Ever felt overwhelmed by life’s daily pressures to the point of paralysis? Or maybe you’ve yelled at your kids (once or twice!) and later regretted it.

In this episode of the Think Tank of Three podcast, we introduce Melanie McNamara, a life coach with a mission to transform your frantic moments into focused milestones. With her unique blend of intersectional and feminist theory lens, Melanie guides us through the landscape of internal triggers, the storms we face as parents, professionals, and individuals, and the power of confidence even in the thick of it.

As an expert in coaching women through life’s unexpected turns, Melanie unpacks the virtue of emotional resilience and the importance of recognizing our thought patterns that often hold us back.

This episode is a journey from chaos to calm, frantic to focused, as co-hosts Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris and Julie Holton share raw and authentic discussions with Melanie. Prepare to be empowered with strategies that will not only help you find your lost items but also rediscover your lost peace!

You can now watch the Think Tank of Three Podcast on YouTube and Spotify, and listen on all major podcast platforms. Be sure to subscribe! Our direct links are here.

Think Tank of Three Podcast Transcript: Frantic to Focused: Finding Inner Strength with Melanie McNamara

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: I’m really excited about today’s show because I had an incident with my son in the car this morning, taking him to, um, camp and he dropped an air pod that he had, uh, in the car. It’s in the car. It’s somewhere in the car. But when I got back to the car, cause I was taking his sister into a friend of hers.

He’s like out of the car, frantic, like on the verge of tears. And I’m like, what’s the problem? What’s going on? I dropped my iPod. I dropped my iPod. I’m like, okay. I’m like, you dropped it where? It’s, it’s, it’s in the car. It’s under the seat. I’m like, okay. All right. We’ll give it a quick look. I go looking for it.

I can’t find it. I really don’t have the time. So I’m not putting my full effort into it. My shoulder’s messed up. So I don’t even have full reach right now. We’re in the car. And I’m like, why do you look like you’re on the verge of just a complete collapse? It’s my pod. It’s my mom. I said, I get it. I get it.

It’s your air pod, dude. It’s not like I drove over it with the car. You didn’t lose it in a river. It’s not in a field. It’s physically. In the vehicle. Yes. You just don’t understand. And I’m getting so frustrated. So this is that long story around how our family can trigger us without trying.

Julie Holton: In that moment, you’re like, you’re right.

I don’t understand.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: I love you. And then I’m listening to myself get loud. I’m like yelling at him at one point, like, stop it, hit in the car. Why are you freaking, why am I freaking out?

What is the reality that’s going on here? So we finally, both of us got calm. I actually apologized to my son. I said, I apologize for getting away too emotional about this because at the end of the day. Yeah. What you’re looking for is in this car. We just have to find it. And I really shouldn’t have gone all the way.

I said, but son, sometimes you just can find that way to get me going. And he still couldn’t, he finally got himself calm. I got him off to camp. He let it go. And, but I know when I pick him up, the first thing he’s going to say is, did you find my air pod? And so I know we’re talking about how to, you know, all kinds of different things and dealing with relationship and dealing with how to handle yourself and how to handle other things.

So I thought I’d throw that one out there.

Julie Holton: love this Rish because on today’s show, you and our listeners, but you are going to get real time, real life coaching from a woman who I know very well. Personally, she is determined to empower other women. To create that inner strength when you need it most, like when you’re trying to find AirPods and in fact, when you don’t even really care, you’re just trying to like calm the situation.

But how many, how many storms like that do we have every day, big or small, moments throughout the day that trigger us in life, as parents, at work. And, and how our thoughts really shape our reality. I mean, in that moment for your son, his reality was that device that he just loves and needs in his life was gone and gone forever.

And it’s never ever. And his thoughts were just creating this panic in him that created a panic in you of trying to

Melanie McNamara: just

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: calm him down. Yeah. But how can you calm someone down when you’re panicking yourself because you’re panicking about the fact that he’s panicking? It’s just a vicious circle. It’s just, you know, it’s just a vicious circle.

Confidence, however, wins that race. So we’ll see what’s going to happen with this. It’s

Julie Holton: so much easier said than done. But let’s do this. Let’s get our guest on the show today. The think tank of three starts

Melanie McNamara: now.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: Oh, all right. You heard me say it just a second ago. Confidence wins the race, but it’s so much easier said than done right on today’s show. Real time coaching from a woman determined to empower and to create, uh, that inner strength for others. Oh, this is exciting.

Julie Holton: We are so glad you are with us. Welcome to the think tank of three podcast.

I am Julie Holton here with my co host Rishi, a candidate capasaurus. Our third today is a life coach. She is a woman whose passion is to help other women design a life. That feels as successful on the outside or on the inside as it looks on the outside. How often do you feel like people are looking at you like you’re so successful, you have all these things, but inside you’re like, I don’t have shit or I don’t have the things I

Melanie McNamara: want.

