In this episode, Susan Tripi shares the benefits of practicing gratitude even when facing difficult situations, how you can pay it forward, and how to develop a pathway to turn negative emotions into positive ones.
The inner-drive that compels Susan to give her all every day is social justice. Susan is deeply committed to using her background in the nonprofit sector to educate audiences on human trafficking, the sex trade, refugee resettlement, and women’s rights.
As a Nonprofit Advisor, Susan enjoys working with nonprofit organizations with a mission to bridge the equity and gender gaps, by equipping them with the strategy to generate more revenue so as to expand operations and increase impact. As a Women’s Empowerment Coach, Susan is driven by a desire for authenticity and acceptance to ensure that every woman navigating through a divorce or a major life event feels cared for, supported, and loved in the process.
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Welcome to the elevated entrepreneur podcast. I'm Jenessa McKenzie, an intuitive business and mindset coach to inspired success, driven solopreneurs like you who are ready to show up as a bad-ass boss and create the impact and income they desire. It's my mission to help you see who you were created to be. So you can share your gifts with the world and make a difference. My approach to business is not what most would call normal. Thank God, because being weird and unapologetic about it is my jam on this podcast, or mix the Woo with the do to help you create the space energetics and strategy to attract the clients and cash you really want, but unapologetically showing up as who you are. So you can design the business and life you desire from the inside out. So if you're ready to say peace to settling, hiding half-ass, and dimming your light yes. To having the abundant, profitable business and life of your dreams without living on the edge of exhaustion and overwhelm, listen up as I hit the BS button on the extremely outdated perception that you need to hustle and be something you're not successful. Thank you so much for being here today. Now let's do this. Hi everyone. Welcome back to the elevated entrepreneur podcast. I'm here today with Susan trippy. Please tell me, did I say that right?
Yes, you did. A women's empowerment coach. And she was also in the nonprofit sector, nonprofit sector and is a nonprofit advisor to help women just be amazing. The amazing beings that they are so welcome, Susan, how are you?
I'm doing well. Thank you so much for having me
Welcome. I'm excited. You're here. I'm excited to talk about these things today. We're going to talk about gratitude practice and the power of positivity and that's all that my audience knows. Those are two very important things to me. So I'm very excited that you're here and we can talk about these things together. So tell us more about you.
Well, I would have to say that, you know, for me, this experience of growing in gratitude and growing in self-care has been recent, like many women. It's a recent journey and it's often precipitated by a really difficult circumstance that the wall that we hit, where our body literally says, hello, something has to change. We cannot continue on the way that things are according to our normal. And that was me. About five years ago, I went through burnout. I had a lengthy career in the nonprofit sector and which as you know, is a passion of mine. It's a wonderful space-- many wonderful endeavors and world-impacting and life-impacting work, happens through non-profits, but behind the scenes, it's really difficult. It's difficult to raise money. It's, you know, there's just a lot of pieces to manage. And at the time I was young, I was in my thirties and I started noticing I was having all these weird symptoms.
Like I was very irritable. I was very moody. I was very short-tempered, which is not my personality at all. I'm normally very bubbly and very patient and very joy-filled. I was having trouble sleeping. And one night I started having chest pains, thought I was having a heart attack. And at the time I was married and I debated about waking my husband, cause he was scheduled to go on a business trip and I thought, okay, I can move through this. I can breathe through this. I'll be okay. And an hour later I was still having these sharp, intense pains that were picking up in frequency and intensity. And so I said, okay, I just need to go to the hospitals, went to the hospital, spent about seven or eight hours hooked up to all the machines, getting the readouts. And they determined, no, this was not a heart attack, but you are one stressed woman.
So you might as well go visit your primary care. So I visit my doctor. She runs a slew of tests and she tells me, okay, you have adrenal fatigue, you're pretty sick and burnout. Let's talk about what's going on in your life. And she recommended that I stop work. Wow, pure period and let my body recover, reset and heal itself. And so we talked about what that could look like. So I did, and part of my recovery process involved two really critical efforts. The first was learning about self-care, right? What does this mean? What does this look like beyond just, you know, the day at the spa, which is what we typically think of when we think of self-care, what are those deeper levels of self-care that really rejuvenate our mind, body spirit connection, right. And restore energy and bring balance. And the second thing.
