One of the only things you can count on in life is change. Whether it’s a cross-country move, a relationship status changing, or just a small shift in your daily routine, change is inevitable. The key is in learning to be resilient. My next guest shares the inspiring story of her own major life change, the short-term and long-term effects of stress, and how to master the art of the P.A.U.S.E.
Raychel Perman is a Certified Life & Leadership Coach, Speaker, Best-Selling Author, Podcast Co-Host, and Co-Founder of RAYMA Team. She shares her story of overcoming trauma and living with mental health challenges & chronic pain to inspire others that brokenness does not disqualify them from living and leading well. It prepares you.
Think meditation is hard. Do me a favor, take a slow, deep breath in, and now breathe out. Congratulations, you just meditated. Hi, I’m Krystal Jacosky, and this is Breathe In. Breathe out a weekly mindfulness and meditation podcast for anyone ready to own their own shit and find a little peaceful while doing it.
Krystal Jakosky: Welcome back to Breathe In, Breathe Out. I’m Krystal Jacosky and I’m really excited to share this week’s episode with you. I first met Kevin Pinnell when I was a guest on his podcast, which is Award A Better Life. It was such a delightful experience. We had so many things in common that I really wanted to bring him on my podcast so that we could talk about the indigenous people. Kevin began his journey with the indigenous people of North America in the early nineties. He met Ken two feathers early on in that journey, and Ken Two Feathers became more than Kevin’s teacher. They had a wonderful friendship. And 10 years into that friendship, Kevin wrote the book, Two Feathers, Spiritual Seed Planter as Kevin Laughing Hawk, which addressed two feathers life and Native American spirituality. There is so much more to his experience and his life. This is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. We’re going to talk about some of the keynotes of Kevin’s experience. I really hope that you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed having him on my podcast. Hello, and welcome back to Breathe In, Breathe Out. I’m Krystal Jakosky, your host, and I am so excited to have Kevin on our show today. Kevin Cannell, welcome.
Kevin Pennell: Thank you. Great to be here. This is awesome. I’ve switched roles for a change. I’m not a host. I’m actually a guest.
Krystal Jakosky: Oh, isn’t that fun? When you get to switch it up a little bit. Kevin and I have actually been recording right now because whenever we have the opportunity to chat, Kevin and I go off on so many different tangents and so many different realms, and it’s because we are both interested in so many different things. We are always looking for something new to learn or something new to teach, which means that we have a plethora of things that we can talk about and go down rabbit hole after rabbit hole after rabbit hole. So we’re going to make an effort to keep this a little shorter, meaning not four hours long, because we could talk for hours.
Kevin Pennell: We’re going to try to focus.
Krystal Jakosky: We’re going to give it the college try, you know, the good college. Not the one where you smoke pot for the first four years and then decide to do college. We’re going to actually try to focus. Welcome to my world today. Kevin, tell us a little bit about yourself, who you are and what brought you to my podcast studio.
Kevin Pennell: Oh my goodness. Well, if you got about two or three hours, hang in there. It’s just actually been about a year ago that I decided, I’m going to try doing a podcast because for 35 years off and on, I was in broadcast journalism and radio. So I just have a lot of fun with it. And I published a book, worked on a couple of other books, and did some magazine articles. I love to write, but for whatever reason, the publisher just wasn’t impressed. Okay, this is great, but you’re not going to publish it. It’s good stuff, but we’re not going to publish it. And I’m going, Yeah, fine, whatever. And I realized part of writing is you have to be able to accept a little two letter word called no.
Oh, that’s standard procedure. And I just, in one of those moments, I said, you know, I did broadcast journalism and I did human interest stories for years. I really enjoy doing that, just listening and talking with people about their lives. And literally, I think it was like 3:30 or 4:30 in the morning. That tends to be what I call my spirit time. Some of the most significant little truths that I’ve ever had. The title for the book that I wrote came to me in the middle of the night. And when I wrote that book, I wrote it from five o’clock in the morning until 6:30 every day until I got done with it. But that’s my spirit time. This time it came through as you need to do a podcast called Toward a Better Life.Read More
I went through the same thing with Krystal when she first came on my podcast saying, Okay, so when do we really start the podcast? And we had probably, I don’t know, know, 20, 30 minutes on the phone before we actually started. So I appreciate Krystal’s insights into helping people, helping people where they are, helping people to help themselves, and learning that life really can be a truly enjoyable experience if you look at it that way. And if you choose to look at it from a negative perspective, guess what you’re going to get. And I said, You know, we have so many different things in common that we can do with that so this is cool. This is awesome.
Krystal Jakosky: I love you and I want to put you in my pocket and just carry you around with me. Thank you for the boost. One of the things that Kevin and I have the opportunity to really connect with and is dear to my heart is actually the native path. And so today, in the interest of bringing more awareness and more understanding about possibilities and different healing modalities that you guys can dive into, finding your peace, finding your direction, finding your life, I really wanted Kevin to come on and talk about his journey with that native path so that you guys can understand a little bit more, because some of us are really drawn to it. I can tell you that any time I hear those drums, I am bouncing and walking around right along with it, because there is something that speaks to my heart and soul, and it brings me joy to be in that area. So Kevin, what drew you to the native path? Tell me about a little bit of your background and what brought you to that new place?
Kevin Pennell: I became really curious about how the indigenous people worked in close harmony with the world around them. They saw the trees as their brothers. You see the animals as their brothers and sisters. They would call the trees, not trees, but they called the brothers, called them the tall ones. Would call the stones, the rocks, grandmothers and grandfathers. They would go into a sweat lodge or they’d call them the stone people because they were the wisest people, because these stone people have been around for thousands of years. And the only way that we have to communicate is if you’re really in tune with stuff. You’re walking a long garden past some place, maybe out in Colorado or Texas or Minneapolis or wherever you might be in this little stone. You’re just drawn to it and you say, I got nothing, but it looks cute, so I’ll pick it up.
And you, and if you actually tried to tell that person, you do know that that stone just talked to you, Right? They’d say, Yeah, Right. What planet did you just fall off of? But I was always intrigued by the natural world, and I’ve always been intrigued by all the beauty of the natural world. And then I found myself just getting interested in that. And I started to say, Well, I wonder if I have any native blood in me. And I said, Well, you know, and at the time I was living in Broward County down in Florida, and we had a pretty big library. The library in Broward County was huge. And they actually had an archive section, and you could go in, believe it or not, Krystal, you could go into there and you can look up the original manifests from the original Mayflower.
Obviously they’re micro-fish, but it was amazing. We’re talking about handwriting Okay. That they had preserved from some place. And I’m going to just casually conclude the other, you know, and the curiosity part comes in. Oh, I wonder if Pinnell is in the right place. Yeah. 1637, third Mayflower, there’s a Pinal. I went, Oh my gosh. My family’s been here since 1637. And I know my dad had told me that, you know, the other crew came in from Wales, around sometime in the mid to early 1700s, because our ancestors fought in the Revolutionary War. So, geez, you know, common sense will tell you, I’ve got to have native blood in me. Right. I’ve been around here for three to 400 years. It’s got to be native blood in me. Right? So I started that path and I started chumming around with different folks, and I was really drawn to a couple of folks.
One of those people as a person, I wrote about. The book is Two Feather Spiritual Seed Planter, and it’s written by Kevin Laughing Hawk, which is my spirit name that he gave me. But when Kenny and I first met, and this is shown in the book, when Kenny and I first met, I went into that guy, and I’m just talking with him because I was curious, and at the time I was doing news for local a radio station, and I said, You know, I wonder, I’m not really into the idea of interviewing this guy for a program, but I did see him identified in a local newspaper, The Gainesville Sun, I think it was. I sat down and I talked with him, and I just said, You know, you’re an interesting man and I would really like to share a little bit more with you.
He said, Sure, by all means, what questions do you have? And that short little time ended up being two and a half hours, difficult to do with you. Well, if you knew two feathers, you’d see that we’re on the verge of destruction here for taking up time. Oh, wow. Both of us just went on and on and on. And one of the most significant things that he said to me, he looked at me and he said, I do have a question for you, Kevin. I said, What’s that? He says, Do you know who you are? And I said, Well, sure. I know exactly who I am. I’m Kevin Pennell, I’ve been a pi, I’ve been a cop. I was in radio, I’m in radio now, and you know, I’ve done this, I’ve done that. I’ve done, No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Do you know who you are? And I said, I, I don’t. He says, We’ll go to that later. And he told me also, You know so you write news stories? I said, Yeah. He says, You know, maybe someday you ought to write a book about me or write a book about us. And I went, Oh, yeah. Right. Yeah. Like, I’m going to do that. 10 years later I did.
But, you know, so that’s the process. I was, you know, Kenny and I got together and I looked at him as my, my good friend, my brother, my teacher, my mentor. We are convinced that we were related in a past life, and we’ve got proof in our hearts and our spirits that that’s very, very true. And if I had a picture of him someplace, I would try to pull it up here to show you, because particularly in the cover of my book, and if you go to Amazon, you can see it. And people would look at that picture and they’d say, Well, it’s about Ken two feathers. Why did you put your picture on the cover?
And I didn’t. That’s Kenny, that’s how close we looked like each other. And when I was living up in Maine I’d be on the street walking along and somebody’d holler across the street, and this is a little village up there called Bethel. He would holler across the street, and they would say, Kenny. Kenny. And I’m looking around Flood, trying to find Kenny. I can’t see Kenny anywhere, I turned around and then said, Oh, wait a minute. You’re not Kenny
They were talking to me. Things for a compliment. Yeah. Thanks for the compliment. I really appreciate that. Nice thoughts. But Kenny taught me so much about this stuff, and I was still convinced that I was Native American. You know, after all, I’ve been here for 300 and something years. My family’s been here that long. I mean, my gosh, I’ve got to be Native American, Nope. Few years ago, Vicky, who’s my partner, got me one of these DNA test things, and I found out that I am Scott Welsh, Irish, and a little bit of German. And here’s the cool part that I didn’t expect. I’m also a Viking.
That answered a lot of questions for me, because if you go into some of the history of the Carolinas and some of the Virginias, you’ll find out that a lot of the intermarriages that took place a couple of hundred years ago with the Cherokee people, and it looks like they would intermarry with Celtics. If you start looking at the Celtic traditions, and you look at them in comparison to Native American ways, both of them honor the earth, both of them look at the spirits of the world, the spirits of the animals, the spirits of the earth, the spirits of everything. And that’s enough common ground to cause a beautiful relationship between people. So instead of turning my back on it saying, Well, you know, I’m not Native American, I’m a human being.
And that’s what Kenny would tell you. He says, there is no such thing as a Native American, an indigenous person, this, that, the other, we’re all human beings. And that is the essence of it, is to become a human being and a true human being as someone who not only honors the earth, but they honor people and they honor others’ ways. And that continued the journey. But it wasn’t until about a year or so before Kenny crossed over that I came to the realization that, Nope, I’m Scott Welsh and Irish mostly. And I’m okay with that. But in the midst of all of that, what I learned over a period of 15, 20 years of exposure to some of the indigenous people, particularly northeastern woodlands, Kenny was a penobscot and Sarney. You have Pinco, Mick Mack, Ma, Paqua, you know, all that group that’s up there in Maine and New England. And I sat under his tutelage and learned a great deal about sweat lodges, about getting, giving a name about the significance of having a spirit named significance of the sacred pie, significance of the giveaway. All those beautiful stories and how I made them a part of me. And in sharing that book, I encouraged other people to do this as well, from a standpoint of not becoming a Native American, but to become a better human being. So there’s the short version.
