Cancel Culture and the Seven Stages of Grief favorite_border

Conversations from the Heart - August 21st 2020

Author: Rachel Brathen

Topics: Healing

Links: Apple Podcasts / Spotify

About the Episode

Rachel’s life has been turned upside down lately in a way she cannot fully describe. In today’s episode, she recounts the story that unfolded in the past week after she was ‘cancelled’ online. Although she feels as if she is going through a process of mourning, she is having difficulty pinpointing exactly what it is she is mourning, and the purpose behind it.

Her family is safe. The Yoga Girl community is strong and connected. Island Yoga is still thriving. So, what exactly is she mourning? A sense of safety? A sense of community? A sense of belonging and feeling at home? This type of mourning is visceral and hard on the nervous system. But as with all hard things, the only way out is through.

Answers may reveal themselves in time, but today all we can do is be kind, find healing, and do more things to connect to peace every moment of our day.

Tune in for a heartfelt, raw, honest account of social media gone wrong and the effects it can have.

Key Takeaways

  • The next time you are on social media, ask yourself if you are there for the right reasons. Are you consuming uplifting, inspiring content? Are you finding a sense of community, of purpose, are you learning and growing?
  • If you find yourself feeling worse after being on social media, if you are arguing, fighting, feeling depressed or numb, put the phone down. Tune in, go outside, talk to a friend. Do something else that has purpose and meaning.
  • Allow others to be human and to make mistakes. We are all human and we are all flawed. It does not mean you should try to cancel, threaten, or harass someone if they have made a small mistake.
  • The next time you sign onto social media, leave an uplifting, genuine, heartfelt comment for someone. See if you can go out of your way to be kind.
  • Be kind. To yourself and to others.


[0:02] Welcome to a brand new episode of the Yoga Girl podcast, Conversations from the Heart. So I, I gotta be honest with you guys, I’ve trying to record that podcast all day. Like an hour ago, I was sitting here in my little sanctuary on my couch, headphones on, mic in front of me. It’s been a good fifteen, twenty minutes just kind of contemplating, you know, “what am I going to say on this week’s show? Where do I begin,” you know, “what am I going to talk about, how am I going to do this?” It’s felt like a daunting thing, returning to the podcast right now.

[0:36] And then, I was sort of saved by the bell, I just, I remembered “oh shit, I have bread proofing downstairs,” that was about to become over-proofed, you know. Oh, my God, that would have been a huge disaster [laughs]. Like such a, such a silly thing. But it was enough for me to like “oh, my God, I gotta go downstair and put my bread in the oven,” you know? So I did that, and then I realized that I had, I’ve been dehydrating a ton of moringa from our latest moringa harvest, and I was just waiting for the oven to heat up and I was like, “you know what? Let me just pulverize this and make my moringa powder,” because I’m like, standing in the kitchen.

[1:12] And then I, I did that, and I spent a good like, 30 minutes just with my moringa leaves and my bread, and returned upstairs, and now I’m in a totally different, totally different headspace. So I’m really, I’m finding that all throughout these days, all throughout this year, you know, this, this gift that is 2020, that there are, there’s something very special about the day to day mundane tasks, right? For me, it’s a lot around the things that happen in the kitchen that just, that just have this amazing ability to, to snap me out of whatever thing I’m in and brings me into the present moment.

[1:53] So, safe to say over the past weeks, I have been pickling a lot [laughs], baking every day, I have been making, you know, kombucha, like a ton of that, cooking, you know, three meals a day. I’m just spending a lot of time…also in the garden, harvesting herbs; I’m making tinctures right now, I’m making oil of oregano I have, I have going downstairs…I have a bunch of those little mini projects. And I was just thinking back to that, in terms of, “how have these past two weeks been,” because it’s been a really traumatic time. And I don’t use that word lightly; if you guys listen to the show, you know I don’t use the word “trauma” “something traumatic” lightly, it has been a really traumatic thing, that me and my family just went through.

[2:39] And I think what’s really kept me, kept me going has been these, these little day to day things, right? [Laughs] I have a little baby watermelon growing in my garden, it’s like keeping me afloat right now. No, but to get, to get serious I guess; so I’m going to assume that you’ve heard last week’s podcast. I’ll give a little like, super quick recap if you’re, you know, if you’re listening to this for the first time and you’re wondering “what the hell has happened to Rachel?” Basically, about, about two weeks ago, almost two weeks ago now — it’s weird how time just kind of flies — I went on Instagram story and kind of casually, without thinking too much about it or realizing what, how big of a deal it was, I went on Instagram Story and told the world, “hey guys, don’t come to Aruba right now. Chill out with the traveling, you know, we’ve seen a massive, unbelievable spike in coronavirus cases here,” and just urged people to, you know, to not travel, basically, if you’re coming from a heavily affected place.

[3:38] And what happened as a, just kind of immediate result to that was that the whole island of Aruba where I live, and I’ve lived for the past ten years, basically — I don’t even know how to describe it — had a, had a really intense, almost like visceral, physical reaction to the words I said. And a little clip of what I said that didn’t give the context, you know, of what I was actually saying was shared, and went totally viral in Aruba and, and I was cancelled, I guess.

[4:11] I was sitting with that term yesterday, just talking to Dennis, like what does it mean, that term ‘to be cancelled’? Or, or to try to cancel someone, like the whole thing. There’s some really cool podcasts out there on cancel culture that are really good, there are books written about this topic, you know; we live in this kind of “cancel culture” age right now, and we’ve seen so much happen this year, you know, I think I kind of, I understand the value and the good parts about it: being able to use social media and the online space to call people out when they’re making mistakes, right? Or when people are, are doing something really bad, or bad people who are out there, things being brought to light and people uniting behind the cause of, of a person, you know, doing better.

[4:56] And what I got to experience two weeks ago wasn’t really that, right? It, it wasn’t, you know, first of all, I didn’t have anything actually cancelled…I don’t know how that, how that really works. To be cancelled, do you have to have a, I don’t know, like if we had to shut our business down, for instance, or if I lost business deals or collaborations, or suddenly no one listened to this podcast any more, or, you know, something, like I had a direct, sort of negative result to that, in terms of, in terms of my business, I guess, then that would be that I was cancelled.

[5:29] And what happened here was because I don’t have, my business isn’t centered in Aruba, business-wise, and you know, all, that whole side of our lives is untouched and totally fine; actually I think maybe it had the opposite effect, we’ve had, last week’s podcast was, had the record of highest, most-listened to podcast I’ve ever recored in the first 24 hours of it’s release; we’ve had full classes at the studio every single day. I think globally there’s been more of a supportive vibe going, but locally, basically, I think, I think — I’m still digesting this, right, so I still don’t really know how to talk about it — I think I had my whole life ruined, to be honest.

