Building Your Business Around Your Family

In this episode of the Driven Female Entrepreneurs Podcast, I speak with Parenting Coach and Couples Counsellor, Malva Gasowski, about her business journey and how she helps parents create a thriving home environment for their family, while also keeping their work and private life in balance.

Listen to this episode to discover how you too can get more balance between your business, your family and your wellbeing.

You can be whatever you want in life - but that doesn't mean you have to be everything at the same time. - Malva Gasowski

 

 
 
 
 
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Building Your Business Around Your Family
Driven Female Entrepreneurs Podcast
46:50
 

SUMMARY KEYWORDS

people, child, life, learn, book, parenting, wear, badge, perspective, makeup, grow, understand, moment, person, situation, buy, realize, bucket, fine, listen

SPEAKERS

Malva Gasowski, Vera Lee

 

Vera Lee 

My guest today is going to talk about all sorts of different things. She'll talk a lot about shoulds. Her seven buckets, Abell pleasing, and how often we do that to avoid judgment from others with their scathing opinions, and how wearing certain badges of honor can sometimes be a limiting factors in allowing us to move through the adversity, and growing ourselves through that process. We're going to talk a lot today about changing culture, which is especially warranted when you step into the perspective of a child. As Malva explained, she can be a delicate and happy woman, as well as an assertive person all rolled into one. And that putting up boundaries is one of the most important things to help yourself be okay, with your own way of life. We discuss how important it is to feel a strength to ask ours to think about the words they use, and the impact of their judgement on other people, particularly when it's directed to someone else's child. Malva and I got talking right from the start of this podcast, to the point where I didn't even get to ask my opening question until the end of the interview. It's a topsy turvy discussions on so many great topics, and well worth the wait for you to hear Malva's answer to that opening question, which then puts a lot of the prior interview into perspective. It also explains as to why Malva is so passionate and good at what she does. Have you ever had one of those gut wrenching moments where the live ground you to your knees and you found yourself asking in despair? Why me? This podcast is all about sharing your stories and journeys, from asking why me to declaring this. This is why me discover how ordinary human beings like you and I have found their extraordinary levels of hope, courage, compassion, and provided a new perspective for greater potential and self empowerment during the darkest defining moment. As a creative artist, and coach myself, my guests, and I discussed the interconnectedness of emotion and transformation in those moments, and how their actions and then seize the opportunity for discovering the unfiltered and authentic voice and ultimately, their life's purpose. I invite you to join me each week as we share insights into how adversity can be turned into a unique advantage.

 

Vera Lee 

So I'd love to know what is one book that has impacted you the most.

 

Malva Gasowski 

I read books daily. But the one book that I believe has impacted not only me personally, but the way that I work. And the way that I live, the way that I have my family structured was a book that I got from my boss at the time, and he was a very nervous person. So he was looking for spiritual way of actually calming himself down. And I already have my own, let's say spiritual spirituality set. So I didn't need to look into the new venues or new areas of that topic, but he's like, read it, read it, you really ought to read it. So I took it and I read it. And I read it with a grain of salt because again, I had a situation where my spiritual life was already set. So I did not need to search for something. But I still felt this book actually tried and opened up my mind. So the book's title is The Power of Kabbalah. I don't remember who the author is because it was more than 26 years ago when I read it, but I still remember the one message that I got from it. And one of the messages that I got from it that actually has affected my life till this day is you need to have seven buckets in your life. And every bucket that you have in your life has holes either bigger or smaller depending on what has happened in your life. So it is your relationship with your partner. Another bucket is your children. Another bucket is your well being so your health. Another bucket is your passion. And another bucket may be for example, your education. And you have to make sure that you concentrate your life on actually refilling those buckets because they drain because of the holes. And if you concentrate on only devoting all of your time and your energy on one bye. Let's say only your career, or only you're madly in love with someone as a teenager, and you only want to spend time with that one person. So here, you're nurturing your relationship bucket, then God forbid something happens with either your career, let's say, in this case, you lose a job or the company goes bankrupt, or you get fired, or whatever the case is, something is not working. Because you put all your energy into refilling that one career bucket, that is when you realize you have nothing else to fall back on. You don't know what to do with your life, you do not know where to start. And it seems like the end of the world. However, if you actually concentrate on all of the seven buckets, making sure that you have a good relationship with your loved one, you have a good relationship with your friends, you have amazing relationship with your children, you have a satisfactory career, you know how to take care of your health, and you have a fashion that you tap into once in a while. And then if, for example, you lose your job, you're like, Alright, that's okay. I have my family and friends to turn to, I have my fashion and I am I my passion, and I still have my health, I've got my children who will always love me, it's time to brush off the dust and find a new job. So that is the difference in the mindset of the approach, meaning you either concentrate on one thing, and if you lose it, you are going to be in therapy, you're going to be depressed, or you're going to be very, let's say anxious about the future, that is up ahead. But if you actually have a balanced the life, a life full of many things that you are doing, that is when you realize it's fine. If something doesn't work, there are other avenues I should travel. So that book actually made me rethink who I want to be what I want to do. And it actually made me everyday, it makes me rethink, am I doing this? To fill which bucket? And am I making sure that all of my buckets are not filled, filled to the brim, but at least halfway filled. So I know that I can be everything I want to be but I don't have to be everything at the same time.

 

Vera Lee 

Wow, I love that and just listening to you talk about those buckets. I I keep thinking back to how people often hold their identity in one other person or a title that they hold in their career is a very similar concept. And particularly people who put everything into that one person, like you said, and if that relationship breaks down, they don't just feel like they haven't got anything else to go to they also feel like they've lost their personal identity. And I love that analogy. Well, I will look up the author of that book. And we'll put that in the description link. I think that sounds like a fabulous read.

 

Malva Gasowski 

It is it is again, like I said, if you're not looking for anything spiritual, try to read this book from a perspective of self development as opposed to spirituality. It helped me and I still remember the title of the book, and I'm horrible with title titles. And it is something that after 26 years, I am still making sure that I implemented every day in my life. So from my perspective, it really did change my life. That's fantastic. Thank you so much for sharing that.

