Building Psychological Strength

April Seifert

More and more, people are seeing the benefits of building resilience, building confidence, building mental toughness and flexibility, and moving past fear and anxiety in their lives. April Seifert, Ph.D., hosts this powerful podcast that will help you build psychological strength through interviews and information from some of the world's leading experts in the fields of Psychology and Life Design. It's time to go beyond merely surviving. It's time to thrive! This podcast is brought to you by Peak Mind: The Center for Psychological Strength.

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0357 | How to Build Psychological Safety
Sep 30 2022
0357 | How to Build Psychological Safety
We've probably all heard about psychological safety, but what exactly is it, and how do we cultivate it? This is the topic we're diving into today.Think back, you've likely had a job or other relationship where you felt like you had to guard yourself. Or one where you felt like it wasn't acceptable to show up any less than 110%. Hopefully you've also had the experience of being in truly safe relationships. Ones where you can mess up, stumble, try things and potentially fail, and still be accepted.That is real psychological safety.Today we're speaking with Stephan Wiedner who is a psychological safety expert whose career has focused on developing sustainable high performance leaders, teams, and organizations. His passion for unleashing the collective potential of people has led him to cofound Noomii.com, the web’s largest network of independent life coaches, Skillsetter.com, the deliberate practice platform for interpersonal skills, and Zarango.com, the psychological safety training experts. Stephan has been a guest speaker for ACETech, MAGI, Marketing IMPACT Council, and many other audiences interested in psychology, business, and technology. His writing has been featured in Forbes, Entrepreneur, and other popular publications. Stephan is married with two children and enjoys spending quality time in the outdoors, hiking, biking, camping, and reading.This episode is transformational, and I hope you share it with someone who might benefit.Additional Resources:Free psychological safety assessmentEpisode 261 - Giving Negative FeedbackEpisode 264 - Receiving Negative FeedbackAdvertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
0357 | How to Build Psychological Safety
Sep 30 2022
0357 | How to Build Psychological Safety
We've probably all heard about psychological safety, but what exactly is it, and how do we cultivate it? This is the topic we're diving into today.Think back, you've likely had a job or other relationship where you felt like you had to guard yourself. Or one where you felt like it wasn't acceptable to show up any less than 110%. Hopefully you've also had the experience of being in truly safe relationships. Ones where you can mess up, stumble, try things and potentially fail, and still be accepted.That is real psychological safety.Today we're speaking with Stephan Wiedner who is a psychological safety expert whose career has focused on developing sustainable high performance leaders, teams, and organizations. His passion for unleashing the collective potential of people has led him to cofound Noomii.com, the web’s largest network of independent life coaches, Skillsetter.com, the deliberate practice platform for interpersonal skills, and Zarango.com, the psychological safety training experts. Stephan has been a guest speaker for ACETech, MAGI, Marketing IMPACT Council, and many other audiences interested in psychology, business, and technology. His writing has been featured in Forbes, Entrepreneur, and other popular publications. Stephan is married with two children and enjoys spending quality time in the outdoors, hiking, biking, camping, and reading.This episode is transformational, and I hope you share it with someone who might benefit.Additional Resources:Free psychological safety assessmentEpisode 261 - Giving Negative FeedbackEpisode 264 - Receiving Negative FeedbackAdvertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
How to Use Boundaries to Avoid Burnout
Jul 20 2022
How to Use Boundaries to Avoid Burnout
Burnout is a topic that is becoming so prolific because so many of us are EXPERIENCING IT! Turns out, burnout is a state that is at the end of the road of a long continuum. There are ways we can intervene to reduce the chances of ourselves becoming burned out, but we have to recognize it first.I'm thrilled to be diving into that very topic today.Today we're speaking with Dr. Cassandra LeClair. She is a Communications & Relationships Expert, Motivator, Author, and Podcaster. With a Ph.D. in communications studies, specializing in women's and gender studies, Cassandra is an expert on communicating feelings, setting boundaries, and improving connections. She enables high-achieving women to gain an understanding of their identity and communication practices to improve their relationships with friends and family, in the workplace, and beyond.On this episode with Dr. LeClaire, we dive into burnout - how to know when you're burned out, and what the precursors are. We also dive into the role that boundaries play in burnout. Wow are they important! We also talk about how to figure out what our needs are and communicate them to others. And, finally, we talk about the role that our own behavioral patterns play in our burnout cycle.I so hope this episode helps you or someone you love. You're worth it.Additional Resources:Curate Your Life & Manage Your EnergyHow to Cultivate a Relationship with YourselfThoughts, Emotions, and 'Mom Guilt'From Dr. LeClaire: 30 Ways to Say 'No'Advertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
How to Create a Culture of Wellbeing Around Yourself
Jun 15 2022
How to Create a Culture of Wellbeing Around Yourself
There are few things more fundamentally important than our health and wellbeing. When we have it, we take it for granted. However, when we're told there's a problem or when we aren't feeling well, it's all we can think about.Wellbeing has become even more of a focus since the pandemic because of the experiences we all had over the last 2 years. Mental health has suffered. We've neglected to take care of ourselves and chronic conditions are worsening. Yet, we see many people making professional decisions to help guard the lifestyle they had during the pandemic - particularly if it helped them make positive changes in their health and wellbeing.It's a lot to think about, so we brought in an expert.Laura Putnam, MA, author of the award-winning Workplace Wellness That Works, is CEO and founder of Motion Infusion, a leading well-being provider. Her work has been covered by MSNBC, The New York Times, FOX News, ABC News, US News & World Report, Entrepreneur, Business Insider, and NPR. She is a former urban public high school teacher, international community organizer, dancer, gymnast and now a movement-builder in the world of health and well-being. With a mission to get people and organizations “in motion,” Laura is a frequent keynote speaker and has worked with a range of organizations from Fortune 500s to government agencies to academic institutes and nonprofits.I met Laura at a recent conference, and I knew I needed to get her on the show. I hope you find actionable value in this episode and begin to make healthy changes in your own life.Additional Resources:Workplace Wellness that WorksThe Link Between Self Compassion and Self CareDevelop Better Habits in 2022Advertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