I’m a hot mess. Yeah.

Julie Holton: And so her focus is really taking what that appearance is on the outside and helping us to feel that on the inside, Melanie McNamara coaches through an intersectional and feminist theory lens. Melanie, welcome to the show.

Melanie McNamara: Thank you so much, Julie and Risha. And oh my gosh, that, that example you just provided is a beautiful thing.

We’re going to get to dissect today. Like that was a perfect story. I was just laughing and nodding and also going, yep, I see it. Let’s show you where it’s coming from.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: So good. I tell you, uh, on this show, you know, we love dissecting perfect word, uh, the many facets of identity and things that make us gender, race, class, sexual orientation, disabilities, everything that influences our individual experiences in life.

We get into that stuff. And in fact, my son, you know, um, Is, uh, on the spectrum, on the ASC spectrum, he’s high functioning, but I also have to remind myself and my, my husband and I have to remind one another, his mind works a little bit different. You got to remember that you got, and I have to keep playing that over and over because my daughter is, is typical, my, my, my younger one, she’s typical.

So there is a difference in how we, uh, interact with both of these individuals. And I need to remember, it’s like, okay, there’s, there’s something else going on within his reality of my world is over because the air pod I dropped didn’t drop out of the car in a river. It’s in the car, but I got to bring him into that reality.

Um, how did these things tie into your coaching specifically, what is intersectional and. Feminist theory lens. What you that is something that’s within what you do. What does that mean? Yeah,

Melanie McNamara: so for me, it’s, it’s intersectional is taking into account. First of all, I know nothing about anyone else’s experience, right?

Um, the way they were raised, whether, you know, their gender, their, um, ethnicity, their race, their identity. Yeah. Yeah. You know, family of origin, whatever that is, like, we’re all so different and varied. And then all these things converge, like, um, any kind of neurodiversity or disability, um, whether it’s visual or, or non vis, you know, like we can see it or we can’t see it.

Um, how all those things come together. Is what makes us all so very unique. And then the feminist theory part of it is just recognizing the role, the traditional roles of, um, male, female men, women that we’ve seen that have been around for millennia and like how it’s ever evolved and everything. But, um, the messages we received growing up again from society, our culture, and our family.

Depending on what our, um, you know, gender is at birth assigned gender at birth. So

Julie Holton: what I love about your feminist approach is that it’s very similar to how Risha and I approach it on the show, because I think many times we’re very reluctant to even call ourselves feminists or to label the podcast in any kind of way.

We are just here as women who experienced life as women. We’re sharing with other women and we have men and. In our audience and nothing about our topics or our focus is meant to bash men in any way. And Melanie, one of the things that I really appreciate about you is you talk about how the patriarchy also impacts men and it impacts how, you know, everything from how they’re raised to how they interact in society.

It impacts all of us. And oftentimes it’s the awareness and education that brings about the changes that we want to see. And I think It’s so important to put a voice to it because oftentimes we’ll look at we’ll look at this and it almost seems like we’re blaming men for the way that society is and we’re not there just as much victim to, you know, what, you know, the, the kind of, um, the systems that are placed on them as well.

Can you talk

Melanie McNamara: about that? Yes. And I’m so glad that you mentioned it because just a side story real quick. We were at like an event in our neighborhood, like a barbecue, you know, get to know your neighbor kind of thing. I was chatting with this, with this guy and. I said, he asked what I did. I said, Oh, I’m a feminist life coach for women.

And he said, Oh, and I could just feel he immediately 10 stop. He goes, Oh, are you one of those feminists who bash on men and hate men? And I’m like, not in the least. I love men. I love all the men, right? I’ve got a dad, I’ve got a husband, I’ve got two sons, all the, you know, whatever, it doesn’t matter. But.

It’s about how it does like recognizing the water we’re swimming in, you know, the air we’re breathing, like we don’t notice the air until we actually become aware of it and how it does hurt men. So like, so for example, just one, one, one or two ways is men are. Are pretty much programmed from the beginning that you are the caretakers and you take care of your family.

Right. And so, um, one of my friends tells a story of how, when her husband lost his job through no fault of his own downsize, it rushed him. He felt like I’m no longer a man. I can’t provide for me. They were perfectly fine, but he, he was so crushed by that. And, you know, or like, you know, Boys shouldn’t cry or show emotion.

You should be strong. I guess anger is an okay emotion for men, but, but you’re not allowed to cry and you’re, you know, and it’s like we have emotions are a huge part of what I do. Although I do thought work. It’s the, it’s the, um, intersection of thought work with the emotional work. And when men aren’t allowed quote unquote, to feel their feelings.

It creates not, some not good scenarios for them and the other people around them.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: Unhealthy. Um, it’s, it’s, it is interesting how you just do kind of fall into those roles. And Julie, you and I, we’ve, we’ve discussed this and we discussed this earlier in other podcasts about. I, I kinda have that understanding of, I hate to sound like, yeah, I, you know, I get men, but there is a part of that male brain that I totally get because I experienced it.