Krystal Jakosky: The question of, do you know who you are? Is a terrifying question, I think, for a lot of us. I mean, on the one hand, absolutely, I’m so and so, and this is what I do, but do you really know who you are? And to be sitting, you were drawn to indigenous people, you were drawn to the Native American ways. And to have this person sitting there asking you such a deep question You said, I’m Kevin Pennell, and I do this and this, and this and this, But inside, were you freaking out?
Kevin Pennell: Oh, yeah.
Krystal Jakosky: How did you move from, was it in just that one interview where you moved from where acquaintances and we’re checking each other out, and I wanted to know more about you that you automatically moved into, I want to take you under my wing. Or how did it change from just these two people meeting to, you need to learn more about who you are, and I want to teach you?
Kevin Pennell: It was one step at a time. In the book I talk about asking for a teacher or looking for a teacher, and it was still a curiosity. And I’m a curious person. I’m a very curious person, underscore that several times. And curiosity can be a blessing, could also be a curse. In this instance, it was a blessing. And the curiosity continued that Kenny says, Oh, we’ve got a Native American gathering coming up. Next month they have what they used to call down around Dad city, They called it the full moon ceremony. And it was beautiful, and it was on the full moon. And you would, we would have all these different people come and, and it was intertribal and even those that were not native and yet called to it, and don’t let me forget, I want to go to that in a second. Their essence was drawing me toward a deeper understanding of these people that were so beautiful and so wonderful. And I said, You know, there’s got to be something here and I can’t quite figure it out. So I kept going back to Kenny and talking with him. This wasn’t just one conversation. And to answer your first question, I’m sorry, was, you know, did you at that point in time realize that you were the student and he was the teacher? The answer is no. The universe knew it.
Universe knew, it’s taken us this long to get you two guys together crying out loud. You have no idea what a pia this has been.
And as we moved along, I started hearing about gifting tobacco and asking for a teacher. And really what that means to ask an indigenous person to be your teacher. Kenny taught me a lot as far as being very traditional in some of this stuff, and I’m not dissing anyone for any of this, but, there were people that if you wanted a teacher, then you not only gifted tobacco, but you gifted money. And if you wanted a sweat, you gifted money. It just goes on and on and on. And I’m not I’m not dissing anyone because that’s just their path. But the way that I was taught is, if I want a teacher, I gift them tobacco. If I want a sweat lodge, I gift them tobacco. If I want them to awaken a spirit pipe for me, I gift them tobacco. Why tobacco?
It’s bad for you. No. What it is, is, is it actually, the smoke is lifted with our spirit thoughts in the smoke to creator to the universe, to the ancestors around us, because that’s how the prayers are lifted. That’s why so often tobacco is looked at as a sacred herb, because its essence, the smoke as it’s burned, lifts our prayers and our intentions to the universe around us and the ancestors. So you would gift tobacco. And after a month, I’d say, I realized I really do want to know more about this. And I ended up gifting Kenny Tobacco and asking him to be my teacher. Part of that entailed, when you asked someone to be your teacher, you are like, I still use the term today. You’ve opened the door. You’ve opened the door to what you’ve opened to allow that person to share with you what they find to be the most benefit for you to be a better human being.
And guess what? Some of those things they tell you, if you’re a good teacher, you may not and you probably won’t like. Because they tell you stuff that is better for you as a person. And I’m not going to sit here and tell you that it was all actually roses. As roses have thorns, Kenny upset me enough a couple of times that I wanted to punch him. I’m not kidding at all. It just irritated the crap out of me. And he had me, I’m gonna steal your term. He had me own my shit. And I really didn’t want to own my shit because it’s my shit. It’s not somebody else’s. And it’s so easy to say, that’s your fault. You just don’t want to admit to it because it’s your perception. Yeah. So after a while, I became his student, he was my mentor. So he was my student, I was his student, I was his man, he was my mentor. I’ll slip on that because the interesting thing is, when you get in deep enough with somebody, the roles do reverse. You establish a beautiful relationship that is beyond words.
And as he would say, I’m not sure about our timeframe here, but if you can do this while we’re talking, I’m going to find something since it is going to be shown on YouTube, there’s a beautiful little story if I’m allowed to do this. Okay.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. This is your podcast. Well, it’s my podcast. You are my guest. You can get to do what you want.
Kevin Pennell: If I can do this in a camera. Okay. So I’ve got, There we go. I’ve got three dots here, right? Yeah. Okay, So now I’m going to take this, I’m going to draw a couple of lines here, and here it is again.
Krystal Jakosky: Further back, hold it further back so we can see it better. There we go. Okay.
Kevin Pennell So when we’re here, this is you and I talking to you, Krystal. Okay. Yeah. But the relationship that we’re forming also forms another relationship.
This is our higher selves communicating and they’re communicating in terminology. We cannot identify, we cannot communicate because we don’t know, we don’t understand that language. So in a higher form, you and I are communicating. And that’s how Kenny and I were, and that’s how all relationships are. If you really look at it, and it’s when we have these types of relationships that people should understand that. I don’t want to go down this road because it’s a whole nother podcast. But if you are in a situation where you need to end a relationship, this needs to finish or not finish, but you’d redefine it.
Because you’ve had that communication at that level. And so you have to figure out a way to make it real, to make it a good thing. And one of the things that we’ve used, I know some people think about affirmations, and I got an affirmation years ago, and this was not native, it was not indigenous, but it came from a spiritualist that I met down in Florida. He was an elder in a group down there. And the words go, you put a name or an object in the beginning of this affirmation, you’d say, Jack, I now release you to your good. The good of one is the good of all. Now keep those three little things in mind that I just showed you because Jack and I have had a relationship. But now we need to shift that relationship. So the I that I is the divine side of me, the higher self that I now release you to your good, I now release you to your higher self.
I now release you to the good intentions that you have. The ultimate result of that is in doing so, you help everyone and yourself included, because the good of one is the good of all. And that’s how you do stuff. If we realize that it really helps our relationships a lot more, so you can see where I can, we can really go to town on that. So that information was shared with me in that it’s so important that we really do get the picture of what it’s like to have a relationship with someone and to be integrated with that person because we are not just linear, but the whole picture. Yeah. So we’re embraced together in that whole thing.
Krystal Jakosky: There’s a ton in there. And I was trying to quietly and discreetly take some notes because there are so many things that I want to jump back to. I do the same thing. So, I love the illustration when I am working with a client or when I am being taught with somebody. I have, I have for a long time, 20 years, been very aware of my higher self. And there have been plenty of times that my higher self has been talking with the other person’s higher self. Then I understand. So it helps me to see their perspective. It helps me to see their point of view, why they feel a certain way. When I’m working with a client, I make sure that the conversation between my higher self and myself is very clear. So that if there is information that I need to give to my client while I’m teaching them how to listen to their higher self, it’s a very sacred and beautiful connection that you can build and you can really honor like yourself with your higher self and understanding and trusting the information that you get from them.
And as a teacher and a student connection, it’s even more sacred and special because of the added depth of the relationship that can happen because of the fact that you’re willing to spiritually connect together. My husband has this phrase, he says, the student becomes the master. And I think that goes to your comment that, that it does, we shift for a little while. We become, we are the teacher or we are the student. And after a little while, we are going to shift and we will be the other, we will be the student or the teacher on some level in some manner. And it’s a beautiful give and take because we’re all human and we all have experiences that we can share to help change lives in beautiful, gentle, and not so gentle ways. Some of the best lessons that I have learned are the ones where I just kind of want to flip the finger and say, Screw you, I don’t want to talk to you anymore.
Kevin Pennell: And then I have had those clients who they don’t talk to me for a week or two because what I ask them, what I am inspired to ask them from my eye or power saying, Hey, you need, you need a bigger nudge than what you’re willing to accept right now. So I’m going to say this. And it really upsets them. It’s really infuriating. And yet they always come back and say, thank you.
I needed that. I wasn’t willing to accept that. And the way that you did that was so fabulous. It hurts like hell. It pisses us off. And yet those moments, as long as we’re still saying yes, and, and I’m going to choose into this, then we’ll see what happens and where it goes. And I’m really grateful for you, that Kenny was able to push your buttons.
Krystal Jakosky: Am I? You have no idea. He, he came in, I’ll go ahead. No, you’re good. No, no, no. Please. You had a question. I want to because I will ramble forever.
Kevin Pennell: No, I was, what I was going to say was actually to the audience and the fact that oftentimes those people who are so challenging have the biggest lessons. They have the biggest opportunity for shifting, for growth. If we step back, take a moment and ask, Okay, what am I supposed to learn? What am I being shown? How can I deal with this? Instead of shutting down and putting that wall there and a million locks and everything else to push that person out of our lives, maybe we step back and say, Okay, how can I learn and how can I grow and how can life be better because of this really frustrating moment that I am experiencing? So friction is good.
Krystal Jakosky: It is something, somebody ought to come up with a line like breathe in and breathe out.
Kevin Pennell: Right. Thank you.
So a little while back, I want to bring us back to this because I wanted to come back and you mentioned that you wanted to come back. The whole concept of you thought for sure that you had Native American blood in you, that you were somehow related to that. And then you go in with Kenny two feathers and you’re learning from him. And you said you wanted to return to this concept of the fact that you actually don’t have, and yet you were learning from.
So in some work that I had done on my own and thankfulness to others, for what it’s worth my background, degree is in theology. And I did a flip some years ago and I will not, again, I’m not going to put anybody down because they go to church because that is the level of spirituality. That’s the way you achieve your level of spirituality that you feel that you’re growing from and that you’re getting a lot of benefit from. And that’s fine. It’s just not who I am anymore. It was part of my process. I don’t regret any of that. But all that being said, I’m leading into something. And that is that I strongly believe in reincarnation Now, I believe in it so strongly that I can tell you that there were incidents in my life where dreams that used to come to me after I had made a shift and I had made a change that was needed in my life, Guess what happened to those dreams? They stopped because I made the change that was necessary. And I realized after I had had this one, I had one dream that was, it was to the point, it would actually become nightmarish and it would wake me up. And it was scary. I’m sure people have had these kind of dreams where you would have a dream where you either you want to punch somebody and for whatever reason, everything goes into slow motion and you can’t quite get your fist into it where you need to go stops
Yeah. Or you have the other situation, which was this one that I had a spear in my hand and I was native. I was a pueblo and I had my spear and we were being invaded and I knew that I had to do something and I just kept trying to move forward with this. And it’s, I’m going to kill you. I’m going to do this. And nothing will ever happen with that. I had a past life regression done by a colleague of mine and came to realize the reason why I had such a hard time with that is because that’s not what happened. Oh. I was a spiritual leader of that group, and I had taken the vow to be a peacemaker, and that meant that I didn’t raise arms against anybody.
And the truth came out that I watched my family get killed. Wow. And that was tough. And after I realized what was involved with that, I saw for the first time in that juncture, a real essence of what I was in that life. Not only had it been that, but I also found that there were some roots in the Kwa Nation. And because I was, I talked with somebody one time and we were just having a great time, just like you and I are having a great time right now. And we started singing some wonderful songs and some of the songs that just came from the heart just came from Spirit. I’m just going at it. And the lady that I was with at the time, she says she just held her hand up and she was black feet and Polish.
