, my life ended up getting so bad that I ended up going into Rehab and in Rehab I started to get really interested on what the heck had happened to my life. Like going from this baseball player star, that was my identity to a drug addict, where did it all go home and it, as I dove in and started to do the work of 12 step work, getting therapy and doing some of this personal development, what I came to understand was I didn't want to feel the pain and it wasn't the physical pain at the core like that had that obviously had something to do with it and I had resentments towards the doctor who kind of talked me into having this surgery and let me hang in when it didn't work.

Speaker 1:

I'm having to have the, the, the graph, the cadaver piece taken out. So the whole surgery was a wash. But you know, I'm now fast forwarding years later and letting go of the resentment I had from the doctor and really looking at my part was that I didn't want to feel the emotional pain of the loss of baseball. My identity, my purpose, the only thing I ever knew the love of my life in one day it was gone. And I had no other plan quite numbed it by taking pills and partying for, for years after that. And that is at the core, um, why, why my addiction happened, not because the doctor screwed me over and I had to take 80 Percocet. Like it was deeper than that and it was loss of [inaudible]

Speaker 3:

purpose. Yeah, absolutely. One, isn't it incredible how we can see in hindsight, all of that ripen in the moment you're just on this journey of how did I end up on this road? Um, what was the catalyst for being so inquisitive about that? I think that's a really cool question. Why did I get to this point? Like where, where was the disconnect from the person that I want to be? Um, and I think that's a huge level of self awareness.

Speaker 1:

So I think it was being at rock bottom. Yeah. Being my life being so bad that I was an isolated and didn't want to be around anybody and I don't think anybody probably wanted to be around me with just the decisions that I was making. And so when it gets so bad that my way just wasn't working anymore. Um, I had had people, family trying to intervene earlier than that and um, I just wasn't ready. Yeah. They got so bad that I was willing to surrender. I was able to see. So like that surrendering and finally saying I can't do this alone, I can't do it any more. And then surrendering to it is where the clarity was activated.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. And so what kind of steps did you take to then rediscover your purpose?

Speaker 4:

Okay.

Speaker 1:

Ooh, so, so treat rehab was the first step in the work of recovery. Part of the beauty of, of recovery. And I, and I go to one AA meeting a week. Alcohol wasn't really part of my story, but I relate to the man in AA. It is part of my foundation is not, it is not the end all be all for me. Um, I go there for, to be of service, to connect with other men, to be accountable to sponsor and help others. But for me, there's other pillars. There's other legs in the store of my, my sobriety with Yoga, mindfulness and meditation and this personal development work. Um, but um, I lost my train of thought of where I was going with that. What, uh, what steps you took to rediscover your purpose? Yeah, so in the personal development work, I fell in love with to see where I was and how I was able to create a perspective shift by not looking outside, not blaming, but really looking inward.

Speaker 1:

And Yoga had really helped with that. My Mom's the one that got me into yoga. She was trying to get me into it at my bottom and I wasn't ready and I was like, yoga is for girls and hippies. I'm not doing that crap. And that was my mindset. And then I finally did it once and I knew I would do yoga the rest of my life from a physical stand. Yeah. Little did I know what it would do for my mind and for my soul. So really yoga, Yoga is personal development. It's a physical practice too. But if you just focus on the physical, it's just going to feel physical. But it is personal development at its finest and a lot of the, the progression in my personal development came from just my work with Lululemon. Um, I'm also an ambassador for them and I work with their mindful performance team and I get to lead this stuff now, lead personal helmet yoga and meditation.

Speaker 1:

But I fell in love with it before I was working with the team. Being a Lululemon ambassador or an employee, you are in this, you get so many opportunities to do a lot of personal development work. And I just loved it. I love the clarity and the purpose and you know, attaching meaning to, to positive meaning to everything that's unfolded in my life. And seeing that like the one thing that we can control is how we see things, our perspective and diving in and looking at it and taking personal responsibility to do our part. I just love like I've, you know, at the, at my bottom and just looking back like blaming it on other people or not like keeping my side of the street clean and expecting others to change. All of these things may be miserable before. And just personal development, you know, to answer my long winded question, it started with 12 step work cause you do a heck of a lot of personal development work in that. But then the yoga, you know, the, the personal development through Lululemon has been huge and now you just, you start to dive in and there's really no turning back.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. I, uh, I really just got started in personal development a few years ago, but I, I, I've had friends that have gotten into it more along the way too. And I feel like once you start, it's just this fire hose of like all these things that you didn't know existed and resources and thought patterns that you hadn't been exposed to before. Um, that I really do feel like once people get exposed, a lot of times they end up diving in head first.

