Ep 1: An Introduction to Being Quietly Bohemian

In our very first episode we kick off with an exploration of what it means to be Quietly Bohemian and how to live life true to yourself guided by your inner wisdom and not your inner critic. And we do that with a “Quietly Bohemian mystery guest”.

We talk about:

  • Who and what is Quietly Bohemian
  • The difficulties introverts and highly sensitive people face in an extrovert world
  • My online dating profile
  • Is labelling ourselves as introverts and HSPs helpful?
  • The tension between wanting to do something and not being able to
  • Being introverted or highly sensitive doesn’t have to restrict you
  • The seesaw of doubt and wisdom
  • A highly sensitive experience of being on TV

And yes we mention Depeche Mode.


Full Interview Transcript

(scroll down if you prefer to download the transcript)

Welcome to Quietly Bohemian, the podcast for introvert and highly sensitive people with Big Dreams, where we look at turning away from your inner critic and towards your inner wisdom so you do your thing, your way, in your own time and live life true to yourself. I’m your host, Laura Li, Transformational Life Coach. You can find out more about me and living life your way at quietlybohemian.com

Welcome to the very first episode of Quietly Bohemian. It’s an introduction both to me and being Quietly Bohemian and the episode looks at amongst other things, how difficult it can be to be a quiet person in an extrovert world and the tensions between wanting to be seen and wanting to stay hidden.

Laura: Welcome to Episode 1 of Quietly Bohemian and in true Bohemian fashion, I have decided that my first guest to be interviewed on the show will be me! Seemed like a good idea at the time. And so to interview me today I'm really excited to introduce you to my friend, my colleague Mallory Wisong, who is a virtual assistant, breathwork healer, and just one of the most loving, brilliant funny people I know. So thank you Mal for agreeing to join me today.

Mallory: Thank you Laura. I'm so excited and honoured that you chose me to come on your show and to interview you. Can't wait to help people get to know you a little bit better.

Laura: Thank you.

Mallory: So with that let's get started. And my first question for you is very simple and very easy. No, I'm just kidding. My first question for you Laura is who are you?

Laura: Oh, very simple, not so easy. Who am I?

I confess I joined a dating website once and you had to do a profile and I said I take life seriously and I like to laugh; I like going out and I like staying in; I like Celine Dion and I love Depeche Mode.

We're all a mixture of everything and I'm like a deer in the headlights as soon as somebody asks me something like that because how do you narrow that down to encapsulate one thing? But I know I'm supposed to say I'm a life coach who works with introverts and highly sensitive people to help them bring their dreams to life and move past self-doubt and their inner critic.

But when I say that, in all of that, I identify mostly with the part about being an introvert and a highly sensitive person. And so I'm going to go with that for today.

Mallory: I think that is a great way to sum up and lead us into the next question because you've just started your new podcast, which obviously we are starting right now, and your website which is called Quietly Bohemian. So would you like to tell us a little bit more about the idea behind quietly bohemian?

Laura: I’m going to start with the Bohemian part. have to start back to front. And bohemianism is the practice of unconventional living and often with a focus on musical, spiritual, artistic or literary pursuits and I loved the idea of unconventional living at least as much as it pertains to whatever each person seems to be conventional to them.

So for me really a 9 to 5 job is conventional and also kind of trying to fit in with what other people expect of me is conventional rather than just being who I am and doing the things I want to do. And also there's a sense that trying to fit myself into an extrovert world and be more outgoing and be more of how people think you need to be to be successful or to get ahead or to get along. I would bracket all that in conventional.

And the quiet part speaks to, obviously I'm introverted and I'm highly sensitive and that falls under quietly, which is nice and neat. More than that though quietly to me reflects the fact that in order for me to move past self-doubt and move past worrying about what other people think and move past all these ideas of the things I should do rather than the things I could do, all the things I'd like to do, is being quiet, being still and listening for my inner wisdom. And so I kind of just smooshed those two ideas together and they seemed to encapsulate very succinctly my idea of how I want to be in the world and the way I would like to help other people who may be going through similar challenges - and it is slightly ironic that something which is so succinct in my mind takes so many words to explain but hope that I gives a flavour of where I'm coming from when I talk about being Quietly Bohemian.

