Julie Parker is back on the show! We jump right into the deep end and talk about embracing the parts of yourself you don’t necessarily like, aka your shadow side, and why anyone would want to love their fears. Julie Parker is the Founder of The Beautiful You Coaching Academy where she passionately trains heart-centered people to become life coaches.
I had a list of questions prepared for Julie and we covered a few. However, when we recorded this conversation, it was in the midst of the Rachel Hollis debacle. So we veered off into a conversation about what it means to be a sacred leader and the role leadership plays within women empowerment and personal development.
In this episode you’ll hear:
- Julie talks about “embracing your shadows,” the parts of us that we don’t necessarily like and holding us back and looking at these parts compassionately and learning from them. (9:22)
- The importance of keeping a level of curiosity and tapping into it. (13:51)
- How to love your fears and why someone would want to love them. (20:53)
- Julie’s experience with people-pleasing and how she came to an understanding about it. (21:18)
- You can’t talk or think out of the way the stories you make up. (28:52)
- Julie’s book Priestess and the topic of sacred leadership. (33:58)
- What it means to be a sacred leader and the role sacred leadership plays within women's empowerment and personal development. (36:31)
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Julie on Instagram
Kate Kennedy’s podcast, Be There In Five
Amber Rae, Choose Wonder, Over Worry
Brené Brown on Power and Leadership
Episode 346: Self-Reflection and Unpacking Unconscious Biases with Leesa Renee Hall
Julie Parker is the Founder of The Beautiful You Coaching Academy where she passionately trains heart centered people to become life coaches. As the Co-Founder of Priestess Temple School, a global movement devoted to uplifting modern day Priestesses as they explore sacred leadership and service in the 21st century, Julie is committed to contributing to a world where presence, healing and social justice are honoured. She has trained with High Priestesses and Modern Day Mystery Schools from all over the world.
Julie has inspired thousands of people as an in demand speaker, sacred circle holder, priestess and flower essence practitioner, and is the recipient of numerous leadership and women’s awards. Host of the top ranking Priestess Podcast, Julie has interviewed some of the world’s great spiritual thought leaders and has a committed spiritual practice that honours her Celtic lineage, connection to the Great Mother and self.
Julie lives in Melbourne, Australia, with her husband, stepdaughter, and two much loved adopted cats.
Julie Parker 00:00
And so embracing our shadows. It's about going, okay, I'm imperfect, which makes me human. And I'm just going to lovingly look at this stuff. I'm going to work out why do I people please? What is this about? You know, why do I do this? And how can I look at it compassionately and learn from it. And so often what we find Andrea is just simply parts of ourselves that are not loved enough, not cared for enough. And once we start to do that, we begin to shift things.
You're listening to Make Some Noise Podcast Episode Number 386 with guest, Julie Parker.
Welcome to Make Some Noise Podcast. Your guide for strategies, tools and insight into empower yourself. I'm your host, Andrea Owen, global speaker, entrepreneur, life coach since 2007, an author of three books that have been translated into 18 languages and are available in 22 countries. Each week, I'll bring you a guest or a lesson that will help you maximize unshakable confidence, master resilience and make some noise in your life. You ready? Let's go.
Hey, everyone, welcome to another episode of the podcast. As always, I am so glad that you are here. It's funny, I got a message recently from a listener, a longtime listener, who also happens to be one of my clients. And she said, “You know, I'm gonna miss the old music. I'm going to miss the old intro”. And I hadn't thought that anybody would. I guess when you listen to a show for a while, and you get used to the intro and the music and certain things, it becomes comforting and like home, and I've been so excited about this new iteration of the podcast and of myself and the evolving, I sort of pushed it to the side that people would miss it. So if that's you, I hear you, and I see you, and please find comfort that the change is all good. And I also very much appreciate that you have been with me for so long, and that you like the show so much that you are going to miss the old music and the old intro. Anyway, I hope I hope you like the new one.
And we have a fantastic guest for you today. Julie Parker is a returning guest. She's been on at least once, maybe twice. And I had all these questions prepared for Julie. And when we recorded this a couple of weeks ago, it was right in the middle, it was really in the thick of what was happening over with the whole Rachel Hollis debacle. And we hadn't planned on talking about it. In fact, I was a little bit weary of having two white, two privileged white women come on, because there was also the topic of racism that was involved. And at any rate, we do end up talking about it a little bit because it was directly related to a question I had for Julie around leadership. So just giving you a heads up that we do sort of veer off into that.