That’s a good combination. She said, You need to stop right there. And I said, Why? What? You know, what did I do? And I’m still, this is like three or four years into my, two or three years into my path on some of this indigenous people path. What did I do? Did I offend you? And she, No, have you been around K people? And I said, No, I’ve never been around Kwa people. Where are they? And she says, Well, you know, up Midwest. And I said, Okay. So what? She says, Well, you’re singing in the K language. I got nothing. And again, I did some more work. And I’m, I’m comfortable with that, that Kwa. And some people say, Oh, you’re just one of those frilly, fufu people that just believes in anything and everything.
But what I’ve got also down deep inside of me is a real sense. And it was brought into full light when I saw, and I heard from Kenny, but I heard about a story that was given down, I believe by the Hopi, and I can be wrong, but something about that there are so many souls who are out there from the 500 nations that occupied North America. There are not enough bodies for the souls that have crossed over. And so some of those souls went into the people of today, the white people, and those that have the hearts and the minds ready for this sort of thing. Okay, I can accept that or not, all I know is this. I’m going to move along with the way that time feels. I’m the most comfortable. And so, I will talk about, you need to be very wary of being too comfortable because you know, you can get so comfortable that you no longer grow. But comfort in this act, I would say not comfortable, but content with the concept that I’m confident that I’ve been in native in the past. And that’s why one of the reasons I gravitated back to this is because I see the connection between my true heritage of the Celtic people and the inherited or reincarnated heritage of my native side. So yeah, it’s beautiful. It’s powerful stuff.
I’m searching for the right words at the moment because there are a ton of thoughts and ideas going through my brain right now. And I want to say these words in the most respectful and honoring way that I can. We are drawn to different things. We are drawn to different ways of life. And it is all an opportunity to learn and grow. It is all an opportunity to find compassion and expansion with understanding a different culture, a different way of living, a different state of being. And this is, and I would like to mention that not by way of just Native American and indigenous pupils. I’m talking about people who live differently than us. Maybe it’s someone who chooses religion and the structure that that gives them over spirituality. Perhaps it’s someone who has a different societal belief, right? Whether you’re Republican or Democrat or all those things.
Perhaps it’s someone who is lgbtq plus versus someone who is not unaware of it. Somebody who is deaf and in that community and culture and somebody who is not and is trying to learn how to respect and honor the different cultures and ways of living around us. And I think that by learning about it, inviting that in from a very respectful and honoring space, we learn so much more. And just like you are the student, you may also become the teacher and help people recognize that you’re not out to get them and that you are more balanced and that things are okay and whatnot. I think there’s this huge opportunity for all of us to come together in this compassionate, gentle space. If you are drawn to the beliefs and the feelings and the teachings and the culture of indigenous people, I encourage you to dive in.
I encourage you to respectfully dip your toes and send out to the universe and say, Hey, can you send me a teacher and help me meet the people that I need to meet so that I can start walking on that path? Because the only way you will find that person is if you do open up. Kevin and I were talking about the concept right now. Kevin’s very much in this. Yes. And what else can I do? And if you say, yes, I would like that teacher, and what else can I learn? How many things shift?
You bet it does. Just be ready for the ride. I think when you are working with someone within the native community, as an outsider, I would say this, I felt truly honored when I was living out in the southwest living, living in Arizona. And I found the sweat lodge to be so beneficial for me as a person. And it really did a lot for my heart, my spirit, my soul, and what a wonderful group of people they were that were there. It was on the Pima Reservation. And if you’re familiar with Phoenix, that’s pretty much really close within the city limits of Phoenix. But they were Pima, there were Pima and there were Navajo. That was pretty much it. Those two people, excuse me, there was Apache, there were Apaches there too.
And the sweat lodges that I had been to up to that point were a big one for me was 10, 15 people. This sweat lodge alone was probably, I’m gonna guess it was, it was elliptical. So it was probably pretty close to somewhere between 16 and 20 feet long and probably a solid 12 to 14 feet wide, big sweat lodge. Wow. And I thought a big sweat lodge that we would have had a really heavy duty sweat lodge had 12 to 15 stones. No, we had somewhere between 48 and 52 stones in that sweat lodge. And everyone in there, you could just feel the spirit in there. And I faithfully went there for my own sake. I mean, because I needed that in my life at that time. I had drifted a little bit. I’m still on the path and still doing it, but I’m still being pulled into other stuff and we can maybe go into that later or go into another podcast. But we all will drift from time to time off of our given path. And sometimes it’s done for different reasons, but in this one, I felt really good that it gave me that grounding that I needed.
And literally out of the proverbial blue, the leader came to me and parenthetically the leader and his wife actually helped young men and women on the PMA reservation with substance abuse. And they used the sweat lodge as a vehicle to help them overcome substance abuse. So it was pretty powerful. Yeah. He came up to me after I’d been there for some months, he put his hand on my shoulder and he said, Can I speak with you for a minute brother? And I said, Sure, what’s up? He says, You know, we have another sweat lodge. I said, Yeah, I, you know, coming next Tuesday, Wednesday, whatever it was, he says, No, no, no. He says, We have a family swat lodge every Sunday and I’d like you to start attending.
Krystal Jakosky: Oh wow.
Kevin Pennelll: That blew me away.
Krystal Jakosky: Literally invited you into the family.
Kevin Pennell: Yeah. And no ceremony. It just was what it was. And I also had the opportunity, one of the Apaches in the group came up, put their hand on my shoulder one day and then said, we have a very special thing. And we’d like, and this is after I had been invited to go to the Sunday sweats, because it was at one of those Sunday sweats that he came to me. And let’s face it guys, I don’t look native
And he puts his hand on my shoulder and he says, Are you familiar with a very special Apache dance where a young woman is ushered into a young lady and is ushered into womanhood? And I said, Yeah, I’m a little familiar with that. He says, Well, we have a young lady who’s doing that. This, you know, whenever it is, he says, we’d be honored to have you. And this is the one where you would have the dancers, and the brain’s gone right now. Hopefully it’ll come back. Wink wink, nudge, nudge Krystal, maybe you can help me out here. But you have the special dolls that you can buy at gift shops and they’re the really cool looking dolls that you get. And they’re Hopi basically. Yeah, well the Apache have them too, just so you know. And I went to that dance and they had the bonafide ones. They didn’t have the tourist ones because you can go to either one of those dances in Arizona and this one you were stopped on the road when you were coming in saying, who invited you?
I told them and they said, Okay, you can come in.
Krystal Jakosky: Okay, fine. We’ll admit you. What I want to know, and I want my listeners to know, what is the purpose or the intention behind the sweat lodges?
Kevin Pennell: Good question. There’s a chapter in the book about that.
Sweat lodge. I attended the sweat lodge basically to– how do I start with this? Sweat lodge is an opportunity for us to bear ourselves to the universe and to cleanse ourselves from whatever is holding spirit back. Black Elk and his nephew, Frank FOLs Crow also had the same thing. And that is that with sweat lodges, you are given the opportunity to bury your soul and to go down deep inside and reveal to you what you need to change. Fools Crow talked about being a hollow bone and there’s a workshop that I’ve done before called Becoming a Hollow Bone. And interestingly enough, to me it’s also one of those central truths like love because the Dalai Lama talks about becoming, believe it or not, he uses the term becoming a hollow tube. But the hollow bone is just simply this.
That you get rid of the stuff that’s inside that bone to allow more spirit to come through that’s unobstructed. And to give the analogy, they give the example of a plumbing pipe that if it gets clogged, the water can’t get through and you have to unplug it. And so the Sweat lodge is one of the vehicles that can be used to help rid ourselves of the stuff that’s within our being, within our bones that will help spirit to come through better. That’s one of the parts. But in most cases it’s an opportunity to be cleansing and beautiful. That’s what’s done. And that’s another piece that I was taught if you want to have a sweat lodge. I was honored in being able to be taught how to do a sweat lodge and I’ve poured a few sweat lodges.
The way that I would do a sweat lodge was somebody would come up to me, and this is how Kenny taught me and others chimed in with the same thing, is that you come up to me, you give me tobacco, and you give me a reason why. And I’m not trying to be a jerk, but if somebody comes up to me and says, Oh, I want to have a sweat lodge because I want to know what it’s like. No, why do you want it? It’s like the same question, Do you know who you are?
If you give me a good reason or if you give that elder a good reason and tobacco, there’s your way. And typically what I did was somebody would give tobacco or somebody would give Kenny tobacco and he’d say, Give me a few days to talk with the spirits. And that’s what you do. And my thing was, he taught me if I wait three times to come back through. And the third time it affirms that. In fact, if the third time doesn’t come at a certain length of time, then it ain’t going to happen. It’s just not meant to be. It doesn’t mean that you can’t have a sweat, it just means that I’m not supposed to be the one to do it. Or maybe you’re not supposed to have one. So there’s no money exchanged, it’s just your gift of tobacco. That’s the way I was taught. And you typically break bread afterward too. There’s a lot more to it than that. Does that answer the question?
Krystal Jakosky: No, it’s a fantastic answer and I very much appreciate it because it literally brings everything back to intention and spirituality and being connected with source, being connected with the universe, being connected with spirit, whatever that phrase is that works for you. So Native Americans, indigenous people, some people are going to do sweat lodges, and that is how they connect with that spirit. And other people are going to go to organized religion. That is where they have that connection with that higher power that brings them the peace and joy that they need. It all works for everyone depending on where you’re at and what you are seeking and what fills your heart and gives you the answers that you need in that moment. And so I love the intention behind it. I love the purpose behind it. It’s I am seeking, or I would like to connect or I need this, and because I need that, I am going to seek for answers. I’m going to seek healing. I am going to find somebody who can help me move forward and be better in my life than I already am right now. So thank you for that answer. Thank you for sharing.
Kevin Pennell: Part of it is, the magic word that you used is something I used with students when I teach not only workshops, but when I teach in massage school and when I teach whatever, intention is key. Intention is critical. So it doesn’t matter what you’re doing, you need to look at the reason behind it. Yeah. And you need to really say, Am I doing this for the right reasons? What’s my intention? What am I really engulfing in this? What am I really putting into this? What kind of energy am I putting into this? Yeah. And if you’re working with someone, side note massage therapy is, is if you don’t have the intention when you’re talking with somebody, or excuse me, when you’re working with someone and you’re doing the massage with someone, you’re doing the body work with someone, any of the stuff that we’re talking about, even if you’re doing counseling or if you’re doing anything like that, and if your mind is not totally focused with good intention with that person, don’t think for a second that they won’t feel it.
You don’t have to say it. Words don’t have to express what’s really going on. And if we’re human, we’re going to do this, but if my brain is on, well, geez, I wish this interview would get done because I’ve got other things to do. If I let that intention come out in that, going back to the little three globes I had, and if your higher self picks up on that, guess what? You say, Okay, that’s good. See ya. And I never hear from you again. But it’s the side. The other side of that is if you’re a body worker and you are totally committed to this person and you’re not thinking about your rent, you’re not thinking about, Oh geez, this is this person again. And you’re not thinking about, Oh, what am I going to do this weekend?
