Catch Tamara Zoner on the #PirateBroadcast™
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Introduction: [00:00:00] 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: [00:00:10] And it's a fantastic day for a #PirateBroadcast™ and we have another pirate in the room. It's awesome to have you Tamara, how are you?
Tamara Zoner: [00:00:21] I'm wonderful. How are you, Russ?
Russ Johns: [00:00:23] I'm very well, very well. So you're in from the great white North and share a little happiness here. So I want to dive in and find out a little bit about what your focus is. Tell people about what you're coaching people on and how happiness is part of that exercise, because it's so important these days to find a little happiness.
Tamara Zoner: [00:00:46] I agree. And my focus is really on helping people understand that they can have greater happiness in their lives, no matter what is happening around them in their personal lives, nationally, all over the earth pandemic. What matters is that we take ownership of our happiness and with simple steps, we can create more joy in our lives, no matter what's happening. And so that is what I really try to help people understand and move toward.
Russ Johns: [00:01:19] It's really nice to be able to think, cause it's a different perspective, how can I find a little bit of happiness or joy in my day? And it doesn't take much, a lot of us are very, very easy to get along with and it's really part of the process that we have to think about. Okay, happiness is coming from the inside, not the things we have. And then I might get excited when Amazon prime drops off a package or something like that. However, that's a fleeting moment. So how is it that we are going to go through this process and explore ways that we can maybe enhance our happiness.
Tamara Zoner: [00:02:00] What I teach specifically is how to be happy for no reason. So those Amazon packages make us happy for a good reason, and those are wonderful, but those can be taken away from us. So if that Amazon truck doesn't come by, or we lose our job, or we get divorced, then our happiness goes with those external circumstances. We want to create that inner happiness that you were talking about so that no matter what happens, we still can get into that mode of happiness and feel that internal sense of peace and wellbeing every day, regardless of our circumstances. And we do that through creating habits that support it. Those actions each day and it starts with kind of cleaning up your mind. Our brains aren't always our friends and people don't know that, people don't know necessarily how we're wired, since our cave man days, with a negativity bias and they just go around with all these negative thoughts, never questioning them. And so one of the first steps is to actually, after you decide that you're going to take personal responsibility for your happiness and stop blaming and complaining about everything else in the world and the other people in your lives, then you have to bring more awareness to how your mind actually works so that you can get it on your site.
Russ Johns: [00:03:24] You know, it's really what you said, kind of triggered a thought. And one of the things that I do is I wake up with #gratitude. I take a moment and really pause and think, oh man, I'm alive. I have a roof over my head. I have a place to sleep and all my needs are met. Essentially, everything I need is here and just framing your day. That way, for myself anyway, has a tendency to really appreciate and offer a little bit of assistance with the overall view of how I feel about my day. Starting the #PirateBroadcast™, talking to interesting people and having people just kind of join in. Start a conversation and expand on that. Sets the tone for my day. And is there another way that there's things that you can think about or try or approach?
Tamara Zoner: [00:04:29] Yes. Yes. #gratitude is fabulous because it really does with practice, create new neural pathways in our brains so that we automatically start to look for more positive things. And essentially what you're talking about is setting an intention for your day. My morning is going to be beautiful. I'm going to feel expanded. Before you ever even opened your eyes, you can place your hand on your heart and think what's my intention for today. How do I want to feel? Not just, what are you going to do today? What will you tick off your checklist, but how do you want to feel as you move throughout your day? And so it's setting that intention. You start with a #grateful heart. I start with yoga and meditation because I want to feel good in my body. And I want my mind to be clear. And I love to end the day with #gratitude because no matter what my day has been like, if I think I had an awful day, when I sit down and take five or 10 minutes to actually physically write down what I'm grateful about, the cool thing is our brains don't know the difference between what's real or imagined. So we re-experience those moments that we're grateful for and we bathe ourselves in that goodness. And then we sleep kind of marinating in all that's going well in our lives and what's beautiful. And then you wake up, so the cycle keeps going, you wake up feeling good, then you set that intention and then rinse and repeat.