And if you missed it a couple of weeks ago, I put out a bonus episode that was originally a video that I had made for everyone who is an email subscriber of mine, that I remember that a lot of you don't subscribe to my emails, and then I turned it into a podcast episode. So if you missed that, you why, you might want to go back and listen to that.
Speaking of that whole situation that happened. I was minding my own business on TikTok, which I want to talk about in just a second. And I was on the For You Page, which is accounts that you don't necessarily follow will pop up. And there was a woman who came on and was talking about this Venn diagram that she was making, and it was super interesting. And I ended up going down a little bit of a rabbit hole and followed her on Instagram and then found out that she had a podcast episode. Her name is Kate Kennedy. Some of you might listen to her show. Her show is called Be There In Five. And she does deep dives on various pop culture topics, which I find fascinating. And she has two two-hour episodes on not just what happened with Rachel Hollis. But things that are connected. And I mean, this woman is so incredibly smart and thoughtful the way she puts her episodes together again, I've only listened to this one, one show. I do recommend it. I'm going to drop that in the show notes. I have not listened to part two. As I'm recording this. It just came out and I only listened to part one.
The reason that I'm very interested in this and that I am telling you about it is that it's something I've been thinking about, I started thinking about it. Well, actually, I started thinking about it when I had a lot of questions around the teachings of the law of attraction, which I very much take what I want and leave the rest. And was questioning its validity. And not just like, does it work? But there are problems, there are problems, I had questions and started to pull away from it, mostly because I felt like it doesn't take into account so many things like privilege. And there's so many, there's so much nuance to people situations and circumstance and resources. Your but anyway, I won't get into that too much. But I started to question that pulled away from the law of attraction, had one of my colleagues start talking about, you know, white women in the wellness industry and our responsibility that was around 2015. And then really started to dive in around 2016. And the whole concept of toxic positivity, and white feminism. And this is more or less what Kate is talking about. And it's a huge problem. It's a huge problem that I have been a part of. And that I felt like it was kind of tapping me on the shoulder on the last over the last few years. And I want to make sure that I am doing what's right. And that I am constantly checking myself in terms of not just what's helpful. But what could potentially be harmful. I'm still learning. And I'm often, well I'm not often quiet. I am quiet when I really need to pull back and listen and do some research and tap in what deep within myself and lean into my values and figure out what is the next right thing.
My business values are courage, responsibility and transparency, hence having this conversation with you right now. Yeah, I just felt like Kates’ episode was, in some ways pointing the finger at me and what I do more so in like, the early, yeah, you know, like 2011 through 2015ish. And then I sort of I took a turn a little bit, but like I said, the main reason that I would encourage you to go listen to it, I think critical thinking is so important. It's so important, and learning to check in with yourself and ask yourself, okay, do I really feel empowered? When I read this person's book or listen to this person's podcast? Could I be empowered without any of this work? Am I feeling like there's something wrong with me or that I'm broken? Even though this person or this company's promise is to make me feel better or teach me to how to feel better? I think that's critical in pop culture and personal development, especially in personal development in the wellness industry. Alright, that's enough about that.
Let me let me tell you a little bit about Julie for those of you who don't know her. Julie Parker is the founder of The Beautiful You Coaching Academy where she passionately trains heart-centered people to become life coaches, as the co-founder of Priestess Temple School global movement devoted to uplifting modern-day priestesses as they explore sacred leadership and service. Julie has inspired 1000s of people as an on-demand speaker, sacred circle holder, priestess and flower essence practitioner, and is the recipient of numerous leadership and women's awards. Host of the top-ranking Priestess Podcast, Julie has interviewed some of the world's great spiritual thought leaders and has committed spiritual practice that honors her Celtic lineage connection to the great mother and self. So without further ado, here is Julie.
Julie Parker, welcome to the show.
Julie Parker 09:17
Oh, Andrea, thank you so much for having me on. I'm delighted to be back.
My favorite Australian is back on the show. And you and I go so far back, back, you were like my first Twitter friend when I was. So my kids were babies. And I was so desperate for friends. And Twitter had had only been around for a short time and I was making friends on the internet with strangers and you were one of those people. And it's been a long time and I so appreciate the work that you do in the world. And I'm so glad to have you on to talk about your book and other things and I want to jump directly into the deep end. Let's go ahead first and I want to talk about embracing your shadows, because that's something that you like to discuss. So what does that mean embracing your shadows?