Mallory: Absolutely does and it does leave it open for the bigger vision when I hear those words Quietly Bohemian. I have my own kind of vision of what that means. And so it's really great to hear from you what you think it means and what it means to you personally and speaking of personally you identify as an introvert and a highly sensitive person.

And so why is it exactly that you want to work with those types of people?

Laura: Being introverted and highly sensitive which just in case people listening aren’t familiar with that expression, it means you feel things more deeply than other people and you're much more sensitive to feelings and noises and sounds.

And one of the things I'm really sensitive to is being visible, literally standing up in front of people and being seen, and also putting my opinion out there and saying what I think  is very very difficult for me and that has really held me back in creating this business and doing the work that I really want to do.

And that would be enough. I think to want to help other people who are going through similar issues with being held back by the voices in their head that are telling them to sit down every time they want to stand up both metaphorically and literally. But as an introverted person I've had coaching from a number of coaches and as a client the experience I've had has been so difficult and I think has actually held me back and slowed me down in reaching my goals rather than helping me accelerate my progress. Because people have coached me as if I should just be able to move at their pace and do the things that they think I should do, the things that they have done, and it really did not work for me

I've had a couple of experiences which were really good, but the vast majority have slowed me down and made me feel worse about myself as if somehow I'm even more of a failure because I can't keep up with what they want me to do. And so I feel so strongly that I would like to be able to support people and coach people in whatever way that recognises and honours anybody who is feeling deeply sensitive, introverted, quiet and needs to go at their own pace in their own way.

And when I say that we live in an extroverted world and I don't really know that there are many more extroverts than there are introverts, but the way I experience the world and the way I genuinely believe it to be is that the world values extrovert qualities, and so trying to fit into that can be quite difficult and us introverts we get pushed around by the extroverts and told to, you know, just do it and just get on with it and don't worry. Oh my goodness. If I had a penny for every time somebody told me not to worry or don't stress out, I would be rivaling Bill Gates, but we get pushed around and just to give you one example:

I started a new job years ago and first or second day, can't remember, my manager took me to meet the senior manager of the department. And I remember his office was at the end of this long corridor and when we got down to the end of the corridor, got to his office, the doorway, the door was open and I can't remember why I stopped other than everything is new, everything is so overwhelming. I'm trying to take everything in, and I stopped in the doorway and he was working at his desk and I can remember thinking am I supposed to go in? Does he actually want to talk to me? Does he want to have a conversation? Is he too busy? Should I say hello? Should I wait for him to speak first?

I mean if you want to know what being highly sensitive and introverted is that's kind of it in a nutshell - all this information being bombarded with and trying to process it and can't make a decision and while I'm standing in the doorway looking at him, making a decision what to do my manager literally pushed me from behind and shoved me into his office.

And so my first meeting with him was stumbling into his office and I hope nobody is really getting literally pushed around like I did that day, but I think that is a really neat example of how we are being expected to behave the way other people think we should and my coaching is saying to people you don't have to put up with that.

We can just be ourselves and go our own way. And there's nothing you can do to stop somebody literally pushing you into somebody else's office. But it's about being able to deal with that in a different way. And not maybe take that to heart so much and maybe think I should have done something differently to have avoided that.

Mallory: I love it. I love it so much because I have a lot of the similar experience with coaching in the traditional sense. And so while we're on the subject of what coaching appears to be, you kind of have your own philosophy. So will you tell me a little bit more about what coaching is to you and how you define coaching?

Laura:  I've heard people say that coaching is motivating you to do the things that you don't want to do and why would anybody waste time and money on getting somebody to motivate them to do things they don't want to do? I mean, I don't know if it's number one in my coaching philosophy, but way up there is if you don't want to do it just don't do it.

Just seems quite simple to me. So my approach would be more to help you find the things you do want to do and to help you find the ways to do them that make sense to you, that feel doable to you, feel inspirational to you, feel exciting to you. And coaching the way I do it is very much about drawing out from you what you want to do and the way you want to do it rather than me telling you what you should do and giving you a plan or a formula for the way you should make that happen.