 

Vera Lee 

Now, the other question I had was who has been the most influential person in your life?

 

Malva Gasowski 

That is a tough one again, because I live what I preach so I do have very many avenues. I wear very many hats. I try to find a person that is my coach, my mentor, someone that I turn to depending on the avenue that I am doing because I believe that you need to grow and you need to learn from people who are more experienced than you are smarter than you because they just had the possibility to zone into that one avenue that you are interested in. So for example, a lot of my business advice I get from my husband who is an amazing CEO of two big companies and being smarter than I am that avenue. I'm like okay, baby, what do you think about this? And that is what's happening ask for parenting advice. There are people who have been studying and being doctors at your parenting like Dr. Shefali, these are the people that I turn to or Adele Faber For example, She has amazing books, so on children as well, I turned to them. Yes, I don't know them personally, but they have changed my life as well. Because if there were things that I didn't understand, even being a parenting expert, I still have to learn. There are things I didn't understand or something was bothering me because the answers that I had were not enough. They were good but they were not good enough. I wanted to learn more. So I read all these books and then I realize, okay, maybe just maybe if I try this or try that, then it will work. And for example with my writing, because I've written two books, and they're both become international bestsellers, which was an amazing surprise for me. So Wendy H Jones, who is an amazing author as well was my mentor in this case, and I say it left, right, left, right and center that She's the reason why this book, or these books are so amazing, because I said, Wendy, am I good enough? And she said, okay, tweak this, do that, and it will be great. And that is why I can say, she is my mentor. In this case, there's another lady that just recently become became my go to person when it comes to masterminds, business masterminds and actually bouncing off amazing ideas off of her so Vinee Ajmira she, she's an amazing businesswoman, and amazing business coach that actually allows me myself to grow, even though I am a business coach, as well. So wherever you are, whatever you do, whatever bucket you are concentrating on right now, make sure you have someone that will guide you to be where you want to be, or actually get a new perspective from where you want to be. Yes, that answers your question,

 

Vera Lee 

Does answer my question very well, and I love the fact that you use the word perspective, as a visual artist myself, I'm often looking at things from a different perspective and helping people to see that sometimes you need to get out of your own perspective, and see yourself from someone else's view to realize what it is that you're actually giving off to other people, because we have a certain view of ourselves. That may not be how other people are seeing us sometimes and, and communication that can be very important. I also love the fact that you've spoken very eloquently about how every mentor needs a mentor. We are meant to be social animals, we are meant to be tribal communities, and we are meant to feed off and help each other and to learn off each other and, and it's that whole proximity is, is where it's at. Because the closer you are to many different people with many different skills and abilities, the more that we pick up on each of those things, and the more that we also can reflect more of ourselves in those situations. So I love that.

 

 

Yeah,

 

Malva Gasowski 

so

 

Malva Gasowski 

A lot of people have been saying to me when I was growing up, you got you got to learn from your mistakes. And I agree with that, please, you know, find the lesson learned from some from an adversity or from a glitch or from something that has not worked out well for you. Yes, learn from that. But I really like what, I don't remember who said it, someone said learn from other people's mistakes, why would you want to make those mistakes? So that is where my strength? my superpower is I know who to turn to. So I don't make the mistake. If they have been there. They'll tell me: Okay, this is what I've done. This is what worked. This is what didn't work. Try this. Yes, I still may be doing more mistakes later on. But at least they either will be conscious, because, okay, I know she had a downfall going down that avenue, specific avenue, I want to try it for myself with a little tweak. So it's a conscious decision. Or I will just come across, let's say different data and different things that are happening, making me learn. But at least I know I did the best research possible. Going back to what you said that we are meant to be social creatures and learning from others. So one of the things that the stigmas that I have to be, I feel that I'm fighting against left, right and center is actually with motherhood and parenting. So for example, although we understand that it takes a village to raise a child, we understand that a lot of people say that, although we understand you always have your mum and your dad to turn to or your friends to turn to regarding for example, parenting. But on the other hand, moms generally feel no one's going to tell me what to do as a parent. Well, they should sweetheart because the moment you become a parent is not the moment you get all of the neuroscientists, all the doctors degrees on Child Development all the doctor medical doctor, knowledge inside your head, personal skills, communication skills, conflict management time management. I'm sorry, these are not innate skills, you need to learn them and the fact that you were able to bring a loving child into this world doesn't automatically give you those skills and it's okay to turn to someone because you don't have to be the perfect mother. You are perfect just the way you are. But that doesn't mean you can't learn from other people. So this is another aspect about a mentor needs to find a mentor. Yes, but a normal person who is struggling in a new environment, who is not a mentor in that environment should too have someone to turn to.

 

Vera Lee 

Yes, absolutely. And it's, it's that whole thing of we grow with our children, there's a reason that they, they take so much time to grow, because we need all that time to process how to be a parent. That's true.

 

Malva Gasowski 

That's true. And another thing about children, children, as homosapiens, so as people, they have the longest childhood, in any other animal, insect, whatever, living creature. and the reason why is because we as humans, have the need to actually give inpact on culture to our children as well. So again, this is a key element of learning and living in a social structure, living and communicating with others, making sure that we know not to go down the path of past mistakes. So thank god, there's no more World War Two, because we've learned from past mistakes. So again, these are the things that every generation is learning more and more just like technology is advancing. So our parenting skills, psychological data, medicine, and so on, and so forth. So you, Mom and Dad, you too, need to grow with your child learn with your child, which gives you enough time to still fix the mistakes you have made in the past. Should you have made any?

