Episode 52 Find Healing through the Tao Te Ching, with Jessie Kanzer

Mar 2, 2022

Can wisdom from the past still ring true today? Do you sometimes need help returning to your center when life gets busy? Do you know how to properly “do nothing”?

MEET JESSIE KANZER

As an 8-year-old refugee who only spoke Russian, Jessie (or “Asya” then) yearned to fit in. Having arrived in America, she changed her name and much about herself. Later though, she experienced depression, an eating disorder, and all sorts of existential problems. She pursued Hollywood fame, men, and the American Dream, but always fell short – until she stopped. 

With the help of the Tao Te Ching she rediscovered herself and her innate power, and she learned to chill. Her book, Don’t Just Sit There, DO NOTHING, will help others do the same. 

Visit Jessie Kanzer’s website and connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

FREEBIE: Read the first two chapters of Jessie’s book for free!

IN THIS PODCAST:

  • About the Tao Te Ching
  • How to be an expert in doing nothing
  • Let go of the “all or nothing” mentality

About the Tao Te Ching

The Tao was written in the 6th century BC.

It is amazing to me how human nature has changed very little. Our surroundings may have changed but our needs [are very much the same]. (Jessie Kanzer)

Human beings at their core have been much the same throughout human history. People throughout centuries have struggled with:

  • Comparing themselves to others
  • Searching for external validation
  • Following outside messaging for fear of stepping into who they are

And so the Tao always brings us back to our center … brings us back to quietude, and encourages us to connect with our inner selves. (Jessie Kanzer)

How to be an expert in doing nothing

  • Have an activity that you do that centers on stillness: this can be meditation, yoga, meditative running, walking, breathwork, spending time in nature, and so forth.
  • Seek stillness physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally.
  • Focus on building the connection to your inner voice.
  • Schedule time into your calendar: write “DO NOTHING” for 1, 2, 5, or 10 minutes in your daily activities.
  • Enter your flow state: try activities once a day or week that help you to enter your flow state where you forget about time passing, and focus wholly on one thing.

Let go of the “all or nothing” mentality

Sometimes you need to be honest and real with yourself and push yourself to do the things that you have been avoiding getting to.

However, when it comes to practicing stillness, you cannot beat yourself up about struggling because the struggle is a part of the process.

Each time it does not go well, try again.

I always tell people, and I say this in the book, do what you can. Do what you can for yourself … you start with little moments of stillness. (Jessie Kanzer)

Consistent small actions that grow over time are far more sustainable than forcing yourself to try something completely new and then beating yourself up if you fail.

Connect With Me

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Resources Mentioned And Useful Links:

BOOK | Jessie Kanzer – Don’t Just Sit There, DO NOTHING: Healing, Chilling, and Living

with the Tao Te Ching

Visit Jessie Kanzer’s website and connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter

How Therapists can really help parents of high risk kids with Aaron Huey

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Transcript

[CHRIS McDONALD]

The Holistic Counseling Podcast is part of the Practice of the Practice network, a network of podcasts seeking to help you market and grow your business and yourself. To hear other podcasts like Behind the Bite, Full of Shift and Impact Driven Leader, go to www.practiceofthepractice.com/network.

Welcome to the Holistic Counseling Podcast, where you discover diverse wellness modalities, advice on growing your integrative practice, and grow confidence in being your unique self. I'm your host, Chris McDonald. I'm so glad you're here for the journey.

Welcome to today's episode of the Holistic Counseling Podcast. I'm your host, Chris McDonald. If you're a new listener to the podcast, I want to say welcome. I'm glad you're here. As a listener, you have access to my free nine-part email course, Becoming a Holistic Counselor. In this course, you'll explore different holistic strategies, how to develop your skills as a holistic counselor and how to attract your ideal holistic clients. Go to www.holisticcounselingpodcast.com, scroll down, enter your name and email address today.

Today's guest is Jessie Kanzer, author of the book Don’t Just Sit There, DO NOTHING: Healing, Chilling, and Living with the Tao Te Ching. Jessie was born in the Soviet Union. At the age of eight, she immigrated with her family to Brooklyn. She's a writer, former reporter and actress. Jessie lives with her two daughters and husband in Dobbs Ferry, New York. Welcome to the podcast, Jessie.

