How do you feel about life? Are you constantly questioning if you are living the life you are meant to live? Many people, even those that have achieved successes by cultural standards, feel empty inside.
Meet fellow seeker, Amy Wong. She’s a transformational leadership coach and certified Executive Coach using her expertise in transpersonal psychology, design thinking, interpersonal neurobiology, and Conversational Intelligence®. Amy’s helping individuals, teams and businesses find new ways to collaborate and thrive at work. She's created a process to help all of us find more meaning and connection so that we can come to work and life on a soul level.
Amy started down a traditional career path successfully working her way up the corporate ladder until a series of synchronistic experiences brought her to a breakdown moment that led to a life transforming breakthrough. She harnessed that moment of change to create her own company, “Always on Purpose “ and now leads transformative workshops with companies like LinkedIn, Roku, and Facebook, earning the title of “Chief Consciousness Officer."
She shares her story of spiritual transformation and how we can all live and work “on purpose.”
And Amy gives you two secret powers that will help you live with intentionality -- and clear the way for more inspiration to flow into your life.
Pre-order Amy's book "Living on Purpose: Five Deliberate Choices to Realize Fulfillment and Joy" which will be available on May 24, 2022.
Work with Amy, visit alwaysonpurpose.com.
Explore Amy's collection of insights, perspectives and practices to live with intention, lead with clarity, and communicate with confidence. Utilize her free resources at alwaysonpurpose.com/resources
Plus, Karen and Robyn share their "enchanting" weekly Download.
Sign up for Seeking Center: The Newsletter at seekingcenter.app
[00:00:00] karen: We're so looking forward to introducing you to our new friend, Amy Wong, she's a fellow seeker, as well as business leader, transformational leadership expert, and life coach. Who's helping teams and businesses find new ways to collaborate and thrive at work. Robin and I talk a lot about our soul's purpose.
[00:00:17] What we find so fascinating about Amy's work is that she's created a process to help all of us find more meaning and connection at work so that we can come to work on a soul level and deepen those connections at a time when we've all been asked to reinvent how we work and interact together, Amy's passion for helping us to rediscover.
[00:00:36] Our purpose at work is
[00:00:37] amy: more important than ever. Like many of us
[00:00:40] robyn: Amy started down a traditional career path successfully working her way up the corporate ladder until a series of synchronistic experiences brought her to a breakdown moment that led to a life transforming breakthrough. And that changed everything.
[00:00:57] Amy harness that moment of change to create [00:01:00] her own company, always on purpose and leads, transformative workshops and coaches, leaders at companies like LinkedIn, Roku, Salesforce, and Facebook she's even earned the title of chief consciousness office. She's here to share her story of spiritual transformation and help you thrive and live your purpose as
[00:01:21] amy: well.
[00:01:21] karen: Amy, we're so excited that you're here with us. Welcome.
[00:01:25] amy: Well, thank you so much. I'm so happy to be here. Oh yes.
[00:01:28] karen: Great story to share with us. And we can't wait to get into that, but we want to start at the very beginning. Tell us a little bit about yourself, how you grew up and how spirituality played a role in
[00:01:38] amy: your, your journey.
[00:01:38] I consider myself really lucky because I've been raised in a family with just a tremendous amount of love, and there's just so much love. And my mom and my grandma are very metaphysical. I remember that we would be having these really amazing big conversations about existence and about the nature of reality and the university.
[00:01:58] I couldn't get enough of it. I recognized [00:02:00] that pretty early on. This isn't interesting to me. And so it drove so much of what I did from that point forward, the books that I would read seminars I would do, and, you know, in high school, right. Meditation classes. And so spirituality is like breathing. What
[00:02:15] robyn: books were you reading
[00:02:16] amy: at that point?
[00:02:17] I must've been, I think I was in fifth grade. I actually write about this. And the book that I just finished and I was in the public library with my mom and I stumbled upon Thich Nat Han. They remember being intrigued and pulling it out and just completely falling in love with it. And that set me off on this journey to find more books like that.
[00:02:36] And so it ranged from all like all aspects. And take not Han and then Wayne Dyer and then Krishna Merde and Deepak Chopra and Louise hay was big in our family, right? So all of us had copies of how to, you know, heal, heal your life. And so we just full range of all of those things. I mean, fifth grade, how did that
[00:02:57] robyn: lead to what you decided to [00:03:00] study and go into right after high
[00:03:02] amy: school, spirituality was just always in the background and it was wasn't anything that it was like, it's something I have to go do.
[00:03:08] It was just happening. What I find really interesting and it's completely synchronous. You know, looking back, I fell deeply in love with mathematics and completely fascinated by mathematics passionate. In fact, in high school, I, it was a combination of that seeking mentality and I get it now. Right. So I fell in love with math because it's the language of the universe.
[00:03:28] And think about math is it's objective. Right. It's there is no gray area. You can get to a place where you present something and it's irrefutable. Let's take all of this abstract information, find patterns, meaning, and explain it in an irrefutable way. Like that's amazing to me. I think it's amazing that you
[00:03:44] karen: were so passionate and were able to follow that.
[00:03:46] I think a lot of young women were not interested in science.
[00:03:49] amy: And I have to tell you, I have to give my dad mad props for this, because this didn't just happen. And it wasn't something I was born with. I was put in school at a young age. I was four going into kindergarten. I felt [00:04:00] like I was one step behind all the time, socially, academically.
