Catch Darleen DuRante on the #PirateBroadcast™
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Audio digitally transcribed by Otter.ai
Welcome to the #PirateBroadcast™, where we interview #interestingpeople doing #interestingthings. Where you can expand your connections, your community, #kindnessiscool and #smilesarefree. Let’s get this party started.
Russ Johns 0:19
And it's a great day for a #PirateBroadcast™. And we have a new, a brand new pirate in the room. I'm so excited. How are you doing, Darleen?
Darleen DuRante 0:29
Good. Thank you for having me. Thank you, Russ. I'm so excited to be here.
Russ Johns 0:33
I am I'm excited as well. And you know, it's been a while, we first met, we were actually on Gabriel's, Gabriel Leal, his podcast, I think the episode that we were on went for four hours or something like crazy. It's like, holy cow. How is that even possible? We go on for four hours. Then later on, I think you went for 24 hours with the xxo podcast.
Darleen DuRante 1:06
Yeah, great, the connection is so strong, and the relationships and the bonding and just, you know, everybody really getting along and just letting their true colors come out. It's just been really a process of growth and development, finishing 2020
Russ Johns 1:22
Well, and that's an area of business that you work in is helping other people that may not be as gifted or available to work and things like that. So you're really open and empathic and, you know, kind of compassionate towards the underdog that are looking for a new adventure in their life. Right?
Darleen DuRante 1:45
Yeah, I think that's been a mission of mine my whole life. Ever since I was really young, I knew I wanted to study psychology, and understand people and help people. And I always knew that I had that emotional empathic side, where I just wanted to be around people and I ended up while I was in the military, but after the military, I really knew, I went to college, I got my degree, and I really just started in on working with individuals with disabilities, that one of my very first jobs in a group home, you know, with intellectual disabilities, and stay there for a couple years, I loved it so much, just that connection and learning how to communicate with someone different disabilities, and being able to connect with the soul, the spirit of the person, it doesn't matter on the outside, what their abilities are, you know, what their barriers were, it was just that connection. You can find that in anybody.
Russ Johns 2:44
Oh, we all have, we all have our things that we could, you know, talk about and bring up and, and that's the beauty of life is that we're all imperfectly perfect. You know, we all have our place, we all have our space. And our journeys aren't necessarily the same. However, we all have to go through our own journeys. And that's what makes us unique and individual. So it's, it's magic when you have the opportunity to find something that someone enjoys. That has to be a special gift to you. Right?
Darleen DuRante 3:23
Absolutely. And actually, now that you bring that up, I figured that for me, that's one of the ways I always start my work with someone when I'm working with someone. It's always a strength. You know, let's focus on your strengths. What are you good at? What do you like to do? What are some of your hobbies? Let's start there. Tell me what you like to do play an instrument. Do you like to cook? Do you like to read? Do you like to write poetry? So it's always, for me personally, I've always found that like, the easiest way to start building that rapport and that trust and let them know that I'm here to work on them with the positives that they have. I'm not here to tell me you know, your medical history. You tell me your disability. Explain to me why you can't do it. For me. That's just never been something. And I always tell them when they start there. A lot of people do. A lot of people want to start there when you're helping individuals with disabilities, or with mental health issues. They want to start Oh, well, I'm this and I'm that. And I have this diagnosis. And I'm like, No, no, it's, I don't need to know that yet. No, just let me get to know you. What do you like to do? Where do you come from? Tell me about, you know, are you from hear, are you from somewhere else? So it's always like that just kind of getting a feel for them and let them letting them feel comfortable and know that it's not, not here to you know, what can you do? And let me stick you in a very typical job.
Russ Johns 4:42
Darleen DuRante 4:43
Let me point you to those stereotypical jobs for people with disabilities.
Russ Johns 4:47
Let me put the round peg in a square hole.
Darleen DuRante 4:51
Russ Johns 4:52
Well, I I just have to admire your ability and your opportunity to help people like that and I know and have experienced, I have a brother, my younger brother, my only brother is disabled. And so growing up with that was challenging at times. And I always had a soft spot for the underdog and had a little bit of empathy for people that were not able to protect themselves or be there for someone else. And it's really, you know, and I don't, I don't share a lot a lot about that, because it's not all rainbows and unicorns all the time. And so it's really, it's a really powerful message, though, it really something that people have to understand that if you just have a little bit of empathy and a little bit of compassion, it can take you a long way. So I thank you so much for doing what you do.
Darleen DuRante 5:55
Oh, I love it, I wouldn't want to do anything else.
