41 - Minding Your Business: Mindfulness, Business Strategy, and Self Care with Cheryl Cooper

Course Creators Academy

Apr 4 2023 • 45 mins

Pualena dives deep into the topics of running a business, starting a side hustle, and exploring mindfulness with Cheryl Cooper, certified life coach, speaker, and trainer. Cheryl shares her journey from repeated successes in the corporate world into the realm of entrepreneurship to coaching other entrepreneurs to find their own successes.

For anyone considering starting a business, you’ll hear tips on how to know when it’s the right time to start a business, the key elements to focus on as you get started, and the importance of branding and using a brand guide. Cheryl also illustrates how quickly industries can change and how it’s possible to weather the storm and adapt.

About Cheryl Cooper

For the last 15 years, Cheryl has been running a side hustle business of some sort, dreaming of the moment in time when she could find the right mix of skills to share with the world, paired with her passion for empowering others - so that she could claim her personal freedom. Well…Kajabi + 27 years of corporate IT consulting, her Maxwell Leadership speaker, trainer & coach certification, along with her Certified Workplace Mindfulness Facilitator credentials have brought her to a place of nirvana. It is allowing Cheryl to Live the Dream & help others create theirs too.

Resources discussed in this episode:


Contact Pua Pakele | RBL Media:

Contact Cherly Cooper | The Cheryl Cooper:


Cheryl 0:00

So there's so many things in the only category, in the IT world that was complicated and so many lessons were learned from that. That drove me into needing, needing not just wanting, needing to understand mindfulness so that I could heal myself.

Pualena  0:28

Today's guest is someone who is so special to me. She is a fellow Kajabi designer. She has helped and supported our clients. She's just a wonderful woman and an incredible person. And I'm so excited to share her with you today. Today we're talking to Cheryl Cooper, a total boss lady in the IT and business coaching world, with over 25 years of professional experience under her belt. Not only has she worked with big names and global corporations and management consulting firms, but she's also a certified life coach, speaker, trainer and coach with the Maxwell Leadership team. Cheryl is also a certified workplace mindfulness facilitator, with the mindful leader organization. Cheryl weaves mindfulness into the work that she does with all of her clients and I'm so excited for her to share a little bit more about what she has been working on and is launching very, very soon. So without further ado, please meet The Cheryl Cooper. Yay. Welcome. Yay.

Cheryl  1:41

Thank you.

Pualena  1:42

I'm so excited.

Cheryl  1:43

We did it.

Pualena  1:44

We did it. This was a, this, this moment, manifested itself and then gave us some like extra little, little tasks to do before we could get here.

Cheryl  2:01

Before we could get it done. Get it done.

Pualena  2:04

Are you sure? Are you sure? We're like, yeah, let's do this. No, thank you so much for being here. I'm so excited for this conversation. And I just, I just love you. And I think that you coming into my world, and my life was not an accident. And this is one of so many collaborations that are to come. So, thank you for being here.

Cheryl  2:27

You're welcome. I'm so excited about it. And I just look forward to seeing what unfolds as we have this conversation. Because, you know, when the two of us get together, there's always something pretty cool that happens. So, let's just see what happens.

Pualena  2:43

Let's do it. Okay, so for those who don't know, the amazing Cheryl Cooper, I would love for you to just share a little bit about your story, how you got to doing the many things that you do today. And we can dive into that really incredible coaching that you provide to people.