[00:04:03] And by the time I got into junior high, I remember doing pre-algebra and I just was struggling. And I was so frustrated and I got a B, and I hated it. And I was just so nervous. I didn't want the teacher to call on me. How much anxiety and my dad, God bless him. He was like, Amy going into ninth grade.
[00:04:22] He's like, just take it again. And I'm like, that sounds awful. No, why would I do that? And he goes, you've got a good foundation, you're going into a brand new school. You're going to know a lot. It's just, it's, you're just gonna feel solid. And my dad, he's always given me the most amazing advice and I always listen and I was like, okay, sure.
[00:04:40] Why not? And that was exactly what needed to happen. And so when I entered into ninth grade and I did it again, it was like, everything caught up and it clicked and everything came into focus and then I couldn't get enough. And then, and then it took off. So my dad will be really happy to hear this and I'm giving them credit, by the way,[00:05:00]
[00:05:01] karen: really, you pick the right parents for you to kind of follow up paths
[00:05:05] robyn: and totally
[00:05:05] amy: did lesson to learn
[00:05:08] robyn: at that age. You were given permission, actually, , and advice to do that where some parents would react differently. Like, why aren't you getting it? You know what I mean?
[00:05:18] amy: That just is so not lost on me.
[00:05:19] I feel like I said, I started saying, I'm just feel so lucky. So did you follow
[00:05:24] karen: the, the mathematical path through,
[00:05:26] amy: college and into career? It's interesting. So this is where I think the spiritual part of me, which I guess we, you, we could say intuition, right. There was a part of me that knew this was needed to study.
[00:05:36] Even though I had no idea what I was going to do with it. And the default, you know, everybody would be like, oh, what are you gonna do with the math degree? Are you going to teach it? And I'm like, no, like what are you going to do? I'm like, I don't know, it'll work out. It's going to be fine.
[00:05:47] But despite that inner knowing I had this anxiety filled drive. And so I had this very interesting balance of being motivated by fear to succeed, to do it right. And [00:06:00] to get ahead, but then also really listening to those impulses and those inklings and the intuition, like little signs.
[00:06:06] And so I went to Cal I to Berkeley, right? So here I am in the bay area and it's, you know, to your 2000, 1999. And so, narrowed right into tech. And I started working at sun micro systems. I got an internship at 19 and it just, it was one of these things where it just, I hit it off.
[00:06:23] It clicked and I ended up staying through. And once the moment I graduated, I had already been there for a couple of years. And so it just, it took on a life of its own. And I have to tell you on the. I was so happy. Like I had a dream come true. I have this amazing job and making this incredible living, and then I meet my husband.
[00:06:42] He lives in San Francisco, we've got this incredible house and he's a chef and restaurant chore. And we've got the good life. And so everything was so formulaically. Right. But I was hollow inside, but I couldn't quite name it the way I had navigated to get to that point where the [00:07:00] first part of my career was of this perfect on paper life.
[00:07:03] I was following the false formula, do the thing. To get the thing, to get the title, to make the money, to get the next title, to get the promotion, to land the house, and then you'll be happy. And it's like, okay, well have all these things. Why do I just feel so, and you can't even quite put your finger on it, but there's something there.
[00:07:22] And if I hadn't had a child, I have two children now, but it was, it was the birth of Aiden. That was really the catalyst for a huge breakdown, breakdown breakthrough. But so I'd say back to the first part of the career question, it's spirituality showed up as mathematics and I followed the formula because that's what you do in math.
[00:07:39] Right. And then I got to the end point and something had to change. And how long did that take
[00:07:46] robyn: for when you started to, when you had your son?
[00:07:49] amy: So by the time I was 29, so 19 to 29 and the whole everything just been crumbling. Wow. Did you sense
[00:07:57] robyn: when you were in those last [00:08:00] few years before he was born, did you have any sense when you were in meetings or getting up in the morning? What were you
[00:08:07] amy: feeling? It's such a great question. I was reflecting on that this morning. I was, and I, remember I had so many great bosses.
[00:08:15] It's fun. I have to tell you I'm again, very lucky. And, or my manager at the time, his name was Gary Rush and he just, he was my favorite person. And I remember in one of our meetings, like, one-on-ones, I was like, you know, how am I making the world a better place? Like, how is it that this actually contributes to the bigger picture?
[00:08:35] I got to quit and he's like, okay, Amy, well, you got to have all that and all that and all that. No, no, no. And so he had to talk me off the ledge, but I just, I remember feeling so lost, but not lost.
[00:08:46] robyn: We can say that we have felt that that's why I, and I think it's helpful for other people to hear what that feels like, because there's lots of people out there that
[00:08:56] karen: are locked.
[00:08:57] And Amy, you th the way you described it was [00:09:00] so visceral. And I, I can just imagine how many people are going. Oh my gosh. That's how I feel. And what you're describing, I think is that stage of life, when all of a sudden you realize I've gotten to this place, my soul needs
[00:09:10] amy: to wake up now to figure out why I'm here now.
[00:09:13] And that, so Aiden, who is now almost 13, he, what a dream come true. I've got the world's most amazing husband and, and now this beautiful baby boy. I had to really wrestle with, okay, do I go back to work? And because of my very driven, very ambitious mind, you know, I had been there for 10 years and I'm like, I am going to be a director by the time I am 38, I was like, wait, do I go back?
[00:09:39] I know I'm here to, I'm here to do something, but it's not that. And so if I'm not going to be here with my son full time, I am not going to waste my time on that because that's not the right thing. So here's the mathematical mind of mine. So I had to come up with some framework in order to toggle to a clear yes.