[JESSIE KANZER]

Thank you, Chris, for having me.

[CHRIS]

Yes. So can you tell my listeners a little bit more about yourself and your work?

[JESSIE]

I would love to. So my book, as you said, Don’t Just Sit There, DO NOTHING is going to be out shortly. It's available for pre-order, but the whole roundabout way of me writing this book really encapsulates my entire life. So I set out to help people with the information of these ancient teachings of the Tao Te Ching, because that's really what saved my life. But in so doing, I realized I had to tell my whole entire story. As you said, I was born in the Soviet Union. My immigration, we were actually refugees. We were seeking asylum in America and we were waiting in various other countries. There was a lot of trauma, early trauma involved and back then, and especially in that culture, it was never addressed. People just didn't think of child psychology as a thing.

So I stored a lot of this trauma and then I really tried to reinvent myself in America where I didn't have the best welcome by the way, because it was on the heels of the Cold War and kids were not that nice. Like Russian people were not that loved, especially, you remember all those culture, like the movies and the way that Russian people were portrayed did not serve me well. I was this like little Jewish girl from the Soviet Union. I had no idea what was going on. I changed my name, which was Asya. I changed it to Jessie. I changed my entire personality. I was going to an inner city public school in Brooklyn and I learned that edginess is the way to go.

I became more edgy and with time drugs were part of my world and I developed an eating disorder. I was very much plagued by these internal struggles and they became external struggles eventually. At the time that I graduated college, I was still bulimic for many years. At that point I was not forming relationships. I couldn't maintain friendships. I got into a major car accident where I had brain damage and I was

[CHRIS]

Oh my goodness.

[JESSIE]

I was forced to be still. There was no other choice. So what happened was that I discovered, I started looking at all these different teachings. I knew that I needed help. When I came upon the Tao Te Ching, I started reading these little verses. It's very simplistic in a way and at the same time, very complex and. The Dao is full of paradoxes. So I started reading a verse at a time. I started walking and meditating on these verses and over time I healed. I healed my bulimia. I healed from depression. A lot of hurdles came again through life because that's what life does.

I became a mom and eventually I had postpartum depression. So this is something, it's a tool that I go back to time and time again, because we're never really fully there and enlightened in this human life. So this book that I wrote I had started Don’t Just Sit There, DO NOTHING before the pandemic. As the pandemic took hold, I really felt like a lot of this information was calling to be written, was calling to be given to people. The Dao has existed. It was written in 6th Century BC. It is amazing to me how human nature has changed very little. Our surroundings may have changed, but our needs ---

[CHRIS]

But it's still relevant, isn't it?

[JESSIE]

Yes, it's so relevant. And our needs and our propensity to compare ourselves all the time and to look to outside messaging and to get lost in this external world, it still happens to us today. Very much so. So the doubt always brings us back to our center. Always brings us back to quiet and encourages us to connect with our inner selves. That's what my book is all about.

[CHRIS]

So do you have a favorite, I guess, passage from the book or from the Dao that really helps you?

[JESSIE]

Yes. It's very hard for me to judge my own words. I love all of the stories that I tell in my book. I have stories about my terrible dating days and I was like a real love addict and pretty pathetic in my search for love. I have stories about that are more serious about I experienced, I guess we call it now gray area rape when I was an actress. There's so many stories about what it is to be a woman and the struggles that we have in this world. But also to be a human.

So it's hard for me to judge. Some of my stories are my favorite, but these are my own stories, but for the Dao, it's pretty easy to tell you. I actually have the book here. So I am a big fan of verse nine because for me it encapsulates the entire picture. I'll just read it for you, "Fill your bowl to the brim and it will spill. Keep sharpening your knife and it will blunt. Chase after money and security and your heart will never unclench. Care about people's approval and you will be their prisoner. Do your work, then step back, the only path to serenity."

[CHRIS]

That's powerful.

[JESSIE]

I mean, we can, I think you could write a whole book just on that.

[CHRIS]

I think so. Yes, no, that's great. Wow.

[JESSIE]

I see this desperation in a lot of people today and it's really, it's always existed. I see it in people that are close to me and also in strangers, like in the store. I had to go to the Apple store because I screwed up my computer and those things happen and I was rushing around too much and that stuff happens. I don't stress too much about these external things. I take it as as a notification, a reminder, "Hey, get back to centers. Slow down." But then I see these people freaking out. You see this in different parts of the world, I mean like screaming and cursing at the sales assistant, who's just there to to help you.

