Category Archives: Mental Health

Allowing the Becoming: Trans & Faithful

Allowing the Becoming: Trans & Faithful (feat. Laura Beth Buchleiter)



Welcome to Episode 69 of the #AskSteveAustin Podcast, with Steve Austin and Laura Beth Buchleiter. If you’re wondering what the journey of a trans person might be like, don’t miss this episode! Steve talks with Laura Beth about faith, sexuality, and her recent gender affirmation surgery.

Allowing the Becoming: Trans & Faithful

Show notes:


The Night Rev. Ed Bacon Nearly Died by Suicide

The Night Rev. Ed Bacon Nearly Died by Suicide



Episode 68 of the #AskSteveAustin Podcast is a BONUS Episode, featuring Steve Austin’s friend and spiritual mentor, Rev. Ed Bacon. This audio comes at a time when many of us are grieving the deaths of Kate Space and Anthony Bourdain. Rev. Bacon recently offered deep insights into the epidemic of despair, sharing his own personal story of the night he nearly died by suicide.

Ed Bacon is an Episcopal priest, speaker, and author of 8 Habits of Love. Now, after decades of leading churches, he travels from his Alabama home, teaching across all spiritual paths as well as in non-religious contexts how our Oneness in Love overcomes our separateness in fear. He also works to help save the Pando forest in southern Utah. You can follow Ed at edbacon.co and on Facebook and Twitter.

Articles mentioned:

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Holding Up the Light (part 2)

Holding up the Light, Part 2 (Judy Sutherland)



Episode 67 of the #AskSteveAustin Podcast is all about the 7 energy levels and stress reactions we all have. What’s yours? This is part two of Steve Austin’s talk with life coach, Judy Sutherland. Follow Judy’s work at judysutherland.com.

Show notes:

From the ELI Website:

A Mirror That Reflects Your World

The Energy Leadership Index (E.L.I.) is a one-of-a-kind assessment that enables leaders to hold up mirrors to their perceptions, attitudes, behaviors, and overall leadership capabilities. The E.L.I. forms the initial launching point for the Energy Leadership Development System, helping give you a baseline for your current performance and situation. Whether you proceed through the full system or not, the realizations that you’ll gain from the Energy Leadership assessment and debrief process alone will change the way you view your world.

Background: An Attitudinal Assessment

There are two main types of assessments: Personality and Attitudinal. Personality based assessments, such as Myers Briggs and D.I.S.C. are very valuable tools that pinpoint certain personality types so that people can have more of an understanding about what their strengths and weaknesses are. By understanding your personality and how it relates to what you do, you can adapt your behavior to “work with what you have,” to function effectively.

The E.L.I. is an attitudinal assessment, which is based on an energy/action model. This assessment differs from personality assessments as it is not intended to label a person and have them work well within that label. Instead, it measures your level of energy based on your attitude, or perception and perspective of your world. Because attitude is subjective, it can be altered. By working with a coach using the E.L.I., you can alter your attitude and perspective, make a shift in your consciousness, and increase your energy and leadership effectiveness.

There are no limits as to the potential growth that you can achieve. Once you realize that your level of consciousness is directly related to your actions, you can move from functioning effectively, to functioning optimally.

As part of the Energy Leadership Index assessment and debrief process, you’ll learn about the 7 levels of leadership and how much energy you currently have in the catabolic-suppressing range and in the anabolic-inspirational range. You’ll be debriefed on the findings of the assessment, and coached on how to navigate yourself to higher performance.

If you proceed on to the Energy Leadership Development System, you’ll be coached on how to become your ideal image of who you need to be as a leader for your situation, division, team, and/or company.

What is Energy Leadership?

Energy Leadership™ is the process that develops a personally effective style of leadership that positively influences and changes not only yourself, but also those with whom you work and interact, as well as your organization as a whole.

Before we explore the rest of what Energy Leadership may have to offer you, let’s define the two key underlined terms above.

