The Refined Collective Podcast

By Kat Harris

Listen to a podcast, please open Podcast Republic app. Available on Google Play Store.


Category: Society & Culture

Open in Apple Podcasts


Open RSS feed


Open Website


Rate for this podcast

Subscribers: 36
Reviews: 0

Description

The Refined Collective Podcast is hosted by Kat Harris. Her vision is to create a safe space for women and men to take off the super-man cape of having it all together, and share their stories authentically and honestly.

Episode Date
Is My Body Bad? with Christopher West
38:09

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Today’s guest is a pretty big deal... I’m talking with the author of a book that has changed my life. Christopher West is a Doctor of Theology, devoted husband, father of five, and president of the Theology of the Body Institute. He is also the author of Good News About Sex and Marriage, Theology of the Body, and Our Bodies Tell God’s Story. Today, we talk about God’s divine vision for the woman’s body, and body theology 101.

 

Why have we demonized the Female Body?

 

  • “If Christmas is real, then woman’s body is heaven on earth. It is the dwelling place of the most high God. What does the enemy want to do? He wants to desecrate the temple.” -Christopher West

 

  • Book of Genesis— Lucifer’s hatred aimed at the woman and her ability to bear offspring

 

  • “Jealousy says ‘I wish I had what you have.’ But envy goes a step further and it says ‘I hate that you have it and I want you to hate that you have it.’” -Christopher West

 

 

“That’s the purpose of the body— to overflow with divine love.” -Christopher West

 

What is the root of toxic masculinity?

  • Chrstipher unpacks the idea of toxic masculinity in a biblical lens.

 

  • “The problem is that fallen men are exerting their fallen masculinity in this world. And fallen masculinity is always aimed at women in a degrading kind of way.” -Christopher West

 

  • Ephesians 3 // Apostle Paul says his mission is to make plain to everyone the mystery that has been hidden in God
  • Ephesians 5 // “This is a mega mystery— and it refers to Christ and the church”

 

“One woman’s body changed the world because she said yes to God’s plan for her life.” - Christopher West

 

Resources

 

I’m an avid reader and always have at least 3 books going at once. Anyone else love getting lost in a good fiction book? I just got a new book I’m super excited about called The Lost and Found Bookshop by Susan Wiggs. This NYT Bestseller now in paperback is the perfect feel-good summer read for a beach read or your book club. Grab your copy anywhere books are sold or find more at SusanWiggs.com.

 

Finding a bra that fits, is comfortable, and cute or sexy… it feels impossible. I recently had an enjoyable bra shopping experience with the female-founded and led company Natori. They have everything from size A to G. Go to Natori.com and apply the code REFINED at checkout for 15% off at checkout. Be sure to use the hashtag #MyNatori on social media.

 

We invest large amounts of money into our careers. But with things like love, we think “It’ll happen when it happens,” and with things like kids, we think “I’ll think about that down the road.” What if we were just as intentional about our reproductive health as we are our careers? Modern Fertility is an easy way to test your fertility with an at-home test at a fraction of the cost. Go to ModernFertility.com/refined for $20 off your fertility test.



Jun 16, 2021
What Does the Bible Really Say About Sex: Part II
38:46

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

I grew up in the Bible Belt South.

I was taught good Christians save sex for marriage.

I loved God + wanted to do it ‘His way’, so I nodded + smiled.

Only in my late 20s did I realize I had no idea what the Bible actually said about sex.

I only knew what my pastors told me.

I needed to find out for myself what the Bible really said about sex, + then I needed to decide if I cared what it had to say.

 

This episode unpacks Part II of that journey. 

 

Last week on the podcast, I shared all about my experience growing up in Christian culture, my choice to wait until marriage for sex, and the major struggle waiting was for me. In last weeks episode, I also did a deep dive into what the New Testament says about sex. If you haven’t listened yet, make sure you do that here. This week, I am continuing the conversation with an exploration of the Old Testament.

 

There’s a deeper ‘why’

  • 1 Samuel 16:7 // God looks at the heart.
  • Genesis 1:1 // Creation of humanity and climax of creation.
  • God acknowledges that it is not good for humans to be alone, but he doesn’t instantly satisfy that longing. He let’s Adam work and sit in his desire.
  • Chapter 2 of Genesis // 

 

The man said,

“This is now bone of my bones

    and flesh of my flesh;

she shall be called ‘woman,’

    for she was taken out of man.”

24 That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.

25 Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.

 

Introducing sex

  • The initial precendence of sex was post-marriage.
  • “Yada” Jewish word ‘to know’ is used to describe sex— it also happens to be the same word used for God knowing us. It’s not just these physical acts, it’s MIND, BODY, SOUL, SPIRIT, DEEP KNOWING.
  • In Hebrew culture, you moved out once and it meant something. The man would build her a house. But today, we move all the time and have dozens of roommates.
  • These houses were often built on his family property— this means a few things:
    • Job
    • Willing to put in the time for her
    • Diligence
    • Showing everyone he’s a one woman kind of guy
    • Willing to do whatever it takes to let her know he’s in it for the long haul

 

“I’ve kissed more than one guy who wanted to kiss me after a couple of drinks at night, but never wanted to hold my hand in the daylight at brunch with his friends on a Saturday.” - Kat Harris

 

The Bible is (ummm…) Erotic

  • The Song of Solomon was so erotic that Hebrew boys weren’t allowed to read it until they were men.
  • King Solomon’s wife expresses enthusiastic consent and empowered sexuality from the get-go showing sex was about more than pro-creation: Pleasure matters to God.

 

“I saw a God vision for sex that is robust and beautiful and deep and rich… and it was transforming to me.” - Kat Harris

 

Reflection Questions

  • What are your thoughts on sex after listening to Part I + II?
  • Has anything shifted?
  • What question do you still have?
  • How would you describe the genesis 2 type of love?

 

Resources

 

I have become very invested in taking care of my skin— I just wish I had started earlier! Swedish skincare company Foreo strives to turn daily routines into vibrant rituals and celebrate aging gracefully. They bundled their most popular products into a bundle that is sold exclusively on Amazon. Go to Amazon.com and use coupon code REFINED35 to grab the set for $199 (it is valued at over $300!)

 

You’ve probably heard a lot about collagen over the years and know several people who swear by it. I’m here to tell you that it’s worth the hype. Collagen helps reduce fine lines and helps ease joint discomfort— pretty cool, right? You can put it in everything from a smoothie to banana bread. Go to AncientNutrition.com and use code REFINED for 20% off your first order.

 

I’m an avid reader and always have at least 3 books going at once. Anyone else love getting lost in a good fiction book? I just got a new book I’m super excited about called The Lost and Found Bookshop by Susan Wiggs. This NYT Bestseller now in paperback is the perfect feel-good summer read for a beach read or your book club. Grab your copy anywhere books are sold or find more at SusanWiggs.com.



Jun 09, 2021
What Does the Bible Really Say About Sex: Part I
43:00

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Warning: This episode covers a sensitive topic. I want to give you the opportunity to pause and listen when you are alone or use some headphones if you’re around delicate ears.

 

What does the Bible really say about sex?

Is there a difference between sexual desire and desire for sex?

How do I embrace my sexuality?

What if I never meet someone?

 

My journey has been imperfect, but the stumbles led me to where I am today. In this episode, I share my own stumbles in waiting for marriage, including the relationships that made me really question my decision to wait for marriage. If you want to hear more of that journey, check out My Breaking Point, an episode of the podcast where I read an excerpt from my book, Sexless in the City. After that breaking point, I decided to make my faith my own and find out why I believed what I believed. Here is Part I of what I discovered. (Part II coming next week.)

 

Where + When does the Bible talk about Sex?

  • The phrases “sexual immorality” or “fornification” popped up a lot in the New Testament and were always accompanied by the word “flee.” 
  • In 1 Corinthians 6:18, Paul tells the church to flee from porneia.
  • In 1 Corinthians 7:1–2 Paul encourages the Corinth church to get married in order to avoid the temptation of porneia. This set of verses is often used during biblical teaching on abstinence. 
    • Porneia: blanket word that encapsulated a lot of different things: pedophilia, beastiality, adultery…in essence it’s this bundled term for any sexual activity outside of marriage.
    • I can trust that if there is an invitation to flee from something it’s not because God hates sex or sexual activity…it’s because God has a more grand vision for whatever the thing is…

 

“Make a decision that is not rooted in ‘should’ or external expectation or shame, but one that is connected to abundance, wholeness, and freedom.” - Kat Harris

 

What Exactly is Sex?

  • How do you define sex?
  • Where did you come up with said definition?
  • Is sex one act? Or a pool of experiences?
  • What if you identify as LGBTQ+? Are the only people who can lose their virginity those who experience heterosexual attraction?
  • What if your partner is experiencing impotence?
  • What if you’re one of the 75% of females who only experience climax/orgasm through external stimulation?
  • Does your deffinition of sex expand when you consider these questions?

 

“I didn’t want to redefine sex because if I did, I might not be a virgin anymore.” - Kat Harris

 

Next episode, I’ll unpack what I found in the Old Testament about God and sex. But for now...

