Patty is talking with John Roedel, a rare returning guest to the show. He’s a poet and self-published author and he’s back to talk about life, spirituality and how he’s dealing with it all.
One of his most recent poems was about thinking of each breath as a rosary bead. He explains how focusing on his breath is one of the ways he uses to be present and when necessary, as a way to reducing anxiety.
John explains how he writes. He doesn’t claim to know for certain that he is talking with God. He does feel that these messages were delivered to him at birth. They are a part of who he is.
We forget that we were created out of love.
They discuss our creation stories. John wants to remind us that we were created from love, and that we’re part of the Divine. Our world wants us to feel shame about it, or wants us to focus on the things that are “wrong” with us.
John’s writer story is one that we can all relate to. At first, he didn’t consider himself a writer even after publishing a book. He learned that many of his posts were being shared without attribution. Hear how he introduced himself to others who were sharing his work. It’s an amazing approach that he refers to as self-advocacy.
He stills has his moments of self-doubt. He’s now feeling more attached to the work and the impact is has for others. Over time he’s realized that minimizing the impact in a display of humility was devaluing the experience of others.
He reminds us that we are all a unique one-of-a-kind piece of art. To deny that deprives others from your light and impact.
More about John:
John Roedel is an improv comic and writer who did what any typical man does when confronted with their mid-life crisis:
He started having imaginary conversations with “God” on Facebook.
What began as an irreverent way to poke fun at his faith and mental health crisis soon became a project that touched the hearts of people around the world.
John’s latest collection of poetry entitled “Remedy” has been on Amazon’s bestseller list for poetry since its release in November.
Connect with John:
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0:00:04.3 S1: Welcome to the space for magic podcast, where people who are led by their hearts come to learn the secrets to receiving all the gifts the Universe has for us. I’m your host, Patty Lennon. I’m an ex-type a corporate banker, turned intuitive coach using a blend of common sense, brain science and just a dash of magic, I’m here to help you create abundance in every area of your life and business. Welcome. Hey everyone, welcome to this episode of this space for a magic podcast. Today, I have a returning guest. I have interviewed very few people more than once, but John Roedel is… I’m so happy to say one of those people, so I have John here with us today, and if you did not hear my interview with John almost two years ago, you are in for a treat. It’s quite possible, you know John’s work without actually knowing it’s John, ’cause one of the things that has happened to John is he is an amazing writer and poet, but his work has been used without giving him credit sometimes. So we’re gonna talk a little bit about that. He is the author of a few books, and his most recent book, remedy is out right now, we’re gonna talk to him what it’s been like publishing four books on his own, and his work is rooted in what started out as imaginary conversations with God that he didn’t actually believe was probably there to respond to him and found out that he really was, and I think his work has just…
0:01:50.5 S1: I know it’s moved me personally, but beyond me, I have shared it in our communities, both the magic lounge and the receiving school, and it never fails to hit deep, deep emotional buttons that people seem to be feeling at any given point in time. So with that, John, welcome.
0:02:10.4 S2: Oh my goodness, patty, that was the nicest introduction I’ve ever received, and as a returning guest, I’m assuming we get some sort of smokers jacket or some sort of lapel, so we can bring to all of our other friends that we were turning guest with Patty, that’s all I want out of this what.
0:02:32.5 S1: How about a badge for your website, how can do that.
0:02:36.5 S2: Let’s do a badge and then I like something for my sleeve, so I can just put it so on to my Jacket and let people know returning guests.
0:02:44.1 S1: Time… With the way you run your life, I feel like maybe I just get it as a tattoo, I feel like you like to like you find the most painful way to do things, so… Yes.
0:02:55.2 S2: Thank you. No. Okay, that would be great because I lose everything else. My poor wife, I have gone through eight wallets in the last three years. I can’t out… Hang on to anything. So that’s a good point. Maybe something that is attached to me, a tattoo, maybe a scar, we can figure that we can talk off line and figure out proper ways to mark this occasion forever.