When you think to yourself, when you’re confident and you’re, you’re locked into what you’re doing. And, you know, I had my whole television career and my life was in check. I had my list going, everything was going the way it was supposed to be going. I remember Julie, I was saying like, and I remember even when I was trying, you know, thinking about my, my future with my husband or who that person was going to be.

I wasn’t looking for someone who was going to support me. I just needed them to be an equal partner with me. So I, this was my mindset. I think my mom. And that, that helped me really with, with the independent side of things. But the problem was I on my own went so far into like the career side of everything that when my career went away and not fight by choice, I did not know what to do.

All of a sudden, I really didn’t have, um, a definition of self anymore. And it took me a really, really long time. To get out of that because it was, I, I, I, without even realizing it, I was defining myself by my career, by my ability to take care of myself and not need anybody to help that.

Julie Holton: And Rish, I think too, it’s so important to point out, like, as we like dissect you for a moment, like you also, so look at this.

I, cause I think, I think this is really relatable for a lot of women, but also it’s important to point out you were, you were thriving in a man’s world. I mean, let, let’s be real, the broadcasting world is very male driven you. And you weren’t just in broadcasting as I was, I was in news. You, you were the anchor at ESPN.

You were in. sports. So, and you’re an athlete, you, your whole life has been very, um, like you’ve been surrounded by men. And so you fit right in with your confidence, with your ability to stand on your own and, and to stand up for yourself, to have a successful career. And then you transitioned from that to a son and a daughter.

So suddenly you’re in this nurturing motherly role, which you’re very good at. And also is very different from that independent world that you had been living in. So now you’re a wife, you’re a mother, you have a son who has special needs and your world. I mean, I don’t know that you can get much different from one world to the other with such a drastic

Melanie McNamara: transition.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: Right, right. And maybe that, maybe that’s. That’s why certain things like will, will, will for lack of better term trigger, right? Because you don’t realize, you don’t even realize what’s underlying, which is how Melanie can get into that.

Melanie McNamara: Yeah. One thing that came up when you were talking is, you know, separating out role from identity, right? Like you had identified with your role and whether it’s the type of role that you were in or a stay at home mom, when a stay at home mom, she identifies herself. So. Uh, strongly with being that, and then the kids go off to college and whatnot, or leave the house.

Suddenly she’s left. Yeah. Now what? And she’s left feeling empty and like, wait, who am I? And so I, that’s where so many of us get to that point. And again, it goes to like, what is your background? Sometimes it doesn’t matter. We still have the same patterns of thought oftentimes. So, yeah. And we don’t

Julie Holton: have to go through this alone.

I think that’s what, what the, if there’s one thing that people take away from this podcast episode, it’s that we don’t have to navigate this journey alone. In fact, Melanie and I are working together. We started working together a few months ago because of this very reason. Not that I’m not, I’m not changing careers.

I’m not, I haven’t, I don’t feel like I’ve lost my identity. But I look ahead at the transitions I want to make and preemptively, I’m already thinking, well, wait a minute, I don’t want to lose sight of what. I want as a person, you know, in the last year and a half, I, I have a partner. I have a stepson with special needs.

I have a second business that recently launched. I have all of these really amazing and wonderful things happening. And at the end of every day, I’m exhausted. Just trying to figure out where do I focus my time? Do I have any time for me? What does that even look like? And sometimes I, I hate to even voice it because it, it’s a very privileged life that I live.

Although I’ve come to hate the word privilege, but we’ll save that for another podcast. But I recognize the, I recognize what I have and every day I’m grateful and giving thanks for what I have. I also recognize that this is effing hard. Like this is not easy and none of it is for anyone, whether we’re on our way up or we’re falling to the bottom, like wherever we are in this.

journey, it is hard. And there are days with our son, um, and reach. And I have a lot of conversations about this where I just feel like, Oh my gosh, I am failing in every possible way. And, and I know that’s not true, but it’s like, we just need that person sometimes, or people, that community, that tribe to grab a hold of.

And Melanie has been that for me in the last couple of months, as I figure out on the business side, what does balance look like, how do I determine what? What’s right for me, not just what’s right for me as a mom, as a partner, as a business owner, but me as an individual, because I can see, and I would reach, I was, I totally relate to you.

When I, when I was in the process of leaving news, I had, there was a time in my career where I was at a really. Really toxic station, TV station. And there were, um, layoffs coming. I was able to leave prior to that. I can’t say much because I, you know, signed an NDA, but let’s just say I found myself, um, with severance and out of a contract and figuring out, I had a few months to figure out.

What am I going to do? Am I going to stay in news? I’d already been in news for 12 years. I was feeling the burnout. I wanted to leave. I didn’t know what I could possibly do. My identity was an executive TV news producer, an Emmy award winner, and I did not know who I was without that. And I, you know, and it’s a process.