So I studied. And then the second thing that I did was I worked with a spiritual director at the time to help me uncover those patterns of behavior that were present. And those patterns of thought that were present that led me to that place of burnout so that I could become more self-aware and I could the changes that I needed so that I never experienced that again, right through that process. I started regular habits of self-care. And one of those has been a practice of gratitude, which I have maintained since that time.
Yeah. And there are so many benefits to that practice of gratitude. I actually-- it's funny because when you said, you know, it was barely new for you, you know, it's the same here, right. It's just understanding how important gratitude is, you know, sometimes you're like, Oh, well I know I'm thankful. Yeah, of course. I'm thankful that I have a home and that I have a warm bed every night. And I have people that love me and you know, all of these things, but when you dig a little deeper, you don't realize like, Whoa, this is not just about having a home and having a warm bed and having people that love me, it's way more than that. It's like seeing where you can't you, how far you've come, seeing where you came from, and appreciating that place, even though it may have socked, right.
When you were there, it might not have been a great situation or a great time in your life, but appreciating the fact that you went through it to get to where you are. And I was just having this conversation with, I don't even remember who it was right now, but it was, and it was just yesterday. Isn't that funny that I was telling them a story that, you know, we have a TV in our room and after like a year and a half, for some reason, it just decided it didn't want to work anymore? And I was like, Ugh, like this kind of sucks. Right. That means we have to go get another TV. And we went to Walmart and we got another TV and got a great deal on the TV. And it was, you know, amazing. But as my fiance and I were walking out of Walmart, holding this TV, all I could think about was when I had my first child, I was 20 and was on state assistance on food stamps on all the things and my check every month covered nothing but my rent.
Right. Like I didn't even know how I was going to buy my diapers, toilet paper, like any of those things. And here I am walking out of Walmart with a $300 television that I didn't blink an eye at for paying for, because I knew that I could. And it just rushed me with gratitude. Like I was like, wow, like never, if you had told me at 20, right. Well, you're going to walk into Walmart someday or any store one day and look at the televisions and be able to purchase any TV up there without batting an eye. I would have been like, you're out of your tree.
Or in the situation, we just don't see it. We don't-- it's like survival mode. That's what I was saying. That's a survival mode that I couldn't see anywhere past was, where I was at at that moment. So, you know, just remembering, and I never have gone back that far in my memory that quickly it's always been, you know, probably within the last 10 years or something I've gone back and more like, Oh, I've done so much growing and self-growth and self-development and all these things, it was almost like the universe was like, wait a minute, you need to remember this, remember this place. So that was amazing.
And I think for me, I have enjoyed keeping a gratitude journal for that very reason. That way I can pull it out and I can reflect and I can look back over time. And I can see not only the results of my own efforts in terms of the resiliency that you build, the creativity that comes during times of crisis, as you're resourcing and networking and, and trying to make ends meet and make things work, or when you're dealing with a really difficult emotional life situation. Looking at the people that came around you during that time, that help to pull you through that experience. But then I also find that there are two other benefits to keeping a gratitude journal and this practice of gratitude that, that I have been really grateful for in my life. Then one of those is that one I'm able to see God's hand at work, right?
I'm able to see the ways that God just shows up in these incredibly unexpected and perfectly timed, uh, great down to like very acute details in that. And then I'm also able to recognize that one of the benefits for me of gratitude is that it expands my compassion for other people because until you go through something, you truly have no idea what it feels like to walk that journey, right? Like we can sympathize with people, we can support people, but until you're going through the deep water yourself and it is encompassing and you're struggling just to keep your head above water, right. We really don't know what that involves on a day-to-day kind of basis. And so as I've journeyed through some things, especially over the last year with, with COVID and some different factors that have hit my life, some different experiences.
Now there are pockets of people who were once invisible to me that are now visible to me because of the shared experience of food insecurity, housing, loss, job loss, divorce, all of those things that I've gone through over the past year. And so I now have a deeper understanding of what this looks like to live through this, but how I can care for other people in my community, in my neighborhood, in my town who are going through the same thing. And so when I hear of someone going through something, I can drop off an anonymous note and I can just say, you know, here's the gift card to the grocery store or use this to, you know, whatever. So that to me is been another benefit of the practice of gratitude is not only seeing how far I've come over time and seeing God's presence in my life, but also having the ability to expand my compassion for other people
And to pay it forward. Exactly.