Speaker 1:

Yes. And there's no, I tell my coaching clients, there's no, once you start the work, there's no turning back because you'd start the work. You get a taste of the freedom. This goes for sobriety too. Once you get a taste for it and you find purpose in actually helping others get sober or helping up. Being of service is a big piece of the 12 steps. And so when you get a taste it, you will be get miserable very quick if you turn your back on it because you've had a taste, you've, you've had contrast and seeing the other side.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. You mentioned that you thought yoga was for women and hippies, which I think is funny. I think, uh, there's a fair amount of people that think mindfulness or meditation is for women and hippies. So what do you, how do you speak to people that maybe are new to that or, um, aren't super familiar with the difference between them and, and what they are?

Speaker 1:

Whew. Um, so I, if it's in person, I love the fact that maybe on a physical I might look like a guy's guy and I don't know what the typical male Yogi looks like, but I've been told that it's not me. Yeah, it's great that I might come off as more of a masculine physical, I'm on the outside, but to be able to teach a message to the soul in languaging that everybody can understand as part of my mission and mindfulness is the essence of it. Um, and you know, the, one of the definitions and the one I kind of stick with is paying attention in a particular way on purpose without judgment. And mindfulness is really just about waking up, being present, being present with the people around you, being present in your conversations and listening. And it's really doing everything with purpose on purpose.

Speaker 1:

And mindfulness really just wakes us up from the fact that our life only unfolds in moments, moment to moment. And if we're not present for those moments, then we end up missing out on what's most valuable in our lives. And that is huge motivation for me because I look back on how my life could have turned out. You know, there, there's friends, I've had so many friends die from the disease of addiction and that could have been me. And I think about it all the time, like what breaks my heart more than anything in the world or the friends and families that get left behind when one of their loved ones dies from the disease of addiction or, or suicide or mental illness. And I think about like what it would have been like for my mom. She had to wake up every single day knowing that her baby boy's not here. Like that just gets me. And so it's motivation for me today to get out there and share this and be present and show up and be of service. And to me, Oh, you know, this is the essence really of mindfulness.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. Oh, that's so powerful to think about that concept of, you know, your mom having to wake up with that. Um, so would you say that meditation is a way to practice mindfulness? Would that be accurate to say?

Speaker 1:

I would say it's one way. Okay. And and so meditation is a way to practice mindfulness. Mindfulness. You can practice mindfulness by the way you eat. I talk about this all the time with mindful leading says that I always use the word 20 so they say that mindful eating, you need 20 chews per bite. 20. I know. And like that's still big. More companies doing that. No, I've been a fast eater my whole life. And then it also takes 20 minutes for your brain to even feel the satisfaction of being four and it takes 20 minutes for the sensory pleasures of your brain to feel the satisfaction of being full. So mindful eating, I mean, I guess maybe I'm bringing that up first cause that's my biggest work right now. Everybody eats. So it's perfectly applicable. Well, an eating on the go and in a stress state is the worst way, the most counterproductive way we can fuel and feed our bodies.

Speaker 1:

So mindful eating and being present at your meal and putting your phone down, be present with the people at your meals like that is mindfulness. Meditation is another form. And as we know, there's a lot of different types of meditation. Yoga is mindfulness. I think all exercise can be mindfulness if you're making it really more of a work in than a workout. Um, I'll do my, my friend Adam's body lab class, which is Palazzos and I have to be way more mindful in there than in a yoga class. It's just paying attention and being present and using the breath often as your anchor to, to be in the moment. And so I think the definition, I think this is a word that's very popular. Meditation and presence present often overused, rarely embodied, and rightfully so, that we are, we live in a world that's addicted and afflicted to distraction. And so it's hard to pay attention when we've got the biggest companies in the world, pain, the smartest people in the world to create these algorithms. Right? I have your attention. So I mean, if you don't have a tool, a practice of presence, you're going to get very, very good at being distracted.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. I mean, yeah, like you said, everything is set up to distract you. Um, and I think from my own experience in nutrition coaching and being on the personal development journey, I think that a lot of people get uncomfortable being mindful because it's a level of space that they're not used to being in. Um, and that level of clarity, you know, when you have absence of distraction, I think it can bring up things for a lot of people. Have you noticed that in your coaching?

Speaker 1:

Oh yeah. So this is, um, yeah, it's big. So a lot of people struggle to be alone, to be, to get quiet, to do nothing. Cause when all the noise and all the doing and the striving quiets down, the truth is revealed. And a lot of people don't want that. So we will distract ourselves by being busy, by going and jumping from partner to partner or you know, looking for love outside of ourselves because we can't fill the void or we can't fill what's, you know, empty inside of us. So we go out and we look for it outside of ourselves. And that can be in so many different forms. And so, yeah, I, it shows up a lot and I think when we can be happy being alone and doing nothing, like we're in a good place, um, yeah, the truth is revealed and a lot of stuff comes up. And so people don't, don't want to sit in meditation. They don't want to be alone. They don't want to not be in a relationship. And the big myths is that we need to get good with ourselves because the most important relationship we'll ever have is the one we have with ourselves. I think a lot of people forget that.