Julie Parker 10:09
Yeah, well, I think that this is a very important area of our lives that we should talk about more because of the intense and beautiful and rich benefits it brings to us. But a lot of us are a little bit afraid to do that we all have a shadow. And a lot of people talk about it in terms of it being our darker side, our fearful side, the side of us that, you know, we like to keep hidden. And so it's a given then that we start to freak out about it, you know, as soon as we start to talk about it in those terms. But essentially, our shadow is the parts of us that we don't necessarily like that much that we know, hold us back, that keep us small, that challenge us deeply. And that we may therefore want to ignore or bury, so we keep it in the shadows.
So what can I ask you what an example would be like, I'm thinking, So in the 12 step programs, there's a term called, oh, character defects is what it's called.
Julie Parker 11:18
Oh, that's harsh.
I know, it's not my favorite it for sure. And there's a lot of people who, who, you know, choose to not use that language that are still affiliated with, with AA. But anyway, it's things like, like, for me, when I worked on that step, mine our selfishness and entitlement. And that's like, my shadow side. And I don't like that about me. And also, when I see it in other people, I'm like, ugh, but I think it's because I do it too, and have to be careful. So are those examples of shadows?
Julie Parker 11:55
Absolutely. They are examples of shadows, and I would be one of those persons that would not use character defects. I think that were defect is very harsh.
Julie Parker 12:06
Yeah, I wouldn't necessarily go there. But those are two fantastic examples for, um, you know, for me, one of the examples of my own shadow is at varying different times, at neediness, I can be a people pleaser, and I can be quite needy for approval. And I recognize that that is a part of my shadow, it is a part of me that, you know, is not the blooming beautiful, positive, shining side, the sides of ourselves that we can own, you know, with more confidence and love, but the thing is, is that these parts of ourselves that we might keep in the shadows, or don't like about ourselves, are still there, we can ignore them all we want, and we can deny that they don't exist. But that doesn't mean that they don't. And the more that we ignore them, and we don't open up and look at them with love and compassion, the more that they will stay hidden in those shadows. And the more that will never work with them and address them. And so embracing our shadows, is about doing just that. It's about going, Okay, I'm imperfect, which makes me human. And I'm just going to lovingly look at this stuff, I'm going to work out why do I people please What is this about? You know, why do I do this? And how can I look at it compassionately and learn from it. And so often, what we find Andrea is just simply parts of ourselves that are not loved enough, not cared for enough. And once we start to do that, we begin to shift things.
I love that. So it sounds like you help people kind of settle in on a foundation of compassion and curiosity. And what is it? Can you give us an example of like, if you had a client where you were specifically working on this, or you were working on it at a retreat? Is there an exercise that you would have people do to sort of uncover and gain some insight from their shadows?
Julie Parker 14:16
Well, I think I don't think there's one that sort of covers everything. It really does depend upon what somebody you know, is looking at, and I think that there are individual things that you know that different people do, but one of the ones I can share with you is a lot of the women that I work with sometimes hold in their shadow quite deeply. A lot of comparisonitis, a lot of comparing behaviors to others. And one of the exercises that I get them to do or explore is just simply journaling around that and getting them to write about. I find is often very powerful, what they consider the link to be between comparison, not comparisonitis, comparing themselves to others, and procrastination. And a lot of women look at me when I sit and go, Well, they're two completely different things. They don't they don't have anything to do with each other. And I go, no, I really want you to think about this and explore it deeper. And I've got some key questions. I don't have them with me right now. But basically, you know, to cut to the chase, what a lot of women that I work with find out in relation to that particular thing in their shadow, is that comparing themselves constantly to other people, whether it be their body, their bank account, their business, is an absolutely magnificent form of procrastination. Because as long as they are doing that, and more invested in looking at the lives and businesses and careers and parenting of someone else, they then completely distract themselves from themselves. And it stops them in their tracks. And they start to spin their wheels. And they don't have to do as much, or they can't do as much because of the time that they're investing there. And so that uncovers some fears about being in action and stepping forward, and you know, all of those sorts of things. It's not necessarily just a self-esteem thing. It's actually an action that people engage in, because it allows them to just be safe, and to remain where they are. And so it becomes about busting out of that.