 

Reflection Questions

  • Have you felt as a person of faith that your virginity is tied to your standing with God?
  • How would you define sex?
  • Why would you define it that way?
  • Where did you come up with said definition?
  • What stood out to you today?
  • Pool of experiences vs. vertical race to a misguided goal.
  • Sit with it. Process. Talk with your friends about it.

 

Resources



Ladies, does it ever feel like your shorts were just not made for you? Title Nine is performance outdoor gear made by women for women that you can wear working out, hiking, or just running errands. It is built to perform and made to last. Go to TitleNine.com/refined for $10 off and free shipping on your order over $100!

 

This past year, I’ve been trying to perfect some recipes I can have in my back pocket when I have company. In all of these experiences, I realized how important it is to have good cooking tools. I just got a brand new knife set from MadeIn Cookware and it has been life-changing. Go to MadeInCookware.com/kat and use promo code KAT for 15% off your first order!


Finding a bra that fits, is comfortable, and cute or sexy… it feels impossible. I recently had an enjoyable bra shopping experience with the female-founded and led company Natori. They have everything from size A to G. Go to Natori.com and apply the code REFINED at checkout for 15% off at checkout. Be sure to use the hashtag #MyNatori on social media.

Jun 02, 2021
Learning to Listen: A Guided Meditation
22:38

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Prayer is talking to God.

Meditation is learning to listen to the voice of God.

One of my yoga instructors told me that years ago, and it freaked me out!

 

Meditation felt scary, woo-woo, and un-Christian.

But what my yoga instructor said all those years ago rang true in the moment. Truth has a way of doing that...

 

This month has been really special because I’ve dedicated it to mental health topics on the podcast. We’ve talked about when it’s time to go to therapy, how to identify your anxiety triggers, how to stabilize when you’re having an anxiety attack, and how to check in on your mental health.

 

I wanted to end this series on Mental Health by offering you a really practical tool to support your mental health: a guided meditation.

 

Whether you’ve meditated for years, or never in your life tried it before, I invite you to come, sit, be still, receive, and practice the art of listening. 

 

I believe God is speaking constantly, but we miss Him because we’re so busy speaking at Him.

 

Want to give it a try? 

 

Step By Step

  1. Find a comfortable position
  2. Put one hand on your heart and the other on your belly
  3. Start noticing your breath— each inhale and exhale
  4. Lengthen your inhales and exhales
  5. Scan your body— do you feel tightness?
  6. Release tension— particularly in your face, shoulders, or belly
  7. Allow your mind to wander, but recenter to your breath.

 

Yhwh

  • This name of God is vowel-less, even though we tend to say it with vowels.
  • This is the breath of life. 
    • Inhale yh. 
    • Exhale wh. 

 

Resources



It is finally HERE! My book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex is officially available online and in bookstores! If your copy arrives, make sure you post on social media and tag me! It makes my day to see it in your hands and I can’t wait for you to dive in.

May 27, 2021
Are You Really OK? A Mental Health Check Up with Debra Fileta
35:40

Unsure how to practically prioritize your mental health?

What are tangible ways you can check-in + gauge your current mental health?

Do you spiritually bypass your mental health struggles?

Sometimes we gaslight ourselves when it comes to spirituality + mental health. Here’s how...

 

Debra Fileta is a licensed professional counselor who specializes in dating, marriage, and relationship issues, as well as mental health disorders. She was on episode 97 of The Refined Collective. We talked about dating myths, and now she’s back for round two. She’s the author of True Love Dates, Choosing Marriage, and Love in Every Season! Her new book Are You Really OK? just released! Today, we’re talking about how to assess your own mental health and how to pursue help when it’s needed.

 

Mental Health 101

  • Emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical health all go hand-in-hand.

 

  • “Even good things cause an emotional reaction and stress. So the launch of a book— even though it’s an amazing experience— contributes to your stress… good things can lead to burnout.” - Debra

 

 

Emotional Health Check Up

  • We take physical health check ups seriously, but are we doing the same for our mental health?
  • How to have an emotional health check-in?
    • 1. Expressive writing: write down your emotions, no matter how messy. Studies show people who regularly do this experience fewer symptoms of stress.

 

  • “If we don’t take the time to stop and really process what is happening underneath, that pressure is going to build until it comes out in a way that we don’t have control over.” - Debra

 

 

Spiritual Health Check Up

  • 3 Spiritual Health Check-up Questions to Ask yourself::
    • 1. What people or experiences have shaped my view of God?
    • 2. What are some words that I’ve believed about God that aren’t actually based on truth?
    • 3. What characteristics of God— as revealed through his word— are most significant to me and my experience?

 

Mental Health Check Up

 

  • “Your mental health is not a sign of your character, it’s a sign of your chemistry” - Debra

 

  • Notice the patterns that contribute to your anxiety
    • Do you feel restless? Irritable? Soreness? Difficulty sleeping? Breathless?
  • Notice the patterns that contribute to your depression
    • Are you feeling sadness or apathy? Decreased pleasure in all the things you normally enjoy? An absent or uncontrollable appetite? Fatigue?
    • If you have any of these symptoms for two weeks, you can be diagnosed with depression. 



How to Say No

  • In an exclusive Patreon interview, Debra shares…
    • How to get to the root of why you feel the need to say “yes” always
    • How to set healthy boundaries in your life
  • Join Patreon and get access to this and dozens of other exclusive videos/interviews. Join here!

 

Resources



It is finally HERE! My book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex is officially available online and in bookstores! If your copy arrives, make sure you post on social media and tag me! It makes my day to see it in your hands and I can’t wait for you to dive in.


We invest large amounts of money into our careers. But with things like love, we think “It’ll happen when it happens,” and with things like kids, we think “I’ll think about that down the road.” What if we were just as intentional about our reproductive health as we are our careers? Modern Fertility is an easy way to test your fertility with an at-home test at a fraction of the cost. Go to ModernFertility.com/refined for $20 off your fertility test.

May 25, 2021
The Science of Anxiety + How to Stabilize Once You're Triggered
36:11

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Are you experiencing a lot of anxiety recently?

Does it feel unsolvable?

Like your anxiety attack will like it will never end?

What if you had tools to help ease your anxiety in the moment?

 

As you know, May is Mental Health Awareness Month and we’re getting serious about mental health over here on The Refined Collective Podcast. Two weeks ago, I spoke with Trauma Therapist Kobe Campbell all about therapy (tune in here if you missed it). And last week, I shared my own experience with anxiety and practical ways to identify your anxiety triggers outside of the moment (tune in here if you missed it). This week, I wanted to share how you can stabilize your anxiety when you’re in the moment.

 

A Collective Anxiety

  • Why are we experiencing so much anxiety? Collective depression + individual anxiety + trauma + relapses—from living in + through a pandemic — we’ve never done this before. 
  • Brene Brown talks about FFT ‘It’s the F-ing first time’
    • Listen to her talk about it in this podcast episode.
    • The older we get, the less we like trying new things. Trying new things is vulnerable and we don’t want to suck! Normalizing discomfort is our secret sauce
  1. Name it
  • What’s coming up? THIS IS THE 1ST PANDEMIC!
  1. Perspective 
  • This is not going to last forever
  1. Reality Check
  • Nothing is going as planned and that’s okay

 

The Science of Anxiety

  • Our thoughts activate our minds, then our minds activate the body, then our body activates fight or flight.
  • Symptoms like: dizziness, head rush, tingling, heart palpitations, paranoia, hypervigilance, can’t breathe, legs feel like jelly

 

3 Parts of the Brain

  1. NeoCortex/Prefrontal Cortex: rational, logic, problem-solving 
  2. Limbic: emotions, feeling, memories
  3. Reptilian/Primal: survival
  • When we’re triggered, the Primal Brain gets activated and the other two shut down.
  • In order to reactivate the others, you have to let the Primal Brain know you’re safe.

 

How do you speak to the Primal Brain to reactivate other two parts of our brain?

 

4 Things to Do In the Moment:

  1. Pause
  2. Breathe
  • Mindful breathing
  • DO IT NOW // 4 DEEP INHALES + EXHALES
    • This activates the parasympathetic nervous system, meaning you feel safe and your body stops pumping cortisol and adrenaline.
    • Quitting cigarette smoking is hard, in part, because it involves deep breathing.
  • BOXED BREATHING (Navy SEALs use this!)
    • Try it now (4x)
  1. Simple truths:
  • I am safe and at home in my body
  • I am here.
  • I can breathe.
  • I can feel discomfort and still be safe
  1. Ground

 

  • “It’s that inner sense of calm even though the outside world might feel a little scattered.” - Kate Eskuri

 

  • Grounding Rituals
  1. What are five things I can see? 
  2. What are four things I can feel? 
  3. What are three things I can hear? 
  4. What are two things I can smell right now? 
  5. What is one thing I can taste?

 

Reflection Questions

  •  

 

Resources

 

Stay tuned for next week’s episode, where I’ll lead a guided meditation!

 

It is finally HERE! My book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex is officially available online and in bookstores! If your copy arrives, make sure you post on social media and tag me! It makes my day to see it in your hands and I can’t wait for you to dive in.

 

When it comes to paying off debt, it can often feel like an uphill battle. Upstart can help you get ahead. It is the fast and easy way to pay off your debt with a personal loan all online. Unlike other lenders, Upstart looks at more than just your credit score, so they can offer smarter rates with trusted partners. Go to Upstart.com/refined to see how Upstart can lower your monthly payments today.