Russ Johns 5:59
I love that. And also, we were talking before the show, Darleen is that the idea that social media really has, you know, it almost amplifies the good and the bad. You know, the news is out, it's like, protect yourself, protect your, to protect your time from the intellect. And also, you know, the gaming culture. And you know, these are, there are people that are making multi million dollars, just playing games. And it's just amazing to think that, okay, somebody that could play a game really, really well can make as much as some athletes out there playing games in real life. It's just, it's a completely different world than we lived in before the internet evolves into this space, and it will continue to evolve. How have you noticed that impacting your life and, and enriching your relationships?
Darleen DuRante 6:57
Russ Johns 6:58
Darleen DuRante 6:59
it's been so life changing for all of us, I knew I had a really good conversation with some of my office colleagues before we left back in March, and I said, this is going to hit and this is going to change. This is like, almost biological chemical warfare, if you want to think about that, because they teach you that in the military, you got to prepare. So and I think Steve Jobs had predicted that this would be something that would be one of the ways that the world would change. So with that being said, I think people don't ever realize that it could happen. But I kind of knew, you know, you kind of in the back of your mind, like, what if something like this happened? So with that I embraced it, I really did. I embraced it, the camera, the video, the zooming the Microsoft Teams, I embraced it. And then you start to kind of realize that, you know, how you can use it and how, for me personally, that's what it was, it was just realizing like, wow, you know, this allows me an opportunity to reach more people. Yeah, how could I use this to, you know, work with other people inspire other people, let them know that, you know, there's resources out there, there's people out there that really care about them, that have disabilities and respect that their abilities. So, you know, I've started to you know, I've been hanging out with some of the people out there in our live streaming community. So hopefully, that's something I really want to go for in January and kick it off for 2021, maybe just on the side, being able to, but with social media, you know, you got to be able to decipher what's healthy for you and what's not. And I know when to stay away, like, social media has never really been a super important thing to me. Yeah, my focus is, is not social media or creating content, it's really hard for me to be a content creator, I don't consider myself that that's something that I would have to learn along the way in 2021, but my focus has always been people. And 2021 has allowed me to continue that and find new ways to connect with people. So and that's what I want to take into 2021 is just continuing the connections, continuing the networking, and creating something where people can find refuge resources. And comfort.
Russ Johns 9:15
It's really amazing to think how much value you can add to the community. And the pirate community has been so amazingly diverse, as well as supportive. And because we talked about so many different subjects, like we were talking about earlier, as the conversations I mean, just look at this conversation. You're one of three people that I know, that have actually worked on the C 130. Yeah, it's like, it's like, and what you're doing now is completely different than than what you're doing on the C 130. It's just like that kind of diverse environment, diverse work type, you know, the things that you're doing. All of that stuff is really, that's what builds the fabric of humanity is the diversity in your experience. So how does that, how did that experience help you now today?
Darleen DuRante 10:26
It's something I seek, I'm always looking for someone, not always, but you know, I'm always helping them find what's unique about them. Again, going back to those strengths, what's unique about you, let's find, let's build you from the inside, let's look inside first and find those internal strengths. And a lot of people don't realize that all they see is the anguish, the pain, the distress, the problems. And so you want to be that person to help them say, okay, I know, you see all the outside, but let's look inside, because there's a lot of good stuff there. A lot of good stuff there. And that's something that you want to use to your advantage. So I do that a lot. It usually starts with a resume, because I work, you know, helping people find jobs as well. And even the resume just, you know, going through that activity. It's telling, it really helps them boost their self esteem. And I really enjoy inspiring people and letting them build strength, building their own mental strength. I love mental health, I studied psychology, I went to grad school for that. But not licensed, not licensed. But the people that helping, you know, just continuing to create safer and more comforting spaces is definitely important. And using that social media to, to create that to offset a lot of the negativity, yeah, the negativity, there's a lot out there.
Russ Johns 11:54
Well, I think, you know, people slow down for a train wreck, right? they slow down or, and it's human nature, to observe catastrophe damage, things like that. And it's easy news. And it's an easy target. However, I think humanity would be benefiting a lot more if there were stories of humanity doing good things. You know, because you see it online, you see it in social media, there's a lot of posts out there where, you know, believe in humanity kind of stories where, you know, somebody does something kind along the way and along the journey. And, you know, the whole premise of the #PirateBroadcast™ is #kindnessiscool, and #smilesarefree. And it's there for a reason, because these kind of conversations might help someone out, you know, they might be listening tomorrow or next week or next year. And they might catch something that you said, or something that was in a conversation that allows them to say, I do not feel alone, I do not feel like it's you know, something I can't live through, or I can't get past. So. And that's the whole premise of what we're doing here. And, and I just, I wake up every morning, Darleen and I think, what amazing conversation can I have today? So thank you so much for being here and helping me in this conversation. Because it's so important.