Yes. I love that. So talk to me more about, well, I really want to dig into the positive, you know, practice and I'd like to dig into both sides of this positive practice, because I know for me, when I started trying to shift mindset and things like that, that it kind of got to a place of almost toxic positivity where you're like, Oh my gosh, I had a bad thought. I just ruined my whole day. Right. And you know what I mean? Like we do that because we're like, I can't think negative thoughts, which is total BS. Right. We're human. We're going to think negative thoughts. It's not about being positive all the time. It's about realizing the thoughts that we're having. Why are we having them feeling that emotion and moving through it so that we can switch it into a positive thought? Yes. So let's talk about that. Tell me how did that formulate for you? Was it in this obviously? I mean, you, the situation you went through, I'm sure we're not all positive thoughts, right?
No, you're right. I mean like any one of those life experiences, separation, divorce, job loss, housing loss, food insecurity, a health crisis that required surgery. All of those things I journeyed through over the past 15 months. And so take any one of those and that's enough to throw a life kind of upside down for a little period of time. And it's enough to become very kind of myopic in your view and think, Oh, why me poor me. Right. But you know, moving through those experiences recognize, okay, we have a choice, I believe in the power of choice. So the first place to start is I have a choice in how I'm going to respond. I may not be able to control the externals, but I can control my response to those externals. And I can allow this to tip me over the edge and put me into a very negative place, or I can learn from this.
And so for me, part of that process has been asking myself three questions in the context of any situation. And the first is always, what can I learn from this? What is present within this situation that can teach me those areas that I still need to grow in? Or things that I need to work on in terms of mindset or terms of just personal growth, right? Then the second is usually, you know, how can I use this experience to help other people? So that's the compassion piece. How can I use this to extend my level of compassion? And then the third question that I always ask too, is where do I see God's hand in this? And what are those deeper soul kinds of lessons that I can learn in terms of growth and from keeping that perspective as I move through situations-- it places the focus on forwarding motion rather than becoming paralyzed, and which is very easy to do when you're in the throes of a difficult life situation, all of the emotions are swirling fear, anxiety, doubt, overwhelm, anger, frustration, all of those emotions are swirling.
And so part of the process is rather than deflecting, just like you were saying, embracing the emotion, figuring out what's underneath it, and what's behind it. And from there developing a pathway to channel that into a positive forward motion, whether that's through an action plan, whether that's through calling somebody to process, whether that's through recognizing the triggers that it's bringing up within my mind, my mindset, my soul, my psyche, all of them, all of those things. And through doing that, staying committed to what do I need to do to move forward. One more step in this process, what is my goal of moving through a divorce? For example, what do I want to create for my life now, post-divorce, and then coming up with a set of goals, achievable, achievable, wins, and goals every month that I can work towards, right? Yeah. The baby steps. Exactly. And celebrating those that are so important during any time of crisis to keep a positive mental attitude and perspective is celebrating every win. Even if they win is today, I got out of bed.
Right. I got out of bed and I got dressed and I went outside. You know, there are some days where it's that deep thing. Yes. So celebrating all of the wins.
Absolutely. I totally agree with that. And that's not even, you know when you're in a mental crisis, that's just every single day. It's like, just don't forget to celebrate the crap out of every single little win that you have because we do, it's so easy to do that, to forget about celebrating all the things that went. Right. Because we're so focused on all the things that either went wrong or the things that we still have to do, or the external circumstances that are, we feel like are screwing up our mojo at the time.
And it's so important to write, you know, this, to find-- and I coach women through this too, is finding your tribe, finding a tribe of women who support you unconditionally, who are with you unconditionally, who care for you, which doesn't mean they're going to say yes to you on everything. Cause you don't want people in your life that are going to, yes, you, they are going to hold a mirror to you, but they're also there to lift you to encourage you and to celebrate those wins. So I have a group of five women that any time something positive happens, I shoot them all a text and they, you know like we all celebrate together and it's woo high fives and all the emojis, but it's so important to have a tribe around you. Yes.