 

You’ve probably heard a lot about collagen over the years and know several people who swear by it. I’m here to tell you that it’s worth the hype. Collagen helps reduce fine lines and helps ease joint discomfort— pretty cool, right? You can put it in everything from a smoothie to banana bread. Go to AncientNutrition.com and use code REFINED for 20% off your first order.

May 19, 2021
Identifying Anxiety Triggers
44:20

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

What triggers our anxiety?

How can we identify our triggers outside of the moment?

How can we change our relationship with anxiety?

 

As you know, May is Mental Health Awareness Month and we’re getting serious about mental health over here on The Refined Collective Podcast. Last week, I spoke with Trauma Therapist Kobe Campbell all about therapy (tune in here if you missed it). This week, I wanted to talk all about how to identify stress and anxiety triggers outside of the moment.

 

My Anxiety Story

  • I was experiencing heart palpitations at night but thought I was just sleeping on the wrong side.
  • I prided myself on working 16 hour days, going out and being able to party, skip meals, and get up before the others to get ahead. It was intoxicating— I had friends who lived this way and encouraged a lifestyle of ‘I’ll sleep when I’m dead.’
  • The problem: I was being rewarded for my behavior—my business was growing, I was a jetsetter, business owner—I got a ton of opportunities in my career because I was a ‘yes’ person. 
  • Then, like an alcoholic moving to a bar—I moved to NYC. I’ve said for a long time, NYC is like being in the right place at the right time all the time if you’re open to it.

 

Manifested in the Physical

  • I had an unknown rash all over my body— I joked that it was my body being allergic to NYC.
  • One day I was shooting a wedding and almost fainted during family portraits. I stumbled and laughed it off but it was really scary. Then, at the reception bathroom floor—as soon as I left it left + it left. Chalked it up to dehydration— it was just a fluke.
  • The next weekend, I went to the hamptons for another shoot and the same thing happened.
  • The next week, it happened again. This time at church: a place I feel so safe.
  • Within a month I was a wreck: Terrified of leaving my house. Going to church felt anxiety-inducing. Shooting weddings felt like life or death. Being on the subways was the worst. Was this my new normal? I must be really losing it. I couldn’t live this way.

 

Why Me?

  • YOU HAVE TO LOOK BACK BEFORE YOU CAN LOOK FORWARD.
  • Here are the patterns I noticed every time I had a huge panic attack:
    • Lack of sleep 
      • I was fueled by fear in my career: if I’m not working, I’m not getting paid — if I don’t get paid, I can’t pay rent, buy food, take care of myself. One of the most anxiety inducing scenarios is when our core needs are in threat of not being met: 
        • Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: 5-tiered model pyramid approach to human needs. It goes from bottom to top. You can’t go to the next level without the previous level being supported. Basic needs are food, water, shelter, rest. Then above that is safety and security. Above that is belonging and love. Above that is esteem and accomplishment. At the very top is self-actualization.
    • Lack of food + water (big stretches of time without snack / meal
    • Alcohol the day before
    • Lots of caffeine
    • Overheated 
  • It was like I had been driving with my gas tank on E for 50 miles at 100 miles an hour and then hit a pothole and my engine exploded.
  • So when I got into a stressful situation like public speaking, shooting a wedding, being on a crowded subway... I was at a resting state of level 9 anxiety. The tiniest thing was setting me off. 

 

How could I set myself up for success outside of a stressful or triggering situation so that I could be at a resting rate of 1-3?

 

Back to the Basics

  • This is the bottom line. Life, work, relationships CANNOT happen if these aren’t happening first.
  • BACK TO MASLOW’S HIERARCHY OF NEEDS
    • Sleep 7-8 hours
    • Eat 3x day 
    • Have snacks with me at all times
    • Meditate daily + prayer— even if it’s brief
    • Workout— even if (maybe especially if) you don’t feel like it
  • Then I took it a step further
    • Cut out alcohol
      • I gave up alcohol for 6 months + 3/4 of the way through that my dad relapsed into drug abuse. This was one of the most traumatizing experiences of my life and yet I didn’t have one panic attack— it’s like God knew and wanted to help set my body up for success.
    • Cut out caffeine 
      • I used to have one big cup in the morning. I tried to quit cold turkey, but it wasn’t working.
      • Research coffee withdrawal symptoms 
      • Wanted it to be sustainable, so here’s what I did:
        • Week one // no caffeine past noon
        • Week 2 // half a cup of coffee
        • Week 3 // alternated caffeine/decaf every other day
        • Week 4 // all decaf
      • Recently I was recording a podcast and I was feeling a little light headed and I was like what is going on? I had caffeine! Now that I’ve removed it, I can tell when it’s impacting me.

 

Taking My Thoughts Captive

 

  • “There were many terrible things in my life and most of them never happened.” Michel de Montaigne / French Philosopher

 

  • Public speaking— I once froze on stage + it was scary
    • I was afraid of throwing up + having a seizure, fainting — which has never happened to me before on stage.
    • I’ve always felt comfortable on stage. But then after I froze; it was all I could think about.
    • Constantly strategizing about how I could make an exit: where were the physical exits, excuses I could make if I needed to leave—I’d just want to get out of there to the nearest restroom to lock myself in until I was better.
    • Underneath the strategizing was fear:
      • I can be safe for other people (duh im on stage).
      • But if I have need, no one is safe.
      • I can’t be seen as imperfect or I won’t be loved.
      • Humiliation, death.
  • THE RUNAWAY TRAIN of my thoughts + obsessing over potential worst case scenarios was taking over my life. What happened is I became more afraid of what could happen than anything that had actually happened.

 

Excerpt from Sexless in the City:

Paul, one of the great teachers of the New Testament, charged the church of Corinth to be ever so aware of their thought life. Paul doesn’t say they should take their thoughts captive; he says they are a people who take their thoughts captive1. The assumption is that they are already a people who understand the power of their thoughts, and regularly examine the source and root of them. 

He encourages them to keep that up. In Romans, Paul says to allow ourselves to be transformed with renewed minds.2 Later, to the church in Philippi, he says, “Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”3 In other words, Paul knew something powerful: our mindsets determine our reality. 

We become what we think about. What are you spending your time thinking about? 

I don’t think we all wake up in the morning as masochists. These limiting beliefs feel true because we’ve often had real experiences that act as proof. Our circumstances are real; it’s not like they don’t happen. Our past impacts our present and can prevent us from our future if we let it. That’s why the invitation of faith is so profound. Faith invites us to have the courage to walk into a reality outside the here and now of our emotions and circumstances. It’s a more ultimate reality. Faith beckons us to lean into the possibility of the unseen and whispers, “Just because you know a story by heart doesn’t mean it’s true.”5 Narratives are always on the hunt for new evidence. So if we’re going to look for it anyway, we might as well look for evidence of God’s goodness and what’s possible. To do that, we first have to identify the limiting beliefs we’re holding on to, release them, flip the script, and start looking for new evidence. 

Put in the Work

  • You can’t really do this in the moment.
  1. PAUSE / BREATHE
  2. Thank your body: it’s trying to save your life
  3. GET CURIOUS:
  • What am I really afraid of happening here?
  • What’s the fear underneath the fear?
  • Even if the fear happens will I be ok?
  1. REPLACE with TRUTH
    • What do I need to hear right now? 
  • I am safe.
  • I have everything I need
  • Even if the worst case scenario happens, I am safe.
  • I can reach out and ask for support.
  • I am not alone.
  • I am accepted. 
  • I am loved.

 

Renewing our minds is an actual thing in science + scripture. Brains are pattern makers — we have to interrupt the pattern + look for evidence of a new way to make new neural pathways. Knowing what triggers fear/anxiety/depression/etc. outside of the situation will help give you tools to move through the moment. 

 

LIFE ISN’T ABOUT LIVING FEAR FREE; It’s about changing our relationship to fear. Fear ignites because our minds and bodies think our lives are in danger. Isn’t that incredible? Acknowledge the fear, ‘thank you for coming for a visit + now…you don’t get to be in the driver’s seat today.’

 

Reflection Questions

  • What triggers your anxiety?
  • What things in your life calm, bring peace, and stabilize you?
  • How can you get back to the basics? What is out of alignment and how can you prioritize it?
  • How can you love yourself well this week? (Fill your car up with gas before it’s on E + you’re stressed, meal prep, schedule rest.

 

Resources

 

Stay tuned for next week’s episode, where I’ll break down how to stabilize the moment once you’ve become activated in your anxiety.

 

It is finally HERE! My book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex is officially available online and in bookstores! If your copy arrives, make sure you post on social media and tag me! It makes my day to see it in your hands and I can’t wait for you to dive in.


Are you in the TRC Patreon community? Last week, Patreon got access to another conversation I had with Kobe Campbell and this week is Part II! We chat about why mental health is having a moment, how to tell if you’re stuck in trauma, and her thoughts on text therapy. Sign up HERE!

May 12, 2021
When Is It Time to Go to Therapy? with Kobe Campbell
49:25

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Trigger Warning: We’re talking about mental health in this episode and the conversations can get pretty heavy. If you have little ears around, grab some headphones. Feel free to pause and save this episode for another time if you don’t feel like you have the capacity for it right now.