Mallory: Beautiful. I totally agree yet again. I love working with you and knowing you are asking me the questions that help me go deeper into not just what I want, but why I want it and that really helps me to move forward instead of like you said needing to be motivated or threatened or pushed into doing something that I don't want to do to begin with.

So, thank you and it's beautiful. I love it. So under Quietly Bohemian, you have a podcast you have a website. You have a newsletter and you are a life coach. So, can you tell me a little bit more about how you use coaching throughout your entire business?

Laura: When we talk about coaching, we normally talk about one-to-one coaching or increasingly group coaching and truthfully, there will be so few people I think who really want to spend the time money and energy in that intense one-to-one relationship. I absolutely love that. But I recognize that not everybody is going to want that so that is one obvious place where I do my coaching, but I also see my newsletter and my podcast as vehicles to deliver coaching to people. It's very difficult as I've just said that coaching is about drawing out people's answers from themselves rather than telling them what they should do or teaching or mentoring,  I hope sharing my own experiences, and as I have guests on the podcast who are going to share their experiences as well, that people will get their own inspiration from seeing how other people have been inspired or overcome their challenges and be able to apply that to their own lives in their own way. So, I include the podcast and my newsletter and the blog on my website as ways to deliver coaching to people as well.

Mallory: And along those lines as we touched on previously and you just mentioned you don't have a system or 10 steps to success or any formula, but you have more of a philosophy. So could you tell me a little bit more about moving away from the inner critic and into your inner wisdom?

Laura: I do  have a philosophy and  the heart of that philosophy is what I was taught in coaching school, is that everybody has their own answers within them and as I’ve kind of learned and developed my own expertise, I've come to a slightly more spiritual understanding of that actually or a deeper spiritual understanding perhaps in that, , we have a connection to what I'm going to call Source Energy and my view of that is a kind of energy that runs through the universe, the Creative Energy, whether it actually created the universe or not I don't know, but it is the energy that we connect to and access and that moves through us when we create anything in our lives.  And I think it's that energy that comes to us when we have a flash of inspiration that says, you know, I want to start a business, or I want to find a relationship, or I want a better job, or I just want to be more confident, I want to speak up in meetings at work.

Whenever we kind of have that idea. I think it's coming from a universal energy that's flowing through us - and then quite often for people, and this isn't unique to introverts or highly sensitive people by any means, but I think we can process it differently, I think it can hold us back more maybe than people who don't process the world internally the way that we do, but hot on the heels of that flash of inspiration can often come that doubt of oh, I'm not good enough, what will people think, I don't know if I can actually make this happen and so I like to, in my coaching, shift people more into accessing, as I say going quiet, going still and accessing that wisdom and connecting much more strongly to that and then the doubt quiets down.

I think of it as a seesaw actually. So you know the seesaw goes up and down and when we first have that idea, that inspiration is riding high and the doubt is quite low down and as we focus on the doubt: I don't know if I can do this, I'm not good enough, what will people think, I'm not clever enough, young enough, smart enough, thin enough, and then the seesaw starts to tip the other way. And now the doubt is right up there, and the inspiration is down low, and we really becoming disconnected from that idea. And the doubt is really blocking our path and so my job is just to help you connect back to that inspiration and to balance the seesaw out and eventually tip it back up the other way.

Mallory: That's such a great metaphor.  I have a great vision of all of the ideas that I've had and how it felt to feel that inspiration and feel like oh, yes, I can do this and then to allow those voices, it’s such a great metaphor for how it is. And so along those lines, this is how you work with other people, but would you mind sharing a little bit about how you cultivate this in your own life some of your practices or things that you like to do to tap into that inner wisdom.

Laura:  First of all, I have my own coach and she helps me do that, so I don't just do this on my own. I do have somebody who can facilitate that with me because sometimes I think it is easier to have somebody in that process with you, especially when the voice of doubt is getting really loud. But equally I don't think that people need to have a coaching session every time they’re coming up against a little stumbling block.