Darleen DuRante 13:28
I agree. Thank you. No, it's a great topic. I'm just going back to the uniqueness, everyone has characteristics that can really they can use to shine and they can use to build their confidence. And that's so important. You got to help them find their individuality and nurture that. I think nurturing that and encouraging them letting them know that's okay. Like that different characteristic or that quirk, whatever. You know, everybody calls it something different. People do them weird. You know, I'm like, Oh, I like weird, weird, cool, like, yeah, we're all weird. You know, you hear all kinds of different things. I've heard a lot of tragedy in my life. That's something that we haven't really dug in. But you touched on it. I touched on it. Some people start with the negative and oh, well, I'm on the verge of homelessness, or I don't have a job or I can't pay the bills, or what am I going to do next month. So when you're working with people that are vulnerable or are susceptible to losing the most basic needs, like you can't help but want to say okay, you know, what can we do? Let's find the resources, you know, and that's all fine and dandy, but even just like the conversation, like even if I know I'm just gonna see them for one time and they might come and go and I'll never see them again. I do. I always want to leave like one seed of you can do it. You're going to get through this. Just remember this one thing about yourself. Yeah. And you hope that that goes with them. When I worked with kids and the system and foster TRICARE and I, that, you know, that was always something in the back of my mind, like, maybe they're gonna remember me and I do still have some foster kids or some, they're adults now they're adults now that I still have connections with that used to be my foster kids and they're like, Mr. Lean, I'm never gonna forget you, you know, How can I forget you, you know, you were there for me and one of the hearts, I was in foster care, and you always kept me going, and you always came to check on me. So absolutely, just any interaction or any conversation that I have with a person, it's always like, hopefully giving them something like a little nugget of confidence or self esteem. Yeah, I know how important that is to me. You know, I have my own mental health issues and my own things that I deal with. So like, the kindness is why I'm such a fan of this show. Because kindness is so important. It's just a value that I don't think a lot of people really focus on or really consider, or maybe even teach their children kindness, like, you gotta be kind, you know, I think you hear Oh, you got to be good. Sound be good. But kind, respect, consideration.
Russ Johns 16:08
Curious is good. It's like, okay,
Darleen DuRante 16:10
Curious is good. So just teaching kids and naming those values and showing and teaching them that you're teaching them value you're gonna use as a tool for the rest of your life. But we live in a different society now. And I think a lot of people are taught from external sources. Uh huh.
Russ Johns 16:30
Well, think about, think about this. In the beginning, at the end of the 1800s, the 1900s, in the industrial age, a lot of kids were, you know, they were tossed in the factories, there is no child protection laws there, there are no, you know, the people had a lot of kids to help out on the farm, you know, they had work to do, they had things to, to produce, and if the family didn't produce it, they didn't eat. And a lot of kids in those early days, that, you know, my parents or my grandparents generation, they were in a mindset of, Hey, kids are here to help work, and they're, that's what they're here for. And then we got to the point in the industrial age, where, you know, kids were working in the factories, and then that changed, that evolved. And then all of a sudden, schools started coming on board, and everybody was in school learning the same thing, you know, learning how to be a good role model in society in kind of following the rules and stand in line, wait, your turn, you know, be be a good person in society. And then like, when I was growing up, it was like, go outside and play until it's dark, and then come in. It's like, it's like, Yeah, I don't know where my kids are. And I remember going, I mean, the first money I ever made, Darleen was out sweeping on a construction site with a broom, I was probably about five, you know, my dad dragged me out every Saturday morning and got to work with him. And I enjoy working and I, you know, I look back on those...at the time, they weren't very fun, because I wanted to hang out and watch cartoons, you know, it was like, okay, that wasn't the case. However, it taught me a lot of things, a lot about the value of working, value of putting in time and energy and making sure that I've built homes, I've built buildings, I've been in construction, I grew up around that whole arena. And so it taught me a lot of values that I normally wouldn't get, and a lot of people haven't had experience around. So it's a blessing, you know, it's like, this is a gift that nobody, not everyone can have.
Darleen DuRante 18:51
Right. I agree. And Where'd you learn the value of kindness? Like where did you really accept and say, oh, this one, that's really dear to my heart.