[00:09:55] Or a clear no. And so I said, okay, I have to say yes to one of these three [00:10:00] things, if I'm going to go back. And so we, we need my income to survive. Okay. No, don't, this is my only outlet for social fulfillment. And this is where I find my identity. No, this is my. No, well then why the hell would I go back?
[00:10:15] I can't, but to say no to that, that's when my world came crashing down, because then I was confronted with, well then who the heck am I? And with that, I was really crumbling on the inside. But on the outside I was smiling. I was happy that, but on the inside I was just completely falling apart. And then the worst part was, you know, I'm thinking, gosh, am I to be having a hissy fit over this?
[00:10:37] Like, oh my God, I am so lucky that I have the ability to stay home. And I am, I'm acting like a burden because I can't go back that just made matters so much worse. But that was really kind of the breakdown I had to go tell my manager at the time her name was Adrian Whitmore and she still is one of my favorite people.
[00:10:54] And I had to tell her that I was going to come back to work on the outside. It was very exciting, but on the inside, I was [00:11:00] just, I was destroyed. So this is what happened. So I come home and my husband greets me and he's like, how are you doing? And I'm like, I think. You know, Adrian's a mom herself, I'm going, I'm not, I'll be right back.
[00:11:10] I'm gonna go change. And so before I take over and take Abe, I go upstairs to change. I'm walking up the stairs. I'm just, I'm, I'm feeling like I'm transitioning into something else. It's like, okay, I'm saying goodbye to something that I've, that I thought I was in. I'm in now in my closet. it was a moment of surrender and I threw my answer to the side and I said, you know, I give up, you show me the way.
[00:11:30] I don't know what you, I was talking to. I don't know what compelled me. But I did. And it was immediately answered. And I have no words to describe this, but it was, it felt like I got hit with lightning, not in a painful way, but every cell in my body reverberated with a truth, a shot of a knowing that ha wasn't words, but the words were you're going about it all wrong.
[00:11:50] It's not about figuring it out. It's about feeling it out. And that literally, it was like a quantum shift changed me in a moment. [00:12:00] And I emerged in that moment, a totally different person. My life was completely different. That next second on I kid you not, it was not
[00:12:08] karen: about figuring it out. It's about feeling it
[00:12:11] amy: out.
[00:12:12] What were the next steps after that? The moment this hit me. Oh, oh, right. So, okay. Then what this means in practice is I will not follow an idea. I have to wait for that feeling, that feeling of inspiration it's that? And I know, you know, not it's a good idea. This makes sense. This sounds right.
[00:12:31] And so I made a commitment to myself in the closet and let's just see where this takes me. Let's just see where this goes. It was the most effortless, delightful synchronistic series of events over a very short period of time. It was like to, to, to do, to take it. And the next thing I know, it's like, wow, okay, here we are.
[00:12:47] And this is my life. No, yes, of course. It's. But it, takes practice to discern between the thought and the feeling. So that was 10 years ago. So, because I am so show intent on following the impulse, because I [00:13:00] have decided this is a sign for me to me that this is the path of least resistance to where I'm headed.
[00:13:07] I've just got to follow it. So I'm in the midst of reading. Next thing I know. It was like, you need to look up the author right now. It wasn't like I'm having this dialogue. It was just that, look this author up. So I do, so I pull it up and I'm like, oh, he lives in Massachusetts.
[00:13:20] And oh, and this is, oh, he's doing a lot events. That's interesting. I click on events and I scroll down. So now mind you I'm in San Francisco, he lives in Massachusetts events. I forget what day it was, but it was like, oh, that's today. He's speaking at the church, down the street
[00:13:38] at the Unitarian church. And so I was like, oh my God. And so then I look a little further down and then it says that he's speaking at the science and nonduality conference in San Rafael, the next month. And then , it's that feeling? So this is what I got good at for listening for it's this feeling that I can feel here.
[00:13:54] So I look it up and I get that feeling and get up. I gotta go, I gotta go to this. And I'm thinking. But am I the right [00:14:00] audience? I'm not, I'm not enough. I'm not, I'm just, I'm a new mom. So I emailed the the organizer. He emails me right back. My email to him was, hi, you don't know me.
[00:14:09] I'm looking into your conference. I don't know if I'm the right audience. This is fascinating to me. I just want to just double check. Like, is this appropriate for me? I'm a new mom. He emails me right back going, I'm comping your ticket. And so I came in, and then, I started like transpersonal, psychology, never heard of this before.
[00:14:25] And it was very quickly, it was just the path so laid out, but it was just by listening and then following it, I get so far down the path so quickly that I tell my husband Arnold. I'm going to get my master's in transpersonal psychology. And he's like, what are you going to do with that? I'm like, I don't know.
[00:14:42] And he goes, are you licensed for anything? And I'm like, Nope, what are you going to do? I don't know. It's going to be great
[00:14:49] karen: before we leave this topic. Can you just tell, we might not know
[00:14:52] amy: what transpersonal psychology is. You know, when we think of psychology, psychology tends to be the study. the mental behaviors and the [00:15:00] mental processes in mind and transpersonal psychology extends beyond the confines of mental processes and takes a look at the system.
[00:15:08] And it's taking a look at consciousness. It's taking a look at, how we are arising in humanity and what this has to do with our psychology. So psychology and its traditional sense as an aspect, but in transpersonal psychology, it's much bigger. So, you're looking at consciousness at the womb.
