PODCAST ARCHIVES!

"How It All Works" with Paul Nylander (GWTW545)

Where does your curiosity lead you? For today’s guest, Paul Nylander, his curious nature has taken him from the world of high-energy physics to book design as he searches to understand how everything works. Paul is a book designer, engaging storyteller, and owner of Illustrada, a studio that collaborates with small presses and independent authors to get their ideas into the world. In our conversation, he shares his curious journey from physics to design. He also explores where his love for books comes from, the art and science of change, the nature of generalists and specialists, and the role of questions and trust in his design process.

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Curiosity Builders, Pt. 2 (GWTW544)

It’s been almost three years since I started talking about Curiosity Builders. In my mind, I knew what I wanted to do: teach and share about the virtues of curiosity. I wrote courses, filmed videos, and started sharing with others. Then something happened. I got stuck in my head. Overthinking ensued and fear took over. And the vision, passion, and action drifted away into the recesses of my brain. But over the past year, the idea for Curiosity Builders shifted as I changed through various experiences. In today’s episode of Getting Work To Work, I’m going to share about what it has become and how you can be part of it.

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"Notes & Chords" with Randy George (GWTW543)

What is the DNA of who you are and what you do? For today’s guest, the answer is in the notes and chords that make up the foundation of his music. Randy George is a bass player and multi-instrumentalist, most known for his work with Neal Morse. In this conversation, he shares the importance of trial and error, and the role influences play in discovering new sounds. He talks about the value of listening and hearing where the music wants to go, being flexible in the collaborative process, and how risk, doubt, and learning from failure are critical no matter where you are in your career. We also dive into his fascination with film and TV production.

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Things I'm Thinking About (GWTW542)

In the middle of a busy week, my body decided I needed to rest. I don’t like to stop, I want to stay active and productive, but I couldn’t argue with the cold that kindly greeted me early Thursday morning. For four days, I slept, read books, and watched movies. I couldn’t believe all the fascinating things I started thinking about: the role of influences in creativity, why being a giver matters, love, boldness, risk, relentless optimism, The Beach Boys, and of course, Ted Lasso. May you find encouragement and inspiration in today’s monologue.

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"Crisis and Growth Leadership" with Dr. Rob Fazio (GWTW541)

How will you respond to the next crisis you will face? Dr. Rob Fazio is a Leadership Psychologist and Crisis Consultant who shares several ways to respond to the current crisis we are facing and the one just around the corner with growth leadership. In this conversation, Rob talks about his curiosity around how people change their minds, applying sport psychology in the world of business, and understanding what drives our motivations. He also gives several ways to work through burnout beyond self-care, why we need simple strategies for success, and how conversations are the most critical tool in business.

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Infinite Loops of Overthinking (GWTW540)

I’m a chronic overthinker. I like to tell myself that it’s a new feature of my life thanks to the uncertainty of the times. But if I’m honest with myself and everyone listening right now, I’ve been this way for as long as I can remember. When I overthink, my ability to take action on tasks and projects dwindles until I worry about everything. Decision-making becomes daunting and fraught with over-analysis. Perfectionism and fear hide around every corner until I lose momentum. Then, a miracle occurs! I get a beautiful fresh idea, and suddenly I’m back in business. The old melt away in favor of the new, that is, until I begin overthinking, yet again.

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"Make Your Heart Smile" with Michelle Boulé (GWTW539)

What is making your heart smile? What desires are you listening to deep within yourself? How are you aligning who you need to become with what you want to bring to life? These are three questions inspired by today’s conversation with Michelle Boulé, a professional dancer and life coach. In our time together, Michelle shares her journey of growth and helping others see the possibilities within and around themselves. She talks about how injury allowed her to find new directions for her life, the role of alignment and energy in growth, and why she loves to explore the edge of creativity. If you are struggling to discover a way forward or lacking the belief that you too can grow, I hope you find encouragement and empowerment to change in Michelle’s words.

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Not For Immediate Use (GWTW538)

How much of your life do you spend trying to redeem every ounce of value in everything you consume? When you think of growth, what is the first thought that enters your mind? The answer to both of these questions is related. Growth is the result of not wasting any time and making sure that everything is valuable. While this sounds great and all, not everything is meant to be helpful today. Some things are not for immediate use. And that’s what this episode is all about. As I unblock myself from a cycle of overthinking, I let the culmination of a 20-year story resolve in my mind. The tension melts away, and I recognize an underlying thought: If I only ever live for the moment in the shallow end of life, there will be nothing to reflect upon tomorrow as I wade into deeper waters.