Speaker 3:

Yeah. Um, I, I totally agree and you know, something I did want to ask you, um, later, but this is a perfect segue, is about, um, the story that we're telling ourselves. And, and I, that's a concept that I just came across maybe a year or two ago that has been really powerful for me and I catch it a lot with my clients and friends. And, um, so I'd love to hear you expand a little bit more on that, on, on what that means and how you coach somebody through, you know, I think, um, and I, and I won't speak for other people, but I think there's a fair amount of people that think I just can't call my mind or I like being busy or it's not a problem that I go from partner to partner. Like it's the story they tell themselves when really there's something deeper there. How do you kind of coach people through be getting clear on those?

Speaker 1:

Um, yeah, I would start and say that the only story that matters is the one you tell yourself. And so whatever we practice grows stronger. If we're in the practice of telling ourselves where the victim telling ourselves we're too busy or we can't do that or I can't quiet down my mind or the really common one and coaches coaching is I'm not good enough. You know, I'm not enough. And a lot of this is usually childhood stuff that we've been told at some point and it's usually not our voice. It's usually somebody else's. Um, but we have control over our thoughts. Let's the one thing we do have control over, um, but it takes practice. Like the thoughts go crazy and we think about a lot of things, but we do actually have control over them. I don't have control over mine when I'm not paying attention, but when I am present, like I can actually notice what I'm thinking about without being lost in the storyline.

Speaker 1:

And I think that's what it is. It's about noticing like mindfulness. A big piece of it is noticing what you're thinking about without getting caught up in the story or the movie of it. Because we can tell ourselves whatever one thing, I'm not good enough. I'm not pretty enough. And you know, there's a lot of power in that because most likely we've been saying that same thing for many, many years. But awareness is the first step in creating any kind of change, personal development, Yoga, meditation. It's all about awareness. So if we are, if we're in some type of practice that creates more awareness, well we can actually notice it. And the moment that we notice that we're not in that thought anymore, we're not that far. But you know, our thoughts create our world. And it really, everything that arises starts with our thoughts.

Speaker 1:

And if we're not sitting and actually noticing what we're thinking about or thinking what we're thinking about, then we're not even, we're just in them and they become our reality. So I think, yeah, the story, the only story that matters is the one we tell ourselves. And you have a choice. You can practice gratitude, you can see the good, or you can do the opposite and just see the lack and be the victim your whole life. And if that's your story, then guess what? You're going to get to be the victim a lot in your life.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. And you know, you mentioned that something that you coach people on a lot and I know that you do transformational life coaching, um, in what scenarios are seasons of someone's life? Is that something that they should look for? Um, is someone like the work that you do? Like what kind of things are people going through that they seek that kind of help?

Speaker 1:

So if I think about when I asked the question, like what is it that you want, you know, in 90 days or what, or what, what, what if, what this would be the best investment if you got this typical question I would ask. And a lot of it is, I mean, it's inner stuff, it's inner peace. It's sometimes it's, you know, lose 15, 20 pounds, but there's something even deeper for that typically. But the coaching, so usually, so the shift is my coaching program and typically somebody stuck. So a big piece is there's a story they're telling themselves and there's something that's stopping them or slowing them down from getting what they want. And most likely that something is a story or it's a story that's created self-sabotaging beliefs or um, actual actions that keep you stuck. Yeah, a lot of it. Um, people want, um, they're stuck in a job.

Speaker 1:

They're stuck in a relationship. They're just stuck. They don't know their purpose. This is another huge one. Yeah. What is my purpose and purpose is a, well, it's a broad statement and it can be many things. I believe that our purpose is within us. I also believe that our purpose is not static. It's dynamic. So our natural gifts and talents, those are pretty pretty. Those are our core beliefs are true. Like what our core values are, the things that are pretty steady. But how we implement those natural gifts and talents in the evolution of our lives is what continues to evolve. And so purpose is a huge one. And I think what I am seeing a lot is people are living somebody else's purpose, typically their family, with their parents, um, or they're just what society said that they needed to do or what they needed to have in place in order to be happy.