[00:15:24] You're looking at, studies and prayer, your altered states of consciousness. I don't know if this is entirely accurate, but it works for me. But I usually say quantum physics is. Transpersonal psychology is to psychology, but in the converse. Right? When you've got quantum physics, it's study of the small, but for transpersonal psychology, it's the study of the big and so very nourishing best decision I've ever made in my life.
[00:15:46] robyn: You get your degree in transpersonal psychology and
[00:15:49] amy: then what? Well, so it's interesting. I didn't realize this, but it was the part of my soul saying, it's time to balance you out because I studied pure mathematics for that part of my life. [00:16:00] I had gone through the exercise.
[00:16:02] Really honing my ability to perceive, interpret, and then translate information in an irrefutable way, which really was black and white. And then transpersonal psychology that was like going through serious perceptual gymnastics because I was to orient myself into this very nonlinear way, very subjective, very different way of understanding truth.
[00:16:24] So there it is. The common denominator is truth, right? So it's seeking truth here, seeking truth here, but it balanced me out. And I didn't realize that's what I was really wanting in the process of graduating and going through this graduate degree. I emerged as a possibility. And it was just so clear. I'm like, oh my gosh, this is what I've been gearing up for all my life.
[00:16:45] Then, deciding to study that and get certified in that while I was getting my graduate degree, it was like, and did it ding, ding, ding, ding. Okay. This is the path. How fulfilling,
[00:16:54] robyn: That feeling. I would imagine when you realize. That's where you can take [00:17:00] all of
[00:17:00] amy: this. Oh, I can't even begin to describe the feeling.
[00:17:04] It's the last bite you found the last bite. There it is. It's the last bite. It's that feeling of completeness it's yes, there is meaning and there is purpose. There is meaning to my existence and to how I want to show up and what I choose to do and how I choose to focus.
[00:17:22] And I can see now how I'm an integral part to this big fabric. Existence and I'm choosing it instead of having it just happening. It's an incredible feeling. Well, it's also about listening to your intuition
[00:17:34] karen: too, isn't it? And just letting
[00:17:35] amy: letting that be your guide, and you can tell
[00:17:37] karen: when you were describing your life before that feeling of like, have to have to have two, and then after that change, that feeling of light, that just sort of erupts out of you, when you talk about how you felt about
[00:17:48] amy: what you were doing every day.
[00:17:49] Yeah. Thank you. And you know, and I didn't even go so far as to say it's paradigm leading up to the, the old paradigm of figuring it out is, is riddled with, I would even say it's should it's I should, should, should I should [00:18:00] be doing this? Like should is the word. I mean, that is the biggest false, I honestly think it's the worst word in the English language.
[00:18:07] It isn't it Louise
[00:18:07] robyn: hay who says to like, we should just take should out of our okay. Yeah. Isn't that interesting that that was part of your upbringing totally infused in you. And so now you're helping to teach others that there aren't the should take, should out
[00:18:23] amy: take should out. I mean, this is such an amazing big conversation.
[00:18:27] Well, and I just
[00:18:28] robyn: think there are certain things like talking about the word should or Karen and I talk a lot about energy. That people don't, they just don't even, that would never come to mind. That should, isn't such a great word to use, and it's helping somebody who's listening right now who never thought about that before stop using
[00:18:46] amy: that word and see how well, and to do that, to your point.
[00:18:49] You have to take a step back and say the only way you're going to be able to execute on this is to notice the feeling because it's not the word, it's the energy behind the word. And so, [00:19:00] yeah. So I'll just tell you really what's going on. The reason should holds us down it's because what is in our focus, if we're using the word.
[00:19:09] Our noble self is convinced. We're looking in the direction of what we want and what we want to feel like. So, over here, like, let's imagine everything you want is on the side of me, this is love and abundance and joy. And here's on the side of me is everything I don't want, which is rejection and debt and missed opportunities.
[00:19:24] If we're using the word should what's happening is our noble self really wants to think I'm moving in this direction. I should go to the gym, I want more health. No, no, no. Not at all. If you're using should, what's happening is what's most in your focus is the stuff you want to avoid and you're pushing against it.
[00:19:39] And so you're using resistance in order to move in the direction of what you want. And. Should hold us down. It's because we are focused more on the negative consequences than the actual desired, aspirations and desires. And it's so silly because it's like should, according to who do we shift and talk a little bit about your book
[00:19:59] karen: and always [00:20:00] on purpose and how did that come into being as a result of this journey that you
[00:20:04] amy: were on?
[00:20:04] A complete series of synchronicities that always on purpose came to be. I was just finishing certification as a coach. I am wrapping up my masters. It was so exciting and so amazing and delicious to be thinking of just creating a practice. And so the overwhelming question was, what am I going to call it?
[00:20:23] I'm sitting with the fact that it's not quite hitting me yet. And then not a nowhere. I get this massive surge, like just this. To read Wayne Dyer. So I look it up and he's got a new book. I'm like, this is great. I'm going to get his book now because I've got an infant. I'm not reading so much these days, I'm listening to the audio book.
[00:20:40] So I buy the audio book and it just so happens. We're going off to vacation . And I started listening to this book and listen to it on the plane and I'm listening to it. And I'm like, I don't like, I'm like all I'm like, ah, and so, but then there's a part of me. That's like, well, you really have this urge to read it, just stick with it, Amy, just stick with it. And I'm like, okay, literally I was just about to turn it off. [00:21:00] He said something of the effect of always on purpose in two broken sentences and it just went whoa. And I was like, that's it. That's the name? I was like, thanks, Wayne. Didn't finish the book.