And if you’re not, you know, all the little thought monkeys coming in and if you’re not sidetracked by all that, guess what? They know it. They know when you are connected to them. And then the magic really happens because they say, Wow, I don’t know what this is that you’ve just done with me as far as a massage is concerned, or whatever the case may be, but it’s the most fantastic, most beautiful, most awesome experience. And I will come back and you say, Okay, great. And I will, It’s just magical when you do that because people want that. I was talking earlier today with someone and they said, You know what people are starving for right now. I mean, we’re doing this on a podcast, we’re doing this on YouTube, but they really miss being together. Actually touching each other. And it’s that communication that is so important. But anyway, ramble on intention next.
Krystal Jakosky: No, you’re good. I’ve also noticed for me personally, I have done ti massage, meaning I am a trained ti massage therapist. And so I have often found that when I am in it, and this goes for, I mean, you brought out massage therapy, but I think that this goes for almost any action that we’re doing. If you focus on the action that you’re doing and you are really in it, I am cutting these vegetables and I’m getting the same size. I’m sanding wood, I’m chopping wood, I’m working on a client. If you focus on that and let everything else go, it actually becomes a meditation. One of my favorite things was to be working and losing my mind in what I was doing and having that intentionality and the fluidity because I was just present in that moment. And that presence is what brought me peace, is what brought me more energy to continue with the rest of my day. And so intention, the presence and things are completely different. So Kevin, what are you doing now?
Kevin Pennell: I’m talking with you. You ask, I mean.
Krystal Jakosky: Like these days, I mean you and I could shop talk forever, you guys, I’m telling you Kevin and I could do a year’s worth of podcast and probably not touch on the same subject twice. And that’s fantastic to find such a gift like that. So I sincerely thank you for having me on your A Better Life podcast. And then I really thank you for being here because I really wanted to talk about the native way of life and their love for the earth and their connection to the world around us, because I think it is so absolutely beautiful. I feel that draw and it is one of those things that speaks peace and joy to my heart with all of the other things that we have talked about, but not necessarily on this podcast. What else are you into these days? Like what else are you doing in life?
Kevin Pennell: Well, I do have to share one other little thought with Native American stuff. It just came to me and I would just want to honor that, that if you are a person listening to this, watching this, and if you’re being drawn in that direction, be you white or be you native. And if you are drawn in that direction and you start to seek out someone, know this, that eventually, if you’re doing it for the right reasons, with the right intentions, it goes back to the old saying, when the student is ready, the teacher will appear. But at the same token, when you find that teacher or where you find that person, you don’t just run right out and give them tobacco right on the spot. No, just take your time, go slow. Take it to somebody who has been there. Oh dear. You know, I want everything and I want it right now. Because that’s the way you do stuff, right? No, take your time. Be patient would be one key word. Another key word to keep in mind is love, trust, and thankfulness.
Honor sharing, caring, giving, loving. That’s the ones that I’m trying to run in my brain. But that’s what we would say all the time to love, to share, to care, to give. We’re coming up on a season called, of course, Thanksgiving. And I have a podcast coming up that’s going to be on the Thanksgiving address. And if you have an opportunity to look up on Google or listen to the podcast, it doesn’t matter to me. It really doesn’t. What’s most important to me is that you look and find the Thanksgiving address. It was as it was delivered by the Iroquois people. Because it’s beautiful. When I did it the other day, I got emotional. It just really hit my heart when I would listen to my really good friend Mike Douglas giving that information to me. He was the main preventative skill school.
Hope you don’t mind my sharing that. But, thankfulness is so important to be thankful for the air that we breathe. Be thankful for the life that we have. Be thankful that we are old because we could have died young. Be thankful for the simple little things. Be thankful for the person in your life. Be thankful for the people in your life. So what am I doing now? Well, I am enjoying doing podcasts. You’re talking about being focused on stuff. People really, my partner can’t believe it about how I can sit down with my audition software and I can spend hours editing. You can share that information with Avery. I can just go away. I mean, hours will go by and I’m just sitting here going on.
Yeah. But I’m such a big picture person and yet at the same time I can be very detail oriented when I need to be. In Native traditions sometimes that’s referred to as mouse medicine. But anyway, so I do my podcast, I do some instruction, I do some workshops. I am a massage therapist who sees people here in Asheville, North Carolina, Wink, wink, nudge, nudge, I have people ask, even if you’re a massage therapist and your listener watching this, and some people will ask me, Well, how many massages do you do a day? And I typically am going to do two to four, and that’s my happy place. Yeah. Could I do six? Yeah, I could, but I wouldn’t last. I’ve been doing body work of some level or another for about 22 years, and it can be done.
So I do the massage, I do podcasting. I walk in nature. I love to get out and about. I just like being when I can. Through our other conversations, Krystal knows that we’re into cars a little bit. And I do have another podcast called the Driving Experience. I’m really into BMWs, and racing. I used to race, but I don’t race anymore. Just because, you know, I’m not going to say I won’t because I don’t know, but I just like to live an active life. We are currently living in a senior community while we wait for our house to be built. And we tried this for a while and, Krystal, we can’t do it. And I’m not putting anything down, but I, I cannot be that old person.
Just can’t do that. Nope. Just can’t. You’re not ready. No. And, I don’t know that I ever will be. There was a teacher who taught, she was actually responsible forTrigger Point Therapy, and her name was Janet Trave. And Janet continued her work as a massage therapist and, and doctor up until about three to four months before she died at the ripe old age of 96. Oh, wow. I intend to beat her record. So I gotta go good. But just stay active. And if you’re older and if you’re a senior and you feel like, Oh man, I just know, just stop doing what you’re doing and go out for a walk in the woods, bathe in the woods.
And no, don’t take a tub with you for crying out loud. I’m talking about being one with the forest. But, you know, be active. Get around young people and, and just be and enjoy life because that’s what we’re here for. We’re here to learn. We’re here to be filled with joy. We’re here for contentment. And I mean, if you look at the Dalai Lama that still does live things on occasion, and I saw something the other day and I realized he’s pushing 90 years old. And you look at him and he’s still smiling and he’s still going around and he’s still happy and he’s not dejected, he’s not down. So yeah, let us see. What else do I do?
I build things. I stay active and I let my brain stay active.
Krystal Jakosky: In all of that activity, in all of the things that you’re doing and loving and enjoying, what is your favorite or most unique?
Kevin Pennell: Geez.
Krystal Jakosky: Activity for self care.
Kevin Pennell: Oh, good one. Yay. Wow.
Krystal Jakosky: I don’t know what you thought I was going to ask.
Kevin Pennell: You know, I didn’t. What’s your favorite one? Oh God. No.
Krystal Jakosky: No. What’s your favorite, what’s your favorite way to take care of yourself and rebuild, regenerate? Because you’re doing a lot. You’re out and you’re functioning. What do you do for you?
Kevin Pennell: I will answer this with a line that I’ve used for years. It’s four words, go with the flow. What I mean by that is, today I missed my run and I missed my walk. Because I’m doing two podcasts. One I did, and one I’m being done. What was that?
So I could get all upset about that or I could look at this as an opportunity for me. Because that’s what this has been. Yeah. You know, I’m sharing with Krystal and this is me time, this is what I want to do. But the rest of that part is for self care, and I’ve taught, and I have a workshop that I do with this, but self care is one of the biggest things for self care is awareness.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah.
Kevin Pennell: You know what’s missing? So I might fill that void with going out for a walk in the woods. I might fill that void with doing some Tai Chi and Chiang. I might start to do the ch style 48 and I might get through half of it and start saying, Oh, I’m good with this. Yeah. And you know, I want to go with the flow to what generates within me, the sense of being me and no one else. And if you look at that book that I wrote, one of the things that came up in that book was, I am a chameleon. True, true story. Or I have been where, because of my background, and this will really spin us off and I’m not gonna go there but because of the way I was brought up a long time in a residence or a place or a community was two years when I was growing up, two years mostly it was like 18 months on average.
Wow. And we moved and it was no regrets, not upset, no problems. But it’s funny because what that taught me to do is how to connect with people like that. And I could make a connection. I could get that. But in order to do that, I had to be like them. Listen to that. I had to be like them, not like me, like them. Why? Because in the way that I thought, it made me more comfortable around them because I’m like them. But then is when I really got the message that Kenny was trying to ask me years and years and years before, Kevin, who do you think you are? Who are you? And I went, Wow. And that’s when the change really happened. And people say, Geez, would you do that again? I said, I would try to avoid it like the bubonic plague, but I don’t regret a bit of it because I had to go through that. I had to do that change. So back the to question, what do you do for self care? I listen to the still small voice in my heart. When I used to, when I’ve signed off on my books before, I would say something to the effect of, let your heart and spirit guide you because they’ll never let you down.
Let your heart and your spirit guide you because they will never let you down your heart, your spirit, not the other persons, but listen to your heart within and go with that. And once you get that message, you can maybe find that what you want to do today for self-care is meditate. I do that. I can meditate for a few minutes or I can meditate for two hours. I’ve done both. I can go down that road and we’re not going to go there, but you know, meditate, Tai chi, Chiang Reiki. I can get lost doing massages. That can be, believe it or not, be my self care, giving a massage. And of course receiving a massage because that is also self care. But you’ve got to take care of yourself. If you don’t take care of yourself, no one else is going to.
Krystal Jakosky: You are, you are echoing so many things that I already say and I absolutely love it. It’s like these gigantic exclamation points coming down saying hello. Hey guys, remember self care is the conscious and intentional act of taking care of your own needs. And it could change from day to day. It does not matter. What matters is that you are letting your heart and your spirit be your guide because they’re not going to be false to you.
I mean it’s like bam boo. Yeah. Bring it on. Meditation, you know, meditation is the moment that you tune out the world and tune into yourself. You tune into the breathing, you tune into the moment and you let everything else go.
Kevin Pennell: I think one of the things you should do with part of the self care is change it up. Don’t try to do the same thing every day. Because if you do the same thing every day, it becomes a habit. And before you know it, a habit becomes a rut and you are only different, you know, do you know the only difference between the rut and a grave? Both ends are knocked out. That’s the only difference when a rut and a grave is where you haver both ends knocked out.
Krystal Jakosky: Wow. Okay guys, let’s stay out of the ruts. I have one more question for you Kevin. You’ve already given us a really good one. So who are you is a great journaling question. I love to leave all of my listeners with a journaling prompt or a question that they can think about and really answer. And who you are is amazing. Is there another one that you can think of that you would love to encourage people to explore?
Kevin Pennell: What have you done for self care for yourself today?
Krystal Jakosky: Okay. Just today.
Kevin Pennell: For the whole week?
Krystal Jakosky: It doesn’t have to be huge. It’s one little thing today.
Kevin Pennell: What have you done for yourself today?
Krystal Jakosky: I have, I have loved having you here. I have loved chit chatting with you. I really hope that everybody out there listening has enjoyed listening to us as well, and that you’ve been inspired and that you are leaving this session of this podcast uplifted and smiling. I am. I love Kevin. I love just the way that it’s so free and easy to talk with you. How do people find you and are there any last tidbits of wisdom or words of knowledge that you would like to share with people?
