This journey of life is all about expansion. We are all in the process of growing into the women we’ve always wanted to be and are meant to be in this lifetime. There’s always something new to learn in this journey of expansion, and that’s why I’ve found curiosity to be one of the most powerful feelings I get to create.
As women in the second half of life, I see one thing that holds us back the most from what we want: judgment. Judgment, both from ourselves and other people, can have us hiding from the lives we dream of. However, when I decided to welcome and befriend curiosity instead of judgment, I witnessed everything in my life change.
Join me on this episode to learn how to be curious, not judgmental. You’ll hear how judgment can make you shrink away from the life you truly want, why our brains will often default to judgment instead of curiosity, and the benefits you’ll experience when you learn to become more curious on purpose.
If you want to start living your dream life, join my October group, starting October 4th 2023. Click here to join my final group of the year!
WHAT YOU’LL DISCOVER IN THIS EPISODE:
How we’re not wrong for feeling any emotion, whether positive or negative.
Why our brains default to being judgmental.
The benefits of welcoming negative emotions with curiosity instead of judgment.
What happens when you learn how to process negative emotions.
How to become more curious on purpose.
LISTEN TO THE FULL EPISODE:
FEATURED ON THE SHOW:
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I’m Kym Showers, and this is Reinvented After 40, episode number 106, Be Curious, Not Judgmental.
Welcome to the Reinvented After 40 podcast. I am your host, Kym Showers, and I’m a certified life coach for women in the second half of life. Each week I’ll bring you direct advice and inspiring, practical wisdom to help you live your very best life and create a future you’re absolutely obsessed with. It’s going to be fun, let’s get started.
Hey, my friends, welcome back to the show, to my podcast. I just got back from Dallas, had the most remarkable time at The Life Coach School’s Mastermind that they have once a year, that I found out this is going to be the last one, so I’m so glad I went. It was my first one and my last one that I attended. For some reason my brain talked me out of all the other ones, and so I never said yes to it. And this year I’m so glad I went. It was just really fantastic.
It was such a really cool three days and I got to meet up with a bunch of my coach friends, which is always very inspiring for me. I love being together because a lot of times in my life I feel like a fish out of water. I’m just out here doing my own thing, and then when I’m in a room and you guys, there were so many coaches because The Life Coach School certifies hundreds and hundreds and thousands of coaches. So I don’t really know how many people were there. I’m bad at reading the count in a room. I would say maybe 500 people, 500 coaches.
You have to be a certified coach, an active, certified coach to have been invited. And then a ton, hundreds and hundreds of coaches, if probably not thousands were attending virtually. So that’s kind of the new thing they’re going to do instead of having live events, they’re going to do it virtually. So I’m so glad I went and I learned a lot. I met up with two of my coaching friends who reached out to me and they’re just so fabulous to hang out with. They saved me a seat both mornings up in the front row. So I got to sit next to the queen herself, her name’s Brooke Castillo.
And in The Life Coach School world she is absolutely the queen. She started the whole school and she made $52 million last year. The Life Coach School made $52 million last year, which is nuts, so nuts. She’s taught me so much about business, about coaching. So she definitely is a fearless leader and she opened up the whole event. Just sharing about how important it is for us to really practice feeling all out, she called it feeling hard, but I don’t know that I would call it feeling hard.
But I do like the thought of really going all in on whatever I’m feeling and not avoiding my feelings at all and just being curious about them. So that’s why I titled this episode Be Curious, Not Judgmental, because before I found out that I actually create my feelings, that my circumstances don’t and that all of my feelings are right. None of my feelings are wrong. So even if I feel judgmental, that isn’t wrong. I’m not wrong for feeling judgmental. You’re not wrong for feeling judgmental.
That is the human experience because our brain creates our feelings, our brain creates our emotions and it’s supposed to. It’s the way we were all made, which is so good to know. So useful for us to know, so helpful for us to know moving forward to be the healthiest, happiest, the most whole version of ourselves. So I just think of this whole journey, this entire journey of life is expansion, growing into the woman I’ve always been wanting to be, I’ve always been meant to be and you, too.
If you’re a woman in the second half of life listening to this, that’s that yearning in us. There’s always something new to learn. And that’s why I have found curiosity to be one of my most powerful feelings that I get to create, that you get to create. Our brain’s default is to be judgmental, because remember, our brain’s primary job is basically just to keep us alive, so our brain isn’t concerned about our dreams. Our brain isn’t concerned about our goals.