Speaker 1:

And so they, they're stuck in somebody else's purpose. And if you're not living your own purpose, you're living a passion was life. The moment we get in our purpose, like everything changes. And so purpose is a huge one that I love to teach on and, and coach on. And it seems to be coming up a lot more. But I, you know, and I think a lot of the coaching when I look at those answers, it's, it's emotional and mental stability, that inner stability and inner strength, which has to do with inner peace. Absolutely. I don't know if that answered your question, but there's so much there, but a lot of it is they're just stuck.

Speaker 3:

Totally. No, that's great. Cause I think that, um, like the kind of transformational coaching that you do, I f I feel like maybe it isn't always the first thing people think of, but it might be the thing that they need as when they're trying to, if somebody feels stuck in a job, they might think I need to find a recruiter or I need to talk to my friends or I need to, um, find a way to like my job more when the notion of getting emotionally unstuck or working through those self limiting beliefs might not be the first thing they think of. So I think it's cool if we can call out, you know, if you're feeling stuck in x, like this could be a really cool option for you that maybe you haven't considered before.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. Uh, that's, that's a perfect point in just the even allowed rate on that. One of the other answers that will come up is, you know, be in a loving relationship and that's great. Like that is something that might happen. It might not, but let's start with the relationship we have with ourselves. How has your own self love practice? What are the things you say to yourself? How do you talk to yourself? Are you your own best friend or do you beat yourself up when you are feeling inadequate or challenge or facing a tough situation? Like we will show up for our friends if they mess up, they do something stupid like the way we talk to them. But if we do it the way we talk to ourselves, it's completely different. So I'll often talk about the three elements of mindful self compassion, which are number one, self kindness, which means to put a supportive arm over your own shoulder when you're struggling, like you would a friend who messed up or struggling.

Speaker 1:

The second piece is common humanity. So this is connection. Knowing that we are all flawed works in progress. Part of being a human being is you're going to suffer and you're going to go through tough times. And so I can think back to my rock bottom and thinking, I'm the only one going through this. I'm the victim. No, you know, and nobody else knows what I'm going through. But actually no, this is what connects us all as humans. That we all go through stuff. So that common humanity piece. And then the third is mindfulness. And when it comes to self compassion, we want to stay with the pain or stay with the challenge long enough to actually meet it with a little bit of awareness and self compassion. So not like numb ourselves. Go date somebody else, go drink or do drugs and not feel it.

Speaker 1:

Cause I like to say in order to feel our bodies, we have to heal our bodies. Um, and so yeah, that, that last piece of it, but we also don't want to stay with it so long that we become over absorbed with the story. Yeah. So, so it doesn't become your truth. So there's a balance in that last piece, but I love those elements of self compassion, mindful self compassion, which I think Kristin Neff, um, created it and her mindful self compassion handbook, which is amazing. Um, but yeah, so I, I can't credit that, but that is, um, there's some amazing knowledge there. And we do a lot of work in mindful self compassion because everybody wants love. And if you're not in a loving relationship or you are, you're looking for that, well let's start and let's start loving ourselves really hard first. And then there's a good chance, like at least you're not seeking for it outside of yourself. Yeah. Aliens dumping that you can fill yourself and then you got a better chance of being in alignment with a, a partner who you're supposed to be with.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. And I will, um, I'll look that up and link that in the, in the show notes so people can look that up as well. What kind of things, you know, I think it's so powerful to hear you say that self love is so important and it's one of the first things you have to do before, um, seeking that from a partner. What kind of things could somebody do today, tomorrow, this week if they're listening to this and they're like, yeah, that's something I really need to work on. Like what would be like a really approachable first step or two for somebody that knows that something like self love or self compassion is, is a big area of opportunity for them.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I would, I would first get real honest and just ask the question, what am I doing for myself today to, to, to pamper myself or to unwind and then, and then maybe ask, um, what are the things I am not doing well I know I need to be doing for me to fill my own cup. And then I would look at like, what's stopping you? And then that there's awareness there and then you'll have a little bit more awareness. Um, a lot of the stories I hear, um, are around, maybe it's a parent or a mom or a dad who feels like they're being selfish because they want to go to yoga or they want to go work out or they want to go on a yoga retreat or they feel selfish because they have to leave their family. And I would say it's actually selfish not to go do those things. It's selfish not to go get your pedicure and get a massage and do the body wear. Because if you don't do that, then your family is getting you at 10% depleted, tired, resentful, and at an empty cup. And it's really, really hard to give from an empty cup. So fill your cup and change your story. It's not selfish, it's selfish not to take care of yourself. If we want to love and love hard and show up, we've got to show up for ourselves first. It has to start within [inaudible].