So, I could say I have a daily practice. I mean I suppose I do have one. It's just I don't do it every day. But things that I know that have helped me, the things that I know have really  made a difference and obviously the more I do, the more consistent I am with them, the greater the benefit I find and the first thing is just going for a quick walk every morning.

As soon as I get up, I just walk around the block. It takes about 10 to 15 minutes and that clears my head a little bit and I started that actually when I was being bullied at work and I would have been off sick. I would have been off sick with depression, or stress, or anxiety, whatever label you want to put on that, but I just had been down that road so many times before and for various reasons, this situation I was in, I don't know, I suppose I just got myself to a point where I realized that wasn't what I wanted to do, and I wanted to actually get through this without labeling myself as having an illness when perhaps I actually didn't. I don't know how I got it into my head to go for this walk. But I used to go for this walk every morning and I would have all these thoughts about my manager and the things that he was doing and the feelings I had about it and, kind of, by the 15 minutes that I'd gone round the block I would be much calmer. It was still quite stressful to go into work, but it was actually manageable, and I think perhaps without time to settle my mind, perhaps I would have been off sick. So, I don't know where that idea came from but that is one thing that definitely really helps me settle and then when I come in from that I do a five minute meditation.

I use the app insight timer, love the little bells that go off and I just sit there and I go inside. I try to really just get inside and deep inside myself.  I've never really seen this as kind of way that anyone has taught meditation or anything like that and I don't know if it really is a meditation but I really focus on deep inside and I've had some really kind of profound experiences that are quite difficult to put into words really but I remember shortly after I started doing that I was traveling to work on the train one morning, and I could hear all the sounds around me, like people talking on their phones, people rustling their newspapers, people having conversations with each other, the train announcements and it was like all those sounds were separate from each other. And like I say, I don't really have the words to explain my experience.  But it was like I was in a bubble and everything around me was just so different. So again, I know that doing that meditation, but just five minutes everyday makes a profound difference in the way I experience the world.

And the other thing I do is journaling. I love writing, the journaling is quite similar I think to walking around the block. It's just getting my thoughts out, but I tend to do that just because I love writing.  And then I also, I don't know if this is part of my daily practice, but it is to do with connecting to my wisdom really so it wouldn't be something that I necessarily do every day as part of that routine but to connect my wisdom I do sling oracle, and sometimes, tarot cards and not to necessarily like look to the future, to what's going to happen, although hands up, yes sometimes I do do that, but it's pulling a card and thinking about the card I pulled and what that means for me. That does help me go inside to access my own wisdom and what I'm really thinking about that.

So those are not things that I would not necessarily say to other people, hey go off and do these things but they're things that I've done. So if you want to try them if you're not doing them already gives them a go, but it's just an example of how those are things that I've found for myself that work for me.

So that's what I want for you. I want you to find your own practice that will move you more towards your inner wisdom.

Mallory: I love it. I'm a big fan of tarot and oracle cards myself, as you know so much the same way like a lot of times they show me things. I don't necessarily want to deal with and I'm like, oh, yeah, I guess it's time to deal with that particular thing.

Laura: Yeah,

Mallory: So we earlier we talked a bit about labels specifically introvert. I know INFJ is something that comes up a lot and then highly sensitive person or HSP. Would you share your thoughts on labels and how we use them both to our benefit and possibly our detriment?

Laura:  I talk about introverts and highly sensitive people. I am an INFJ. I tend not to talk about that so much because I think perhaps fewer people know about it. And also how many initials can you bombard people with? But I definitely identify as all of those things and I also don't like labels.

Until quite recently. I would have hidden behind those labels. I would have made those labels mean I can't do these things because I'm an introvert, because I'm highly sensitive.  And in some ways it was a measure of comfort because it meant that I didn't have to criticize or judge myself for being unable to do things.

The labels actually were beneficial but as I say it kind of then became a way to avoid doing things.  And I continue to use those labels because I think they are also how I largely perceive the world and they do serve as a way of us talking about things that makes it easy for us to understand the common experiences that we have.

