There is so much I want to tell you about this episode about passion. When Kim Gross asked me to be on her ‘Masks Off for People Pleasers and Profectionists’ podcast, I wasn’t sure what would come out. The discussion was just so powerful, I asked if I could rebroadcast it here.
I share candidly my own journey of dimming my light in childhood and what it took me to eventually reconnect with my True Nature. As a multipotentialite with a multitude of interests and skills, I felt pressured by society to limit myself to a specific path, which just leads to suppressing true potential.
Recognizing my deep patters and the inherent forms of self-expression allowed me to find my own unique path. I invite you consider your roles and responsibilities in various life experiences to find your innate way of being, instead of conforming to societal molds.
I hope this episode empowers you to redefine perfection, embrace your many talents, and pursue your Life Purpose.
Kim Gross is the founder/creator of the 5-Step Power Pathway. She helps people pleasers and perfectionists who have spent a lifetime of perpetual suffering because they have identified with these patterns. As the host of the popular podcast “Masks Off For People-Pleasers and Perfectionists” she champions for helping people find out exactly who they are behind the masks they wear.
Topics Covered about passion
- Dimming your light – hiding your talents
- Feeling constrained to choose one passion
- Breaking out of societal expectations
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TRANSCRIPT OF DISCOVERING YOUR TRUE PASSION
Welcome to ReConnect with Plant Wisdom. I am your host, Tigrilla Gardenia, Nature-Inspired Mentor and Leadership Coach. In this podcast, I share ancient and modern knowledge, from biology to spirituality, about the wondrous ways plants can help you lead a Naturally Conscious Life.
Kim Gross and I sat down to talk a little bit about, well dimming your light as a multi potential light. It’s so easy to have so many different interests and skills and passions and things you’re actually good at. And sometimes you feel like you kind of have to turn some of it off in order not to hurt somebody else’s feelings or step on somebody’s toes or you know, give somebody else the spotlight that honestly really was yours to begin with. In this conversation, we really talk about some of the deep patterns and the different aspects of how the plants really helped me work through many of aspects of this and so I wanted to bring it here as an episode in this podcast because I feel like it’s such an important message that we sometimes overlook.
Kim Gross is the founder and the creator of the five step power pathway. She helps people pleasers and perfectionist who have spent a lifetime perpetuating suffering because they identified with these patterns. So she helps guide clients on a journey of self healing so that they can have more meaningful connections and have the courage to create the life they desire. And she does this all on her mask off podcast. Which is really great, so many great interviews, but this one in particular, I think is really going to touch on a few of the heartstrings. So I’m very much looking forward to sharing with you now episode 44 discovering your true passions, my interview with Kim gross so welcome to the show. And why don’t you take this moment to introduce yourself first, let me say this. I’m going to preface by saying as a recovering perfectionist, we’re going to start right out right from the jump that I’m not going to try to be all perfect about how this podcast plays out and try to do everything just the right way. So I’m going to just practice what I preach. And I’m going to allow you to just introduce yourself in your own words sharing your name, so that I don’t botch it and then I don’t have to beat myself up. Being able to say your name perfectly.
I like it. If it’s any consolation. I usually when people ask me my name, I say three different ways.
What we want to talk about today is this whole concept and idea of how as a perfectionist, a people pleaser, a woman a little girl. We can go to this place of dimming our light, where at one point in time we knew inside ourselves in every cell of our being. We knew we felt that we were a hole. We were worthy. We were divine. And that might have showed up or shown up as running around playing laughing jumping in the snow dancing, singing and not giving off fuck about what other people were thinking what other people were saying. We were just being our true nature. And then something shifts. Yep. And we start to dim our light. And I know that you have a story that is similar. So I would love for you to share with me and with the audience. Your story. How you have in the past, watched yourself dim your light around others. Let’s start there.
I love the way that you put it because it is true I think there are periods of our lives. We were so carefree. I’ve always had a lot of energy. I’ve always been super curious. And so I’ve always done a lot of things. I was the chunky kid who still did years of ballet and modern dance and jazz, loved mathematics.