Our brain isn’t concerned about us growing and evolving because our brain is worried about our safety and wanting us to stay small and is always looking for danger. And actually sometimes our brain is judging other people to keep us safe. So our brain is really good at judging and it’s supposed to be and that’s okay. And I think the more aware I became of what my brain is doing and offering me, the less I made myself wrong for being judgmental towards myself and towards others.
And the more curious I decided to become on purpose and that has just benefited me so much in my growth and in my connections and in my business. And I just have gotten so curious about my journey, about myself, my thought, feel, act cycle on a daily basis. Curiosity is just asking ourselves questions like, I wonder why I’m feeling this way and I wonder, if I don’t like how I’m feeling now, what is it that I would like to feel? What would be a more useful feeling? How do I want to show up today? And is that possible for me?
Instead of being mean to myself and shaming myself, judging myself on a daily basis, which our brain loves to do to keep us small and being afraid of what other people are going to think, being afraid of other people’s judgments towards me. What if I just allowed all of it and just got curious about all of it instead of retracting, running towards it and getting curious and not being afraid of it and just going, “I see, she’s just like me.” We’re all so much alike when we can be curious about each other. We all have these brains are trying to keep us safe and loved. We all just want to belong.
So we’re looking for our tribe. We’re afraid of getting kicked out of our tribe because when we get kicked out of our tribe, way back in the primitive days, we would literally die because we need our tribe to survive. But we don’t have to think like that anymore, though our brain still does think like that. So we override that once we get some awareness and some knowledge about how we’re actually wired and we’re wired for survival, we can change all of that and override that survival brain with this intentional way of thinking, intentional way of feeling, and an intentional way of showing up every day.
And so I just loved going back to the event, I love being reminded of how my brain is working. And from my notes, I took so many notes, you guys, I’m just a voracious note taker when I’m at events like this. And then I’ll come home and literally just read one page and just stay on that page for a long time because it’s just something that just I needed to hear. And that really made an impact on me. And that I want to kind of memorize and get in my head.
So, Brooke said on the first day, she said, “The secret to a full capacity life is the ability to feel the full realm of human emotion. Most of us don’t just avoid and buffer our emotions, our negative emotions, but we actually build a life attempting to minimize any negative emotions.” So I just want you to know what that means to me and it’s so, so, so true, especially for those of us women in the second half of life. We don’t know how to feel negative emotions, how to actually welcome them and befriend them and process them and feel them and with curiosity instead of judgment, you see.
So what we do is we build this real small, safe life so that we don’t have to even feel those feelings. We think the smaller we are, so we make our life safe and small. We don’t do anything scary and hard. We don’t put ourselves out in the world because our main fear is what other people are going to say about us, other people’s thoughts and judgments towards us because they have the same brain. So we know that that’s a good possibility.
When I started this podcast, I was very afraid. I knew that people would judge it because I was judging it. I was like, “I don’t really even know what I’m doing. Do I even have anything legit to offer every week?” I just had so much self-doubt about what I was capable of. And I let that keep me from actually starting my podcast and putting it out in the world for several years. I wanted to do it, but I had all this self-judgment.
And then I reflected that self-judgment out to the people, the handful of people in my life that I knew for sure were going to judge me and think that I didn’t know what I was doing. And then tell other people that I didn’t know what I was doing and say maybe some critical things about me. And it’s so fascinating to me that I would let those thoughts from my own brain keep me from doing what I really wanted to do. And I want you to know that’s what you’re doing too.
You’re keeping those subtle practiced thoughts of judgment, self-judgment, self-doubt, and then you are reflecting that out to the world. And you know for sure that other people are going to judge you and say things about you if you do the thing you really want to do. It can be anything but you know what it is. So what I want to tell you is that if you just learn how to be okay with that judgment, if you learn how to leave space for it in your body to feel it, you’ll find out, it’s not that big of a deal.
I just let everybody’s thoughts about me and if they’re critical or judgmental, I let them be right about it. There are probably things I can agree with them on. There’s so much that I just kind of throw against the wall and see if it sticks. And if some random person is thinking she doesn’t know what she’s doing, I’m like, “Absolutely, most of the time I don’t know what I’m doing.” And I can genuinely agree and find humor in that because we’re all just trying stuff. I mean, I really think of myself, you guys as a thought leader, I do now.