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. Oh that's so good. I just want to like underscore that that's so important. Um, I know that your program shift includes four main components which I wrote down were create, uncover, discover and identify. So can you, um, and in as much detail as you as you'd like, kind of talk about why those are the four and expand a little bit on what each one means.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. So create a sense of clarity of where you want to go and how you're going to get there. Um, create that clarity. Again, this is all comes back to awareness. Where you want to go is like Kinda like your why and it doesn't have to be a location, but like where do you want to go in life? How you're going to get there will actually unfold how it's supposed to. But in that creation, getting your why, I you know, when your why gets bigger than your, how the how will actually take care of itself. So when we can really anchor in our, why are the big motivating factor, the why underneath the why, like why are you really doing coaching? Why are you really paying this amount of money? You know, too, why do you really want to be in a, a relationship, you know, or why do you really want to have inner peace?

Speaker 1:

And if you keep asking why, a lot of the answers come back to like, well I want to be the best mom I can for my kid. And then I'll say, well why is that important? Well, I, my mom wasn't that for me. She wasn't there. So there's like, now you're getting somewhere where it's like you're, you're a y and when you can get, when it's something bigger than you, you will do what you need to do for yourself to get there. Knowing that yes, this is for my kids, but I can't do it unless I'm first take care of myself. So that would be the creation. The uncover is like the number one thing stopping you or slowing you down from having the life you desire. So awareness what's getting in the way. So what's in the way is the way. So let's go there.

Speaker 1:

Like let's what is getting in the way or what are the old stories? What are the old beliefs? You know, is it, is it something you're in a relationship you're in? Is it the work you're doing that isn't your purpose or it isn't in alignment with your mission? So knowing what's in the way, creating awareness around that. Um, discover that the essential building blocks so that are the essential building block blocks that are going to develop a powerful vision for the life that you want. The life of your dreams. What are the building blocks? For me or for what I would teach? Mindfulness, meditation, Yoga, personal development, new habits. Journaling every morning, journaling every night, having a gratitude practice. This work isn't like five hours of homework every week. These are new habits, rituals, and routines that you implement during the week. You put them into practice. The tools only work if you aren't going to use the tools.

Speaker 1:

And so it's not like you have, most people are like surprise to discover that they think they're trapped by their work, their family, um, their relationships and that they can't do this. They don't have the time, which is another story. And I would say, what if you knew that without a doubt this actually would give you more time, you know? And so the magic of coaching happens in between the sessions. I didn't want, I always like to use the acronym how honesty and open minded and willing, which was derived. I got it from the 12 step program. Um, but I use it in my own coaching cause I would, I would tell all my coaching clients, if you go all in on honest honesty, openminded and willing get honest with yourself, get really honest and get honest with your coach. Find a coach that you feel comfortable being raw and real and honest that you're not going to feel judged and you feel like you're in a safe space.

Speaker 1:

Be Open minded to taking suggestions. You're getting coaching because something isn't working out. Something's not going the way you want it. And so being open minded to a different perspective is going to be the key. Oh. And then willingness is the w and that is, I have little equation, willingness equals freedom. The more willing I am to do the work, the more willing I am to take direction, the more willing I am to be of service and to show up the more free I can be. And so like go all in on those and you will get everything that you want. The moment we are doing things your way. Again, like you gotta take a step back and then identify the last piece. So this would be like identifying what maybe it's foods or lifestyle habits or thoughts or beliefs are actually keeping you stuck and even weighing in your body down physically, energetically and really looking at those too.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. That's so good. One of the things you said that I want to call out is finding a coach that um, you don't feel judged that you feel safe with. What kind of things can somebody look forward to see if a coach would be a good fit for them? Or what kind of questions would they ask or, or just like personality traits? Um, like how would they identify? I just think that in this space, um, it's grown so much that there's so many people that have gone through really amazing transformations and, and are seeking a way to help people kind of go through the same thing. And so I think as the space continues to grow, finding somebody that you do feel safe with and not judged by so important. So how can somebody do that? What kind of things should they consider?

Speaker 1:

Well, I think they should, you know, if they can access their intuition or if there's a message out there that's really resonating with them. If it's posts they're seeing, if it's a talk they heard or a podcast that they heard and there's something that just really is nailing them in the heart in a good way and that they resonate with. I think that that's, that's the, the first step is just finding somebody that, um, and maybe has a similar story maybe. I mean, I would say only a quarter or a little less than a quarter of my coaching clients are actually in recovery sure. In sobriety. Um, so I think it's just resonating with the message, feeling like, I mean, I, I, I will share my story with my coaching clients and I'll let them know like, there's no judgment here. You know, I, I can tell you the things that I did in the depths of my addiction, I have no right to judge anybody.