So if we talk about being introverted, we can all understand it means a person who is quiet, who gets their energy from being alone rather than being with other people, and who tends to process things internally in their heads rather than in a different way, so I think it is useful in that sense.

But what I have come to see since I have been practicing more and more connecting to my inner wisdom, that things that were impossible for me before because I was highly sensitive, are not impossible. So I use the label because it is useful but I reject the label in the sense that it is not in any way an indicator of what you can or cannot actually do.

And I would also say that is not who you are one hundred percent of the time either and so to use that to describe who you are is not entirely accurate. I'm not really one of these kind of word police that says all you shouldn't call yourself an introvert because it's not true a hundred percent of the time and because you're restricting yourself because I think it does still serve a purpose.

But I would not want anybody to labour under the misapprehension that either they are always that way or that it would always stop them from doing something. And again that is a large part of my coaching is to help people do those things.  Whatever it is, they want to do regardless of their temperament regardless of how difficult it is to be seen or to put themselves out there in front of large groups of people.

I'm trying to think of an example and one of the biggest examples people give is: introverts don't like small talk. We want to have deep meaningful conversations.

That's another thing, I think when we label ourselves as this, and it's understandable because as I say, we're not necessarily in a minority, but we experience ourselves as in a minority because of the way the world is set up and the way the world values more extrovert traits, we also tend to label it or at least some introverts and highly sensitive people can use it as a kind of Us and Them thing and we're better than they are because we're quiet because we like reading rather than going to nightclubs and because we want to be on our own and I wouldn't change I wouldn't want to be more extroverted.

I'm sure extroverted people don't want to be more introverted we’re all largely happy with the way we are but neither of us is better or worse than the other. So that's another thing.  But an often-quoted thing is all introverts don't do small talk. We just want to have deep meaningful conversations with people and I often I hate small talk.  I’m just really so uncomfortable I don't want to do it and yet many times I've engaged in conversation with people and had small talk. I did it yesterday in the Chinese takeaway with the woman. She was telling me about her husband who was going to have to give up work soon because he wasn't well so,  was I an introvert in that situation? Wasn't I an introvert? Was I an introvert that could do small talk?  Doesn't really matter but that's just to say those are labels that I use and I am aware that that could be misinterpreted, but I don't subscribe to the view certainly that we are stuck within those labels.

Mallory: Brings me back to your initial, who are you and the dating profile and how you're like, I'm all of these things. I am human have a lot of these things. I'm never just one thing but it can also be helpful to kind of have a word for Oh, that's why I am this way or that's why that particular thing seems challenging or difficult for me. So yes, and so as such, as an introvert, a highly sensitive person, you've probably faced your own unique set of challenges, especially in building a business. Can you tell us about maybe what the biggest challenges that you've encountered so far?

Laura:  I knew you were going to ask me this question actually and I was thinking oh, you know the biggest challenge? Really could you ever single out something as the biggest challenge? But as you asked me that just then I thought yes, I can definitely tell you the biggest challenge and it is this I want to coach people. I love coaching people and when I say that I mean I love being able to help people. I love being able to help them connect to their own wisdom. I love seeing them have those aha moments. I love seeing them being able to actually do something they thought they couldn't do and the biggest challenge I face is I hate being in one-to-one conversations with people.

It is so uncomfortable for me. I spend so much time up in my head worried about what the client is thinking. Am I asking the right questions? Am I asking clever questions? Am I asking good questions? And that has really slowed me down, again because it's just something where I really prevaricated about. And you know that thing I've heard other coaches say actually, especially when you're starting out is kind of like you really want the client to cancel. So, oh thank goodness. I haven't got to go through that coaching session. So yeah, that is definitely the biggest challenge. You know, maybe that's a crazy thing to say. I don't know. Maybe I'm going to go back and edit this out! But that is the truth. That is definitely the biggest challenge I've had and the better I get at my craft, the more committed I get to this, the more I do actually put myself out there, the more I'm able to do this. The more I'm able to do this with that little voice going on and the more that little voice is getting quieter and quieter.