Kevin Pennell: So I would say first you can contact me through my website, which is toward better life.com. If you want to reach out to me, just write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am available to do consultations and stuff like that from time to time. I haven’t mentioned that, but I do, I have done that and I will be more than happy to do it. so that’s the two easiest ways to do it. You know, if I go into phone numbers and stuff. When we get acquainted, you can have my phone number and we can text. That’s fine. Yeah.The easiest thing is toward better life.com and Kevin toward better life.com. And that’s an email and the website. That’s the easiest way to do this. And if you’re in the western North Carolina area and you’re looking for a massage, you can still do the same thing. I’ll just direct you to who to contact to get a massage. I think I would leave people just with those same simple words that if I can get them again in my head properly, and that is listen to your heart and spirit because they won’t let you down.
Krystal Jakosky: Amen. Oh, thank you so much for being here today. Thank you for sharing with me and starting my day off so beautifully. So Right. Thank you.
Kevin Pennell: Thank you. Pleasure’s all mine. We’ll do this again.
I hope this moment of self care and healing brought you some hope and peace. I’m Krystal Jacosky on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube. And I hope you check us out and follow along for more content coming soon. I look forward to being with you again here on Breathe in. Breathe out. Until next time, take care.
Think meditation is hard? Do me a favor, take a slow deep breath in and now breathe out. Congratulations, you just meditated. Hi, I’m Krystal Jakosky, and this is Breathe In, Breathe Out: a Weekly Mindfulness and Meditation podcast for anyone ready to own their own shit and find a little peace while doing it.
Krystal Jakosky: Hello and welcome back to Breathe In, Breathe Out. I’m Krystal Jakosky. And as always, I am absolutely thrilled that you chose this moment today and that you are here with me, just taking a time out and breathing in what life has to offer you in this moment. Today I get to speak with Raychel Perman. She is a certified life and leadership coach, speaker, bestselling author, podcast co-host, and co-founder of Rayma Team. She shares her story of overcoming trauma and living with a mental health challenge and chronic pain to inspire others that are broken. This does not disqualify you from living and leading. Well, it actually prepares you, so hello and welcome. How are you today, Raychel?
Raychel Perman: I’m great. Thanks for having me. I’m doing well. I was telling you that we’re in day four of a blizzard here in the Midwest. And so I’m ready to get my own shovel and get myself out of here because our roads haven’t gotten plowed yet and I’m becoming a desperate woman. I just have to get out of this house. But other than that, I’m doing great.
Krystal Jakosky: Right. Oh, the contrast in our world, I’m enjoying 60-degree weather. So I just want to send that heat up to you and have it melt everything so that you can get out and enjoy a little bit more than what you’re able to right now. Oh my gosh. So Raychel, tell me a little bit about yourself and your past and what brought you to be a leadership coach and just you.
Raychel Perman: Okay. If you ask my friends, they always tell you that I am funny and wise, but I also tell it like it is, and I am Midwest born and raised. I make my home in North Dakota with my husband and three great kids. We do have two fur babies who are really enjoying the snow. We are a blended family, so sometimes our house is really full, and then sometimes it’s just me and my husband and the dogs, and I am obsessed with plants. So I’m really excited for the snow to leave because I was getting ready to plant. I have an obsession with the British Royal family and cute coffee mugs and I like to rock the boat. And so yes, I am an Amazon bestselling author, public speaker podcast, and host. I have a lot of different titles that I use and the entrepreneur bug actually hit me when I was 19.
I graduated in 2012 from college and decided I didn’t want to stay in the beauty industry forever. So I went back to school and that’s when I got into more of the traditional side of counseling. While I was getting my counseling degree, the school I was going to combine with one of the first coaching certification programs. So while I was getting my degree, I was also able to take classes at the same time to get my coaching certification, which I thought was great. So that’s kind of where the career shifted. But honestly, I think while I was in the beauty industry and working in spas, there’s something about getting somebody in a dark room on a table and its environment relaxed and they start talking to you and they start sharing their story. I think I really started practicing my counseling skills all the way back then.
So when I graduated, I thought I was going to go more to the traditional route and get my master’s degree. At the time I was a board-certified biblical counselor in 2013 and I was helping a local church do counseling, but it was kind of more of a liaison between the staff and the pastor. Pastors don’t get a ton of counseling training. So I was able to provide that. It was there that my best friend and I decided that we wanted to break out and do our own thing. She was a health coach at the time and I was really enjoying the coaching side as I started to transition into that even back then. So in 2014 my best friend and I co-founded our first company together, it was called Big Blue Couch Coaching. Then in 2019, we rebranded to Rayma Team so that we could position ourselves a little bit better in the lead leadership coaching space instead of the life and faith only coaching space. That’s kind of how I got here. That’s how I got multiple titles. We started the podcast show that we actually started as a local radio show. That’s how that one started and now that’s how I got most of my titles. So that brings me to today.
Krystal Jakosky: So a woman of many trades, right? But it’s all those life experiences that bring us here. And, you know, we keep learning and growing. I think that all of those things that we’ve learned in the past we keep in our bucket and we’re going to use that tool. And some of them we don’t need. Here’s a new one and it’s shiny and it’s exciting. And we keep growing because we love. I’m like you. I love learning. I love growing. I’m a sponge and I take it all in and then people just magically say, Hey, can you help me out with this? And yeah, sure. I gotcha. How about we work on this, let’s work on that. And, I’m trained in massage therapy as well as Thai massage. There is this thing where people start to relax and they’re on your table or they’re on your mat. And they’re just like, Ugh, that spot that you just released also released a whole bunch of emotion that they had been holding in about whatever this is over there. And they just have to talk about it to continue and complete that release. You do become a sort of sounding board and unintentionally a counselor. You don’t try to counsel them at that moment.
Raychel Perman: It definitely happens, and I think in industries like that, but they’re a hairstylist or it’s somebody that’s working in the spa industry, you become a trusted source for people. As I said, it was just kind of a training ground for what I did here at first, it used to be a funny joke that I was a beauty school dropout. Because I stopped cosmetology. That’s what I did first. And I realized that I did not like that. I have a depth perception problem with my eyes and you can imagine how well that goes with cutting hair. I didn’t really know that until I got there and everything that looked straight was not. So I would not have worked out well as a hairstylist.
At first, it used to feel like such a huge failure because you had this one career and then you completely pivoted. But I think that’s definitely one of the things in my past or my career past that has helped me to this day. There are other things that haven’t. but that was really a training ground for me to learn how to communicate with people how to build that trust how to make people comfortable. People get really nervous when they come in the first time to a spa or to a coach and that’s just kind of helping, it helped me a lot. With my people skills, definitely with selling all of that. So I’m proud of it now.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. It’s creating you. You learned how to create that safe space for people to just come in and be able to do whatever work they needed to do. So congratulations and good job and I’m really, yeah. Woo, woo. Hats off to you. So you’ve been through a lot of transitions in life from just every different change to every different, new learning experience. So do you have tips on like how to transition? Have you got a little, you just know that this is a really fabulous way for people to recognize transition and what they’re going through.
Raychel Perman: The first thing I always tell people when we talk about transition, and people can use a lot of different words for transitions in their life and it could be a good transition like starting a new job, maybe new to a new city, a baby is born, you’re getting married or it can be a rough transition, like a divorce or you lost a job or the last few years, there’s just a lot of loss that has nothing to do with death necessarily, but just change in general. One of the things that I have most definitely learned, and the first thing that I talk about when people ask me, is that we really do have to remember that we have choices. First of all, when this starts happening and the most important choice is to go through the process.
We can go through it kicking and screaming. We can go through it with eyes that are willing to see the beauty in change and in transition. But I think that first choice really determines how this season of your life is going to play out. I know there are definitely times where change happens or transitions happen that are negative or trauma-inducing or anything like that. Like you didn’t ask for this, you don’t want to go through it, and deciding to go through it is the last thing you want to do, but it really is a powerful choice. It puts the power back in the driver’s seat where you should be. And even just that one choice of knowing, Hey, I get to choose how I’m going to see this, how I’m going to behave, what my thoughts are going to be like, what my attitude is going to be like.
That gives a lot of power, especially when there’s so much unknown when we’re going through a transition. So that’s the first thing I would say is to be willing to go through the transition as graciously as you can. And that does not mean you don’t get to kick and scream a little while you certainly get to be upset. When one of those transitions is hard, there’s going be grief with that. There’s grief with that. So the choice, I think, is the most important thing, knowing you have it and then being willing to make it so that you can actually learn what you need to, as you go through that transition.
Krystal Jakosky: Nice. I absolutely love that. I love the idea that it’s almost like setting an intention for that transition. It’s saying, okay, I’m here. This is going to happen. Do I want to be drug kicking and screaming and fighting the whole way? Or do I want to say, okay, how is this going to benefit me? How can I work through it? How can I be a little bit more gracious as I do it? And you’re right. I absolutely experience that kicking and screaming experience, that upset and frustration because if you don’t guys, it’s just going to grow and be even more frustrating.
Raychel Perman: It’s so true. Yeah. Yep.
Krystal Jakosky: Well, I love that. So did you do that in the beginning when you were going through all these transitions or did you have to learn that?
Raychel Perman: I grew up with parents that moved a lot. I don’t even remember what the final number was, but at one point I counted, I think I was 25 or 26 right before my first daughter was born and I had moved 30 times in my lifetime. So I think in some ways I was born into this message of learning how to give this message, whether I wanted it or not on how to transition during change, it is actually very bizarre for me to not be moving and changing. That’s actually something I’ve had to work on with the therapist, because it is normal and was hard for me, like learning how to stay in one spot, learning how to not move, just because I don’t like this house anymore. It was crazy.
How many mindsets were brought into my life that was negative and unhealthy? So I think in some ways I was definitely groomed, you could maybe say into being able to change a lot, it does help that certain things you don’t get attached to and you kind of expect change to come when it’s happened a lot in your life compared to somebody that’s maybe an adult by the time they have a big transition in their life. But like I said, in other ways, I think it was kind of forced upon me and I never really knew life without change. It created a lot of negativity in my own brain as well. And I think I did a lot of kicking and screaming. Especially when I became an adult and it felt like I had no choices or I was told this is what we were doing or where we were going or the change that was happening.
I think the first time that I actually took that power back and decided that you know what this is what’s going to happen. I’m going to walk through it this time with some grace and figure out what I need to do is actually when I filed for divorce in 2017. Up until that point, every change in my life, every transition in my life had kind of been dictated by him and the alcoholism that he dealt with. So I think for me, that’s kind of where that started to switch from change is being forced upon me to change can be a beautiful thing if I am willing to walk through it, if I am willing to look at it differently, if I’m willing to take the hard along with the good and that that’s. I think that is where it really started to switch in my brain. I had to walk it out though, for sure.
Krystal Jakosky: Very similar stories actually, because I moved a lot when I was a kid as well. So I learned very early about the impermanence of absolutely everything, which meant that you just kind of were forced to go with the flow. You were forced to accept the next thing. And it wasn’t until I was married and had two kids and then that gypsy aspect of life I’ve got to move. I hate this place. I’ve got to move. It was three years of being in one spot and then I thought I can’t do this anymore. I have to move. I recognized it at that point and I was like, wait a minute. That’s from my childhood from moving so often back then. And I don’t have to bring that into my life now. Crazy transitions. And yet it also taught me that you don’t cling to anything at all. As you said, you don’t get really attached. So I often just didn’t expect anything exciting to happen or follow through because there was never any guarantee that it was going to happen.