Speaker 1:

So you are in a safe space in your, in a confidential space that there's nothing you're going to say that's going to ever surprise me because I've been down in the depths of, of like the own hell I've created. So no judgment and just, you know, someone that I think, um, if it is these things like mindfulness or yoga or if it's another, another route, you know, maybe it's a spin instructor that you love spin and she's, you know, she's teaching a message or she, he sharing a message and you're resonating with it. Like if you want more of it, go get more of it. Yeah. Just ask him, ask the questions that are on your heart and just be present for the answers and you'll, you'll get the answers of whether that's your coach or not. I believe that.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, absolutely. Listening to that intuition I think is really good. And, and following that, I think we all have those people that we gravitate to on Instagram or the certain Yoga instructor or the spin instructor, like you said, where we'd love to go to their class and it's like listening to that, you know, why is that, what is the message that's resonating with your heart? That's good. Um, a question that is a little more off topic but I'm excited to, to hear your answer is, um, I was thinking about the upcoming generation of people in the public school system or even private school system, but just people in grade school that, um, go through so much judgment and bullying and, and things in school and that mindfulness and meditation were things that I didn't get exposed to until far after my time in school. So if you were given the ability to create content or curriculum or something like that to, to get more involved in, in the school system, what kind of things do you think we need to be teaching grade school kids? And you can kind of define whatever age group that is, um, as you see fit. But what kind of things would you love to see added into the school system?

Speaker 1:

Um, my very first subject I think I would probably put like love your yourself. Self-Love. I was never taught how to love myself. I wasn't taught these things in school. Um, that's, that's a huge piece of it. Like, how do we know and what tools can we have to, to use to, to, to make sure that we're taking care of ourselves. Self love is a huge one. Focus. So mindfulness, mindfulness, you know, this is all mindfulness, but meditation, you know, punishing kids through deten detention or punishing them, you know, having them sit in meditation and have an uh, a better intention on why they're getting, why they got in trouble and letting them actually sit in it. Um, so and meditation, Yoga, I absolutely, um, the self-love. So those, those two would be my main ones. Um, and then I think just like the, you know, the mindful self compassion, like those components, you could use those, those three components.

Speaker 1:

And you could have a whole curriculum on that. I'm, it's really cool. My brother, mom and sister all teach at the same charter school off. I'm right here in x and my brother teaches, I will go in and teach, but he'll teach yoga to the kids all the time. Wow. Yeah. And just to see the impact it has on them. So he would bring them, they would go to recess and then bring them in and do meditation after recess or they just lay in Shavasana for five minutes. State how their state would change from the difference between recess straight back into class and a a five minute Shavasana or a five minute meditation after recess. And then to class it was like night and day difference. Five minutes. Yeah. And so just getting kids to slow down to know that they are not their thoughts getting that whole common humanity.

Speaker 1:

We're all struggling, we're all suffering I think would get kids to bully less and actually show up for each other more and not feel the, the pressures and you know, I personal development as a whole I think should be in there and you know, in languaging that kids could understand. But you know, the more we know who we are, the less the opinions of other people matter, the less we'll fall into peer pressure and are doing things just to be accepted. You know, understanding like what's most important to us. And then we stay true to our purpose and core values. Even as a young, young elementary school kid, you're less likely to get swayed from that because you're actually practicing a little bit. Sure. Doing math all day, learning history, right?

Speaker 3:

What a cool concept to come in from recess and meditate like after you get all this energy out to come back and get centered before you try and start learning again. I have so many teacher friends that I know it's really easy to get frustrated feeling like kids have all this energy and they're not moving enough and teaching them through yoga. You know what really mindful movement is and how to become focused using your thoughts. That is just so cool and something that you know, you never learn all the way through college.

Speaker 1:

Never, never learned any of this stuff and it's, you know, we didn't have it. They have access to it more than ever and I think it's, you know, in the public schools getting past this whole idea of it being some type of religion or whatever the fight is. But I have another sister that is a fourth grade teacher up in North Phoenix and she, she implements this all the time in a public school and the effects in the pot, the positive effects his hat or are mind blowing for for her. So hopefully we're making you know, way even and you would think that this would be the most important subject of all subjects, but you know, maybe we'll get there one day soon.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. That's so cool. You know, um, growing up I had a lot of health issues and when I would be in a lot of pain at night, um, on a school night or just be super uncomfortable, my mom would walk me through at in, in retrospect, I can tell it was a meditation. Um, but at the time I just thought my mom was Kinda goofy and she would walk me through, she'd have me close my eyes and lay on my back and walk me through like the sun being on each part of my body and relaxing and letting go of tension and being really intentional with my thoughts of feeling good. And it was so powerful for me. And I remember telling friends about it and it sounded really weird. And then as I got into this personal development journey, I was like, wow, that was, that was like meditation and mindfulness when I was in grade school and I didn't even know that's what it was. And it was powerful for me.