But yeah, that is a challenge for me to want to be a coach and yet find coaching, not in the craft of coaching, but in the sense of that intense experience of being one-to-one, and that may be surprising because, you know as I say, that introverts that's the kind of thing they like - a kind of one-to-one experience rather than a group thing.

Mallory: Well, there is an element of being seen even in a one-on-one conversation. You are showing up vulnerably you're entering into this very intimate, as you said, experience with another person and as an introvert or a highly sensitive person being seen is somewhat of a challenge. So maybe you could tell us a little bit more about the tension that you have to live with between the desire to help people and wanting this business to succeed and to get yourself out there, so to speak, and then also the fear of being seen and the challenges that come along with that.

Laura: Yeah, you're right. It is a tension. I don't really know what I could tell you about that. I did my first coach training in 2003. So it's been 16 years of living with a desire to help people to create a business and a necessary part of that is being visible. But also I want to be visible. I want to be seen, I want to voice my opinions. I want to blog and write newsletters. I want to speak on a podcast and at the same time I've had that voice telling me to sit down and be invisible and I've largely worked very hard at making myself be invisible as well. It has certainly been a tension. It brings up all sorts of ideas about being a failure, not being a good enough. It's interesting because it's about who am I? Because I can say I want to be seen but at the same time I don't want to be seen so I don't know quite how those two parts of us fit together, but the part of me that I think of as me, which I guess is the part I would call my inner wisdom, definitely wants to do these things. There is no doubt about that. I don't think I'd still be going, because it's 16 years later, if I didn't really want to do these things. It’s a testament to how strong and loud that inner critical voice has been and how much attention I've paid to it and how much focus I've put on it.

And again, this is not unique to being an introvert or highly sensitive.  It is rolled up into one for me, I think, because I think it is largely my high sensitivity that makes it difficult to be In front of people and I think I can forget that sometimes and this is how I know the me that I identify with does want to do these things.

I went on a TV quiz show here. Absolutely my favorite quiz show of all time. It's called Pointless, and it's just a silly little quiz, but I absolutely loved it. The two presenters, love both of them, wanted to go on. I didn't really know if I could win it, but just thought it'd be really good to meet these two guys Alexander Armstrong and Richard Osman and just be able to speak to them and we got through. It's obviously a process you have to go through to actually get on the show and we got through it so quickly and easily.

I had to go to an audition and do a little thing on tape for the producers and everything. No problem. Got there on the day. No problem. Then they sent us down to make up no problem. Then it was our turn to actually go on and they were putting the mic on us in the corridor outside the studio. I started to get nervous and it's kind of like well, going on TV you would get nervous wouldn't you? And then I went out onto the studio floor and I was really overwhelmed by this experience like, you know, like. someone is coming over to talk to us and Richard Osman's sitting there and all the audience and the lights and I just started as I am wont to do when I get overwhelmed and emotional, I started to cry a little bit. Not sobbing but just tears and then the makeup lady had to come over because my make had run. So she's trying to do my makeup. I've then got the studio producer explaining the rules of the quiz to me and then Alexander Armstrong had come over to say hello and to ask, how are you, why have you come on the quiz? And so I had all these three things happening at once and it was just too much and I just literally just shut down and it was horrible. I'd like I'd really wanted to get on this quiz show so much and I finally got there, and I just could not function and we were on the first Podium and the first question, Jerry said to me. Oh. You go first. So thanks very much. So US presidents with names six letters or fewer. Now, luckily I'd actually revised this because I know this quiz, so well, I know that kind of question comes up so much but so Xander asked me, he said I heard you've been revising and I said, yes I have and I gave my answer and then Richard Osman who I absolutely love he said to me: Oh, did you really revise? I just said Yes! and then as I was trying to think of something else to say they just moved on to the next person and I thought you know, I'd waited all this time to get on this quiz show and to speak to Richard Osman and he actually spoke to me and all I could say was Yes!

Every time the cameras went on I would just be like that deer in the headlights. I couldn't think, I couldn't speak like a normal person and the minute the cameras went off I just go back to normal. But each round, because we actually got through each round, and each round the cameras went back on and I just got more and more nervous. And by the semi-final I couldn’t, I could barely speak, and then we got to the final and we got, I mean we got my specialist subject. What are the chances of that? Right? We got British royal history, which I know a fair bit about and you get 60 seconds to come up the 3 correct answers.

