In this episode, we delve into the vibrant world of Laura Hess, a master coach with over two decades of experience in transformational coaching who specialises in guiding women aged 59 and beyond into their encore years, gracefully and with resilience, towards living with purpose and joy in their encore years.



Today, my guest is the lovely Laura Hess. Laura is a transformational coach and her journey started over 20 years ago. She published a gem of a resource – a small booklet called The Joy Test. Packed with 100 reminders of how and where we can find and leverage joy in our day-to-day lives. It became a cornerstone of Laura’s coaching philosophy.

Now a renowned resource. When I first started working with Laura as a business coach, she sent me a print copy. And I can tell you it’s a delightful and very actionable resource for self-care. I keep it by my bedside!

Laura brings a wealth of experience and pioneering spirit to her coaching work. Running life-changing group masterminds with our husband Philip Cohen, under that push the envelope business brand. Laura and Phillip are pioneers in the field of coaching. They were the first couple of coaching, instrumental in founding the profession and in promoting coaching to people in business as a success strategy. Thousands of clients later, they remain at the top of their game in their field.

Laura introduces her latest passion, project, joy coaching aimed at empowering women to redefine their post-career lives and “encore” years, gracefully, purposely, and above all, joyfully.

The phrase that Laura has on her website is that finding joy is not just about navigating life’s next phase, it’s about transforming it, by infusing your life with a deeper sense of fulfilment and serenity.

In the episode, Laura discusses the unique challenges and opportunities that come with entering the encore years. Through our conversation, Laura, she has a profound insight and the unique strategies she employees to help women navigate this exciting phase of life. She addresses common concerns, such as maintaining health and vitality, managing finances to support lifestyle changes and finding new purposes and connections without the structure of full-time work.

Laura’s holistic approach gums beyond coping strategies. Encouraging women to thrive by embracing joy, intention and creativity in this pivotal life phase.  Tune in to explore how you can embrace and shape your uncle years into a joyfully epic chapter of life.

Listeners will gain invaluable insights into:

  • The Joy Coaching Initiative: How Laura’s new coaching model helps women navigate their encore years with enthusiasm and strategic planning.
  • The Path to Joy: Laura explains her comprehensive program that covers health, finances, social connections, and purpose—critical elements for a fulfilling encore life.
  • Empowering Personal Stories: Insights into the transformative journeys of women who have reinvented their lives through Laura’s coaching.
  • Practical Joy-Focused Strategies: From daily rituals to major lifestyle adjustments, Laura offers advice on how to cultivate a joy-filled life every day.



JAY: Today I’ve got Laura Hess. Welcome to the Leveraged Business Podcast, Laura, it’s really great to have you here.

LAURA: Really a pleasure to be here.

JAY: Fantastic.

So, this Rising Resilient series started as a seed of an idea back in the summer, because one of the things that comes up a lot in the coaching that I do with people is their ability to just keep going in the face of setbacks and, you know, personal stuff and all sorts of things that life throws at us. The word resilient kept coming up. And also, the focus of my business is helping people work smarter not harder, so they don’t fall into burnout territory. And again, resilience is part of that. It’s finding ways to manage your own emotional ups and downs, like get up after setbacks and “failures”, you know, how do you keep going?

The sub theme is tackling challenges and changes in your life and business with confidence, compassion, and courage. And as soon as I landed on those C-words, a number of people out of my client base were popping up who I know have something really important to offer here, particularly women entrepreneurs.

Let me start by asking: what part of the theme speaks to you the most and why?

LAURA: Rising above the challenges really speaks to me, and I’ve seen it, especially after Covid I don’t think there’s a woman that I’ve spoken to who has not experienced the challenges, especially these last couple of years. That they have had to pull back and say now what? And being able to do that and come out on the other side stronger makes all the difference.

And it’s really what I work with my people on, too. It’s not necessarily coming out of a COVID. But, you know, the challenges that we face day to day, and you’ve said it life throws all kinds of things at us. Most of which we’re not prepared for, nor did we plan for. And what we do with it is going to set the stage for what comes next.