And it's important to have that tribe around you too, that when you need the help, when you're like today kind of sucks guys, like, can you just give me a little boost here that they're like, heck yes. Let's, you know, we're going to give you a little boost. I love that. I love it. That you have those five women to do that. And it's important to have them, even if it's not in one group text, even if they don't know each other, it's important to know that you can you know, text this one person even, and just be like, Hey, how are you? This is what happened to me today. Let's celebrate that. Let's celebrate something that you know, did, and now how else can we help each other?
I love that. So, what other tips might you have for just, you know, I know for me, a lot of times, like the morning is not always the best time for me to like to sit down and journal or meditate or like, I don't want to have this hour, two hours long morning routine. Right? Sometimes because, you know, sometimes I like to sleep in, or sometimes I have early meetings or episodes to record or whatever it is that, you know, I want to get these things done in the morning. So I do always in the morning have a specific little ritual practice that I do in the morning that gets done every morning. But I do like to journal, I do like to, you know, write a gratitude list, but I also know that if I-- for me anyway and I'm air quoting here, if I force myself to feel like I have to do these things every day, that I fall off way easier than if I'm like when I feel inspired to do that. So what would you say to somebody who's like, I have to do this every single day.
I would say, check your motive. Why do you feel you need to do something every day. Right. For that very reason that you just mentioned Jenessa, is that sometimes it's so easy for us to get into this fixated routine of ticking off a box when the activity that we just ticked off does nothing for us. It's not bringing, it's not, life-affirming, it's not bringing energy to us. It's not moving us forward, but is it something we can do just to do? So I would say check, check the motive as to why you feel, you need to do that particular thing each day. And really it's more about coming to, and in terms of self-care and gratitude practices, it's more about understanding what are those efforts that are going to feed your soul, renew your energy and, and keep help you to maintain and keep a positive perspective, which does not mean where deflecting and denying emotions and thoughts like that.
That's totally different. Can that goes into like the hyper toxic positivity that you were talking about earlier as human beings, we come with this full range of thoughts and emotions. And so it's important to reflect on those and pinpoint what's going on. What's the root that's underneath those so that we develop a more acute sense of self-awareness and self-growth, but it's from a self-care perspective, thinking through what are some of those practices that will enable us to maintain a certain level of mental wellbeing, mental health, and a positive focus to our day. So for me, I love to journal like you and I have found that, when I was journeying through some really deep stuff, my mornings were very emotional for me. They, some days I would just wake up and I would be caught ness, just crying, right.
And that's, you know, that's part of it. It's the body's way of releasing all of the stress and releasing the grief and as you know, the body is going through this process of its own. So, embracing that, moving through it, if you can, rather than stifling it. Cause if you stifle it, you're just going to tuck it and store it in other parts of your body that will manifest in other ways like backaches and tension, that migraines, and all that. So, I found that it was important in my mornings to set intentions and to think about rather than goals because goals are important and that's not what I'm saying, but goals have a very quantitative effect and it can become easy to feel discouraged if you don't meet that goal that day because life happens, things pop up. So intentions to me are a better way to frame the day because an intention says, this is how I'd like to direct my energy today.
I'd like to direct my focus today, and then it opens up space that becomes your framework and your lens for how you view the rest of the day. So for example, there were days that I would say, you know, my tension, my intention for this day is to give myself the grace. I need to move through the day period. That way if things happened for me, I just continue to be a hot mess that day. Cause that's the state that I was in at that time. Okay. I'm giving myself the love. I'm giving myself the grace. I'm giving myself the space to do that. Other days, I would say, you know, my intention today is to meet new people. It's to network with people in my community and to get to know one new person today. And that way, when I'm out on my walks and I see someone I can wave and say, it just focuses. It sets the focus for how I'd like to move through the day. I have found that help.