That's an exhausting place to be. And I've been there.
Julie Parker 16:52
It can be. Yeah, absolutely. It can be for sure. Not easy. This work is not easy.
Yes, it's, it's exhausting. And it's, it's one of those things, too, that I think happens so often in different areas of our lives. So you know, if somebody whether she owns her own business, and compares that to somebody else, or works for a corporation and compares to her, her coworker, or relationships is a big one. Body and appearance is a huge one. Art, parenting you mentioned, it's just, it's never-ending. And what I I like to offer the same piece of advice actually is is just and you, you threw out a bunch of questions to a few minutes ago, that you know, people can skip back and listen to those again and use those as journal prompts. And I just, I am obsessed with curiosity, it has saved me from so so many rabbit holes of negative self-talk. So instead of comparing myself to Julie Parker's business, I would stop and say like, I wonder why I feel the need to compare myself. I wonder, I wonder what stories I'm making up based on someone else's life? About my own life?
Julie Parker 18:17
Yeah, exactly. All the layers of things that we take on and that aren't even ours to own. And I completely agree with you, Andrea, that curiosity is one of the things that allows us as human beings to peel back those layers. It is underrated. Curiosity in our lives. It is.
Yes. And it's one of those things too, that in my experience when you are more curious and just wonder rather than coming to conclusions and making up stories about things and beating yourself up, that it takes the attachment out of it. It's just like I had, one of my trainers when I was at the Coaches Training Institute many years ago. They said they use the metaphor of going into your walk-in closet or your regular closet with a flashlight and it's totally dark and you're peeking in all the pockets. What are you going to find? You're going to find a $20 bill, a lipstick, just some lint like you don't know like it could be anything and it's so much easier to me and it's become a habit now just curiosity that I would so much rather walk down that path than the path of jumping to conclusions. And as somebody who struggles with anxiety, that is an easy place to go. To many problems.
Julie Parker 19:44
Yes, absolutely are all of those things that you say are just incredibly powerful, and they do link back to curiosity and it's one of those things that within the self-help and personal development industry that I don't think is spoken about enough in relation to the power that it can bring you, you know, one of the core tenants in our life coaching academy that we teach new and upcoming life coaches is to remain curious about yourself and your clients, as a core tenant, because as soon as you lose that you absolutely are not as good a coach, there's no question in my mind about that, because you start making assumptions about people, you start saying, oh, she's a mom of three children, she doesn't have time for that. Or he's a man, he won't feel as emotionally connected to his goals as that other client, you know, that's what we begin to do when we tap out of our curiosity. And so tapping into that is, ah, it's so vital for a loving, compassionate life too.
It is, I had Amber Rae on the podcast, and she wrote a book, choose, or sorry, Choose Wonder Over Worry. And we'll pop that link in the show notes. I want to ask you about, let's talk about fear, because who doesn't struggle with fear from time to time. You teach women how to love their fears. So why would someone want to love their fears? Like what's the lesson in that?
Julie Parker 21:18
Well, I think this is very connected to embracing your shadow, because it , our fears have so much to teach us. You know, they can be a loving guide, and a portal to brilliance and awareness and openness and action in so many different ways, if we're prepared to go there. And so we have to connect with ourselves deeply enough, like ourselves deeply enough, love ourselves deeply enough even, to be able to go, okay, I'm not going to ignore that constant fear. More often than not, that's made up in my own mind, you know, we're not talking about tigers chasing you down the street. We're talking about constructs of our own mind fears that say, I'm not good enough to do that, I will fail if I do that, I will be criticized wretchedly if I try, I'm not as good at that, like everybody else, you know, all of those sorts of things. And it comes back to going, okay, no, I'm going to stop and breathe into this. And I know that unsafe and I'll be okay, just exploring it, you know, even to begin with. And so we have to have the courage to go there. And then find out what these things are telling us.
Like, I know, for example, for me, when I began to address my people-pleasing and neediness after years of being fearful of looking at that stuff, because of the stories that I told myself about it, and myself, as a result, as soon as I started to do that, this whole world and portal of sovereignty, and sacred leadership began to open up for me and independence as a woman to and realizing that I didn't need permission from other people to do certain things that I wanted in my life, that I didn't need to be praised all the time, for something to feel good. And for something to be right for me. And they're just two examples of that. And I would never have known those things if I hadn't decided to just okay, I'm just going to love myself through this. I'm going to work my way through this. And I'm going to look at these fears and the deeper meaning of what's going on underneath them. And as soon as I started to do that, portals opened up, and newness opened up for me around what it meant for me to be whole healing, you know, humane woman. It's not to say any of it's easy. It's not but loving our fears and giving them a chance, you know, giving ourselves a chance to really look at them for what they're trying to tell us is life-changing.