Cheryl  3:07

Thank you. So my story is and I'm going to stick to it. So, my story, this is my story. I'm sticking to it. I worked in corporate America 25-30, maybe 40 years, maybe even more actually, because I started working as a 15-year-old. My mother told me back then that you needed to be a businesswoman. And in order to do it, you needed to learn how to type. So I had to learn on a typewriter how to type and it was part of our curriculum in high school. Fast forward many years, I ended up working for Deloitte and Touche when amazingly gain tremendous amount of knowledge about how to become a consultant. I didn't go to work for Deloitte and Touche as IT were, I mean, as an auditor, I went to work for them as a management consultant. And that really fast-forwarded in my career and my ability to learn all kinds of things that will be applicable to what we do today. I have managed to stay in the consulting field for the last 20 years, 25 years as an IT consultant and management consultant working for some of the most amazing companies in the world. IBM, Deloitte and Touche, Coca-Cola, Wipro are just to name a few. And Stryker was one of my favorite clients. So, I'd go to those organizations and work for the big names and then go out and work for other big names through a consulting opportunity through Deloitte or whoever, then all of a sudden 2020 hit. Now let me back up for a second. I had been laid off multiple times from organizations throughout the years. And I would always be like, okay, God, if you really want me to be an entrepreneur, let me know. If you really want me to be an entrepreneur, let me know. I would say at every time, each time that I got laid off, I would always get promoted to another role in a different organization that would give me the lifestyle that I enjoyed living. So, it was hard for me to go all in, in becoming an entrepreneur. What I did instead was a side hustle entrepreneurship, where I began doing business coaching, life coaching, leadership, development coaching. And then fast forward to 2020. I was furloughed from my job with Wipro. And as most people were, at that time, I was working on my business. And I decided at that point, I was like, going forward, I'm probably gonna figure out how to get out of corporate America. I was in a coaching session with a group of ladies, I did a leadership coaching group called Live Oh, shoot, I forgot the name of it, Ladies Leading and Loving it, L Three Academy. That's what it was called. And some of the women were like Cheryl, you know that you're supposed to be doing entrepreneurship, I'm not sure why you keep going back in. So, I made the decision that I would really work hard to create my business and move to, move my website, from a WordPress website to Kajabi. And when I did that, it brought all of my world and my work, work experience together. I could do internet marketing, I could coach people, I could get everything in one place. And it was just like that aha moment. I was like, oh, okay, this is it. And that's when I became The Cheryl Cooper, the Kajabi lifestyle architect. And I was doing that side hustle until 12 of 2012 11, 21. My angel numbers tend to be ones and twos. And I didn't even realize that until the other day when I was looking back and I was like, oh, cool. And that's when I left corporate America and became a full-time entrepreneur.

Pualena  7:22

Yes. Oh, my God, I'm celebrating as much as I can while staying seated. Oh, my gosh, okay. I want to dive into all the things. And the first place that I want to start is why did you keep going back in? And what would you tell somebody whose story is just like yours, where corporate is not their joy? It's not lighting them up. They know they want to get out. They know they want to be an entrepreneur, they probably even know exactly what they would do if they were an entrepreneur. But it's too comfortable. That paycheck is too good. And they, they're not. They, they feel like they're not ready. What would you tell that person?

Cheryl  8:04

So, you asked me multiple questions a little bit, right? So, you asked me, why did I keep going back in? And then you answered it. It's the paycheck. It's the security of the paycheck. Coming out here and be an entrepreneur. I keep saying this over and over again. Entrepreneurship is not for us. I have to be politically correct. And hopefully, it will not offend people. Right? But it's not for cissy’s, and I'll say it's CISSY that's my nickname. It's really complicated. It's complex, and you need to have, can I curse? Yeah. You need to have your shit together, when you come out. You really need to be well, very clear about what you want to do. And that's not easy to do in your first year or your second year, your third year, even as you come out of your side hustle. You can you can think that it's going to be those things, unless you get an extraordinary opportunity where you just launch into something full fledge. You know, like I heard many people on the side hustle podcast that came out. Danielle Alessi would be a great example. Right? She came out and she came out strong but she had to build her business. And she got lucky, she got funding and all that kind of stuff. So when you come out, it's scary. And I wasn't ready to take that leap without already having all of my debt paid off, other than my house and having a nice chunk of savings in place, so I used my side hustle money to fund me for however long.

Pualena  9:43

That is so, so smart. And anybody listening to this, heed that advice. I think a lot of people are out there saying, you know, burn the boats, you'll figure it out, like the power of broke. And the power of broke is really just that that power is, at least in my personal experience, it really just like lowers your vibration and makes things, adds a layer of challenge that doesn't have to be there. If you can be a little bit strategic plan ahead, right? And there's value to both. If you're like, oh, God, I left my job already. And I have a lot of debt because I started my business in another plan, it's fine. Like, there are ways to move through that as well. So now, if we can shift to the person that's like, how do I know when I'm ready, I have my savings. I feel like I could jump at any moment. But I'm scared.