Leadership

Leadership is how you interact with everyone, including yourself. Leaders are quite visible within small and large businesses. We tend to think of them as business owners, CEO’s and managers at all levels. Traditionally, leadership also extends into politics and other global affairs. However, parents, therapists and health care providers, solopreneurs, sports coaches, consultants, mentors, partners in relationship, teachers, authors, and others who interact with people on a regular basis are all leaders. EVERYONE is a leader either by choice or default.

If you don’t think of yourself as a leader, then you are limited in your thinking. Leading is the way we help move people into action, including us. The question is not whether or not we are leaders, but how well we lead.

Organization

Organizations are not limited to business. All of the groups, teams, and people around you are organizations too. It’s the colleagues you work with and the family you go home to. Your organization includes all those who are grouped within your many circles of influence. Each of us is a part of many organizations.

There are 2 Streams. Which One Do You Swim In?

A relentlessly damaging stream is flowing through America. This stream is not created by water, but by fear. It is the Stream of Unconsciousness.

Its constructive counterpart, the Stream of Consciousness, flows through only a few of the world’s homes and organizations and is fed by creative and positive thinking that produces questions like “What’s right,” “What’s the opportunity here,” and “How can we make this work?” In contrast, the Stream of Unconsciousness is based on only one question: “What’s wrong?” This stream is the one most of us have been trained to see, listen to, drink from, and bathe in since birth.

During any typical workday, most people spend a great deal of time focusing on what’s wrong — with their family, their jobs, their projects, their colleagues, their relationships, and their lives. At work, it’s not surprising that studies show that more than 50 percent of the people in our nation’s workforce would choose, if they could, to quit their jobs.

What will it take to shift the pressure and negativity that surrounds not only corporate America but our personal lives and the state of our communities? What will help employees to be productive, content, and have a positive view of both the organizations they work for and the people they work with? It will take a powerful leader who is skilled, highly sophisticated, and versatile, and one who understands the power of energy.

Catabolic and Anabolic Energy: The 2 Forces That Create Your World–Every Minute of Every Day

More than a hundred years ago, Albert Einstein addressed the scientific community, passionately presenting the idea that everything we see, hear, taste, touch, and smell is not matter, but energy. Everything that “matters” is energy.

On an energetic and cellular level, catabolism usually refers to a breakdown of complex molecules, while anabolism is the opposite. When you hear about a person’s catabolic or anabolic energy, however, it’s a broader statement about destructive and constructive forces in an entire person, who is made up not only of individual cells but also of anabolic and catabolic thoughts and beliefs.

Anabolic and Catabolic energy are predominant in organizations as well as people. Many organizations experience catabolic energy by constantly reacting to their circumstances with worry, fear, doubt, anger, and guilt. And thoughts are indeed contagious. When even a few people in an organization have negative feelings, it can spread like a virus. “Group think” sets in, and their thoughts become group “fact.” Once that occurs, the company can implode energetically in a swirl of gossip, negativity, conflict and contempt.

Remember that “group think” begins with “leader think”. At its core, an organization strongly reflects how its leader thinks, feels, and acts.

Anabolic leaders have the ability to motivate and inspire themselves and others to do extraordinary things. They have the ability to make energetic shifts in all levels of the organization. The most successful organizations are those that are filled with powerful, positive, anabolic leaders, and that means everyone in the organization, not just the “ones at the top.” No matter how effective or ineffective you currently are in your role, you can transform yourself and others, as well as your organization, into a thriving, inspired, positive, productive, and successful entity. And, thus begins your journey to become the Ideal Leader.

 


Ask Me Anything: AskSteveAustin.com

Mailbag Episode: Ask Me Anything!



Welcome to Episode 64 of the #AskSteveAustin Podcast with Steve Austin, sponsored by Audible. For a free 30-day trial and one free audiobook, go to audibletrial.com/asksteveaustin – This mailbag episode includes Steve’s responses to listener questions about: people pleasing, boundaries, speaking in tongues, anger, same sex attraction, atheism, and a whole lot more!

Last week, we reached a great big milestone25,000 downloads! Thanks to all of my wonderful guests, the messy grace tribe on facebook, and you the listener – this is a big deal! Thank you!