I've never heard it spoken about that way. And you know, if someone said like, who's the person on your podcast that you think would talk about this like you would be at the top of the list? Probably really, Parker, but I love it. It's so fascinating. And I love to hear different perspectives, or especially around the bigger topics that are just universal to people and I just like I want to go down a side road for a second and ask you about your people-pleasing because I'm curious it because it sounds like you've worked on it a lot. And it's been, you know, one of the main themes in your life, and were you able to find out the connection to it? And if you wouldn't mind sharing, like you know, where do you think it stemmed from in your lives? I know a lot of people listening struggle with people-pleasing as well.
Julie Parker 25:03
Yeah, I absolutely was able to, without any shadow of a doubt, and I think I probably always knew that it was there. But again, just didn't have the courage or the love for myself enough to stop and breathe into it and look at it. But my people-pleasing stemmed from a very faulty belief. And I know that a lot of women have it as well, a lot of people have it that if I was just nice enough, did enough for other people was good enough, you know, helpful enough, all of those sorts of things that everybody would love me. And that would mean that I would never have any conflict, I would never have any difficult or challenging relationships, because why would I because everybody would love me, and I would love them and everything would be okay. And this stemmed from being a child of essentially an abandoned father, at a very young age. My father left our family home in very sudden circumstances when I was four years old, and my sister was one at the time. And essentially, I only saw him a handful of times, like, you know, literally less than five. From that day on until he passed, which is about 18 months ago now. And so, I grew up in a very loving, strong, amazingly connected family with a single mother, but also living in an intergenerational family with grandparents. And so I had a grandfather, father figure, but there was clearly something unresolved for me that went on for many, many years, about not having my dad's love, and, and thinking that that was due to me, I internalized that I blamed myself, and thought, well, I wasn't a good enough girl, I wasn't a good enough daughter. This then stemmed into other relationships with men, I found myself in my early 20s, throughout that phase, and my mid-20s, as well, often in very one-sided relationships, I cared for and loved them a great deal more than they did me: classic people-pleasing. I had issues with female friendships at that time as well.
And so it wasn't until I recognized that this was what was going on, and that it was playing out as people-pleasing in many other areas of my life when I had the courage to really look at it, that I was able to address it and stop it. And I, yes, I had some therapy around it. But really, it was about coming to the realization of it and going, Well, isn't that just ridiculous Julie. Like honestly, like, let's just look at this first. Second, it had nothing to do with you, you will, four years old, you where a child is nothing but you've internalized that in some way you did, ideally internalize it. And then as soon as I knew the silliness of that story, the ridiculousness of that story that I was taking on, I was able to start to break it down with lots of compassion, curiosity, love, all of that sort of stuff and go, Oh, hang on a second. This is ridiculous. And of course, coming to the complete understanding that we can never get everybody to like us. That is impossible. And by the way, we don't want everyone to like us, I'm in some way that you just you don't want anyone. And so coming to that conclusion was very empowering as well.
That's so interesting. And I'm sure that there are people listening, who see parallels and, in your story, so I appreciate you sharing that.
And I want to, I want to touch on something. And because I had a similar experience, and I've talked to my audience about the pretty intense trauma therapy that I went through last year and a little bit into 2021, I ended with my therapist, and I had after many sessions with her because we were talking about worthiness, and I, and she does muscle testing too. So she can tell about these, like subconscious beliefs that we have, and the worthiness wasn't the issue. And I could, I could honestly tell her that I felt like even sub, subconsciously, I have a healthy dose of worthiness, like sure there are times every once in a while, where I get a little shaky there, but for the most part, I'm grateful that I've done enough work where I feel good about that, but there was something else. And it was sort of random. We were talking about my family of origin and I said you don't remember what exactly it was that I said, and I started crying. And I said, I just feel like, I have this unconscious belief that nobody really cares about me. And I was like, oh my god, that's what it like in my whole body was, it just was such a strange experience.