Cheryl  10:41

I would say, put together a plan. Right? Do a strategic planning session with a business coach, or somebody in the organization, score, you know, score through the Small Business Association, get a mentor and walk through that and come up with a plan of action for what you're going to do. Make sure to do research about your business idea. Make sure it's a solid idea, that the industry is still going to be active in the next six months, because we don't we can't even go in 2023, we can't go like five year-ten year. Chat GPT just changed our whole world in months, right? So, we can't, we can't do that, that thing where you can say, let's look and see if it's going to be active five years now, can it be active for the next six months, eight months, 10 months, 12 months, and then add on to that as, as you go. And then test the market. Test the market. I am in fine and identify your target audience. Put together all your branding and everything before you come out of corporate America. Put together your plan of action. That's what I would say just to summarize it, and we can break that plan of action down if you want.

Pualena  12:03

Yeah. Brilliant. I love that you said, get your branding together before you leave corporate America–

Cheryl  12:10

Well, you know why, right?

Pualena  12:11

–because it costs a lot of money to get that stuff designed. And I definitely recommend hiring somebody to help you with that. Get a whole brand guide, put together by a professional. Trust us.

Cheryl  12:26

Yes. It's getting ready to say. And while you're at it, get professional photos done, y'all. Because when you come out or even if you're still in corporate America, and you want people like Pua and I to build your website, we want you to have a certain set of things available to make the process easy. It will be easier on you as well as on your, your designer, because we want to just, you know, we want to bring that content to you as quickly as possible, without having to go back and forth and back and forth. So that's just me saying, you know kind of.

Pualena  13:04

Let's talk about very important. right? Because I think sometimes I talk to a lot of people and they're like, oh, I have my business name and I like orange and blue, or orange and yellow or yellow you whatever, pick two colors pink and purple. I, what. What's missing from that, aside from an actual logo, is when you get a brand guide created by a professional, they tell you how to use your branding. Why is that important? Because it's a, it's a roadmap for us as the designers and the builders to create something that's very, very consistent. Let's talk about why consistency and branding is so important. Right? What are your thoughts on that?

Cheryl  13:52

I'm a huge advocate for it. Especially because this is like your calling card to the world. Right? Your branding is your calling card everywhere you go. We're not on screen, but if you notice, I always have one black, because black is a part of my branding. It's my branding on social media I have on black, black and white, pink, pink and gold. Something of that nature. But I went through a brand expert. I worked with Nick Nelson from Brandpreneur here in Atlanta, and he taught us those types of things. So, everywhere you go, your brand stands out. When you're out networking, people are going to look at you and look for work some kind of brand identity, whether it's in your cards, your social media or the clothes that you wear. So, branding is a huge part of what drives success and in building a big brand.

Pualena  14:52

Huge. And when we think about the buyer psychology, there's. Like, if you visit a website or walk into a store or get somebody's business card, the more consistent and like strong and reiterated that brand is, the more you feel like you can trust that company, that person that brand, because it's a little bit predictable, right? If the brand is consistent, the service might be consistent. It's not something that we like, consciously correlate. But when you are looking at a brand that's a little off, or like a website, that's like, there is really no consistent brand–

Cheryl  15:30

All over the place.

Pualena  15:32

Yeah, like that chaotic feeling that you get it, it affects the conversion, right?

Cheryl  15:41

It does, you know, and you just said something huge to me, when you just said that chaotic energy feeling that you get, it's all about energy, right? So, when we put out certain energy, we get back certain energy. If you put out that you are a chaotic person in the way that you're presenting yourself through your brand, you're going to attract chaotic clients. If you put out that your high-end brand that looks like Chanel, you might get people that look and work with you that act like people that want to purchase Chanel products, right? All of those things make a difference when you're creating your brand identity. And I'm not a brand expert, you all, I'm just talking from experience and going through many iterations of developing my personal website. And finally, when I figured out what that style wanted, what I wanted that style to be, it all came together. And it's, it's cool, right? You just, you start to feel it, and you start to live it. And you know, I'm all about a lifestyle type thing.

Pualena  16:48

Yes. I'm so glad that you said that. And I'd love to dive into that. So you have a, we connect on so many levels. And I, every time I talk to you, I'm like, yeah, this is why we're friends. This is why we this is why we collaborate. Because it is a whole it's a, it's a very holistic picture, energy mindset. Connected, like people are always saying like, okay, well, I've followed all the things. And I've, I've done everything that expert X, Y and Z told me to do, why are the people not coming? Or why am I connecting with people who aren't my ideal target audience? And I think what needs to be highlighted more, and I think this is, people are starting to teach this in a more mainstream fashion. But let's talk about energy because it truly, truly matters. And as we get into this sort of video-focused world, I just saw somebody say, posts on Instagram are dead. The only thing that matters is video. Energy can be felt deeply in the video space. So, let's, let's talk about how energy plays a role in the work that you do with your clients and with web design and all of that.