So it’s how do you manage the challenges and still get up in the morning and face the day?

JAY: Yeah, yeah, I love what you said there, come out the other side stronger. Sometimes, you feel like you’re surviving, but you’re not necessarily thriving. So, I love the way you’ve worded that.

Resilience Transitioning from Work to Retirement

Let’s just go back to some context. Tell us a little bit about the work that you do. Who do you help? How do you help them?

LAURA: My market specifically, I work with women who are 59 and over. And they’re at the place in their life where they’re looking at moving out of the workforce. So, they’re either selling a business or letting go of a business or leaving a job and career, and they’re moving into what’s next. And most of them haven’t given a lot of thought to what’s next. They just think, okay, great. This is like, I don’t have to be busy and stressed anymore. I can do whatever I want. But on the other side, it really isn’t like that.

So they’re not prepared for what life is like after working.

JAY: Tell me about that. On the other side, it’s not really like that. What do you mean?

LAURA: Well, they can’t just step into it and start enjoying life. I mean, some of them are blessed and able to do that easily, but most of them, what I have heard from the people I’m working with is that they haven’t planned, so they don’t know what they want to do. They feel sort of rudderless, without purpose.


Social Connections and Identity After Career

And the other thing they don’t count on when they leave a career, that that is typically where their whole social connection is and they haven’t planned on what they’re going to do for social connection when that’s gone because all of their connections are still working.

JAY: Sometimes. Yeah.

LAURA: So, they’re not available to go to coffee or have high tea or whatever it is they want to do or travel. So, how do they find that connection and that social engagement. Yeah. So they have a plan for that and many of them think, oh good I’ll have more time to spend with my family, forgetting that family is at a different stage in their life. And they’ve got a life. Yeah. So, they’re not going to be as involved as they think they’re going to be.

And families are different social engagement than friends and, you know, absolutely, and even best-friends kind of thing.

JAY: I think the other thing that came up when you’re speaking there was, work’s also a really big part of someone’s identity.


JAY: And so sometimes when you stop you might feel that you’ve lost, not just purpose but like the whole thing about who am I.

LAURA: Right, right. So that self, the self-awareness, and a big piece of that is tied into purpose. What am I doing here and why should anybody listen to me? Or why do I need to even be here?

And that, it is identity. Who am I? You know, my job, this is who I was. And I mean, that’s true through every phase of our life. We identify so closely with the roles we’re playing, instead of who we really are.

JAY: Yeah. So, sounds like a joke, but it’s not. It’s sort of an existential crisis that can happen when you stop work. Is that what you’re alluding to?


JAY: Yeah. Yeah. Interesting.

Because there are so many shifts that happen. It’s a major life transition.


Laura’s Journey to Coaching and Creation of The Joy Test

JAY: What got you into this? where are you coming from in the sense that this was your market, as you said, that you chose, why this market?

LAURA: I’ll see if I can make this a short answer. I created the joy test 20 years ago, and it has been part of my life the whole time. But in 2018, I had a medical crisis myself. And as I was lying in the hospital bed, not knowing if I was going to be leaving the hospital or not, the thought just kept coming up. Well, if I’m leaving the hospital, there has to be more. There has to be joy in my life because it’s just fragile. We just don’t know.

And when I did leave the hospital, I said, I need to be working with the joy test, but for the next four and a half years or so, I just shifted to women business owners because I wanted them to have joy and love their business again. And I thought that was the best I could do to serve these people. But as I was working in it, the motivation that I know I’m capable of wasn’t there. And I was, I was having my own crisis at that point because what I was doing wasn’t touching on joy deeply enough.

So I said, who would I better serve? And as I was having a conversation with my husband, we came to the people who I can serve better are women like me- women who are having the same kind of crisis, not because of a medical issue, but because they’re facing the transition into something that is an unknown, and life is going to change and they’re in that big questioning mode of what, what am I going to do?

JAY: Yeah.

LAURA: Why am I here? What’s my life going to be about? How am I going to fill my time? And it was, it was really, it’s women like me that I want to be working with.

JAY: Yeah, which comes back to finding your purpose again, doesn’t it really?