So I was always like advanced and I would get in trouble in class because I learned really fast. So I tend to process things very quickly. And then I would just chit chat and be like the funny one that was kept with everybody and my teachers would constantly write on my like report cards, grasp concepts. Quickly distracts the class after So, literally at one point they took my desk and you know how you have the Blackboard back then it was a blackboard, not a whiteboard, Blackboard at the front of the classroom. They literally put my desk against the Blackboard a little off to the side because I kept disrupting the class because I already understood and knew what they were talking about. At that age. I started to see that this concept of me being fast could be a problem. The fact that so even though I still was going forward with a lot of things I played on a softball team and I wasn’t necessarily great at everything, but I did it you played on the volleyball team for a while and I’m not a good volleyball player. By the way, I can’t jump to save my life. But when I was really young and you just had to dig I was pretty good back then. And so I would just try things I didn’t have a fear of sticking myself into something and seeing where it was. And I got into this place. But then I realized that there was there got to be a point in that journey where I was trying out a bunch of things and the people around me Weren’t they were specializing in certain aspects or worse, they were trying things and weren’t really getting the results that they expected or these other aspects and because I was good at a lot of things. What ended up happening is that in order to support my friends, I would take the things that they didn’t do well. So it’s a really weird dimming your light because it’s not the type where I’m necessarily self sabotaging.
Overall, when you look at it from the outside, I’m not necessarily holding back in everything but what I realized was I was holding back on all the things that my friends were good at, to give them space because I could be good at other stuff. And what ended up happening was that I found myself at some point where I had let go of all of my creative talents. I had never pushed them forward. And I had focused on all my organizational and analytical stuff, because my friends couldn’t do that. Or they didn’t want to do that. I often say I went from being on the stage to being in the shadows to being in the backstage so much so that when I worked with Cirque du Soleil, I was in the backstage even though I had co owned a circus before going to start to slay and had and the same thing had happened there like I had first started where I joined this group of people and I had done some performance stuff. And then I became a tech and I started to move farther and farther back because again, all these creative folks couldn’t do that piece. So I live in a place called Diamond hurt it’s one of the largest spiritual ego communities in the world.
So as part of your spiritual path, at some point, you choose what you call your first law. It’s like you look at yourself not so much as just this life but more completely and you say what are the things that I really need to work on in order for me to be the best me I can be in this lifetime, but taking into account everything. And that was where I finally decided after years of holding myself back from my friends or for fear of shining too bright and other people getting jealous or being afraid and years of standing on stage to do things and then having somebody important in my life, tapped me on the shoulder and say I want to be on that stage. And but you’re so good at this other stuff. Can you do this other stuff so I can be on the stage. And me doing it. I literally had one friend of mine who I love dearly and we did talk about afterwards but she literally got upset with me because I was she was holding back from including me and things that we had started together because she knew I would be better at the part she wanted to do. And it was like and I was so afraid of losing friends because of this and relationships because you can’t shine more than your partner and all these types of things, especially being a woman still taboo, especially in Italy.
And so I finally got to the point where I was like I can’t do this anymore. This isn’t me. And I don’t feel like I’m really fulfilling my life purpose. I like being behind the stage, but I also like being onstage in whatever format that takes. I had created a construct in my head where the reason I couldn’t be on the stage was because I wasn’t as good as the people who only dedicated themselves to the stage and therefore I would embarrass myself. So that was an eye my rather than trying to put understanding that whole thing about my friends and what was going on around me I put it onto myself that it was like so and so does this only therefore I should give them the space because if I go up there because I only do this as part of multiple things that I do being a multi potential eight. I’m going to I’m going to embarrass myself and I can’t embarrass myself that way. So it’s really interesting.
Yeah, let’s break some of that down because you really did hone in on and you underscored two major characteristics. One of the people pleaser and one of the perfectionist and the perfectionist one you just said was I what I heard underneath is I’m not good enough to be on stage and do these particular things because I don’t specialize in it or I’m not specific enough in it so I’m not good enough for that. And what even piggybacks on that is the imposter syndrome. Who am I? To think that I’m good enough to do that when this person over here. They spend so much time and energy specializing in doing this that they are much better at being on stage than I am when I’m just good at everything but not great at one thing so I heard that major sign up perfectionist and then the other one is which I so relate to is this fear of losing friends or relationships for sure showing up out shining being our true selves and this is where we really start to dim the light. I can remember clearly having experiences in high school where if one of my really good friends would say oh my god, you’re so smart. Look at you got straight A’s this quarter. I could remember really downplaying and saying oh but you’re so good at but no, it’s nothing like b You’re so good at this and blah blah blah I would want to make them feel better.