[6:11] And I also know that I am, I’m the one in charge of that, you know, depending on how, how I see it, you know; the good friends that I have here, on the island, are still my good friends, they’re actually closer to me now than they were before, you know, we still have a beautiful house, we have a beautiful family, all our immediate, kind of close-knit parts of our lives are still the same. And especially now in coronavirus times where, you know, I’m not and about, I’m not going to the bars, or going to brunch, or venturing out, you know, in all these social, social ways, which normally I don’t a lot anyways. But so, you know, in person I haven’t experienced this, this cancellation of my whole being that, that, that, that unfolded here.

[6:56] But basically we, we spent about — and it took almost a week for this to actually, you know, calm down — we spent a good week, we had like three or four days that were peak horrible, horrible, of just thousands and thousands and thousands of people sending me abuse, harassment, emails, letters, DMs, Tweets, YouTube comments, Snapchat, Instagram comments, Facebook comments, every platform that I’ve ever been present on in my life, just hate, basically, started, started pouring in. It started like a little trickle, and then became a tidal wave. [Laughs softly] Became basically a tsunami of just really intense hate.

[7:41] And even saying this now, like talking about this now, I can kind of sense my heart goes like [gasps] it’s like a little hard to breathe, in a way. I’ve never experienced anything like this in my entire life; I’ve never, ever…I haven’t even experienced this, like, on the sidelines, you know? I’ve never witnessed something like this unfold. I’ve never seen something like this happen to someone I follow online, happen to a celebrity that I am like, invested in, happen to a friend, happen to an acquaintance, you know, never.

[8:13] So honestly, you know, [laughs] the closest I can get to, and I was really thinking about this, like when have I kind of watched, you know, because I know this has happened to, of course, a lot of people this year; there’s been horrible, like racist stuff that has been unearthed, a lot of prominent figures, especially in the U.S. in the media have kind of lost their positions, I think, in, in, in — I don’t know how to call it — in society or in, in their businesses, or, you know, TV show hosts, things like that, because bad shit they’ve done in the past has been unearthed. And I think the difference here, for me, is, is one: what happened was a very local thing, I think people from abroad didn’t understand “why is this a big deal?” I’m just mimicking and repeating what hundreds of thousands of people are saying, what every country in the world has issued as like a national recommendation, you know, to not travel, or to slow down travel in the worst midst of the pandemic, you know. So for most people abroad, this, like I think it was really confusing, like, “hey,” [laughs] you know, “Rachel’s just, just trying to be responsible and protect, protect this place where she lives, where she’s really vulnerable.”

[9:20] So I think it, it, I think for most people who aren’t here, in Aruba, I think it was more like, “what the hell is wrong with that island? Like what is going on, this is insane,” you know? And then there were people who got really invested, especially people in the, in the community group we have on Facebook, and I think if you’re in the group and you kind of came in to support me, I just want to say thank you, that was, I saw a lot of really sweet things pass by, and people who got really involved, and we had so many, you know, sudden like, five-star reviews on our business, on Google, and on TripAdvisor, and on Facebook, and just kind of people wanting to help because we had so many people give us one-star reviews locally.

[10:04] So it didn’t really make a dent, like actually in the end now now we have better reviews, we have a higher rating than we did before. Like all these things, if I break it down to the pieces where, like, “okay, if I put my whole heart and like [laughs softly] my whole inner wellbeing, you know — which of course is the most important thing — but if I put that aside and I just look at the logistics of this, if I look at the material aspects of ‘what was the actual end result here,’ aside from my well-being, right? I’m going to put that aside.”

[10:34] Well the end result was we had more people listen to the podcast, we had more people come to class, we had better reviews on all of our business pages online, but this podcast, this is a big source of revenue for us, so I know we’re going to have an upswing in, in revenues come our way because it was very, very, very listened to show last week. You know, in terms of those pieces, everything’s fine, right? Like I don’t have anything where I can say, “oh, I had a big material loss,” like, that I can point to. Like nothing was vandalized in the end, no one broke into the studio to, to light it on fire the way they said. We didn’t even see a drop in attendance, right, at the studio.

[11:12] So like all those things that, that we thought was going to happen, like, “our lives are going to be over,” which is what it felt like, like it didn’t happen. And I know a lot of that is as a result to, or thanks to so many of you guys listening being super supportive from afar, and, you know, no one asked you to do that. And I just want to say a big, big, big thank you if you, yeah, if you, if you are trying to show us support or love or even thinking of us from afar, just so you know that I felt that. I really, really, really did.

[11:45 — Commercial Break]

[13:17] So I guess the, the most important part, or the part that really lingers is my own well-being, right? Like that’s the, that’s the piece of this puzzle that isn’t really fixable, I think. And I’ve been trying to, I guess since this went down, like I’ve been trying to kind of look at it over the past…like it’s been almost two weeks, and it’s almost been like if you look up the stages of grief, like it’s kind of bizarre. Like it really has been, been so eerily similar to that, you know, because in the first moment when this kind of, you know, when this wave of I guess hate and upset hit, it was just total shock. Like I couldn’t believe it, it was just “no, no,” like it was really…my jaw on the floor. Like I had a whole, I think I had a whole, almost a whole day of not being able to grasp what was happening, where I was kind of going online, trying to explain myself a little bit, and then things started, just got worse and worse and worse and worse, and it was just like, “no, but this cannot be happening. This is not, this does not represent the community where I live, like there’s no way,” you know?

[14:25] And people that Dennis and I used to call friends, or, you know, acquaintances, or people who knew, yeah, people who will hug me, and smile, and send me texts on my birthday, and this kinds of people, not our closest friends, but people who are close enough that they’ll say happy birthday, you know, those kinds of people, we suddenly going online, tearing me apart, right? So there was definitely like that first stage of shock, and then the next stage, you know, if you know the seven stages of grief, the next stage is denial, like, “this is not happening.” And I, I [laughing] I turned my phone off, right? I told Dennis, “hey, let’s, let’s just, this is going to pass, like this is not, this is not what it looks like, this is just a fluke, this is just one like stupid blogger with a grudge against us, you know, trying to do something bad. Like, let’s just turn our phones off, let’s go surf, let’s take Lea to the beach, let’s just ignore, like this is not, this is not real, “ right?