Russ Johns: [00:06:03] I like that. I like that. And so I should probably think about starting and ending with #gratitude. I meditate as well. So, have a little meditation, I need to fit the yoga piece in.
Tamara Zoner: [00:06:16] Well, it doesn't have to be yoga, but we know for sure from research and studies, that exercise benefits our brains. It benefits our moods and works as effectively as most antidepressants, for most people. And so movement of any kind is going to also put us into better shape. So we have seven areas of happiness and one, in the course that I teach we're framing it like a house. So we have our foundation, which is that taking responsibility. Then we have the pillar of the mind. The easy one here is don't believe everything you think.
Russ Johns: [00:06:53] Your mind is not always your friend.
Tamara Zoner: [00:06:55] It is not. And so we need to learn to, as a practice, question our thoughts. Is that true? Or am I just in programmed thinking? Then we have the pillar of the heart. There's so much research also around being loving and being in #gratitude and centering yourself in your heart and allowing your choices and your decisions to come from that place instead of up here, which can steer us wrong. And then we have the pillar of the body. So of course we have to take care of our body in all the ways that we nourish ourselves. So not just what we eat or how much we exercise, but also are we getting enough sleep or are we getting caught in that competition, that culture has sometimes, oh, I can survive on three or four hours of sleep. Oh, no, we can't. No, not at all. And then also, what are we putting into our minds throughout the day? What are we watching, reading, listening to? I have a rule not to start or end my day with news within two hours. I don't want to experience that exactly because it gets into our minds and then subconsciously, this is what's running the program. Then we have our purpose, our roof. What's your purpose in life? Are you doing things each day that bring meaning into your experience, no matter what age? I have children and I teach seniors, so I've talked to 90 year olds about having purpose and meaning, and they can do that, too. You don't have to be in the height of your career to find purpose and meaning in your day, you can be retired and knitting beanies for kids or making the staff at your community smile, or it doesn't matter what it is, as long as it feels good to you and brings joy to others as well. And then we have our garden, which is the people that we surround ourselves with and are they nourishing our happiness or a lot of people talk about the toxic people in their lives. So we want to make sure we clean that up too.
Russ Johns: [00:09:05] Yeah. Yeah. There's no reason to have any additional toxic environments in our life, if we can avoid it. And a lot of times, we have a choice. We all have a choice.
Tamara Zoner: [00:09:19] Yes. I believe we're always all at choice. Even if we think we have to do something, if you can reframe it that you're choosing to, then you feel so much more empowered and you say to yourself, yes, I'm going to this job. I don't really like it, but I'm choosing it because it provides these other benefits for me. And until I find something better or I choose something better then I'm going to make the most of what I have.
Russ Johns: [00:09:46] I think there's a lot of power in the opportunity to have a lot of different experiences because a lot of people aren't really sure what they want to do. You ask the high school student or the college student, what do you want to do when you get out of school? And a lot of them don't have enough experience to even measure what their ambitions are or what their interests end up being. And sometimes we have to go through life and make a few choices and make it, I call it the experience. Sometimes it's good. It's a good experience. And sometimes it's a learning experience and they're all good experiences. They teach us something along the way. So that's a lot like happiness as well, because like you said, my physical activity, if I want to shift my thought process or I'm thinking, or I'm spinning around in my head not being productive, I'll go jump on the bike and take a spin around the block or something, and just kind of shift my frame of mind. And I think a lot of people, they forget that they can do that. They can go do something else. They can just put it on pause, walk away from whatever it happens to be and just take a deep breath and shift their focus on something else for a moment and just say, what do I need to do next? And then, it's almost like a checklist in your mind. It's like, yes, I don't need to do that. No, I don't need to do that. No, I don't need to do that. Or I don't have to answer the phone call for this person that I don't necessarily want to talk to right now.