I became a response I was becoming responsible for their feelings. Number one that’s not my job to be responsible for how someone else feels and because I was afraid that I might lose that relationship if I was too smart or too athletic or too popular to whatever. I was afraid to lose that relationship. So I downplayed it. Hmm. I downplay that. Absolutely.
Not only that you make your effort. Try to look effortless. Yeah. And so you’re you downplay more than even just what your accomplishments are. You downplay the entire process. So when you struggle, you try to be quiet about it because people are struggling more than you are. I don’t want to burden them by telling them how hard it is like that I’m struggling or any of that because they’ve got their own stuff to worry about. And I don’t want to up play what I’ve created and accomplished because I don’t want them to feel bad because they haven’t gotten there or I don’t want them to I don’t want to bring this up too much because I feel like they’re gonna find the flaws in it. Even though there’s this amazing piece that I’ve done. They’re gonna find the places where I didn’t do enough or I didn’t do it right or anything like that. And so it’s this weird deck of cards we create for ourselves.
So you’re doing such an amazing job of describing these characteristics of either the people pleaser or perfectionist, and you just described Another characteristic of the people pleaser, which is I don’t want any attention on me. First of all, I’m not going to let you know that I’m struggling. I’m not going to let you know that I have any needs. I don’t have any needs. You know.
I’m self sufficient. I’m you to help you. Yes.
Oh my god, such bullshit. So let’s talk about because let’s talk about how this happens. How do we get to this freaking point? I know from my experience, but let’s talk about it. Because like I started in the beginning of this episode we were all just children, playing in the snow, playing in the leaves, dancing, riding our bikes, feeling the wind in our hair, feeling so free, so uninhibited. And then now we dim our light and we take on these patterns these tendencies to please and perfect. So do you know when the defining moment was for you when it started?
I think it started to shift in a few different ways. One was the fact that as I said, I was like the I was very tall. I’ve always been tall. And so I was tall. I was heavy set because actually I was heavy set for most of my for all of my childhood. So I had this sort of piece of Okay, where am I supposed to fit in and like the scale of schools I wasn’t in the popular beauty type of piece. I was with the nerds but I was a little bit but I had been this creative side.
So I was also with the theater people and I was in this so I think in part it starts because you don’t have a quote unquote clique. And so you feel like you need to dim some piece of you in order to enter into one of those categories that exist. From Earth to pocket a smartphones journey is filled with unfair practices, which is why I was so happy to have found airphone Because today in this modern world, you can’t live without your phone. So if you’re going to have a phone in your pocket, you might as well make sure it is the number one most ecological phone you can have that it’s no secret that Fairphone is off to change the world Fairphone puts people and planet first they care about human rights and worker well being. They care about climate and the planet’s delicate ecosystem and they care about designing a longer lasting product so that rather than having to change it constantly, you can actually upgrade it easily and simply there are be certified company, they have a platinum metal and EcoVadis which is all about the way that they run the company and I fix it 10 out of 10 score. In other words, it is super easy for you to open this up and just change a piece rather than having to throw it out and get something new plus they have a Fairtrade gold integrated standard. So if you’re looking for a new phone, I want to help you get a discount on a Fairphone so click the link in the show notes and get 25 euros off or the equivalent of your currency and get yourself a Fairphone the quality is bar none. The camera is amazing and seriously, you are going to be so proud to share this with your friends and family. I think that’s a little bit different today. But I think in our generation especially as women as girls, there was a lot of you need to find a place to fit in.