LAURA: Right, exactly. It’s finding your purpose, finding your social connection, taking care of the money and the health issues, and you know, finding the joy and, you know, I’m calling them little glimmers because they happen to us every day. We just don’t pay attention.

JAY: Yeah. Very true. Very true. I mean, it’s one of the great reasons for having you as part of this series is because when we talk about resilience, it’s often we’re in the trenches, like we’re trying to survive, thrive, do well, grow, you know, be stronger and all of those things.

And what I find is sometimes people come to business in this kind of space of like, who am I? What’s my purpose on this planet? And so not necessarily 59 plus, but even that typical midlife crisis kind of thing, where you’re asking what’s my calling. And people really get stuck, they talk about trying to find their niche in business and they kind of find a narrowing down their audience and it’s partly because they’re trying to find themselves.


The Interplay Between Joy and Gratitude, and Overcoming Crisis

JAY: So, it’s really great to connect with that. We’re all trying to find joy and fulfilment. Joy kind of keeps you going and makes it worth it and fulfilment is like that calling.

LAURA: It is, and there’s a bigger piece of this too Jay, in that joy can be found even in the midst of crisis. And it’s one of the things that helps carry us through. But you have to experience joy and understand it and make it a part of your life before that can be true for you.

JAY: It’s kind of like brain training.

LAURA: Yes, it is. Absolutely like that. It’s like, you know, gratitude was getting a lot of play and still does that, you know, practice gratitude in your day. It’ll change your life. Well, that’s absolutely true. But until you build that muscle, you don’t get it.

JAY: Yeah. What do you see as the, as the interplay or the difference between joy and gratitude in this?

LAURA: I think gratitude is a component of joy.

JAY: Yeah. Or it’s a precursor.

LAURA: Yes. Yeah. If you are in a state of joy, or if you live your life in joy, then gratitude is a natural by-product. But, if you haven’t gotten to joy yet, then you start practicing gratitude and you grow into the joy. Joy sort of settles in because it can’t help it.


Leveraging ‘The Joy Test’ in Daily Life

JAY: So just to touch on The Joy Test you sent me that through the post it’s a little booklet with a hundred, it’s about a hundred a hundred points, a hundred points in it, which I have now in the drawer in my bedside cabinet, not on the top, but even so, I’ve now developed the habit of whipping it out of the drawer and like, you know, when you need it. Because if we’re doing this brain training and we’re practicing gratitude, it’s like we need some prompts. And it’s a very rich source of prompts of help.

Sometimes it’s like meditation. People say, I don’t know how to meditate. Well, okay, here’s some things that you might try. And so I loved it for that. Is there a way for people to get hold of it? I know we’re working on some of these things, but like, how do they get hold of it if they wanted to look at it? Is it on Amazon?

LAURA: They’ll need to contact me directly because it isn’t available anyway. It’s something that I send to people, so it’s not even available on the website at this point, but they can send me an email. It’s going to reprint now because 20 years ago, I was a very different person. My training was very different. So, it’s being updated now. Yeah. And modernized a little bit and it will be coming out soon.

JAY: Yeah. Yeah. It’s one of the things we talked about when we first met and when you came on as my client and it’s like, what do we do with this rich resource and how do we get it to more people and how do we, you know, have it make more of an impact and how does it fit into everything else that you do working with your client?

And something as simple as a booklet, it’s amazing how much power is in that little booklet.


Real-Life Impacts of Coaching for Navigating Major Life Challenges


LAURA: Well, and one of the people that I gave this booklet to 20 years ago, I gave it to her one week and we had lunch a week or two later. She pulled it out of her purse and she said, because of this, we’re going to Ecuador and we’re going to live there.

JAY: Wow.

LAURA: Okay, good. Dreams come true.

Yeah, it was like it filled my heart and they went and lived there. They just came back to the States. But they went and lived there for nine years. She said it was a happy, happy, happy time for them.

JAY: What I’m hearing is: resilience isn’t all about pushing, pushing through, right. And rising above even. That’s what you opened with. It’s also about giving yourself space to make the right decisions for yourself. Is that, yeah. You might put it a better way.

