We’re back with more funny, and this week doesn’t disappoint. For those of you who grew up in the Bible Belt and maybe went to a conservative church (or even if you didn’t), perhaps you were a bit sheltered like our guests this week. Before racking up over 12 million combined followers on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook and elsewhere, and hosting the hit podcast Correct Opinions, comedian Trey Kennedy came to fame on the short-form videosharing app Vine. His hilarious and pointed videos ranged from imitating a church youth pastor who is cornily trying to be cool and up on pop culture, to an overly sunny Dad who tries to drag his teenage son out of bed to go to church. Now, Trey has teamed up with his friend Jake Triplett, who he met at a Christian camp, and the two co host the podcast, along with Trey’s wife Katie (who keeps the pair on track and from going down too many rabbit holes). In this episode, the trio and Jen share the commonalities of their Baptist church upbringings, their naivete about dating customs (hearing Jake’s assessment of what he thought french kissing was will make you howl), and how Trey’s Bible wielding grandmother had a serious talk with him about rumors of him being gay (He’s not. Not that there’s anything wrong with that). They’ve managed to turn being ‘sheltered’ into comedy gold, and they’ve been taking their brand of comedy all around the country with their recent “Grow Up” tour and their clean comedy is resonating everywhere. Their funny spin on their past doesn’t just give us a good laugh; it also makes anyone who had a similar childhood feel like part of a big, quirky family.
As we close in on the end of our Community and Friendships series, we’re reflecting on the great conversations we’ve had toward building relationships in our lives. And this week’s convo puts the cherry on top as we discuss our friends as “chosen family” and the shape that our friendship and communities take when we are in a place where we need extra support. Our guest this week, Emma Nadler, is a therapist, author and speaker who is doing valuable work in helping people build deeper relationships. Emma knows firsthand what it means to rely on her circle in ways she never thought she would, when her daughter was diagnosed with a DNA disorder, shifting the life she knew, and navigating the special care, multiple hospital stays, and more than full-time parenting her daughter needs. By leaning on her community and being brave enough to ask for help (when sometimes the tendency is to act like we’ve got it all under control). Emma’s goal is to show us how we can look beyond preconceived notions about what it means to be valued and to belong, and leads us toward building a world where thriving in community is possible for every single person.
Emma and Jen touch on:
What it looks like when our “family” looks different than expected in the context of friendships and our communities
How to understand and learn to tolerate our emotions when it comes to interacting with friends and community and how to find meaning in everything—good and bad
Practical steps on fostering really authentic connections, asking for help, and creating inclusive spaces
The power of being direct when reaching out to connect with new people, or friends you’ve drifted from, to foster a deeper relationship
There’s so much value in learning how to meaningfully connect with others and create communities and friendships that celebrate our joyful times and anchor us at difficult times.
We’re back with our “For the Love of Community and Friendship Series, and this week, we delve into an area of friendship that all of us may face, but inevitably dread. It’s that moment when you know a friendship has run its course, or perhaps has become toxic, or you’ve just drifted apart–and you don’t know how to go forward. When life changes, when we change, and a friendship no longer serves us, how do we gracefully (and honestly) communicate about it? Our guest this week, who is here to walk us through this touchy topic, is writer, former standup comedian and political consultant Erin Falconer. Erin’s written a book called How to Break Up With Your Friends: Finding Meaning, Connection and Boundaries in Modern Friendships. Lest you think this is just a conversation on how to wipe your friend slate clean, stick around–you’ll hear Jen and Erin talk about how to create and maintain the healthiest friendships through all the seasons of our lives in order to avoid the painful friend breakup.
They also discuss:
Erin’s “Six Pillars of Friendship” that help us take stock of who is in our life and how we’re serving each other
What to do when we see a friendship has run its course or needs to shift or change in some way
How to keep the source of joy going in our adult friendships, and minimize the pain
It’s tough to grapple with the complexities of friendship breakups, but it all starts with building healthy relationships from the start.
