Did you know that childhood and workplace trauma may actually impact the way that you’re running your business today?

Today I’m speaking with licensed clinical social worker and business therapist, Nicole Keeber, about burnout, hustle, and trauma responses in relation to your business.

With 16 years of experience as a therapist, Nicole now works with entrepreneurs to help them create mindset practices and build healthy relationships with her business while working to break the stigma of mental health within business ownership.

In this episode we talk about the way trauma (especially childhood trauma) can impact the way you structure your business and the way you interact with your clients and team. And there are many ways in which this trauma can manifest – whether that be in money, marketing, or social media.

We attempt to answer the questions:

  • How we can be more trauma conscious as entrepreneurs?
  • How can we let go of the codependent relationship we have with social media?
  • How can we teach ourselves to become better – more inclusive – when we’re creating content?
  • How can we build a healthy relationship with our businesses?

If you’re feeling codependent on social media for your business or you’re stuck in an unhealthy relationship with one (or multiple) aspect/s of your businesses, this episode is for you.

Content advisory: This episode mentions the idea of how trauma can impact the way you run your business (no specific details are shared). If this is a difficult topic for you, you may want to skip this episode. We hope that you will make an informed decision on whether or not this episode may be beneficial to you.

Read the full transcript

Meg Casebolt 0:01
You’re listening to social slowdown a podcast for entrepreneurs and micro businesses looking for sustainable marketing strategies without being dependent on social media. Social media is a double edged sword. It’s a wonderful way to stay connected. But it also can feel like an addictive obligation. And it’s even more complex for businesses, your audience might be right there, but you’ve got to fight with algorithms to maybe be seen by them. So whether you want to abandon social media altogether, or you just want to take a month off, it’s possible to have a thriving business without being dependent on social media. This podcast is all about finding creative, sustainable ways to engage with your audience without needing to lip-sync, send cold DMS, run ads or be available 24/7. Let’s get started.

Welcome back to the social slowdown Podcast. Today I am having a fantastic conversation with Nicole Lewis keeper. If you don’t already know, Nicole, she is a licensed clinical social worker. And she’s also she calls herself a business therapist, because she specifically works with entrepreneurs to help them to create really great mindset practices and to build healthy relationships with their businesses. And she’s working very hard to break the stigma of mental health within business ownership. So Nicole, and I spend this conversation talking all about how trauma, especially childhood trauma can impact the way that you structure your business, the way that you’re visible to a larger community, the way that you interact with your clients and your team. I do want to give a bit of a content acknowledgement. We talked to after we finished recording and I said you shouldn’t Should I give a trigger warning here. And she’s like, it’s not really there shouldn’t be much in here that is triggering, we don’t go into a lot of detail about how trauma shows up. We don’t tell any stories about traumatic situations. But I do want to give a an acknowledgement to start off this podcast that we talk about the idea of childhood trauma and the the idea of abusive relationships. We again, we don’t go into details, but I want you to be able to make an informed decision about whether or not this conversation is something that would be beneficial to you. If you don’t think it is that’s okay, you can skip this week, we will be back with future episodes about mental health and social media and online marketing and all the ways that you can use it sustainably in a way that makes sense to you, and helps you to build a financially stable business. So without further ado, here is my conversation with Nicole Lewis keeper. Hello, hello, Nicole, I am so excited to have you on the social slowdown podcast. I feel like this is a topic that you and I have been talking about for so long. And now we finally get to record it. So thank you for being here with me. Oh, gosh,

Nicole Keeber 2:54
thank you for having me.

Meg Casebolt 2:57
So I wanted to bring you on this is a month where we’re talking a lot about mental health and self care and what it feels like to be an entrepreneur promoting ourselves and trying to hold boundaries and figure out how we can use our time and energy most effectively. And so I wanted to bring you into this conversation because of your background of working with entrepreneurs, helping them build businesses that that feel good and that they work well within. So I’d love if you can give a bit of background to our listeners about what it is that you do and how you help people.