Cheryl  18:04

So, when we talk about energy my, my thing would probably be more around spirituality and energy. Everything is energy. We are energy, energetic beings. We're, what is, what is it Wayne Dyer says, we're human beings have an energy Oh, shoot, I forgot the whole quote. But it's a, it's along the lines that we're human beings, hasn't it? Oh, gosh, I can't think of it. But when you talk about energy, it is all around us. It is created for us to use, to inspire, educate, empower people. It is the way that we live. It's the way that we breathe. It's what we attract to us based on our energetic vibration. I'm not an expert in that area. I just live it out of lessons learned in life. Right? I started down, I’m a, a spiritual seeker, so, I started down one path. And I believe that God is the way but you got to define what God is right? So, God for me is XYZ and God for somebody else could be another thing. And I think that when we all figure out and understand that there's this great big universe and it's filled with God and universe and spirit, and we can combine all that together to create a happy existence in life, then life gets a lot better. And it's really a lot about your mindset. And when we talk about raising your vibration, you raise your mindset to go with it. And it makes life feel better. You can live life simply, you can get to a place of peace and serenity. And you're not faced with a constant set of resistance that's coming towards you. And for everything that you're doing. You know, right now we're in this space where it's all about busy. How you doing? I'm busy. How you feeling? I'm stressed.

Pualena  20:19

Like a badge of honor.

Cheryl  20:22

Life is chaotic, right? And I'm like, no, you guys, that's, that's not the way we're supposed to live. But we don't know that because that's the way that society is teaching us and bringing us up and connecting us to these things all the time. I'm raising my phone, who all that constant connection to Digital Influence, is creating a chaotic space for us that is moving just as fast as those eyes and O's are, whatever the things that are behind the technology that are creating it, right? So, we have to control our energy. And we have to sit through situations where you take in mindfulness, you know, I'm a huge believer in mindfulness. Mindfulness is the way to live and whatever you define as mindfulness is up to you. For me and what I teach is through meditation, through outdoor activities, getting in nature, through sitting in quiet time, you don't have to be in meditative, meditative state, you can just sit still and know. And when you do that, you also create all kinds of opportunities for your brain to reset and you can get re-centred, and creativity will flow. I could just go on and on.

Pualena  21:44

Oh my god, go on and on, please. I could listen to your voice, a. it’s just so calming and it's such a good contrast between my like. I can't agree more with what you're saying and it's so, so interesting. Because when we are in those moments of like busyness and feeling overwhelmed and not, not feeling like there's enough time, not enough time, not enough money, not enough energy, not enough, not enough, not enough. What we tend to do is sit in front of our computer, let our wheels spin, instead of taking a step back, getting outside, sitting, you said something that I was just like, hell yes. Just sit and know.

Cheryl  22:30

Be still and know.

Pualena  22:33

That, you know, we all know, we are all-knowing, we have all the answers within us. And I find that when I'm stuck on something, and I'm that person, I'm like, the longer I sit at this desk, the more work I'm getting done right? And that couldn't be further from the truth. Because as soon as you get outside, if I go for a walk, even if I take a shower, all the ideas start coming in, right?

Cheryl  22:57

The shower is one of the best places to get great ideas. You name the two for me shower and outdoor activities. Right outdoors, oh my God, I take that mindfulness walk every day. Almost, when it was cold as here I wasn't taking walks, it was just too cold. But, and you've never know that from Colorado originally. And I'm not, too cold outside. But cold in Georgia is different than cold in Colorado. But just taking the time go and look up, go look up, don't look down, look up, see the trees, see the birds, and all that amazing nature that is just a gift to us. Just a gift, breathe the air. If you're in a good spot, well, you have to breathe anyway. But like, I'll take deep breaths here because I live in a space that's far enough away from traffic that it doesn't harm my lungs, or whatever. And it's just so many little things that we can do through mindfulness. And I say when you do that you get to absorb energy that will help you mind your business. And that's the newest thing that I'm coming out with which I'd love to talk to you about that later. But my, my new landing page is about minding your business, whether it's in corporate America, or as an entrepreneur, or as an individual, we all need to mind our business, so, that we can take care of ourselves because nobody else is going to take care of us.