0:03:20.7 S1: So… Oh my gosh, we were talking before we started recording this. And I already have stories running through my head, and I can’t jump into the middle of them because you listening haven’t heard them yet, so there’s certain sense, why have you been laughing now, but I’m gonna actually start somewhere… I’m gonna start the present moment and we’re gonna work our way back. I have so many questions for you, but today, the day that we’re recording this, you had just posted something on Facebook, I really have not been spending a lot of time on Facebook, but clearly you’re one of the people I actually read, because Facebook knows enough to put your stuff at the top of my feed. And it was something you shared, and there was a line in it that really struck me for a reason, and I wanna ask you about it about God, so we’re gonna talk a little how your work… How you write your work in conversation with God, but the line was that to treat every breath as a rosary bead, and that hit me really hard because my aunt lived to be quite old and she had Parkinson’s for the last 20, really bad symptoms of Parkinson’s for the last 20 years of her life.
0:04:40.6 S1: So pretty much for the last 10, she was not able to do much of anything. And she was in a Catholic nursing home, and I remember one of the nun saying that, making reference that she was essentially holding on processing other people’s pain with her life, and that every breath was a prayer. And at the time, I really thought that was a crappy way to look at it, I thought that she deserved peace, and now having had distance and gone through my parents death and being able to talk to them on the other side and having a whole other understanding of what our life is about. I’m curious what that meant to you, and also in that particular conversation with God, what you think that meant?
0:05:35.3 S2: Yeah, no, that’s a great question. So I also, I grew up a born and raised Catholic, old school, I went to a Catholic school with nuns, and we were all given those little plastic groceries on our first communion days and reconciliation days, and I grew up with rosaries my mom always held a Rosary she always had one… An emergency happened, my mom would have a rosary in her hand it would like apparate, it was some sort of magic spell, she could just automatically materialize a rosary in her hand, and so I was… So I’ve been surrounded by rosary is my whole life, and I never could quite have… And everyone… Seemed to have a relationship with a rosary here is a very special rosary, and they have a story behind it, and every time someone… I would get a rosary, I was in at the Vatican one, and I bought a rosary there thinking, Oh, this is going to change my relationship with it, I could never quite feel anchored to it or connected to it, and I always looked at other people who I was in church with or my parents or anyone else, and they would have these rosaries and it’d almost be like a tool in their tool kit or a shield or a weapon or something like that.
0:06:44.7 S2: When times got tough, they went to the rosary, and it never really worked for me. I always felt like I would try to use and it was just an empty experience, I couldn’t quite… But when I wrote this piece, I started imagining each in the rosary you count the prayers and you have your fingers on the beads and you focus on that one moment at one prayer, and then your fingers move to the next bead, and that’s how I’m trying to… Live my life a little bit more. I have panic attacks and I get anxious all the time, but it’s when I return to my breath, when I take a deep breath, and I always… I’ve been trying to do this now, when I intentionally breathe, not just breath in to stay alive, or breathing between glasses of wine or whatever it is, I like to think of a breath as just my fingers on the bead, maybe not an intentional prayer. I’m some sort of holy mystic, but a way of grounding me and kind of anchoring me to the moment, the way that I saw other people did with rosaries growing up.