When was the last time you reached out to one of your neighbors? Not just the people you feel comfortable with, but the ones who live near that you might not know beyond a “How are you?” in passing. As we continue our Community and Friendship series, we’re taking a look at why it enriches our lives (and the lives of our neighbors) to invest in the people around us. It doesn’t have to mean they all become our best friends, but a little curiosity, a little paying attention, and a little effort to listen will go a long way in developing the kinds of relationships that make life sweeter. To help guide this conversation, we’re delighted to welcome author and speaker Shannan Martin back to the show! Through her writing, Shannan has revolutionized the way we think about relationships with her refreshing perspectives. She articulates the need for genuine, deep-seated friendships that stretch beyond conventional norms. She also unravels the complexities of forging meaningful connections in our modern world, and her last book “Start with Hello” beckons us toward extending hospitality in ways that might feel awkward at first, but will net us that sense of community and belonging we all long for.
Shannan and Jen discuss:
How Shannan, a self proclaimed introvert, faced her loneliness after she and her family moved from the country to the city by getting outside her comfort zone and making herself available to meet her neighbors
What it means to be deeply embedded in a neighborhood where you are both a good neighbor, and your neighbors are good neighbors to you
How making new friends, no matter how big or small, always starts with a simple “hello” and the small steps towards getting to know someone by making eye contact, paying attention and helping when we can
Shannan and Jen agree that when we reach out beyond our fears, beyond our comfort level, and beyond our borders with radical hospitality, good things start to happen in our neighborhoods which then trickle out to our communities and begin to affect society as a whole. And, be sure to stay with us ‘til the very end–you won’t want to miss a little bonus chat among friends about whether ice cream is healthy for you or not, and what flavors Jen and Shannan swear by.
Hey friends, we are back with another episode in our For the Love of Community & Friendships, and we happen to have a true friend of the show returning to lay down some expertise about what it means to make and keep friends. We’re delighted to have Dr. Marisa Franco, (who also partnered with Jen to create a MeCourse on Friendship) who delves into the fascinating world of friendship attachment styles. Dr. Franco shares her extensive knowledge and insights on how our attachment styles, often formed during our early years, can significantly influence the type of friendships we form as adults. She discusses the three main types of attachment styles—secure, avoidant, and anxious—and explains how understanding our own style can help us navigate our friendships more effectively. Jen and Marisa touch on:
How the three main types of attachment styles can change over time as we typically become more secure as we mature
How, when we’re younger, we tend to have more friends (and friends who are very similar to us) as we look to expand our identity, and when we become more solid in our identity, we’re more open to be friends with people who are different from us
Why friendship doesn’t just typically “happen,”–it takes effort, and some ways you can put yourself out there to make new friends, and how to do the work to keep the friends you already have
How to approach conflict in friendship where we kindly share our needs with a spirit of reconciliation over an attitude of defensiveness
Genuine heart friendships have an incredible impact on our lives, including our health. Many recent studies tout the connection between health and the quality of your relationships, and that loneliness (not to be confused with being alone) can have a negative effect on our health–possibly even bigger than smoking or drinking or poor eating. So is it possible that our friends can actually help save us? Our guest today thinks so; writer and poet extraordinaire Maggie Smith recently went through a divorce and she credits her close knit friend group for being “her parachute” in that process (much like Jen’s friends have been for her as well).
Jen and Maggie discuss these topics around friendship:
The way friends can invest in you in a way that family isn’t able to when you’re going through disruptive life moments
The friends that intuitively know what you need during a rough patch and show up proactively with solutions so you don’t feel so lost
How we can nurture those “life saving” friendships by being a good friend ourselves
Thank God for the friends who remind us of who we are–of our core goodness and worth– when a disruptive time shakes up our identity. They help bring us back to ourselves.
We’re in a brand new series; For the Love of Friends and Community. Friendship and community often serve as the cornerstone for many women’s lives, providing a vital support system that nurtures connection, empathy, and mutual growth. In a recent survey from Psych Central, nearly half of most women report having fewer than 3 close friends, one third report having between 4-9 close friends, and 12% say they have no close friends at all. We know that friendship contributes to more satisfaction in life and is good for our overall health. So what’s the key to finding and keeping friends? How many friends do we need to get those good friend vibes? Our guest this week, author and podcaster Laura Tremaine, has written extensively about friendship, drawing from her own experiences and the experiences of other women she has talked to. Laura wants us to identify, create and nurture these deep connections that we long for. She also teaches us that friendship takes work, and vulnerably shares her friendship fails (yes, even a friendship expert has a few friend misses now and again).