GIVEAWAY! For the next four weeks, I’m going to be giving away a paperback copy of my book, Self-Care for the Wounded Soul, plus a $25 Amazon gift card. All you have to do for your chance to win is leave a 5-star rating & review on iTunes. Take a screenshot of your review and email it to me at steve@iamsteveaustin.com – I’ll be giving away a copy of my book and an Amazon gift card every week for the next four weeks. Leave a review. Email it to me. It’s that simple. Good luck! And thanks for listening.

Ask Me Anything: AskSteveAustin.com

Show notes:

  • Have you followed my blog? This week on the blog, I shared a couple of new posts. One about the most depressing thing Jesus ever said, and another with 5 podcast episodes you don’t want to miss. Check those out, plus information on my life coaching and more at iamsteveaustin.com
  • My new book, Catching Your Breath: The Sacred Journey from Chaos to Calm, is due out in October! Want to stay up-to-date with all that’s happening with this new book? Join the launch team at catchingyourbreath.com! Subscribers get a free excerpt of the book, exclusive bonus content, and details on how to join the launch team.
  • Are you a member of the Messy Grace Tribe on Facebook? It’s an exclusive, closed Facebook group for supporters and guests of the AskSteveAustin podcast. If you’re looking for a way to continue this conversation every single day with other like-minded, grace-filled people, join the Messy Grace Tribe on Facebook! You can sign up for as little as $1 a month by going to patreon.com/iamsteveaustin. If you’re looking for a safe and diverse community of people who care about compassion, unity, and humanity – and aren’t obsessed with denomination, dogma, or doctrine, join The Messy Grace Tribe on Facebook! Sign up at patreon.com/iamsteveaustin

This week’s questions include:

  1. How do you find the strength to be the most authentic version of yourself, even if it’s bound to disappoint the people closest to you?
  2. How do you personally deal with the fact that just because Jesus can heal someone or fix a situation doesn’t mean he will? How does that affect your faith?
  3. How do you decide when to engage in a conversation or not?
  4. How can we have better conversations with the Evangelical/Fundamentalist brethren?
  5. How did Jesus not punch someone? Or, go absolutely bananas?
  6. What guidance can you give to a Christian who is experiencing unwanted same-sex attraction?
  7. Did you pray in tongues? If you did have the ‘gift of tongues’, do you now believe it was real? Is it something that like the Assemblies of God’s I’ve been to, you practiced? Is it a farce? What are your thoughts now?
  8. Do Jews, Christians, and Muslims all worship the same God?
  9. What is your opinion on atheism?
  10. If you imagine God as a living person, here, now, how do you imagine him/her?

Connect with Steve:


Good News: Life is Hard and Then You Die

Good News: Life is Hard, and Then You Die. (feat. Sarah Robinson)



This week on Episode 63 of the #AskSteveAustin Podcast, Steve Austin welcomes his dear friend and fellow writer, Sarah J. Robinson. In this episode, the two look at the real meaning of joy in the Bible. Don’t miss this conversation on the most depressing thing Jesus ever said. Music in Episode 63 by Jon Scott.

Good News: Life is Hard and Then You Die

Yesterday, a friend of mine sent me a message that read, “Life sucks.” And I responded, “Yep. It’s a promise from Jesus.” This episode is all about that. Well, kinda.

Many of us want to believe that Christianity is about the end of suffering, pain, and hard times. We want the successful Christian life to equal health, wealth, and happiness. But we forget that before Jesus ever resurrected, he was betrayed, mocked, beaten to a bloody pulp, nailed to a cross, and buried. This is a conversation about hard times. And hope. And cultivating joy in the midst of it all.

Show Notes:

Related Resources:


Jamie the Very Worst Missionary

The Very Worst Missionary (feat. Jamie Wright)



On Episode 61 of the #AskSteveAustin Podcast, Steve sits down with Jamie Wright, author of the new bestseller, The Very Worst Missionary: A Memoir or Whatever. *Warning: if you’re a prude, you may want to skip this episode (or it could be exactly what you need). Jamie is the perfect balance of faithful and foul – listen at your own risk

The Very Worst Missionary: A Memoir or Whatever

The Very Worst Missionary: A Memoir or Whatever, began as a blog, to chronical everyday dumbness, hilarious ineptitudes, and downright disasters of a wannabe world-changer who some days would rather just stay in bed. When to her surprise, her blog wins a large and passionate following (including Steve Austin), she begins to see that maybe a “bad” missionary – awkward, doubtful, and bare-butt honest – is exactly what the world and throngs of American do-gooders need.