 

Are your quirks really trauma responses?

Are you depressed or is it the weather?

Do you understand what it means to be triggered?

Are past traumas continuing to pop up in your life?

Are you wondering if it’s time to start therapy?

Are you wondering which type of therapy you need?

What if you can’t afford therapy?

Does time heal all?

 

This is the first episode of May, which is Mental Health Month. Every episode this month will be focused on mental health in some way. I couldn’t think of a better person to chat with for the very first episode of Mental Health May than trauma therapist Kobe Campbell. Kobe is also co-host of The Healing Circle Podcast, and founder of The Healing Circle Therapy & Wellness Center. She helps me unpack all of the questions above and you’ll walk away with concrete resources as you start your healing journey.

 

Are Your Quirks Really Trauma Responses?

 

  • “Until I went to a therapist, I did not realize that the ways I responded to the world around me were a reflection of me trying to soothe anxiety.” - Kobe

 

 

Have You Ever Felt Triggered?

  • We tend to see triggers as us remembering a past trauma, but it’s really us re-experiencing it. Our bodies feel like we’re back in that traumatic moment. And we won’t always know what the traumatic moment was.
  • Are you ever dishonest about your feelings because you feel embarrassed by them?

 

  • “What hurts you in the past...is going to hurt you when you’re older… The deep wounds that we feel do not disappear.” - Kobe
  • “Time can distract us, but that’s about it.” - Kobe

 

 

Should You Get A Therapist?

  • Are you working things out by venting to your girlfriends? Are you wondering when would be a good time to take it to a professional? 
  • I share the moment I knew it was time to get back into therapy.

 

  • “You don’t have to be in crisis to go to therapy. Therapy can be a preventative measure.” - Kobe

 

  • Start noticing the patterns in your life that pop up no matter the variables like time and place. We’re often too close to our own lives to see the full picture.

 

Which Type of Therapy Do You Need?

  • General Therapy
    • Like your family doctor who handles colds and flus, a general therapist handles things like anxiety and depression.
  • Specialized Therapy
    • They have a niche— they work with people who are working through a specific pain. This is for when you want to focus on things like sexual trauma, grief, family issues, or couple therapy. 
  • Psychiatrists vs Therapists
    • Psychiatrists are in the medical field, while therapists are in the mental health field. Psychiatrists are able to prescribe medications and provide official diagnoses. 

 

Should You Go On Medication?

  • Medication is trial and error sometimes to find the right fit.
  • I share my own experience in going the holistic route and when I ultimately felt open to trying medication.
  • There are doctors of osteopathic medicine that can use a blood test to see what medications would react well and poorly with you, narrowing down your trial and error search.

 

How Do You Find A Therapist?

  • Psychology Today is the Google of therapists. It lists names, degrees, licenses they have, and a bio that gives you a taste of who they are. It also lists fees, rates, and insurances they accept.
  • Most therapists offer free consultations, which are basically short connection calls to help you see if they are a good fit for you.
  • The biggest rule is that they should always make you feel safe. Always. 

 

  • “Therapy is there to help heal you, not to re-traumatize you. If you ever feel like you have to defend the reality of your pain, run as fast as you can.” - Kobe

 

 

What If You Can’t Afford Therapy?

  • Ask about sliding scale fees. Some therapists offer reduced rates. 
  • Open Paths Counseling Center is like Psychology Today, but for therapists who have reduced rate availability. 
  • The Loveland Foundation provides financial assistance for Black women and girls who are seeking therapy.
  • Churches often have scholarship funds for therapy.



Kobe and I didn’t get to all of the questions I had for her— there was just so much to cover! So we decided to keep it rolling and continue the conversation just for my Patreon community. Over the next two weeks, I’ll be releasing the continued conversation with Kobe— join now at patreon.com/therefinedcollective.

 

Resources



It is finally HERE! My book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex is officially available online and in bookstores! If your copy arrives, make sure you post on social media and tag me! It makes my day to see it in your hands and I can’t wait for you to dive in.

 

Are you in the TRC Patreon community? Last week, Patreon got access to an exclusive podcast episode where I chat with a guy friend about my current dating woes. And THIS week you can hear a continuation of my conversation with Kobe Campbell. Sign up HERE!

May 05, 2021
My Favorite ‘F’ Words: Faith + Feminism with Meghan Tschanz
59:06

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Feminism: the fight for equality between men and women.

 

Did you grow up thinking feminism was bad? 

That the word “feminism” was a dirty word?

That your faith had no space for feminism?

That women called to serve men?

 

This week, I’m talking with Meghan Tschanz— writer, speaker, and host of the Faith and Feminism Podcast— all about feminism. We talk about the things we gre up believing about women that we no longer believe, how we grew to become (and call ourselves) feminists, and why Jesus is a feminist.

 

The Narratives We’ve Been Told

  • Not only does growing up in an Evangelical context shape the way you view your role as a woman, but so does society in general.
  • Meghan talks about how as a kid she was taught that being competitive and strong was not her role and that her body was bad and shameful.

 

  • She remembers thinking, “I don’t think this is God, but this is all I know.” And she accepted it because she didn’t want to be seen as un-Christian.
  • “The text doesn’t ever say, ‘Well, men have a little more of the God image and women need to keep quiet.’” - Kat Harris

 

 

Changing the Narratives

  • Meghan shares how women can be protectors, providers, and pursuers. 
  • We all love a good “the way they met” story. Meghan shares hers and I open up about my frustration in striking out constantly— always kissing the frogs and never getting the prince.
  • I get honest about wanting a partner who will be a provider and how I have challenged myself to dig below the surface.
  • Being a stay-at-home mom doesn’t mean you’re not a feminist. 
  • “Overall, if we’re looking at the history of the world, if we’re looking at what is ailing women today, it’s a lack of choices, it’s being forced into a box.” - Meghan Tschanz

 

Women of the Bible

  • We unpack Mary and Martha’s stories in the Bible.
  • Junia’s name was changed to Junius to fit the gender roles.
  • Esther disobeyed and didn’t conform to gender roles.
  • Bottom line: women are very much in charge, empowered, and leading nations.

 

“The most damaging phrase is: it's always been done this way” - Grace Hopper

 

Growing up, what did you learn about being a woman?

From church? Culture? Home? School?

How have those narratives shaped how you view yourself + your experience today?

What do you think of the idea that Jesus could be a feminist?

What do you think feminism is? 

 

Write down your answers and process them. Be willing to go on a journey.

 

Resources



It is finally HERE! My book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex is officially available online and in bookstores! If your copy arrives, make sure you post on social media and tag me! It makes my day to see it in your hands and I can’t wait for you to dive in.

 

When it comes to paying off debt, it can often feel like an uphill battle. Upstart can help you get ahead. It is the fast and easy way to pay off your debt with a personal loan all online. Unlike other lenders, Upstart looks at more than just your credit score, so they can offer smarter rates with trusted partners. Go to Upstart.com/refined to see how Upstart can lower your monthly payments today.

Apr 28, 2021
Pure or Impure?: Reframing the Dialogue Around Sex with Brenda Marie Davies
01:07:36

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Trigger warning: Multiple discussions of sexual assault in this episode. 

 

Can you have conversations with people you don’t agree with theologically?

What does the Bible say about sex?

How can we reframe a dialogue around sex?

Is your sexual ethic rooted in fear?

 

You all know by now that I am a Christian and I am waiting for marriage to have sex. I thought it would be fun to have a conversation with a Christian who isn’t saving sex for marriage. And I couldn’t think of a better person to talk to. Brenda Marie Davies is the author of On Her Knees: Memoir of a Prayerful Jezebel and host of the YouTube channel and podcast God is Grey. She identifies as a progressive Christian and champions sex-positive, LGBTQ+ affirming, science-believing faith.

 

Reframing the dialogue

 

  • “When you’re conflating your sexuality with this idea of pure or impure, you’re suddenly creating this black and white narrative.” - Brenda

 

  • The phrase “sexual purity” can be particularly shaming and damaging for people who have experienced some sort of sexual assault.
  • Even reframing the phrase “losing your virginity” to “having your sexual debut.” We don’t lose anything when we have sex.
  • Brenda talks about how Ephesians is sometimes taken out of context to promote marital rape. This is not okay; there should always be enthusiastic consent.

 

  • “If someone is not enthusiastically consenting to an experience, then they are being coersed into sex.” - Brenda

 

 

The swinging pendulum

 

  • “My sexuality got completely hijacked by this ethic that was based on fear.” - Brenda

 

  • Brenda talks about her experience at the polar opposite sides of views on sex. She recalls her experience being in a church that worshipped purity.

 

  • “When we are living in these two polarities or extremes, you’re not just going to balance out in the middle… you don’t have the tools.” - Brenda
  • “I think we flatten sexuality, we have flattened what it means to be human, and we have compartmentalized ourselves which I don’t think is a God theology.” - Kat Harris

 

  • There is no way to reach a healthy sexual ethic by white-knuckling.

 

What does the Bible say about sex?