 

Vera Lee 

Yeah, that's right. I really love the way that you explain that. Because so many of our listeners will be parents. And one of the things that I often challenge people with is the fact that they'll say, Oh, I am just a mother or I am just a father, I am just a such and such. And I say that we're just, it is immediately downplaying all of your own superpowers, all of your own oneness, and just who you are. So it's one of those things that I really enjoy challenging people with that, because they often then sit with that for a moment and realize, oh, if I take out that just so instead of saying, I am just a mother, and instead of saying, I am a mother, that is so powerful, because then they're like, I am a mother.

 

Malva Gasowski 

It's a mindset.

 

Vera Lee 

Exactly. And it's just simple language, very small changes in our language that can make that huge difference.

 

Malva Gasowski 

I agree with that completely. The fact that you are a stay at home mom, for example, or a stay at home dad, that doesn't downplay what you do at all, there are people in the world who envy you. Yes, because number one, you have a child and they don't. Number two, because you have the luxury of spending time with that child. And number three, because you don't have to go to work and deal with the adversities that are happening at work. So when you say I'm a stay at home dad, or I'm a stay at home mom be proud of it is a badge that you should wear with pride. And then again, if you are a stay at home, mom or dad, listen to yourself, stay at home mom, or dad, that doesn't mean stay at home cleaning lady, stay at home cook, okay? It means be a parent, make sure you parent, your your children, and the cleaning, and the cooking, and the laundry, all of that can wait because your job should be to be a mum or dad, because that's why you stayed home. So again, I try to parents that I work with I tried to say, why did you stay home? Well to spend time with my kids? Are you? So I talked to a lady who who's a coach as well. And I'm going to give her the credit for it because it's not my sentence. So Anita Lee said, Does your weekly calendar actually reflect your priorities? So if you look at last week, does last week reflect your priorities? Because my priority is my family, let's say. And if I look at my calendar for the last week, how much of that time was actually quality time with your family? And if it wasn't the either change your planning or stop kidding yourself that this is your priority. Because it's not just say my priority is my career right now to food to put food on the table for my family. Yes, but it's my career because I could have worked somewhere else and gotten money from a different, let's say job that requires less time. So again, just to cap that off. Does last week refresh in your calendar reflect your priorities if it doesn't either change your priorities in your head in your mindset to alleviate let's say that guilt, or change your calendar in order to go according to what your priorities are.

 

Vera Lee 

I think a lot of the viewers will be thinking right now about their calendar and saying, hmm, because one of the things that we tend to be very good at as parents, and particularly if we do have busy lives, is filling our calendar with lots of events and things and not necessarily filling that time in the calendar with Will this is my time to spend during with my children, this activity, whether it's on craft, whether it's showing them how to cook, whether it's, you know, all these different parts of parenting that we love, that we tend to just do, rather than plan them into the calendar. So I love that.

 

Malva Gasowski 

Yeah,

 

Malva Gasowski 

Another thing that you just said that is crucial. A lot of the parents right now who spend a lot of time Well, maybe not now, let's say last year, when there was more access to everything. So a lot of parents who actually spend a lot of time at work, try to give the best to their children and from give the best to the to their children, they understand buying cooking classes for them, buying it guitar lessons for them, taking them to kung fu lessons, or going to swimming lessons or whatever activity you choose that you can actually maybe even, you know, hardware lessons or science lesson, whatever the area is, you as a mom and dad pay money for someone else to do things with your child. Okay, so you're paying someone else to bond with your child. And instead of thinking, what can I sign up my child in for them to develop at the very early stages? How about you think and plan instead of driving, let's say 45 minutes to a cooking class, waiting there for 30 minutes and then driving back for another 45? How about you bake a cake together. And it doesn't have to be yummy. If you don't know how to get a recipe and have fun with math. So for example, how much is half a cup? How much is one half, one, one quarter of a cup or whatever, a teaspoon a tablespoon? You're teaching your children in the process of actually cooking, having fun, yes, it will be a mess in the kitchen. If you're lucky, the cake will be good. If you're not you're gonna laugh and say at least it was fun. Okay, so again, making sure that you understand the process as being educational, fun and bonding, as opposed to Who can I take my child two, so they can learn to cook, your child doesn't need to learn to cook, your child needs to have fun while doing that, right? So again, changing that mindset instead of you know, let's go to a hardware store, which is organizing work, shop or crafts and arts. How about you just take daddy to the garage, or outside whatever I don't know, if you're living in an apartment or in a house, get some nails, get a stick and see, can I put the two sticks together? Can we make a raft to put in the lake or to put in the river or to put in the bath if you don't have a body of water? You know, again, the simple skills of every day will actually help your child also at school because number one, you're learning to plan number two, you're learning problem solving. Number three, you're using those fine motor skills. Those people that don't know that what fine motor skills are, are the muscles between your fingers and the ligaments in your hands. That will actually help your child later on to write cursive beautifully. So all those things that you're going to do like making mud pies, is going to be much better than commuting, wasting time. They're coming back and without bonding.

 

Malva Gasowski 

Hmm.

 

 

Yeah,

 

Vera Lee 

The other thing too, just listening to you talk about that. I when I did my Bachelor of Education degree, we learned a bit about the Steiner method. But we weren't learnt a lot about the Montessori method. And the basis of the Montessori method is to teach me so that I can do it myself. And I love that. And for me, since I learned that I've been applying that in every way shape and form that I could. And I found that through parenting, it was the thing that often set behind most of my decisions about how I was going to spend time with my child and how I was going to create environment for him to explore. But the other part of that that I love is the creativity side of it. And I love the fact that you said you can bake a cake and it doesn't have to taste good. Yes, not about the end process. Sorry, the end result. It's actually about the process and it's about what you get out of that the creativity, the spontaneity the connection that you're building together. Yeah, I love it. I love it.