Nicole Keeber 3:35
Cool. Thanks. So my background is I have a master’s degree in in social work. I’m a licensed clinical social worker, and I was a therapist for 18 years before starting my own business, to work with small business owners, entrepreneurs and leaders. And I started out doing money mindset coaching initially, and then begin to see this thread that was running through the people I was working with, that they had childhood trauma impacting their money, their business, the way that they operated within it. And I got curious about it and started to do some more research on it. And went through experience myself the first few years of my own business where I recognize that I was really creating a an abusive relationship with my business. I was creating a business that was not supportive to me, let’s just put it that way. And so I got curious again about why is it that we do this, you know, we were creating this business to provide ourselves with some kind of freedom. Yes, some kind of resource, something to help us feel safe, stable and secure. And yet we kind of default in these patterns with making it you know, really problematic and toxic at times. And so that’s the research and work that I’ve been doing for the past five years is first of all exploring the impact of childhood trauma and entrepreneurship and how it impacts us, as well as working with people in you know, one on one settings and in some group programs to explore how we can be more trauma conscious as entrepreneurs To help ourselves, you do no harm to ourselves as well as the people that we’re working with, because you are not your business. So there’s something outside of you that you’re relating to and that you’re creating, and it has impact on other people. So,

Meg Casebolt 5:13
yeah, I feel like when I first started my business, it was very much like, because I had been in a workplace, I wanted to replicate that workplace environment, and a lot of the messaging around starting your own businesses, like Be your own boss. And so I was taking those patterns that I’d seen from my bosses of needing to show up in a certain way at a certain time, and then applying them to myself when they weren’t necessarily not even like they weren’t necessary. They weren’t actually beneficial. Right? Like the the inner critic, Voice of the the boss that was kind of a jerk continued to play in my brain even

Nicole Keeber 5:48
when he wasn’t my boss anymore, because I was still trying to meet the expectations of what it looks like to work for him versus what is it that I want to get out of this? Right? That’s so layered, right? Because when we think about, I’m going to throw around the word trauma a lot today. So we think about we’ve had experiences that you created, you know, it felt like a traumatic experience to us, what happens is that later on, we then tend to recreate those patterns in some ways. And so we leave these toxic work environments with these bosses that don’t know how to support us, you know, they’re under their own pressure to try and get some relief. But what do we do? Often, we then recreate the pattern we were trying to escape, and people feel really bad about I’m like, listen, that’s a trauma pattern. It’s okay. It’s what happens, you know, it’s all right. Once you know better, you do better. And we end up recreating those kind of I call it your main boss, like you, we are our own boss. And so are you being kind to yourself? Or are you being just as you know, demanding as the person that you were trying to escape?

Meg Casebolt 6:52
Right. And and I think there’s also you said, you know, you started from a money mindset perspective, and I think there’s also a lot of money trauma that shows up and shows up even more when, when you are an entrepreneur. So you know, when I was at my, my former jobs, it was like, Well, this is the amount of money that I make, and therefore this is the value that I have in the world. And this is what my hourly rate should be. And I don’t expect my business to give me more than that. Because my as my value has already been established, and, and there’s a lot of really like gross junk that goes on in our heads because of these patterns that have been established, whether it’s in childhood or previous employment. What are some of those, like, common patterns that you see in terms of the ways that people set up their businesses, that may not be the best benefit to them? Long term?

Nicole Keeber 7:41
Yeah, well, we have other people telling us what we’re worth. And we don’t question it just makes it so easier to get that paycheck, right? When we have to put $1 sign on what we how we value ourselves, all bets are off. And so money is definitely one of the first, you know, places that I see this play out. And because of how, let’s just say the systems around us play a big role in how we are allowed to view ourselves and our value. Right, and it’s really heavily indoctrinated into us no matter. Like I went to social work, and I took a vow of poverty to go into. But I didn’t I never questioned it, it was not something I questioned because the messaging was so heavy, not just internally in my family about money, but also with the social work department, they tell us what you will get paid, right? So there was no question of that. And so it just kind of slipped into those patterns of like, this is the only way that I can value myself and I cannot, I cannot reach for something more. So money is one of the biggest ways that I see, you know, childhood trauma. And you know, those patterns show up for us as business owners because we are having to put a value on ourselves personally, and you could have been the best salesperson like top 1% and sales at your company. But when you leave there and then have to sell yourself and navigate what those values look like for you. It’s really hard when you’ve had other people telling you what you’re worth your whole life. And so I’d say money’s a big one.

Meg Casebolt 9:20
Absolutely. And then when it comes to in this you know this podcast specifically we’re talking all about marketing and finding yourself online and showing up and I know you and I have talked before about how difficult it can be for people to show up and kind of not even like figure out how to message yourself but more like how to show up and be authentic and show up as yourself when you do have experience of not feeling value for yourself or not feeling supported or you know having having a traumatic you know whether it’s these you Oh, you taught me like big T trauma of like traumatic events that are like game changes in your life. versus little T traumas of like things that just kind of didn’t. They, they were small, but consistent traumas are happening to you. And so there could be people out there who are like, you know, I’ve been, you know, I have been assaulted, and I don’t want to show my face on the internet because I don’t want to like relive some of that or have somebody come and find me. And those are kind of the responses of big T trauma. But then there’s also a lot of like, self awareness and self concept in the little T trauma way of like, I don’t want to put my face on the internet, because I don’t like the way my body looks right now. You know, and like, there’s, there’s a lot that goes into our marketing that can be influenced by those previous patterns. So talk to me about kind of the, the way that trauma impacts how we show up in our businesses.