LAURA: It isn’t always about pushing. – resilience itself – I think it’s about being able to stay with yourself, stay true to yourself and keep putting one foot in front of the other. It is the grace you give yourself to move through challenging times.

JAY: I love that.

LAURA: It’s not something we are prone to do.

JAY: Yeah, I’ve talked in other interviews about like high achiever types and many business owners are, you know, just by virtue of the choices that they’ve made. They do push themselves and they beat themselves up when they don’t do as much or as well as they wanted to. These high achiever types are hard to please themselves because they’re always moving on to the next challenge and the next thing and they don’t stop. and think about that.

But the grace you give yourself really ties into some of the things that have come up around compassion, self-compassion, in that sense.

LAURA: Yes. And a lot of the work that I do is helping women to really know themselves better. Because in our work time when we’re doing the job, we often don’t take the time to really connect with ourselves. I mean, how many people do you know, men and women who say, I just don’t have the time to do those kinds of things. I have all of these deadlines to meet and then I have to go home and be with my kids and then I have to sleep and wake up and do it all over again.

JAY: And that’s the self-care and, being yourself, taking that space to get back to base, to sort of reset, as somebody said, it feels like another doing thing, whereas what you want to do is switch the mindset to more of a being thing, right?

LAURA: Yeah. When I first got into coaching and I started coaching in 94, so it’s been a while but my coach worked really hard with me to not be in the doing mode. To just “be” -and one of our calls, we were having it and she was, we were having this great philosophical discussion about being and all of this. So, we’re getting ready to close the call. I said, okay, now what do I do? And she just cracked up and I, you know, she just, she said, you don’t do anything. I don’t know how to do that.

You know, it’s a real lesson, but the ‘being’ is where the gift is. Sure. I mean, there’s a balance when you’re building a business. If you’re, there are people that are, are very much in the being space and they need to be pulled back into the doing, but it’s that balance. And I think for high achiever types in my experience is they are unbalanced, and more towards the doing than the being and that’s where they’re losing. I think some of that getting in touch with yourself and being true to yourself piece that you’ve just shared.

JAY: So, look if you if you’ve got someone comes to you, and they said they’re feeling a bit lost. They’re stopping working or they’ve stopped working and they’re realizing they’re in this kind of empty place, how would you start working with somebody like that? What would be like the first things that you’d want to do with them?

LAURA: Yeah, we’re gonna do with them.

There isn’t a formula that is the same for everybody. When a woman comes to me to start working because she’s in this space, I’m going to start with an extended conversation and we’re going to dive deep into what’s up for her, what makes her tick, where her heart is, and how she sees her future. And then, you know, we pull back and start working on some of the details and the foundation.


The Domino Effect

If joy is the ultimate reward here, then what we’re going to do is work on the areas of her life where joy is going to make the biggest impact and in effect create a domino.

Hmm. That’s going to just change everything else. So, we’re looking for the domino that, when we hit it, it’s going to knock the rest of them down.

That’s a great way of putting it. It’s interesting because when I look at the process. WE go through working with a business client is we start with vision and values, as you know. And part of that is so that we’re always tethered. To not only what motivates people that you can say when the going gets tough, remember your like why you’re doing this, but it’s also to make sure that when you’re growing the business, you end up the place where you want to be, right? You end up running the business that makes you happy that not just generates revenue, but generates fulfillment and generates joy.


So it’s very similar to anything that you do in life, it’s like, where is it taking you. And I was thinking about those like wheels of life, you know, we talk about balance and things you’ve got the wheel of life and you’ve got the different elements. We talked about family and friends and social engagement as one element of that, is very important to help people stay balanced and, you know, rooted. But there’s a whole bunch of those things.

So what’s coming up for me is we want to try and create some kind of balance so that you’re not emptying any one particular tank. Cause I think that’s what goes against being resilient. I think if you keep your tanks, you know, 70 percent full, reasonably balanced, then that’s where resilience is the outcome. That’s how I’ve always thought about it. But what I’m hearing from you is, is that with this domino metaphor, is there’s usually one kind of thing that’s really going to be the turning point, perhaps.