[15:23] And we went surfing, like we went all the way to the north shore where we didn’t have any service or anything, and Dennis like, got in the water, ten minutes later came right back up. And I was like, “hey, what’s, what’s going on?” And he was just like, “I am so stressed out I can’t surf. Like being in the waves, not knowing what’s happening, like not knowing how bad this is getting, not being able control the narrative or even be aware,” he’s like, “we gotta, we gotta go back home. I need, I need, I need WiFi, we gotta go back home.” So like, that was our moment of denial, you know?

[15:54] Third stage is bargaining, which was definitely me like, [laughs] you know, trying to go online like, “hey everyone, you misunderstood me, I didn’t mean that,” like, trying to negotiate. I was super invested in, in communicating with people like through, through WhatsApp and direct messages, talking to people like, “hey,” you know, trying to explain myself, basically. Like, “hey, this is not, this does not warrant that,” you know? “This is not, it’s not okay for you to tell me you’re going to come to my house and kill me. I was trying to protect, like, this island, here’s what I meant.” And I would go into these long, long explanations of trying to bargain my way for people to understand, you know, which only made everything worse.

[16:34] And then, the next stage of this is guilt. Like I had, I don’t know, probably, probably two days of just, you know, like I think I apologized to Dennis like once an hour. Like I felt like I ruined our lives, I felt like I’ve embarrassed myself, I’ve embarrassed him, I’ve embarrassed our family, I felt so humiliated, guilty like, “I can’t believe I did this to us,” you know? Like, “I caused us all this harm, all of this is my fault; I shouldn’t have been online, I should never have started and Instagram account, I shouldn’t,” you know just feeling horrible and guilty and trying to think of, you know, Lea’s going to go to school and she’s going to get bullied because people are going remember this forever, and Dennis will never be able to go and be in his normal social circles, because there was people in every social circle that we know that, you know, not only things like, “hey, that was a stupid thing to say,” but the things like I’m a horrible, horrible human being and I should leave this island, right? I should go back to my home country, I don’t belong here.

[17:35] So I had for sure, like two days of just guilt, you know. And the next stage of that, which I think is kind of the stage I was in when we recorded last week was anger [laughs]. Like I don’t know if it came off, if you heard last week’s podcast, but I took, you know, the whole day we were planning to record, I didn’t want to do it, I was contemplating cancelling everything, like, “cancel all the podcast for that week,” because it was just so much, you know, and just the, the hate, and the death threats, and the I didn’t feel safe, you know, it was just way too much.

[18:06] And then Dennis was the one who said like, “hey, let’s do it together. Like let me lead the conversation,” he made a joke, like, “let me be the host,” and I was like, “okay.” [Laughs] “You be the host.” And like 30 minutes before we recorded, I was just crying, you know, I was just like, “no, no. There’s just no way I’m going to be able to talk my way through a whole hour podcast and talk about this. How am I going to put words to this when I’m still in shock,” you know?

[18:31] But then something happened, almost like, I think it was the intro to the podcast, he was just, he makes me smile, he makes me laugh like all day. You know, if you heard last week’s podcast, just him trying to do the intro: like we spent 20 minutes trying [laughing] to do the intro of the show. And then I was just laughing so hard, and then the energy of, of last week’s podcast didn’t become what I thought; I thought it was going to become one of those tearful, like super sad, depressed kind of, kind of shows, you know, which I’ve had in the past, talking about something hard. But it didn’t! It was more like, “hey,” I felt solid and grounded and all of it thanks to Dennis, for sure.

[19:06] And was even able to communicate some of my anger, you know, like, “this is so not okay. It’s just not. It’s not.” And that stage, the anger stage is kind of what I spent, I don’t know, I had almost, like almost the whole last week, up until two days ago, I’ve just been pissed. Like I can’t even, I can’t even explain it, I’ve just been, you know…I don’t even feel shock anymore, I’m not in denial, I’ve stopped bargaining, I don’t feel guilty, I just, it’s just I got so, so, so fucking angry, you know? Like, “hey, I’m a human being, human beings make mistakes, I made a mistake. I said something, I said something stupid, I fre…I said something thousands of people are saying every day, and I said it at a bad time, and I said it in a bad way,” you know.

[19:53] I apologized, like I explained myself, and it didn’t matter. Like it didn’t matter. It was kind of like all of Aruba needed a scapegoat, all of Aruba needed someone to hate. Like everyone needed someone to blame. And every just like, got to unite for this common cause of just like, trying to tear my life apart, basically. And the things that were told to me, the things that were told to my family, that the threats that came in about our business, about my child, people telling me that they were on their way to my house, they’re going to kill me, should burn, burn my studio down with me inside, someone said they wanted to stab me, someone said they know what beach I frequent, next time they see me, they’re going to drown me; in these comment sections that have all this hate, all this abuse, people start sharing photos of Lea, “here’s the family, here’s the three year old,” you know. People sending me their, sending me my address, like “I know where you live,” like it was like [sighs] Like I, I still cannot wrap my head around people writing this to a, to a human being, like to a person, you know.

[21:00] And I can, I can understand the anger and the backlash and kind of all the bad things that kind of led to this moment, right? Like this was a very bad moment for Aruba; we are still, today, I’m recording this on a Wednesday, per capita in the world, Aruba is number one on the list of most cases of corona. We now have more cases per capita than the United States. It’s like Aruba is, is, is in the midst of it, right? It’s really, really, really bad.

[21:28] And it didn’t really matter that the same day that I went on Instagram story to say, “hey, don’t travel here, now,” out of fear, out of worry for our kids, like out of worry for this island, that same day, you know, all of these airlines stopped traveling here, like all those things happened, that didn’t matter because I, I was the person to hate, you know? Everything was all of a sudden my fault. I got to kind of represent everything that’s bad, and wrong, and, and that anger, honestly, like it’s, it lingered with me for a really long time. To the point of me not being able to kind of sit still, like I felt so agitated, almost a whole week just agitated, couldn’t be in stillness. I felt like I had, I don’t know, what, five days in a row drinking wine every night, which normally we don’t do, just out of this feeling of I couldn’t settle in myself, I had a really hard time being in my body. Like I didn’t feel, didn’t feel safe, and I just felt fucking pissed.

[22:23] And, I started making lists, this was like, Day Three or Four of my anger, I started making lists, like, “okay, here are the people I know who I know posted something.” Like I got really petty about it. And I have like, [laughs] and this actually was helpful for my anger: like Dennis asked, like, “how can you, how can you move through this anger and express it when you don’t have one single person to be angry with?” You know, it’s not like, someone wronged me, but like a whole country got together to take me down, basically, to, to dehumanize me, to threaten me, to try to get me to leave my home, to make me feel unsafe, to call me the worse names I have ever seen online. Ever. I mean ever.