0:07:47.4 S1: That’s so beautiful. And to see it that way, and it’s bringing back a conversation I had with one of the teachers and healers I work with, her name’s Gail Gorelick, and just recently she told me that bead work, which is what essentially the rosary is, but also mala beads was really a spiritual editions answer to panic and anxiety, that it really is a repetitive form of therapy, and that bead work goes back as far as any ancient religion that they have documented, and I found that so fascinating because… I had a similar experience to you, John, I would watch these people do the rosary, and I gotta be honest, the reason I can never do the rosary’s, I can never remember the sections. And I was a really good students, it was really a weird mental block I had, and I was just like, Yeah, I can’t do it right, I’m not gonna bother. Up. Yep. And someone recently gave me a set of mala beads as a gift, and so I’ve been working with them. And interestingly enough, I really am having that experience with them that I remembered so many people having with their rosaries when I was growing up, so…
0:09:12.7 S2: Yeah, and I would love to say that I’m living that and very… I’m taking each moment as the sacred moment that it is, I’m not there yet in my life, I’m just trying to survive, and my life is often a little bit of a train wreck, so I often use breathing as a chance to… When I noticed I’m kind of untethered and I’m floating in this anxious bubble, kind of just imagining… I’m putting my fingers on a bead and taking a deep breath and just honoring that moment and just trying to do cemented my shoes a little bit so I can kind of ground myself, and I remember I wrote that poem. As I write everything, I write it from a state kind of emotion, I don’t write analytically after the fact, like I’m doing an autism, I’m not just doing an autopsy, I’m looking back and I’m like, Oh, I’m not looking back. I’m writing at the moment, and I remember writing that piece feeling particularly kind of anxious and nervous, and this kind of helped got me through it by writing that…
0:10:18.5 S1: You know what I find so interesting John about you, ’cause you’ve talked openly about your… Well, less about the anxiousness, but I know with the original work that you wrote to God was really from a place of just feeling hopeless or desperate or maybe depressed, is that a fair statement…
0:10:39.3 S2: Those are great statements. Certainly desperate. Now, when I started writing these Hey John Hey God posts is about 2015. And my background is, I teach improv and I like being on stage and I like making people laugh. And I found myself in about 2014, 2015, unable to even find anything remotely funny or joyful, and I was angry about it, and I was trying to draw upon my faith life growing up or draw upon all the self-help books I could surround myself with. And nothing was working for me. And so I started having these fake conversations with God to try to poke fun at everything, one my faith crisis poke fun at my Where I was in life, plus poking fun of religion a little bit, and poking fun at the self-help movement, all these 15 steps to a Better You that I couldn’t ever get past that two, I was kind of poking fun at at all, but it was in that, that I started connecting to some magic outside of me, inside of me, wherever it is, and real answers started coming to me, but it was because I was desperate and… That’s a great word that you used earlier.
0:11:52.6 S2: And it was in that active desperation and I started putting them live on Facebook, for some reason, I still can’t explain to this day because I certainly was not… Part of my architecture for my life was never… I’m going to start being very vulnerable on social media and talking about how hard in my life is, that was never something I ever wanted to do or plan to do, but the more I started accidentally doing it and putting in these little beads of truth and these little, these little veins of reality and vulnerability, the more people started responding to it, and the more I learned about myself, I’ll do.
0:12:28.0 S1: It, and I think… I felt like I’ve asked you this question, I knew the answer. I know that you’re answering I… Maybe I’m wrong. Do you believe you’re talking to God…
0:12:39.4 S2: I don’t know, I think… I mean, I don’t know, and I think part of that is also ego, I don’t want to say I have this great connection to the divine that other people don’t have, and look at these amazing things that God is telling me, that God may be… Isn’t talking to other people about… I don’t look at myself as a conduit of the only I have this or I can do this, I look at it as, instead of these answers coming from outside of me in some sort of a moment of connecting to the celestial divine, it’s more of like I think these conversations with God that started very benign and silly, that grew more deep and intense, the answers God was writing back to me were things that were planted in my heart at creation and at birth that I had just forgotten about. They’re still God speaking, but maybe not God. Hey, I’m gonna come down and a dove right now and whisper in your ear in this real moment, and you type out what I’m telling you, it’s almost like I’m uncovering a dig, like an archeological dig where I’m covering these truths in these messages that will put their years and years ago, and that’s how I feel like it is.
0:13:55.7 S2: I feel like it is divine inspired, but it’s always been there and I keep having to dig to keep finding more.
0:14:04.5 S1: That’s an amazing way to look at it, I personally think you’re talking to God… Just so you know where I stand on it.
0:14:12.5 S2: Right, right. Well, I always say I don’t know, and that’s part of I think what fun for me is I don’t have… I told you this before hand, when we were talking off before we started recording, I am a lot like a monkey and an airline or just kind of matching a control is trying to fly a plane. I don’t really have a plan, I don’t really know what’s happening. All this very much happened organically, that didn’t happen because, Oh, you know what, I have some really neat things I wanna say and I need to find a vehicle and formed how to get that up to people. This all just happened without me thinking, I put the cart before the horse, and I just started putting these messages out there without asking, Where is this coming from? And what am I doing? Those things don’t matter to me. Still, it just matters. Am I answering the call every day to write, and it’s always like, there’s still stuff to dig, there’s still stuff to interpret, and I just keep at it every day.