Right, right. And depending on where she is in this process. It may be too early in the process for her to even vision anything because she has to create space for her to just kind of step into that.


And make no plans. I mean, it’s loss. Yes. It’s like a death. So, she has to create the space to greet that loss before she starts making any big decisions. But that’s a great space for her to do exploration, both of interests and self, and make some discoveries. And just relax.

Yeah. And relaxing is really hard, especially for hired. Yeah, they want to be doing; they want to be doing the doing, right? I hear that a lot. It’s a real tug of war for that person. I think one of the things you’re doing as a coach is just creating that space.


Quietening the noise and lowering the anxiety and say it’s okay to be in this space for a while.

Well, and that’s a great way to put it because I just give her permission to be, which they have never had before, nor do they give themselves permission.

Yeah, yeah.

So to hear somebody say this is okay, can help them turn that corner and let it be okay. That doesn’t make it easy. But it’s okay.

I mean, I’ve been through something similar as well. I mean, it’s probably about six or seven, definitely seven years ago, where I had a health crisis and I was just very fatigued and, you know, it zaps everything and I was always a very much an energetic, get stuff done. Always big dreams, goals. Never, I’ve never been bored. I’m never a person that’s bored. I’ve always got, you know, projects. And I just physically wasn’t able to, to do them. And like mentally as well, that goes.

And I kind of retired, like 80 percent retired. And I hit then that kind of like, well, this is a great time to think about what should I do?


Strategies for Maintaining Joy and Purpose


JAY: So, the question I’ve got for you, Laura, is how long is it okay to sit in that space for? And I kind of suspect your answer is as long as it takes. But generally speaking, what have you found from the people you’ve helped?

LAURA: Well, you’re right, my answer is as long as it takes, because for some people it’s a month, for some people it’s a year. So, there isn’t anything magical. But when I’m working with somebody, I tell them, plan a year. If it takes less, great, but plan a year, and give yourself that space to not have to have any decisions made.

JAY: And it wouldn’t be an empty year, would it. I mean, you’re still moving forward.

LAURA: Well, yes – you’re doing explorations. What are all the things on your list that you wanted to try, you know, throwing clay or travel or gardening or sitting quietly with a book. When was the last time somebody sat and read quietly with a book. People don’t do that a lot anymore. And yet my generation grew up reading.

JAY: Yeah. Oh, no, I know. And it’s actually one of the things, especially when you’ve gone digital, it doesn’t feel the same. It’s not the same.

LAURA: It doesn’t.

JAY: Well, that’s another conversation.

LAURA: Right.

JAY: You’ve mentioned a couple of people. I mean, I’m not asking for names, but can you give me another sense of like a real life example of, you know, how you’ve turned things around for someone?

LAURA: Yeah. I have a client who lost her husband recently, and it was a sudden passing, and as expected, her world turned upside down. And we worked together for Well, we’ve been working together for years, and she’s been a client off and on for probably 25 years. But in this instance, she needed to just, I mean, she is the case of stop what you’re doing, nothing has to be done right now, do what you need to do to grieve, and step into what it means now to be a widow.

And she was in that space. And became comfortable in it.

By the end of the fourth month, still grieving and still crying and all of the things that we do, but she was starting to be able to look forward, not to make any hard fast decisions, but to move forward. And as she explored her new life. She allowed herself to reach out and start doing some of the things that she had thought about while he was still alive.

And it’s been a year now, and she is now restarting her business and launching workshops and doing online training. And she shifted from the career that she used to have because she just didn’t want to do it anymore to doing more virtual and more heart work, which is who she’s always been anyway.

But doing corporate work, the heart doesn’t come into it a lot. So now she’s allowed herself to do the heart work that fills her up, brings her joy, and makes a difference for the people that she’s working with. But she had to create that empty space to be able to grieve without pressure to do.

JAY: Yeah, I mean, and that’s a lesson for us, even if we’re not going through a grief or a transition.