[23:05] Like there’s a lot of things I cannot repeat on this podcast, like we would have to bleep that shit out because it’s so vile, you know. And then, and then writing this list of like, “okay, I have this list of like, 35 people [laughs] who normally, when i see that at brunch, or at the bar, or on the beach, I would walk up to them, hug them, you know, ask them how their family’s doing, they would ask me how my family’s doing, it’s like, people that we know, like that have my number, they can call me any time. Those people, in terms of like, “okay, when we are back in a normal space, here are people that I will never work with, that I will never look in the eye again, that you know, like we will make sure we never have a collaboration with these people,” because now already things are turning, and we had brands and businesses here wondering about local promotions, because I mentioned that before things turned really bad.

[23:54] And I started getting like, you know, like, like “I hate these people,” like that feeling of like, and I, I, I’ve had a lot of anger in my life, like I’m really good at processing and moving through anger, but that feeling of vicious hate, just like, like the person who, who started, the first person who shared a photo of my three year old in the comment section, like I’ve been obsessing about that person, you know, like what goes through their minds, what goes through they’re, how do they live, what kind of person is that, if they’re able to actually to put a child’s life in danger, right?

[24:28] And then there were other people who, who commented positively on the fact that that person did that. Like I got into all these comment threads and wrote these people’s names down, and like went on their Facebook pages and looked up their employers and drafted emails, like, “hey,” to send to their employers, “this is the kind of person you have on your team, a person who’s willing to endanger a three year old’s life because they’re having a bad day,” right? Or because they’re swept up in a storm of something bad on social media, you know. “How do you sleep at night?” Like I did all of this.

[24:57] I didn’t send anything, I didn’t take action on anything, but it actually felt good just to kind of sort it out in my brain a little bit. To actually be able to identify the worst of the worst, it wasn’t the whole island, you know, it’s not like I, I can walk around holding a grudge toward all of Aruba the rest of my life, but it was handful of very vicious people, you know. And, just, just kind of going through that structure, in a way, helped. It really did.

[25:27] And then two days ago, yeah, in my anger stage [laughs] it’s funny, I don’t know who told me, someone told me, like a friend of mine told me, who was it, that, “okay, this is a like a trauma, it’s obviously a trauma, and chances are you’re going to go through the stages of grief, that you go through after someone had died.” And I was like, “but no one’s died, it’s, Aruba died,” that’s how I feel: I feel like all of Aruba died, I don’t belong here anymore, I cant live here anymore, I don’t trust it anymore, I don’t feel safe anymore, Aruba has died.”

[25:59] And then she was making a joke like, “yeah, but it’s kind of how it works, like look out for these things,” you know? And then the moment I did, I was like, “yeah, that’s been it, that’s literally been it.” And in the anger phase, I started running [laughs]. I started running, we have a treadmill at home, like I’m not leaving the house, obviously, or anything, but I started running, and I’ve been running really fucking fast. And I’ve been running really far, and I’ve been running in a way that I have never ran in my life. Like I, [laughs] I’ve had podcasts about running, because you guys know, I have this long, there’s like a longing inside of me to want to [ding]…that’s my bread [laughs]. I’ve got to go take my bread out of the oven. Give me a moment and I’ll be back to talk to you about anger running.

[26:46 — Commercial Break]

[28:04] Okay, my [laughs] the lid is off my Dutch oven. So you guys know, if you ever make bread in a Dutch oven, keeping the lid on for the first half hour creates this amazing crust, and then you take the lid off so you get all the browning and stuff. But [laughs] yeah, so, anger running, I’ve never done this in my life, I think I’ve seen this in movies, like you’ve seen someone upset, or moving through something hard and they go for a run and they’re like, angry, getting things out. I’ve never had runs like that because I’m a terrible runner and I’m not a [laughs] I wish, I wish I was a runner, but I’m not really. So my runs are usually, like I think I run like Phoebe in friends, like I really think that’s more my [laughing] style.

[28:47] But this week, I’ve been running, I got on the treadmill every day, it was, it was like the only way I could get my body moving; I didn’t want to roll out my mat, I didn’t want to practice, I didn’t want to do a dynamic meditation, which I found super odd because I’ve doing my dynamic meditation, I did 50 days in a row, and I just had this feeling, “no,” I couldn’t get there. So I’ve been running. And I’ve spent like, sometimes an hour, sometimes 75 minutes on the treadmill, like alternating between running, like sprinting, [laughs] and jogging, it’s been really bizarre.

[29:17] And then two days ago, I just, I, I had probably one of the worst days, no, no days are worse than the, the weekend when everything happened, when I really felt like we were unsafe, that was the worse. But after that, like just the worst, the worst day. I don’t know, I just couldn’t, it was like I was walking around with a heavy black cloud over my head all day. And I couldn’t get up, like I couldn’t get out of it, I couldn’t, couldn’t see clearly, you know? Couldn’t be in my body, couldn’t be here.

[29:51] And then it was Dennis who was like, “hey, I’m gonna take Lea, we’re going to go and leave the house so you can do a dynamic, like you have to do something, you have to, you gotta. Just do it.” And they left, and I did…I did a burn meditation, which is like, the conscious emotional release part of the dynamic, but I did only that, but that I did that for about an hour, or 45 minutes. And I got so much out, like I cannot, it’s the reason my voice is kind of hoarse now, still but, I was just, it was my first moment of being able to move some of that anger through, right? So after that actually, you know, I stopped obsessing about the specifics of the people who were involved and just, you know, I got some, was able to become more objective and kind of step away from the immediate intensity of the personal dynamics of the whole situation, right?

[30:46] And then, after that, so it was like pulling a plug. Like, this is two days ago, or three days ago, I don’t know. I think two days ago. And after that, it was like pulling a plug, you know, on a drain. And I started, I started crying. [Laughs softly] And I could cry now just sharing this, but the next stage, you know, of the stages of grief is depression. And I hadn’t really felt that way, like I’d felt sad and upset, and I’d gone through the emotion of all the stuff, but it was like after I was able to move through some of that anger, it was like the anger was this huge obstacle, you know? It was like fiery and intense and hard, and then I was able to process some of that, and then I got sad, you know.

[31:32] And it was kind of the first, yeah, the first moment of me actually being really, really, really sad. And that’s where I’ve been [laughs, sniffs]. That’s where I am, now. I’m still sad. And it’s a different kind of sad, like in the beginning it was like sad mixed with shock, and disbelief, and guilt, and all these other things, and now it’s just sad. Like I’m just sad. Like I’ve had three days in a row in the morning waking up, and Dennis turning over and hugging me like, you know, “how you doing?” And I go, “I haven’t even gotten out of bed, and I already want this day to end.” Like I haven’t even gotten out of bed and I’m already, I already feel depressed. Like I already, nothing had to happen today for me to feel depressed; I didn’t have to be reminded of something, or read another comment, or get another email, it’s just I, like I open my eyes in the morning, and I feel depressed, like that’s, that’s how I feel.