Raychel Perman: As you said gypsy life sucks. I’ve never thought about it that way, but it totally was. And like the idea of putting roots down and all of that was so foreign to me and my second husband, like my husband right now, he lived in two houses his entire lifetime. Moving in together was his third move. It’s just such an opposite way of living from the gypsy lifestyle that you and I grew up in. I can almost go back to where I grew up. I don’t even know which house to tell you I grew up in. I kind of have a town I’ve narrowed it down to, I grew up in the Midwest.
The easiest way to explain it is I grew up in the Midwest. We were all over, but Midwest has been home. So yeah, I get that. It’s a lot when it’s just forced upon you first because you don’t have choices as a kid. And then noticing when that mindset starts coming in and you’re like just bored. I don’t have to move. I don’t actually have to pick up and move every two years or every year or anything like that. This is okay. You can stay in one house and build a home and create expectations. That was weird.
Even planting grass. All of it was just such a big thing for me. When I filed for a divorce, I moved out of the house that my first husband and I had built with our kids and moved into an apartment. I thought I was never coming back. About one year after moving into the apartment, this house would not sell. It would not sell for anything. We had so many people going through it. We had neighbors’ houses but selling this house would not sell. What is going on? I am a person of faith. And I know that it was God who was talking to me audibly. And he was saying, I want you to offer some money to your ex-husband to buy him out of the house.
It was like such a low amount. He said I want you to move back. I told him I’m not moving back. That’s a house where a lot of bad things happened. I can’t live there. I slept on it and I heard it again. I’m saying, okay, but I offered the deal. And I said, here’s what I can give you. What do you think? And he said, sure, I’ll take it. So I bought the house back kicking and screaming. This was one of those transitions where I didn’t want to live in this house. It’s been four years now. I’ve lived in this house longer than I’ve lived anywhere in my life because it was three years before the divorce that we built the house.
So I’ve never lived anywhere this long. And knowing when those trauma responses come up I want to move. Right now it comes to I want to rearrange the furniture. That’s how I’ve channeled it. I’ve started planting things outside, getting outside, and putting things in the yard feels permanent to me, even though I know it’s not, but perennials. They feel permanent. That’s part of my healing process, putting actual legit roots down in the ground. They’re like, it’s okay. You can stay here and grow where you’re planted here. It’s definitely a learning process.
Krystal Jakosky: I love the absolute literal symbolism that you have thereof, I am intentionally putting roots down. I am intentionally saying, no, no, no, no. Here’s a flower. Here’s a plant that is going to come back every single year. And I am going to be here to see it. It’s that conscious awareness. It’s that intention saying No, no, no. I see it. I’m going to work with it. I’m going to move forward. I call Colorado home because I have lived in Colorado for 22 years now, but I’ve lived in four different homes since moving to Colorado. So I’m here at this one and I keep saying, I am going to die here. This is it. I’m not moving again. I’m absolutely done. So I’m like you, I’ve been planting and I’ve been building and I’ve been creating in this space and making it feel even more like home. This is it I’m done. This is my happy place. I’m going to create something where I’m excited to be here for much longer and thrive. Right?
Raychel Perman: Yep. I was shocked. It happens slowly. I don’t think it happens overnight. With these kinds of transitions where all of a sudden the home did kind of go from the house that I was going to raise the kids in because that’s what they needed. I can’t pinpoint when that happened, but it definitely did. And it definitely created a different atmosphere in the home. It created. There were friends and family that have come into the house. It’s just so different. It just feels different. There’s nothing really different. The paint is different. There’s some new furniture, but there was no major change. We didn’t tear down any walls or anything like that. It really is the same house.
And I’m proud of that transition. I think of the hardest ones I’ve ever gone through, but I think that’s one that I’m most proud of too. The one where it is kind of kicking and screaming. There was a lot of grief coming back here and I had to deal with it. There is that saying of you can’t heal in the same place that you were hurt. I could not wrap my brain around the idea that I could process and heal, and my kids could heal in this same place where a lot of hurt happened. I think it’s just been a miracle to watch it actually play out because I was convinced that this was not what was good for the kids. I was not sure that this was going to be what was good and best for me. It really has turned into my safe space instead of the place I always wanted to leave.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. I really commend you for that because I think, and I would hope I could be absolutely wrong, but my impression would be that healing in that space that caused so much turmoil and upset means that you’re even stronger and more grounded and more rooted because you faced it head-on. You faced it in that spot. Getting out of it sometimes can be like running away. Not always, absolutely not always. Sometimes it can be like running away and saying, I’m not going to do that. And other times choosing to stand in that and choosing to heal and face it is inspirational. I would guess that it makes you stronger, that healing, and more solid in your growth. So I commend you for choosing to follow that action.
Raychel Perman: I read “Eat, Pray, Love” about that time. It was so old already by then, by Elizabeth Gilbert. I joked that I was doing eat pray, love Midwest edition, where you don’t get to live. Like you don’t get to go to Italy and Bali and find yourself for a year. I was in a dumpy apartment trying to make ends meet, putting groceries on credit cards, and then moving back to the place that I never wanted to be in again. I thought this was “Eat, Pray, Love.”
Krystal Jakosky: Exactly. But the mosquitoes still exist here and they eat you alive. Here you go.
Raychel Perman: Always be that glamorous. I think that year away in the apartment was actually really a good transition for both me and the kids at the time, just to get some healing outside of the space. It’s definitely been the one that I was kicking and screaming the most. I think when it came to the actual divorce, I was ready. I had been ready. It was time, it was way past time for us to call an end to that situation. For him to go could help all of these things. So that it is easier to move back into the house. That was much more difficult than actually deciding to file for the divorce.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. Wow. Hats off to you.
Raychel Perman: I don’t recommend it for everybody. It’s just, that’s what happened with me.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. So you’ve got stress management. You’ve been just dealing with life. You’ve been through all of these ridiculous transitions. Ridiculous is the wrong word. I totally apologize. It’s ridiculous in the bigness of them.
Raychel Perman: The amount is ridiculous.
Krystal Jakosky: Some by choice and some not by choice and let’s face it. Most of them were by choice. Most of all of our transitions are by choice in one way or another, even a no choice is a choice. You have developed along with your partner. We talked about your podcast that you started as a radio show, but the two of you, was it the two of you that started this Art of the P.A.U.S.E.?
Raychel Perman: Yes. So it actually was something that my best friend Mandy was born with, cystic fibrosis. So when we started the company, my health journey to why I have chronic pain and all that I hadn’t even started then. So Art of the P.A.U.S.E. really came out of her learning how to, um, you know, make sure that she had the energy that she needed to actually live the life that she wanted. It was just a way that she developed. Then we started sharing with our clients and over the last decade have just honed it down into this really good stress management tool that we’ve brought into schools, we’ve brought it into companies. We use it, of course, one on one with our own clients. What we really noticed is that it was a way for people that had invisible illnesses or chronic diseases or things that you don’t look like you’re sick on the outside and you’re still well enough to actually do things: work and all of that kind of thing.
How do you do that? Like, how do you make sure that when there are seasons of sickness or seasons where health needs to be the priority, how do you not let all the other things fall? What happens if they do? It really started as her leaning into this process of growing and, building her dreams while managing this illness. Then I started to have some more health challenges show up. Of course, during a lot of this transition, especially in the last 10 years, it’s become a lifestyle more than anything. It’s the Art of the P.A.U.S.E. is a way to really manage stress because there’s no way we can get rid of it. There are stressors literally every single day, big stressors and little ones. Just pretending like it’s not there is not good.
It was one of the things that we definitely saw clients do quite a bit. They were starting to get burned out. They were starting to have health challenges. They were starting to have all kinds of things, and this was way before the pandemic even started. Since all of that, it’s become one of the capstone trainings that we do. Lifestyle for Mandy and me now. It’s definitely one that I love to share with clients and speaking on stage and anything else where I can share it.
Krystal Jakosky: So do you want to share what exactly that is with us?
Raychel Perman: Our P.A.U.S.E. is actually the P.A.U.S.E. an acronym. As I said, it really is a stress management tool and it’s a lifetime tool. So it’s not a one-time thing. There’s deep breathing and meditation and all of that kind of great stuff for when you’re feeling very stressed at the moment. So the P stands for pay attention to your emotions. One of the things that I have really noticed over the years, not only with myself, but with my clients is that women have a really hard time knowing what emotions they’re feeling and, we could buddy trail to a whole different topic of why that is based on society, based on what we’ve been told from our families of origin. Based on this idea we always have to be nice and sweet and calm and all of these adjectives don’t always describe us all the time.
We don’t know what to do with feeling angry. We don’t know what to do with feeling frustrated or we don’t even know what stress feels like in our own bodies because it’s different for everyone. So that P and it’s in order on purpose. So it’s an acronym, but it is in order because learning how to pay attention to your own emotions, knowing what kind of emotions are going to trigger a spiral into who knows what even sometimes paying attention to whether are you upset because you have literally not eaten for eight hours. And that piece alone, that empowering piece of teaching people how to pay attention to their emotions first has been super life-giving for me. It’s something I totally have to work on. I think when you’ve gone through trauma, you don’t know what your emotions are like. You know you’re feeling something, but you’re not sure what it is.
It’s hard to even put a name to it. That’s the first step, paying attention to your emotions is how you’re going to know that your body is feeling stressed before it needs to be dealt with. You do then have the health problems or all the things that we see from all the studies. How stress affects our heart and our brain. It affects literally everything. So learning how to see it and feel it and what it sounds like in our own bodies, whether sweaty palms or you get shaky or all kinds of things, heart palpitations. What does it feel like before your body goes into overdrive of stress?
Krystal Jakosky: I’m here with bated breath because paying attention is absolutely something that I talk to people about all the time. The way that you are able to manage anything that you have going on is that you are paying attention, that you recognize that you’re checking in. I talk about the four bodies, spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional. If you check in with all of those and say, Hey, where am I at really? What do I need? How do I fix that? Paying it all starts with you because nobody else knows what you’re going through, especially when we are trained to hide our emotions. So, absolutely.
Raychel Perman: We get so good at it. And you know, one of the things that we definitely try to make stress feel like is that you’re not alone. So we use a lot of things from, there’s actually an American Institute of stress. We’re so stressed that there’s an American Institute that just studies stress and the top four things that people will feel like the physical symptoms are fatigue headache, upset stomach, and muscle tension. Those are going to be the four things that are most common for people to feel. Other things can be teeth grinding. Sometimes they can be a change in appetite. Then psychologically, it’s that irritability. 50% of the people that they’ve studied for however long that they’ve had this Institute, irritability and anger are the number one psychological symptoms of stress and too much stress in your body. So we have to deal with it.
Krystal Jakosky: I know, I know. I think sometimes when I’m too stressed, I start to get foggy. I can’t remember stuff. Then I know I need to take a break so that I can refocus because there’s a problem here.
Raychel Perman: Which leads beautifully into a time to rest. One of the things that Mandy and I have taught our clients is the importance of a rest day. Now, most people think a rest day is going to be sleeping all day. don’t have time to nap all day. What we’ve learned over the last decade is rest can look like sleep, but it can also look like having fun. It can look like filling up your tank in any way that you can. So some people don’t sleep, but some people could use a nap once in a while, or we challenge our clients to take a 24-hour rest day, every single week.