Speaker 1:

And so I think even if we can find ways to expose it younger and ways that, um, people could really benefit from it, that it could just be so incredibly valuable. Yeah. That's so cool. So your mom was teaching it to you way before it was even cool. Yeah. It's funny because my mom, when I was, when I was bedridden and she was taking care of me, my knee was swollen bent and I had to be in one of those CPM machines that would extend for half the night and then the other half and that I'd be out of it. But my knee was swollen bent and I was have these crazy dreams cause I was on all these pills that I was like fighting. And I remember kicking my leg out in the middle of the night and then just be dying in tears, like crying in pain and my mom doesn't know what to do.

Speaker 1:

So she taught me the just the breathing technique of counting your breath. That was actually for me the first taste of any kind of meditation or yoga that I've got and I, and it worked. Like I would actually go to sleep for a couple hours. I guess our moms, both of them are mom taught us, taught us the way. Isn't that crazy for it was even cool. On a future note, what are you really excited about right now? So I'm most excited about in the next month I'm going to be launching an online coaching program, PR Po Program called the shift into sobriety. And so this will be a 90 day online program, 12 weeks. It'll have the 12 steps implemented in it partially, but it also has a ton of mindfulness yoga videos, audio meditations, and a lot of this amazing personal development work that I've done myself that's just been so impactful, um, on my life in a positive way.

Speaker 1:

And so now to provide that content and give people access to, you know, anybody who's, you know, one, maybe it's just emotional sobriety or actual sobriety from substance or sex or shopping or I think we're all addicted to our phones, so maybe we all could use this, but I'm super excited to, to launch this program and really leverage technology to meet my mission of casting a wide net and getting this out there. Because I've had two friends in the last childhood friends in the last two months, overdose and die from the disease of addiction. And so it breaks my heart, but it lights a fire under me. Like I've got to do more. I've got to step up and got to do more. And I think a lot of people might go to treatment. They might go to Rehab for 30 days. They're in a safe space.

Speaker 1:

They think they've got this thing knocked, they get back into the real world and they get away from honesty, open-mindedness and willingness. And I started to do things their way again and they go right back into the addiction. And then their families are forced to pay another $30,000 for Rehab. And so my idea, one of them is to give this as an aftercare program so you have your 30 days in treatment. Maybe, maybe you don't need to go to treatment and maybe you can actually dive in and do this work and be willing enough to do it that you don't have to spend $30,000 that you can actually be free. And so it's just using and implementing all of the stuff that made the greatest impact on me in a 90 day program with gratitude and journaling and all the meditation, Yoga, um, in a 12 week program. So I'm super pumped about that probably more than anything right now.

Speaker 3:

That is so cool. And I love that you are using, you know, finding meaning in that suffering with your friends to light that fire of I need to be, I need to be building this. People clearly need this. Um, and I think it's a really interesting call out that when someone is in a safe space for those 30 days, that the, um, there probably isn't a great integration process. You know, it's, it's Kinda like, um, when you go on a yoga retreat, it's a lot easier to be more mindful cause you're away from everything and then you come home and life's in the way and then you're like, why aren't I being as mindful and practicing yoga like I was at the retreat. So teaching these things in 12 weeks through their regular life I think is really neat because I think that a lot of people struggle with, it's really easy to be fully immersed when you're at, well, I shouldn't say easy, easier to be fully immersed when you're at a retreat or a business conference or a motivational conference or um, at, you know, Rehab. But then when you get back to real life, it's a lot harder to implement those things.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, you nailed it again and again. And I also think that we talked about the kids that this next upcoming generation with how they're growing up. And with the, the, the s mote smart devices, technology, their apple, their, their i-phones, but also their parents who are on their IP phones who are not giving the kids the attention that they need. So now the kids, their development is being impacted because their parents are distracted. So this I, it breaks my heart, but this is, this disease of addiction is not going anywhere anytime soon. And knowing what's coming ahead, that gets even more inspiration to make sure that all generations have access to something that maybe it's not just all 12 step, like the mindfulness and Yoga and meditation is an essential part of my program. Um, it is, it's as important as the 12 step work that I do. So why not just take everything that I feel in my heart has given me an unshakable foundation for today and share it with the world.

Speaker 3:

I love that. So good. Um, what do you believe are the ingredients of a fulfilling life?