[32:27] And I have been through, through depression in my life, not to the extend of, you know, not being able to get out of bed, like I’ve never experienced that. I have had some really like hor, hor, hormone-related bouts of depression in my life, especially as a teenager, when I was like, 16, 17 and I was on the pill, I had like a long stretch of time of just, like I didn’t know I was depressed until I got off the pill, and then it was like everything eased up and I realized like, “oh, I’ve been a zombie for six months.” Like I’ve had that, I’ve had, you know, a lot of loss in my life, people die and pass away, and hard things happen, but the difference I think there is like, I, I was able to point to something, you know? My best friend died in a car crash and I could, whenever that, that kind of dark, black, heavy cloud, just I would wake up and I would feel like that, I had something really specific to point to, you know, it’s like I lost my best friend, it would, it would be stranger if I didn’t feel sad all the time, right?

[33:27] And then I would have moments of joy and gratitude in between, but you know how grief is, it’s so fucked up and hard and beautiful all at the same time. And now, this feeling is totally different, this feeling is not at all…because that grief, or that kind of grief of having lost somebody you know, you know, in way, strangely — and usually we can’t really connect the dots of this until afterwards, or until more time has passed — but it’s like that kind of grief, it has a sense of purpose to it. Or at least that’s been my personal experience of, of losing people close to me in my life. That when we’re grieving someone that we’ve lost, there’s purpose to that grief. It’s almost like deep down, under the heavy layers of pain, we know that this feeling, it’s moving us forward. It’s like being in the midst of it, being in that grief, being in that pain, being in that depression, that sadness, it’s like we’re clawing our way through the dark. And we don’t know where we’re going, we don’t know how long we’re going to be in the dark, but we know it’s purposeful, because it’s, it’s eventually what’s, what get us through to the other side, this feeling is healing, right?

[34:37] So, there’s a different kind of feeling to that. And I’m not saying I would, I would exchange this feeling that I have now for losing someone in my life, like obviously not. But this, this sadness that I’ve been experiencing over the past days, it feels totally pointless. That’s what I feel. It feels totally purpose, purposeless, it feels pointless, it feels hopeless, it feels like, like it doesn’t feel really valid, because nobody did die, you know? It’s like, I also feel like, like I can’t validate or actually hold space for my own feelings in a way, because I feel like, like it’s weird, I shouldn’t feel this way. We are so blessed, and I choose to be online, like I choose to be on social media, and I was the one who started all of this, you know? And it’s like we’re so blessed, we’re all safe, like nothing bad did happen, I have a lot of support in so many different ways, we still have a big brand, and a big following of people who love me, and support me no matter what. Like it’s like all those things still stand, you know, so it’s almost like I can’t validate my own feeling of hopelessness, or sadness, or grief in a way, so it just feels pointless.

[35:54] it feels like I shouldn’t feel this way. Which is, which is a strange feeling for me to have because I, if you listen to this show, you know, you know 90 percent of my life is [laughs, sniffs] holding space for emotion, and heart healing, and using the tools to, to move through, through hard things. And now, I just feel like, I feel like there’s no reason for me to get up in the morning. I feel like I powered through this podcast really well, up until just now [laughs, sniffs]. Like, I can talk about this and we’re so blessed, and I’m so grateful for so much, and actually everything is okay, and you know, no one did break into our house and, you know, like no one did vandalize our studio and [sniff] we didn’t even lose money, [laughs] didn’t lose, you know, didn’t lose social media followers, didn’t lose money, didn’t lose students, like what’s the loss? [Laughs] Really?

[36:54] And I think maybe if I, I don’t know, maybe it would help [laughs] it would be easier to navigate if I did have a, a, like a loss that was palpable that I can touch or point to, you know? I think why this is, like what makes this all so, so hard is I don’t, it’s like the loss that I’m experiencing is a loss of community, right? It’s a loss of, it’s a loss of trust. It’s a loss of, of feeling at home, you know, I feel like my ground shifted. Like it really, literally did [sniffs]. And it’s not like I think if I go out in public, people are gonna…like last week I was sure, for sure, if I would’ve been out in public and people would’ve seen me, like people would’ve been yelling at me, or pulling at my hair, or spitting at me, or leaving me notes on my car, like it was so vicious for so long. And anyone who says, you know, “no one was going to act on anything,” people did act on a lot of shit. We had people in front of our house, we had our alarm system go off several times, we had, you know, super threatening shit come our way.

[38:00] [Sniffs] We had people — and this to me, is like, beyond me — we had people email us [laughs] to our studio address on behalf of entire huge corporations. Not management, or actual corporations, right, but people who worked there saying I’m banned for life at this place, I can never return. And of course, now that we’re doing some digging, like, “okay, if we brought that forward to that person’s management, or manager, it’s not true,” right? It’s not like, condoned by that business, but that’s what it feels like, like a lot of people got angry enough to actually sit down and look up our address, and share pictures of our kid, and write emails on, you know, with letterheads of businesses and places of work, and start petitions, and like, people did shit, it wasn’t just passing by and leaving a comment and moving on with your day, you know. It was, it was really, really, really, really vicious and really hard.

[38:56] And what it means is, is that that feeling of like, “hey, I live here, like I belong here,” which I’ve felt for ten years, you know; my daughter is born here, Dennis is from here, his whole family is here, our friends are here, our business is here, our lives are here, right? And I never once felt not welcome, or like, “maybe this isn’t the place fo us to be,” and even though, you know, obviously I wasn’t super immersed all across the island and all the parts of our, of the local community because I think if I did, this wouldn’t have happened, you know? Anyone who ever, you know, has been to Island Yoga, anyone who practiced — that’s the beauty of it, I think — anyone of our core community, anyone who was already practicing at the studio, they just shrugged their shoulders and moved on with their day, because they knew, “oh, this isn’t, like this isn’t correct. This is not who Rachel is. This does not represent her, or her brand, or anything,” you know, because they know us.

[39:55] And I think where things got really vicious and bad were from people that didn’t know us, or people who knew us who had some sort of grudge, or holding onto something negative, or, I don’t know. And maybe if we were more present in different facets of the community, this wouldn’t have happened. But this feeling that there’s no, that feeling of there’s no, you know, going out to eat in a restaurant, going to the store, like venturing out the little space, the little box of this house, our garden, and maybe the studio, like there’s nowhere I feel safe, you know?