Tamara Zoner: [00:11:21] Exactly.
Russ Johns: [00:11:21] Yeah. So we all have choices. We all have decisions we have to make. And like you said, I love the idea that sometimes we do things in order to get to the next step. It's like practicing the piano to get to learn to play the piano. You have to practice, right?
Tamara Zoner: [00:11:39] Yes. I like to say that life is a practice, so all of these ways of being, require practice. I didn't get to be one of the happiest people I know just walking around blind. I made a conscious, devoted effort to clean up my mind, to take care of my body and to start to do the things that I know helped me feel good and lighter. And I chose those things more often than that, which made me feel tired or depressed or dull or angry, so I'm constantly realigning myself with what feels good. And that doesn't always mean easy. It usually doesn't. I call the people in my group and I have a meetup group as well, which is quite large for a local gathering and I call us conscious creators. And it's important to remember that when you are consciously creating your life when probably 95% of the world is sleepwalking through it and just doing that pre-programmed path that we learn as children. We're kind of out there alone and we have to find each other to support each other. I like to call us the lighthearted, find the lighthearted among your group and gather together with them to support you in this endeavor of conscious creation, because it's not the easy path, but it's so worthwhile because that is when you live this inspired kind of life on fire. And people also forget and I think this is why a lot of people shy away from happiness courses or finding their passions is that we're always comfortable right where we're at. Our brains and our subconscious minds love the status quo and especially in this past year, we've seen a lot of people kind of numbing out. And when we're numb, we're in this safe little section here and when we're willing to experience really high highs naturally, we also have to be willing to experience the lowest lows because we can't just create this container that's like this. It's either you feel all the really good stuff and you're willing to be able to really low stuff or you stay right stuck in the middle. And that's really no fun. That's not life.
Russ Johns: [00:14:12] I was telling a story the other day that expands on this concept because growth only happens outside the comfort zone. And as I have had many experiences, not all of them have been... some of them have been extreme learning experiences and I'm very fortunate to be alive. And as my body is, I wake up and I feel my body. And I know and recognize that I can actually relate a story to each one of these aches and pains. And that's experience, that's life, that's the joy of living. And it goes to your point, you cannot have the extreme joy, unless you've really had the opportunity or experience of having the pain, also. And so I think it's really important for us to understand that. Don't be afraid of a learning experience. Don't be afraid of what some people would call a failure or a challenging moment in your life. There's been so many times where you can make a choice and I think the most important thread along this concept is be responsible, take responsibility. And it's you that has to decide how you feel and it's you that has to decide what you're going to set your intention on. Like you said, set your intention and move forward and toward that goal. And I want to just give a shout out to some of the people in the room here that are joining us. Jennifer, good morning. I haven't seen you for a while. Thank you so much for jumping in. I really appreciate that. Thurston Baker, do you believe ridding yourself of as much fear as you can, brings happiness, more contentment? That's a great question.
Tamara Zoner: [00:16:04] It is a great question. And my answer is no.
Russ Johns: [00:16:08] My answer would be no as well.
Tamara Zoner: [00:16:10] It's making friends with your fear that will bring more happiness and contentment.
Russ Johns: [00:16:15] Yes. Understanding what it is that's creating the fear, I think, is really a exercise in the ability and opportunity to learn who you are. I think that's really, I think it was really important. Yes, personal responsibility is everything. Stoicism!
Tamara Zoner: [00:16:32] Yes. Absolutely.
Russ Johns: [00:16:34] Marcus Aurelius had, going back a few centuries, so excellent point, Jennifer says. Thurston says, know your thoughts. Thoughts are things and very powerful, absolutely positively.
Tamara Zoner: [00:16:49] Absolutely.
Russ Johns: [00:16:49] I love this. Thurston says, this gals got it down,you flow and live almost exactly like I do!. And life is resplendent! Good word. Thanks, John and Tamara have a great week. And Cathi Spooner is in the room. Thank you, Cathi for being here. Mahesh, do whatever you can do, but you should be enjoying it. Absolutely positively.