And I actually, at one of the stations, I finally figured out at that time that the best thing for me was, was to find another job in news. Cause that’s what I knew. And I could use a healthy station to help me transition out and figure out what was going to come next. But during that process, I interviewed at a station and the general manager was almost like a grandfatherly type person who.

Like we ended up just having this very personal conversation about detoxing and what that was going to look like coming out of that toxic newsroom and figuring out who I was and who I was without all of that toxic environment around me. Um, and I don’t even know why I just went off on that tangent, but it’s just, you know, there are so many transitions that we make in life and making sure that we know who we are.

And Melanie, I know that’s a really big, big part about your coaching, that it really comes back to you often will repeat to me things that I have said in prior conversations to pull back out of me, um, you know, what it is that you see in me. So tell us about this journey. What is it about coaching women?

What is it that has inspired you to even take this path? Yeah.

Melanie McNamara: So, There was something I wanted to say before I even told you that about, um, trusting ourselves. So let’s think, let’s talk about for a second, you know, women, if you think about it, we are taught from a very young age, we can’t trust our own judgment.

And for example, looking at all the magazines, we ha we have to be taught how to dress, how to look, how to act, how to get a man, how to keep a man, you know, all these things. And so it makes a lot of sense. sense that if we identify with our role, and then that role is no longer there, we’re floundering. And then we can, we start looking outside of ourselves for the answers.

So when I take you back to something you have said, it’s to bring you back to your own inner wisdom, right? Because we have that, we have that inner wisdom. But we’ve been, it’s been socialized out of us or, you know, whatever reason for whatever reason we forget that we can tap into that. And we really do have the answers.

So as a coach, that’s what I help women find. I help them peel off all the layers of. Do we swear on this podcast?

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: Julie already has a couple. I

Julie Holton: mean, you just peel off

Melanie McNamara: all the layers of bullshit. And then it’s like, Oh, there it is. There it is. And trusting that, that gut feeling you get. If it holds you back, it’s like, okay, the question is this fear or just nor like normal fear, or is this going against everything that my inner wisdom is telling me so dissecting all of that.

So I just wanted to put that in there for a little nugget for everyone, but what started me. Um, is, oh my gosh, the limiting, I’ll call them limiting beliefs because I bet your audience has definitely heard that term before the limiting beliefs I had placed on myself my whole life. From the outside, I seemed very successful.

I had a, you know, a really great career. Um. You know, my marriage looked like, Oh, we are this powerhouse kind of couple in our, in our industry. I was in real estate and, um, I felt like I was just slugging through life. I felt trapped. I, I was in looking back now. I understand I was deep in burnout. I was unhappy and I’d sit in my car and cry before I walked in the house and I’d sit in my car and cry before I walked in the office.

And I just, it felt terrible. And I, and I was like, My hair all caught. I was, um, I like to call it inspirational porn, you know, all those like fancy means you see like the, it’s like inspirational porn and I’m like, yes, and I’ve got those plastered everywhere and my whole interest page filled with the inspirational porn.

And I’m like, I don’t know how to feel it though. I can’t get it. So that, you know, there was this disconnect. And, um, I was drinking way more than I wanted to. I was definitely emotionally eating looking back. I understand that now what I was doing. Um, and it just, it all came to a head when I was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer, this was back in 2016.

And, um, Of course, along with the fear, there was this. Like peace and clarity and relief that washed over me for many reasons. One being, Oh my God, I can just take a step out of that life that was burning me out so badly and focus on this thing that I understood. I have no control over it. However, I have control on how I show up and.

You know, cancer could take my life from me, but it cannot take my experience of me living my life away from me. So it was, it was this crazy juxtaposition or whatever in my brain of like, how can I feel so calm going through these cancer treatments and all the stuff that all the things that came along with it.

Um, when my regular life that looks so good from the outside felt so terrible. So then, um, went through all the treatments and, you know, no evidence of disease went on with, you know, back to normal. Yay. You know, the cancer confetti gets swept away and suddenly I’m back in that life that I didn’t want to live anymore.

So I found. I went through a little bit, just a very little bit of therapy and I’m like, okay, that felt good. But I know I need more and that’s when I found this whole world of life coaching that I knew not about and, um, took deep dive into, I found a podcast. I took a deep dive into that and just started consuming everything I could about life coaching and.

The how it really clicked, I had certainly heard before that, you know, you get programmed with belief systems and then you have thoughts and they create your feelings, which then drive your actions and create your results. And I had heard all that before, but suddenly it clicked how to separate the facts from my beliefs and my story.

I call it your story about the facts. And when I, when that clicked into place. It just, everything just accelerated in my learning and my understanding of why I felt the way I felt. And then I was able to, um, start living a much more fulfilled life.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: You’re talking about shaping your reality. Yeah. You’re talking about taking the reality that’s there, not denying it, not ignoring it.