[40:30] And not in the sense of “oh, someone’s going to physically harm me,” but safe in terms of feeling welcome, or appreciated, or knowing that the efforts that we’ve put in, or that I’ve put in for so long, that they’re worthwhile, or appreciated, or helpful, or, you know, I’ve lost all of that. And of course what it’s also bringing about is this complete feeling of uncertainty. Like, I don’t know where we’re going to live now.

[40:58] [Laughs] I genuinely don’t. And talking to Dennis, he does not in anyway agree, like he does not, he does not want to leave, and definitely, you know, like we’re not talking about packing up our shit and leaving now, but we do have all of our lives in complete, total uncertainty, just like everybody else, you know, this entire year. And we’ve been looking at properties in Costa Rica for the past, yeah, for the past year, or two years, thinking about that. Talking about, like anytime anyone has ever said or asked me when, “which school are you going to pick for Lea?” When she starts like, you know, actual school wen she’s six or seven. And my answer has always been, “oh, I don’t know if we’re here then.”

[41:42] And I don’t know why. I just could never really envision myself, you know, it’s like, “20 years from now, is this where we are?” Like this was kind of, I don’t know, it was all very, very open. And so now I guess the shift now is I feel this sense of urgency, like, “yeah, I don’t, I don’t, I don’ want to live here long-term, anymore.”

[42:02] Maybe I’ll feel totally different at the end of this year, or next year, or something like that. Maybe I won’t. But that feeling of like, “this is home, this is forever home, this is, you know, let’s grow the business, let’s continue investing here,” you know, that I, I, I don’t feel that way, at all. I feel like I don’t want to invest any money on the, into the island anymore; I feel like I don’t want to develop what we’re already doing, like I don’t feel any sort of longing to, to continue here, I guess. Knowing that it’s no longer a safe space for me, and maybe also, you know, maybe the hard truth is like it never really was. I don’t know.

[42:44] You know? That, that, that love actually wasn’t here, that I’ve been living under some illusion somehow. And I know that’s not the case for like our closest community, but for, yeah, for this island as a whole, like it’s a very bizarre, weird, totally fucked up situation…like I don’t even know how to explain this to someone, you know? If they weren’t here, if they weren’t part of this or watch this unfold online, like how do I explain? “Yeah, I’ve basically been like, exiled from the, from an entire, from an entire country, you know.”

[43:12] And Dennis is like, “well if we move now, then it’s like we’re going to prove them right, and then everyone who instigates this sort of abuse, and hate, and harassment, they’re going to feel like they have power and they’re going to continue doing this to other people.” And that’s something that like, I, I’m not even thinking in those terms, but Dennis has been, he’s been at the police station every day [laughs] every single day, filing reports in different areas and, and I don’t even know how it works.

[43:38] I don’t care. Like I genuinely feel like this, there’s nothing that’s going, nothing going to get better in this sense, it’s not going to help, you know. But he feels really, really strongly that this is like, you have to, we have take action in every area we can, because none of this that went down is okay, or right, or justifiable, you know, by any means.

[43:58] So [sighs] I don’t know. Like speaking from the heart, like I don’t know how to, I don’t know how to do that because I feel like…yeah. This kind of [sighs] and it’s also…sorry, I’m having a hard time finding words, because I’m a super resilient person, right? I’m super strong, I’m super resilient, I’ve been through a lot of hardship in my life, like I have dealt with, you know, negative comments online, and people not liking me, and having really strong opinions and views where people disagree, like all of this. There’s something about this amount, like the sheer volume of the hate that I, that I received these past weeks; like there’s a limit to have many times you can read, “you’re horrible,” right? “You’re horrible. You’re a horrible human being, you deserve to die. You shouldn’t live here. Go away. Die somewhere,” you know.

[44:57] Like, “you’re, you’re, you’re the worst human being to ever walk this Earth.” The thing that say like, “bitch, whore, cunt, fatass,” like those kinds of didn’t really touch me so much, but the ones that were really, really, really like, you know, you can tell they’re sent with passion, that’s from their heart to mine, you know, “die,” like, “you’re the worst human being to ever grace this Earth. You’re worthless. Pathetic. Horrible. Bad.” Like I’m having a really hard time, I think my nervous system is having a really hard time digesting and processing the sheer volume of that, like there’s a limit to how much of that one single person can receive, and read, and not have that affect their mental health. Like…

[45:41] And I could be super cool right now and say like, “that doesn’t phase me, that’s just people I don’t know, and people online, and people go crazy online,” and yeah, but it’s also like I’m also, I’m a real, I’m a real person. I am not some persona of a yoga girl who’s pretending to be something online, or putting something out there that’s just a brand, or a business, or like I’m a, I’m a person, you know?

[46:08] And I spend a lot of time like doing very, very best in this life, trying to be of service, trying to do good things, trying to change people’s lives, trying to, trying to be purposeful, you know? And that feeling of just, there’s this, this amount, there’s more hate towards me present where I live than I think toward [laughs] coronavirus, than I think toward any corrupt politician, or any of the real, big, serious reasons people have to actually be genuinely upset, you know? That feeling, it’s kind of…it shook something inside of me and I don’t know how to reconcile it with being here. Both being here as like being present in this country now, [sniffs] but also being here, being in my body, being…being present as I move through my day, you know?

[47:01] Yeah, I don’t know. I, I [laughs], like I feel, someone else told me, who was it? See, my memory’s like, my memory is, is, is really bad over these past couple of weeks, I think because I’m not here, right? I think I’m disassociating, or I’m trying to disconnect; it’s like been too much to take in, so I’m like disconnecting in a way, you know? And because pf that, I’m having a hard time remembering basic stuff that I normally, you know [laughs]. But someone else told me, “oh, but this is going to cause PTSD, like you’re going to feel some sort of post-traumatic stress after this. It’s going to take time,” and, and, you know, and I’m speaking to my therapist every week, like doing all the things I normally do, and still moving my body, and taught a yoga class today.

[47:48] Oh, I was going to lead with that and I forgot. I went to the studio first time, taught a class, it was no big deal, jam packed class, everyone super nice and smiley and regular feeling at the studio, and it, it’s like, it’s not like, it’s not like the world has ended, and there’s real problems in this world: there are children starving, children trafficked, like people who can’t feed their kids, like there’s horrible, real, injustice happening in this world so, like, how much space am I going to sit up, take up, sitting here talking about my little thing that happened on the Internet, like who cares?