Take a Self-Compassion Break
Jun 8 2022
Take a Self-Compassion Break
There's no denying it - the last handful of years have been very challenging. Aside from the personal adversity we've all felt in our individual lives, we've faced incredible collective adversity. The pandemic. Political divide. Crime and mass shootings. It has all been a lot to handle, and many of us have found ourselves searching for ways to move through it and cope.Thankfully, the field of psychology has a very effective tool for times like these: self-compassion. By opening up to and being mindful of our own emotional experience, by realizing that we aren't alone in the way we're feeling, and by offering ourselves kindness rather than criticism, we can help support ourselves through truly challenging times.The main audio of this episode is a replay of an impromptu self-compassion break I led the day after the mass shooting at the elementary school in Ulvalde, Texas. Quite a few people from around the world joined in community to learn how to apply this important tool during challenging times.Not everyone who wanted to join was able to (it was a very last-minute session), so this week's podcast episode is a replay of the audio of that session.In addition, there is a very valuable section at the end of this podcast about what it means to support other people through challenging times. So many times we say, "I just don't know what to say or do." And so we do nothing. The final segment of this week's podcast helps give you another perspective on those situations, and I give you some practical tips about how you can support others during painful or challenging times.Additional Resources:Fierce Self-Compassion by Kristin NeffAdvertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
Your Body is Your Brain with Amanda Blake
Jun 1 2022
Your Body is Your Brain with Amanda Blake
One of the basic principles of cognitive behavioral theory (CBT) is that our mind and our behavior (and our emotions and life experience) are strongly linked. Our body and our behavior send strong messages that tell us how to appraise a situation and how we might want to respond. Yet, we spend so much energy attempting to ignore it. We focus instead on being "rational," or "logical." We believe emotions are "irrational" and shouldn't be trusted.Today, we're debunking that.Today we're speaking with Dr. Amanda Blake. Dr. Blake is the author of the award-winning book Your Body Is Your Brain, and creator of the Body = Brain course on the neurobiology of experiential leadership learning. In addition to teaching about the art and science of embodiment, she works with progressive leaders worldwide to help them become their best self, enjoy life more, and make a bigger contribution. Once an internationally competitive athlete, Mandy is skilled at cultivating high performance in herself and others. She is a Master Somatic Leadership Coach, holds a degree in Human Biology from Stanford University, and is both a Fetzer Scholar and a Research Fellow at the Fowler Center for Business as an Agent of World Benefit. The goal of today's episode is to help you learn how to tap into another form of insight, the insight in your body, to help you make some of your most difficult important decisions.Additional Resources:Stress to Serenity Centering ChallengeEpisode with my personal coach, Shannon SchottlerUsing Micro Behaviors to Combat AnxietyAdvertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
GET IT DONE: Surprising Lessons from the Science of Motivation
May 4 2022
GET IT DONE: Surprising Lessons from the Science of Motivation
Is it better to set a goal to achieve something or to avoid something? Exactly how detrimental is it to have people around you who don't support your goals? Are big, hairy, audacious goals (BHAG) better to set, or are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals better?The content out there on goal-setting and motivation is conflicting. It can be hard to sift through what is important and what will actually work. Today, we're talking to a true expert - a pioneer - in the field of human motivation and achievement.Today, we're speaking with Dr. Ayelet Fishbach. Dr. Fishbach is a Professor of Behavioral Science and Marketing at the University of Chicago, Booth School of Business and the author of "GET IT DONE: Surprising Lessons from the Science of Motivation." She is the past president of the Society for the Study of Motivation and the International Social Cognition Network and is an expert on motivation and decision making.During our interview we dive into the nitty-gritty of setting and achieving goals. As a bonus, we talk about what all of this means for motivating teams and employees in our current, virtual / hybrid professional landscape.Today we're featuring a true pioneer in a foundational area of research. I know you'll get so much out of hearing from Dr. Ayelet Fishbach!Additional Resources:Listen to a recent episode about how to have better habits in 2022Words matter! Here are some ways to support your achievement using language. Check out Dr. Fishbach's website, course, and bookAdvertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
Achieving Peak Performance (without Burnout)
Apr 6 2022
Achieving Peak Performance (without Burnout)
What does it mean for you to "perform well" or "win" today? Have you ever stopped to consider that? One more question, as a high-achieving person or a top-performing person, have you ever stopped to consider times when it might be ok for you to show up intentionally looking to achieve at a B+ level?These questions sound like heresy when we put them in the context of our traditional, high-pressure professional world. However, as we've learned from the pandemic and from some very high-profile athletes more recently, no one, even high achievers, is infallible.If you are a human being with a body and a mind, you have limits. You have needs. And, you simply can not perform at 150% all the time. And today, we're speaking with an expert who will help us sort through all of that.Today's guest is Lauren Ammon. She is a certified coach who works with athletes of all levels. She helps people acknowledge and recognize their own humanity. She helps people create as much psychological and emotional support for themselves as they do for their physical wellbeing.This episode is for you if you're the type of person who holds yourself to standards that are nearly unachievable. I know you'll get some valuable insight and action out of this powerful conversation.Additional Resources:Listen to my conversation with Gail Golden about Curating Your Life and Managing Your Energy: out our blog post "Creating the Conditions to Thrive:" with Lauren and grab a copy of her free resource: Inquiries: & Opt-Out: