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Finding Your Purpose and Living A Thriving Life with Rev. Edie Weinstein
We have Edie Weinstein with us. Edie, welcome to our show.
Thank you. I’m honored to be here.
Many entrepreneurs are trying to find their purpose and live a thriving life. What do you have to say about that?
First of all, I’ve always known my purpose. I’ve been one of those blessed few to know that my purpose is to be a communicator. My mother would always say that I started talking at six months and never stopped. I communicate in verbal form by doing therapy with people and presentations. I communicate in written form with my articles and books. I encourage people to find their passion. Purpose is a scary word like, “What if I don’t know my purpose? What does that mean?” Find what turns you into a human sparkler. It’s the way that I describe it. What lights you up from the inside? It could be art, relationships, travel or finding a cause. Whatever it is that feels natural to you, that you can’t not do, that’s in the back of your purpose and passion.
We were talking a little bit about the crisis. Tell me what your thoughts are about that.Know your worth. Ask for it without stuttering. Click To Tweet
The best definition of crisis is a crossroad, a turning point and a decision-making point. For some people, a crisis could be the end of a relationship or death. In my case, it was a series of illnesses. The first one started in 2013 when I had shingles on the left side of my face. I looked like a Klingon on the left side of my face. It was messy. That was a wake-up call to slow down and do you think I listened? I gave lip service to it. Being a recovering workaholic, I said, “I’ll be okay.” That was in November of 2013. In June of 2014, on my way home from the gym after having a pretty intense workout where I hung out five to six times a week, I had a heart attack. I was 55 years old. That was a wake-up call. My friends and family said, “You’ve got to listen now.” A month later, I had kidney stones. I started a new job at an event that I was covering kidney stones and then adrenal fatigue.
A year or so later, there were more kidney stones and then pneumonia. Those series of health crises were those ongoing wake-up calls. The change that I engaged in was learning to say no, knowing that no is a complete sentence. I was sleeping more. Back when I had a heart attack, I was sleeping maybe five or six hours a night for two years, working twelve to fourteen-hour days as a therapist in a drug and alcohol rehab and as a journalist. I wasn’t taking care of myself. I hit a wall. Don’t wait for that to happen. I’m coming up on my fifth cardioversary. I go to the gym maybe three or four times a week now instead of five or six. I take naps and say no. I eat veg a little bit more. I’m learning to practice what I preach.
We’re glad that you listened to the warning signs but as a therapist, we have so many business owners, I heard drug and alcohol, how can you say no? There are people in crisis and people that need us. I feel like it should be taught how to diplomatically set a boundary in elementary school. What can you say to people that feel like they have to do it all to make it work?
First of all, I would take a look at why they feel they have to do it all. In my case, I became a consummate caregiver. The parents took care of everybody, the family, friends and their parents. They seem like they could do it effortlessly. I felt like I had to emulate them. I felt like I had to tap dance, not to earn approval but to keep from losing it. I encourage people to take a look at why they don’t say no. Some people are taught that you’re not allowed to say no. Other people get to make decisions for you. Fortunately, I wasn’t taught that. One of the things that I do is I teach workshops on consent, especially in the light of the #MeToo and all the crises around who gets to touch you and when, why and how. It’s important for all of us, no matter what gender, to learn that if it isn’t yours, don’t touch it. Even if it is, if you’re in a relationship, ask first.
We assume consent and we can’t. Some people are comfortable with touch and some people aren’t. Saying no may have to do with touch or, “Am I willing to take on this another responsibility? Am I willing to listen beyond the point where I can do something to help people? Am I willing to renegotiate?” That’s an important skill too. I would have said yes to anything anybody asked me because it made me look good or because I had the skills to do it, but I was all give-out. A lot of the people reading feel all give-out, whether they’re personal or professional caregivers. Learn what you are willing to do and what you’re not willing to do. Keep agreements as best you can. If you can’t, renegotiate. It’s okay to do that. Those are little tidbits that I encourage clients and students that I work with to say, “I have the right to say yes or no at my own discretion.”
I think that’s a key because so many times people don’t show up or at the end they leave you hanging because, “I don’t want to call Edie and tell her I can’t do it.” In the end, I call you with the lamest excuse. Why not call and say, “Edie, it did not happen this weekend. It doesn’t look like I’m going to have it done until Friday. I know I said now. What can we do?”
The cool thing is the people in my life know that they can renegotiate if they need to as long as I know. I’ve learned that the hardest part for me is not wanting to let people down and I’ve learned to say, “I can’t do it this time but I can do it tomorrow at this time.” Things happen. There are times when I don’t have the energy. Even now, a few years after the heart attack, there are times when I’m wiped. That whole metaphor about the airplane that we’re told put the oxygen mask on yourself first because you can’t put one on somebody else if you passed off from oxygen deprivation. For years, I was, figuratively speaking, passed out from oxygen deprivation and with a heart attack, literally. Also with pneumonia, I need to have an oxygen mask. That’s not fun. I don’t want that again.
What advice would you give to someone that does want to make an impact and is running a business? What have you learned in your career and what advice would you give them?
Focus on what you feel passionate about, what you can’t not do. What I like to say is I can’t not write. I could do it all day long if I could. I don’t get a writer’s block. I get writers runs. Think about, “What is it you can’t not do? What are you willing to put your heart and soul into?” For the people who are reading, if they want to make a difference in the world and be a greater force for good in the world. What is the special talent that you want to share with the world? It doesn’t mean that you give it away. Many of us that are in the helping professions feel like, “I shouldn’t get paid to do what I do because it’s a gift from God.” It’s all a gift from God. Mechanics have a gift from God. Doctors do. They don’t say, “I’ll fix your car for free,” or “You can come to the hospital for free,” or “I’ll see you in my office for free. Those of us that do in “spiritual work” or holistic work and those of us that are entrepreneurs sometimes feel like we shouldn’t get paid as well as. I call BS on that.
We have the same bills that anybody else does. When you hire somebody, like an entrepreneur, you’re hiring them not just for what they’re going to do for you that day but their education, training, background and experience. I’ve been at this work in one form or another for 40 years. I’m 60 now. I started doing counseling a couple of years ago. When people hire me, they’re paying for all of that experience. When people hire anybody else listening, they’re paying for the things that you’ve learned in all the years that you’ve been doing what you’ve been doing. That’s important too. Know your worth. Ask for it without stuttering. I had a coach a number of years ago who encouraged me to raise my rates in one of the areas of my life. He said, “You’re going to ask for it without stuttering.” I do. If we don’t know our worth, how is anybody else going to accept and appreciate it?If you are in business for yourself, enhance your knowledge base and be willing to be teachable. Click To Tweet
One quote that came into my mind was something I learned from a lawyer. She said, “I’m charging you $500 for a half an hour to do it because you’re paying for the ten years that it took me to learn to do this in half an hour.” If I had to do it, it would probably take eight hours of research to figure out how to do the same task. It’s the whole worth of the person and the whole experience, not just the time that we’re looking at.
I’m learning something new every day. I’m a lifelong learner. I learn from my students, my clients and everybody I cross paths with. As a licensed social worker, I’m required to take 30 continuing education credits every two years. I’m always enhancing my knowledge base. That’s the other thing too. If you are in business for yourself, enhance your knowledge base. Learn the state of the art whatever it is and the trends. Be willing to be teachable. I’m not a tech savvy person so I know who to hire to handle my website and my promotion because I can do it, but there are other people who are even better at it than I am. Pick the brains of people mutually. That’s the other thing too. My wise father used to say one hand washes the other. I’m a giver but I’m also learning to be a receiver. I can’t tell you the number of people every week that ask, “Can I pick your brain about? Can you tell me how to? Who is a good resource for that?” If I charged for all of that, I’d be a gazillionaire. If you’re going to ask somebody for their advice and support, be willing to be supportive of them too.
How do our readers find out more about you?
There are two ways. One is my website. It’s www.Opti-Mystical.com. Where that came from was a number of years ago, I got this download. That’s the other thing too as a businessperson, trust your intuition. The download was you’re not just an optimist. You’re an optimistic who sees the world through the eyes of possibility. That’s my website and it’s where you’ll learn about all the things, the many hats that I wear. I’m also on Facebook under Edie Weinstein. I post a whole bunch of articles. You get free content on my Facebook page. All the articles that I write show up on my Facebook page. They’re everything from relationships, spirituality, sexuality, politics, business and life.
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About Rev. Edie Weinstein, MSW, LSW
Rev. Edie Weinstein, MSW is a graduate of the New Seminary in New York City, Reiki Master and an ordained Interfaith Minister assigned to the staff of The Interfaith Temple.