[48:31] Like that’s a slo what I feel, “okay, like I don’t want to waste people’s time talking about this, because there’s more important things to do than, than this, what the fuck,” you know? [Sighs] But I also know that that’s, that’s a lie, right? Like if I’m not able to process, I’m not going to be able to do any good.

[48:54 — Commercial Break]

[50:15] Someone asked me “how is Lea Luna doing? How is she dealing with this?” So, the day that the, the day when everything was the worst, I think for sure, for sure she knew something really bad was happening. And then we had friends come over, so she had some like other people who could be more present with her, because both me and Dennis were in like shock, I think. And then the next day — and this is something she has never done, never, ever, ever — we were, like I was cooking breakfast in the morning, and then Dennis and I were talking, and talking intensely, and we got quiet, like there was a gap in sentences or something, and then I hear her over from the kitchen table going, “um hey, papa, keep taking to mama.” And I’m like, “what?” “Just keep, talk more to mama. Like, keep talking to mama.” I’m like, “why does she want us to keep talking? Wait, she doesn’t want our attention over there, you know.

[51:10] So I go look, and she took a big, fat, black crayon and she was just like, drawing all over — and this is our freshly painted kitchen wall, like we just painted all the walls in our house. And just big, black, angry marks, you know, all over. And she’s not, she’s never had a phase like that, she’s never…she’s super into rules, and what’s right, what’s wrong, you know, she would never, she’s never, ever, ever, that’s just not who she is. And then she just saw, like I caught her eye, I was like, “Lea!” And then she started bawling, and she just cried and cried and cried and cried and cried.

[51:49] And I know whatever that was was, you know, some sort of reaction on, on everything, that horrible, intense, shitty energy and vibration that’s been a part of this house for that time. So I think, at the end of the day, I sat her down and I tried to explain, I said, “I know mama wasn’t, wasn’t so present with you yesterday,” and, “how did you feel,” and then she keeps, she keeps coming back to these, I don’t know where she picked this up, if it’s because she’s hearing me talk about safety, she goes, “mama, are you safe?”

[52:18] Also at night, in bed, before going to bed, like she’ll cry, I’ll leave the room and then she’ll cry, and I’ll come back in and go, “well, what’s wrong?” She’s like, “can you lie here mama? Are you safe here with me?” And I’m like, “do you mean are you safe with me?” You know, like is she… “yeah, can papa come in? Can we all lie in the same bed? Is it safe here? Am I safe here? Are you safe here?” So she’s picking up those, you know, that kind of wording, but also probably that feeling of not being safe, you know.

[52:45] I never, like I haven’t hovered her bed at night for two years, right, since she was a baby, and now I’m doing that again. Like going into her room every night, turning the alarm on before we go to bed, and like, for sure I have an energy about me now that probably is telling her that, “mmm, it’s not so safe here anymore,” you know? So of course she feels that, but she also wasn’t a part of, she didn’t hear anybody say these things, she didn’t, of course she can’t read, she’s not, she’s too young. So I think she’s still as protected from all of this as she could be, I think.

[53:22] So yeah, and speaking of, of questions, I just, I haven’t been on social media, right, for almost two weeks. I’ve had [laughs] like less than an hour of screen, know you have the screen time function on your iPhone? Mine has been below the one hour mark, you know, for the past ten days, or maybe at least the week. And at the bulk of that one hour is like we have our, we have Hue lights at home, so our lights sit in the WiFi, and our music, and you know, I look up recipes for baking and stuff, like that’s basically what I’m doing on my phone.

[53:52] And that part, you guys, I gotta say, from someone who has been present on social media since 2012 — and I mean like, present on social media, like talking to people all day, posting every day, you know, sharing, sharing, sharing, and even if I’m having a more quiet day, like I’m still there, you know, in my DMs, or in my comments section, and scrolling, and reading, and, you know, super, super online, all the time — it’s been…it’s been a huge relief. I don’t know, someone asked me, “are you coming back to social media?” [Laughs] It was like it feels bizarre to not do that, like I don’t know, I don’t know if that’s something that, that I would want long-term.

[54:58] Someone else asked like, “what’s Yoga Girl, like the business, the brand, the platform without social media, like does it work?” I don’t know. Maybe we’re about to find out. I really don’t know. We, we did have a, you know, this week was supposed to be our big launch for our pancakes, you know, we have our first product released from our new food brand, Fämily Foods, is a pancake and baking mix that we worked so hard on for so long, and that was supposed to be last week. And of course, didn’t happen. So what we did instead was like a little pre-launch, so just for people who had signed up with their emails on eatfä nothing on social, you know, I wasn’t there.

[55:19] And, and we sold like, it was, it was so beautiful, to be honest. It was so beautiful to see that, “oh, we can have a successful pre-launch completely, without me having to be there.” And that’s a relief, you know; at the end of the day I would love to, to be present online to that extent that, that it fills my heart, right? Or to the extent that I can feel purposeful, or do something good, and I don’t feel that way, you know? And I haven’t, haven’t really felt that way for a long time, like that zest of like, inspiration: to talk, and speak, and share, and that purpose and I, I don’t feel that way.

[56:01] So having this time now without being online, without sharing anything, without talking about…without taking any pictures, I haven’t taken a single fricken picture. I took one of my, of my watermelon [laughs] like [sniffs] not taking pictures of anything, it’s kind of, yeah. Of course the moment you have distance from social media, you realize how insane it is to be on social media all the time.

[56:22] And, you know, I can’t say that without coming off super hypocritical because I have an entire business and platform built on social media, right? And of course so many blessings that have come through that as well, and all the support that I’ve felt over the past two weeks I wouldn’t have had if it wasn’t for, for social media. So there’s so much good there too, but I have just, I have lost sight of, or I’m not able to define like, do I, do I feel better without it?

[56:51] And I think, you know, that’s a question worthwhile for all of us to be asking ourselves, at least just to get present with it, you know? Does being this present on my phone, in my day, does it make me feel worse? Does it make it harder to get out of bed in the morning? Does it make it more challenging to enjoy my life, you know? If that’s the case, then yeah, fuck man, we should all get off, we should all get off our phones and look up and, you know, watch the sunrise, and talk to our people, and be present in our lives, in a way that I think our entire generation and generations that, that are coming now, aren’t, you know?

[57:31] And it is a paradox [laughs] to work in yoga, and be a yoga teacher, and guide people through meditation, and to do all of that through the online, through the online world, of course it is. So there is something so beautiful about it too, that we have access to all of that. But then for me, it’s like the line is so blurred, you know, impossible to just, to just record this podcast, and Yoga Girl Daily, where we do meditations every week, and journalling prompts, and all this actionable stuff that I love sharing, and then post something on the platform, whichever platform we are choosing to be on, once in awhile, or when you’re inspired, and then not be there. Is that possible? I don’t know.