This book will NOT take “a literary dump on your soul,” like Jamie says is possible. But it WILL, in parts, cause you to throw your head back and belly laugh. In the foreword of this book, here’s what Jen Hatmaker says, “…this broken down world and our busted-up human hearts deserve better than a list of rules and a church that emphasizes fitting in over true belonging.” (Be sure to listen to the entire episode for a chance to win 1 of 3 copies of this fantastic new book!)

Author Jamie Wright is a writer and speaker best known for her snarky faith and lifestyle blog, The Very Worst Missionary. As a passionate advocate for missions reform and humanitarian aid that is sensible, meaningful, and enduring, she has traveled the world sharing her experience with churches, nonprofits, and universities. She procrastinates in Northern California, where she lives with her family, two dumb dogs, and an evil cat. For more information please visit www.theveryworstmissionary.com

Show notes:

  • Support Steve’s Kickstarter for Catching Your Breath, at KickstartMyBook.com
  • Theological shifts
  • Book writing
  • Becoming The Very Worst Missionary
  • Steve’s short-term missions trips
  • The truth about missions agencies
  • Where you come from matters
  • “God will not be swallowed like a pill to cure the herpes of your soul…”
  • Jamie’s experience with mental illness
  • Remaining faithful while having doubts
  • How do we encourage honesty and vulnerability in our children?
  • What is it about the truth that makes people so uncomfortable?
  • For those of us post-Evangelical Christianity, what happened? Did the church change? Did we? Where do we go from here?
  • Jamie’s least-favorite Christianese phrases
  • Do you believe the Church of Jesus Christ is the Hope of the World?
  • How should we respond to people who disagree with us theologically?
  • Why are you still such a passionate follower of Jesus, even though you’re obviously a terrible missionary?
  • usic
    • “Gettin’ Our Church On,” by the Drew Hale Band.
    • “Not Crazy,” by Act of Congress ActOfCongressMusic.com

Follow Jamie Wright on Twitter and Facebook. Get the book here.

Follow Steve Austin on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and his blog.

Support Steve’s Kickstarter for his upcoming book, Catching Your Breath: The Sacred Journey from Chaos to Calm, by going to KickstartMyBook.com today!

Listen to the #AskSteveAustin Podcast on Spotify


looking for god in the darkness

Looking for God in the Darkness



Content Warning: In this episode, we talk about suicide, self-harm, and abortion.

Welcome to Episode 58, a special Good Friday episode of The #AskSteveAustin Podcast. If you’re in a hard time, experiencing a dark night of the soul, wondering where on earth God has gone, you are welcome here.

looking for god in the darkness

This episode originally aired on CXMH Podcast for Good Friday 2017, as a way for friends of the show to stand with us in the tension between crucifixion and resurrection, acknowledging that there are parts of our stories that still haven’t been healed. The truth is, at some point, we’ve all found ourselves looking for God in the darkness.

Show Notes:

Let The Darkness Shape You by L.J. Vanier (read by Steve Austin)
We Don’t Talk About This On Good Friday by Sarah Simmons
Trusting Through the Suck by Steve Austin
Pierced By a Song by Rev. Liz Edman
When Jesus Comes Into Our Great Sadness by William Paul Young
The Work of the People by Stephanie Gates
Stigma by Dan from Canada
A Litany for Survival by Audre Lorde (read by Grace Sandra)
Take and Eat by J.J. Landis
Finding God in the Tension by Robert Vore

Music used:


Sarah Simmons is a writer, learner and creative mess. She’s been an accidental youth pastor, and helped run a mentoring program for church leaders. She’s in love with redemption, pancakes and fish tacos. (Website) (Twitter)