But actually, uh, configuring it or reconfiguring it in a way that it’s, it’s, it’s not the negative that it, that it feels like it’s taking those, those other pieces. So how do you help your clients achieve that? Because it, you obviously had to go through some steps to get there, but you, you literally just.

Basically, you had to change, you know, and, and without people, without saying, okay, we’re not talking about alternative facts and alternative realities, folks, we’re talking about the reality for which you live, but finding those pieces and readjusting your, I guess, lens,

Melanie McNamara: right? Yes. Oh, that’s a beautiful way to put it.

And, and we’re not talking toxic positivity either. Cause that’s what I thought mindset was.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: Yeah. That’s a real thing.

Melanie McNamara: Yeah. I thought mindset meant you have to beat yourself up and make yourself. You know, push yourself through all these terrible things and, um, there’s a silver lining and you have to just be positive.

Be happy all the time. I think that’s the worst thing we can tell that we’ve learned or that society tells us or we tell ourselves is the pursuit of happiness is the ultimate goal. And it’s not, it’s not the ultimate goal. So, um, So, okay. So this is a beautiful way that I can sort of describe it and take you through it.

So this whole situation with your son this morning, so the reality was he started. And like, sometimes I break it down to like kind of the ridiculous, like he was saying words. Maybe with a speech kind of fast, did he have tears? Maybe he had tears coming out of his eyes.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: They were starting to, well, though I could see and the face, it was all, it was all leading to I’m going to drop some massive tears and we got him to stop, but he was on his way.

Yeah. So,

Melanie McNamara: okay. So the fact that most of us in the world, most rational people in the world could look at and say, these are the facts. What did you make that mean about, what did you make it mean that he, what he was saying and he was about to cry and his emotions, what, what did you make that mean?

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: So I said to him, Agassi, I need you to stop and think for a moment.

I said, and I just asked him questions cause I was thinking maybe if he hears the questions, this might help. I said, Agassi, is the air pod outside of the car? No. Did I drive over it? Busted. No. Did you lose it in the river yesterday when you went to your, you know, you know, hiking or, uh, bike riding time at camp?

No. Is it off in some field somewhere? No. Where is it? It’s physically in the car. Yes. Yes. So let’s stay there. And then, but even after acknowledging that, he’s like, you just don’t care. They’re expensive. And then that’s, That’s what then set me off because I’m like, we just established that it’s not gone forever and it’s not lost.

We just established that it’s physically in the car and you’re not breathing that in and saying, okay, big picture. So then I went down my road of bad mommy.

Melanie McNamara: Well, you had mentioned earlier, you were like, he’s freaking out. Yeah. He was freaking out. Too emotional. Yeah. Yeah. And then how do you feel when you’re looking at your son, he’s freaking out, he’s being really emotional.

You’re thinking all that. How does that feel with you? Like what’s the

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: feeling for me in that moment? I, it was frustrating because I, I understood that there’s no need to be this emotional about this. I understood that your air pod is under the car seat in the car so that I could. So for me, I was being very selfish in my thought process instead of saying son.

Listen, I hear you. That’s what I didn’t do this morning. I hear that you’re upset. I hear that this really bothers you. I hear that you’re really scared about your air pod that I did not do this morning. Yeah. This morning I was like, I need to get you over to camp. We’ve already wasted extra time. So I, that’s.

So, like I said, then I fell into my bad mommy because instead of stopping and acknowledging, because I know that that’s important for him to acknowledge the words that are coming out of his mouth to make sure he feels like he’s being heard. And so. I didn’t do that.

Melanie McNamara: Yes, Julie. I know Julie saw me writing because here’s what I want to show you.

I know what you’re feeling because I’ve been there

Julie Holton: Reese. I have so been there. Yeah. Yeah,

Melanie McNamara: because your, your actual thought is there’s no need to be this emotional. So you’re like looking at him and he’s doing all these things and you’re like, there’s no need to be this emotional is your thought, which creates the frustration, the frustrated feeling.

So from frustration, you try to logic his way out of emotions will never work. And failing that you start yelling at him. So the result is you’re the one creating extra emotions that, that were unnecessary, right? I can step

Julie Holton: in here. I’m not Melanie, but I will say, and now your thoughts are judging yourself.

Melanie McNamara: You’re like, you’ve been

Julie Holton: saying like, Oh, and then I started bad mommy

Melanie McNamara: ing. Like we do that, especially

Julie Holton: as women. We’re now all of a sudden. As we’re working through whatever that situation was to determine, you know, how are we going to react next time? What’s going to create a better outcome. Now we’re judging ourselves and our judgments are not nice.

I can tell you that. How many times Melanie, do you say to me like, Oh, and how does it feel when your thoughts tell you that you’re awful?