Nicole Keeber 10:47
Yeah, so marketing, you know, I would put that under the category of visibility. And visibility can be challenging for us are you if you have if someone’s perception of you has been problematic for you in your past, meaning that you being in their line of sight, made it feel unsafe, made you unsafe, you know, or you were the person that people picked on, you know, because we’re they’re an easy target. And so we’re asking you to then go put your face out there to market yourself and you know, be as visible as you can as a business owner. Because it’s your business right? To do this. And it can bring up a lot of nervous system responses of feeling unsafe, or that you might be the target of something of bullying. And so we’re asking to do something from a logical standpoint to promote your business that your nervous system hasn’t caught up to yet. And so I think that’s why it’s important for us to recognize that if you’ve had these experiences, and someone tells you just do with me, or just do just write an article, just do a video, just do just whatever. And you say, why can’t I do this? Why can’t I do this? Why can’t I do this, because your nervous system is still operating in this trauma experience that you’re having. And doing the thing that person’s asking you to do does not feel safe, you know, at a nervous system level. And so honestly, I see the visibility, piece of marketing, being as challenging as the money piece for a lot of people I work with, they can do a lot of other facets within the business, but the marketing piece really hard for them.

Meg Casebolt 12:24
Yeah, there’s a lot of a lot of value and like, being able to explain yourself clearly. And if even if it’s just like I have, I have a bad experience as a kid at doing public speaking. And then I’m asked to show up and lead a webinar that can be really troublesome for us. And and we don’t always make that correlation of oh, this happened to me in my sophomore year of high school, and people laughed when I was reading to the class. And now it’s impacting me, you know, in my 30s 40s 50s, because it really was a milestone important experience that I haven’t dealt with, like you said, I had a nervous system level.

Nicole Keeber 13:01
Yeah, being perceived by people you do not know. Regardless of whether it’s online, in person at a cop, wherever being perceived by people that you do not know, brings your nervous system online through in a threat response. If you are someone who has a trauma background, you’re just being perceived by people.

Meg Casebolt 13:24
Yeah, that’s really interesting. And that like kind of fight or flight response, the adrenaline, the cortisol all kind of kicks in to say, something could happen here. That panicky moment. And they’re may actually. And your brain can say like, No, this is fine. I’m at a conference, I’m just meeting people, what’s the big deal, but in the back of your head? If you haven’t worked through the nervous system and stuff? Yeah, you’re right. Like it could, it could be really problematic and keep you from it could hold you back from certain opportunities because of it. Yeah.

Nicole Keeber 13:58
Yep, exactly. And I see this a lot, you know, and so one of the things that I think we hear a lot around marketing is put yourself out there everywhere. And that doesn’t necessarily work. Always do even from a strategy point. But also from a nervous system standpoint. So, you know, getting to really know what marketing looks like for you to feel safe and secure and to feel like it, you know, it makes sense to you and that you recognize that this way of marketing myself, will require me to use more energy to try and manage my nervous system, as opposed to this other way of marketing myself that feels a little bit more in line with how I feel safe and the energy expansion I have to give right now because we are all low energy. Yeah, that makes a big difference. Because when you think about marketing as a category, there are so many ways to do it. You know, when I talk to my clients, we’re talking about how you know trauma can show up in their money and how they manage their employees and trust this marketing of umbrellas big though. Because you’re it’s so many different things just within that. So it is so overwhelming. And I think it’s where people get stuck a lot when they have, you know, these experiences. Yeah,