 

Malva Gasowski 

And you know, you mentioned Montessori. It's something that is dear to my heart as well. But not only towards kids, but towards yourself. Yes. Okay. A lot of the adults who claim to be lifelong learners only, I claim to be a lifelong learner as well. So I'm not making sure that I am acknowledging someone in a negative way. Absolutely not. But when you claim to be a lifelong learner, think about it. Are you just acquiring knowledge? Or are you learning in order to be able to do it yourself? A lot of the knowledge that we have is acquired meaning we know or understand, but we can't do. So this is the next step is actually I know how to bake a cake. I understand how to read a recipe, but can I do it? Right? Can I tweak it? Maybe? Can I, you know, make it into something better. And this is where a lot of the adults that I work with have a downfall? Because they're scared of failure? I know it and that's good enough for me. No, it's not because you're not using it. And failure. Again, mindset is nothing else. But your first attempt in learning. This is when you fail, because this is the first attempt in learning. And that's fine. It doesn't have to be perfect. And again, this is what adults are struggling with. And let alone giving children the stage to actually work through those things is also another thing that we need to take into account.

 

Vera Lee 

Yes. And I love someone said to me a short time ago, about failing bit. And and then I sort of thought about that. And I said, Well, I see it as failing forward. Because not only when you fail, you can learn something from that and, and move through it. But it helps you to seek to look further for how you can change that situation and make it better next time. But when your children see you fail, then they're learning valuable lessons as well, that it's okay to fail.

 

 

Yeah,

 

Malva Gasowski 

you know,

 

Malva Gasowski 

I broke a glass yesterday. It happened it slipped out of my hand. You know, it's just the glass. There were no swearing, no anger, no, nothing. My four year old said to me, that's okay, Mama mistakes happen. All we have to do is clean up. And that was it just warmed my heart because yes, mommy failed. And a lot of the times others might have screamed or another time someone would get angry. But the question is, you know, I buy cheap glasses, because I break them all the time and my children can break them as well. So it was just the dollar glass. Question is, is it worth my anger? No, clean it up. If anything, I'll go and buy another one. Because I don't want this additional stress on the children while they're learning independence that Oh, my goodness, this is a very expensive glass. And then Mommy will get angry because she worked so hard on earning money for this glass. And there's a whole story attached to this glass. So I buy the cheapest ones. Yeah, it's a break. It's fine. What do we have to do to fix it? That's all that matters. Yeah, like you said, failing forward.

 

Vera Lee 

Yeah, that's right. And it's also about realizing that things are just things. Like, I know that I grew in the year that I grew up my parents, you know, they were born in the in the 40s. And so when they got married, they get given a gift of beautiful crockery or cutlery or measuring glasses. And I grew up watching that stuff kept inside a cabinet for the good times, like, you know, for the special times when they'd have difference overseas. It rarely ever got used. And I had a an aunt of my mom's who passed away some years ago. And they asked us to go over and help them clean the house, too, which I did. And I was amazed at the amount of wedding presents now she was in her 80s when she passed away. She got married in her 20s and she had presents from their wedding that had never been taken out of their cases. They spent their entire life in cupboards and I just felt so sad. Yeah. So I know from that message, you know what everything I have. There is no such thing as that's the good stuff that's reserved, you know? No, it's all it's all usable. enjoyable. You got it, use it. Enjoy it. Yeah.

 

Malva Gasowski 

Yeah. Another thing like you said, I I'm a very strong believer of the mindset and the message that we give both to ourselves and our families. So let's think about the words that you said. You said, I'm going to use these glasses for a special occasion when friends come over our family, right? So what is the message that you're giving yourself? Per I'm not special enough to use it.

 

Malva Gasowski 

What message Are you giving to your family, you are not special enough for us to use it only when someone else comes in, are we allowed to use it, they're more special than we are. So I am not going to use the fine china because I don't have a friend over. I'm not going to use the finest cutlery with my child because there is no stranger in the house. So again, this is this is not to absolutely judge anyone but to show them what their mindset and the words that they're saying, are actually telling their body what your words utter your ears, hear and your brain and body acts upon. So it's quite important to if you don't feel comfortable with using, let's say, expensive or China, then don't buy it. My one that is less expensive that if it breaks, you'll be fine with it. Or let's say dresses, have Do you have clothes in your closet that you say, I'm going to only wear them for a special occasion? What says you can't make a special occasion. So today is wedding day occasion, I will put a white dress on my child I will you know, my girl child, and then I will dress my boys in fancy clothes. And I'm going to wear my wedding dress and we're just going to have a party for fun. Why not? Why? Yeah, like an hour like that?

 

Vera Lee 

Correct.

 

Vera Lee 

Yeah, absolutely. Dress up day dress up time.Yeah, it's a wonderful thing. And it's sometimes that's all it takes to get us out of a certain state of feeling and emotion to, you know, sometimes that can be just a little bit of change that we're after. And yeah, it really can change that mindset, you know, during an hour of dress up with the kids or or even just yourself, you know, very true.

 

Malva Gasowski 

So one of the things that the parents that I work with are work where are either business women or business men that already have an established career, which means that they have been in the job market, right, which means that they understand looking good, they understand being ready for our meeting, especially women, women like to take care of themselves, especially if they're in the corporate world, they need to have high heels or or you know, fancy shoes and a fancy dress and you know, slap on a face as I sell yet. So mascara and blush and lipstick. At least the some of the parents that I work with. I'm not saying everyone has to wear makeup, but I'm saying that this is where the difference is. So from that environment, you are a mom, where you wake up and you don't have to write you don't have to put on makeup. You don't have to do your hair. You don't have to wear fancy clothes, you don't have to do anything because that little child doesn't really care. But the question is, do you care? Right? So a lot of the times when I talk to the moms, they have a problem with? Well, I used to be so taken care of and now I look like a slob. My question is why? Why? Oh, because I don't have time. Really think about it, it's five minutes to put on mascara and some blush. You don't have five minutes to feel better. And they're like, you know what I do? And I'm like, then do it. And then they realize I'm putting on mascara or I'm putting on blush or lipstick or brushing my hair or doing my nails whatever for me. Not for anyone else not because of the social structure that I am in. But for me, mind you if I'm home alone, which practically never happens, but when I am home, I know I still put on my makeup. I still put on my good clothes, because why not be special, you're special who you are whenever you are.