I really, I feel this desperation in a lot of human beings and I sometimes have to, like, I want to scream that it doesn't have to be this way. The Tao Te Ching teachings, it's not just the Tao. Those same teachings can be found in other spiritual, texts and spiritual teachers of old. But for me, it's so simply encapsulates just the crap we need to let go of and what we need to do to get back to a state of contentment peace.

[CHRIS]

Oh, I agree. It just brought me back to mindfulness too, and just trying to stay in the present moment, because I know this past week I was rushing around too much and ended up breaking something that I was to decorate and I'm thinking to myself, I'm not being mindful because I'm not taking my time with what I need to do and not really here because I'm thinking about the next task. I think that's like ---

[JESSIE]

We all ---

[CHRIS]

Let me step back.

[JESSIE]

And that's fine. That's why life is up and flow because we get away from center and then we bring ourselves back. As long as you know how to bring yourselves back, you'll be fine. But this is what I attempted to do with Don’t Just Sit There, DO NOTHING is to grant knowledge. It's not just from Tao Te Ching. I use teachings from other therapists and other teachers and other spiritual wisdom that's helped me. I bring it in. I used the verses, my favorite verses. I used 47 verses from the Dao. It's actually a total of 81 verses and I used 47 verses because some of them get repetitive. I'd share the verse and I went through dozens and dozens of translations and I was trying to be the most authentic to that original text.

So I share the verse, I share my interpretation of it, and then I share a story or an observation from the world that really underlines this verse that really shows it in action sort of in life and how we veer off our path a lot of times. What I was hoping is through reading this book, I hope people will look at their life differently, even all the stuff that happened to them that they're not thrilled with. I hope that they will start to see the lessons that come with those things that we don't want, with those mistakes and those accidents even, and the hardships. Because they all come bearing gifts.

[CHRIS]

I think it is a lot of the perception with this too. Am I going to get mad over this computer not working today? Or am I just going to take care of it and stay in my peaceful place?

[JESSIE]

I don't know if this is for everyone, for me, I often do a lot of things at the same time. I'm also a mom of two little kids and I have things happen where I lose something. Or I mean, this is normal. So I'm not going to lose my piece of mind are these things that happen. And this book, the Dao, as well as my book, it helps us remember that really almost nothing in the world is worth your peace of mind. Of course we lose it, we lose it at times and there's times to be sad and there's times to grieve, and this is just a tool to help us always return to the center.

[CHRIS]

So that's the whole point to always return to the center?

[JESSIE]

Yes, to return to yourself. I always say like, I know what my job is. I've known this for a while. A lot of people come to me with their issues. I know my job is to just bring people back to themselves. You don't need a guru. You just need to reconnect with your higher self, your inner power, your knowing that sometimes we forget about, or can't even hear because of all of the external voices and messaging

[CHRIS]

All the noise.

[JESSIE]

Yes. So much noise.

[CHRIS]

Exactly. Getting back to self. I think that's so essential.

[JESSIE]

I try to do it. A lot of spiritual self-help books can be very serious. I always try to remember that to me, enlightenment actually means lightening up. So I try to do it in a fun way. I mean, there are silly stories. There are simple stories. There are things that even though, yes, my story is particular, like I was an immigrant and I came from a different world, but actually the people who have read it, what people tell me is they can relate to so much of it because at our core, our experiences are pretty similar. Like someone can have a really horrible experience. Someone can have a less horrible experience, but the way we feel, the isolation we feel, this need for belonging, that we all feel it's all the same. So I try to do it in a soft way and offer folks exercises and just shift and perception that can alter things for you without all that jarring information; that sometimes I've started to get really sick of seeing these things where like, "If you just do this program, you will live happily ever after."

[CHRIS]

Yes.

[JESSIE]

So I dive away from that.

[CHRIS]

But I think sense of humor too. I mean, to me, that's a lifelong skill that can help you get back to yourself.

[JESSIE]

Totally, totally. Because sometimes when we are having hard times, it can be so ridiculous that if you don't laugh at it, you will cry and laughing can be very healing.