  • Brenda talks about her relationship with the bible, especially when it comes to what it says about sex.
  • You can find justifications in the Bible that says it is a sin and that says it is not a sin. 
  • “Please don’t say I’m not a Christian… it’s not a salvation issue.” - Brenda

 

Resources

  • Keep up with Brenda at GodisGrey.com and on IG at @godisgrey.
  • Listen to Brenda’s podcast, God is Grey, here.
  • Listen to my conversation with Brenda on her podcast here.
  • Listen to the TRC episode about why being pro-birth is not enough here.
  • Listen to the TRC episode about sexual desire here.
  • Read Brenda’s book On Her Knees here.



It is finally HERE! My book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex is officially available online and in bookstores! If your copy arrives, make sure you post on social media and tag me! It makes my day to see it in your hands and I can’t wait for you to dive in.

 

Whether it’s taking a walk around your neighborhood, running errands, or venturing out on your own, you always want to feel safe. With Birdie, you can keep doing what you love with added peace of mind. Birdie is a personal safety alarm that is easy to carry and simple to use. You can get 15% off your first purchase when you go to ShesBirdie.com/refined.

 

For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… what it’s like to date as a person with a public platform and sharing my own deconstruction of my faith. There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

Apr 21, 2021
Sexless in the City: My Breaking Point
25:59

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Drumroll please…

 

My book Sexless in the City launches next week! And so for the first time ever, I’m reading my book on the podcast this week. Here is chapter 1 of my book: My Breaking Point.

As you leave this episode, I want you to reflect on these questions:

  1. What did you learn about sex from home? Church? School? 
  2. Up until this point, what are the beliefs you have held about dating, desire, and sex?
  3. When and why did you start adhering to these beliefs?
  4. What questions do you still have?



For those of you who have pre-ordered, email social@therefinedwoman.com to claim your free bonus goodies! What sort of bonus goodies?

 

Haven’t pre-ordered yet? There’s still time to!

 

Go to sexlessinthecitybook.com and scroll down to see all of the places you can pre-order from. Then screenshot your receipt and send to social@therefinedwoman.com and we’ll make sure you get your pre-order goodies right to your inbox.

 

Why am I asking you to pre-order? Pre-ordering is actually one of the biggest ways you can support me and my book launch. The number of pre-order sales tells places like Barnes and Noble and Amazon how many books they should have in stock. I want my book to be available in allll the stores and that only happens if there is a demand for the book in stores! So thank you THANK YOU to everyone who has already pre-ordered. I hope you enjoy the bonus goodies as a token of my appreciation. 

 

I can’t wait for you all to dive into my book!

 

When it comes to paying off debt, it can often feel like an uphill battle. Upstart can help you get ahead. It is the fast and easy way to pay off your debt with a personal loan all online. Unlike other lenders, Upstart looks at more than just your credit score, so they can offer smarter rates with trusted partners. Go to Upstart.com/refined to see how Upstart can lower your monthly payments today.

Apr 14, 2021
Waiting for Marriage...Is It Really Worth It? with Nights at the Round Table
43:48

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

We are back with part two of the conversation I had with the hosts of the Nights at the Round Table Podcast (actress/comedian, Anjelah Johnson; singer/songwriter/producer, Manwell Reyes; and story-teller/preacher Brandon Smith). If you missed part one all about doubt and faith, go ahead and listen to that here. This week, we’re gonna talk about sex, ba-by. All of these guests are married and so I just had to ask them: Did you wait for marriage to have sex? Was it really worth the wait? Make sure you stay until the very end for this one!

 

Anjelah’s Waiting

  • Anjelah shares that her wedding night was awful (it’s not like the movies, y’all).
  • She recognized that she had a lot of work to do in unpacking purity culture and the narratives that she was taught growing up.

 

  • “Even learning and exploring to say ‘okay, maybe we could try toys or a vibrator,’ that was so bad.” -Anjelah

 

 

Manwell’s Experience

  • Manwell did not wait for marriage to have sex, but he clarifies that he wasn’t having casual sex either.

 

  • “Then I got saved and I was really scared of sex.” -Manwell

 

 

Brandon’s Waiting

  • Having grown up in a very Christian space, Brandon was taught to never have sex before marriage and it instilled a fear in him.
  • He shares his experiences in shutting down any sexual desire or thoughts.
  • His wedding night was special for him and his wife (who also waited for marriage).




Poll Responses

  • 69% of people on IG would wait again if they had to do it all over
  • 75% of people in my personal life would wait again if they had to do it all over
  • I also share some stories that some friends and followers sent in about their experiences, so make sure you tune in to the full episode!



Resources

  • For all things Manwell’s music, go to ManwellReyes.com.
  • For all things Anjelah, go to Anjelah.com.
  • Check out Laugh on Beat to keep up with all things NATRT here.
  • Check out Nights at the Round Table on iTunes here.
  • Listen to my episode on Nights at the Round Table here.
  • Check out TRC 145: Deconstruction 101 with Nights at the Round Table here.
  • Check out my Patreon video on how it feels to hear these things as someone who is waiting for marriage to have sex: watch here.




The countdown is ON for my book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex. It’s coming out in just over a month and you can still pre-order! It would mean so much to me if you did. Head over to sexlessinthecitybook.com to grab your copy! 

 

Make sure you send an email to social@therefinedwoman.com so you can get your pre-order goodies, like a digital download of the first two chapters to read right now, a resource and journaling guide, and a discount to my shop!


For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… how to answer the question “why are you still single?” How to know if your standards are too high. And an update on my dating life. YUP! There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

Apr 07, 2021
Deconstruction 101 with Nights at the Round Table
49:02

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Today marks a first on The Refined Collective Podcast… I have three guests on at the same time. Why? Because I just needed to talk to all of the hosts of the Nights at the Round Table Podcast. My guests are actress/comedian, Anjelah Johnson; singer/songwriter/producer, Manwell Reyes; and story-teller/preacher Brandon Smith. In this episode of TRC, we talk a lot about deconstruction, sex, and doubts. All four of us love God but have a different spiritual journey with God— and that is okay. 

 

Manwell’s Deconstruction

  • Manwell shares where his own spiritual journey began and how he began to question the black and white and step into the grey.

 

  • “I find myself more on the sides of people questioning than the people who swear to the good Lord Jesus that they’re correct.” -Manwell Reyes

 

 

Brandon’s Deconstruction

  • Brandon opens up about how reading Brian Zhar’s From Water to Wine marked a transformation in his spiritual journey.

 

  • “I’m allowed to have doubts and that is perfectly okay. I believe more in Jesus today than I did when I thought I had it all figured out.” -Brandon Smith

 

 

Anjelah’s Deconstruction

  • Anjelah reflects on entering the church as a child and shares her experience with purity culture. Her deconstruction didn’t start until after her marriage when she started questioning the views the church has towards the LGBTQ community.

 

  • “Something is not sitting right about being a Christian if that is what being a Christian is.” -Anjelah Johnson

 



Resources

  • For all things Manwell’s music, go to ManwellReyes.com.
  • For all things Anjelah, go to Anjelah.com.
  • Check out Laugh on Beat to keep up with all things NATRT here.
  • Check out Nights at the Round Table on iTunes here.
  • Listen to my episode on Nights at the Round Table here.
  • Buy Brian Zahnd’s Water to Wine: Some of My Story here.
  • Buy John Stott’s book Your Mind Matters here.

 

What came up for you today?

What questions are you afraid of asking?

Why aren’t you asking them?

What things have you accepted as true without doing your own research?

 

Next week, the hosts of the Nights at the Round Table Podcast are back for part two of our conversation where we talk all about sex. Specifically, if they had to do it all over again, would they still wait until marriage to have sex?

 

The countdown is ON for my book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex. It’s coming out in just over a month and you can still pre-order! It would mean so much to me if you did. Head over to sexlessinthecitybook.com to grab your copy! 

 

Real talk… After spending a whole pandemic in sweatpants, I decided to freshen up my wardrobe so I have been shopping and selling on Curtsy. I love it because they have the coolest pieces at thrift store prices. It has my favorite brands like Lululemon, Zara, and Levi’s at up to 70% off. If you want a sustainable way to get your favorite brands delivered to your door, download the Curtsy app and use promo code REFINED for 15% off your first order.

 

We invest large amounts of money into our careers. But with things like love, we think “It’ll happen when it happens,” and with things like kids, we think “I’ll think about that down the road.” What if we were just as intentional about our reproductive health as we are our careers? Modern Fertility is an easy way to test your fertility with an at-home test at a fraction of the cost. Go to ModernFertility.com/refined for $20 off your fertility test.

Mar 31, 2021
The Women Tell All: Should I Marry a Christian? with Carrie Lloyd and Kait Warman
42:25

This week, you’re in for a real treat. I’m doing a 3-part podcast series with fellow podcasters + single gals: Carrie Lloyd + Kait Warman. Carrie is a pastor, author, and podcast host. Kait is a relationship coach, podcast host, and author. 

 

The three of us are doing a series where we’re talking about dating in today’s culture on an episode of each of our podcasts + all three episodes are live this week! 

 

  1. The Women Tell All Part I: Should I marry a Christian?
  2. The Women Tell All Part II: Scarcity mindset + casual dating.
  3. The Women Tell All Part III: Why are they still single?

 

Today on TRC we’re talking about… is it a sin to date a man who isn’t a Christian? What do we do with the reality that there are more women in the church than men?