Meg Casebolt 15:11
it’s so funny to hear you say like, thinking about your marketing and putting yourself out there from an energy perspective, because you know, me is like the analytical person, I’m like, Let’s track let’s see, let’s like, like, get the UTM parameter campaigns in place. So that way we can know what you’re putting out there and how people are reacting to it, and how they’re engaging with your content. And I’m playing this, like, track numbers tracking game, but the energy management piece of Yeah, even. And a lot of people, I hear so many people saying, like, I hate doing video. And now I’m being told that I have to be on Instagram. And I have to do video because that’s what the algorithms prioritizing. And I hate it. And I know there are just some people who hate it. But some of that, like resistance might not be, Oh, you don’t want to do this, there could be something that’s, you know, from your childhood, or something that feels unsettled for you. And you feel like you have to push through it, even though you don’t want to do it. And my reaction to that, as the analytical person is like, well, then find a different platform, don’t do video, if you don’t want to do video, like find somewhere else to connect with people. But now as I’m hearing you talk about it, I’m like, maybe the answer is like, recognize the reason why something like, video doesn’t feel good. It might be some of that self confidence piece. Or it might be you know, you had somebody perceive you in a certain way on video, and you don’t want to set yourself up for like opening that door to criticism again. Knowing why it’s difficult, and either choosing to work through that in some way. Or to say, okay, that’s just not me. That’s okay. Right? Yeah. And

Nicole Keeber 16:57
here’s the beauty, dare I say about recognizing how, you know, those childhood experiences that we’ve had? And I say childhood a lot, because those are developmental years, right. That’s where our self concept and our nervous system, it’s where it comes online, right? So there’s beauty in recognizing, like, first of all these experiences do impact us in our business, because there’s so many people walking around thinking, you know, we just drop everything at the door, we start a business and none of that comes with us. We’re asked to do that at work to, you know, something we’re trained to do. But the beauty of recognizing this is, then you can ask yourself, those questions you can go into self inquiry of like is this, do I not want to do this because this is just new for me, and it doesn’t feel comfortable. The first time someone asked me to do public speaking in front of my first coaching group ever that I was in as a participant, and I had to stand up and do a three second or 3/32 pitch in front of the group, like I was hostile. I was like, stupid, you know, I don’t want to do it, you know, and now I’ve done keynotes in front of 350 people, it was something that I didn’t feel comfortable doing because I had not done it. So I was resistant, because that is a normal thing to feel around something that feels like kind of new and sketchy. But we’re able to ask ourselves, like, is this this? And is it something I want to work through and kind of master? Or am I recognizing that this shuts down my nervous system that, you know, this makes me feel unsafe in a way that I cannot bring myself around to manage? So I’m going to choose another way to market my ourselves. But when we are not asking those questions, what do we do we just keep hearing, you should do this. And we keep trying to plow through a make ourselves do something and then we burn ourselves out. And we just kind of blast our nervous system. So that’s the beauty of being able to ask yourself, what is this? Why do I feel this way? Where have I felt this way before? Can I work through this? Or do I need to choose another path?

Meg Casebolt 18:54
Is there a good question that you could ask yourself or like, maybe not a framework, but some some prompts that you would ask people if you were trying to come up with like, is this something I’m uncomfortable with or fearful of? Versus is this something that throws my nervous system off and isn’t beneficial for me to work through? Like how do you know if it’s something that you should work through? versus something that you should just like not to say abandon, but like just choose not to engage with how do you know what, whether or not to work through something?

Nicole Keeber 19:26
That’s a good question. So I think that in the moment, if you can be present, to ask yourself that question to say, you know, because our inner critic, that voice that’s connected to these, you know, experiences that we had is going to come online and it’s going to start telling you you’re stupid, you can’t do this no care, you know, no one cares what you think. Being able to recognize that voice and then say, okay, so is this voice here, because I feel unsafe, or is this voice here because this is just new to me and I’m at I just kind of I’m feeling like I’m in resistance, because what I’ve experienced is if it’s a trauma thing, it’s more of a shutdown, more a fight, when it’s more of like a like, I don’t know if I should do this, like I see other people doing I’m not sure if it’s, for me, it’s a little bit more of a resistance piece, like it’s a little bit more crunchy. But the questions that you can ask yourself, as you know, how, what am I feeling right now on my body? You know, what thoughts? Am I having? What emotions are coming up for me? Where have I felt this way before? Right? Where has someone asked me to do something that felt unsafe before, you know where has been perceived by someone, or having someone watching me have that felt unsafe before, and when you can get to the to the root of some of those stories, and you can recognize, okay, so this is a little bit more than just, this is a new task I haven’t learned yet or new skill I haven’t mastered. And it’s useful, like do that with someone else, if you can, if we can, we can’t read our own label, it’s helps for someone to hold space for us and ask some questions. I think that initial thought process and questioning can be super helpful.