 

Vera Lee 

Absolutely. And it's interesting that you bring up the makeup because a little while ago I put a post on my feed which was do you think people need? Or do you? Do you believe women need to wear makeup to be considered professional. And the amount of comments that were going back and forth between people was quite astonishing. Now I myself don't wear makeup much these days. And there's a couple of reasons for that. But the main one is because I'm quite allergic to pretty much every makeup I've tried. So I would rather I'm quite happy with the way I look. So I would rather not have that allergic reaction. However, in certain circles, it is expected that I would wear it. I'm constantly coming up against that stereotype or that judgment from other people, of which I obviously combat myself with, with lots of different reasons as to why the judgment is not necessary and as to why everybody has their own choice. And then what I found interesting was the amount of people that thought, or responded in a way that made the assumption that I was perhaps having an issue with trying to work out whether I was going to wear makeup or not. Now, as I said, I'm very comfortable not wearing makeup. But to hear people for the things that they said, it became very apparent to me that there was about a half half split half of the comments where everyone's comfortable. Nobody needs to wear makeup. It's it's not a requirement. It shouldn't be a requirement these days, even in any workplace. The other half, were people saying, look, I like to wear makeup, because it makes me feel good. But it was interesting to me that even that half was split again into some that were, well, I only wear makeup because I'm not comfortable going out and having anyone see me without makeup, which is a different issue, too. I choose to wear it for myself. And I myself personally do not judge anyone for wearing makeup not wearing makeup, it makes no difference to me. And it actually makes no difference to a lot of people. But it really was quite striking to me to see the amount of I think passive aggression that came out from some people. When, you know, reading those comments that were saying, well, you should wear makeup or you shouldn't. So yeah, I found that quite fascinating. It was fine.

 

Malva Gasowski 

It is a hot topic. And this is a topic not only discussed, like you said on posts not only discussed on forums, but also discussed in our own heads, should I or shouldn't or what should I do, I too have an allergic reaction to some makeup so I choose not to wear it and it's fine. It's okay. I love to wear makeup. I love when I have lush and when I have eyeshadows and, and lipstick, because I like it, why not? If I like something, I'll do it. So it's not a matter of makeup. It's a matter of any topic.

 

Malva Gasowski 

mind you. I had so many people telling me you: Should have children. After I had the first one. You should have a second one. After I had the second one, you should have a third one after I had the third one, why did you have a third one. So people feel left, right and center no matter how close or how far these people are from you, people sometimes feel that they are entitled to judge you and give you their opinion. When it is something that you are okay with you will have no obligation to justify your opinions. So for example, I have a lot of food allergies. And one of the allergies is sugar and flour. I'm not allowed to eat sugar, eggs, flour and milk. Technically, if you think about it, that's all the pastry cakes bread ever possible. Yeah. So going to family gatherings. Do you know the amount of judgment I get? Because people think, you know, oh, have a cake for goodness sake. Well, thank you. But would you actually tell a person who is sick? You know, stop taking your medication for goodness sake? No, you wouldn't. So my medication is lack of eating those things, because then I will get sick. So you know, the people think they have the possibility to judge you. And that's fine. The only thing that you should know is that you are okay with who you are and what you do. Okay, so if people, okay, I'm a very delicate and positive and happy person. But that doesn't mean I'm not assertive. There are times when I do need to exercise and exhibit my assertiveness almost to the to the level of like you said passive aggressive where I say I'm sorry, but I don't recall asking your opinion. So sometimes you just have to put that boundary of have to, this is my life, my opinion, my choice, whatever it is, as long as you're okay with it, and you're not hurting anyone? Yeah, you're fine. You have no obligation to actually explain yourself to others, unless you choose to.

 

Vera Lee 

Yes, absolutely. And I believe too, that you can choose whether you take on information or not. So when people are offering their judgement of you, I often say well, you can have that back, because that doesn't belong to me. And I also quite often challenged them IE making an assumption here, because most judgment is based on assumption. And I do like you I have food allergies, I'm allergic to fructose. And fructose is found in most fruits and vegetables. So all the good food, so I could eat all the pastries and everything if I wanted and I would be okay. But I choose not to because that's not healthy for my body. So I am very restricted in what I do eat and can eat. And again, people just think I'm making a choice. They look at me and my size. And they think that I'm just either embarrassed to wait in front of other people. Or what else have I heard that? You know, I'm just trying to diet. So I'm trying to stop myself to lose weight and, and they'll come up with a wide variety of things. Yeah, yeah, it's a good one. I'm sure for whatever size you are, it seems to be one that people will blanket on to others, and

 

Malva Gasowski 

Oh Stop not controlling your diet so much you can indicate you can afford it. Thank you for your opinion. I knew that. That is the exact thing that I needed in my life today. (sarcasm)

 

Vera Lee 

Yeah. So I actually quite enjoy sometimes very nicely saying to people, I'd love to know why you said that. Because I'd like to know the assumptions behind it. And just not not to defend myself because I don't I don't need that. In that situation. I just give it back to them. But to have them just second think for once that the words that they use impact other people. And it's like you were saying when people offer judgment, often they use that word should. Yeah. And I really don't like that word should in most contexts. Because it's like telling you, well, you must, you should do this. And that's not only giving them the opinion, it then implies that if you don't that you're not doing what is required. And that often is is just simply an opinion. You got me thinking now, am I the one that uses the word should I got to think about myself?

 

Malva Gasowski 

I actually needed that. But another thing. Another thing is that a lot of people exhibit judgment on children because, again, this is one of the areas of my expertise. So for example, when my daughter chooses not to listen to another adult, she doesn't have to What gives you the right to power over her right? You're just an adult on the street. The fact You're older, in my opinion, of course, doesn't mean that you can take control over her opinions. If she says she doesn't want something that means she has the right to say no. And that's fine. And that goes to all the aunts and uncles who I want to kiss from you now Give it to me and the child saying no, well, that's rude. You're not being very nice. Like, I'm sorry, no, she's just telling you what her opinion is, she is entitled to her opinion, the fact that you need something or want something from her doesn't mean she has to give it to you. And that doesn't mean that she's a bad girl. Because that's another thing, you know, because you're not giving me what I want. You're a bad girl. And that is where people actually start to think, should I be a people pleaser? Should I go out of my comfort zone to please others hurting myself? Because I don't want to be judged as that bad girl. Do you understand what I'm trying to say?