Speaker 1:

So fulfilling life is living life with purpose on purpose and being, living a fulfilled life. It's for, for, for, for me it's not about me. And at the core of the disease of addiction, they say it's selfishness and self-centeredness because you'll put your drink, drug, whatever it is before anything else. And where I find freedom is being of service and helping others. And My, my teacher Sean Korn would ask the question, how dare we not? And that's a pattern interrupt for me that I'll use often when I'm not being willing all in, on willing and willingness. How dare I not share what's been so freely given to me. I found a way out and people are dying from this disease and parents and families are having to pick up the pieces the rest of their lives. And so how dare I not share this? Like that is fulfillment. And that is purpose for me. And the fact that my past and all the things I did have, uh, given me an ability to actually help others. Like I better get out there and do some stuff or it'll go away and I don't want it to ever go away.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. That's so good. Thank you for sharing that. Um, and just a moment I'm going to ask you where people can sign up for the, um, the rehab course or the, the recovery course and all the other things that you have to offer. But I do want to, um, plug for you. I was on your website doing research for this, uh, interview and I downloaded your Freebie from the, from when you enter your email and it was like, um, mindfulness and meditation guide and it was tons of really valuable free information. Um, and from following you on Instagram, I know you're always posting really helpful free information. So, um, if someone is new to this world, I just want to plug you for you and say that just following your content I think is really valuable and a great starting place. So, um, where can people follow you and sign up for all the good stuff that you're offering?

Speaker 1:

Yes. So my website is just my name, it's Donnie [inaudible] dot com. It's Donnie with the y, Ideo and then y s t a R K I n s.com. My Instagram is just Donny underscore stark ans on my website there's different things on the Menu Bar with the coaching program, the shift, there's um, I do public like public speaking, corporate mindfulness talks, um, lead retreats, whether they're my own retreats or corporate retreats or other companies, retreats. I will often lead the content for that. Um, what else? The, the coaching program, the shift into sobriety. So in about probably two weeks they'll be acts. I'm hoping in two weeks it'll be launched and be live. But you can, if you just followed me and stay up to date, it will be on there. On my website too, there's a space where you can download, download for free meditations. So there a guide to mindfulness and then there's four free meditations. And either way you have to put in your email address and whether you want to continue to follow me or not, I'm totally up to you. But you can access those meditations there too.

Speaker 3:

Awesome. Thank you so much for being here today, sharing that, continuing to live your purpose. I know that it's impacting so many people.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, thank you. Oh and the other retreat, which I have a retreat called lovers and I do every year. I didn't Cham it resort in Sedona. Um, there is one, there's two sessions. One of them is almost full, but the sixth January 16th through the 18th up in Sedona and chairmen resort myself and Danielle Nagel, who's the director of mindfulness for Lululemon is going to be actually co-hosting that with me. And if there was anybody I can hand pick to lead this with me, she's, she's the one, she's mind billowing and has become a friend and one of my teachers. And so I'm just excited to bring her along and gift her to some of the community that I'm hasn't ever met her here in Phoenix.

Speaker 3:

That's amazing. And Sedona, what a beautiful place to do that and all the info for that is on your website.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's all on the upcoming events page.

Speaker 3:

Awesome. Thank you so much Dani. I appreciate your time.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, thank you. I enjoy talking to you. I could talk him about this stuff all day long with you

Speaker 5:

before you take off, just a few quick things first. Thank you so much for listening to this entire episode. Creating this podcast brings me so much joy and I just have the most sincere appreciation for you listening, supporting the show and hopefully getting something out of it. Don't forget that any resources or tools mentioned in this episode are conveniently linked for you in the show notes and you can find those in your podcast app or at [inaudible] Presley creative.com/podcast please share this episode with a friend and then screenshot you listening and posted on your social media or your Instagram story and tag me at Hey Presley so I can see that you're listening and thank you personally. And if you really want to spread the love and you're listening on your iPhone, please take just a couple moments, leave a review in your podcast app that gives us so much fire to continue working on this and lets me know what you're liking and what you want more of.

Speaker 5:

Lastly, if you haven't already, don't forget to hit subscribe so that each and every time I post a new show, your phone will give you a sweet little reminder to listen in. If you have questions for me or suggestions for the show, find me on instagram@haightpresleyorshootanemailtopodcastathaypresley.com this episode is brought to you by Hay Presley nutrition, the sustainable and practical approach to reaching your goals. My Nutrition coaching company was founded on the basis of empowering you to be successful longterm through accountability, real life strategies, teaching, and a holistic approach. It's month to month. It's entirely personalized. You work directly one on one with a coach and there's no templates or meal plans or cookie cutter, just what works for you. Pop over to hey Presley, nutrition.com to see some of the amazing results that clients have achieved and to schedule a free phone consultation with a coach to see if it's a good fit for you. Exclusive to listeners of this show, enter Promo Code podcast, all one word. When you sign up for a sweet discount on your first month. Thank you. Make it a wonderful day and I'll catch you on the next episode.