It sounds impossible. And most of them don’t like to do it. There have been seasons where I can do, then there’s been seasons where I can rest two to three hours. So it’s more about the importance of blocking out time to rest when you’re not working on your business. You’re not working on the home. You are simply just being. You’re either enjoying an activity, not like being outside in the garden or planting a flat, (that can sometimes count as rest) if it’s filling for you if you love to do it. So it’s definitely something that is unique for every person, but sleep is so important. If you are seeing those signs of stress, sleep is one of the best ways because it’s the time when the body is going to relax and repair itself and do some of the work it needs to do.
It can only do when you’re sleeping. I’m a huge fan of naps. That is literally how I have survived. When I started having chronic pain, when I started having more of the symptoms show up for some of the mental health stuff, when I got diagnosed with PTSD and depression, sleep has been one of my favorite coping skills and I don’t sleep the day away. That is not healthy. When you have depression, that’s a sign that you probably should talk to a doctor, but taking a nap has been really important. And it is one of the things that we teach. So allow time to rest.
Krystal Jakosky: I have a t-shirt that says a nap team captain.
Raychel Perman: I love it.
Krystal Jakosky: I absolutely love naps. I think they’re beyond fantastic. And with my work colleagues, I will literally say can you have a meeting in five minutes? And I say, no, I need 15 because I need a nap and then I can go do that. So I absolutely love naps and the ironic thing is that the length of my nap lets me know how much I’ve been pushing.
Raychel Perman: Woo, that’s good.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. Normally my naps are 10 to 15 minutes and then I wake up and I am just ready to go, go, go. Totally rejuvenated and able to function. If my nap is 20, 30, 40 minutes long, I know that I’ve been pushing too hard and I need to do a little bit of extra self-care so that I can reboot because keeping that up is just going to make my tank and it’s not going to serve anybody at all.
Raychel Perman: That’s such a great point. I love that. Yeah.
Krystal Jakosky: And I love to allow time to rest. I tell all of my people, whether it be my podcast listeners or the people who are following me elsewhere, like Instagram and whatnot, that self-care is what brings you joy. It doesn’t mean you have to rest. It doesn’t mean you have to sleep. It’s what brings you joy. What brings you absolutely 100% present at this moment. And a lot of people don’t even know what that is, to begin with. They don’t know, I don’t do anything. I say that’s bullshit. No, no, no, no. I want you to go home and I want you to make a list of all the things that you really enjoy. It might be standing wood, it might be chopping vegetables. It might be just walking barefoot in the grass, whatever it is that works for you. Forget everybody else’s judgment. If it works for you and makes you happy, let’s start putting an intention behind that, and then it’s going to be rest. Then it’s going to be healing and rejuvenating. You’re going to feel absolutely fantastic. So first off recognize that there’s an issue. Second off, give yourself a break.
Raychel Perman: Right? Exactly. All right. So the U in P.A.U.S.E. is to utilize stolen moments. So what we realized over the years is that sometimes there are going to be seasons where you can’t do a full day of rest or you can’t do a full day of finding joy and having fun. But utilizing a stolen moment. So a stole moment is going to be anything from riding, driving in your car, commuting to standing and, even waiting for the doctor to anything where you’re just kind of waiting. There’s just this pause in your day where you might be doing something with your hands, but your brain is not actively doing anything or working. And one of the things that we tell people is when these moments come up, you utilize them for those moments of joy, for those moments that make you happy or relieve stress.
So that can be anything from listening to a podcast while you are driving. Or, some people really do enjoy music, but other people kind of tune it out. They’re not even listening to it. So it’s a way to kind of activate your brain. So you are utilizing that moment and not letting it just go away. I am a big fan of podcasts and I think the only way that I ever get all of them in, during the week is because I do listen to them when I’m driving. I’m also a big fan of audiobooks, especially when my kids are in the car, it’s a great way to stop the fighting sometimes in the vehicle, but also they’re just this little sponge in the back of the vehicle, listening to great books.
They are listening to podcasts. They’re just absorbing everything in and around me. And so I do really take this one seriously and make sure that I have music that calms me. I have apps on my phone that if I’m feeling anxious, I can put my earbuds in and listen to brainwave-type music and all of that kind of stuff. It’s definitely things that I’ve noticed over the last 10 years that my kids now do much more naturally, they understand the importance of rest. And, you know, if mom is napping or, anything like that, They have grown up with this idea of even though we don’t nap anymore, it’s important to rest. It’s important to pause. It’s important to feed your mind with truth and feed your mind with joy and feed your mind with happiness in those moments where you could just sit and slump for a while or you could actually help yourself to feel better. And a lot of that stuff does relieve your stress. Just sitting in the car sometimes listening to music, as I said for me. So for me, it just becomes another stolen moment. But that’s what you mean to utilize those moments in your life that could be stolen from you, but it could even be cooking. It could be anything where your hands are busy, but your brain is kind willing, and ready to absorb information.
Krystal Jakosky: I absolutely love that. I love that you listen to books and stuff in the car that the kid too. I was just talking about this concept with another friend and I said we could teach kids compassion and understanding if we start much younger and say, mom needs a break, or dad needs a break. So we’re literally teaching them that self-care is really important. Emotions are absolutely valid and it’s okay to speak up and say, this is where I’m at, which completely changes the dialogue from what we used to have to a new, more aware, compassionate way of being. I absolutely love that. In fact, I used to suffer from migraines a lot. I mean, I would have five migraines in nine days. I would be laid flat and totally taken out of the game.
And, the day I was late for my kids’ school to pick them up and they were in kindergarten and first grade. When I woke up, when I got there, I was so apologetic. I’m so sorry guys. My son looked at me and he said, it’s okay. I figured you just had another migraine and you were napping. Don’t worry about it, mom, you can take care of yourself. With that compassion right there I knew I would be a mom because my son understands that compassion. Absolutely beautiful. I love where you’re going with that and how you’re pulling that out.
Raychel Perman: Yes, I’m trying to. Every generation has a chance to do it differently. I started having nerve pain and all kinds of crazy symptoms about three years ago. Still to this day, there’s not an official diagnosis. What I have is peripheral neuropathy, but usually, that’s a secondary, something to do with diabetes or something to do with cancer treatment, honestly, it can just happen as you get older, but I’m not old enough to have nerve pain like that. The way that my kids are so compassionate about the days where the pain is above what my coping skills can handle, what the medication I need to be on for pain relief can handle, how much they understand that now, and how it doesn’t happen nearly as often as it used to. We’ve got a better hold on some of the pain management.
Watching them kind of just understand this because they had seen it modeled. It was really a cool moment for me as a mom. I did have some mom guilt for sure when I couldn’t get to the games. I couldn’t get to what I needed to. There was a good year when I couldn’t walk very well. We had to have conversations about do we need to put a lift on our stairs? I mean, it got a little scary for a while there. I definitely had to deal with the guilt of some of that, but those kids have turned out to be so compassionate and understanding of their own emotions and rest and, taking these moments when mom is available and feeling good and not wasting those. So those have kind of become utilizing stolen moments for me has definitely become when my kids are home, because now that I share them all of a sudden, my time with them is in half.
That really makes you think differently about the time that you have with them and how what you are doing during that time. So utilized still in moments has definitely been one that has evolved over the years for me, but I think it’s one of my favorites. Once you get past that kind pay attention to your emotions and allow your time to rest and then you can start saying, okay, what is it that I actually like to do, want to do? How can I feel in those moments of joy?
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. One of my favorites, I love to connect with family and friends and I want to do that on the phone, but I often don’t have time when I’m at home because when I’m at home, everybody else is checking in. So if I’m in the car and I know I’m going to be in the car for 20 or 30 minutes, I’ll call somebody, Hey, I’m in the car. I just want to check in with you, what’s going on? How can we chat? How can we connect?
Raychel Perman: That is a great way to utilize this stole moment. I love it. Right?
Krystal Jakosky: Because then I feel great because I finally got to connect with them and, we were able to really support each other in whatever was going on. That is the stolen moment that I absolutely love to take advantage of on occasion. So yeah, stolen moments. Love it.
Raychel Perman: Okay. That’s awesome. We always have these great ones that come from the audiences where we can get a great idea. We share them when we get new ones with another audience. So I’m going to put that one in there. It’s a great idea. So the S for P.A.U.S.E. is to say no, and usually what we’re coming down to is the person who’s over-committed in their schedule or the person who is the people pleaser. The person who just really has a hard time putting out those boundaries. Even sometimes when our entrepreneurs come in and they don’t even have work hours set up, if they’re working from home or they have a designated office space, as sometimes it’s not always saying no to a commitment that you made that you might need to, but it might be saying no, just to say this is my boundary.
Raychel Perman: This is where my boundary ends, and this is where yours begins, and learning how to do that is definitely a part of this learning. How to pause and release stress. Because we take on way more stress than we need to, we take on other people’s stress when we don’t know how to say no in the appropriate space and in the appropriate way. Sometimes it can be literally as simple as we give them a script of how to get out of something that somebody’s asked them to do, especially the things that I think we struggle with the most are a good thing. Like it’s something we really want to do. There is no time in our schedule for it. It’s going to be much more of a commitment than we want it to be, but it’s like that struggle between good and great.
Raychel Perman: That’s where I see most women struggle. It’s easier to say no to something you really don’t want to do. Especially if you’ve done some of the personal growth and you’re not as much of a people pleaser, as you might have been in the past, it’s easier for you to say no, that’s just not going to work for me. But it’s really learning that skill of how to say no to the good so that you have time for the great and figuring out priorities can be a part of that too.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. I think people forget, or maybe it’s just not out there saying no is actually saying yes to you.
Raychel Perman: Yeah. It is definitely saying yes, something that is probably better. That is hard to do. Especially the younger we are the harder this is. I think it definitely gets easier as we age because we have some experience of knowing what it’s like to say no to the good. When you have some experience you can look back on, it makes it easier every time you have to say no. Sometimes when we were presenting this, I wonder if I have everything? It’s been a really long time since there’s been something that I have to say no to. I’ve gotten good at it over the years and I think it’s just practice. A lot of this stuff just comes down to just practicing it every day, every moment that you have an opportunity to just check in, and what am I feeling right now?
What is my body feeling? What am I thinking? Right our lack of self-awareness can really cause a lot of problems when it comes to stress and releasing stress and transitions all of that stuff, I think. And, and you’re going through transitions. This is one of the most important tools that I use in checking in with myself, making sure that I have rest utilizing those moments when I am by myself to do the healing that I need to do, and saying no to the things that are not serving me right now. The E in P.A.U.S.E. is really the thing that gives the clincher. That’s embracing the truth that you’re worth it. And it’s the truth that you are worth taking care of yourself, that you are worth taking up space in this world that you are worth being in.
Just the simple act of taking care of your health, taking care of your mind and your soul. That’s definitely the thing I think many, many women struggle with is this idea that they’re worth the time that it takes. I mean, a 24-hour rest day can feel like the worst feeling for some women because they just simply can’t wrap their brains around the idea yet that they’re worth 24 hours of joy. They are worth 24 hours of rest, 24 hours where they’re not working or consuming or doing anything like that. So it takes a while. Definitely, as I said, this is a lifestyle. This is not an overnight thing. Embracing that truth, that you’re worth it. And I remember it was probably maybe a month or two after I had filed for divorce.