[00:21:11] robyn: Tell us more about it
[00:21:13] amy: it's an understanding that there's so much more going on. Always on purpose really is it's this relationship we have with ourselves dictates every.
[00:21:21] And this relationship we have with ourselves now, as cliche as that sounds, it is so deep and it is so important, this relationship dictates the lens that we look through, which gives rise to what we see, how we perceive the beliefs. We hold the thoughts, we think the actions. So it creates all of reality.
[00:21:40] It creates all of our reality, this relationship we have with ourselves. It's the heart of always on purpose. It's really recognizing that if we want to do any work, it's this relationship you have with yourself while there's no formal process it's a fluid conversation. In order to, shore that up and create the transformation in the life, the work that one wants to have.[00:22:00]
[00:22:00] And I were talking the other day about
[00:22:01] karen: how now, more than ever, I think. Really stepping back and trying to figure out what they really want to do at work. And how does that align
[00:22:09] amy: with purpose? I bet if you
[00:22:11] karen: did a survey of people today, a good percentage of them would probably say they're not living their soul's purpose at work.
[00:22:18] So how do you talk individuals and teams about that, Amy? And how do you help them face what you did one day, which is like, gosh, this is not where should be, or this is how I might be able to improve my relationship with my career and bring it more in line with my purpose.
[00:22:34] amy: You know, we need to be asking ourselves instead of what do I want to do?
[00:22:37] We need to ask, what do I want to feel? And so a lot of our discontent, you know, on a professional way, stems from the fact that we're really good at pointing out what it is we don't like doing. And so we focus on that. And so we get stuck there because without really identifying what we want to feel, we can't get clear on what the doing is that's the first place you want to start.
[00:22:54] And then we have to kind of decide what purpose means in general, right? Because purpose, there is no [00:23:00] objective definition for purpose. And I honestly think, I think it could be such a loaded term for people. when we hear the word purpose, it just gets so big. And on this, I've got to go find it and I need to go solve world hunger and its purpose.
[00:23:12] And for me, what I've decided is it's a moment by moment practice to follow that feeling of life being kind of infused into me as a result of something I'm focusing on or thinking about. And so the only way to live into one's purpose is to feel into it. But you have to take that leap of faith, recognizing that there's no strategy that's going to get you there.
[00:23:31] It's just following that feeling. And so for anybody that really wants to get better at this, it's one start asking the question, what do I want to be feeling? And then to commit to listening for feeling into an honoring and acting on those feelings. So even if it's like, oh my God, I can't stop reading about horse stables.
[00:23:50] I have to read about horse stables. It's like, okay, go read about them. Right. And then you're like, I need to go to this conference on, technology. Go do that because chances are, there's someone [00:24:00] there with something there. That's going to introduce you to this, to that. It's really allowing yourself to navigate in totally different way.
[00:24:06] Well, and it
[00:24:07] karen: doesn't have to be radical transformation overnight, right? Like, oh God, no, that's Like it can be just looking for those simple things in the day to day experiences and recognize. Maybe your purpose is not
[00:24:19] amy: to be the
[00:24:20] karen: executive vice president of the company. Maybe your purpose isn't even, to rise even one level maybe your purpose is really just to make the others in your group.
[00:24:29] Happy to bring that little bit of light to the meeting every day, to be the listener, to someone who might need some advice. Explore the other things that are out there that are kind of light you up,
[00:24:39] amy: that you can maybe work your way towards.
[00:24:41] But even in that day to day, I think there's so much sometimes
[00:24:44] karen: that we don't recognize that we can do right where we are that are just those small little steps that
[00:24:49] amy: we can. I love this so much. Thank you for pointing that out because the way I tend to think about it, it's not so much, what's my overarching purpose for the rest of my life.
[00:24:57] It's like, what's my purpose today.
[00:24:58] robyn: You work [00:25:00] with corporations and businesses and help them infuse this idea into.
[00:25:07] amy: The entry point for me has been the topic of trust and communication. Over the past 10 years, I have become incredibly passionate about communication just by becoming very fascinated by it. I've explored it in all regards. And so I ended up getting certified in conversational intelligence, which just completely opened me up to an entirely new understanding of even what always on purpose means and at the heart of what is truly interesting to me about communication is that it's all about trust.
[00:25:36] As humans, we are hardwired to belong, belonging is experienced by this dynamic of communication and the way we can ensure this sense of belonging as if trust exists. Without trust, nothing is possible. And so trust is such an important and vital necessary component to success and we so need to be putting a spotlight on it. And so for a lot of the organizations out there that are kind of waking up to, it's not enough to be [00:26:00] transactionally.
[00:26:00] Excellent. We need to improve our communication practices and maybe we need to improve the level of trust in our culture. That actually might really help us. Now trust and their ability to communicate and connect that to me is an entry point into this bigger conversation, because communication is an effect of this relationship we're having with ourselves.
[00:26:18] karen: Think I've noticed it a lot at work too. I think the whole desire for people to connect is different now because we're not in the same office building space. I think there's been so much fear about how we're going to make it through not even as a business, but just as human beings.
[00:26:33] That must be transformative to just kind of hear from your peers, what they think their purpose is. I would love to go through an exercise with that in a corporate setting because I'm sure people are amazed.