And I’ve been doing this work and I have been trying hard things every day and I have been doing things six years ago when I first started that I only dreamt about doing and now it’s just a part of my everyday life. And the whole reason I’ve been able to do it is because instead of making judgment wrong and even other people’s judgments against me wrong, I just allowed all of that. Yeah, that’s what we do.
And if I can just get good at judgment and get curious about why we’re all the way we are and allow it and just know it’s part of our human condition. Get curious about me and the reasons why I want to do the things that I do, the reasons why I’m so obsessed and passionate about building this business and helping women create amazing things in their life. I want so much for you guys. I want so much for myself and I want so much for you guys.
I want us all together just to keep growing and getting better at our feelings and not making ourselves wrong and not ever living in shame and self-doubt, but just living in curiosity and joy and abundance. These are feelings that I create for myself every single day because I allow all the negative feelings, because I’m not afraid of them, because I know how to process them in my body, I suffer so much less now. I don’t keep myself stuck there.
That’s the benefit of learning the skill of curiosity over letting judgment ruin my whole day or ruin my whole week or ruin my whole year. Someone else’s judgment or self-judgment can keep us so small, so stuck in just a rinse and repeat cycle. So I really can say, I don’t know, you guys, I can’t remember the last time I was concerned about what anyone else thought about me. I like to try and just be conscious every day about my thoughts. And if I am feeling anxious, why I’m feeling anxious and get to the bottom of it and process it and let it all be okay.
Because I have this human brain, I expect to be anxious, I expect self-doubt, I expect overwhelm, I expect disappointment. I even had a moment of disappointment this last week at the event because I am going to tell you this quick little story. Because this is the first Life Coach School Mastermind that I actually attended, I didn’t really know what to expect. So I’ve been to other masterminds, my business masterminds and that’s different than this.
So I didn’t really know what to expect, but I paid the money to go and I got my hotel room and I got my flight which I fly first class now always, you guys, which, can we just take a moment and appreciate that. That has just been one of my goals, I just wanted to fly first class and just see what that felt like to fly first class and let that be my norm. And so I just keep choosing that and it’s so fun to be TSA approved and so flying isn’t a big deal to me.
It’s actually something I look forward to because they serve me champagne in a glass and they serve me real food on the flight and I get space and it’s so fun. So I just love that. So that’s just a sidebar, but I want you to know, six years ago when I started, I don’t think I’d ever flown first class before ever in my entire life, in 57 years of living. Because I didn’t think that that was what I could do. I didn’t know what was possible for me then and now I know it’s possible for me. So I want you to know it’s possible for you too.
So whatever it is you’re wanting you can create it, absolutely. And that’s what I’m doing and I’m just going to keep going first and be the example for you. So what happened on this trip, I had this moment of disappointment and I just let it be there and it was so beautiful. And I was just so proud of myself and I gave myself everything. And the disappointment didn’t last very long but I didn’t make myself wrong for feeling it. It was just like, yeah, of course. And here is why you’re feeling disappointed.
And I gave myself so much love, so much compassion and I love that about myself. And I love this relationship I have with myself. It keeps me moving forward with so much positive energy because of it. So what they do though, you guys, at these masterminds and then this happened to be the very last one that they’re going to have, but they give awards. And I was notified, they sent me an email and they said, “Hey, if you’re a coach who has made over $100,000 in a year”, which I’ve made over $100,000 in the last two years, so each year now, so I’ve had two years in a row.
And this is what I didn’t really realize, is that they give either a $100,000 award, which is a six figure award for the year. And everybody that has crossed over $100,000 for the year, so either you’ve made $100,000 or you’ve made $900,000 in a year they give the same award too, but they call it the $100,000 award. And then if you’ve made $1 million in a year or $9 million in a year, they call that the Two Comma Club. And then they give that group of coaches an award.
But when they sent me the email and I think they sent me two or three within a week or two weeks period of time. I felt like I was drinking from a fire hose at that time. They sent it to me a few weeks ago and they sent me an email and they said, “Hey, if you’ve made over $100,000 last year, then you will get an award, but you have to do these five things. You have to prove it. Your CPA has to send a legit letter to us or whatever. I can’t even remember what the qualifications were. But you had to do A, B and C, send a video, send a picture and then send something else.