Meg Casebolt 21:03
Yeah. And then in terms of what you’ve seen from your clients, or you’ve experienced in your business around the ways that you market or that you’re helping them to market are used. And, and I know from going through your trainings, that you also talk about visibility in terms of like how you show up and where you want to be seen and how you want to be perceived and how that can be influenced by previous trauma. But you know, are you finding that your clients as they’re discovering this about themselves are moving away from social media or trying to find alternatives? Or are you finding that it’s like, Okay, now that I recognize these, these root causes of this, I feel like I can kind of dig in and do what I need to do. How are you seen the impact of people recognizing these trauma informed experiences on the way they show up in social?

Nicole Keeber 21:54
Yeah, I think was it one of the things that they’re doing is they’re recognizing that they’re being given business solutions or marketing solutions to try and solve an emotional challenge? When they’re

Meg Casebolt 22:04
no go back? We’re being given business solutions or marketing solutions to an emotional challenge. Right? Okay. Talk me through that. So I just, did I just cut you off and make you repeat yourself? I just totally.

Nicole Keeber 22:18
It’s totally fine. So you know, I’m in the I’m in the coaching world, which is a different world can I say just after being a therapist, but this online service based world? What happens is when someone like if let’s say, we have a client, and we give them homework, and they get into resistance around it, if you are not trauma informed as a human in the program, or the person working with you in the program, what do we do we give them more strategies, right, we give them more tools, within Well, this might work or that might work. And this might work. Because we’re trying to put business solution or marketing solutions on top of an emotional challenge. There’s something underneath here, they don’t need one more thing. Instead, because they’re recognizing it, they’re less likely to fall for the shiny object syndrome, you know, shiny object thing, or kind of the FOMO around different tactics, because they recognize because they’ve done this work, that this is something I’m working through, and I need to find what works for me, as opposed to looking at what everybody else is doing. So they get some clarity there, that’s really helpful. And then they’re able to ask themselves, you know, how do I authentically enjoy showing up in my life? Do I like writing? Do I like being on video, I prefer to talk things through I’m writing that my fun, my favorite thing to do. Instead, they unhook from the idea that there’s only one way to do things. And if I don’t say this every day, it is what works for you will work for you. Right, not what works for other people, what works for you will work for you. And they get really clear to be able to support themselves to find the marketing techniques that work for them their nervous system, and they do work for them. And a lot of them do unhook from this social media mayhem, because it is hard on them, their energy is depleting. Or they find a really easy, targeted ways to kind of get in and get out that they let go that kind of codependent nature that we’re taught to have around social media

Meg Casebolt 24:21
taught me more about the codependence of social media. That’s fascinating.

Nicole Keeber 24:24
It’s like, okay, so I need to so if it’s codependents, like, I can’t function if you’re not functioning, I’m not okay, if you’re not okay. I have to be everything that you need. I have to jump in and fix something. So it keeps us kind of, you know, hooked into each other again. So the social media then becomes like if it’s Tik Tok, or whatever it is, yeah, it becomes this presence, this thing outside of ourselves that we’re having to pour into to get something from. Yeah. And that could be revenue. It could be safety. It could be recognition. It could just be like a stimulation like we’re Getting some, like ADHD kids like we need, we need

Meg Casebolt 25:03
that dopamine, we need those lights.

Nicole Keeber 25:07
It’s like stimulus, stimulus stimulus, the

Meg Casebolt 25:09
reward center in our brain means to get that reaction. Yeah. And so we’re so

Nicole Keeber 25:14
enmeshed in codependent into the social media. Because we have not found we’ve not been able to kind of separate ourselves from it. And I’m trying to think of the word I want to use here. I’m just going to use the word be more autonomous. Because when you think about people who are codependent they’re everything’s about the other person, what can I do for you poor and poor important? Same thing with social media, more post more comments, I need to like your stuff. So you like my stuff, I need to create something that you will want to share because my stuff only valuable if you’ll share it. And so it becomes a maddening mass. That just is so depleting our energy, and that we lose ourselves in it and we forget where it starts and we end for kind of use the word codependent. Yeah.

Meg Casebolt 26:04
And I think also like, for the past few years, having been in this pandemic, and not being able to have those in person connections and relationships, we’ve become even more dependent on social for the codependence for the recognition that we’re feeling from people, which is isolated, I’m in my house, I’m alone, you know, now things are starting to open up a little bit again, but it you know, my kids not wearing a mask at school anymore. So that’s a change. But, you know, through all of the changes and and the political instability, that’s been, you know, there’s so many things that are going wrong that and we’re in isolation of it. And there’s something about being seen on social that, that takes away a little bit of that FOMO. That takes away a little bit of that isolation, but it replaces it with now I need people to react to me.