[00:26:45] At the depth that comes out of just that question of hearing what their boss thinks that their professes or Kali, it's not a question that comes up in a corporate environment very often at all. So it, just to me offers [00:27:00] that level, like you were saying
[00:27:01] amy: Of
[00:27:01] karen: vulnerability a little bit, but you just see them as who they are as a human being.
[00:27:05] It forms a connection, doesn't it, that's just completely
[00:27:09] amy: different. You see
[00:27:10] karen: each other completely differently. You see them as this human being that is looking to achieve something
[00:27:17] amy: in their life, a
[00:27:19] robyn: human being with
[00:27:20] amy: a soul.
[00:27:21] Yeah. Yeah. I mean, that's it.
[00:27:23] It's a way of creating a tremendous cohesive community.
[00:27:27] Right. Because they know each other, they know one another on a level beyond the work. It's like, I know you've like you said, Robin, I know you as a soul part of this incredible thing called life,
[00:27:37] robyn: You've talked about relationship to self, How can somebody really work on their relationship with themselves?
[00:27:45] amy: So, gosh, this is the ultimate conversation. So the relationship with self is how do I resonate?
[00:27:51] How do I know myself to be? That's relationship with self. And so, all of us have stories about well, I am smart and I am this and I am [00:28:00] that, and I am good at this. And I'm that, and this is what I do. And while all that might be, things that you focus on, there is something deeper at the core, which is at the core of all of that.
[00:28:10] There is a whole and complete being that is completely pristine, not faulty, not inadequate , but just a whole and complete and, the process of growing up, we lose touch with that knowing, we start to identify with I'm smart enough. I'm good enough. But on the flip side, when this happens, we're naturally fighting beliefs. I'm not good enough, not smart enough. And so we have to wake up to what are all those things that we're believing about ourselves? That aren't true. Like I'm not worthy. I'm not smart enough. I'm not good enough. And it's not that we're saying that to ourselves. It's a feeling. But we feel that pops up certain contexts. It's the feeling that keeps us from, trying out for that promotion or doing this.
[00:28:52] It's that feeling that comes in all the time, and, it's in the associated inner dialogue, which I call inner opposition as a result of these [00:29:00] false beliefs that we take on. That's not true, but we've convinced ourselves that it's true. And by convincing ourselves that it's true, that we're doing everything, we can't hide it from others.
[00:29:07] That's the life that we're living. And that's where much of our success comes from. And it just in the trying to hide all of it. And so there's so much to this conversation, but to really get clear about what it means when I say, this relationship with self is primary. The question is what do you choose to know about what's true.
[00:29:25] And what, what do you believe. And so when you look at those beliefs and think, do I need to believe I know, but what do I choose to know? That's where it starts.
[00:29:32] robyn: I love that you're saying to somebody that's where to start, what do I choose to know?
[00:29:38] I think that's so true.
[00:29:39] amy: Thank you for that. And I'll tell you, cause knowing, I'll tell you, knowing is so powerful because knowing is a choice it's unconditional.
[00:29:45] karen: Well, and it also goes back to what you were saying, which
[00:29:47] I love so much. And if only only we could follow that one piece of advice. Amy is that I've got to follow the feeling.
[00:29:53] amy: But if you're constantly forced to keep those feelings and emotions at bay and not follow
[00:29:58] karen: them, it does kind of [00:30:00] limit you.
[00:30:00] amy: That seems
[00:30:01] karen: to be the thing that, if that could be that's in a corporate environment,
[00:30:04] amy: that we all have a purpose here. Every one of us, it doesn't even have to be wooo.
[00:30:08] karen: each and every one of you by the myths of just being here and bringing yourself to the table, we all have a
[00:30:13] amy: purpose for being here and value to bring.
[00:30:15] karen: I mean, just
[00:30:16] amy: hearing those words
[00:30:17] karen: by a leader in a company would I think be a game changer for so many times.
[00:30:22] amy: Ah, so true. So true. And I love how you said, we hold ourselves back and we want to follow these feelings, but we don't. And so this is the entry point for companies.
[00:30:31] And this is how I'm able to get deep is because I helped map where that fear comes from. So that fear the reason we hold ourselves back, but it all boils down to, has to do with what it means to be human. So as humans, we are hardwired to connect and belong with one another, but that means that we are equally hardwired to avoid rejection, but this is something we're not talking about much.
[00:30:51] And so if you know anything about the neuroscience of rejection, rejection registers as physical pain in the brain, unlike any other sort of emotional [00:31:00] experience, And so, in a much bigger conversation in this, I would help others understand that in the same way that we are constantly seeking connection and approval, we are equally trying to avoid negative judgment cause negative joint judgment maps to projection, which maps to pain.
[00:31:13] I mean, it goes so deep. You think about it when a human is born, right? Human is entirely dependent on its mom for the first couple of years of life. So the hard wiring is such that, Hey, when you're, when you're born, your brain is like, I got to keep you alive.
[00:31:26] That doesn't necessarily mean food, water, shelter. That means mom's got a buy in. And so from the moment you're born, you are hardware to seek belonging, avoid rejection. And so it's a hard wiring that exists. So when it all comes down to, we are definitely afraid of rejection
[00:31:39] which is judgment, humiliation, all of that. It's the thing that keeps us from really doing the work. But unless we know this, we're not able to do much about it.
[00:31:47] robyn: I've never really thought about it in that way. I haven't thought about rejection as physical pain, which, and that were hardwired from the time we're born.