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"The Art of Slacking Off" with Michael Arnold (GWTW537)

What instantly enters your mind when you hear the phrase “slacking off”? How about “slacking off for fun and profit”? If you’re anything like myself and many others, guilt, shame, laziness are right there, not to mention bonbons. Michael Arnold, the author of Slacking Off: A Successful Way to Work From Home, is today’s guest on Getting Work To Work and he wants you to know that slacking off is a good thing for us. Not only does it boost our creativity, but it also increases our productivity. In this conversation, we talk about his entrepreneurial journey and relationship with working and slacking off, the importance of learning from failures, not just successes, why self-love matters, and the best gift he gives his readers: more time.

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Your Story Matters (GWTW536)

Did you know that your story matters and is worthy of sharing with others? If the first thing that enters your mind is doubt, represented by the insecure thought, “Even my story, Chris? You don’t know!” The answer is yes, even your story. We live in a world that elevates a relatively small number of people when there is an abundance of beauty found in other’s stories around the world. If there is a core value that fuels this show and a fundamental belief that gives my life meaning, it’s the truth that every story matters. In this episode of Getting Work To Work, I explore seven reasons people think their stories don’t matter and how to see the truth.

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"Be True! Be You!" with Ashwin Chacko (GWTW535)

How do you show up in your work? Do you create work that is true to who you are and what matters to you? These are two questions I’ve been reflecting on since talking with Ashwin Chacko, a seriously playful illustrator and storyteller based in Dublin, Ireland. Our conversation begins with Ashwin’s curiosity about the social interactions that drive culture and the role artists play in our world. He then shares stories of his early years as a child of missionaries, learning critical adaptability skills and gaining new friends wherever he goes. We talk a lot about making sense of chaos, overcoming fear by telling it no, finding his purpose and calling, and why it’s essential to separate yourself from your work. He also teaches us the 4Ds of unlocking any creative blocks you might be facing.

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Getting Life to Work (GWTW534)

I’ve always been fascinated by work, leadership, and entrepreneurship. In many ways, I’ve become obsessed with my work, always working, even when resting. But lately, my eyes have been opening to the reality and necessity of self-care so I can live a more functional, beautiful, and glorious life. Your work ultimately won’t work if your body, mind, and spirit don’t work. And I learned this lesson most recently from a series of books. I know not surprising, but the book that had the most significant impact on my well-being might surprise you.

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"Doing Good in the World" with De & John Ingles (GWTW533)

What good can you do in the world? A powerful question guiding the life and work of today’s guests, De & John Ingles, the husband-wife team behind Smiley Graphix Studio and Wild Routed. Our conversation begins with the early days of playing outside and spending all day in adventure. From there, we join their entrepreneurial journey starting Smiley Graphix in 1997, losing a job of 31 years in 2019, going on a five-week road trip, and then creating a retail side project. Story after story, they talk about the memories and the people who have made a difference in their lives. By being open to what life has for them and sharing it with others, De & John have created a life worth living. Enjoy the conversation.

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What Goes Into An Hour? (GWTW532)

If there is a common thread of questioning that weaves all creative professionals and entrepreneurs together, it’s pricing our work and offerings. At various stages of your entrepreneurial journey, you’ve probably asked all of these questions: How much should I charge? How should I price my work? How often should I change my prices? Essentially, what we really want to know is what is the right way to do it, so that we make money, avoid the plight of feast or famine, and be able to keep doing what we want to be doing. But did you ever stop to think about what actually goes into an hour of your time? I was surprised when I revealed a hidden habit of how I decided to charge for my hour.

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"Harness Your Creative Energy" with Dylan Menges (GWTW531)

My curiosity for today’s guest began when I saw his simple M-shaped lightning bolt logo. From there, I read his story, engaged with his work, and quickly knew that I needed to talk with him. Dylan Menges of Menges Design is all about idea-driven, handcrafted design. With a passion and extensive experience in lettering, Dylan brings to his client work a desire for boldness and the courage to be seen and heard. Our conversation begins at the deep end of life, discussing eternity and the long-term impact of our work. But we don’t stop there, as we talk a lot about setting and managing expectations, the need for experimentation and taking risks, and moving forward into the unknown future.

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Business Tunnel Vision (GWTW530)

When it comes to your business, do you have tunnel vision? Tunnel vision keeps you focused on the work directly in front of you, passively waiting for people to choose you. It tells you to share content consistently with the hope that what you have to say will resonate with someone, anyone. Most importantly, it keeps you trapped alone in the dark, surrounded by imaginary monsters. Inspired by something I read recently in Solo: How to Work Alone (and Not Lose Your Mind) by Rebecca Seal, I’m going to talk about business tunnel vision and share seven ways to escape it.