Cool. That's amazing because-- and I, we, for anyone listening, we can see each other right now. So Susan and I can see each other. So when she said I set intentions, instead of goals, I actually kind of giggled and she could see my face. So I think that's why you were like, no, not that goals aren't important, but I was actually that I was actually giggling because I do the same thing. So it was just, I was like, Ooh, like another message from the universe saying, you know, like the intentions have been popping up everywhere for me lately. And so it wasn't that I thought goals were more important than intention because actually, I don't actually feel like intentions are exactly what you said. It is a way to look at your day through a different lens and to release how things are going to happen.
I think that is the biggest thing. And it's not about, you know, releasing the outcome because you're still setting an intention to have, you know, a good day, right. Or to meet somebody. And you know, that you want to meet somebody and for the outcome to be, you know, that you have a new relationship. So you're not releasing the outcome, you're releasing, how that is going to happen. Like, it doesn't matter if it's your next-door neighbor that you never met before, or the guys 10 houses down that, you know, you just happened to be walking by and he's getting his paper. Like, it doesn't matter who it is or how it happens. It's just the intention of, I am going to connect with another human being today, period. Yeah.
Yes. And I have found since making this shift from being goal-oriented, which is productivity-centered to intention-focused, which is energy-centered. I am have been amazed by the number of opportunities that come across my path that I would have completely missed or deflected before if I was focused on a specific goal. Cause I would have thought, Oh, that doesn't fit into the framework. Exactly.
Exactly. And it's funny because I had just put-- commented on somebody's post on Facebook the other day, she was talking about resolutions and you know how we're in February. So most people that set a new year's resolution, which is a goal because that's just how our, you know, the framework is as a human where, when we're-- that's what we're taught to set a goal or set a real resolution of a specific thing that we have to reach, that we have to finish, that we have to do. As you said, productivity-based thing, but it's specific. It's tangible. Whereas an intention doesn't have to be, it doesn't have to be a tangible thing. It can be just a way of you being in the world that day. Like you said, giving yourself grace through the day, just to give yourself grace through the day.
Right? Like that's not a tangible thing. That is you know, it brings your focus back to center is what an intention does. It's like, Oh right. I said that I was going to give myself grace today. So instead of being like, Susan, why are you such a hot mess today? Why can't you get out of yourself? Like, get out of your head, blah, blah, blah.
Like instead of, and then you're going to catch yourself faster being like I said, I was going to give myself grace today. So let's do that. Do you know? And in this post, I kind of got off track a little bit, but in that post, she had said to me like I commented and she said, Oh, what are your goals? Blah, blah, blah. I said, actually I don't set goals.
I said, I set intentions for my new year instead of goals and I no longer have a to-do list. I have a to manifest list. So yeah. Do I have things on that to the manifest list? Yes. But now, and I actually learned this from, I dunno if you know who Katherine's and kina is she's the manifestation, babe. But she does the same thing and I was like, Ooh, that's a great idea. I'm going to start doing that. And when you call it or, you know, but the energy behind it as a manifest list, now you're like, okay, I'm not the only one that can actually bring energy into complete these things on the site. Right. You're like I can accept energy or help from anywhere else to help create the things on this list. Yes. So it's not like, you know, it can still be, you know, I need to email this person, this person, this person today, or, you know, whatever it is, but it kind of releases that feeling inside of you, that you are the only one that can get this done. And if it has to be done and just the force of that masculine push energy and to bring in more of the feminine energy to be like, I'm going to receive any energy that wants to come to me, anyone that wants to help me any, you know, and that could open the door for that person that you're supposed to email to the email you instead, you know, like amazing things happen when you just let the energy flow instead of pushing it out all the time or trying to pull it in all the time.
Exactly. And going back to burnout. Yes. That, it's another way of preventing the path to burnout because the focus is taken off me as an individual, doing everything right. To developing this team of people that are in alignment with the intention.
Exactly. Opening the doors for those people to come in. As you said, those that the people that you have in your life now were kind of invisible to you before because you know, you, weren't asking for, for that veil to be lifted for that, for those people, to you, you weren't even like all the doors were locked.
You were like, Hmm. Yeah.
This is the path. This is, this is it. So all these doors over here, we're like, okay, well, these people are hanging out over here on the other side kind of waiting, but you just want to go down the hallway. You know, so you're sprinting down the hallway forgetting that the doors are there almost, you know.