Russ Johns 19:03
That's a long story. I have...let me just start off with saying, and I don't talk a lot about this, but you know, having a brother that, you know, is disabled. And also, you know, I lost my job and my marriage, about the same week. And then I went, and I took a journey. I took a sabbatical. Some people say I was homeless. I was. I lived out of my car, I traveled, I biked. I went to Mexico, built a church. I have spent time in jail. You know, I've been a fun loving criminal at some level. And I look back and I found a picture of a car I used to have, I mean, I went off the road at over 100 miles an hour. And I sheared a power pole off a ground level. And it's a much bigger story. However, the point I'm making is I haven't... there's been circumstances where I should have been dead. And I'm not. So I'm here for a reason. And I think that reason is to help others understand that you can be kind. You know, when I was in fifth grade, I was probably in a fight every single week. It was just, oh, yeah, see this nose broken? And the reality is that I had to practice this, you know, I went through a process and changes in my life that it's like, this is where, yeah, I'm going to drop this other, you know, these other things that are not serving me. And I want to I want to move into the kindness, the world of kindness and help other people see that it's okay to be kind, you know, to be more almost stoic, in a way, you know, where it's, I don't necessarily freak out about exciting things. I don't freak out about tragedy or being homeless or being, you know, it's like, okay, I don't know, I don't know how I'm gonna pay for tomorrow. It's like, you know, I've been broke. I've had money, and I've had nothing. So you know, and that spectrum, and that range allows people to see a new perspective that, absolutely, yeah, it's like...
Darleen DuRante 21:40
Well, you just shared some things, you know, that you probably haven't shared before. So, you know, that gives people a new...
Russ Johns 21:47
Darleen DuRante 21:48
dimension of you and a little more like, okay, what did you call it? I'm...
Russ Johns 21:56
Darleen DuRante 21:57
No, no, when you were in jail, a...
Russ Johns 22:00
Darleen DuRante 22:01
Yeah. Fun loving criminal. I love that. That's cool.
Russ Johns 22:05
I have had guns pointed at me.
Darleen DuRante 22:09
Right. And these are the stories that I like to get into because it was just me and you and we weren't on the air. I would be thinking more right there. I want to hear the stories.
Russ Johns 22:20
Someday, I'll tell my story.
Darleen DuRante 22:22
Yeah, no, it's okay. But I just appreciate, you know, the show with kindness and how you really want to perpetuate that value. And I appreciate you letting me be here because it's really important to me, I've tried to be very kind person, trying to be very warm and compassionate and welcoming, and, and relatable. I want people to be able to approach me. So you know, if anybody needs anything, you know...
Russ Johns 22:45
I appreciate you. And I know that others do as well, Darleen. So thank you. Thank you for being here. And thank you for sharing. And thank you for being a light in in sometimes a place that sometimes not always bright.
Darleen DuRante 23:00
Very much so.
Russ Johns 23:02
I want to give a shout out to some of the people that have joined us here today.
Darleen DuRante 23:06
Who's here? I want to know.
Russ Johns 23:07
Gehan! Hey, Hey, good morning. Thank you so much for being here. Andrew, buenos.
Darleen DuRante 23:15
Russ Johns 23:17
Fantastic for being here. Michael Baker. He's in from Florida.
Darleen DuRante 23:22
Oh, hey, a Floridian.
Russ Johns 23:23
Yes. And Angie is in the house. Love you. so fantastic. Be here. So Oh, and Jesse Roberts joined us this morning. Thank you so much. Here we go. Yeah, that's exactly where I met Darleen in the last hour of the xxo telethon where we were both on together. Oh, that's very cool. That's great.