0:15:11.0 S1: You know, as you’re talking, you’re reminding me, I had a conversation with a friend about how I stayed inside the Catholic church for so long. And somehow it came around to it… Patty, original sin. You can’t get on board with that. Can you… And my answer, and it goes to the answer you just gave is I do, because I don’t think Original sin is the way it’s marketed by the church a lot of times, or the way it’s perceived as original sin is the moment we forget or we’re told to forget the truth about our own divinity, right?
0:15:55.0 S2: Yeah, yeah, that’s beautiful. Now, forget who we are, we forget that we were created out of love, we forget that each of us are this unique piece, no one like you will ever exist in the history that cause most ever you are… If your life, Patty is a singular event that will never, ever happen again, and this never end… An expanding universe. There’s only going to be one of you. And that form, when I think of things like that, that just shows how carefully and how lovingly each of us were created, but we forget that. And we only focus on the things that we don’t like about ourselves. We don’t look at the art work that’s already been placed in us from the moment we were imagined…
0:16:41.1 S1: And so in a way, your work is almost like playing the role of what baptism is supposed to play, which is excavating the original sin and getting to the truth of who we are.
0:16:56.1 S2: Yeah, I mean, that’s one of the things I still struggle with, and nothing I ever write about or say is from this great moment, I’m not speaking from my Hill is like, Look how great I’m doing, and I’m amazing. Follow my path. For me, it’s just a constant reminder that I have to keep reminding myself that I was made out of love, I was created out of love, each of us were… That’s the only way I can explain. This entire adventure, we’re all on on this planet of eight billion people, we’re all packed together, but we’re all here and were all… We were all created individually and created out of love, and the world makes us feel such shame, the world makes us… There’s so many pitfalls or where we can doubt ourselves and doubt our purpose, and doubt or divinity and devout and doubt that we were made out of love, and there’s so many pitfalls, and even when I write about tough things and tricky things, and maybe I’m still working through… I think maybe just for me at first, and maybe now for other people, I always have to have a ribbon of…
0:18:03.5 S2: Yeah, but there’s still so much about you that you don’t know and you are created out of this great loving mystery, it isn’t that an adventure that you can’t wait to solve, and I just have to keep reminding myself that over and over…
0:18:18.7 S1: Yes, well, and especially, I think ’cause of some of the stuff that you’ve been through to… I would imagine it requires a lot of reminders, and I’m specifically referring to… For you listening, when I was first introducing John, the way I actually found John was a work of his, right at the beginning of the pandemic was getting shared a lot without attribution, and that’s actually what brought us together, John, that’s what I just… I don’t know, defender, there’s a little piece of me that I just get so angry when good people are abused and not that you were being abused per se, I don’t think people are doing it on purpose, but how did you… This work of yours was being shared all around, first of all, people were actually pasting it to their walls as if they wrote it and… How did you kind of navigate that?
0:19:27.8 S2: So a couple of things. One, I didn’t consider myself a writer, I’m only in the last… Even though even if I published books, it took me a while to even admit who I’m a writer because you have these sacred words that feel like these golden caps that you can’t do anything with and being a writer or whatever it is, these titles… I didn’t think it was worthy of me at the time, so I had written this post in 2016, and it was the theme of it is that you don’t have to change who you are, you just have to become who you are meant to be like… We’re flooded these messages like, Oh, you need to change your behavior, you need to change this about yourself, you need to… The message of this post was this conversation before God, and it was about, I don’t really have to change, you just have to embrace who you are and embrace, you just have to become what you are meant to be, and it’s not about a change in your life, it’s more about becoming… And so I wrote this piece and it was probably a few months before you and I talked for the first time, I just like I did with all my writing at the time, I didn’t protect it, I just…
0:20:28.6 S2: I had this call and I still do it today. I do a little bit more advocating for myself and making sure my name is attached to things and ask people to add attribution, but I posted this conversation and I just put it on my Facebook wall, like I do all things, and I kinda consider little messages in a bottle and I put in the ocean and to see where it went, and then a couple of months later I noticed it was showing up to me being sent by other people, and then I started searching for it and noticing that it might have been changed instead of God, it was changed to Odin, where it was changed to of God, it was Goddess or whatever was universe, and I didn’t have an ego about that, I still don’t, even though I do consider myself like a real writer now, but I don’t really have an ego about it, I don’t get mad, I don’t get frustrated. I looked at it as an opportunity to kinda chase the post around the world, and so I would search for it, put some keywords in it, and then I would find it being shared by Otto place for a lot of people, and then I would just go and introduce myself and say, Hey, you know, this is my work.