[CHRIS]

I think it helps connect you with other people too and friends and family.

[JESSIE]

Yes. And those days when everything goes wrong, you have to laugh.

[CHRIS]

Oh, absolutely. We'll have those days.

[JESSIE]

Yes, days and weeks. I'm also like, and we talked about this off the air, but I also, I'm a very woo-woo person. I believe that ---

[CHRIS]

That you're in the right place.

[JESSIE]

Yes, exactly. So I also believe in astrology. I say in the book, I believe in everything a little bit. If somebody brings me information that they're passionate about, I believe them, even if it's a little bit. I think that everyone experiences the world and in different ways. But I think that there are commonalities. So I have an astrologer that I really love and I follow him and I listen to. It's interesting to me that last week you broke something and I broke something. Like there are sometimes we also are very interconnected and the pandemic showed that so much to everything. And we do experience big shifts together too. So sometimes we're all suffering. So we got to laugh together.

[CHRIS]

Oh gosh. So can you tell me more about being an expert in doing nothing? What exactly does for you?

[JESSIE]

Yes, of course. Like I mentioned in the story of this book and how I got to the Dao, I was actually forced to do nothing like physically forced after that car accident, which I had after college. That magically was the time that I actually began healing. Healing was not happening for me before that. I thought that that stayed with me. Even though this has been two decades ago, that stayed with me because isn't that interesting that sometimes we need to be brought to our knees in order to finally sit still and heal? I was still bulimic in the time. I mean, my body was broken and I still could not let go of this habit that was not serving me at all at that point.

I'm not saying that bulimia ever serves anyone, but I had wanted to stop it for a long time while I was still binging and purging because it becomes an addiction just like else. Like it's, you're addicted to the feeling you get when you binge and then the freedom you get when you purge and the control rather. It's funny that it took that car accident for me to realize that, hey, I don't even know how to sit still, because I didn't. I binged when I couldn't deal with my emotions. I didn't just sit there and process anything. That began a slow journey of healing and I became an expert in a lot of things. I'm a trained Reiki healer.

[CHRIS]

Oh you are? Wow.

[JESSIE]

Yes I am. I'm also a trained intuitive. I've studied with, she's a renowned, intuitive and psychic Laura Day. She was the intuitive to like all the celebrities back in the day. She doesn't do that anymore, but so I trained with her. I also meditate I do breathwork. I do all of these things not because I think that's the only one way to be, but because they serve me. I write a lot in my book, like there's different ways to be still. What I'm talking about is stillness of the mind, stillness of the soul, like an inner piece that you find.

It's interesting my husband does it through running. He's an avid runner, but he'll go for like hours because that clears his head. That's a form of stillness too, when you're able to close your computer and say, I'm going to deal with this work later and you're able to go out in the woods for two hours. That's a form of stillness. So I try not to judge, I present different examples of it in don't just sit there, do nothing. I have a section at the end of each chapter that says, do your Dao. The irony is you're doing your Dao by doing nothing. So I'm really good at actually physical too. Like I can do ---

[CHRIS]

So you can just sit and just be?

[JESSIE]

Yes. I love to sit and just be. I love it. Like I love it. It is the best. I love incense. If I just can sit on my couch, I have a couch in my office and I sit and I just watch the smoke go up and it just continues. It is the most calming thing in the world. I also do more traditional type of meditations. Yes, I'm really, really good at doing that.

[CHRIS]

I know that's challenging for a lot of people though.

[JESSIE]

It really is. It's always surprising to me, but then I remember that it was also challenging for me. So I've been on both ends. I have friends who, when they do yoga for instance, or there's a bar class that used to be popular in my community pre pandemic, none of my friends could stay at the end for the breathwork when you're just lying down and you're doing some breathwork. And I thought it's so interesting. They can't stay for next ---

[CHRIS]

Shavasana

[JESSIE]

With Shavasana and yoga or this breathwork that they would do at the bar. They couldn't stay. A lot of people tell me that and I find that so interesting.

[CHRIS]

My sister was like, "Why do I have to stay for five? I got stuff to do."

[JESSIE]

Which is true, which is true.

[CHRIS]

I know. People have that in their mind.

