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“EVOLVE: A New Era Of Leadership” is a podcast evolving the concept of leadership. Of the human spirit. And showcasing people worth talking to. Hosted by Carolyn Swora

Episodes 1 to 10

Evolve: An Introduction into a New Era of Leadership

Welcome to Evolve: A New Era of Leadership. In this short, introductory episode I’ll share why and what I hope to accomplish with this podcast.

Leadership isn’t what it used to be. It’s not about telling people what to do. It’s about inspiring people to become the greatest version of themselves. I believe we do that by learning how to evolve who we are.

You can expect deep, meaningful conversations with leaders, practitioners and people committed to building healthy workplaces. We will explore how self-awareness is fundamental to trauma-informed leadership and how to integrate head, heart and body in our leadership approaches.

This podcast is for resilient and capable people committed to leadership and looking for ways to make profound changes in their relationships with productivity, achievement and themselves. Burnout and frustration is no longer an option. I see you. You are not alone. Let’s take a walk down a new path of leadership and evolve together.

Taking Self Awareness to a New Level in Leadership with Jennifer Bauer

Welcome to the first episode of the Evolve podcast! We’re starting things off with a lesson in self-awareness in order to become the best leader you can be for your business. Looking for how to be an innovative leader connected with your body? Tune in.

This week, Jennifer Bauer and I sit down to discuss sacrificing the need to be right and how most of our work problems are often old wounds trapped in the body that need a closer look. Jenn is a public speaker, author, and master Wayfinder coach who generously opens up about her struggles with perfectionism and multiple layoffs before welcoming the discomfort and launching an incredibly successful holistic coaching business.

We discuss:

  • How emotions are stored in the body and how they’re more often than not responsible for how we react to certain things
  • How getting stuff done and the need to be right does not mean the same thing!
  • Learning to have compassion for yourself after recognizing your triggers and responses
  • An inside look into somatic therapy and how treatment works

Being the Driver of Your Nervous System with Brittany Lynn Wellness

We spend a lot of time thinking about our physical bodies like which foods are best to eat and how much exercise we should do, but we don’t spend a lot of time talking about our emotional body, and nervous system.

Learning how to regulate our nervous systems and being self-aware about our emotional states can do wonders for our overall well-being. So today, I’m joined by Brittany McCann, a Functional Nutritionist and Somatic Therapist who guides me through the different frequencies of our emotional states and gives us the tools to put ourselves back in the driver’s seat of our nervous system.

We discuss:

  • The three states of emotion and how to oscillate between them in a healthy, manageable way
  • What happens when we get stuck in a lower vibrational emotional state and how that impacts our ability to be happy
  • The true meaning of grounding yourself and how to tackle triggers when they strike

Connect with Brittany:
Facebook Community:

Transform Your Relationship With Stress with Lisa Burchartz

So many of us struggle with cultivating a healthy relationship with stress we find ourselves falling into the trap of burnout, hyper-arousal and false productivity. We’re praised for constantly working in an anxious doing energy without ever checking in with our nervous system or allowing ourselves to understand what the feelings in our bodies truly mean.

So what preventative measures can we take? Today I’m joined by the wonderful Lisa Burchartz, a Somatic Coach & Facilitator and Stress Alchemist who’s here to help us transform our relationship with stress. We talk about how Lisa went from high-performing stress addict to understanding her nervous system and incorporating daily practices to help her maintain a healthy balance in everything she does.

We discuss:

  • How understanding our inner experience and the stories we tell ourselves can be an essential leadership tool to avoid unhappiness and frustration in the workplace
  • That we can’t sweep our feelings under the rug! Ignoring our nervous system can often lead to them manifesting as physical illnesses
  • Whether the “right question to ask” really exists to facilitate a healthy working environment as a leader?

Connect with Lisa:

Name, Claim & Reframe with guest Andrea DeWitt

Name, Claim and Reframe with Andrea DeWitt

Self-awareness is not a destination, it’s a journey. In order to be a great leader, being self-aware can take us to a whole new level of consciousness and success. Today I’m joined by Andrea DeWitt, the author of the incredible book ‘Name, Claim and Reframe’. We dissect her framework and explore the magic of finding our truth to become the best versions of ourselves. We discuss the importance of knowing our personal values so we can choose resonate actions that line up with them and using honesty as a tool to disarm our colleagues.

We discuss:

  •  Balancing and embodying our masculine and feminine energies in the workplace

  • Looking at the bigger picture and seeing what serves you

  • How Covid impacted us by challenging our values and forced us to be honest with ourselves

  • How to use our energies with intention and recognize our energy boundaries

 Connect with Andrea:

‘Name, Claim and Reframe: Your Path to a Well Lived Life’ is available wherever books are sold.


What it Really Means to Feel Safe in the Workplace with Teo Pile

When we talk about safety in the workplace, we often think having a roof over our heads and good air conditioning does the job. But what we’re really talking about are those inner subconscious stories you tell yourself when you get an email from your boss and suddenly your heart rate skyrockets. What does this mean?

Join me and my guest this week, Teo Pile, as we discuss anxiety in the workplace, the key to a sound mind and body connection and breaking free from nervous system protection mode. Teo is a Somatic Trauma and Nervous System Coach who guides women to untangle the traumatic cues of their body and symptoms to rebuild safety and self-trust. We also get a glimpse into how Teo transformed her entire life after tapping into more self-agency and choice.