0:21:33.8 S2: Thank you so much for sharing it. And I did that over and over for months while following it, from Denmark to India to wherever I went, and I met so many amazing people. You and I met, I think, in that process, and it was just… It’s been such a joy to kind of follow it and see what that has meant for other people, and when I wrote it, I wrote it for myself, I wasn’t trying to write it instructional-ly or give a prescription to the other people, I wrote it as like This is how I’m gonna get through the day by reading these words, I’m going to type out for myself and to see other people share it is even today, I went online a couple of days ago, and it’s still being shared in different forms, it’s still not always being attributed to me, and I still go in and I introduce myself and I just say thank you for sharing. And 99% of the time people are wonderful and are great about it, and we’ll add attribution and we’ll have a conversation and message back and forth, sometimes people get snooty, that’s okay.
0:22:30.8 S2: But so now that it’s been a great experience for me to meet so many people.
0:22:36.1 S1: So I’m gonna tell you how I react when I see that any of your work being shared, ’cause I can pretty much recognize it now, but… I’m gonna tell you what my next question is, you can start a persevering on the question. Okay, ’cause you know I’ll do that.
0:22:51.0 S2: You all do that.
0:22:53.2 S1: Well, you said, But I do wanna share how I handle it when I see her work being shared, but my next question is, you said, You know, I didn’t see myself as a writer then, and now I do. So my question is, how did you change… How did you take on ownership of something that so many of us already saw as the truth, ’cause it’s not more writing, ’cause when I saw your work, I saw you as a writer. I know a lot of people did, but you didn’t feel that, and I think for someone listening, whatever happened is probably going to be an answer that they need, so that’s a great question under that, and I will just tell you, listening and you John, mostly because I’m finding that people, when they find out that I can be a really crappy person. It gives them some solace. I don’t know why I believe me, my husband and children will tell… I mean, giant pain in the ass, a lot, but my first reaction, which I moderate like I don’t act on it, is I will cut you, if John’s name is not at the bottom of this piece, I will cut you…
0:24:07.3 S1: That is every single time, Joyce, A Friend Of Mine sharing it, talents my… It was funny, just having a few days ago, and your name is at the bottom a lot of the times, I would say 99% of the time now, and I’m like, it’s so fascinating that I’m still having this reaction like, Kenyon…
0:24:32.4 S2: I appreciate that it’s good to have you have my back out there, no, my wife has the same way and other people… Absolutely, and I should have more of that. There is the self-advocacy part of everything, I think what it took for me to kind of take ownership of this all that just kind of happened spontaneously, was when I started really talking to people and when they would share… I’ll get a lot of messages, private messages from people saying, This is how this piece of work helped me specifically in this moment, and people with some really heartbreaking tragic scenarios that I can’t imagine experiencing. I’ve gone through my own share of heartbreak and difficulty and trauma, but I’ll hear stories from people that really put my life in perspective, and at first I found they were telling me things that… It was hard for me to hear… I don’t do well, hearing positive feedback, I grow… I think I mentioned I went to a Catholic school, it wasn’t necessarily a hotbed of a positive reinforcement, it was.
0:25:34.1 S1: More… He did not train in positive psychology.