But logically, as you said, I knew that was ridiculous. Like, of course, my husband, and my mom and my sister and my best friend and my children like there, there are a good amount of people that truly care about me and my well-being and all these things, but it was deeply embedded into my core into my cells. And I say that because I find it very interesting that on a practical, logical, almost surface level, we can understand that our, quote, unquote, stories are dumb. But they're still there. Yeah. And I think that can be so frustrating for people. And the point I'm trying to make is that you can't talk your way and think your way out of that. And I know you do a lot of deeper work with your, with your priestess work. And it took somatic therapy for me to be able to start to release that. And it was difficult and uncomfortable and weird. And weird. I am not, I am skeptical of that kind of stuff. And oh, man, it was rough. But it was worth it. And I just want to emphasize that to people that if they're still if they're like, I logically know that I'm worthy, and I'm worthy of love. But it's like this deep down. Go find a somatic therapist, trauma therapist.
Julie Parker 31:50
Yeah, different things work for different people. Right. Very, very true. And we know, of course, that we store trauma in the body. Right? And so for many of us, what the past that you're suggesting someone opened themselves up to their Andrea is a really sound one. And it's one that often people don't necessarily think about because they think it's all about the words and the thoughts and the processes. And that can be a very, very significant part of it. But there is no question that what you're saying, for some people that release through the body is the missing link.
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Well, I want to shift over and talk about your book, which is called Priestess: Ancient Spiritual Wisdom for Modern Sacred Women. And I know there are various topics in there. And I would love for you to talk to us about sacred leadership.
Julie Parker 33:58
Well, this is such a core tenant of the book because essentially, I consider being a priestess to be a modern spiritual sacred leader. She is somebody that holds deep space for other people more often than not other women. And in particular, that space is there to help someone see their own divinity, see their own light and beauty, and allow them to be able to create the life that on a spiritual path is most aligned for them, which of course looks different for all of us.
And so when I think about sacred leadership, Andrea, I just this is a topic that is just lighting me up so deeply right now because I feel as though it doesn't take a lot to look around the world and realize that the type of leadership that we almost have being force-fed constantly, is very much not within the sacred realms. It's very white, it's male, it's hierarchical, i's patriarchally infused, it's top-down. And it does very little, to really see people, and children and animals and the environment as interconnected, vital, sacred beings that contribute so deeply to our way of life. And so anything that breaks down those paradigms and really uplifts sacred leaders that are all about, in particular, seeing how their thoughts and actions, impact their lives, and the lives of other people is absolutely key here. It's about how do I make sure that every decision that I make as a parent, as a partner, as a leader, as a business owner if we are one, how can I make sure that that has a positive impact on people closest to me and the wider world as much as I can. And if people keep those thoughts, forefront, to their mind and really thinking about those things, then they're absolutely beginning to step into a sacred leadership space. And boy, do we need that right now?
I think it’s so beautiful, how you talked about that I was taking notes, because I was like, I love all these words that you're using around leadership. And, and I don't want people to think that, you know, you have to be an entrepreneur or have a podcast or a blog, or a large social media following to be a leader. No you are leaders in your homes, in your communities, and your job it those of you who are mothers, like I think that personally, all the women in my community are leaders, whether they are whether they identify as that or not, I'm like, I'm just gonna put that label on you. No, I'm kidding.
But I just do think that that leadership is so important. And I'm obsessed with Brené Brown, and she talks about leadership. And I've mentioned this in another podcast episode she did. I think it was in her interview with, with Joe Biden, like even before the election, but that's that wasn't the greatest part about it. But she was talking about power. I don't know if you caught it, Julie, but there's a PDF that you can google if you just Google, Brené Brown power, power over versus power within. And she gives such great examples of leadership and power over versus power within. And it's such a huge contrast. And I also love that you brought up how I think, especially when we're talking about if you kind of shrink it down a little bit into our industry, and the work that we do in women's empowerment. And it is like you said it's it's very white, it's very, there's a certain kind of image of what it needs to look like. And there are some examples of it not being done. Well.
And you and I chatted before we started recording and like, should we talk about this? Should we not talk about this? Let's be really candid. As we're recording this, this will come out a few weeks afterwards. But Rachel Hollis, for those of you that aren't familiar with her, she is a very well-known author and speaker and entrepreneur in the wellness space. And her first self-help book exploded, sold millions of copies. And she messed up not for the first time online and talk to me about and this is not to bash her at all. Like that's not what we're going to do. Everyone's human, everyone makes mistakes. But I would love for us to talk about that and how it relates to sacred leadership, in your opinion.