Our, with our, our blinders. Right. So, and I find that that happens a lot, especially with my clients. I work with a lot of women that have come from corporate. Right. Because their corporate is very masculine energy. Right. I guess, depending on the company that you work for, but most corporate places have a lot of masculine energy and it's work, work, work, push, push, push force, force, force, like these things have to get done by this time and there are goals and there's this and there's that, and everything's measured. And you're like, Oh, like I hurt my head.
I mean, I came from a corporate background too,
So I know, I know I've been there. Like I totally get it. And being able to step out of that energy and find that balance between because we all have to have, or we all do have masculine energy and feminine energy inside of us. And to find the balance of that in your life, like being like, okay, well, these things do need to get done, but I'm going to give myself grace in doing them and allow other people or energy or universal amazingness to come in and help me do it, receiving instead of just, you know, blocking yourself and you know, not unlocking the doors.
And that's a whole, it's a whole mind shift. It's a whole different framework and lens and place of processing, not only our role and space in the world but how we interact with others around us and really like the universe around us. It's a whole different framework and it can be scary. It can be scary and it can, you know, what's that word? We will, I've heard, people mentioned that all that to say is a little too. Woo. I don't know about that, but it works.
And you don't even have to think of it. I mean, if woo doesn't turn you on, like, you don't have to think about it as Woo. You can think about it as this is just going to make my life easier, you know? And it's not wooing to switch your mindset into, I don't want to push and deflector, feel like I have to force my way through life. Exactly. Like-- and most of us are doing that. We don't even realize we're doing it.
Don't even realize it. We're just, we're pushing forward. What happens when we don't push forward anymore when we allow it to flow. Right. Do you know? So yeah. Does it sound like yes, but it doesn't need to be exactly? I love it. I love that. So any last word, Susan, anything that you would love to tell anyone, listening, tips, tricks, advice, whatever you got just to make this feel complete for you?
I would say one of the most important lessons that I've learned over this process and time of journeying into self-care and gratitude and positive perspective is trusting my gut. So I am going to leave that as the tip, especially for women and you know this as well, we are taught to deflect and dismiss and deny our and our gut. And we are conditioned in many ways to seek advice, to go to others, external outside of us, for advice, for wisdom, for direction, for guidance. And so, whether it's self-care, whether it's journeying through a divorce, whether it's going through a difficult life situation, whether it's trying to figure out the answer to a situation, trust your gut, train yourself, to listen again, to that voice inside that is always there and is present. And I have found in my own life, the times that I have not heated that have caused me trouble. Me too. Yes.
I always say I can kick myself. Why didn't I just nope? But there, and every time. And so that's part of the standing in your power that I work with, that I teach in that I model in, that I guide women in is tapping back into that intuition and tapping back into their gut to make decisions that are in alignment with where they want to go, the passion that they have and the deeper work that's in their soul already.
So you're getting truly because really that is your intuition is just guiding you on the right path. Exactly. Fields doing. And I don't know how many times in my life I had said, I knew that I knew that I knew I should have done it that way and not this way, or, you know, whatever. It's always that very first hit a feeling where it's like, Nope. And then you say, you like, give yourself a big story of why it shouldn't be what you really thought it was the first time we talk ourselves right out of our intuition. All exactly. Yes, we do. Yes. And learning to actually trust that and blow with it and do it is a whole nother, like deconditioning piece that you're, you know, you have to go through and it's not going to be perfect by any means when you start to do it, because we all still go really well, hear that little voice. And we're like, oh, I really, you know, I thought maybe it was the other way, but you're saying it this way. So I guess we'll and actually doing it and being like, okay, I'm open enough to be like, let's just trust it. Yep. That's like some of the hardest work that you're ever going to do right there. I agree with that. All right, Susan, tell us where we can find you. Where can we connect to? Where can we work with you? Tell us all the good stuff.
Yes. Thank you. So you can find me on Instagram and Facebook at Susan trippy coaching. You can also find [email protected]
Awesome. Amazing. Okay. So as always everyone screenshots this episode, tag us on Instagram, tell us what you thought. Ask us questions. Well, I love us both, all of us love to hear the aha moments that was a perspective shift. I love perspective shifts. So please let us know all the good stuff and we'll see you all in the next episode. Thanks.
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