0:25:39.3 S2: Is they… They did not use the power of positive thinking, it was more avoid hell fire and no instruction. And so when people tell me these positive things, this is how your writing inspired me, my first inclination would be to try to talk them out of it and be like, No, it wasn’t anything about this piece of work that I read, I wrote… It just happened to hit you at the perfect time, and I would find myself giving excuses, they may be not saying it to anyone, but in my mind thinking, Well, this is just not being very nice, and this is just someone being very kind and doing that, but every time I did that, I was devaluing in a way What the work meant to them, I would be trying to put poo it all so much, put poo in myself, putting everything down to try to explain it for myself, and it has to do with my own work I’m still doing on self-esteem and self-growth and embracing who I am I still have those moments of self-doubt? And it took me just finally just saying, That’s all bullshit, and letting it go, and just saying, You are a writer and it’s not the sacred word, it’s not this thing that you can’t achieve, it’s not Mount Everest, you’re writing things that connect with the people and the more I leaned into that and the more I embraced that over the last year and a half, I think my work has gotten truer to me, I felt more connected to it once I finally got all this kind of fake…
0:27:02.4 S2: I don’t know, fake defense system, fake. It wasn’t fake humility because I really don’t have an ego when it comes to my work, but I was putting up all these barriers between me and readers because I didn’t think I was because I refused to accept that role as a writer, but… Yeah, I’m still working on it. I still like it, even though I wrote, I’ve written three books on poetry, when someone introduces me as a poet, I immediately grimace and I said, Well, no, I don’t wear a beret or a scarf, and I don’t snap my fingers, and I’m not a poet because we have this romantic idea what a poet would look like, and that’s just my conditioning upbringing that I’m still fleshing out in real time.
0:27:49.0 S1: Do you feel like owning that identity as a writer, or more importantly, letting go of… I know what you’re talking about, false humility. I don’t think it’s… It’s false, it’s that your effort in humility, because that’s what was sort of beaten into you as a small child is like, Be humble, right. Don’t, don’t brag. So you’re trying to almost… You’re humble, but you’re humble as a defense mechanism because you don’t wanna end up in hell or… For purgatory, do you think it has helped with your mental health or maybe it hasn’t, because mental health is obviously a chemical it…
0:28:33.4 S2: No, that’s a… No, no, that’s a good question. It has helped. Yeah, it has helped me because for most of my life, I’m now… In the autumn of my 40s, the 50 being 50 is coming up. For most of my life, I was untethered and did not have… If someone, if I went to a high school reunion at 30, Oh, you’re with your doctors, here’s your doctor friend, who’s your lawyer friend, here’s your CEO of a small business friend, Here’s your person who went into the military, everyone had a name and a job attached to them, I didn’t… I never did we rate… I was helping raise a child who was looking with a special needs, so I was a dad for a while until… He didn’t need me as much anymore. Before that, I helped run our family small business, but I didn’t know how any kind of vocation or those identifiers that we all feel like we need to have in our constant link in the world that we live in, where you need to tell people This is who we are, and this is what my worth is in the world, and I didn’t have anything to tell people, it’s like, what do you do? Even five years ago, what I tell them, Yes, I’m having conversations with God on Facebook as a job.
0:29:40.6 S2: That’s what I do, that’s my… I just didn’t know what to tell anyone and I didn’t know what to tell myself, so now that I’ve really kind of leaned into it and accepted, This is where I’m at right now in my life, that this kind of garden grew up around my feet without me, planning for it, it just kind of spontaneously happened… I have to say I have my upbringing as an improv and teaching improv, and the core tenant of that is yes, and you accept what the suggestion is from the audience, you suggest what’s happening, you accept what’s happening on stage and you just go with it and say, and what’s next? So I’ve taken the Improv kind of vein of this and said, Yes, okay, I’m a writer now, I don’t know how this happened, I don’t know where it’s going, but… And I’m gonna just keep doing it every day until it stops, and it might stop, I kinda look at myself as Steve Martin, maybe in a way that for a while, Steve Martin was known as just a comedian, and then Steve Morton became an actor, and then after that he became a novelist and screen writer, and then he became a painter, and then he picked up the banjo and he’s playing with Ed Patel and the new bohemians, and now he’s back doing other things, but he constantly changed how…
0:30:51.3 S2: And I heard I had a quote, and I’m gonna ruin the quote, but his heart would tell him when it was time to reflect the light in a different way and to try something else, and that’s what I feel like is kind of happening… I don’t know, five years from now, I’ll still be doing this, but I’m going to say yes to it right now while it’s happening.