Nicole Keeber 26:55
Yeah, it’s like validation, right? It’s so funny that you’re mentioning that, like a good friend of mine said that what she seeing in the was she was seeing through the pandemic during the online, you know, remote work, where people who would typically be in the office were all at home, she said, now I’m getting at email messages in the morning, saying, Good morning. You know, I’m here today. Good morning, she said, because they need to be seen showing up for work. They need to be validated, they need to be recognized. And she’s like, so I’m getting emails every every morning about people saying I’m here, I’m here, say so kind of same thing that you’re talking about with the social media presences. I’m here, I’m valid, like, you see me? Yeah, and those of us that have been

Meg Casebolt 27:39
online for a long time are like just turn your slack on. Okay, people will see that you’re online, you don’t need to come out and declare it. But I think there is something there about the validation. And the declaration of, you know, if it’s not on social, did it really happen?

Nicole Keeber 27:54
Yeah. And if you didn’t do eight posts yesterday, did it really happen? Right? There’s that kind of, I think, desperate energy that happens in those spaces, as well. And I think some

Meg Casebolt 28:06
of the platforms have really built themselves to be moment by moment. So if you’re not reporting what you’re doing on Twitter and getting reactions to it, do you still feel good about the work that you’ve done? If you haven’t, you know, if I’ve been tagged in a lot of into stories, where people are like, I’m working through my course, this is great. I’m getting ready for this program. And I’m like, I love seeing that they’re doing that. Because I like knowing that they’re doing the work, but tagging me in the story to say that they’re doing the work, is it? Is it accountability? Or is it performative? I don’t know.

Nicole Keeber 28:41
No. I think I think it’s all of it. And I think it’s some people’s desire to connect. And we’re so disconnected, that we find ways to do that. And it’s really shallow, though, it’s kind of a shallow experience. And so, and also these, you know, these platforms, we create content for them, like we are their employees, you know, it’s kind of like this weird dynamic of you don’t exist if we don’t exist. And so of course, you’re gonna want us to post three to eight times a day, of course, you’re going to penalize us if we only post one time a day and then in the norm is fine, because you need to keep hustling to keep your content going, so you can make money off a bus.

Meg Casebolt 29:20
So what you just said, it comes back to what we were talking about the beginning about bad bosses and the way that we have changed our behavior to deal with the bad bosses and then locked ourselves into these patterns. But instead of working for you know, the the jerk that now I’m working for Zuckerberg, and I’m creating for him because I’m getting those recognitions, the rewards the validation from the place that he’s created. And if I don’t continue to show up, I won’t get those stimulus. I won’t get that feedback. It’s so interesting to think of social media of being an employee of social media in order to promote our businesses.

Nicole Keeber 30:00
I know because when I think about this, and I think about all the tasks that I have in my business, and I’m certainly not on social a lot, but when I think about being there, and what I think I need to do in order to be present and visible for people to want to work with me, it does feel like there is a little bit of a pain of dammit. It’s a familiar feeling to like, I don’t want to go to work. I hate working for this person, like, Why do I have to do this, and it just has a different energy around it. So I really love that, you know, you were kind of talking about it being a new boss for ourselves.

Meg Casebolt 30:35
We just had an interview with Sheila where she was like, you know, I get online and you know, I get I’m social and I have the comparison itis and the inner critic kicks in, and I’m like, Oh, it’s good to know, even the therapist and mental health professionals are experiencing those same pangs of not feeling good enough or not feeling like anybody’s gonna see what nobody wants to see what it is that we’re creating for them. But we feel obligated to show up in this way. Like even the folks have been doing this for decades, and really digging into what what your brains doing and what your nervous system is doing. Are, we’re still falling to these traps, we’re still experiencing this. You you all the mental health professionals are still trying to figure out how to navigate, oh, yeah, the appropriate level to show up versus what can be codependent

Nicole Keeber 31:21
because it’s not natural, it’s not natural for us to be that apparent perceived and visible to that number of people at all times, or to be taking in the information of other people at that level of people at all times, it’s not really a natural state press is, you know, it’s something that we’re nervous systems are not used to. So

Meg Casebolt 31:40
is there there was there a study that like your brain can only hold like 100 or 150 people, I can’t remember what the final number is that they found in the study. But when you think about the your brain only being able to hold enough space and working memory for a small group of people that used to be the cap of what a small town was, like, you could get to know everyone in your small town that lived near the same, you know, they all went to the same gas station and, you know, the same stoplights. And then as our worlds have grown, our brains can’t evolve that quickly to be able to go beyond that 150 people, but the goals that are being presented to us are you need to have hundreds of 1000s of people, and then you know what, if they follow you, then you should follow them back and you should be engaging with them, but you can’t remember who they are. So then you have to go back and, and, and the our brains are not wired, like you said, this is not natural, that the expectation is to know 1000s of people and to walk talk to 1000s and 10s of 1000s of people all the time, it’s stressful on our bodies. Let’s acknowledge it.