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Shoulds, Needs, and Wants (GWTW529)

You never know how much you have grown until you are in a situation where you see clearly who you once were and who you have become. For years, I wanted people to tell me who I should be. Then somewhere along my journey, I shifted to doing anything I could do to get what I needed. But to my recent surprise, I discovered that I have been focusing on what I actually want, and in the process, found clarity, peace, and an opportunity to help more people. Where are you on your creative journey? Are you living in the land of shoulds, needs, or wants?

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Learn Your Own Way (GWTW528)

Comparison, jealousy, envy, impostor syndrome, fear of missing out, feeling like I don’t measure up—nothing triggers these feelings more than learning. From online courses to in-person experiences, along with multiple mediums of engagement, there are unlimited opportunities to learn daily. It always seems like everyone else is learning all the things, and I’m learning hardly anything. But I realized that the more important reality is not how much you are learning but how you best learn and tailor your experiences accordingly. In simpler terms: quality, not quantity.

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Crutches For Your Creativity (GWTW527)

I love those moments when you hear something so straightforward that it reveals something hidden in your brain. I recently shared feedback with a friend, and her response was swift: “Yep, I know that about myself, it’s a crutch.” I couldn’t get that phrase out of my head. I know what crutches are used for when we hurt our bodies, but what are they used for when it comes to our creativity? Are they good, bad, or even odd? These are the questions that I’m exploring, yes, in today’s monologue, but honestly, in my life. Because once you start revealing crutches in your life and work, you won’t stop seeing them. Then it becomes a question of, “What do you do with them?”

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Curating Your Body of Work (GWTW526)

One of the constant forces of living a creative life is balancing the tension between creation and curation. Often, people explain those two acts of creativity as separate tasks: creators create and curators curate. Occasionally, they overlap, but they are usually separated. I don’t deny these two worlds. I think as creators we are in a constant state of both functions. We consume and curate the inspirational work that fuels our work. We create in the hopes that others will curate what we have done. But what happens as we amass a body of work throughout our lifetimes? How do we unearth the gold from the past so that people can benefit from it today? The answer is through the power of curation.

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"Exploring the Great Unknown" with Alicja Colon (GWTW525)

What do you do when you feel lost on your creative journey? You do what today’s guest does: continue exploring the great unknown. Alicja Colon is a paper illustrator, tactile artist, and entrepreneur. She is the first person who comes to mind when I think of an artist constantly reinventing who they are and sharing the struggles and successes along the way. In this conversation, Alicja uses her brave voice of transparency and authenticity to talk about the sustainability of art and business. She talks candidly about burnout and how the freelance life affects not just herself but those around her. We then soar into the silver clouds of exploration, talking about visual analogies, curiosity, passion, and the power of personal declarations.

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The Lies of Professional Jealousy (GWTW524)

The past few weeks, I’ve been feeling stuck, left out, on the bench, not playing the game at my usual level of proficiency. The feelings were so intense, complex, and thick that I didn’t know where to start unpacking them. As I shared them with my business coach, she said a phrase that reverberated deep within me: “This sounds a lot like professional jealousy. I can so relate to this.” In this episode, I will tell a few stories of how professional jealousy has shaped my career. I’m going to talk about comparing yourself to others and how comparison is the root of professional jealousy. I’ll also share five ways to recognize and work through any jealousy you might be experiencing.

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"Creatives Ignite" with Diane Gibbs (GWTW523)

Who are the people in your life who have made a noticeable impact on you? Near the top of my list is today’s guest on Getting Work To Work, Diane Gibbs, a designer, graphic design educator, Host of The Design Recharge Show, and visionary behind Creatives Ignite, an online summer camp for creative entrepreneurs. If that’s not enough, she is also a dealer of hope. Her mission is to connect creatives, so no one ever feels alone. In this conversation, she shares her entrepreneurial journey from selling bookmarks at a young age to starting an online summer camp in 2020. We talk a lot about serving others, giving feedback as a way to show you care, the impact of accountability, and the value of being accessible. Oh, and she provides all the details about Creatives Ignite.

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Your Older Creative Life (GWTW522)

I was surprised when a theme popped up over the past few days. It’s centered around this question: What do you want your creative life to look like on your next milestone birthday? For me, that’s 50. It boggles my mind that I am closer to 50 than 30, let alone 20, but that’s just life. On the difficulty scale of questions to ask, this one is off the charts. I live life drifting between the present and some moment in the past. While I want to blame this behavior on the Internet, algorithms, and a culture that worships the youth and everything new, I don’t want to deal with reality. But I have to, just like we all do. And it starts with preparing for my creative future.