[JESSIE]

Listen, sometimes I would leave because I would want to go home and do an hour meditation. So we always have our own reasons, but it's interesting because they would tell me like, "I can't. No, it freaks me out. I can't just lie down and just let my brain go. I can't." So I do know that this information's important. Also I honestly, from personal experience and from watching other people, I know that connecting with your inner voice actually does save your life, connecting with your inner power. So there's different ways to do it. I tell people who are super busy, who like to pack their schedule, I tell them, schedule on schedule time. Like put, even if it's only 10 minutes in the middle of the day, just put in capital letters. In my book, it's in capital letters. Just write, do nothing, 10 minutes in the middle of your calendar and see what happens.

[CHRIS]

That's great.

[JESSIE]

Literally you could just like, you could look out the window for 10 minutes and ---

[CHRIS]

I did that this morning. I got up, it's fall right now as we're recording and I'm looking at the fog outside and I'm just watching a leaf fall from the tree, just fall into the ground, nice and slow. Just a moment like that, just capturing nothing moments.

[JESSIE]

That's exactly, it's funny. We're on the same page, Chris. That's exactly what I talk about. I say, even if you have one minute, just pause everything, stop answering those emails, and especially since a lot of us have been working from home, just very stationary on our computers. So like our bodies are still, but we're not still at all. We're doing a billion things. We have 50 tabs open. I say, if you just take a pause and look outside and watch the trees move with the breeze, that is a reset. A deep breath, deep inhale and the long exhale is also a reset. By the way, whenever I do that, I remember that oh my God, deep breathing, like a deep breath is very yummy. It's very satisfying.

[CHRIS]

Oh yes, for sure.

[JESSIE]

We don't do it that much.

[CHRIS]

No. Well, I think it's you break it down into different things because I think when I do spin class for me, if I get really going, it feels almost meditative in a way.

[JESSIE]

That's right.

[CHRIS]

The emotion of it, even though I'm doing something, it's still I'm not think about anything else. It's like, because I can't breathe anyway. I got to try to catch my breath. I can't focus on much else.

[JESSIE]

Well, that's interesting. I do have a chapter in the book about the flow state because the flow state is another great pause for the mind. I do it. I started climbing with, my older daughter loves climbing. I started doing it and for me that's what happens. It's so hard. I have to focus so much on my like where am I going to put my hand next? Then I forget everything while I'm doing it. So we all get it through different, but yes, actually a flow state is also a really great break for the mind and for that monkey mind that keeps spinning.

[CHRIS]

Yes, exactly. I think you're right. Was starting with a minute because I know a lot of my clients, when I talk about moving from doing, to being that they get panicky, like "What do you mean ? Oh, I don't understand."

[JESSIE]

I know that it's definitely a transition. It's not like overnight. I can't just be like sit here on this pillow for an hour. That's not, it's a little by little and by moment. Also I think nature is really, really great for connecting with ourselves too, because nature doesn't care. Just doesn't give a bleep what's going on in life. It's there. It's beautiful. You're in the forest. Everything's alive. So sometimes if you can't sit still, go out for a nature walk. That can reset a lot of things for you. If you start doing that regularly as part of your practice of leaving all the to-dos and just going out, that's a form of doing nothing too, even though you're moving your body.

[CHRIS]

Yes, exactly. Connecting more with nature is good for your mental health. And sunshine, too, because I have all, a lot of people are impacted by lack of sun that causes depressive symptoms.

[JESSIE]

Yes, that's a good point as we're in like the darkest period of the year. Another thing that I also talk about in the book, journaling is very powerful. Sometimes it's, and it doesn't have to be with pen and paper. People say, there's research that the act of actually writing just for all my random thoughts and I put them down there and sometimes look at them later and I get insight. So I think also getting all the worries outside of ourselves is very important.

[CHRIS]

Oh yes.

[JESSIE]

So if you can just sit for those 10 minutes, those do nothing that you scheduled on your calendar, you can take pen and paper and start writing your thoughts out. That is also a meditate practice.

[CHRIS]

I just find interesting that you're mentioning a lot of these things that a lot of people wouldn't think is nothing.

[JESSIE]

Yes, no, you're absolutely right. You're absolutely right. What I mean by do nothing is don't do anything productive. We all have so much pressure on us. I think like

[CHRIS]

Achievement, production.