0:31:12.4 S1: That is a beautiful answer, John and I have a dream of you at your next reunion, and I’m your name tag where someone else might have lawyer or doctor, you have talks to God, that would make me so happy. Job.
0:31:30.6 S2: And that would take me getting over the the… What is it? Been that shame, but just the embarrassment and worry about what does that mean and people… ’cause you’re exactly right. Well, you said a little bit ago about this humility, I did grow up in a family of scientists, my dad was a pharmacist, my mom was a single room school teacher with that very, very strict with a ruler and her hand, former teacher. My brother is an engineer with Xbox, very, very scientific, quiet, quiet people, and I always had this kind of expressive side to me that I always was nervous about it out because we were a very quiet family week, we would go to family parties with the entire extended family, and I would have this inclination to get up on a coffee table and do Jimmy Carter impressions or doing whatever I saw in saturday night live the night before, and my family would be like, You have got to keep it down, shutters, other people that need to be hurt for him, not just you. And I think it was that well-intended, and I find myself accidentally doing that with my own kids at times, quiet, not everyone in the world is revolving around you, kind of thing, but I think I took that too much to heart for most of my life is like, don’t make a commotion, don’t make a stir.
0:32:44.5 S2: Just kind of get through things without making it all about you, and so I still fight that, I still find that inner dialogue…
0:32:52.6 S1: And what’s so fascinating, just as you said, that last line, don’t make it all about you, is the reason your work is so healing for so many is because you need it about you, and by making it about you, every other person that reads what you write, feels less alone, so.
0:33:12.6 S2: That’s part of the word… Yes, that’s true. And that’s what happened early on, that I did not see coming, I thought I was just writing these things the first time I ever admitted I had depression, I had typed it out on a screen on Facebook and I was sitting there blinking at me. I never thought about it before, I never considered it. I had never identified that with me, it wasn’t until I wrote it out and I saw it sitting there, and it took me a while to make a couple of hours to decide whether to press… Published that post, but once I did, other people sort of contact me and say, Hey, I have this exact same thing, I’m going through this exact journey that you’re going on, and yes, it fed so many people, but it really fed me because I felt so alone, I live in a small town in Wyoming, we’re not necessarily the hot bed of mental health and emotional well-being, and why we’re kind of rub some dirt on it and put some barrier on it to get through things, and so talking about this stuff and where I lived, I felt so kind of isolated and alone, but the more I put these messages out there and put my own life out there, the more all of a sudden there was this intersection with all these other people showing up and it was like a park, and we’d all just sit there and visit and share where we’re at in our journey, and that’s kind of how I view it now, is I’ll share a part of my life, but it invites other people to come and share part of their life as well.
0:34:34.3 S1: Beautiful. Well, I could talk to you forever, but I do wanna make sure we tell people important things as they’re getting ready to hop off their Treadmills or get out of their car and going to work, or whatever it is you’re doing a home right now that… Maybe it’s time for you to go back and do something else, or maybe just sit there and think about this, where can they get your latest book, remedy? John…
0:35:04.3 S2: Oh, oh, remedy. Yes, so remedy, I released it in November. It is my latest kind of poems, and so these conversations with God all were like… My writing life began with these conversations back and forth between me and God, and eventually… And it all just became poetry, I never read poetry, I didn’t write poetry, I didn’t know anything about poetry until I started… It just started coming out. And so this latest collection is probably some that definitely my most personal poetry was most worried about having other people read, and it’s available on Amazon, and even ordered… Bookstores can order it, but it all goes through Amazon, so if you go to Amazon dot com and and put it John rode remedy in the Amazon master search and it’ll show up there, but bookstores can order it, most bookstores, Barns and Noble has been ordering it on a lot of independent bookstores finally can order it, so… Yeah, so that’s the best place to get it.
0:36:02.4 S1: Excellent, and we’ll put links to that in the show notes and where can they find you outside of your books on Amazon?