[00:31:55] amy: I mean, it, it dictates everything I mean, let's just think through your day, thanks [00:32:00] through your week and notice that everything that you do and everything that you don't do is predicated upon getting approval and avoiding this. Seeking safety, social safety and avoiding lack of social safety.
[00:32:09] robyn: How do we start to work on that feeling of rejection and, is there a way to work on not having that be such a routine
[00:32:18] amy: black? Totally. So it first starts with recognizing that all the beliefs informed about yourself, such as I'm not good enough, I'm not smart enough or ways of surviving perceived rejection.
[00:32:27] And so that, that way you can go and navigate so that you don't bump into it again, because if I believe I'm not good enough, I'm not gonna put myself out in certain ways so that I might bump up against projection. So recognizing what's going on and how you're navigating as a result of these beliefs is huge.
[00:32:40] That's that's the first step is recognizing that all that crap, the negative self-talk, it's all there because it's trying to protect you from being judged from being rejected. Okay. And it's happening for me and it's happening for you and you, and you do and do so. So that's the second thing it's like, okay, this is what's happening, but [00:33:00] everybody's going through this.
[00:33:01] So the way I have found to untangle the knot to avoid that rejection and not that judgment is to just recognize it. Every single person on this call on that call in this meeting, struggling the same way as, than I am.
[00:33:13] And in the same way, I am absolutely wanting to be approved of. And I want to make people happy and just recognizing that this is the game of being human It helps to zoom out and be like, oh, I don't have to be gripped by this. So even though I know I'm wired for it, I don't have to choose it oh,
[00:33:29] robyn: that's so helpful. I want to bring things back to some of your own spiritual experiences, that have helped to.
[00:33:37] Evolve where you are today and have made a profound difference in your life.
[00:33:42] amy: Absolutely. So spiritual experiences really referring to entheogens and all the things we can do in order to enter into altered states of consciousness.
[00:33:50] I didn't have much context around all things and the agendas and, had no judgment about it whatsoever, and, the classic understanding of these things like might be [00:34:00] LSD or psilocybin or Iowasca, all of these things that we can do to enter an altered states.
[00:34:06] And then I, then I got my master's in transpersonal psychology, and then understood the nature of altered states of consciousness. Very very powerful rather objective way. And so for any fears or any curiosities or any sort of like, woo, it just was completely stripped away. And so I've just seen this really clearly. And I would say the, because I'm a seeker. I am constantly. I just want to know. I want to know. I go to bed at night and I'm like, show me something just show me, I want to see more of the fabric of the universe, and so my first experience it was when I was getting my masters and I was learning about what's called holotropic breathwork.
[00:34:40] That Stanislav Grof has created when LSD became an illegal drug back in the day, they were doing so much incredible work in facilitating altered states for the sake of healing that they didn't want to stop the work.
[00:34:51] And he found that he was able to induce those states through breath work. And so that was my first experience and it just so happened that he was [00:35:00] facilitating personally facilitating a sit. And this was while I was in my master's degree. tell us a little bit
[00:35:05] karen: about that.
[00:35:05] robyn: Is it a different type of breath
[00:35:07] amy: work or is it, it is. It's a whole system of things, right? So there's a bunch of variables. it's sentence setting there's a tremendous amount of intentionality and typically with holotropic breathwork you have a sitter, you have someone there that's there to facilitate and to be with you through your process, lighting and music.
[00:35:22] So sound contributes tremendously to, the experience that you end up having. So it's very intentional, very beautiful, ritual ceremony that you enter into. It's the process of breathwork, it's a very specific way of breathing to really induce an altered state. And you have. To be there, to work through, anything that might arise. And so holotropic breathwork has been know to produce your birth experience. And so then you end up rebirthing yourself and, and there've been so many amazing stories.
[00:35:53] When you read about the nature polled, holotropic breath work, there are people that can recount, like, oh, and the nurse that [00:36:00] delivered me was wearing this smock and it's details that would have that were never shared, but I've been validated some wild.
[00:36:06] It's so cool. It takes a lot of effort. It takes a lot of work and then you enter into an altered state.
[00:36:10] I've done Iowasca and that was, I remember telling the shaman that was harder than natural childbirth.
[00:36:15] And he was like, really that was why is that? You know, in all my conversations with those that are that really honor and do the work in this realm, Iowasca is called grandmother and grandmother. She's going to just show you what you need to see to slap across the face with it, and then there are other, there are other means such as what you are, right?
[00:36:34] And so that's known as grandfather and grandfather is much more gentle and it's going to ease you into some insights . And so I think when I did Iowasca I was gripped with fear, fear that I didn't realize that I had. And it was so it's not physically painful, but there are no words to describe, but I couldn't surrender.
[00:36:52] And that was, that was my lesson. Was that there was some work there for me around surrendering and I was facing. Head-on and it just couldn't, I couldn't [00:37:00] do it. And so the discomfort was extremely hard. Yeah, I mean, it's work, right. And this isn't like, oh, I'm going to go check out. And the way we think about ways in which we like we drank or do these things, it's like, no, no, no, this isn't a checkout process. This is a check in and go deep process. And so you have to be prepared to see things that, you, haven't seen that you need to see that you might not want to see, but for the sake of your growth and your transformation and your evolution.
[00:37:23] Wow. Wow.
[00:37:25] karen: There's so much tradition behind it around for so many thousands of years.
[00:37:29] amy: It's a real tool that you can use to do, like you say, the hard work.