Abuse, addiction, and a suicide attempt weren’t the end of Steve Austin’s story. Steve is host of the #AskSteveAustin Podcast, an author, speaker, and life coach.. (Website) (Twitter)

Liz Edman is an Episcopal priest, a political strategist, and the author of Queer Virtue: What LGBTQ People Know About Life and Love and How It Can Revitalize Christianity. This year, she created and co-organized Glitter+Ash Wednesday, a project to increase the visibility of progressive, queer-positive Christians. She lives in New York City with her two awesome sons.   (Website) (Facebook) (Twitter)

Paul Young is author of The Shack, Crossroads, Eve, and Lies We Believe about God. (Website) (Twitter)

Stephanie Gates writes, edits, and raises a bunch of kids in Denver, Colorado. (Website)

Grace Sandra is a social & racial justice advocate, wife, mama and a writer of blogs & books. (Website) (Twitter)

JJ Landis is the author of Some Things You Keep: Letting go. Holding on. Growing up., a memoir about growing up after the suicide of her mother. She writes about parenting, marriage, and getting through the day. (Website) (Twitter)

Robert Vore is a writer, speaker, and Suicide Prevention instructor. (Website) (Facebook) (Twitter)

 


Banish Your Inner Critic

How to Banish Your Inner Critic (with Denise Jacobs)



WELCOME to Episode 57 of the #AskSteveAustin Podcast, with Steve Austin and Denise Jacobs, author of Banish Your Inner Critic. This show is sponsored by Audible.com – sign up for your free month’s membership at audibletrial.com/asksteveaustin!

Banish Your Inner Critic

Show Notes:

 

Tweetable Moments:

  • The selfishness that leads to self-lessness is called self-full-ness.
  • Changing the brain is driven by where we place our focus.
  • The closer we get to achieving grandeur, the louder the inner-critic becomes.
  • Staying curious is one powerful way to learn from criticism.
  • You have the power to change.

Denise Jacobs is an author, Keynote Speaker, plus Founder and Chief Creativity Evangelist at TheCreativeDose.com – Denise has written a wonderful new book, Banish Your Inner Critic: Silence the Voice of Self-Doubt to Unleash Your Creativity and Do Your Best Work.


Namaste' Project

The Namaste Project & Spiritual Self-Care (with Dr. Holly Oxhandler)



Welcome to Episode 55 of #AskSteveAustin Podcast, with Steve Austin and Dr. Holly Oxhandler. The show is sponsored by Audible.com – sign up for your free month’s membership at audibletrial.com/asksteveaustin!

Namaste' Project
Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/60973041@N05/15626381302/

Housekeeping:

  1. Hot off the presses! I’m in the news. Go to Deseret News.com today and read her story on the epidemic of despair that is plaguing our country.
  2. I’m launching a Kickstarter campaign in the next few weeks, so save your pennies! If you believe in what I’m doing and you’d like to sponsor this new book, Catching Your Breath, please keep your eyes peeled for the launch of my Kickstarter.
  3. Follow the blog at iamsteveaustin.com for practical self-help tips and self-care advice from my perspective as a life coach and former pastor. (Also – sign up for my newsletter and get a free excerpt from my upcoming book, Catching Your Breath.)
  4. Are you interested in life coaching? I offer free consultations to anyone who’s ready to take their life, business, or relationship to the next level. Get all the details at iamsteveaustin.com and clicking on the coaching link.
  5. The #AskSteveAustin podcast is sponsored by Audible.com, and if you’re an Audible customer, my Amazon best-selling memoir, From Pastor to a Psych Ward, is now available! Want to listen to my book for free? Go to audibletrial.com/asksteveaustin
  6. Are you a member of the Messy Grace Tribe on Facebook? It’s an exclusive, closed Facebook group for supporters and guests of the AskSteveAustin podcast. If you’re looking for a way to continue this conversation every single day with other like-minded, grace-filled people, join the Messy Grace Tribe on Facebook! You can sign up for as little as $1 a month by going to patreon.com/iamsteveaustin.
  7. Music this episode by Act of Congress, and “Angel Band” by The Stanley Brothers.