You have to identify with some group and I didn’t identify with any group 100% Because I was multi passionate always so I would be with the dancers for a little period of time but I didn’t look like a dancer because I was heavyset, even though I was a very graceful and very flexible and I had all these other pieces going for me but I didn’t have the slender body so I didn’t fit there. I was with like the smart nerds but I was also really good socially so I didn’t fit into what that clique stereotypically fit into. Which is people who are much more awkward. I was a heavy metal girl but I was also smart and heavy metal people should be stupid, which isn’t totally not true by the way. Just don’t believe any of that. That’s crap. That’s what the stereotype so all of these pieces at some point when I was and then eventually when I went to college in particular, I think the beginning of my college years that became very prominent, the fact that I didn’t have both feet into anything. And there is this mythology that gets created and this is where I think many The reason I specialize in my work as a coach and as a mentor. In multi potential lights. And creatives is because there is this mistaken belief that when you have too many passions, it’s because you’re distracted. Instead of thinking No, I actually can be good at a lot of different things. Because I have learned how to expertly weave them together into a series of movements in my life that you might not be able to understand but since I’m connected to my life purpose, I know where I’m going, but it’s very hard for the outside world to see it because they have this idea that longevity in something is the way that you go rather than jumping around. So I at the time when I was younger, it was more like settle down and pick something and it was like why and that was where I think it really started. I think there was a lot of good intentions by people around me like my family and with the idea of helping you concentrate on something. But what they didn’t understand was my real superpower was the fact that I didn’t concentrate on things.
And that is not something that gets especially at a young age, you don’t necessarily give that the weight and the encouragement that it should have and then after that because you don’t have a click when you switch from one group to the other your friends feel betrayed. Like why are you hanging out with that? So I want to go back a little bit to what you’re saying about the multi. What is multi potential light potential lights? I had never heard that word before but I do I picked up on something which is that I do feel society did condition us especially back in our generation because I can remember being told that it’s not a good idea to jump around and have different jobs. I’m talking about part time jobs, when you’re going to get your real job or whatever college you don’t want a future employee or so and so to see that you job hop because that might mean that you’re on reliable or you’re not good at what you do. But that’s such BS like, I feel like I tried to encourage my kids, my daughter’s in college and so she has part time jobs have as many as you can. So you can explore what your interests are, what you’re good at what your talents are. And not only that, but even colleges fall into that trap of declare your major by the time you’re a sophomore. By the time you’re freaking 19 years old. We want you to know what you want to do with the rest of your life.
And if you’re going to have a double major, you should still know that by 1919 freaking years old. That’s a baby still Yeah, no wonder there’s so much pressure on our young adults because they feel like I have to declare and find out and decide what I want to do with the rest of my life now at 19. So it’s what you’re saying is not encouraged to explore and be good at many different things and find a way to weave that all together. I for one follow the path I did. I just did a podcast episode on this. I went to high school, graduated, went to college. Went to get my masters became a teacher because I didn’t know what else to do. And it just felt like I had a lot of teachers in my family. My parents paid for my whole education. I taught for five years and then I got pregnant and I didn’t work outside the home for 24 years. Talk about not debunking the path and going in a totally different direction. Now, I will say this because of the work that I do, and that I’m introspective and I reflect on things. I know that teaching is inherently a part of who I am. I loved playing teacher when I was 789 years old. I was like that that was my most favorite thing to play was teacher I would play with my cousin, but I also played by myself and I’d have my imaginary students and the chalkboard and all of that. And even now, as I do the podcast I am teaching. So I know that it’s in me to teach. But a lot of our young people aren’t really afforded that opportunity to really explore what is it that’s in your heart what is your passion? What do you enjoy doing? I feel like you are doing what you enjoy doing as well. Would you say that you are at this point?
Oh, absolutely. And I think I had the look of the fact that I’m extremely strong willed and I I devise meaning on my own. For example, taking the example that you just gave about the fact that you knew that you were a teacher to me, that is what I call your deep pattern. And this is what I help my clients identify the deep pattern is the way that you express whatever you’re doing at that point. Once you get to that. You can do it in any form. So for a period of time you did it as an actual teacher. For a period of time you did it as a mother for a period of time you did it you’re doing it as now as a podcaster. You’re doing it in all these different ways. But ultimately you are always in order for you to really reach your purpose to really feel like you’re doing something regardless of the actual passion that is being involved. You could be doing art but teaching you could be like being in a with a group of kids being like I don’t know the what’s it called the play date mom but you still find a way to teach. It’s an inherent way of a pattern or what we call Andaman her the element that is you and therefore you’re going to express it in any way you want. Once a person realizes what their element is, they can switch like you said, from passion to passion. So if I was looking at a resume and I see a person that’s switching from job, I’m more looking at the responsibilities that they had the roles that they had, and if the roles and the responsibilities tend to be the same. So like somebody was always either in a leadership role or somebody was always in an individual contributor where they supported the team itself like maybe they were a project manager always you could switch from role to role and but from position to position but I could see that those roles are the de pattern that you express.