Nicole Keeber 32:49
And totally is it totally so anyone struggling with them. Like it’s because you’re a human being and you haven’t evolved to like, you know, super species to be able to hold that many people in their stories in your mind to then also be able to collaborate with them and cross post and remember whose program as what and what client you’ve worked with. And it’s, you know, it’s just a lot. So I think that when people can recognize that, you know, if I’m feeling kind of stressed or resistant, you know, to social media, in particular, you like being on these platforms that need us to work for them. And what they tell us then is we’ll just provide value show up and provide value. And I’ve damn said that I know I said that. But the thing is, is that again, it’s creating that dynamic of just provide value and may be someone to work with, you just provide to just pour into like give your all to lit with you know the hope that maybe you will get something in return. And that is a toxic dynamic as well, in my opinion, just in my home

Meg Casebolt 33:51
reminds me a little bit of in Amelia and Emily Nagurski, his book burnout, where they’re like, this is human Givens syndrome. This is yeah, um, you know, there are. There’s this expectation that you will show especially for those of us who socialized as women and raises women, it’s like, you are expected to be calm, you are expected to be humble, you are expected to show up and give and not ask for anything else in return. And that is your role as a woman and a giver and other people can just take from you however much they want to and not reciprocate that and what you’re explaining here about like, just show up and give value but like, to what end? How much do you need to give to make it enough value? What’s the cap? You know, gee, I don’t know. That’s why it’s a podcast and we can have these discussions.

Nicole Keeber 34:45
Exactly, exactly. And you know what, what ends up happening and I’ve seen this a lot lately is because there’s so much noise and we’re in this frantic, you know, pouring into to these platforms, we have to become more overt, we have to become a little bit more fallacious or you know, whatever. So what you see then is that people start bringing more dramatic stories to the table, they’re sharing trauma stories, they’re, you know, like, it gets really big and activating, because people are needing to get eyes on their stuff. And so they start to bring more and more of those things into their marketing in their content. And that’s one of the things I talk about a lot is that we can do harm to the people around us when we are bringing those unchecked stories, you know, into our marketing, because we are feeling desperate, and then need to get in front of more people with a more dramatic story, more detail, that you know, all the things, you know, you know what I mean? So, so, you know, with that dynamic that we have with social media, we had to up the ante up the ante up the ante. And when we do that we are harming the people whose orbit we’re in by being very careless with their nervous systems and the relationship that we have with them. Yeah, I

Meg Casebolt 35:59
love that you brought that up that it’s not just, you know, I can, I can experience this in my business. And I can have that traumatic response, and it can implant impact my nervous system. But also, if I am not careful about the ways that I am expressing myself or talking about my background or explaining my processes, then I can inflict a traumatic response on an employee on a client, on just somebody in my audience, just somebody who’s following me these places can be can be triggered by the content that we’re creating the advice that we’re giving, you know, all of that. So what are some things that we can become aware of, as, you know, leaders, as employees, as service providers, as content creators? What are some ways that we can hate to use the term do no harm, because it’s the name of your program, but but do no harm both to ourselves, and others? Like there’s a reason it’s the name of your program, I just didn’t want us on trade.

Nicole Keeber 37:00
I think I always start with you, right? Like most of the programs and the things I do, I always say, I want you to start with yourself first. So do no harm to yourself, don’t feel like you have to share an experience or story of your life that you’re not ready to share with others. Or that is not up for consumption from people whose opinion are you that you don’t need or whose opinion that you have not been earned by you, right or not, has not been earned. So I think that’s the very first thing is to get clear about what you feel comfortable sharing, and what you don’t and not feeling the pressure to then put yourself out there in ways that feel unsafe. So that’s the very first thing. But the second thing is, is that if you are marketing yourself based on some kind of experience that you’ve had in your past, or a hero’s journey, we all have that, right. But there are ways that you can do that. And to do less harm to the audience that you have, we can’t assume that we know who’s in the room. But we have to kind of check that out. And when we are not able to, what we can do is then we can give and there’s a lot of controversy about trigger warnings, content advisory system say, yeah, a lot. But I still I still kind of fall on the side of information about what you’re going to talk about, or what you’re going to share is important to people. So give it a content advisory to say, hey, we’re going to be talking about childhood abuse in this talk in the conference. If that’s hard for you, you may want to find another meeting, you might want to find another class to go to, or, Hey, I’m doing a live here on Instagram today to tell you about something that happened. The the the topic includes these things, if this is hard for you might want to sit this one out. I think that that’s a kind of loving thing to do, because we don’t always know who is going to be consuming our content, particularly if it’s passive. So using language that is a little bit more broad and less detailed. Giving them more of a generalization of your story as opposed to like the play by play, you know, watching the language that you use, you know, is it inclusive? You know, does it have a history that’s connected to it that you probably didn’t recognize is really harmful to a particular group of people. So being more intentional with how we show up the words that we use, and what we’re sharing is very important when it comes to how we’re marketing ourselves, whether you’re speaking from a stage doing a social media post writing a blog posts, whatever that may be,