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"Polka Dot Downtown" with Bill Will & Theresa Vetsch-Sandoval (GWTW521)

How do you use a public art installation during a pandemic to promote safe gatherings in a public space? To answer that question are two people behind Polka Dot Downtown, a performance art installation in and around Portland, Oregon, including Pioneer Courthouse Square. Bill Will is a conceptual sculptor and installation artist. Theresa Vetsch-Sandoval is the Director of Marketing for Pioneer Courthouse Square, Portland’s Living Room. In this conversation, they share how this unique project came to life, what it takes to design art for massive spaces, and the impact Polka Dot Downtown has had on the community. Sprinkled throughout, Bill and Theresa talk a lot about public art and how artists can develop their reputations and share their creativity with others.

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When is an Idea Ready? (GWTW520)

Lately, I’ve been asking myself and others this question, “When is an idea ready?” I’m curious about what it takes for others to act because ready is a commitment. It’s a decision to go from an abstract thought that plays out only in your head to something becoming realized through planning, acting, creating, editing, refining, publishing, shipping, and sharing. For myself, I’m not entirely sure when an idea is ready to go. I think it’s a mix of “can’t stop thinking about it” and “if I don’t do something now, I won’t do anything at all.” In other words, I amplify an internal sense of creative tension that I must resolve. For others, it’s a deadline, a belief, a desire, an obligation, even a calling.

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"Born To Do It" with Dr. Rebekah Louisa Smith (GWTW519)

What were you born to do? A powerful question that can be overwhelming to consider, let alone answer. Dr. Rebekah Louisa Smith, the founder of The Film Festival Doctor, is here to discuss her soul purpose: to help filmmakers get their films seen in the right festivals and win awards. In this conversation, we also talk about her book, Born To Do It: Becoming the Leader of a Business Niche Using Powerful Spiritual Techniques and several concepts from the book, including branding and energy, positioning, identifying business opportunities, and networking. Throughout the conversation, Rebekah reflects the importance of being open to the unexpected and to others.

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What I'm Learning About Business (GWTW518)

I’m fifteen years into my business journey, and there is so much I still do not know. It seems like every day there is something new to learn. Not only about my business and the people I serve, but about myself. How I am wired; the future I want to create. The past I can’t seem to shake. In today’s episode of Getting Work To Work, I’m going to dive into a few lessons that I’m learning about business. It’s all about solidifying and creating a future that not only works for me but inspires other business owners to dig deep and go further than they thought possible. Business isn’t easy, so why make it harder on yourself than it already is?

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"A Little Piece of Your Soul" with Lian Dolan (GWTW517)

There is something special about moments in life where the worlds of fiction and reality align. Earlier this year, a good friend recommended “The Sweeney Sisters” by Lian Dolan. It’s a book about families and the impact of secrets, and as you’ll learn in this conversation, something I’ve been working through the past year. Not only is Lian a writer and speaker, but along with her four sisters, she co-hosts a top-rated podcast for women called Satellite Sisters. In this conversation, we begin with her early days of coming to the dinner table with a story to tell her nine family members and end by discussing the healing nature of fiction and how writing mirrors her reality. Throughout, Lian shares stories and wisdom for any creative to apply to their life, work, and craft.

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Trusting Yourself (GWTW516)

What does it mean to trust yourself? Inspired by a quote from Seth Godin’s book, The Practice: Shipping Creative Work, I’m exploring what it means to trust yourself and how trust connects to your passion. For most of my business, I found it easier to trust someone else’s interpretation of me rather than trust my thoughts, desires, and feelings. But as I consider what it means to trust myself and do the work connected to that trust, I see an interesting new path forward. To outsiders, it looks a lot like where I’ve been before. But to me, it feels so much different.

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"The Possibilities in Strengths" with Micah Lorenc (GWTW515)

Do you know what your strengths are? More importantly, do you know why that even matters? Today, I’m talking with Micah Lorenc, a Gallup-Certified Clifton Strengths Coach, about all-things strengths. From his curiosity about people and a fascination with understanding what makes us unique, Micah shares his journey to understand not just what we do but who we are. Throughout this conversation, we explore our strengths and connect them to our work. Micah talks about the common misconceptions between strengths and weaknesses as well as fixed and growth mindset. In addition, he also shares how both teams and relationships would benefit from understanding the dynamics between one another’s strengths.

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Lost in Hypothetical Scenarios (GWTW514)

How much time do you spend thinking about hypothetical scenarios, and how will you respond to them? If you’re anything like me, more time than you’d like to admit. After all, you’re proactive and responsible, but there is a fine line between planning and procrastinating. I recently realized that the more time I spend planning for problems that may or may not exist, the less time I spend producing work, improving my craft, and connecting with others. In today’s episode of Getting Work To Work, I’m going to explore several theoretical problems, why they are distractions, and how to keep moving forward.

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