 

“Is it possible that for different people God could be doing a different thing?” - Kat Harris

 

Where are all of the single Godly men?

  • There are way more women in the church than men. I remember years ago when a pastor of mine said that based on numbers alone, so many Christian women are never going to find a Christian man to marry.
  • Kait notes that men are asking women out, but they’re just asking the same women out over and over again.
  • Carrie shares how it may not be a matter of matching up men and women as we consider that the men in the church may also be exploring their sexuality. 

 

“I’m always looking for the fruit of the spirit in someone… not just that they say they love Jesus.” - Carrie Lloyd

 

Is it a sin to date/marry someone who is not Christian?

  • Carrie shares her experiences in dating Christian men as an atheist and then dating non-Christian men as a Christian. She notes that we need to have more grace and kindness in this area.
  • I wonder if we put different expectations on men and women. Women aren’t “allowed” to date a non-Christian but men are because they’re expected to be a spiritual leader.
  • Kait shares her perspective that there needs to be more nuance around the conversation than sin or not a sin. She also opens up about an experience where she dated a man who walked the Christian walk but behind closed doors was abusive.
  • Carrie shares how even if someone decides to marry a non-Christian, they have to be honest with themselves about whether or not they’re holding an expectation for their spouse to become a Christian after they’re married.

 

“I have dated lots of guys who have walked and talked the Christian talk but yet in their hearts, they’re not actually becoming like Jesus.” - Kait Warman

 

If you liked this episode:

 

Resources for Carrie:

 

Resources for Kait:



The countdown is ON for my book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex. It’s coming out in just over a month and you can still pre-order! It would mean so much to me if you did. Head over to sexlessinthecitybook.com to grab your copy! 

 

For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… how to get over a breakup and what it’s really like to date as a person with a public platform. There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

Mar 24, 2021
Strong Women Run In My DNA: The Story of Hannah
25:02

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

This week is a solo show— just you and me, babe! This could potentially be a 5-part series, but I wanted to see how you liked it first because your opinion matters in all things TRC, friend! This is a community and you have a voice. So DM me on IG, email me, comment over on Patreon...and let me know if you want more of this series!

 

As the title suggests… Strong women run in my DNA. 

 

My dad’s mother, my Gaw Gaw, was a realtor and business owner. She was always starting new business ventures in the 60s. 

 

My mom’s mother, my grandma, was a stay at home mom and traveled all over the world. She primarily solo raised her four children because her husband, my grandfather, was always off in wars. She was also an incredible artist who would sketch fashion for brands and newspapers.

 

My own mom is a fiery, passionate, opinionated woman. When my parents got divorced and she didn’t have a college degree, she took care of and provided for her four children almost single-handedly with a part-time job working retail and teaching herself how to invest into the stock market.

 

I am a strong woman. If you’ve followed me for any length of time, you know that I am a woman of strength. I do not hide in the shadows. I am out there and I have things to say. 

 

But for so long, my femininity has felt like a liability. Both in my work and in church.

 

It almost felt as though to be a Christian I had to downplay who God created me to be: a strong, opinionated, loud, leader of a woman.

 

I played the game for a long time. But I finally got to a point where I wanted to search the scriptures for myself and figure out if there’s another option other than what society and church tells me my femininity is.

 

So today I want to explore Hannah’s story in the Bible.

 

Hannah’s Legacy

  • 1 Samuel 1:19 // “And God remembered Hannah”
  • Hannah’s debut in the Bible is a declaration of her barrenness— her infertility is a tender part of her story.
  • And she lived in a time where women had no rights. Marriage’s rooted in love, honor, and respect were not a thing.
  • Her pain became enmeshed in her identity. What if your biggest heartbreak, your biggest source of shame and insecurity is the thing you were known for and your own family made fun of you for it? Maybe you’ve lived this pain.
  • Hannah would offer sacrifices to the Hebrew God. She would weep and cry out to God for a child.
  • Instead of shaming her, Eli blesses her and prays with her for her miracle.
  • She doesn’t get immediately pregnant, but this experience lifted the fog of depression she was experiencing. 
  • She went on to have 6 children. She named her first child Samuel, which means “God heard.”

 

God hears us. He is moved to compassion and action on our behalf. Our prayers don’t go into the abyss.

 

Some questions to reflect on:

  • What’s the most painful part of your story? 
  • What would it feel like for that to be what you’re known for?
  • In what ways do you think Hannah exhibits strength as a woman?
  • In what ways is Hannah’s femininity her greatest asset?
  • What is the thing in your life you are begging God for? The breakthrough that feels impossible.

 

Lay out the cries of your heart before God.



Resources

  • Listen to TRC Ep 048: How to Praise Before Our Breakthrough here.
  • If you liked this episode, let me know! I would love to share more of this series if you’re interested. Slide into my DMs or leave a review on iTunes sharing your thoughts!



The countdown is ON for my book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex. It’s coming out in just over a month and you can still pre-order! It would mean so much to me if you did. Head over to sexlessinthecitybook.com to grab your copy! 

 

Whether it’s taking a walk around your neighborhood, running errands, or venturing out on your own, you always want to feel safe. With Birdie, you can keep doing what you love with added peace of mind. Birdie is a personal safety alarm that is easy to carry and simple to use. You can get 15% off your first purchase when you go to ShesBirdie.com/refined.

 

For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… doubting my faith and my fertility journey. There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

Mar 17, 2021
Dating is a Curb, NOT a Cliff with Dr. Christie Kederian
01:01:23

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Dr. Christie Kederian is a psychologist and a former eHarmony matchmaker. She now offers coaching from everything to life, career, and dating/relationships. You may recognize her from when she took over my Instagram stories a while back. We talk about our reactions to Indian Matchmaking on Netflix, the science behind compatibility, removing the pressure from dating, and best practices for online dating.

 

“You can find two people who look like they could be a good match on paper… but we can’t predict all the factors because we’re dealing with people.”



The science behind compatibility 

  • Dr. Niel Clark Warren started eHarmony and researched the 29 dimensions of compatibility. 

 

  • “Even though they say opposites attract, often it’s people who are really similar in very important ways that end up having and creating long lasting love in a relationship.”

 

  • Consider...
    • How are we similar in important ways?
    • Personality tests like the Myers Briggs. The 2nd and 3rd letters in your Myers Briggs are a reflection of your internal world. The more these pieces are in alignment, the more compatible you are.
  • Don’t look for someone to complete you and fill in the missing pieces.

 

Let’s talk about spark and chemistry

 

  • “Ladies, if it’s peaceful it’s marriage material. If it’s got ‘I wonder if he’s going to text me back today’ energy; it’s trauma not yet healed.”

 

  • The #1 way to know if he’s the one for you: if he’s been consistent over time.
  • Know what is triggering your attachment style and learn to show up in wholeness
    • Notice where your mind is going and journal through and process what old narratives or traumas it is bringing up for you.
    • If you are seeking clarity, don’t be afraid to check in and talk about it— no matter how early on it is in the relationship. Clarity allows you to move forward and act out of a non-triggered place.
    • Notice patterns and then clarify. Are you making stories in your mind and acting on assumption?

 

Dating is a curb, not a cliff

  • You can date someone with integrity without fantasizing about the wedding on the first date and expecting full commitment from them immediately.
  • Get clear on what you want and then surrender to the process. If 2020 taught me anything, it’s that I don’t have as much control as I think.
  • Maybe you’re not getting naked with them physically, but are you getting naked emotionally on the first date? There is no shortcut to intimacy. 

 

  • “It’s ok to be dating and just be dating.” Not every relationship has to be exclusive.

 

 

Dating apps best practices

 

  • “The dating app is a tool; it’s more about how you use the tool rather than what’s the perfect app.”

 

  • Hinge, Bumble, and Coffee Meets Bagel are all great. Give different apps a try.
  • If you’re in a bigger city, use the silver bullet swipe method.
    • What’s the most important quality you’re looking for?
  • Stick with the app that you feel comfortable being consistent on.

 

Resources

 

 

The countdown is ON for my book, Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex. It’s coming out in just a few weeks and you can still pre-order! It would mean so much to me if you did. Head over to bit.ly/kat-sexless to grab your copy!

 

We invest large amounts of money into our careers. But with things like love, we think “It’ll happen when it happens,” and with things like kids, we think “I’ll think about that down the road.” What if we were just as intentional about our reproductive health as we are our careers? Modern Fertility is an easy way to test your fertility with an at-home test at a fraction of the cost. Go to ModernFertility.com/refined for $20 off your fertility test.



Real talk… After spending a whole pandemic in sweatpants, I decided to freshen up my wardrobe so I have been shopping and selling on Curtsy. I love it because they have the coolest pieces at thrift store prices. It has my favorite brands like Lululemon, Zara, and Levi’s at up to 70% off. If you want a sustainable way to get your favorite brands delivered to your door, download the Curtsy app and use promo code REFINED for 15% off your first order.

Mar 10, 2021
Work On Your ‘Ish: If You Don’t Heal Your Past, It Will Haunt You with Demetria Stallings
51:37

Demetria Stallings is the founder of Letters of the Heart, a nonprofit ministry with the mission of empowering individuals to understand their true identity and purpose. She is also a speaker, worship leader, artist, and purpose coach! We talk about how to identify if you’re stuck in the trauma of your past, how to begin the process of looking inward, and practical steps you can take right now so that your past doesn’t haunt you.