Darleen DuRante 23:50
Russ Johns 23:58
Hello, Russ and Darlene, thank you so much. Welcome to the newest pirate, what a privilege to have you join our crazy crew. Fantastic. You know, in 2021, I want to put this out there. I'm going to plant the seed, Darleen, with you. Because I am going to create a pirate, excuse me, a pirate crew of people that want to spread this word and expand this message of kindness. And we'll be creating something special because I want to expand it. I want it to grow and flourish. Because I think right now we need it. So and then Nancy is here. Yes, Nancy. She's got up early. Nancy, thank you so much for being here. I know you're an hour earlier than we are. So she's so supportive. Love you, Nancy, thank you so much for being here. And real friendship...an incredible lady you've got in here, Russ. So glad to tune in today. I think so. I think so too. so fantastic. So Michael says #gratitude, #inspiration. So who else do we got coming in today? We've got lots of comments. Lots of comments. Melanie, thank you so much for being here. You know, Melanie's my executive producer. She's also my sister. Nick Dorsey in Arizona. Thank you so much for being here, Nick. Proud to be a pirate. Yes. Fantastic being here. So also, Lorrie. Oh, Lorrie's in the house. Great conversation. Very happy. 2021. Love you. Thank you so much for being here. Nick says, #pirateforlife. Gabriel's in the house. Gehan G, Good morning. Thank you so much, Daniel Hall. Hey, brother, Daniel. I was in Gabriel. Great episode. Thank you so much. Howard Kaufman's in the room. That's fantastic. Howard, we need to catch up. Every time I wake up and I brush my teeth, I think of you, Howard. So Howard runs this cool company called ORL. It's amazing product for mouthwash and toothpaste. And so it's like, there's a connection there. I'm just saying. He's a pirate too. so fantastic. One of the best. One of the best connections of 2020 meeting Darleen. Oh, that's so wonderful. Carol Campos is here. So this is the kind of opportunity we have to really enjoy people as they come through. And over 300 episodes, Darlene and having these conversations and conversations around kindness and I've just met so many incredible people. It's just, it's amazing. So tell us a little bit about before we wrap up. What is it that you're looking to focus on in 21? And, you know, you mentioned a few things, but I just want to make sure that we have the opportunity to... we got a visitor. Oh, so fantastic.
Darleen DuRante 27:54
He's Okay, there we go. Sorry about that.
Russ Johns 27:57
Okay. Good deal. What a precious, what a precious guy.
Darleen DuRante 28:02
Russ Johns 28:05
So your intentions, do you have some intention for 2021, helping more people do some good stuff.
Darleen DuRante 28:12
Yeah, absolutely. I would love to, you know, again, expand waste, or communicating and reaching out to people that may need some sort of assistance this, you know, upcoming year. I know that my some of my experience is rather different than a lot of what's out there. So it's kind of hard trying to figure out if it's something but it seems like it's it's being welcomed. So hopefully I can expand on, you know, that intersection with people with disabilities, employment, mental health, and just continue to be assistance and even working with businesses. I've worked with that in the past. Not really, but you know, just a little here and there with networking. And it's really important to to be available to, you know, expand on that.
Russ Johns 28:56
Yeah. Hiett Ives says are my comments coming through? Hiett, this is the first Facebook message that I saw come through. So I don't know if Facebook is having problems or not. So let's see. All right. We're wrapping up so we can do this. So thank you, Darleen for being here. I really appreciate you and I look forward to 2021 and many more conversations like this. And I'm sure that we'll have to dig into a private conversation.
Darleen DuRante 29:33
Yeah, we'll get that all figured out.
Russ Johns 29:37
We can find out a little more about Russ.
Darleen DuRante 29:39
yeah, yeah, absolutely. I'm available anytime.
Russ Johns 29:42
Thank you so much. And, as always, you know, have a moment, reach out, make connections so people can find you on LinkedIn?
Darleen DuRante 29:53
Yeah, LinkedIn. I set up a Facebook business page, silverfox talks. I have a website. Not a techie. So my website's kind of DIY. But you know...
Russ Johns 30:05
That's fine. Pefect
Darleen DuRante 30:07
And I know we haven't even talked about Dubb, we'll have to talk about Dubb some other time.
Russ Johns 30:10
Oh, yeah, we'll schedule time to talk about Dubb, one of my favorite platforms.
Darleen DuRante 30:16
Yeah, I've got so many questions about that I've been trying to explore, but anyways, yeah, LinkedIn is probably one of the better ones for me.
Russ Johns 30:24
Oh, fantastic. Fantastic. So everyone, connect with Darleen. Tell her you're a pirate, reach out, connect. She's an amazing individual that you need to know. She's very, very, very kind. And she fits right into the groove of #kindnessiscool. And so thank you for joining us. You know, we've got the rest of the week going on, we got lots of people coming in. And I would really encourage everyone to help me in 2021, get this message out. So subscribe to the YouTube channel. Like and share it. I got a podcast out there. If you don't have time to watch and sit down and watch the conversation take place, you can always listen to the podcast. And all that is available on RussJohns.com. And so go out, share it out. And you know, I want to make sure that messages like this and conversations like this, have an opportunity to reach more people and encourage you to take action and bring some kindness into your world. So, thanks again for Darleen, #kindnessiscool, #smilesarefree, and you #enjoytheday. See you soon.
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