JAY: And it leads to my next question: what you do for yourself. Because often we find ourselves just noticing a bit of disquiet or uneasiness, a bit of restlessness, where you’re just thinking, I’m not where I want to be or I’m not doing what I should be doing or feel I should be doing. When those sorts of feelings start to creep in, how do you personally rise above that and take charge?

LAURA: That’s exactly where I was when I came to this 59+ women like me. So, I was in that space. I’m not doing what I’m supposed to be doing. This isn’t bringing me joy. I need something else. Number one is I pay attention to my body signals. I know that I’ve got an unrest in my gut that happens when change is happening for me. I know when that is happening, it indicates that something is going to be, something big is going to change on the other side.

So often, all I need to do is sit with it and it resolves. But most often I need to reach out and find somebody to talk it through with, you know, I’m blessed because I have a husband who is also a coach and he knows how to listen. So I can often talk to him and work out what I need to work out -not necessarily come to decision, but at least get it out of me so that the universe can now take care of providing the answers, which happens.

I also have a very strong connection with a couple of women friends here in town. And if something comes up and I need something, I could pick up the phone and call any of them any time and they would be there for me. And heck, I have a coach I can call.

JAY: I was going to say, what am I doing here? [LAUGHS] There’s a couple of things. One is like that feeling, you know, we say, oh, I felt it in my gut. It’s kind of what you’re saying, literally. Yeah. Yeah, and your body does respond to what the brain’s doing.

LAURA: It’s heart and gut for me.

JAY: Yeah, yeah, well everything’s connected.

LAURA: Yeah, yeah.

JAY: We talk about gut instinct quite a lot and resilience comes from trusting your gut. And as an entrepreneur, that’s incredibly important. But you’re saying you literally feel it in your insides.

LAURA: Oh, I absolutely do.

JAY: Yeah, I’m the same. I’m the same. Yeah. And it’s that uneasiness. It could just be a little thing that it builds up.

LAURA: Because in another lifetime, I was a CPA, and I was working for a big firm – at the time it was a big 8 firm, which there aren’t any big eights anymore, but at the time I was working for a big firm, and it was the wrong place for me. When I’d go in in the morning and press the elevator button, my stomach would just start start spasming. And I did that for a while. And finally I said, I can’t do this anymore.

JAY: Yeah. You create so much anxiety and you know, your cortisol is going up and down, up and down. It’s interesting because my experience of that was also with one of those firms. I was always feeling like I was treading on eggshells and stepping outside the lines and, you know, it was very stressful. I think it’s called the big four now and the one I work for was like number six.

Anyway, that’s a whole different story.


Laura’s Resilience Superpower


JAY: This has been brilliant and it’s brought a whole different angle to the discussions. My final question is related to what works best for you personally, it’s like your positive superpower for rising resilient. I know it’s joy, but how do you use that to help yourself and help your clients? If you could zap it, what would be the zap?

LAURA: Knowing what brings me joy and doing it. You know, one of my joyful activities, the things that I love to do is write physical notes to people.

And, you know, it’s a practice that I started when I started my coaching business, and it was a marketing thing, purely marketing back then. I use notes all the time, for all kinds of people and the joy that I get just in writing a message to somebody and then putting, you know, writing the address and putting a real stamp on it and putting it in the mailbox and then hearing their response when they get it.

I have never had anybody tell me they didn’t love getting them. I mean, the first thing I hear from people when I see them after sending them something is I loved your note. It came at exactly the right time.

JAY: Yeah.

LAURA: And it does. I mean, I used to send sparkles in the notes that I sent – glitter, glitter things – and most people just laughed about it and loved it. I had one person who said, don’t ever do that to me again.

JAY: Yeah, because it went everywhere.

LAURA: Well, yeah, it wasn’t like the really fine sparkle it but it was confetti glitter. Still, it does go everywhere.

JAY: Well, I love that. And like knowing what brings you joy and doing it.

LAURA: It’s not just one thing.

JAY: Yeah, exactly.