 

“Any journey starts by looking inward.” - Kat

 

The past will haunt you

 

  • “I have many times over recreated the pain of my past because I wasn’t willing to look at it.” - Kat

 

  • Demetria shares her experience of going through divorce 12 years ago and how it enabled fear to creep its way into her dating life.

 

  • “These patterns started happening when I would meet certain guys… it would be in this cycle of me not feeling worthy and so because I wasn’t worthy, I constantly was okay with behaviors that were not good for me.” - Demetria

 

 

How to identify if you’re stuck in the trauma of your past

  1. ALWAYS/NEVER statements.
  2. A Refusal to look inward.
  3. You spot it you got it.
  4. When the crime doesn’t fit the punishment.

 

“Make a choice. Just decide. What it's gonna be, who you're gonna be, how you're gonna do it. Just decide.” - Will Smith

 

How to begin the process of looking inward

  • Get curious.
  • Notice.
  • Invest. 
  • Be intentional.
  • Get support.
  • Go to God. Sit in stillness.

 

Practical steps you can take right now

  • Week: Decide what is going to change in your life.
  • Month: Put steps in place to move forward. Have a friend who will hold you accountable.
  • Year: Set a goal and establish a celebration.

 

“You have the strength to say yes. There is courage inside of you. You are not a cat. You are a lioness.” - Demetria

 

Resources



Did you know I’m releasing a book this April? It’s called Sexless in the City. I truly believe it will encourage and equip you to navigate faith, desire, intimacy, and relationships free from shame and fear and with a holistic and Biblical vision. I would be so grateful if you snagged a copy. You can pre-order it right now anywhere you buy books. When you pre-order, make sure you email social@therefinedwoman.com because I would love to send you some free goodies and resources as a thank you.

 

I really value the Patreon community that helps keep this podcast a possibility for me. So in addition to the other rewards, I started filming weekly videos exclusively for my supporters on Patreon. It’s basically like we’re just sitting on the couch having some real talk. I feel comfortable sharing more intimate details of my life over there since it’s a smaller community. So head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to get access to videos like “Doubting My Faith,” “My Fertility Journey,” “New Home Tour,” and so much more. 

Mar 03, 2021
Thank You For Rejecting Me with Kait Warman
55:50

This week I am talking with host of the Heart of Dating Podcast, and author of Thank You For Rejecting Me Kait Warman! Kait is a dear friend of mine and if you’ve been listening to the podcast for a while, you know that she has been on the podcast before talking about dropping the hanky and how to online date like a boss. Today, in honor of her book, we are opening up about some of our own personal experiences with rejection.

 

Rejection isn’t always romantic

  • It’s important to acknowledge all the ways you’re actually rejecting yourself. Self-hatred is probably appearing in your life in subtle ways.

 

  • “I will not stay, not ever again - in a room or conversation or relationship or institution that requires me to abandon myself.” - Glennon Doyle, Untamed

 

  • I reflect on an experience where I felt rejected in a friendship recently over quarantine.

 

  • “I believed the narratives that other people put on me and then I rejected myself.” - Kat

 

  • Kait reflects on a moment where she received grace and forgiveness from a guy, but she never offered herself that same grace and forgiveness.

 

Rejection is protection

  • Sometimes our biggest heartbreaks help us realize past traumas and hurts that we haven’t healed or even acknowledged.

 

  • “I need to not give scraps of love to myself. I need to give myself the full bucket of love.” - Kait

 

  • Kait reflects on a vision God gave her where she was going through the wilderness and found herself at a castle where she saw the guy she was dating. But God was calling her further and this man wasn’t leaving the castle. God was leading her to something more but she had to keep moving and growing.

 

  • “I’m so glad He didn’t give me what I wanted... There was so much He wanted me to adventure to beyond that.” - Kait

 

  • The “no”s hurt, even when they’re for your greater good.

 

Resources

  • You can keep up with Kait at heartofdating.com and on IG at @kaitness and @heartofdating.
  • Listen to Kait’s podcast, Heart of Dating, here.
  • Check out Kait’s other episodes of The Refined Collective here and here.
  • Order Kait’s brand new book, Thank You For Rejecting Me, here!
  • Check out Glennon Doyle’s book, Untamed, here.

 

Did you know I’m releasing a book this April? It’s called Sexless in the City. I truly believe it will encourage and equip you to navigate faith, desire, intimacy, and relationships free from shame and fear and with a holistic and Biblical vision. I would be so grateful if you snagged a copy. You can pre-order it right now anywhere you buy books. When you pre-order, make sure you email social@therefinedwoman.com because I would love to send you some free goodies and resources as a thank you.

 

I really value the Patreon community that helps keep this podcast a possibility for me. So in addition to the other rewards, I started filming weekly videos exclusively for my supporters on Patreon. It’s basically like we’re just sitting on the couch having some real talk. I feel comfortable sharing more intimate details of my life over there since it’s a smaller community. So head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to get access to videos like “Doubting My Faith,” “My Fertility Journey,” “New Home Tour,” and so much more. 

 

Real talk… After spending a whole pandemic in sweatpants, I decided to freshen up my wardrobe so I have been shopping and selling on Curtsy. I love it because they have the coolest pieces at thrift store prices. It has my favorite brands like Lululemon, Zara, and Levi’s at up to 70% off. If you want a sustainable way to get your favorite brands delivered to your door, download the Curtsy app and use promo code REFINED for 15% off your first order.

Feb 24, 2021
Is My Heart Deceitful Above All Things? A Conversation with AD Thomason
01:09:07

Adam “AD” Thomason is the author of Permission to Be Black: My Journey with Jay-Z and Jesus and the founder of I Am Red Rev and Red Rev Media. You know I love talking about Jay-Z and Jesus. We also talk about everything from blackness to healing past trauma to debunking unhealthy narratives from evangelical culture.

 

“I am writing this book to redefine Blackness and establish a new ‘Black Card,’ so to speak. Carriers of this car will no longer be ashamed of admitting that past traumas have hurt them….Trauma isn’t just war flashbacks. It’s having to raise your siblings because you were fatherless. It’s have to raise yourself because your mother was dealing with her own crises. It’s having a father who left you and your siblings at home while he roamed the streets looking for a fix. It’s being neglected because you were raised by a single parent who dealt with their trauma in silence.” -AD Thomason, Permission to Be Black

 

Permission to Be Black

  • AD reflects on how as a Black man, he felt he didn’t have the permission to heal from his past and process his humanity.
  • AD opens up about how the Black experience is intertwined with the idea of endurance and surviving. Has a survivor mentality kept you from experiencing abundance?

 

Living a Life of Endurance

 

  • “Marriage was the only thing that grounded me to say, ‘Adam, you can’t endure this thing. Either this thing is going to be about an imperfect joy you should have or this mentality of endurance is gonna crush you.’” -AD

 



The Problem with Avoidance

 

  • “Until we’re internally motivated, then we’re not going to be free from our addictions or the shoulds and the shouldn’ts.” -Kat

 

 

Confessions of an Ex-Evangelical:

  • AD’s last book was about leaving the Evangelical Church in order to find Jesus.
  • AD reflects on the trauma of having to shrink himself in every way in the church.

 

  • “In the end, they miss out on expanding their congregation’s mind to see the expression of God.” -AD
  • “I believe Blackness is an expression of God; it’s an expression of humanity… To shun it is to shun God.” -AD

 

 

Resources

 

To honor Black History Month, I am spending time this month talking about companies and organizations that I love that are run and founded by Black men and women. This week, I want to share about Elevate NY, a non-profit with a mission to build long-term life-changing relationships with the youth in the South Bronx, the most underserved congressional district in the nation. Go to ElevateNewYork.org to find out how you can get involved.


Whether it’s taking a walk around your neighborhood, running errands, or venturing out on your own, you always want to feel safe. With Birdie, you can keep doing what you love with added peace of mind. Birdie is a personal safety alarm that is easy to carry and simple to use. You can get 15% off your first purchase when you go to ShesBirdie.com/refined.

Feb 17, 2021
Is Chivalry Dead?
47:31

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

As someone who speaks openly about dating, I get a lot of people sliding into my DMs either asking where all of the single Godly guys are or complaining that chivalry is dead. So I am going to do a deep dive on the topic.

Full disclosure: this episode was supposed to be with a guest, but about an hour before our scheduled interview the guest reached out and explained that they felt our messages were out of alignment. I wanted to share this with you because I believe that The Refined Collective is a place where we don’t have to agree. We aren’t meant to live in an echo chamber. We can build bridges with people who don’t believe the things we believe. It’s healthy and okay to not have the same views on everything. You are welcome here regardless of what you do or do not believe. I have open arms for you.

 

What comes to mind when you think of chivalry?

  • Jane Austen (I’m partial to the Keira Knightley Pride & Prejudice)
  • Dropping the hanky, whether that means literally dropping the hanky or swooning (anyone else watching Bridgerton on Netflix?) 
  • Dropping the hanky looks different in 2021, but there are still ways to give a guy the green light to pursue you.
  • Back to Bridgerton, women (teenage girls, really) were held to a different standard than the men when it came to marriage (and pretty much everything else too).