Julie Parker 39:14
Yeah, well, thank you for qualifying that, Andrea, because Rachel, and the example of her behavior, which is unfolding right now, is just one of many women, in particular, I'm going to call it white women in this space of the personal development, wellness, spiritual industries, that has exhibited harmful and hurtful behavior before and it won't be the last example there will be many more to come. And which is a shame that I think we know from past experience that it's likely to continue in many ways because for some people, the past takes longer to get. And I guess one of the things that we're seeing unfold here is that an example of not taking responsibility for one's own actions and behaviors and the impact that those actions and behaviors have had, and are having and how hurtful they are. This is something that sacred leaders do not do. When they screw up when they make a mistake, when they do something wrong, when they cause harm, which let's face it, all of us have done yeah, before, right…
I call it stepping and shit, you say…
Julie Parker 40:46
Right! Okay. But we have all done this, I have done this before I have been called out I have been called in. And I am sure that I will be again, this is not personal, it is just simply the very large example that many of us are witnessing unfold right now. And sacred leaders, when these things happen, do not blame anyone else. They do not deflect, they do not throw other people under the bus. They do not try and minimize it. And this is where seeing all of the above ABCD, and probably a lot more.
If you want to be a sacred leader, and really take responsibility for the impact that you have in life, you will own everything that you do. And this comes right back to the shadow stuff that you asked me about at the top of this interview. Andrea, that is you are prepared to honor, look at, pull apart, love, be curious about, dissect, work on fix, look at, work your way through all aspects of yourself. That's exactly right. You're not just there for everything that someone praises you about. You're not just there in an echo chamber, you don't just surround yourself with ‘yes folk’. And dive after all the hearts and the loves and the positive comments. You look at all the stuff that is also not right and in the shadow and barking at you and needing to be cared for and looked at. Because at an even deeper level. That's the stuff you need to look at even more because it's causing harm to others, which ultimately in the end is causing harm to you. That's what really amazing sacred leaders do. They're not afraid to get in, as you said the shit, they're not afraid to get in their mark, and look at this and go, I want to be better. I want to do better. I don't want to cause harm. And this is not easy work. But it is even more necessary when you have a huge platform. And you are influencing people in the way that Rachel is. And let's hope that happens.
I hope so too. I'm always eternally optimistic. But you know, last year, you named all those things. And there was also a diversion, when she was called out for speaking out about, you know, what is your stance around racism and Black Lives Matter. And then she decides to announce her divorce. And I just, I was so disappointed then that, that she created that diversion. And this is not to say, divorce, you know, divorce is terrible. I've been through one, it was one of the worst times of my life. And that woman is probably going through some stuff right now. And also, life still happens. And you own this huge, you have a huge community that you are responsible for.
And I also want to just point to one thing. And I know you'll appreciate this and understand what I'm talking about, Julie, is that one of the reasons I hesitated to talk about this is because I thought to myself, maybe two white women to privileged white women shouldn't come and talk about something like this because it points to exceptionalism. And that is what exceptionalism is, for those that don't know, at Leesa Renee Hall was on my show, and I'll put that link in the show notes. I've learned so much from her. She's a race educator, she's so fantastic. But it's when white people get together and they talk about things and in this case, it's race issues and in order to look better than other white people. And I have to be very careful of that. I have done it before and don't want to do it. And so I just want to call that out for what it is.
And I also want to say like this is, I want to underscore what you said, in this is largely what white women do. And I think part of the reason that just was a gut punch when I saw what Rachel's behavior was that I have done things like that, before, you know, she posted this apology, and it was the very last slide where she said something like, I apologize for misquoting her, but I'll try to get it as close as I can. She said, ‘I should have listened to my gut instead of to my team, I should have posted sooner rather than believing them when they said it would all blow over’. And I was and I thought to myself, that is manipulative to make yourself look like the victim. And I know that because I've done it, where you're you're trying to take response look like you're taking responsibility, like, ‘oh, I really am a good person. They were the ones that made me do it’. Do you know what I mean? It was and it was contemptuous like the video there was just so yeah, I have I have such a value around responsibility.