[JESSIE]

Achievement. Totally. I come from a very achievement-based society too, the Soviet Union. Like I was reading at four years old and this was not like, because I was some genius. This is how it was. It's a very achievement-based culture. Then America's also really externally based sometimes not so much achievement as it is like accolades and money and the stuff. There's a lot of stuff that we're supposed to want. So I think that there's a big difference between productive doing and doing as a form of being. It's like a form of doing that helps you with your being.

[CHRIS]

I like that; a form of doing that helps you with your being. So that puts it in easier to understand terms.

[JESSIE]

Exactly. It will. The other thing is the Tao Te Ching is super paradoxical. It'll say two completely opposite things in the same sentence all the time. So the don't just sit there, do nothing is also tongue and cheek a little bit because when you're sitting there it's like, you're just sitting there. You are doing nothing. So it's like consciously doing nothing or consciously doing nothing productive.

[CHRIS]

Nothing productive. Okay, got you. So what's a holistic strategy that you do as part of your daily practice?

[JESSIE]

I do not.

[CHRIS]

Do nothing.

[JESSIE]

Yes, I do nothing. I do not pick up my phone as the first thing in the morning. That was a conscious choice for me and it took time, meaning I can pick up my phone because I have great meditations on there, but I don't open that email tab. Like I don't want to connect with the external world first thing in the morning. It's a conscious decision to connect elsewhere. So it can be, I love guided meditations, especially in the morning or guided breathwork. If my kids haven't woken me up and I wake up before them, which is preferable, but it's not always the case, I try to, first thing in the morning or first thing, I can, maybe sometimes they get on the bus super early too.

It's like 7:40. So sometimes it's after that. I sit down and I do nothing consciously. I do either some form of breathwork. I like shamanic breath work and it's basically a guided meditation, but with breathing. You focus just on breathing. There's breath holes, and it really gets you out of that mind. I either do that, or some mornings I choose a different type of meditation. But that's something that is very important for me on a daily basis.

[CHRIS]

I'm guessing that when you don't do that, you probably know the difference, how you feel.

[JESSIE]

Yes, and I don't always, because once in a while, there's a day that starts off crazy and it's a weekend day and yes, so funny often by midday, I'm like, "Mommy has to go meditate."

[CHRIS]

I need a minute.

[JESSIE]

Yes. It's funny. If I don't get to it first thing in the morning, which again, I hate the all or nothing type of thing, because then you start to beat yourself up and it's just thing you're not getting to. So for me, it's about when I can. And by the way, if I can't do it first thing in the morning, then I make sure to, when I walk outside glance up at the sky and take that expansiveness into myself. It could be just a moment. It doesn't always look the same. It's not always those 15 minutes, 20 minutes. Days that I have more time, I will do a long, long meditation, but I hate the all or nothing. I always tell people, and I say this in the book, do what you can for yourself. It's little, little, that's why I say you start off with little, little moments of stillness, little moments of a deep breath or a moment of looking outside, or a moment of just free writing for one minute, little, little shifts.

[CHRIS]

But I think that leads to bigger results too.

[JESSIE]

It's more sustainable, right?

[CHRIS]

Yes, it is. Yes, for sure. Really helping your mental health.

[JESSIE]

It's not as scary as that as frightening. Because I've always been a spiritual searcher, I've always jumped into all that stuff. I understand that that's not how everybody is. We all have our inclinations, what we like, what we don't like. I've always like, I spent two weeks in Brazil. I just got a ticket one day when I was younger and I went and I just did things like that. But it also came from my own pain. I realized in writing the book, it was such a clear understanding by using my stories that, like a lot of the pain that I went through made me a spiritual searcher and being a spiritual searcher has served my life greatly. So I always urge in my writing as well as in just conversations that, I urge people to remember that everything has a shadow side and a light side to it. There's nothing that's just one.

[CHRIS]

Truth. Definitely.

[JESSIE]

That's what my hope is with Don’t Just Sit There, DO NOTHING; is people read it and they're like, "Aha, that happened to me. This is something I can do with it. Or this is something I can learn from it. Or what else can I learn from it?" Like, is this understanding that nothing happens to us. It happens for us.

[CHRIS]

That's a great perception shift.

