May 29, 2020
How many times have you wanted to give up when headed towards a goal, big or small? Are you paying attention to your thoughts when you are frustrated, disappointed, or let down? Our guest this week has a few things to teach you.
Deborah Olatunji sees the problem and looks for a solution. In high school, she was frustrated with her classes and didn’t feel like she could answer the question “What does education mean to me?” so she set out to define that for herself.
Unlike most high school Juniors, Deborah wrote a book about her experience called Unleashing Your Innovative Genius: High School Redesigned. She tells us that the one thing she wants to change about education is what Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie calls “the myth of the single story.” Our schools don’t teach World History, but instead the history of the United States through a white lens (3:40-5:45). When she had this insight, Deborah tackled the problem from multiple angles using an affirmative mindset. Instead of falling into despair and neglecting her studies, he changed the way she learned herself and found new ways into the material while also deepening her relationship with the educators in her life; in this way, she was able to overcome limiting beliefs, find new ways into the material and transform her experience.
Now as she goes into her Freshman year at UPenn with uncertainties about whether she will start on campus or digitally, Deborah rests easy knowing that she is firm in her faith (21:40 to 23:31), clear on her path (32:17 to 34:05) and ready to tackle the uncertainty that life will inevitably throw her way (34:05 to 36:25).
This is an episode about empowering yourself, transforming your own experience and living from a place of purpose.
May 22, 2020
Sophie Beren never quite fit in during high-school, so she forged her own path centered around her most important value: unifying people. She broke out of the small Midwestern bubble of her youth and went to college, promptly joined every Jewish student group possible and discovered in no time that she and her fellow freshman were aligning only with people who had similar interests. In response to this discovery, she formed Table Talk which helped students connect who wouldn’t otherwise meet outside the classroom. She quickly realized that this was “a common cold” on college campuses, so then she scaled it and spread to over 80 high-school and college campuses (9:20 - 12:36). It became clear that this issue was even bigger than those 80 places, so she then created a digital content platform to learn, connect and empathize around these difficult topics: The Conversationalist was born (13:26 to 15:00).
In the second part of our conversation, Sophie opens up and tells us about the challenges of being a young entrepreneur (26:30 to 30:00), her biggest fear (31:30 to 32:30) and ends by opening up to Annmarie about one of her most vulnerable personal truths (34:45 to 36:30).
This is a conversation about conversations, speaking your truth without fear of judgement, getting out of our own way and being vulnerable so other people can too.
May 15, 2020
Ina Bhoopalam grew up in Lincoln, Nebraska, surrounded by people who didn’t look like her, which forced her early on in her life to find ways to communicate across differences. When she encountered bullying in high school, Ina transcended the standard “he said/she said” trap that bullying can so often engender and decided to address the root of the problem by helping others who were being bullied; for her, solving the problem was a coping mechanism and a way to heal her inner Little Ina (20:15 to 23:08).
Ina created DREAM Equal, which is now a non-profit aimed at empowering “all people to realize their full potential regardless of gender;” at first, it was created solely to help young girls from the age of 6 and then evolved to incorporate a more inclusive and intersectional view of gender equality (30:05 to 34:15). Annmarie and Ina agree that the root of our separation is the gender stereotypes that are ingrained in our culture through everything that we see and do (36:15-39:18).
When asked to give advice to those who are bullied, Ina says her advice is actually for both the bullied and the bullied: “Think about what you’re feeling. Think about why you’re feeling it. And then think about the other people who are probably feeling the same way as you. Figure out why they’re also feeling the same way as you. And then start changing the “why” and fix the problem (39:25-40:00).”
May 8, 2020
Laurie Archbold left her corporate job to move to Washington State to connect with nature more deeply and found something called the Compassionate Listening Project, a non profit that teaches powerful skills for peacemaking. Laurie quickly became a facilitator of this work herself, leading training sessions in the United States as well as Journeys, a conflict transformation workshop for Israelis and Palestinians. In this conversation, Laurie and Annmarie discuss what makes some listening “Compassionate” and how we can honor people by deeply listening to what they have to say. She also breaks down the 5 Practices of Compassionate Listening - 1) Cultivating Compassion, 2) Developing Fair Witness, 3) Respecting Self and Other, 4) Listening from the Heart and 5) Speaking from the Heart. Perhaps most powerful, Laurie encourages us to remember that ‘An enemy is someone’s story you haven’t heard.”
Free Compassionate Listening Workshops: https://www.compassionatelistening.org/workshops
April 24, 2020
Alexa was an ambitious and creative 19 year old with high hopes for her future. Sitting in class one afternoon, she noticed a huge lymph node pop up on her collarbone. She had been feeling fatigued and experiencing symptoms like night-sweats and rashes. Putting all of that together, she went to the doctor and a few weeks later she was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Throughout her journey to heal, Alexa learned that trusting her inner voice and being in touch with her own vulnerability were the keys to beating the illness. Alexa is now a published author and spends her days trying to inspire others to take action in their own lives.
On Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/alexacucch
April 17, 2020
This week, Annmarie talks with Rahul Kulkarni, a social entrepreneur who created and runs The Sukhi Project, a mental health advocacy and technology company that seeks to bridge the gap between mental wellness and culture understanding. Sukhi means happy in Sanskrit and that’s what they exist to promote.
Rahul knows how to stay calm in the eye of a storm, trust whatever is occurring, stay focused on his goal and remain flexible and agile when conditions change. Listen in as we explore how he is calling upon his talents, skills and work ethic, combined with his meditation practice, a deep trust in himself and the world to pursue his passion and fulfill this vision to build a bridge between peoples cultural background and mental health.
The Sukhi Project Website: https://www.thesukhiproject.com
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/thesukhiproject
April 3, 2020
On this week’s episode, Annmarie checks-in with Ashwath Narayanan and Ethan Somers, students from George Washinton Unviversity and co-founders of Culture Media Co, on the Coronavirus pandemic and how it’s affected their lives and business.
They discuss our collective lack of freedom, how uncertainty is feeding fear and the role technology has played in helping us stay connected in a time of disconnection. They also walk us through some of their daily routines amidst the disruption, discuss the importance of getting comfortable with being uncomfortable and remind us that everyone else is in a similar state of disarray.
Culture Media Co: https://www.culturemedia.co
More Ashwath: https://www.instagram.com/ashwathhhh
More Ethan: https://www.instagram.com/ethanjsomers
March 27, 2020
Carleigh Berryman grew up in a family of wildly successful entrepreneurs who valued and appreciated the older generations. In college, Carleigh resisted the tempting urge and social pressure to pursue a lucrative Marketing Consultant path and instead successfully secured seed money for a unique virtual reality company for seniors.
In American culture, we spend very little time investing in our elderly populations. Her company - Viva Vita - is a tech-enabled services business that disrupts that impulse by selling virtual reality tours as an activity to retirement communities to bolster their activities calendar, appear attractive to future customers and to engage their populations in a novel way for better mental wellness.
In this interview, we discuss the formation of Viva Vita, what it takes to stand up for your idea (even when it’s not popular), the challenges of entrepreneurship, the value of a strong mentor and how to take care of yourself through all of that.
Carleigh is a rare breed, both a head and heart-centered leader who encourages people to be open to the world, embrace uncertainty, work hard with genuine passion and, most important of all, care deeply about your work.
More Viva Vita: https://www.vivavita.org
More Carleigh: https://www.carleighberryman.com
March 19, 2020
Hawat Kasat has spent each moment of his life trying to leave the world a little better than he found it. He identifies as an Artist, Author, Educator, Yoga Instructor, Community Organizer, and Non-profit Leader; in our interview, however, he reveals that he most identifies with the label of Poet.
In this episode, Hawah tells us about his experiences on the front-lines of social activism early in his life, as well as the time he spent in India learning how to meditate. Both sets of experiences - the political and contemplative - created a visionary leader who now runs One Common Unity, a non-profit he co-founded over 18 years ago that supports peace education and the building of a non-violent culture through music and art.
We learn that the common threads in all of Hawah’s experiences are curiosity, consciousness and joy. And while he always feels like there is more to be done, there’s no question that he’s an example to us all for how to make a positive impact on the world.
More Hawah: https://hawah.us
March 13, 2020
This week, we continue our two-part conversation with Fran Roth, from the wildly popular Instagram account How Do You Adult?
We start this episode by walking through Fran’s college experience and how she navigated that time with authenticity, vulnerability and, ultimately, a trusting relationship with her own feelings. Fran then opens up about her relationship with her boyfriend and gives us excellent advice about how to adult rin work and life. She closes with her definitions of success, happiness and a vision-cast for the future of her Instagram account.
Follow Fran: instagram.com/howdoyouadult
March 6, 2020
Fran Roth started sketching her feelings as a hobby and her friends told her what she was making was really good. As the doodles grew in popularity online, Fran followed her impulse to buy an iPad to create more digital drawings, got an instagram account and the rest is history. Her wildly successful account How Do You Adult? now has nearly 195,000 followers and that audience grows daily.
Annmarie and Fran talk about feeling your feelings, managing anxiety, the purpose of panic, how to communicate your desires with respect and creating space for our fullest and most authentic expression.
Follow Fran: instagram.com/howdoyouadult
February 23, 2020
Mark your calendars - Season 2 of YOUNIVERSITY kicks off on Wednesday, March 4th with Part 1 of a two-part special episode featuring Fran Roth, the creator of the wildly popular Instagram page HOW DO YOU ADULT.
In the meantime, enjoy this trailer that looks back at last season and forward to what we're cooking up next.