And so when I got it I was just like, “Okay, so they’re giving me an award.” Then all of a sudden my brain was like, oh, my gosh, you don’t have any time to do that. I had so many other things that I was working on that I had deadlines on that I had to get done. And so once my brain kind of gave me this story, you guys, that I didn’t have time to get the CPA’s thing and get the video done and get some picture in and do the letter or whatever they needed from me. I deleted it.
And then they sent me another one and they reminded me again, “Hey, we’d like to give you an award. If you do these five things, send these things in by this date and then you’re going to get this award.” Well, I deleted that one and just felt so good to make that decision and get it off my desk. I think they sent me a third email. They were like, “Okay, it’s your very last invitation because if you don’t send it in today, then you’re missing the deadline and you don’t get the award.”
My brain had already offered me the story that oh, my gosh, there’s going to be 1,000 coaches getting this award. There’s no way, I mean maybe they would flash my name up on the screen. But to me, the story my brain offered me was it’s not going to be that big of a deal. You’re not going to miss out on anything. You don’t have to do this, just get this off your desk. So I felt really good about that decision. And with that decision, which I always tell myself, this is the right decision. You cannot be mean to yourself during the award ceremony. You cannot regret that you made this decision.
I’m so good at treating myself that way and then having my own back. I was like, “No, I made this decision and it was the best decision.” Well, it was completely different than what my story was in my head, you guys. So there wasn’t 1000 coaches getting that award. Literally there were 40 or 50 coaches getting that award and, you guys, it was amazing. It was an amazing presentation. And you know what everybody got? They got a beautiful blue box from Tiffany. They got a Tiffany award.
And every single coach that got the $100,000 award, which I would have gotten if I would have sent in the requirements, they got to go out in a beautiful dress. So they had already prepared ahead of time because they knew this was a special moment. It was a moment. And they got presented this big, beautiful Tiffany box and then they got to walk up on the center stage, each individually. They got their name announced and they got a picture with Brooke on center stage and then they got to go over and they got the microphone and they got to tell us their thoughts that created this award.
Well, you guys, this was magical. And my friends who I was sitting with in the front row. They got the award and I was so proud and so happy for them. And I felt disappointed. I felt disappointed because I was like, “Kym this is so different than you thought it was. You would have loved to have done this.” I had a sparkly pink dress. If you follow me on Instagram, I had ordered this hot pink sequins dress that would have been perfect for that award ceremony. But I didn’t know. I let my brain talk me out of it.
I did the hard part. I achieved the award. So this reminded me of when my kids in high school, they would do their homework. They would do the hard part but then they’d forget to turn it in. They wouldn’t turn it in on the day that it was due but I watched them, I saw them do the homework, but they didn’t turn it in because they didn’t think it was that big of a deal to turn it in or they just forgot, their mind was on other things. So that’s what it reminded me of.
And I was like, “Oh.” And I felt a flash of disappointment because I love stuff like that. I would have loved to have told everybody the thoughts that created that six figure income in my business two years in a row. And I let that disappointment just process in me and I understood why I did it. And I let it all be okay. But I just wanted to tell you this story because this is what the brain does. The brain talks us out of something but then afterwards, when it’s something that was different than what we thought it was going to be, it’ll kind of shame us afterwards that we didn’t make the right decision.
I just want you to know, I do that too. That happens to me too. I’m just so aware of it. I’m so aware of why I made the decision I did, and why I felt the disappointment I did. During the award ceremony I felt that tentative disappointment like the dress would have been so sparkly on that stage. I would have loved that picture. I would have loved that moment to tell you how I created these six figures. But then I processed the disappointment and let it go and just celebrated because I celebrate myself every single day.
And you know that, you hear me all the time give myself so much celebration for the way that I keep creating magnificent things in my business at the age of 62 and what I would have told this big, huge room of life coaches how I’ve created six figures in my business in the last two years, which means so two years in a row of six figures in a year’s time, which is what they wanted to celebrate is what I think all the time. This is my thought at 62 because I’m 62.