Pualena  24:30

I love love, love that and as we continue on this path of innovation in tech, I think this practice is going to become imperative for entrepreneurs to thrive, or right? I think.

Cheryl  24:46

I think so.

Pualena  24:47

We don't have a choice, we must write this.

Cheryl  24:50

Yeah, because this, this, we could stay in front of our computers for day and night. And then, then your health goes down. You see, I'm over here shaking up my drink right now, because I forget to drink. Right? Even if I have the big jug of water in front of me, I still needed some electrolytes. I was like, let me go get some electrolytes and let me take care of myself. Because we'll sit here, it's so beautiful to, to come across. Like right now is a beautiful stage in our evolution. I'm not gonna get too deep on that, but this Chat GPT in the way that AI is incorporating into our lives. It is absolutely life changing. Web 3.0  is here. And I'm not an expert, but I'm gonna say, I'm gonna say it like I'm an expert Web 3.0 is here, and you better be ready for it, you better equip yourself to use it, or find somebody else to work with that can help you to use it. If not, it could get a little, it can get a little bit crazy for you. I don't want to say you'll be left behind and all of that kind of stuff. Because I don't want to use scare tactics. But take advantage of this opportunity. This is an amazing time in history. And the tools that we’re being given. We’re being given those to us to enhance our existence. When used appropriately.

Pualena  26:25

Nailed it.

Cheryl  26:28

That's how I'm feeling about it, I should do it.

Pualena  26:30

Let's I mean, if you're up for it, let's dive into this. Because I think this is very top of mind for people. And I hear a lot of Oh, Chat GPT is, is it's creepy. We're becoming machines resist it. And then there's the other camp where they're like, this is the future. Like, let's become machines. And what I love about what you said is allowing this to, to exist, we can't, fighting, it does nothing, it's going to exist. And it's going to evolve, it's going to get more and more powerful, and the abilities will become better and better and better. And how can we learn what's coming, learn how to use the tools and allow them to, as you said, enhance our human experience rather than replace it?

Cheryl  27:18

I have all kinds of answers for that. But the first thing that comes to mind is get your butt on YouTube and Tik Tok.

Pualena  27:28

Tell us why, for all of us who are like no, I won't do it.

Cheryl  27:32

Because Tik Tok has some of the most genius people out there teaching it for free. They're not trying to pull you in with dollars and cents, right? They are just out there. There's some, some young professionals that are out there saying hey, this is what you can do. I learned so many terms from them, and then I haven't been on Tik Tok since. It's been two weeks ago or whatever. And I was like, dude, I'm jumping in. I immediately signed up. That's been I don't know how many weeks ago because time is flying by right. But they, there are some of the most educated individuals out there on Tik Tok, teaching about it and they're kind human beings. Right? They're kind, they're wanting to give away, they want to ensure that people do not get left behind. They want you to understand that prompt engineers are important and kind of give you some insights about what that means. They want to teach you how to write templates so that you can use them in Chat GPT to create repetitive information. I'll share the guides with you, right? You, they, they teach you some of the language to use and the things that you can do with it, like, teach, ask a question and Chat GPT and say and put it in a funny voice or in a stern voice or something like that and it will respond. So, the people on TikTok, I found were really generous and well-educated. They transfer their knowledge over into YouTube and actually show you how to do it, right? TikTok is quick 30-minute, 30-second snippets or whatever, unless they're live. That's my understanding of TikTok. That's all, I don't use it that often. Whereas, I am a big believer in YouTube. So, I go out and search you to quite a bit. And there are many people teaching great things. In fact, I'm going to be one of them because I think it's important for women to jump into this thing, right? Because often in the IT world, we sit back, we step back, and we let the gentleman, the boy, the guys, whatever you want to call them, come up front. And because I am the baby boomer generation, who is, I am my main source of income. And I want to teach other people that are in that same situation, how to use Chat GPT and other online tools to create success, so that they don't end up in poverty, right, because women, especially over the age of 50, or 60, that retirement age, are ending up in poverty. And it's just something that I don't want to have.

Pualena  30:24

Yeah, I love that. They're, these tools are being used, as you said, there are people teaching these tools, they're kind, they want–

Cheryl  30:32

They’re kind.