And I just, and also the question involves, I think it was grandparents and great grandparents of certain monarchs.  So now you're asking me history, but with maths thrown in because now I've got to calculate the generations going backwards and maths is not my specialist subject.

So I just couldn't do it and. And we didn't win and then they felt really sorry for us actually, but I couldn't even have told you my own name at that point. So that is just an idea of the tension that I live with trying to be seen trying to do the things that I want to do, but my brain just hijacks me.

I knew correct answers. We would have won five grand. We would have gone on the Glacier Express train. Afterwards when it was all finished, Richard Osman said you’ve probably been the unluckiest contestants we've ever had because I know you know your subject. I made a mistake because I'd missed out a generation and Alexander Armstrong saw it on my face before the answer came up. He said oh what's wrong I said, oh, I think I've made a mistake, but we'll see. I knew some of the answers, but I just couldn't get them out. So that's just an example of how living with the tension not just in creating a business not just in trying to do this, just in trying to do anything that I feel called to do or excited about and then my brain just says I'm going to cooperate with you today.

I've got a Pointless Trophy. Yeah, we got the trophy, but we didn't quite win.

Mallory: I identify with that very strongly, the whole idea of like wait, I wanted to do this. I'm, I was so excited to do this and then I froze and I couldn't get through that so thank you for sharing that story.

Laura: Well, it's both a story I like to share and a story I just I want to run from. But, you know, the thing that astounds me about that is because I was so excited about going on it, it never occurred to me that I would shut down like that. I mean in hindsight I can see obviously I would have done, that but I was so excited and I got through such a long way before the nerves really kicked in.

So it's quite aside from the fact that I was really gutted that I didn't win because I knew the answers, it wasn't just like well, we got a question we didn't know. It was really disappointing, but aside from that it was quite fascinating just to observe what was actually happening to me.

But I tell you another thing and this is really interesting. So it was a TV show, so I uniquely got to see myself and people always say to you: Oh, you don't come across like that. You come across a lot more confident than you say you feel. And so I watched my performance. I mean, I really had to steel myself to watch this thing. But I actually did look quite confident and I could, as I was watching myself I could remember. Oh, yes at this point. I was thinking this, I was thinking that or gosh this was so horrible and yet actually the way I came across was a lot more confident and fluid than I felt and I think it's good to know that.  Whilst all that kind of stuff is going on in our head we can actually still come across as the confident person we actually are.

Mallory: Very interesting. It also makes me think about how we kind of hold ourselves back and get stuck in the idea of perfectionism and it just goes to show you that your own standards are probably a lot higher than what other people will observe and even what you observed of yourself you did seem a lot more calm and confident than you probably thought in the moment you were appearing.

Laura: Yeah, it was interesting.  It was still just really disappointing because the experience I had was not the same as the image. I portrayed so whilst yes, it's true, thankfully I didn’t look a complete twit, a little bit of one maybe, but that doesn't take away from the fact that I didn't really enjoy my experience and that was really what I went for so again, I think if we can just relax into our inner wisdom and be calmer, I think that does lead to a better experience of life overall.

Mallory: That feels like a really great place to end. So thank you again for having me on and allowing me the opportunity to interview you and I think I got to know you a little better and I'm sure that your listeners are getting to know you. So thank you again Laura.

Laura: Well, thank you Mal. Thank you for making this episode of Quietly Bohemian be well, Quietly Bohemian.

Is it over?

And that’s our first episode. A special thank you to Mallory Wisong for joining me and agreeing to interview me. And thank you for listening. Over the course of the coming weeks I want to dive in a bit deeper into some of the topics we covered today. Next week I want to look at Quietly Bohemian being for introverts, by an introvert, but it’s not about being an introvert.

If you have a moment to leave a comment or hit a rating for the show I really do appreciate it and it will help other people find the podcast. You can find out more and connect with me at my website quietlybohemian.com. Thanks again for listening.


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