I can create any single thing I want to create that keeps me motivated. That keeps me inspired. That keeps me encouraged every single day. Those are my thoughts. That’s what I would have shared with them. So that’s what I’m sharing with you today. And I will wear that pink, sparkly dress at my retreat in November with all of my clients. So if you’re one of my clients or one of my future clients between now and that retreat, I’m going to show up in my pink sequins dress that I would have worn on that stage with my Tiffany box.
And also I decided I’m going to walk into Tiffany’s and buy myself something from Tiffany’s for the first time to celebrate myself and recognize how worthy I am of anything and everything as are you. I don’t need an award ceremony, though I love an award ceremony. I appreciate an award ceremony. I love the spotlight even though I would have had sweaty armpits.
You know me, I would have loved that moment and I had disappointment because I made the decision not to, I did the work, but I didn’t turn the work in to get the Tiffany award and to have that moment on the stage. But I really had the capacity and joy and the appreciation for every coach on that stage because I know how magical that feels. And also I gave that all to me as if I walked across that stage. So I have no shame about that. I still believe I made the right decision but I am very aware of what my brain is doing.
And I wanted to relay that story to you because when you make a decision, what’s so important is to have your back after the decision is made because your brain will want to tell you, you made the wrong decision. If you feel disappointed, if you feel a sense of scarcity or lack, you should have done something different, choose yourself, choose your decision. Be aware of why you made that decision. Remember why you made that decision.
And in the moment I made the best decision for me because I really had a lot sitting on my desk and I’m really good at taking a bunch of stuff that isn’t aligned with what I’m working on right now. I’m really good at deleting everything else off my desk. So that’s where that fell in that moment because I didn’t know. I didn’t know it was a Tiffany moment. If I’d have known, I probably would have chosen it, but I didn’t know. But now I know and that’s perfectly great and fine.
So I am so good at curiosity instead of judgment. And I know when I drop into judgment, I know I’m there and I’m like, “This is curious that I’m being judgmental of myself or judgmental of someone else.” Maybe it’s someone in my family that I feel judgmental towards. I am so aware that I’m doing it and I know it’s my practiced brain at it and I let it be okay. I can get out of it pretty quick and just get curious about my judgment, get curious about why I think they said the words they did or they’re acting the way they did or they’re making the choices they are instead of judgmental about them.
I use it on myself all of the time to just show myself so much compassion and love. And know that I’m doing it all right and you’re doing it all right and they’re doing it all right. This is just the way that we get to get unstuck and move ourselves forward. And I love that so much, it’s so powerful to realize when you’re being judgmental and to be able to get curious about it instead.
Curiosity over judgment wins every single minute of every single day. It’ll give you every single feeling and connection with people and love for people and compassion for people that we really want to grow in our own hearts and minds and lives.
And also if you’re making a decision right now about my October 4th group, this is my last group of the year, you guys, do not miss it. It starts in just, I don’t even know what date this episode comes out, but you guys, it starts in a couple weeks or a week, I don’t know, but don’t miss it. If you’re on the fence like I was and if you have a bunch on your desk and your brain’s like, no, we’ll do it next year. I am telling you, don’t do it next year. Do it this year. Do it October 4th because everything’s going to change next year in my business. Everything’s going to change in my groups.
So take the opportunity to get in this October 4th group and I 100% assure you you’ll be so glad you did, just like all the people on the Tiffany stage were so glad they said yes to the invitation from The Life Coach School to turn in their work and take the moment to appreciate how far they’ve come and be able to get their moment on the stage.
So that’s how you’ll feel when you’re at my retreat. You’ll go, “Oh, my gosh, I can’t believe my brain almost talked me out of this.” This is how you’re going to feel every week when you meet with all of us on Zoom and you get coached and everybody gets coached. And then while everyone else is getting coached your brain’s getting coached and you’re going to start making so much movement and so much progress in your life, I 100% guarantee it. Alright, I love you all so much. Thanks for showing up today and I will see you next Thursday.
If you love this podcast, I invite you to come work with me. Go to kymshowerslifecoach.com, sign up for my next group and retreat, and let’s create your dream life together.
I’m 62 years old and I’ve created a life for myself that blows my mind every single day. I’ve learned how to build a wildly successful business and create a beautiful, strong, healthy body and grow happy, easy relationships with the people I love the most. I’ve become my own inspiration. The 2nd half of life is by far the most exciting & powerful of all. You can have it too.