I went to my regular doctor. It was for my yearly exam or whatever. It had been a while since I had been in. I wasn’t doing great. It was only a few months after the divorce, I was losing a lot of weight. I was under an enormous amount of stress and all that. I remember as she was talking to me, her voice kind of lowered. I was concerned. She did about 80 tests. I’m sure that didn’t come out great. And she said I want you to promise me from this point forward that you’re going to take care of yourself first. Nobody had ever really said that to me at a moment when I was really learning that skill.
Seeing it come to play in real life and not making decisions based on what somebody else was going to do or how somebody else was going to react. That’s just kind of floated in the back of my head ever since. When I started going through a lot of the medical stuff, and when you have a medical condition come up, that nobody knows what is. You are all over the place to all kinds of different doctors, your poked and prodded and everything comes back that you know all the blood tests you’re healthy and everything is fantastic. And you’re clearly not, I can’t even walk up my own stairs. But I did have a doctor that I just loved. At one point he just looked at me and said, you know, you don’t have to live like this life can be better.
All you have to do is be willing to ask for help. And the help at that point was getting on the depression meant that I needed to get on. Like I had been fighting that tooth and nail to not have to be on it. It’s just those moments that you can lean back on and just kind of be like, you know what? I am worth taking care of my health. I am worth taking care of me when it comes to my mental and my emotional stability. And that’s what this whole Art of the P.A.U.S.E. is about because the beautiful thing about it is you don’t have to embrace the truth, the truth that you’re worth it first before you can get started, it kind of naturally builds along with it. So it’s not like you have to just jump into this thing of all of these counseling sessions or journal sessions to embrace the truth that you’re worth it. You honestly get started with P and all of a sudden over, you know, not all of a sudden over time. You start to see the worth, you start to see the value in what it is that you’re doing and it’s not so hard anymore to see that you are worth taking care of that your health and your life matter and it’s worth taking care of.
Krystal Jakosky: Okay. I love that. I tell people little steps, just take a little step, a tiny step. What tiny step can you take right now towards where you want to be, and then take another tiny step. Then take another tiny step. Whether that’s on your one year, five years, 10-year goals, whatever that is just a tiny step. And that’s what P.A.U.S.E. is doing. Take a tiny step and just pay attention right now. Just pay attention. Maybe keep a journal, maybe write down what you’re going through and keep track of your emotions during the day, whatever it is, just start paying attention and then allow yourself to recognize that this is your problem. Now I’m going to say, it’s okay, I’m going to rest. And whether it’s physical rest, mental rest, emotional rest, whatever area you decide, I’m going to rest in this and you can work up to a 24-hour period. You don’t have to do it all at once.
Raychel Perman: They’re great when you can have them. But we also know the reality of life and it’s not always that easy to do, but it’s fantastic when you can.
Krystal Jakosky: You might start with five minutes. You say this is my five minutes and then, you know, a week later it’s 10 minutes, you can build up to that. Then utilizing the stolen moments is so fantastic and so easy. It’s just another one of those little steps. I love how the whole thing just builds on each other and then says no, which is saying yes. And just recognizing whether or not you really want to do that. I have a friend who is so like, hi, everything’s great. And I’m like, yes, everything’s great. Then she’s like, will you help me with this. Because she’s all excited, I think, yes, I’ll do it. Then later, oh shit, I don’t necessarily want to do that.
Raychel Perman: I do that.
Krystal Jakosky: Right. So I’ve learned with her.
Raychel Perman: And they’re like, no, I don’t want to do this.
Krystal Jakosky: In that moment, in that energy with her, you say yes, it sounds like so much fun because you’re riding the wave with your friend, and then later you say, what the hell did I just agree to? That is so far outside my comfort zone. So I am with her. I’ve learned how to say, let me check into it and I’ll call you back, or let me check into it and I’ll get back to you. It’s worked because she’s like, okay, great. Just let me know if you’re into it. Then after the wave has gone, I can sit with it and say, how do I really feel about this without someone else’s emotions, just taking me along. So saying no can literally be taking a pause, P.
Raychel Perman: Yep. Not responding right away.
Krystal Jakosky: Exactly. Then just embrace the U. I love that. That’s the last thing because everything else just naturally builds up to it and brings you this, oh, wait a minute. I am worth it. And I’ve been giving myself that. This is fantastic. And I am absolutely valid in this space. And, you’ve been giving it to yourself all along. That is so beautiful and impressive.
Raychel Perman: I mean, honest, like we wait till we all feel like we’re worth it. We’re not going to, it’s going to take, how long has it already taken? I mean, most of the time, by the time our clients come to us, it’s been decades that they haven’t been taking care of themselves. And how much longer do we need to wait for that. The beautiful thing is you do this at the same time that you’re learning how to embrace the truth. That you’re worth it. Maybe it is going to take counseling. Maybe it is going to take therapy. Maybe it’s going to take some major steps, but you can do an art deposit at the same time. It fits into any lifestyle. A common question I always get with this one is how do I do this when my kids are little?
I love that you brought that up. You could just do this 20 minutes at a time, like legit. My littlest was six months old when we started this company and she’s going to be 10 this summer. So I lived this out with them when they were little and their dad was gone half the year with his job. So I was a part-time single parent. And I had to figure out how to survive with three kids. I was in school still at the time and trying to build the first parts of this business that we have now. And that’s what I would do. So as they started to transition out of nap time when one of the other ones was sleeping, I would set timers for like 10 minutes, I think that is how I started.
You had to stay in your room for 10 minutes. You did not have to sleep. I didn’t even really care what you did. It just had to be quiet. You couldn’t be on a screen and mama is going to be in her room and you guys are going to be in your room. We would start at 10 minutes. Over time we got up to about an hour. Usually when the kids were little, even when they weren’t napping, they could stay in their room, they would play, and they would read their books. As they got older, now I can nap. And you know, they’re fine. It is so weird to be at that level of parenting. But it works, they’re so busy all the time and they do need these moments of rest.
And as parents, um, being able to utilize this, not only for yourself but also for your family is such a beautiful gift to be able to do. But yes, the timer, because then they know it’s going to end. Like it’s not this never-ending thing. They’re like, oh no, I’m stuck in my room forever and mom’s never coming out and I’ve got to go find her. Then they know it’s 10 minutes. If you have to start with five it’s better than nothing. It’s just working on these itty bitty baby steps like you said. And eventually, you get to the point that this just becomes a part of it. You notice when you don’t do it, that’s how you know something’s working when is the last time I had a rest day? When is the last time I like checking in with myself? When is the last time I remember to eat every few hours? And then you can easily go back into this lifestyle again, anytime you need it without the guilt or shame. Just start paying attention again and doing these steps and releasing some of the stress.
Krystal Jakosky: This is an acronym that everybody needs to have, like on their kitchen fridge or on their bathroom counter, or a little reminder on your phone that says, P.A.U.S.E., here we go, take a break. It’s absolutely fantastic. And I love it. I am so glad that you’ve been with us so that you could share this with us because it is hugely important and unbelievably beneficial. I love that it’s such simple bite-size pieces that people can apply in really easy ways to their lives. Little bit by little bit, doesn’t have to be 20. It can be five minutes. So thank you so much. Is there anything else that you really want to share with our listeners?
Raychel Perman: I feel like I’ve shared a lot.
Krystal Jakosky: I know.
Raychel Perman: Just the encouragement to start with P: paying attention to your emotions is a great place to start. One of the things that we often recommend is setting a timer on your phone every few hours, just to check-in, especially if you are going through a time right now, there were stresses really high, or you’re going through a storm. You’re going through a transition in your life. I literally had a time around my phone that went off every three hours that just said, remember to eat. So it can be as simple as just checking in with yourself set at that time or on your phone to check-in, in the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening, how am I feeling right now? Start practicing. Even if you’re going through anything, this is a great time to start practicing. And just, how am I feeling right now? What emotion would I call? What am I feeling right now? That’s a perfect way to start and it takes two minutes to do. You can write it down in a journal if you want, but you don’t even have to do that. You could just think about it and start practicing the different emotions and naming them and what you’re feeling like.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah, absolutely. I love it. Oh, thank you.
Raychel Perman: You’re welcome.
Krystal Jakosky: A couple of little questions before you go, uh, green or orange?
Raychel Perman: Ooh, green.
Krystal Jakosky: City or country?
Raychel Perman: City.
Krystal Jakosky: Large groups or personal time?
Raychel Perman: Mm. Usually personal time.
Krystal Jakosky: Pine trees or salty ocean air?
Raychel Jakosky: Ooh, salty ocean air.
Krystal Jakosky: Which season and why?
Raychel Perman: Fall? It always sounds so weird, but I had this fascination with the process of death, and dying and falling are always that time. That reminds me that even though things can look like they’re dead and they’re dying and winter is coming, there’s always going to be spring around the corner. Sounds like spring should be my favorite, but fall reminds me that even though we’re going through transitions, good days are coming.
Krystal Jakosky: Yeah. Oh, I love that. And my last question, you may have already answered it, but I still wanna ask this question. What is your favorite kind of self-care, maybe it’s unique and different, but what is your favorite kind of self-care and why?
Raychel Perman: Okay. My favorite kind of self-care right now is what I call redneck hot tubing. So in the middle of the pandemic is when I started having all of this pain and, it was not in the budget to buy a hot tub or anything like that. We started doing research on a portable hot tub. And you know, it was a 10th of the price of a regular hot tub. And my husband said, listen, if it works for one year we’ll use it. And it’s in our garage and we have Christmas lights up around it. It’s my favorite thing to do is redneck hot tubing. And so that is my oddball, but best way that I do self-care right now, is mostly it’s just so fun and it’s in our garage and we have friends over sometimes. I am in there probably five nights outta seven before I go to bed. It’s good for me to fall asleep.
Krystal Jakosky: Oh, I love it. Do you have one of those blow-up Palm trees that go in?
Raychel Perman: We don’t, but we have talked about actually building walls around it in the garage. We have this kooky design in our garage. Because I have a hard time, I have sensory processing things. And so too, as my kids and we always have the wind in North Dakota and I don’t like being out in the hot tub when it’s windy. Well, there are three days out of the year that it’s not windy. So we might actually just leave the hot tub in the garage and build walls around it. And then I probably will. I could have Tiki things and we could build all this stuff and it’s not on the 10-year plan until then it’ll just sit in the back of the garage with the Christmas lights.
Krystal Jakosky: I love it. That is fantastic. Thank you so much for being here with us, Raychel, I just have another question. How can people find you?
Raychel Perman: Well, the easiest way to find me is probably on Instagram. That’s probably where I spend most of my time when it comes to social media. So my handle is Raychel Perman, R A Y C H E L P E R M A N. And our company website is www.raymateam.com R A Y M A T E A M.com. And that’s where you can find out how to work with me. Any of the products coming up or are courses coming up and events, all of that stuff will be there, but hit me up on Instagram. That’s where you’re going to be able to really find me the easiest. And I do, it’s me and my DMs, if you want to talk or see the information that I have on there, that’s the easiest way to find me.
Krystal Jakosky: Fabulous. Okay guys, put it into practice, P.A.U.S.E., and enjoy life. And until next time, we’ll see you here on Breathe In, Breathe Out.
I hope this moment of self-care and healing brought you some hope and peace. I’m @krystaljakosky on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube and I hope you check us out and follow along for more content coming soon. I look forward to being with you again here on Breathe In, Breathe Out. Until next time, take care.