The Namaste’ Project and Spiritual Self-Care – Questions:

  1. Could it be dangerous to have these conversations? Are there situations where this kind of talk could be harmful?
  2. What kind of impact could it have if helping professionals like LCSW’s started focusing on the whole person?
  3. How do you think holding sacred space for clients could impact their progress, recovery, or just everyday lives?
  4. What does the word Namaste’ mean, and what is this new project?
  5. What if you are a social worker who claims no faith or your religion is completely different from your client’s? How would that impact the client’s care?

Dr. Holly Oxhandler is the Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development and an Assistant Professor at Baylor University’s Diana R. Garland School of Social Work. Holly studies religion/spirituality, health and mental health, and is especially interested in whether and how mental and behavioral health therapists discuss their client’s religious/spiritual beliefs in treatment. She developed and validated the Religious/Spiritually Integrated Practice Assessment Scale, has written for numerous academic journals, and her research has been featured in the Washington Post, Consumer Affairs, Religion News Service, Baptist News Global, and more.

Holly lives in Waco, TX with her husband, Cory, and the couple has two children: Callie (2012) and Oliver (2016). She loves to read, paint, meditate, learn about others’ stories over a cup of coffee, and most of all, spend time with her loved ones. You can follow Holly online at HollyOxhandler.com  and on Twitter @HollyOxhandler


AskSteveAustin Podcast

Mailbag Episode: Ask Me Anything! (with Steve Austin)



Welcome back to the #AskSteveAustin Podcast, episode 54, sponsored by Audible. This mailbag episode includes Steve Austin’s responses to listener questions about: faith, abuse, boundaries, stillness, and more!

Show notes:

  • For a free 30-day trial and one free audiobook? Just go to audibletrial.com/asksteveaustin
  • Follow blog at iamsteveaustin.com
  • My new book, Catching Your Breath: The Sacred Journey from Chaos to Calm, is due out in September! Want to stay up-to-date with all that’s happening with this new book? Sign up at catchingyourbreath.com! Subscribers get a free excerpt of the book, exclusive bonus content, earlybird discounts, and details on how to join the launch team.
  • Leave a 5-star rating and review on iTunes for a shoutout on the podcast!
  • Music by Act of Congress
  • Are you a member of the Messy Grace Tribe on Facebook?  You can sign up for as little as $1 a month by going to patreon.com/iamsteveaustin. If you’re looking for a safe and diverse community of people who care about compassion, unity, and humanity – and aren’t obsessed with denomination, dogma, or doctrine, join The Messy Grace Tribe! Sign up at patreon.com/iamsteveaustin

This week’s questions:

  • When you know you’re called to speak out against toxic theology (or other toxic systems), what do you do to keep yourself from getting poisoned in the process? Speaking out against it also means being exposed to it, which can make me feel sick sometimes because it’s so toxic.
  • What does the word faith mean to you?
  • Did your relationship with God and your faith change radically after you dealt with the abuse that happened to you?
  • In your opinion, how does Jesus move through the Sacraments?
  • When you’re overwhelmed, how do you practice stillness without becoming more overwhelmed by all the things you’re not doing while practicing stillness?
  • How do you slow down without stopping?
  • I no longer trust my therapist. Can I just leave her?
  • What are some boundaries you recommend all people put in place?
  • How do you set boundaries with people who don’t respect your boundaries?
  • What is your perspective on 1 Corinthians 2:11?
  • What’s the reason you do all that you do – podcasts, blogs, books, speaking, life coaching, etc.?

Tweetable moments:

  • You’ll make more progress by telling people what you’re for, rather than what you’re against. The world is tired of divisiveness and negativity.
  • Faith is trust in what we cannot see. Faith is a gritty hope that better days are coming. It’s the embrace of Mystery. It’s a belief that there is some power greater than we can possibly comprehend that is ultimately working for our good.
  • Abuse impacts us at the level of our trust, but Jesus was abused too.
  • Boundaries remind me that I still belong. They’re a marker.
  • The Spirit of God in me recognizes the Spirit of God in you.