LAURA: It’s, you know, the kitchen brings me joy, so I can go in and cook. I don’t always feel like cooking, but that’s one of the things that’s joy. Being outside in my garden brings me joy. Reading brings me joy. You know, there are so many things in my world that make my heart sing. And if I find something that makes me feel expanded. Then that’s a joyful process for me and I’m going to follow it.

JAY: And my example of that is every time I’m out for a walk in nature – that’s my go to place, right – I absolutely love it and I’m like breathe in the air and I’m looking at the sky and I’m like celebrating. It’s very joyful. And that’s what gives me my self-care and my resilience. However, I’m looking out the window, it’s raining, it’s dark, it’s really cold, and so …

LAURA: And then you have to go into the kitchen and cook something. I mean, that’s what I would do on a rainy day.

JAY: The thing is, I have to train myself.


JAY: I’ve just got to get over this resistance, because I know when I’m out there, it’s going to fill me up, right?

But you don’t even have to go for a walk if being outside is what does it for you.

JAY: Well, exactly.

LAURA: Take a cup of tea with you and go out on the porch and enjoy for, you know, five minutes and come back.

JAY: Totally, totally. But it’s kind of setting that up for yourself.


JAY: A couple of things I’ve got from that, just that, that last bit, is make a list of things so that you at least do one of them. Even if you chicken out of going for the walk because it’s rainy and cold outside then do something else instead.

We talk about self-care plans when we’re running big events and things like that. So it could be a mental self-care, it could be a physical self-care, it could be a social self-care, so mixing it up.

But what I’m getting from what you said is like, make the list and then make sure that you’re ticking some of the things off. Still feels a bit like a doing thing. But there’s a reward system in there.

LAURA: Yeah, and I actually do this with my clients, but I have them build or make, create a joy jar. And it doesn’t have to be a jar, it can be a book or box or anything, but someplace that you can use to put pieces of paper that you write down things that bring you joy. And it’s time for a joyful thing. You just grab one of those papers and, you know, Do what it says.

Now, if it says go out for a walk, and it’s rainy and cold and you don’t want to do that you put it back into something else.

JAY: Yeah, it creates a game for yourself.

LAURA: Yeah. If we really think about it and be intentional, then you can come up with hundreds of things that bring you joy.

JAY: Absolutely. So, the first step feels like, you know, brainstorm it and, or do it as you go and put it in a jar and getting into those habits, and making it like a reward. Like those are all the things like that’s the goodie jar.

LAURA: Yeah, it is. It really is.

JAY: Whereas sometimes if you just write them on a list, it feels like a doing thing. Rather than a spoiling yourself thing somehow.

LAURA: Right.

And this is kind of a fun thing because you pick out a piece of paper and you don’t know what’s gonna be on it. Yeah. It also gets to be a surprise.

JAY: Yeah. Play it with your family as well. You can have, everyone has their own jar.

LAURA: Right.

JAY: I remember one family they used to do, I think it was actually in a movie rather than an actual family. It’s way back. I can’t quite remember, but they would always at the dinner table, they say, what was the highs of your day? And what’s the lows? I prefer positive appreciation, appreciative inquiry, because I think the negatives have a way of surfacing anyway.

That’s why we’re really big on celebrating wins and gratitude and all of those things because it allows you to rise above, which is where you, what you opened with.

LAURA: And you’re right, the negative has a way of showing up no matter what, the positive we tend to not even acknowledge and just move beyond.

JAY: Yeah, yeah. And I think that’s culturally as well. I mean, in the UK, maybe even Europe, I think we’re not so good at that. It’s like, when you ask someone, how are you, typical response in Britain is, Oh, not too bad. And what a response is that? Very interesting. Whereas you go to America, I always find you go, how’s your day?

And they go, great! How is yours? I don’t know. There’s a culture. We just downplay everything.

LAURA: Well, we can lie just as easily as you can.

JAY: Anyway, this has been absolutely lovely. It’s a joy, Laura, to speak with you. Thank you very much.

LAURA: For me as well, Jay.

JAY: Fantastic. And everyone’s bringing a different angle, so it makes it so interesting. Thank you so much.

LAURA: Yeah. This has been great. Thank you.

JAY: Have a great weekend and we’ll catch up soon.

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