 

Vera Lee 

I completely understand what you're trying to say.And, and I actually, I believe that that is so common, that people have stopped noticing the impact that it has. And I do, I experienced it myself. Growing up, I have witnessed it happening to my child, I even even something as simple as helping my child to learn to be independent by walking into a store, giving him some money and telling him to go and buy a particular item. And I have stood there at the back of the store and watched adults push this child literally out the way to go and stand in front of them. And I have watched people at the counter behind the counter, look at him, ignore him and serve everybody else. Yeah, yes, it's like very strong thing in our culture that needs to change. Yeah,

 

Malva Gasowski 

I agree. And I don't like it. And you know what, it's something that I fight with every single day. Because no matter your size, you're okay, no matter your age, you should be treated well. Like you said, this is something that I actually fight with as well. Now, a lot of people don't know me, if that are your listeners about, I'm five foot four 164 centimeters tall or short, I should say. So a lot of the people that I am surrounded with are also much bigger than me, I'm this petite little girl. And at times when I don't have makeup, and I'm going to, for example, my child's schooling practices, a lot of the seventh graders and the eighth graders are much bigger than me. And so I too, am sometimes treated badly by other adults, because they think I'm a child. I'm one of the children from that school. And then I realized I'm being put in someone else's shoes, and it doesn't feel good. No, it doesn't feel good the way adults sometimes treat children like you said, ignored, pushed through, I'm more important than you. So I will kind of bypass you in that line. That is that is brutal. And it should change. So one of the things that I'm doing in my life is exhibiting that change. When I see a child, I make sure that I am that change for that child.

 

Vera Lee 

Wonderful. Yeah, yeah. It's very important. And as people aware of this, it's it's important that we understand by by living, what we speak, and demonstrating that others will pick up and learn from it. Yeah.

 

Malva Gasowski 

And you know, it's fantastic to actually see, like I said, I have three children. And because I live by what I preach, sometimes it's not easy, but sometimes you have to kind of say, Okay, I have to do it this way, because this is what I believe in. There are no shortcuts. And so it's interesting to see that children notice. So the moment your child is seven or eight years old, they start to notice when others are treating other children, well, well or bad. So for example, my child was standing in line. And in front again, the same situation like like you mentioned, I gave him money he wanted to he had to go buy a particular item. I said Go ahead. You're a big boy, let's see if you can do it. You're big enough to actually have the the possibility and the chance to do it by yourself. He was scared of course, I'm like, Okay, if something's wrong, I'm right behind you like a few steps behind you. We can actually go through it together. Should there be a difficulty but I think you're fine. And in front of him, there was a mom, she was quite busy and she had a child with her around the age of, let's say, five, six. The child was just standing there and not moving and the mom or she had a big hand bag, obviously coming back from work so a laptop in another hand. She was trying to buy groceries for that for that child, I'm guessing for the family dinner, and her intentions. Technically around this situation. were quite good. She was the one that was scrambling and wiggling and moving. And all of a sudden with that big handbag that was full, and I'm guessing there were a lot of heavy things in there, she smacked that her own child in the head. And my automatic reaction would be Oh, I'm so sorry, baby. I didn't mean to I'm overwhelmed. I'm sorry. You put everything down kids that chose to make it better. Knowing that this would have been my reaction, I notice what my son did my son just his job dropped. Because, you know, that woman said, watch what you're doing, get out of my way towards her child where that child was just standing there. It was her own child, she was speaking to this. And my and I was wondering, is my seven year old son going to say anything about it? So the moment he walked out of the store, he said to me, Mommy, you know what? The way that mommy spoke to her own child was really disrespectful. Because it was the mums fault that she hit the child, she should have said, I'm sorry. And did not scold her. And I said, Yes, sweetheart, you are right. And my son said to me, You know what, I wish her mommy could see her her child's perspective on the matter. And it just melts my heart to know that my child at seven is very empathetic, to actually put himself in someone else's shoes to notice both situations while being anxious and doing something out of his own comfort zone at the same time. So whoever's listening to this, this is not me boasting about my children. This is me trying to give you examples of children see what you're doing. They notice they are very smart, make sure that the words that you're using and the actions that you're using towards them are positive, because they're going to affect them both positively and negatively in the long run.

 

Vera Lee 

Yes, they absolutely do. They're like sponges, they soak it all up. Yes, agree. let them soak up the good stuff.

 

Malva Gasowski 

I hope so.

 

Vera Lee 

Yeah. It's moments like that with parenting that I love. Like you said, it melts your heart. And we all have moments like that as parents we do. And they're the things that feed us because parenting is tough. And there can be a lot of adversity, in parenting. And parenting comes in all different forms, single parenting, you know, parenting stepchildren and, and being a parent to a stepchild when you've never had a child yourself. And, and there were just so many other examples that that Marfan correct? Correct. One of my friends, she just ran a mastermind, or a conference on interracial adoption? And oh, I love it. Yes, yeah, she has two children. And, you know, every time I see things like this, from the people around me, I'm reminded that diversity is wonderful. As long as we have that perspective, and as long as we are doing what we do with good intention, and reminded that our children are seeing everything that we do, and they are going to model our behavior and, and we have that opportunity to sow those seeds that will help them to grow into functioning human beings. Very true. Agreed 100%. So, we've had a wonderful time already. And to be honest, I haven't asked my opening question, which I usually do on my podcast, because we've just been going off on all these lovely tangents that I adore. So normally, I asked my guests, can you share with us your defining moment in life related to some sort of adversity where you realized for yourself that something within you needed to change?