Jen and Laura discuss:
The key qualities that make a friendship meaningful and enduring, and how those things are defined by what you value
A rundown of the things we all may think are important about friendship and looking at the things that aren’t as important as we’ve been made to believe they are
How to navigate friendship breakups and friendships ending, allowing grief over that loss, and leaving room for that vacant “chair” to be filled by someone new
Finding the “fellow obsessive” friend – the one you can geek out about with things that you both love
Creating meaningful friendships is not just about having a social circle. It’s about experiencing true companionship and vulnerability and support. And it’s these soul connections that can bring so much joy and fulfillment to our lives.
It’s another week of our illuminating For the Love of Being Seen and Heard series. We’re talking to people that are doing the life-changing work of helping each other see and hear each other–to see and hear communities that we are not a part of, to see and hear voices that have been traditionally silenced or marginalized, or even to see and hear ourselves in honest and affirming ways. Our guest this week is a powerful advocate, but with a tender heart who works in so many spaces that matter: feminism, racial justice, the arts, activism, self care and healing. Rachel Cargle is a writer and entrepreneur who has created powerful online learning spaces. She’s a regular contributor to Cultured Magazine, The Cut and Atmos. She’s been featured in the New York Times and Forbes as well. Her work centers around an invitation to pursue healing and growth, as well as re-imagining how systems that no longer serve us can be dismantled or changed to embrace justice and liberation. Her belief is that every one of us has power–the power to unlearn, relearn and reimagine–taking ourselves out of stuck spaces and creating places for understanding for everyone. Her thoughts on feminism are so insightful as she looks at how a well intentioned movement for the progress of women leaves out key communities and how reimagining how to see and hear the needs of every woman toward better conditions for all women. This powerful discussion centers around:
An explanation and brief history of the feminist movement and how communities of color often are left behind in this work
How the culture, both inside and outside of black communities often stereotype black women as workers, as strong, as able to bear pain differently than their white counterparts; and Rachel’s work to help black women feel cared for–which leads to an amazing ripple effect on families, organizations and communities
The Loveland Foundation, which gives black women access to black therapists, to self-care and to other resources that are so often not readily or affordably available
Simple ways that women can get involved in the conversation to become clear about this intersection of feminism and race by hearing and telling truths, and to engage in knowledge, empathy, and action.
Sometimes the truth can be hard to process, but when there is intentionality in how we exist in our efforts toward benefitting the condition of women, the result is liberation for all women.
Have you ever had a conversation with a friend or loved one where you couldn’t find common ground about something that fundamentally mattered to you? Is it possible for those relationships to continue, even though you don’t see eye to eye? Today we’re wrapping up our For the Love of Reconnecting series and talking about some of the hardest reconnecting of all: how to stay engaged with and even love someone who thinks differently from us. To guide us through this rocky terrain, we have Rozella Haydée White—AKA the Love Big Coach. Rozella is a theologian, a spiritual life-coach and a leadership consultant who guides people to give and receive love that is life-giving and justice-seeking. Rozella and Jen walk through what it means to lean into the hardest conversations and make space for yourself and the ones you love (or have a hard time loving). Rozella reminds us that, “If we believe that people are created in the image of God, then I don’t really have a choice but to believe in people.”
Over the past year, we’ve had to put our dreams on hold. We cancelled vacations, missed family gatherings, and constantly wondered, How long will my life look like this? But those spaces in our calendars have given us margin to think about what’s next for us. And as we continue our For the Love of Reconnecting series, we’re going to go out on a limb and thinking about what it looks like to reconnect with our dreams. And our next guest, Priyanka Chopra Jonas knows all about that. Priyanka’s a triple-threat: she’s an actor, a social activist and now the author of a brand-new memoir called Unfinished. Jen and Priyanka trace Priyanka’s winding path from India to the US as a teen, and how she’s leapt with both feet into new projects and challenges and discovered that being willing to fail is an important part of leveling up and investing in ourselves. Jen and Priyanka dive into why it’s so important to normalize ambition in women and girls, and why putting boots on the ground is crucial to making our dreams a reality.
Take a peek around
If you’re not sure where to begin, I got you, friend. I’m always bringing you something new to enjoy.