Pualena  30:33

–They want good things, they want, they want you to succeed. And that. I don't know, I don't know how true this is. But I like to believe that it's true that most people want good things. Most people are kind, most people are not using this technology for evil. Maybe, I know it's like a corporation thing, a government thing. Like it's a whole other can of worms–

Cheryl  30:57

Yeah, it’s a whole other thing.

Pualena  30:59

Totally. And as individuals, as entrepreneurs, as people who are creating this new normal, where we get to have control over our time, our energy, our mindfulness, how we serve, who we serve, and tap into the limitless abundance that's available to us, connecting this network of good people and knowing that what we're doing, the little like, we're like the little fish in this big world together, if we continue on this path, to support each other to utilize tools for good, to create environments and new realities and new normals that are going against those societal, the cycle programming that we grew up with. That's where we can affect change. And I think you're, you are creating spaces for this, through your mindfulness coaching, through your business coaching, through everything that you do, even like. So, we have been working on some projects together, and I've seen you firsthand, coaching somebody on, like, they want a website, right? And that's like, that's it. I'm hiring you for a website. What they don't know is they're also getting this beautiful coaching experience, because a great website reflects the human behind the business. And you can't get to that without a little bit more of a deep dive beyond what's your brand. What's your colors, what's your content? What's your service? Right?

Cheryl  32:47

Right, tight, that's so sweet of you, thank you, we do some good work we get to, we get to work with some really incredible human beings and, and even the ones that were could have been, like, devastating to us, we found the beauty in it. Right? There's so much beauty out there in the world to be shared and locked into. And fortunately, people that get to work with you get to see that shine. Right? Because you're such a loving human being and the kindness that you have, and compassion for people and, and the industry is, is pretty awesome.

Pualena  33:17

Thank you, I feel the exact–

Cheryl  32:19

Don’t cry.

Pualena  33:22

Cheryl! Oh my gosh, well, I cannot wait for everything that you have coming. I think that again, like, likewise, you are a phenomenal woman a phenomenal force in this beautiful space that people, people need what you have to offer. So, can you share with us a little bit about what's coming, and how people can stay connected with you to make sure that when that launches, they can be first in line?

Cheryl  33:56

Sure can. So I have multiple things that are coming out in the next three to four weeks. I would, I would even say I would love to say the next three to four days, which I'm hopeful in that, but I'll put it like long term three to four weeks, probably sooner. First off, I'm going to launch a productivity tool, set of documents that you can use just like check checklist and workbooks. And there's some self-care books in there as well. And that's called Prod Tools and you'll be able to find them on my website at thecherylcooper.com as well as, Minding Your Business, which will be all about educating people in corporate America and entrepreneurs and individuals on how to practice mindfulness in everyday life. From the corporate perspective, it's going to be about teaching IT teams and ERG employee resource groups, about how to incorporate mindfulness to increase productivity, and engagement, and keep people, improve the culture overall. And for individuals, I have workshops and coaching sessions and retreats, and then I am going to launch a group coaching program called Getting it Done with Kajabi. And that is called, I'm not gonna give you the URLs because they're a little confusing. But that is the other thing that will come out. And that, that one's probably the one that's going to be in about a week or two, two-three weeks.

Pualena  35:31

Awesome. So by the time this comes out, I think those will both be launched. So, head over to thecherylcooper.com. Grab a seat. Connect with Cheryl. I mean, this is. So, as you were talking, I did come up with another question that feel free. Like if this goes into another few minutes, like let's do it. You said something that I, I was like, wow, that's a big undertaking. You're utilizing these or you're creating resources to change the way corporations and the corporate world views and teaches and encourages mindfulness. And overall, an overall culture shift. To do that in corporate is a big job.

Cheryl  36:22

And so needed, right?

Pualena  36:23

So needed. So needed.

Cheryl  36:25

With me coming out of it. And being in the industry that I was in, as an IT consultant, traveling the world as a female, as a black female, right? So, there's so many things in the only category in the IT world that was complicated. And so many lessons were learned from that, that drove me into needing, needing not just wanting, needing to understand mindfulness, so that I could heal myself. And right now, in 2023, we are coming out of an experience of trauma that nobody is really, very few people are seeming to recognize, right? I learned this term yesterday. Positive productivity, positive. I'm gonna tell you in a second, but what is toxic positivity? I had never even heard that term before. Have you ever heard of that?