[JESSIE]

Exactly, exactly. That's all about the change your thinking, change your life. It's just a shifted perception. That's what it's about. It's not anything specific that you have to do. There are no shoulds. And the Dao, why I love the Dao is there's no shoulds. There's no one way to be the whole. So the Tao Te Ching translates as the book of the way. And the point that you come to when you read it and analyze it enough is everyone has their own way. You have to find your own way and you do that by connecting with yourself. But there's not my way is not your way. That gives us a lot of freedom to be our individual self.

[CHRIS]

So what's a takeaway you could share today that could help listeners that are just starting their holistic journey?

[JESSIE]

I would say that one of the greatest challenges is loving, forgiving, and accepting ourselves. It starts with the way you treat yourself on the very, the most basic thing. So if you're starting on a mindfulness journey and you've never really dealt with your own issues, your own treatment towards yourself, you might be inclined to beat yourself up it. Maybe you're not thinking I'm not doing it right, or you don't have enough confidence or maybe you skipped a day or whatever it is. One of the, if you're really going to go on this journey to self-healing, one of the biggest takeaways is accept and forgive and love yourself through everything. I had to start that back when I was still bulimic and actively so. That meant that I didn't want to be doing it anymore.

There I was on the bathroom floor doing what I was doing. I had to, in that moment, the way changed for me is I had to say that is okay. I love myself anyway. I love myself, even though I'm not, I'm doing what I don't want to be doing right now. I'm failing myself in a way that I love through it because I realized that that moment was a bottom from which I was yet to rise. I urge everyone who is not in a good place right now to start with complete and full of acceptance of where they are, who they are, whatever messes they've created, it's all okay. You start by fully accepting and loving yourself in this very moment. Exactly as you are. Before you become who you want to be, just as you are, your messed up selves. Because in some ways we're all messed up and we're all doing the best we can.

[CHRIS]

Great mantras to live by; accepting yourself, loving yourself anyway.

[JESSIE]

Exactly where you are.

[CHRIS]

Exactly where you are, yes. Thank you so much for coming on today, Jessie. Sorry, didn't mean to interrupt you.

[JESSIE]

Oh no, no, no. It's okay. I just wanted to add that since going through the pandemic, there's a lot of people who have a lot of changes and I have those people in my own lives now. I have people going through divorces and breakups and job loss and a lot of changes. There's a state of mayhem that is sort of both external and internal right now. I say this all the time. I say this to person after person accept what is and go from there. So full acceptance is step one.

[CHRIS]

And go from there. Great. So what's the best way for listeners to find you and learn more about you?

[JESSIE]

Great question, Chris. Thanks for reminding me, because if I'm not reminded that, I'm really genuinely passionate as are you. I'm passionate about personal development, self-help, spirituality. So I forget myself in it and that's good. That's good for me. That's a really good, that's how I know I found my place. That's another thing, like what we talked about, the flow state. It's great to forget your own problems. I also urge folks to find something that does it for them, whether it's like for you, you have, you're cycling, you said? I have climbing. It could be painting whatever, but yes. So folks can find me on jessiekanzer.com. That's J-E-S-S-I-E-K-A-N-Z-E-R.com. All my social media information's on there. I'm often on Instagram talking about these things and all the book information is on there. So Don’t Just Sit There, DO NOTHING is sold everywhere books are sold and it is available for pre-order before March 1st, when it officially comes out on March 1st.

[CHRIS]

Oh, it comes out then. Okay, sweet. Awesome. Well, thank you so much for coming on the Holistic Counseling Podcast, Jessie.

[JESSIE]

Thank you for having me.

[CHRIS]

I want to thank my listeners so much for tuning into today's episode. Just remember to tap the plus button to subscribe to this podcast so you don't miss an episode. Be sure to rate and review so we can continue to build our holistic community. This is Chris McDonald, sending each one of you much light and love. Till next time, take care.

Thanks for listening to the Holistic Counseling Podcast. Ready to engage with other holistic counselors? Head on over to my Facebook group, The Holistic Counseling and Self-Care Group, where you'll be able to connect with other holistic counselors, just like you. You'll also gain invaluable resources on holistic practices daily and connect with others in a fun, drama-free environment. Remember to tune in next Wednesday for another episode,

This podcast is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regards to the subject matter covered. It is given with the understanding that neither the host, the publisher or the guests are rendering legal, accounting, clinical, or any other professional information. If you want a professional, you should find one.

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