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: I can’t did say, I think I said it earlier, but I can say that I proudly will pat myself on the back because before we got to the destination, I did apologize to him.

Yes. I did say, honey, I got way too emotional and I shouldn’t have done that because it it’s, but again, I still tried to logic it out because what did I say? I shouldn’t have done that because it’s just not, we just didn’t need to go down that road. Yeah. So even, even in my apology,

Melanie McNamara: right? Even in your apologies, you’re like, we, I shouldn’t have gotten that emotional when he’s going to hear, I shouldn’t be, you know, emotions are bad and which perpetuates high levels of emotion.

So like, like you, you were like, yes, Julie was spot on first. We need to remove all the judgment that we did it wrong. And my favorite way to do that. And I learned from a coach, this very phrase is just to say how human of me. Like that’s how human of me. Okay. I’m not a bad mommy. I’m not

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: really calming.

Right. I was like, seriously, like I literally felt my shoulders go. Yeah.

Melanie McNamara: So human like, Oh, of course. Well, here’s. So then you go to, you know, in like, there’s no need to be this emotional. You’re very judgmental mental of him in that moment. Um, You know, and, uh, I can’t think some of the other things we talked about.

Right. So that, this is what we’re talking about is we create our reality through our thoughts, our thought shape, our reality. If you were like, well, of course he’s feeling emotional in his world, you know? So, and it’s not about judging ourselves after it’s like, Oh, next time I feel that frustration coming, I know where it’s coming from, or I can ask myself some questions and figure out why am I feeling so frustrated taking the pause.

Right. Taking a pause and saying, okay, I, I’m in a hurry. I’m the one in a hurry. What in, in like some other questions are like, what am I making this mean about him or about me or about the situation? And you made it mean, you know, you’re going to be late. There’s no need to be this emotional. Let’s just be logical about this.

My son, how old is

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: he? He’s 12 .

Melanie McNamara: He’s 12 and he’s got some, you

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: know, some stuff going on. .

Melanie McNamara: Yeah. Got some stuff going on with all the love and so like, of course, yes. He’s gonna be emotional. So if you were like, oh yeah, of course it’s there. There’s clouds and it’s raining. Of course it’s raining. You can be like, oh, he’s got some thoughts.

Of course, he’s going to feel emotional and allow him to just have his time to be emotional. That’s when we learn how to pro you can, then we can talk, teach them how to process those emotions in a healthy way. Um, but we’re like trying to stifle and push the emotions away and resist them.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: Who knew today’s show was going to be a therapy session for me,

Julie Holton: so

Melanie McNamara: good.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: What do I say? Everybody needs. Yeah, everybody.

Melanie McNamara: I

Julie Holton: want to take this example and broaden it out a little bit. So, um, you know, what are some common thought patterns that tend to hold women back? You know, this, this situation is very specific to, you know, to reach this morning with her son, but there are so many patterns that we find ourselves falling into, you know, for instance, like reach with her son might.

tend to come back to trying to logic the emotion out or reason with him. But there are other thought patterns. You know, one, one type of, um, of situation that we talk about on the show often comes up when we’re talking with our guests who tend to be. You know, women who are very successful, but don’t necessarily see themselves that way.

I mean, every person we ask, you know, when did you know you’ve made it? They’re like, well, I still haven’t made it right. Like part of that internal versus external, you know, viewpoint. But when one topic that comes up a lot is imposter syndrome, and which I know we can do a whole episode with you on imposter syndrome, but what are some of these thought patterns that you recognize that women, like one woman after another

Melanie McNamara: experience?

Yeah, I mean, so much of not enoughness. I’m not enough. I don’t know enough. I haven’t done enough. Um, Anytime you hear that, um, uh, I, I think of them like, okay, so I think I told you this before, Julie, like chow chow. So I think of it as chow. Like, let’s get rid of the chow. And it’s like, coulda coulda. Um, I could have done that.

Um, H is like, have to need to, a is like, um, ought to, um, wait, Oh, Oh, is ought to w is like, would it coulda and shoulda for, you know, so like any, whenever any of those thought patterns come up, but it’s usually some form of not enough. And I’ll use myself as an example, I’m going to put myself out there and tell you.

A deep seated belief that I have, that I have uncovered that will show up in many ways. And I’ll share with you is I’m not smart enough. And I got that. From growing up. I was the youngest. So I was like, kind of just my, my sister and I, she was really smart. And I was like, well, I’m just, I’m not as smart as her.

And no one ever said that explicitly. Um, but I, I inherited this belief. I’m not smart enough, which then went on to like, I, I, well, I did go to college. I didn’t graduate college. And in my career, it’s like, well, I’m not smart enough to do this thing. I didn’t know it in the forefront. It was running. I always think of it like on the TV, you know, the broadcast at the bottom, the ticker tape at the bottom, it’s like, I’m not smart enough is just, and sometimes it’ll pop up in different ways.