We discuss:

  • How constantly operating in a space of protection will impact our conversations and actions

  • How to release yourself from the “I always need to be doing something” mentality and bring your body back into connection

  • That coregulation with your colleagues is also an option and we don’t always have to figure everything out on our own

Connect with Teo:

How the Corporate Ladder Isn’t Built to Withstand Unresolved Trauma with Lucie Ritchie

Believe it or not, our bodies are designed for trauma, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have to face it or try to heal from it in order to be successful leaders. My guest this week, Lucie Ritchie, guides us through how trauma can impact our leadership abilities and that our search for compassion is a lot closer to home than we think. Lucie is a Psychotherapist passionate about helping others heal from unresolved trauma. Our conversation covers the whole range from concentrating on the body to process trauma, looking inward to find compassion and recognizing that our patterns do not dictate who we truly are inside.

We discuss:

  • How trauma isn’t just reserved for the huge catastrophic moments in our lives

  • How the corporate ladder isn’t built to withstand unresolved trauma but instead will lead to frustration and burnout

  • How to lower reactivity by engaging in physiological practices like 3-6 breathing and letting our conscience lead our decisions

Connect with Lucie:

The Proven Tool to Humanize your Workplace with Greg Swaine

Psychological safety in the workplace means you are creating synergy throughout an organization and creating a culture that encourages innovation and belonging, which humanizes the work experience to feel safer. It is not about pointing fingers but about working together for a common cause. Our conversation covers a range of topics such as the definition of psychological safety, the Canadian standard and what the benefits are for both employee and employer alike. 

We discuss:

  • What psychological safety means for employers and employees.

  • Why the Canadian standard is treated as a living organism instead of a one-size-fits-all framework to establish a healthy psychological safety environment which highlights the problem areas in an organisation.

  • Frontline level strategies for organisations to address the top 2 problems they face based on employee feedback gathered in real time.

  • The benefits and ROI for organizations that invest in improving their psychological safety.

Connect with Greg:
Guarding Minds at Work link:

Employee engagement survey from Guarding Minds:
PHS awareness courses free for leaders and employees:

Being A mindful employee (Free workplace Mental health course for employees)

Every Reaction Makes Sense with Shelby Leigh

When we’re trauma informed, we learn how to care for and welcome people in our communities and people in our organizations. We acknowledge the impact we have on each other so we respond appropriately without causing additional harm. Safer spaces then help people to show up as authentically and fully as they can. This enables them to learn and grow more easily while feeling more supported and encouraged to participate in different environments. Some of the topics we discuss include the definition of being trauma informed, the window of tolerance, treating each other with compassion and ways we can feel connected.

We discuss:

  • The definition for being trauma informed and what it means for employees and organizations.
  • What the benefits and pitfalls are of a closed or open window of tolerance and how trauma makes us act in a more reactive way.
  • Trauma is an emotional wound that affects all of us in different ways, especially since living through a pandemic.
  • What it means for different people to feel connected to each other and be compassionate.
  • Real life examples where organizations tripled in size after setting up structures and safer spaces that allowed employees to feel heard and seen.

Connect with Shelby Leigh:

Brains Brought Into Business with Gerrit Pelzer

Not one brain is the same. Each brain forms certain habits and patterns in life that often persist through a whole lifetime and make each brain unique in how it interprets and experiences the world. As leaders it is important to recognise that your employees are all unique individuals. They won’t necessarily be motivated or stressed out by the same things as you and are affected by the eight basic emotions. By understanding that people perform differently when experiencing either survival or attachment emotions, we can support them accordingly so they feel safe and happy. We discuss topics such as survival vs attachment emotions, three essential aspects about the brain leaders need to understand and something Gerrit calls hard biology.

We discuss:

  • Three essential aspects about the brain that leaders need to know

  • Why leaders need to take into account that everyone’s brain works differently when it comes to motivating their team or helping employees cope with stress.

  • Emotions are the result of very complex neurochemical processes that can be called hard biology.

  • Eight basic emotions that can show up at work as either survival or attachment emotions and why they matter to leaders.

  • Our brains do not differentiate between physical threats and psychological ones and we are constantly assessing our environment to keep ourselves safe.

Connect with Gerrit Pelzer:

Breaking new ground with trauma-informed leadership with Michelle Baker

Trauma isn’t a jacket we take off when it’s time to go to work. It stays with us throughout the day and can impact our daily life at unexpected moments. It affects productivity, engagement, absenteeism, turnover and more. Trauma can affect anyone. Living through a pandemic together has raised awareness of mental health issues. We need to treat people with compassion and empathy instead of making assumptions about their feelings or behaviour because we don’t know their lived experiences. Today we talk about how we can achieve trauma-informed leadership and topics such as what trauma is and isn’t, how it can affect anyone, the training resources available to become trauma informed in the workplace and why you shouldn’t make assumptions.

We discuss:

  • How watching the news can lead to burnout and mental health problems.

  • What trauma is and what it isn’t and why we should be careful not to use the word too casually

  • The difference between empathetic and trauma informed leadership

  • How the frontlines of trauma have shifted

  • How hardships from someone’s home life show up at work because these traumas trickle through and impact day to day life.

Connect with: Michelle Baker
Fast company article mentioned: 

I hope you enjoyed this episode of Evolve: A New Era of Leadership.