And I think that’s one of the ways that we start to shine our lights because it becomes less about whether I’m dancing or whether I’m making art or whether I’m being an actuary, or whether I’m working in a funeral home, but it becomes much more about the pattern that I’m expressing for myself. It didn’t matter, because it’s the pattern that’s important. And that I think is what helps us step into our true light, that authentic light because the light becomes easier to shine. When you realize that it’s something of the archetype that is you rather than the individual passion that you have.
So for somebody that just feels really crappy like they just know they’re not they’re not shining their light they’re not being their true selves. And they don’t even know where to begin. Like they don’t have that big perspective like you just shared with us. What would you say would be like a starting point for someone to start to recognize I would say that a starting point that I often start with my clients is to go towards when you look back and you look at all the things you’ve done, and that could be work experience, family experience, it could be civic work, it could be volunteers, it doesn’t matter even when you were a kid and you were just playing or when you’re playing with your friends. Is there a role you naturally step into? Right?
It’s like when you were a few remember when we used to play Monopoly as a kid, right? There was always the person who always wanted to be the dog, the person that always wanted to be the shoe, the person who always wanted to be like the little car, and there’s a reason for that the car person might have been a person who in any role that they took tended to be the one that went fast, the one that moves the needle forward, the one that was pushing things in another way, the dog might have been a person who was always more of a support person. I’m a person that no matter what role I’m doing in whatever kind of organization or project or even my own personal thing, I’m the support beam. I’m the one people can lean on. I’m the one that encourages others and gives them unconditional love and helps them like just be and that or maybe I’m the shoe I’m the one that’s always there to move step things and to give like balanced so I provide balance, I provide an even keel. And so to look first and foremost as what is the thing that you naturally have always gravitated toward, in whatever position you’ve been in. In life. And from there, then look at that and then see how do you step more into it? How do you let that because that’s where your light is hiding. It’s hiding inside of that doesn’t matter again, if it’s through music or it’s through business or whatever. It that doesn’t matter. What matters is the type of person that you are within it and to shine from there.
So then tell us a little bit more about what you do. You mentioned that this is what you do with your clients.
Yeah, I’m a nature inspired mentor and a personal evolution coach. So my specialization is actually plant intelligence. I work very closely with the natural world because these are the types of deep patterns that we see in nature. We see deep patterns that connect big ecosystems. Certain types of species always carry out these types of patterns, whether they’re doing it with color, or scent, or smell or electrical signals, or any of the other aspects. So my work is really about helping multi potential lights people with so many passions, creatives and what we call nature printers, so people who want to have a business that is connected to the natural world in some way, really I help them design their naturally conscious life. So a life in which they feel like they’re consciously making the choices that help them thrive. So it’s really about finding confidence about understanding your deep patterns, about really thinking about your passions more as tools, rather than expressions of you directly because it is actually your deep pattern, your element that is your real expression. And then how does that get you towards your life purpose? You’re such an interesting person like this has been a very interesting conversation for sure. So how can listeners find you if they want to reach out to you?
I am super easy to find. So I have my website, which is my name tigrillagardenia.com And I also am the founder of something called the naturally conscious community and the naturally conscious community is an online ecosystem where we really work with the intelligence and the wisdom of plants to develop these naturally conscious lives. So it’s a place for us to have hard conversations. It’s a safe space. It’s a space for us to I tend to say actually my I have a podcast myself and the episode that just came out. It’s called How weird is your extraordinary superpower? Because I really believe that we need to create unique paths that take us where we want to be going rather than trying to fit ourselves into the mold, which is I think that perfectionist piece of I’m supposed to fit in here. And so my naturally conscious community is a place for us to look to nature and work with nature to really develop those unique paths to our life people…
Thanks for listening to this episode of reconnect with plant wisdom, Intro and Outro Music by Steve Shuli and poinsettia from the singing Life of Plants. So join me to give you like our Dania and my plant collaborators next time on reconnect with plant wisdom
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Ancient and modern knowledge from biology to spirituality about the wondrous ways plants help you lead a Naturally Conscious life.