So holding me back would be things like, um, I, I need all the certifications before I do anything. I have to take another class. I can’t help anyone until I take this class or do this thing or learn this other thing, or I’m constantly in like learning mode instead of go out there and do something. Um, I’m not smart enough.

Would be like, I was, I was a very good real estate agent with very good instincts and very good knowledge of every, all things real estate, but I would question myself constantly and go, I would walk down the hall at the brokerage and talk to like three different brokers and say, what would you put? Is this, you know, what would you put in there?

And I was always like, yeah, that’s what I would do too, but I never trusted

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: myself. Even though you already had those answers, you want to back up to your answers.

Melanie McNamara: Yep. Validation confirmation. We, and I, a coach said this once and it sticks in my head. We use other people as validation vending machines.

We’re like putting nickels in and being like, validate me. Let me know that. And not in a, I don’t want to. You know, put, it’s not like, Oh, we’re so terrible to ourselves. We are, but it’s like, Oh, let’s be aware of it. When we are seeking validation outside of ourselves. It’s great. Feedback is great, but knowing, yeah, I do have the answers.

Um, so that, uh, that’s just my own and it still pops up, not smart enough. Um, and all of a sudden I’ll be like, Oh, I’m not doing that thing because that’s that thought again. And it’s, it’s not a problem. I don’t have to get rid of it. I just have to be aware that that one’s going to pop up a lot. Let’s not smart enough to do this podcast.

Oh, right.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: Are any of us, that’s going to, if we’re going to go down that road, Hey, yeah. Yes, we are. I’m going to pull from Saturday night live. We are smart enough. We are strong enough and damn it. People like us.

Melanie McNamara: That’s right. It’s so true. And Oh, may I, may I build on that just for a minute? Um, you know, positive affirmations, right?

Um, there is a place for those a hundred percent, but you have to have some belief. Right. You have to have an inkling of belief and I, I teach a concept like a thought ladder. I think you can Google it, but it’s like, let’s start leveling up our thoughts from I’m not smart enough to like, I’m smart enough to do anything, right?

There’s a gap and I can’t just sit and look in the mirror and say, you are. Smart enough to do anything because I will not believe it. And my brain will constantly be arguing with me. I’ll be looking at the mirror going, you were smart enough to do anything. No, you’re not. You were smart enough to do anything.

No, you suck. If you don’t like, there will be a constant. So I need to one level up, like, well, I’m smart in some areas. Like that might be a thought. That’s like 1 percent less shitty feels a little bit less shitty. And then that becomes my norm. Right. And then the next one. And so, yeah, just to build on that.

So that’s why positive affirmations don’t, they don’t work unless you, you have to believe them. And

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: I have, I have with my daughter specifically, and I, I’ve actually tried to do more of my son as well. Um, she says every day, you know, before she, you know, we’re in the summer, well, yeah, we’re summertime at, but, but for school would tell her.

Every morning before she walked in the building, you’re smart, you’re strong, you can do anything. And to the point where it got to the point where I would, she would run and give me a hug. And then she would just look at me and she’d say, smart, strong, I can do anything. And then she’d run into the building and I didn’t have to, you are her anymore.

So maybe that’s part of it is starting off when they’re, when they’re younger. Let’s get into the science, the science backed brain theory within your coaching. Mm hmm. Talk about that. What’s, what’s that look like in practice?

Melanie McNamara: So it’s like, um, you know, uh, let’s see science back brain theory. I think of it like we’ve got a, like a primal brain and it’s hardwired.

It’s called the motivational triad to seek pleasure, expend minimal energy and, uh, you know, be super efficient and avoid pain. At all costs, and of course, way back when, you know, when brains were being developed and hardwired, we had to avoid the pain of freezing to death or wild animals or the toxic berries out in the forest.

And now it’s like. Avoiding pain is like avoiding going on a podcast and sharing my thoughts with the world. The whole world is listening and, or like going on stage or applying for a job or just going to a networking event and meeting someone and talking to them. That’s. That’s the pain. Um, seeking pleasure.

So, um, there’s true pleasure, which gives us the like dopamine, like true pleasures in our life, like walking in nature and connection with people and all of, you know, whatever brings you pleasure. And then there’s false pleasures that are so readily available, like concentrated. Food like sugar and, and pizza and all this and nothing wrong with those, but that’s false pleasure.

It gives us like that short term dopamine hit with a net negative result, right? In our lives sometimes, um, over drinking, right? The alcohol, the scrolling social media. You know, all the things, um, those are the false pleasures. And then being efficient is like, yeah, of course, Tuesday at two o’clock, I do not want to sit down and write out my marketing plan because that takes a lot of brain power.