 

Malva Gasowski 

Yeah, so like I said, a few minutes ago, there were times where I wasn't who I am today. And just like the book that I mentioned, at the beginning, changed my life because it changed who I am. It actually changed my mindset, my perspective. And thank goodness for that book. Because a few months later, I was in a situation that I would say, was a very difficult situation in my life, meaning I had to call off an international wedding four months before the four weeks, I'm sorry, one month, four weeks before the wedding day, four weeks. Yeah. So all of the airplane tickets were already purchased by the guests. All of the guests were coming and it was a tough choice. It was a tough choice of what to do. It wasn't of my mistake, but someone else's, or my partners at the time mistake that I'm like, No, I'm worth much more, I'm not getting into this, it's much better to cancel everything one month prior to the wedding than one month after I do not want to live like this, this is not going to work. So that moment was when I realized, thank goodness, I read the book, The Power of Kabbalah a few weeks, a few months earlier, when I was able to actually try to shift my life and say, ha, these are the changes that I made. maybe just maybe because of the changes that I made to myself, we are no longer aligned, and this shouldn't be go forward. And that's okay. Because with growth, a lot of things can happen. And if we're growing together, that's great. But we're if we're growing and separating in different directions, then it's time to realize what we're going to do. And just like we grow out of shoes, we grow out of clothes, when we're young, sometimes we do grow out of friendships as well, and relationships. So this wasn't a matter of just growing out of there were certain set of circumstances where I hope you don't mind me being too honest and open, I was cheated on repeatedly. And I just found that out, you know, with proof and everything for weeks before the wedding. And I'm like, do I really want this and being a couple's counselor at the time, because that was when I was getting my master's degree in couples counseling and my master's degree in education. Having gone through couples counseling as a master's and education, I was in contact with a lot of therapists, because one of the things that they say is you need to solve all your problems first, before you can actually help someone else solve matters. So I did go through counseling sessions prior. And I called up my my past counselor and I said, Listen, I need an hour with you, are you free? And we talked and it was the moment of self discovery where all right, this is what happened. It's not going to be easy. Because I was left with everything, all of the financial implications of paying for that wedding that wasn't happening. I that person just jet off. I was left with two mortgages, because we were, you know, we were planning a whole life together. So everything was there. And on top of that moment, I actually lost my job. Wow, that's a moment. So that all happened in one week almost. Yeah, it was a lot to be honest. And I'm like, Alright, I need a day or two, to be in my own pity to have my grief moment. And then after a day or two, I'm like, you know what, I'm slapping on my blush, I'm slapping on my mascara, I'm putting on my good dress. And I made a commitment to myself that day, that every single day, for the next month, when someone invites me out of the house, I'm going to say yes, no matter who it is, because and if it's not, if someone doesn't invite me, then I'm inviting myself out. I made sure that I was out of the house for the next month, every single day whenever I was free. And the reason why I did that is because again, I'm a social person, again, I feed off other people. And every single time I went out, even it was in the marketplace to actually sit down and have a cup of coffee by myself with my dog by my side. That was enough to say, you know what, it's not why me? It's why not! Aren't I better off now. And you know, that month of self discovery that month of discovering everything that is around me, discovering the positive in every situation and not dwelling on the door that just closed was so much better for me and so growing personally, that I realized, you know what, this is where my seven buckets come into play. Because I was still healthy. And I was taking care of my body. Yes, I lost my relationship. Okay, this is a bucket that I'll need to fill. But let's first focus on personal development, making sure that you're complete as a whole. You lost a big contract. That's okay. Does that mean you lost your skills? No, you didn't lose your skills, go out there and show your skills and within a week I was I had a new job, a better job. And then I said, You know what, I still have my passions. I still do things I still train my dog. We still go to exhibit, this is still there. And then the next bucket, I'm like, I still have all of my friends to support me. And I still have my family apart from that one relationship. So I came to this, and I went back to my boss, and I said, you know, what, because of the book that you gave me a few weeks or months back, I don't remember the timeframe. It's not important. I'm okay. And he's like, What do you mean, you're okay. Well, I lost one contract, that was a very big financial contract, I, I have to still take care of the the guests that are flying in, because some still chose to fly in. I still have to get, you know, organize the two mortgages, make sure that I pay for them, make sure that we sell those things, it was all on me, I still have to cancel all of the wedding stuff. But that is no longer an emotional attachment. It was just an assignment that I had to do. Because I have so much more to give, then, then before and I realized, you know what? I'm fine. And it's fine. And it's okay, because I've got more to offer. And having said that, that is why I am so happy to actually speak to like you said, Do you have a mentor. And I'm very happy to speak to my mentors as well, because they give me a different perspective in all areas. And one of the things that Cindy said, for example, the one that I mentioned earlier, she said, a lot of the people that I know and that come to me because she is also a coach or business one, they were their problems and issues as a badge. Which means I identify with my problems and my issues. This is my monetization, this is my buy in to. And then you think about what is that your buy into two friends talking to you to you are getting the attention to you getting the pity to you still being invited, for example, to parties, because you're always going to be the goof one, or you're always going to be the one that people will say, Oh, I'm so sorry, that your relationship didn't work out 20 years ago. Okay. So, you know, the question is, do you want your problem to be your badge? Do you want your problem to be your buy in? I personally don't, okay, I want my problems to be solved, to be learned from to be left alone, and to go forward, because then I'm happy, and I want others to be happy. So if you are there and you have a problem, whoever's listening to this, think about it is that problem, something that you identify with, and is your badge that you're wearing? Or is, and that is a problem that you have been working on over and over, but technically not solving. If that's the case, drop it. It's just the heavy weight, grow from it and move forward. But if it's just an issue that came into your life now, or let's say recently, you need to work upon it, and you are going to go forward, then that's a different case. But I'm talking about these issues that and the problems that we have, that we are almost priding ourselves in and we don't want to solve them, we just want to talk about them and make sure that other service feels empathy or sympathy towards that. If that's the case, I don't want to be in that group of people. And I really advise you for your own sanity and your own personal growth, to change that, because it's possible, and make sure that other people don't pity you, but admire you because I would prefer admiration over pity any day.