[58:11] I’m very black and white, you know? It’s like I’m either [laughs] I’m either not running, ever, hating running, talking shit about running, sitting on the couch [laughs], or I run 75 minutes straight, right, as fast as I can [laughs]. I don’t have that, like, casual, like “hey, go for a run two, three times a week,” you know? Like “find some balance there.” Nope. It’s all or nothing.

[58:36] The other day I was like, “Dennis, maybe this whole crisis is what finally gets me to become a real runner, and then maybe I’ll sign up for like a 10K. Maybe I’ll run a marathon!” [Laughs] He was like, “okay, how about, how about we like, take a moment now and get through this next week and see how you feel man?” Because, you know, knowing me, this is not going to last.

[58:57] But, yeah, there’s, that’s, striving for balance, you know, we’re all looking for that in our lives. So, [sniffs] you guys know I like to end the podcast with like some word of wisdom, or, you know, “here’s my story, how do you apply that to your life,” and honestly, I don’t know, you know? I don’t know. I know, you know, from now on, I would love it if we were all a little more cautious around cancel culture, or at least a little more present, maybe, with the issue at hand before jumping on the train to Crazytown, or jumping into threat, or abuse and harassment, to take a moment to, to, to just maybe do our research, right? To learn about the issue of the thing that’s happening, like what’s actually there behind that?

[59:45] There’s a lot of bad people out there, there’s a lot of bad shit that goes down, you know. There are incidents and terrible things that people do where they absolutely deserve to, to, to have backlash, you know, to not have the opportunities and the privilege that came from whatever platform they have because they’ve done something irrevocably terrible, you know.

[60:08] And then there are times where people just make mistakes, right? Where, like where I really feel is where I fit in, you know? Is this making me, am I a bad person now? Does this cancel out all the good that I’ve done in my life? That, that feeling, like, I think that’s been the shittiest part is like, “oh, I’m not allowed to be human. I’m not allowed to make a mistake,” you know?

[60:30] I’ve been on Instagram for eight years and managed to, you know, do well I guess, because this has never happened before. I’m not allowed to make one mistake; I make one mistake and I’m out, it’s over, you’re the worst person now. Everything you are is terrible, go back to your country. Like that to me is like…yeah, I have a hard time accepting that, that I can’t be a human being, you know? But it’s okay for everybody else to make mistakes; I don’t think the people who were saying the worst things are flawless, you know, people who have never made mistakes in their lives, it’s like, “where’ the humanity in this? Where is the kindness? Like what is, what is social media doing to us?”

[61:12] And we know that the, the situation of the world, the situation of this island, like there are so many factors that play a huge part in this. And if we weren’t where we were in terms of coronavirus, in terms of economy, like no, this wouldn’t have happened. So it’s also, you know, the final stage, final stage of the stages, seven stages of grief is acceptance, and hope [laughs, sniffs].

[61:36] I’m not quite there yet. I don’t know, acceptance is like…I, I’m not there yet. Hope, I’m definitely not there. I guess I’m still in depression; I’m still sad, I’m still grieving, mourning, trying to define what exactly it is I’m mourning [sniffs]. But I have had moments of, of just a lot of love also. Like, “hey,” you know, ‘how much are people suffering if they’re able to do this? How much,” like those people that sent those threats, people that sent the worst things, not just the threats, but the worst abuse, the worst harassment. Like a girl on the island, she’s a sister of a girl who used to be a super close friend of mine, and her, her name was in every comment section. Every comment section, every post I saw, there she was, telling the world what a piece of shit I am, how worthless I am, how pathetic I am, how terrible of a person I am.

[62:33] And I was thinking about her the other day like “how does she, how, how is she doing?” You know, “how is her mental health? How is…” Like those kinds of people who made it their job, right, to tear my life apart; or those kinds of people who shared photos of my kid, you know, like how, how are they doing? There’s no way, no way those people are living fulfilling, happy lives. Like are they feeling safe in their bodies? Are they feeling safe in their homes? Are they okay? No. [Laughs] I, I doubt it. I don’t think you, I don’t think you can speak in that way, or act in that way and also be okay, you know?

[63:15] We all know hurt people hurt people, so if anything, like I definitely had those moments of, “man, does this island need compassion and kindness?” And I would love to arrive at a place where I only feel that, like I can look at this whole situation and see it for what it is, which is suffering, right? A lot of pain, a lot of suffering. And how can I be of service to that? How can I help? Maybe in a way that I haven’t before, or, or elevate that, the service that we’ve done for ten years here, like how can I, how can we go deeper? How can we take this and do something good out of it? Like turn it around and…[sighs] yeah.

[63:54] I don’t know the answers to those questions, but I would love if that was the end result of this, is that I felt more kindness and more compassion toward everyone on this island, yeah, then, then that, that would be a good thing. Not there today though [laughs softly]. Let’s see about next week.

[64:12] [Sighs] So again, I want to thank you, thank you for listening, thank you so much, thank you guys for checking in on me all the time [laughs], so many of you are. So to close, I would love to leave you with a little action of the day, or this week. Next time you’re present online, or present on social media, how about we do two things: next time you’re present online, take a moment to ask yourself why you’re there. Like what's the purpose of you being there right now? Is it helping you, right? Is it uplifting? Are you getting inspired — because there's so much inspiration to source online. Is it, you know, giving you great tips for self-care, is it making you feel a part of the whole, have you found community, interesting conversation; are you learning are growing? Wonderful, you know.

[65:01] If you don’t know why you're there, or if you're there in argument, or writing vicious things to people, or upset when you’re online, or feeling pulled down, or low, or triggered, or depressed, or numb — numb, I think, is a big one for a lot of people — then get off, right? Get off, take a breath, turn your phone off, do something else.

[65:26] And then the second thing, next time you are present, you know, with purpose, online, to maybe, if it feels good, see if you can go out of your way to be kind, right? There are tons of people who just need something uplifting now, you know? Where like a kind, genuine comment can turn their whole day around, or give them hope, or have them feel like they’re not alone, right? So there are ways to validate and see people online, and just share with them, “hey, I’m here if you need me,” you know? Or, “if you need my help, I’m right over here,” or, “hey, you’re doing a good job, you’re good enough.” So easy. It’s easier, I think, I would love for it to be easier to be kind than unkind, right? And once we start getting into the habit of just being kind, man, might change our lives too.

[66:20] So thank you guys for listening. I love you so much, I appreciate you so much. And I’ll see you next week.

[66:30 — End of Episode]