I would much rather lay on the couch and watch Netflix. Right. So just noticing those are. We’re already hardwired with that. So that’s the brain, you know, part of the brain science part of it that I think of. And

Julie Holton: Melanie, I know you have some great videos that really walk through, not just this process, um, which I think is, is the first step in, in understanding and having that awareness, like you said, but then also what to do about it, you know, so yeah.

feel like our wiring is a little bit janky, you know, how to start correcting those thought patterns and really going through the process. You have some great videos on, on Facebook, Melanie McNamara. I wish we could get into more today because I don’t know how the time has flown by. I would love to talk.

I mean, we need to do like a whole series with you. We’re bringing Melanie back

Melanie McNamara: period. I love it. I love it. Yeah.

Julie Holton: On her Facebook page, Melanie McNamara coaching. We’ll link to it down below Melanie, before we go, you’re not off the hook quite yet. We do three rapid fire questions with every single guest on our show.

Are you ready?

Melanie McNamara: I’m ready.

Julie Holton: All right. So, uh, first question, what is one piece of advice that you would give specifically to aspiring women

Melanie McNamara: leaders? Oh, okay. Well, that piece we talked about earlier, I’m not going to, you know, I’m not smart enough. Yes, you are. Um, learn, I would say, learn how to, um, advocate for yourself.

And take chances, um, it brings up to mind this, this, um, these studies that show that men will apply for a job if they match like a very low percentage of criteria and women will only apply for a job if they meet like 90 to a. 100 percent of the criteria, whether it’s applying for a job or advocating for a raise.

And if you’re an entrepreneur, that could be advocating, raising your prices, sharing your prices with your clients without feeling, I mean, you. Um, doing it even while feeling the fear. So there’s a lot of money stuff, but yeah, that would, that’s what I would say is, is, you know, find a good mentor to help you through that or a coach.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: We discussed that so much about the different, the dynamic between women and like you, exactly what you said. A guy can one out of 10, they’ve got one out of 10, Oh, I can do this. We’re like, we’ve got nine out of 10. We’re like, Oh, I don’t know. I don’t have that 10th thing, um,

Julie Holton: is so good

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: when she talks about that.

Melanie McNamara: Yeah. Can

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: you please share either a thought, a quote, a book or resource, something that, that had a significant impact on your journey?

Melanie McNamara: Well, initially the way I found life coaching and what changed my entire life was, um, I found a podcast called the life coach school podcast with Brooke Castillo. And um, I, you know, that was five or six years ago and I’ve evolved a bit from like now I’m like, Oh, you know, changed a few of my opinions, but that podcast.

Absolutely introduced me to like modeling out my thoughts and what thought work was, and then which led me to the emotional work of it and all of that. But, uh, uh, that was significant for me. And then amazing authors like Brene Brown and Byron Katie, um, Byron Katie’s, the work, um, that’s a, that’s an amazing one.

Melanie, you coach

Julie Holton: a lot of women, but what if you could go back in time and give your younger self one piece of advice, what would it mean?

Melanie McNamara: You are smart enough and you are good enough. And I would advise her that, um, to create financial freedom for herself because my socialization, and I don’t even know what, where it was, but I had this belief that the man was going to take care of me and not to say my husband doesn’t, but I like, like I having that independence, I think Julie, you and I spoke about that one time about.

Having that financial independence, how important that was to you. And I never got that memo and I would have loved to have had gotten that memo, um, and created more wealth for myself. Where I could just feel much, the more freedom. See, so that’s why we

Julie Holton: have this podcast because we need a little piece of you and a little piece of me and a little piece of Breach and all the women listening to create, you know, this collective whole.

Melanie, I have a bonus question, actually, Breach, I’m going off script because you also say something really beautiful about your future self. Could you share with us your thoughts on how your future self gives you guidance? Thanks. Thanks. Yeah.

Melanie McNamara: So I, I always thought that was kind of silly. I’m like, I didn’t know how to create my future self.

And I thought there was like some dynamics, some steps to do it, but it’s just envisioning who do I want to be or where do I want to be? What’s around me. So I’m in, so I create this future version of myself. Who’s not perfect. Like we don’t, we’re not striving for perfection, but I look to her for answers.

She’s my own best mentor. So if I’m making a decision, I look to my. Future self and say, what would she choose? You know, the one who’s already done it. The one who already knows the, how, who the one who’s, who’s like, it’s okay, girl, just come on. Like, she’s like, girl, I got you. I’m waiting for you. It’s okay.

I’m not in a hurry, but you’re coming. And she just reminds me every day that, oh, I’m coming. I’ll get there. And to enjoy the journey along the way.

Reischea Canidate-Kapasouris: That’s awesome. That is so awesome. Uh, we, so many topics in today’s show and so many episodes in this one, we are definitely going to have you back. That is an absolute must.

We have to have you back, but that is all for this episode of think tank of three, please show your support by hitting the subscribe button and the best way that is the best way to help us spread the love. Thank you so much for tuning in.

Melanie McNamara: Thank you for having me.