0:36:09.4 S2: Oh yeah, no. So a very creative website titled johnroedel.com, you could find me there. I have links to books and things like that, YouTube videos and stuff like that, and then on Facebook, I have my Facebook page, I’ve just kind of turned into a national park people, I just opened up my Facebook for my personal Facebook page just for whoever to come by and so yeah, you can find them on Facebook, just John Roedel. You could search that, I’ll pop up pretty quick. And Instagram @johnroedel on Instagram too, but that I do most. So I run my writing process, any writer out there, don’t follow this, I do all of my writing on social media right away, I don’t have any other programs or anything else like that, I just type everything on social media and I put it out immediately without editing or over-thinking in it, and then I let the collective group kind of helped me grammatically edit it after the fact, that’s a great way of crowdsourcing editing, and people will say, Oh no, I don’t understand what this means because you missed… And then I can go back and change it, but I do all my writing on social media and I try to do five or six pieces a week.
0:37:18.6 S1: So… Good, I love it. I love that that’s the way you do it. I believe in that process, John, and John is actually going to be the front of the stage at a couple of writing events, retreats, and I know you can find those on your Facebook page, I’ve seen that you put them there. Is that the best way for people to find… We’ll put some links below in the show notes too, to leave someone with some last thoughts, I normally let people just pick what they wanna say, and I’ll let you do that as well, but I did have a specific ask, which is… For the person listening right now Who is maybe held back through shame or false humility, please know that I know it’s not false Falls, do you have any advice for stepping into just letting it go and just owning who they are?
0:38:15.9 S2: Yeah, it’s gonna echo a little bit what I said earlier. But you are an individual piece of art that will never… Ever, ever exist again? Never existed before. We live in… Everything is about trying to clone each other and look the same and follow everyone’s trying to march the same path, but each of us were born as this unique singular moment, and if we hide that, if we deny it, if you don’t embrace that, you’re not only kind of cutting your story short and how wording of a story will be if you don’t embrace who you are, but the real crime of it is, is if you don’t really be who you’re meant to be and lean into that, think of all the countless lives out there of people who aren’t gonna get to feed off of that and to know and to see the gift of your life, and so they can find it in themselves, and that’s what I tell people is I write about my experience through depression and mental health, not as an expert or anything like that. But because I think it’s important for each of us to tell our story in a way that they can save the life of somebody else down the line, so me sharing how I’ve overcome some of my obstacles, maybe I tell a clumsy, maybe I don’t tell it the right, perfectly.
0:39:39.5 S2: But I tell it authentically, and maybe it will save the life of someone else down the line, so you listening, you live in your life and embracing who you are and coming and not hiding your light, you’re going to save the life of someone else down the line ’cause you’re gonna give them the courage and permission to do… To live the life that they’re supposed to have… And it’s kind of a chain reaction. It’s white plan, its tag, I’m tagging you so you can tag someone else down the line, and that’s our responsibility for one another to help each other to embrace who we are, and the best way we can do that is to live our lives authentically.
0:40:18.5 S1: Yes, nothing to add there. Awesome. Well, please, please. We grab John’s book, his work is amazing. And we’ll put all those links in the show notes. John, thank you so much for being here with me.
0:40:32.7 S2: Oh my gosh, thank you so much. Two times on the third time. We’ll definitely do… We’ll do live… We’ll do a live video on my third time, we’ll do tattoos, we’ll do a synchronized tattoos or something… Yes, or something or something.
0:40:47.4 S1: Or maybe just a tattoo for you.
0:40:49.8 S2: Or maybe just like a sticker. We’ll figure something out.
0:40:54.7 S1: Oh my goodness, you’re in love. Alright, have a great week everyone. And check out John’s book. Have a great day, bye. Hey, thanks for listening. If you know someone who needs to hear this message, please share this episode with them, and if you’re feeling really generous, I’d love for you to leave us a review at your favorite podcast app, it helps us reach many more people, and it fills my heart with so much joy when I hear what you have to say about what I’ve shared. I’m cheering for your success, have an amazing day, and don’t forget. Always create space for Magic. This podcast is part of the Sound Advice network. Sound advice, FM, women’s voices, amplified.
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