Jeff Young says, good morning, happiness trainer. I love it. Namaste. Network and make all sorts of terrific energy. The LinkedIn guru. Absolutely, Jeff, thank you. I love you, man. My pleasure, Russ Johns. I'm working on my next book. More updates soon. Well, tell us more, get it here. So before I get out of bed in the morning, I spend time thanking God for the day and the opportunities of the day. That is fantastic. I love it. I love it. Jennifer also, I don't know if this will all show up here. Good morning. Excellent points here first and foremost, thank you for receiving incredibly inspiring individuals on each broadcast. Love each one. Sometimes my apologies to not be active while live broadcasting individuals and sharing enlightenment through personal experiences. However, I do enjoy going back and listen, and get so much out of each broadcast. And yes, this resonates so well. Positive affirmations individuals, heartfelt gratitude. I love your work. Well, thank you. That is so kind. I really appreciate that. Some people, this is why it's so important for us to do this kind of work, Tamara. This is important for us to plant the seeds and nurture the ideas that you don't have to be miserable. You don't have to be living in a toxic environment and everything that's around you and surrounds you. And you have an opportunity to change your perception on how things are in place because sometimes the situation doesn't change. It's the way we perceive our situation changes. So maybe you can expand on that.
Tamara Zoner: [00:19:07] I'd love to. I think perception is everything. A lot of people think things happen to them and I like to reframe that and say, everything happens for us. Everything happens for me. So what can I learn from this? Maybe this experience doesn't feel great and what can I learn from this? How will I grow from this? And I've made a tweak. I love to play with words. So people say I'm going through so much and I say, well, okay, you're growing through this situation because no matter what's happening in your life, you're going to come out on the other side of it and you can either go through it, which feels really arduous and not so great. Or you can grow through it, which feels expansive and kind of exciting. Oh, you know though, you know what is hitting the fan and I'm going to come out stronger on the other side and know things that I don't know yet. Well, this is interesting. Let me stay open. And I know this from personal experience because you can take every ache in your body and name the experience. I once thought I was stuck. I thought that I was stuck in an abusive, controlling marriage, and I thought that for a long time, and then I started getting into personal development and reading so much and practicing. And that's when I started practicing meditation and yoga and learning from all of these leaders in transformational and personal development and realize that the only place I was stuck was in my own mind. And I had choices that I could make to change the situation and eventually that's what I did. It wasn't easy. It came with a lot of tears and a ton of growth. And here I am on the other side of that, having left a marriage that was hurting instead of helping. But I can also clearly pinpoint how much I grew through that experience. And of course, three beautiful kids. I choose not to regret a thing and really look back at what I learned and how I still continue to learn. Because when you have kids with someone, that relationship isn't severed. You still have to continue with them in your life for at least until the children are grown and mine aren't quite there yet. So, every day I'm asking, what can I learn from this? How can I grow? And how is this for me?
Russ Johns: [00:21:33] Learning patience along the way.
Tamara Zoner: [00:21:35] Oh, so much patience. Yes. So much patience. I was just talking about that, too. I've really, and again, that's just another practice. So if you think you're impatient, you just aren't practicing patience.
Russ Johns: [00:21:50] When we were talking about it and life is like an instrument. Being a musician and having played music professionally and things like that. It's the same thing in life. It's an instrument. We have to practice that every day and the things we struggle with are happening for our growth. They're not happening because somebody's picking on us. And I think I go back to this victim mentality versus being responsible for your actions and not every experience is meant to be simple and easy because we have to learn how to grow through it. And that's a great analogy and I love that analogy. So I know that you're probably sharing these ideas and these concepts and some lessons and probably have some courses or something. You have a Facebook group. Tell us about that and what you're doing over there and what your intentions are. Tell us.