[00:37:33] Yes. It's like everything that you've been talking
[00:37:35] karen: about, Amy, I mean, there's, everybody's journey is going to be different. And I think the fact that you have taken a lot of leaps. Big ones you did the work. Saying I'm really gonna follow this belief that I have, that I am here for a purpose.
[00:37:48] And that if I followed my intuition, if I follow what's really deep within my soul, that I will find that. And clearly you've done that and you've been able to help people do that. And so is there any tool that you use on [00:38:00] a, on a daily basis or anything that has been specifically transformational for you that you use continually that maybe you can recommend other people who are trying to find their
[00:38:09] amy: purpose right now?
[00:38:10] Yeah. Gosh, I have so many, one that comes to mind. It doesn't directly map to purpose, but it creates the clearing for inspiration to come, which maps to purpose. Right. And so there's no formal name for this, but I tend to call it, change the channel. The premise is this.
[00:38:26] So here we are in our day to day and we have this emotional reality that we are contending with it, we might be aware of. We might not be aware of, but if we were to think about all the emotions we could ever have, the truth is we want to feel good. We don't want to feel bad. So if we were to split up, you know, good feelings from bad feelings, we want to be over here in the good feelings, right.
[00:38:44] We want to feel good. And so the first thing to recognize is that whatever we focus on creates our entire reality conscious and unacknowledged, right?
[00:38:52] So we could have an unacknowledged focus that we don't even realize we're focusing on it. the truth is whenever we're focusing on totally dictates [00:39:00] how we feel.
[00:39:00] So if we want to feel good and we catch that, we're feeling bad, we got to do something about it. And it's as simple as this, you know. Have you ever been at the end of the day where you turn on the TV? Cause you just want to relax, like, oh, okay.
[00:39:10] I just want to vegg So you turn on the TV and let them know. That an ax murder, hearer show pops up. Right. And I don't know about you, but I do not like horror at all. and So if you're like me and that pops up on this screen what do you do? You change the channel, right? I mean, it's just like, oh my God, I don't want to watch that.
[00:39:27] And so you immediately change the channel to something that feels good because you know, that that is not how you want to feel. And so you deliberately changed the channel so that you feel better. Now we know this when it comes to the television, but we completely forget that we have a remote control in our hand about what channel we're watching.
[00:39:44] And what's so funny is that I think we become conditioned to this idea. Just because it pops up in my mind. I have to watch it there, which is a kin to, I'm going to turn on the TV. Oh, it's not hard. I didn't want to watch a horror and I'm going to have to watch it. Now. [00:40:00] You never know you change the channel.
[00:40:01] So this very simple tool is the process of this. It's one care more about how you feel two. If you're feeling bad, just recognize it's just something you're focusing on. And so three immediately change the channel to something else. Why would you stay on the horror channel when you could be focusing on anything else that would put you in this place of feeling better?
[00:40:20] And so it's just that we have a remote control. Use it. Oh my God. I
[00:40:23] robyn: love that. I feel like so many people can use that analogy.
[00:40:26] karen: My mom used to say that all
[00:40:28] amy: the time,
[00:40:28] karen: just to use change channel
[00:40:29] amy: and
[00:40:30] karen: days it's easier said than done.
[00:40:31] amy: Totally.
[00:40:32] That is true. But we have the power we always
[00:40:35] robyn: go. We do. And we just have to re we do have to be reminded of that for me. It's a 32nd dance party. You know, I have certain songs when I need to like change my mood.
[00:40:44] amy: Well, I'll tell you, and you know, this is, this tool tends to be most helpful at three.
[00:40:48] When we all wake up I don't care how old you are. I don't care on lightens. You are. I don't know what it is about that 3:00 AM wake up where all of a sudden you're like, oh my God, did I say it the right way?
[00:40:57] Oh my God. And it's just every [00:41:00] potential thing that could go wrong. Just floods my mind. I know this happens for, to countless people. So for me, this is where I use the tool the most. It's the moment I wake up and I catch myself doing that.
[00:41:10] So change the channel. And so that's where it can be really powerful for a lot of people.
[00:41:14] Oh, I love
[00:41:14] robyn: that. I'm going to use that at three in the morning
[00:41:16] Where can people find
[00:41:18] amy: you best place to find me my website is always on purpose.com and on Instagram, I'm Amy Elisa Wong. It's E L I Z. So Amy Elisa one, and then LinkedIn also Amy Elisa.
[00:41:29] karen: Well,
[00:41:30] robyn: thank you so much. I'm so grateful to now be connected.
[00:41:34] amy: Thank you so much. What a gift? What a pleasure. Happy to be connected to so happy reconnected. I can't wait to get together in person.
[00:41:41] Thank you so much. Okay,
[00:41:44] robyn: Don't you just love Amy, her book, living on purpose five deliberate choices to realize fulfillment and joy comes out on May 24th and you can pre-order it on Amazon. Now we'll have the link in the podcast show notes and in our newsletter, as Amy said, you can [00:42:00] find out more about her at her website.
[00:42:02] Always on-purpose dot com, including resources. Such as a self-awareness practice or resolve conflict guide, or even a preview of her book that can all be email@example.com slash resources. And she gave us two secret powers for this week. First remove the word should as much as you can from your everyday speak.
[00:42:22] And second. Use her change the channel practice. Also, you can find our weekly mind-meld download in our newsletter. You can subscribe to our firstname.lastname@example.org, and you can reach out to us there as well. Plus follow us at, at seeking center official on Instagram. Hope you have a wonderful week, everyone.
[00:42:41] Thanks for listening.