November 29, 2019
One anecdote to stress, anxiety and overwhelm is to bring more conscious play into your day. This week we are talking about the importance of balance between work, rest and play! So many of us forget to play and think play is not important as grown-ups. We take everything so seriously! We believe we don't have time to rest, relax, play, and chill out, so we push ourselves until we get sick, overwhelmed or exhausted. When we honor our need to rest, renew and play we re-charge and maximize our energy. We are then more available for creativity, innovation, well being and productivity. The play brings us back to a state of flow.
November 15, 2019
We are exploring appreciation and what it really means to pay attention to the things we are grateful for. What you appreciate grows or increases in value. Listen in this week as I talk about the power of appreciation. I show you HOW to cultivate gratitude and talk about why it can help reduce the stress, overwhelm and anxiety we all experience. When we feel good, we are in a far better space to do good. Join us in the challenge. Take 2 minutes a day to sit quietly and reflect on ONE thing you are feeling grateful for. Just ONE thing a day. And notice how you feel, and maybe let us know.
November 8, 2019
Annmarie and Adam talk about the importance of empowering yourself and getting friendly with your negative thoughts.
October 31, 2019
This week, we are back with Emma Seslowsky, who shares her journey from first-year to post-grad. In episode 52, Emma shared her struggle with anxiety and depression in her first year at Boston University. In this episode, we are back celebrating how she used her experience with anxiety to get to know herself better, shift and become a more honest authentic expression of her true self. Emma talks about coming out, being kind to yourself, and what it really means to be successful. Emma also shares advice for after graduation, and her formula for how to make time for your passions while working your day job.
October 24, 2019
This week, I want you to meet Emma Seslowsky, a Boston University grad living in Manhattan who is following her passions while working in the real world after dealing with pretty serious anxiety and depression in college. If you have ever had thoughts like “I’m not good enough, I’m the dumbest person here, I don't belong here. No one really likes me?” you will want to listen in this episode.
On this episode, Emma openly shares how those debilitating thoughts got in the way of her ability to function in her day to day life and what she did to overcome that, and she shares some great tips with us on how to deal with your negative thought patterns and turn them around to free you to be your best self in school and in life. This is a 2-part series, so enjoy part one with Emma…
October 17, 2019
We all say we want more genuine and authentic relationships, but are we really ready to step up and take responsibility for BEING genuine in our own life. It can be scary to show up with all our parts, good, bad, positive and negative. And when we are afraid, we tend to hide. While this makes perfect sense, it does not get us the thing we are ultimately seeking. Inspired by our conversation with Meredith, this week Adam and Annmarie talk about what it really means to BE genuine, and Annmarie shares some quick tips for how to show up more authentically in your life.
October 11, 2019
Meet A Genuine girl, TSU Sophomore Meredith Mistrot, who started A Genuine Girl podcast midway through her freshman year after realizing that while she seemed to be taking all the right steps and doing all the right things, she was not actually creating what she was most seeking: authentic and genuine friendships.
Meredith shares with us her path to realizing she was not really truly happy, why she left her sorority and how she put herself on a path to creating the authentic friendships that were right for her. We also talk about how following your 'shoulds' don’t always get you where you want to go and how listening to that still small voice within is a path to learning how to truly trust yourself in school and in life.
October 3, 2019
Inspired by how Emery Bergmann handled her messy roommate, Annmarie and Adam talk about the difference between context and content, and the value in knowing the difference.
If you are committed to success in your life, creating the conditions for you to truly thrive is vital. Where you live and who you live with matters, but HOW you are living together is fundamental to your ability to focus and succeed.
If you want to be able to put your energy on academics, career, relationships, health, and your well-being, you must protect home base. Having a place to go and feel comfortable, at ease and at peace is one key ingredient to a successful and fulfilling life.
On this episode learn why how you are being with those you live with can contribute to calm or conflict.
September 26, 2019
This week, Emery and I talk about how to be drama free with your roommates. Whether you are sharing your living space with a good friend or a perfect stranger, it can be hard to live with other people. Your living situation can make or break your quality of life, and ability to focus and succeed.
If you don’t have a place to go to feel comfortable and find some peace life can become very stressful. Emery shares her solution for managing a messy roommate and how she stayed sane, even with moldy yogurt hanging around.
September 20, 2019
In this mini-episode, Emery Bergmann and I discuss the pros and cons of Greek life and what she has learned about herself through the process.
Emery shares why she decided to rush despite her fear that Greek life was not for her and what it was like to be rejected by her first choice sorority.
Listen in to hear more about why staying open and curious about the process helped Emery land in just the right community.
September 12, 2019
Starting school or perhaps a new job? Finding your people, making friends and building community is a big task and can be scary. In this mini-episode, we revisit Emery Bergmann who shares her tips for overcoming fear and putting your best foot forward on the path to finding your people and creating a community you love in college and beyond. For more on the college transition with Emery, check out episode 3.