 

Vera Lee 

any day. Yeah, they are very powerful words. And I think sometimes people misinterpret the comfort in what they know. And they Yeah, and they don't realize that by repeating, repeating that language that they say to themselves, whether it's telling everybody that negative part of the story, you know, that hurt and holding on to that and like you said, it's like a badge. And it's like, well, without this, who am I then who am I? Where am I going? Because if I don't have that, and that's what I've hung on to all this time. And that's what I know. Well, I'm afraid to step out of that. Because even if I don't like that, and that's what actually makes me miserable. I know it. And over here is what I don't know. And so often it's that fear of the not knowing that is stopping them from leaving that fulfilling unburdens life. Yeah, there is some there is a song from one of my favorite bands and they are a very heavy band from the 90s Allison Chains. Sorry not Allison Chains, the lead singer from Allison Chains, Layne Staley . But the song is from a mad season, which was a bad group that he formed with some members of Pearl Jam and screaming trees and a few others The song is called river of deceit. And it is the most beautiful song do you know of it?

 

Malva Gasowski 

I heard about it, yes, but I do know what after we watch this, I mean, after we record this, I'm going to go and listen to the words again. Because if you mentioned it, that means they're powerful. And I just don't remember all of them,

 

Vera Lee 

they are so powerful. And, you know, he, he had this battle with addiction. For him, it was drugs, mostly. And it did take his life. And he so eloquently explains that self deceit that people do, and it's that war with inside yourself. And that the struggle, and the words are so beautiful, and yet so painful at the same time. And just looking back on it, I feel very sad. I mean, obviously, again, I didn't know this person, but it's it's a, it's a road that a lot of people go down. And I feel sadness for that song every time I listen to it. However, I also see that I had many opportunities to go down the same road, and chose not to. And so for me, I also get the inspiration from it. And I also get the pat on the back well done, you saw that that was not the path to go down. And you chose differently, and so can other people. So I think it's really important. And also the way that you talk about the badge a lot of people talk about being labeled. And we've really discussed that in many different ways without using that term. Now to have a badge often brings across a more positive view. And absolutely, it can be. And I love the fact that the way that you described that as wearing their badge of what has happened to them and hanging on to that and that we don't want to have that badge, for example, where you're talking about yourself. And I relate with that as well. That, again, that's that different perspective. Words can mean different things in different contexts. And I love the fact that, that you explain that so beautifully, because so many of the listeners will understand that path. And they will either have been there and have worked their way out, but maybe keep pulling back sometimes some of them will still be there. And I I really hope that some of those people listening will be able to step back and see that slightly different perspective. And just think about that and have somebody that they can turn to, to talk about it. Because quite often talking to other people, as you mentioned is where we get that different perspective. And it's where we can also have people offer to help to help us through that fear. And to help us through to the unknown.

 

Malva Gasowski 

That is exactly what I wanted to say. Like if you realize that you are that person that I have described wearing that badge, your problem as a way of buying into, let's say relationships, and it's not a positive one, then you don't have to be alone, you can always ask others for help. And by others, I mean, either your friends, your family, sometimes even your dog, you know what, Hey, buddy, I need to talk. That's fine. Your dogs will come and listen and cuddle and so on. Or look for a specialist. Again, what you said with that song just kind of sums up also what I mentioned, meaning learn from others mistakes, don't go down those paths that you already know the end result won't be positive. So again, what do you want? The question of the hour is, what positive change Do you want to bring to your life and to the world? And once you know the answer to that, then let go of all of the why knees and say it happened. It's something to learn from, why not me? Right? Why can't I, you know, be an international best selling author. If you want to write a book? Why not me? Why can't I have a podcast and amazing podcast that inspires others? Why not me? Why can't I be a mom? If I can't do it? Physically, I can still be a foster mom. So why not? Instead of Why me? Why not me and then find that passion that you are. You've never had the chance or the possibilities because you were wasting your time on wearing that badge of honor of your adversity. Instead of learning from it growing from it and saying, yep, Been there, done that. No, thank you don't want to go that path again. Yeah. So it's your choice how you devote your time

 

Vera Lee 

It absolutely is. And that's what it comes down to at the end of the day is choice. And even if we're in a situation where we can't control other people, and perhaps the physical situation that we're in, we still always, always have that choice of how we will internalize the information, how we can respond, and how much we take on board, and how we can still make the choice to know who we are at our core, and not have other people interfering with. Thank you so much for being my guest today. It's a wonderful conversation.

 

Malva Gasowski 

A delight, to be honest, I'm very, very happy that you had invited me. I'm very pleased to have gotten to know you and hopefully reached your viewers not from a perspective of marketing because that is not my goal to be here from but from a perspective of sharing my story and sharing the possibility to maybe influence someone else's life. So someone can lead a more positive life. And if it's not negative, now, then don't ever go into the negative area, right. So learn from others mistakes. So again, I'm very delighted and honored to be here. Thank you for having me. Thank you, everyone for listening.

 

Vera Lee 

Well, another story, more windy moments and more reasons to feel inspired to change your adversity into your advantage. an integral part of the vision of the wind a movement is the ice acronym eyes for inspire. When you feel inspired, you are more likely to take action. C is for two things actually connection. You are not alone in this world. There are always people here who want to help you get through your adversity, and feel positive about your life and your purpose. It is also for courage. Courage, in my opinion, is feeling the fear and doing it anyway. And there lies the importance of connection. For sometimes we don't feel we have the courage to do things on our own. And yet once we have the emotional support of those people who we trust, it can help us to feel that fear and do it anyway. And lastly, the E is for empower, when we have that connection and the courage and the inspiration to know get our clarity of purpose or that is when we feel empowered to take the action that we want to do to change some aspect of our lives for the better.

 
 
 
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