Pualena  37:29

No. Toxic positivity. I'm so curious. Tell me about it.

Cheryl  37:37

I'm fine. I'm good. Everything's okay. I'm doing just fine. It's gonna be okay. Right? That's toxic positivity. Because really you're not. I'm sitting over here swirling in misery. I'm, I'm suffering from trauma from being left out of in the corporate workplace, being left out because I'm afraid to go outside and face life. Because, because you might get COVID. You know, all of those things are traumatizing us as human beings. And nobody's really talking about it. So, we have to find a way to be mindful about how to have those conversations around that, as well as in the corporate workspace. Let me get back to that part. Many, many people are in the corporate workplace are facing microaggressions, discrimination, sexism, harasses them, harassment. And women over 50, which is kind of my target audience are facing menopausal symptoms, where it's an extremely stressful being in front of a roomful of men because I'm in the IT world. I'm the only woman standing up there doing a presentation and bust into a friggin hot flat. It's the worst. So, understanding how to apply mindfulness in that situation is a huge thing. And then bringing together mindfulness as teams just taking walks together, if you take a step away from your meetings, where we're on these deadline-driven experiences, and go outside together and take a long walk, take a 15-minute walk, have a conversation about something besides work, something that's mindful. How beautiful the trees are, the transition from winter to spring, to summer to fall. All of those things make a huge difference. And it begins to shift the culture into a space of a more kind experience. Right? And then if you bring in Compassionate Leadership and teach mindful leadership, that even trickles down into the workplace more.

Pualena  40:04

Oh, my gosh, I would, I would go back to corporate if I could work with a company that was working with you.

Cheryl  40:12

Thank you. Though, the one other thing that's really cool, this is an idea that my girlfriend and I came up with the other day where she, she shared, she works for a masterclass. And they have a mindful room. Right? They have a room where you can go in there and just be and I was like, I want to go decorate those spaces.

Pualena  40:36

Yeah. They should bring you in as a mindfulness consultant.

Cheryl  40:41

I’m thinking, well, we're working towards designing that business for ourselves. Right? That's the other part of being a lifestyle architect.

Pualena  40:48

Absolutely. You made me think of something that if anybody is in corporate, we have like a largely entrepreneurial audience. So, you never know if somebody's like listening to this, and they're still in corporate. Some actually, it doesn't matter what you're in. This is a cool exercise, I shouldn't preface it with that. I did a sort of a team-building exercise with a group that I was collaborating with. And this, it sort of checked all the boxes that you were talking about. And I just want to share it as, a as a tool. So, basically, they, they paired us up. And it was a three day, it wasn't a conference, but it was almost workshop-ish. So, every, every day, every morning, we got a different partner. And the task was to go outside. And each person had to talk for five minutes. And the other person couldn't interrupt, they couldn't ask questions. And so in, there were prompts, right? So there were like two or three questions that you were supposed to answer as you were speaking, and you had to walk. So, it got you out of the event space, you were exploring the place around where we were, which was like a downtown area along the water. And this served two really interesting purposes. Because we're either on sort of the introverted side, where we're like, I don't even want to talk for 10 seconds, let alone five minutes. No, thank you. And it brings you out of that sort of comfort zone into a space of getting comfortable talking about yourself, answering questions, sharing your thoughts, your opinions, your mindsets. And then on the other side of the spectrum, the people who are like I could talk for days, I could talk about myself all day long. They get parameters put on them. And they're, you know, yeah. Anyway, so it was it was just very, very interesting. And as the person who couldn't ask questions, that was also an interesting exercise, because I was so curious about, you know, I wanted to ask a question, to have them elaborate, and then they would move on to something else. And it really, it helps you to be a good listener. And it helped you to understand to what extent they want to talk about it, and when they're ready to move on, tells you a lot about that person. And you can ask the questions after, but when you listen, when you give somebody the opportunity to say what they're going to say and then close it. It's, it's very telling. The third thing that I will say, is as the person who was talking, when I reflected on that exercise later that night, I was surprised at what I said and what I didn't say. Right? Like what–

Cheryl  42:33

Case these were strangers to you?

Pualena 43:37

Well, they were strangers and when given this like space, right, like a lot of times they feel like we talk because we are trying to get all of our