Meg Casebolt 39:21
yeah, and I think it to add on to that, recognizing that by by showing up at all, you’re going to make mistakes. And that part of the process is acknowledging and resolving those, you know, I have a client who just rolled out a new payment plan, she was like everyone will be grandfathered in if they’re already a member of this and one of her, you know somebody in her audience and just so you know, that’s, that’s like a racist term to say grandfathered into something because of the way that slavery was, you know, passed down and she was able to she she went through she changed all of her. You know the ways She was talking about that particular payment process. And she she posted and said, just so you know, we changed this based on feedback from the audience based on the knowledge that we’ve learned about this, we and she even said, like, I sort of knew that was problematic, but I didn’t take the time to learn about it yet. So I’m sorry, and we fixed it. And there are going to be times that you have set a trauma response and someone else and don’t, don’t know it. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t fix it for the future and be better in the future. So don’t be afraid to speak for fear have. We all have the trauma of being told that we’re wrong? And that might be one that we have to work through in order to continue to grow?

Nicole Keeber 40:41
Exactly. We can’t No, you know, there’s no way for us to not trigger like the Do No Harm piece of it. Like that’s impossible to do. But like Brene Brown says, she’s like, I, you know, I strive to instead of be right, I strive to get it right, you know, so it’s about circling back, cleaning it up, you know, recognizing and acknowledging the mistake and not being afraid to, to practice and get it wrong, because that’s how we learn. And, you know, when I’m giving a podcast, or even in some of my classes, you know, when I’m recording, and people will see if I, if I say something like, Oh, that’s not what I meant to say, I will correct myself, I say I’m working on my language around, you know, my ableist language I’m working on, you know, including, you know, everyone here like that. I’m working on that too. And so I just acknowledge it, correct it and keep moving. Because I think perfectionism is you know, the, the need and the desire to be perfect, is an oppressive and toxic way of being in the world. Like, it’s an expectation that we cannot meet. And so it keeps us stuck to no perfection here. Just a desire to do better.

Meg Casebolt 41:50
Thank you for that. So if people want to learn more from you if they want to, you know, go through your program, your do no harm program to learn more about how trauma shows up, and how we can be more trauma informed entrepreneurs, both for ourselves and others. Oh, there’s my dog. So goes to making it without the dog shakes out? How can people

Nicole Keeber 42:09
find you, Nicole? So probably the best way to find me is on my website, which is Nicole dot Lewis dash keeper.com. And let me just say the internet is not evil within itself. But you can use it to market your business in ways that work for you. And is actually a beautiful gift the internet, right? It just is and social media can be a beautiful gift when we know how to navigate it ourselves. So you can find me there. You can also find me on Instagram at Nicole Lewis keeper and on Tik Tok, believe it or not, tick tock Yeah. I’ve been there a little bit, but it’s kind of fun. And it’s it’s the business therapist is my handle there. So there’s just some ways that you can follow me and see how I use social media and you know, kind of play along see what happens.

Meg Casebolt 42:57
And we will absolutely include all of those in the show notes will include include a link to your book. Thank you so much for being here today. I’ve really, really appreciate it.

Nicole Keeber 43:05
Thank you for having me. I loved it.

Meg Casebolt 43:11
Thank you so much for listening to the social slowdown podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe or come on over to social slowdown.com and sign up for our email list so you never miss an episode. We’d also love if you could write a review to help other small business owners find the show you can head over to social slowdown.com/review Or grab that link in our show notes for easy access. We’ll be back soon with more tips to help you market your business without being beholden to social media. Talk to you then

Please forgive any typos as this transcript was automatically generated by otter.ai.

burnout, hustle and trauma responses with nicole lewis keeber