And I also want to underscore the part where you talked about how uncomfortable it is. And when I thought when you were describing the work that needs to happen. For her or any leader who behaves that way. My stomach started to hurt and my armpits started to tingle. That is a secondhand shame. I am such an empath my face got hot, I was like, oh my gosh, I've been in that place where it is. I'll just gonna say it is diarrhea-inducing. It’s so uncomfortable. Like, of course, you don't want to look at it. Like who does. And I think I can speak for so many white people like we are fragile. We are not used to this. And it's okay, I'm gonna, I'm gonna stop talking. I'm like….
Julie Parker 46:56
Everything that you say is the truth. And yes, we are fragile. And this is challenging and difficult. But it's even more reason that we does.
It is necessary.
Julie Parker 47:10
And you know, Andrea, everything that you say about white exceptionalism is very true. And that's why I'm glad that we've spoken to the fact that neither you nor I are perfect, or even exemplary, or even okay, in this realm, we have screwed up here before and we will do so again. I also think that these conversations are important between white people as well. Because I just feel so deeply for black, brown, indigenous and people of color that are constantly needing to clean up, or trying to clean up the mess that is left behind in circumstances such as this, and we've got to do some of the heavy lifting there, too. You know, we yeah, so there is a fine line between all of this. And you're right, it is uncomfortable, and it's difficult. But essentially, if we want to change the paradigm of leadership in the world right now, it absolutely involves looking at people that are in very influential leadership positions already, and calling them to account.
Now, some people get very nervous when I use language like that and think, oh, it's all about canceled culture and ripping people apart. And so it's not that at all, it's about saying, and reflecting back to people, this is harmful, this is hurtful. And you do not blame your team or other people when you make a mistake, right? If you want to be a sacred, divine, uplifting leader in this realm, you will not do that. And you will show other people that you have the courage to take full responsibility for your actions and what you will do to get better at it. And better at everything that this is connected to. What is there's no harm there. There's no shame there. It might feel shameful. But there's a big difference between something feeling that way. And it's stopping someone from moving forward. And it actually being that is a big, big, big difference.
There's a big difference between holding somebody accountable and shaming them, which I think is you know, people are confused by that. And no one's ever died from a hard conversation or looking at their shadow side and um, becoming a better leader. It's, it's necessary and I think we as leaders have a response, and I commented on both of her posts and that was part of what I I said, as I said, you have a responsibility to your community to get better, to behave better and clean up the mess.
And, and I also take that particular situation personally because she represents our industry and women's empowerment specifically. And I, I take personal offense. Yeah, that behavior. I mean, again, everybody makes mistakes, I have screwed up royally before here on this podcast on social media, etc. And it is all about cleaning up your mess. And it's there is no excuse nowadays, for you can google how to make a proper public apology, there are countless YouTube videos, blog posts, articles, etc. about how to do it. It's very, it's not complicated, it's uncomfortable, but it's not complicated, and that was missed. And so I just I appreciate your work around leadership, it's a big responsibility. I just wanted to say this, my friend, Sarah Dean says, there's a difference between a marketer and a leader. And so pick who you follow wisely.
Julie Parker 51:14
All that is so powerful. And you're right, Andrea, and I think that this is one of the greatest areas, even though it might feel only small that we can have an impact in. And that is to be incredibly conscious of the so-called leaders, and influences and marketers and folks on social media and elsewhere, that you are allowing your eyes, your mind, your heart, your soul, to view and be impacted by every day. Because the choices that you make, in that realm influence the type of person that you become.
Mm-hmm. Exactly. Thank you for being so eloquent and kind around that. And is there anything that you wanted to circle back to that you feel like you want to say before we close it down? And also where can people find more of you?
Julie Parker 52:15
Oh, look, you know, I just feel called to say that there is a sacred leader inside all of us. And we need that leader to come out so desperately right now. For the love, the compassion, the sacredness that we need in the world, and to uplift us and keep us moving forward in incredible ways. And for all our children and children's children after us. We need a new paradigm, a new way here in so many different ways. And that starts with all of us. So thank you so much for having me on Andrea, I really appreciate it and people can find me at JulieSuzanneParker.com.
Julie Suzanne Parker that link will be in the show notes, as well as your Instagram, handles. And thank you so much for being here. You are a delight, always. And everyone thanks you so much for your time. I appreciate it. And I'm so grateful that you choose to spend it with me and my guests. And remember, it's our life's journey to make ourselves better humans and our life's responsibility to make the world a better place. Bye, everyone.