Tamara Zoner: [00:22:46] Thank you. Well phrased. Yes, I have a Facebook group, which is where I cultivate this group to give access to more people to learn this stuff who might not be able to afford it because I was also once in a place where I couldn't afford a darn thing, and I want them to have a place where they can be inspired, get a daily dose of Tamara and really move throughout their weeks with intention and encouragement. And they can always reach out and ask questions. And then I offer courses. I do speaking, so I love to speak right now. I'm doing a lot in the senior community because it's where I came from. And I love my seniors. And I'm moving into speaking in corporate groups to teach staff this, because imagine if you have a happy staff, how much better the customer service is, which improves the bottom line and corporations are often the groups that don't necessarily look toward increasing happiness because we're , in corporate life. We're very concerned about bottom lines, but ultimately happiness increases those bottom lines. And I also teach in schools. I teach wherever people are asking me to show up because I believe so strongly that one individual's responsibility and taking that responsibility and making daily action toward their own peace and wellbeing and joy impacts everyone around them, everyone in little ways, it's that ripple effect. So they can definitely show up on my Facebook group and I would love to have them there if they're, if they happen to be local to the Detroit Metro area, I have a meetup group, same name. Create a life you love now. And even through the pandemic we've met in parks, we've met in greenhouses over the winter, so that we could be spread out and also in person and really just have authentic conversations. And of course I have a website, aLifeYouLoveNow.com and all my courses as they're happening will be listed there.
Russ Johns: [00:24:59] That's fantastic. It's really important for everybody to understand this because I have been promoting this idea that #kindnessiscool and #smilesarefree and it's in alignment with the happiness piece and understanding that even though life may not be what we imagine, it should be, or could be, or might be that we have a process and we have a growth. And as long as you're putting in the intention to go into a direction that is positive and just make progress every single day, just like that, practicing that instrument. Everything that you do every step of the way you add some things to your life, you remove some things for your life. It's constant flux of change. So, if you're looking to accomplish something bigger and better and feeling a little more positive in your life, you should probably reach out to Tamara and get some connections in the happiness space. You can always come back to the #PirateBroadcast™ and find some interesting conversations here as well. And I'm also on YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn live and Twitter. All these things are available. And we are here and we are available to start a conversation about happiness and what's going on around there. So it's really important for us to spread this word and get the message out there and like and subscribe, there's a podcast. If you can't watch the show every morning, like Jennifer said, follow the podcast. It's on Apple iTunes, Spotify, where all fine podcasts are sold. I'm just saying it's really important for us to spread this word, continue to spread this word. Jeff says absolutely right, Russ and Tamara Zoner. If you take charge of your own life, there's no such thing as fail. First attempt at learning. Absolutely positively, Jeff. And Jennifer closed out with Facebook groups may be a phenomenal experience to meet others throughout the networking platforms. It also to work well at all levels of growth from work mode, to being social through various endeavors, we're all here flying through space on the same rock, there's absolutely no reason why we can't be working together. Finding the common thread that allows us to be able to come together and find a little bit of happiness. So any last parting words.
Tamara Zoner: [00:27:38] I do believe you can do it no matter where you're at in your life, right now. You can be happier this time, next year, with little daily action. Right? Small imperfect actions every day consistently create amazing outcomes and you can do it.
Russ Johns: [00:27:55] Absolutely. Well, thank you so much for being here, Tamara. I really appreciate it.]
Tamara Zoner: [00:28:00] Such a pleasure. Thank you so much.
Russ Johns: [00:28:01] And I look forward to future conversations, as well.
Tamara Zoner: [00:28:04] It's fun to be a pirate.
Russ Johns: [00:28:07] It's not so bad. You don't even have to walk the plank.
Tamara Zoner: [00:28:11] Awesome. Thank you so much.
Russ Johns: [00:28:13] Yes. And everyone, as I said, please support the channel support, this message, it's worthy of sharing and letting other people know that this is an opportunity. This is an outcome that you can actually achieve results in. And it's only because #kindnessiscool and smiles are free, so you #enjoytheday. Take care, everyone.
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