 

Things to consider:

  • When was the last time you experienced chivalry?
  • As women, are we giving mixed messages?

 

How can we encourage chivalry 

  1. Invitation vs. Demand.
  2. Verbal affirmation.
  3. Thank you goes a long way.
  4. Ask for support.
  5. Lead with vulnerability.

 

Resources

  • Check out the episode I did with Kait Warman all about dropping the hanky here.
  • Are you interested in an Ask Kat series on the podcast? Email questions you want Kat to answer on air to social@therefinedwoman.com. The questions can be about anything and everything!

 

I was tired of hearing male pastors preach about waiting until marriage for sex when they had gotten married in their early 20s and had no idea what it was really like to date in today’s culture! I wanted to hear from someone in my shoes— so I wrote a book! It’s called Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex and it’s coming out in April 2021! Head over to bit.ly/kat-sexless to pre-order now! Then email social@therefinedwoman.com so I can send you some free resources as a thank you!

 

To honor Black History Month, I am spending time this month talking about companies and organizations that I love that are run and founded by Black men and women. This week, I want to share about the Equal Justice Initiative, a private nonprofit organization that provides legal representation to people who have been illegally convicted, unfairly sentenced, or abused in state jails and prisons. They challenge the death penalty and excessive punishment and provide re-entry assistance to formerly incarcerated people. Go to EJI.org to find out how you can get involved.

 

For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… how to answer the question “why are you still single?” How to know if your standards are too high. And an update on my dating life. YUP! There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

Feb 10, 2021
Are We Weaponizing Scripture to Silence Women? with Tiffany Bluhm
54:29

Friendly warning: We will be talking about delicate topics today so if you have little ears around you, maybe pop in those headphones or give it a listen when you have some alone time!

 

I have the honor of talking with Tiffany Bluhm this week (her second time on the podcast— listen to our conversation about consent here) and we are doing a deep dive into some real talk this week. We’re discussing what we’ve been taught about our roles as women, both in culture AND in the church. Specifically, Ephesians 5 and how it has been taken out of context and weaponized to silence women.

 

What happens when women hold power?

 

  • “When women are in power, everyone wins— not just women.”
  • “The patriarchy has no roots in the gospel… not one. But we’ve weaponized both the old and new testament to convince us otherwise.”

 

  • Tiffany and I both share our experiences and what we’ve been taught by the church about our roles as women.



The chasm between the God of the bible and the church narratives

  • Moments when women are empowered in the Bible
    • Solomon’s wife in the Song of Songs
    • Queen Esther in the Old Testament
    • Ruth proposing to Boaz
    • Proverbs 31
    • Lydia in the New Testament
  • Unfortunately, there are also moments of the patriarchy at its peak
    • Tamar or Hagar in the Old Testament

 

The sexualization of women

 

  • “The most neglected person in America is the black woman.” - Malcolm X

 

  • Women are sexualized from an alarmingly young age. 
    • “Only girls’ fashions urge body consciousness at the very youngest ages. . . . Preschoolers worship Disney princesses, characters whose eyes are larger than their waists. No one is trying to convince eleven-year-old boys to wear itty-bitty booty shorts or bare their bellies in the middle of winter. . . . The pressure on young women to reduce their worth to their bodies and to see those bodies as a collection of parts that exist for others’ pleasure” and “to continuously monitor their appearance” - Peggy Orenstein, Girls and Sex
  • Most girls will be sexually harassed by the time they are in middle school.

 

Ephesians 5:21-5:33

  • This scripture passage has been weaponized to oppress women.

 

  • “It’s dangerous to take things out of context.”

 

  • Women were treated as property in that time— Paul was quoting the cultural expectations for that time.
  • It’s important to note that it also mentions that men should lay down their lives for her. To love her. That was radical.
  • When we contextualize it, Ephesians 5 is an invitation for mutual love and support.

 

  • “Look what can happen when women and men work together, when you really see each other as equals. Look at the world you can create together… What if we could flourish together?”

 

 

Resources

  • Keep up with Tiffany at TiffanyBluhm.com and on IG at @tiffanybluhm
  • Pre-order Tiffany’s book, Prey Tell: Why We Silence Women Who Tell the Truth and How Everyone Can Speak Up, here.
  • Check out Tiffany’s previous books, Never Alone and She Dreams.
  • Listen to the podcast Tiffany co-hosts with Ashley Abercrombie, Why Tho?
  • Check out Tiffany’s reel we chat about here.
  • Check out Tiffany’s first episode of The Refined Collective here.

 

To honor Black History Month, I am spending time this month talking about companies and organizations that I love that are run and founded by Black men and women. This week, I want to share about Elevate NY, a non-profit with a mission to build long-term life-changing relationships with the youth in the South Bronx, the most underserved congressional district in the nation. Go to ElevateNewYork.org to find out how you can get involved.

 

For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… how to answer the question “why are you still single?” How to know if your standards are too high. And an update on my dating life. YUP! There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!


We invest large amounts of money into our careers. But with things like love, we think “It’ll happen when it happens,” and with things like kids, we think “I’ll think about that down the road.” What if we were just as intentional about our reproductive health as we are our careers? Modern Fertility is an easy way to test your fertility with an at-home test at a fraction of the cost. Go to ModernFertility.com/refined for $20 off your fertility test.

Feb 03, 2021
BONUS: The Hard Truth About Closure with Hannah Brencher
49:24

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Hannah Brencher is the author of Fighting Forward, a TED speaker, and the founder of The World Needs More Love Letters. Also… she was named as one of the White House’s “Women Working to Do Good.” Major! She shares the story of how she met her husband and some dating stories that will help you get creative. Plus, she helps us unpack some major questions to understand where we want to be in 5 years and how we can actually get there.

 

Get creative with online dating

  • We all want to have a rom-com meet cute, but we have to be open to the other possibilities. 

 

  • “We become so attached to a Hollywood version of love and then we put spiritual language around it…”

 

  • We’re living in a hookup culture where people have forgotten what real dating looks like without ghosting.
  • Remove the pressure from dating: date just to learn how to date if you need to.

 

Finishing strong

 

  • “I don’t think all closure comes in the form of meeting up in a coffee shop and talking your feelings to death. If I’m always waiting on that other person to give me what I want... that’s not closure; that’s me still being on the hook. We can give ourselves closure and we should.”

 

  • Ask yourself why you’re looking for closure. Are you texting him hoping he’ll respond or because you actually will feel better having communicated it?

 

What do you want your life to look like 5 years from now?

  • Is there a chasm between what you say you want and how you are living?

 

  • “You built this life that you’re living right now. You’re not the victim in your life.”

 

  • Ask yourself:
    • What patterns and behaviors aren’t working for you?
    • How can you actively shift them to live differently?
    • Is the way you’re spending your time and resources reflecting your priorities?
    • Start small and find little ways to shift your priorities. When someone comes along, you’ll be prepared for that.

 

Resources

 

I recently launched a new resource on my shop! I get hundreds of questions every day over DMs asking for personal advice or coaching. It’s so hard to keep up with and I just can’t commit to answering all of them. But I know an hour long coaching call is a big financial commitment. So now you can ask a coaching question and get an audio message response from me! Go to therefinedwoman.com/shop to check it out.


I was tired of hearing male pastors preach about waiting until marriage for sex when they had gotten married in their early 20s and had no idea what it was really like to date in today’s culture! I wanted to hear from someone in my shoes— so I wrote a book! It’s called Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex and it’s coming out in April 2021! Head over to bit.ly/kat-sexless to pre-order now! AND email social@therefinedwoman.com with a copy of your receipt so I can make sure you get some surprise goodies.

Jan 28, 2021
Just Because You Know A Story By Heart, Doesn’t Mean It’s True with Ruthie Lindsey
01:02:17

A few years ago, author Ruthie Lindsey and I spoke at the same conference. I only knew her from online, but I remember hearing her story that day and being gutted by the pain and loss that she has experienced in her life. You can read about her experience in her book, There I Am. (I read it in two days and cannot recommend it enough.) During this conversation, we dive into some deep topics: 

What if you’re in a leadership position, but don’t know if you believe anymore?

What does it mean to struggle with your faith? 

What does it mean to be a people pleaser? 

What does it mean to be a Christian in today’s culture? 

How do we become an ally in the Black Lives Matter Movement?

 

Who am I… really?

  • I share how at 35, I feel like I’m just starting to see who I truly am and not trying to fit into a version of myself that I thought I should be.
  • Ruthie shares how she saw her brother get in trouble a lot when she was little and so she made a conscious decision to always please others.

 

  • “I found so much value and worth in what anyone outside of me thought of me.”

 

  • This caused her to feel disconnected and unable to process hard things. 

 

  • “I wasn’t allowed to show anger or hurt or rage or disappointment. Those things were not becoming of a young Christian sweet girl. I pushed all that stuff down.”

 

 

Struggling in faith… 

  • Ruthie reflects on the moments she felt abandoned by her faith and recognizes that she was surrounded by love in those moments.

 

  • “All the traumatic things are crucial ingredients to get there.”

 

  • I share how I thought I was unworthy and broken without Jesus. It was only in the last 6 or 7 years that I have given myself permission to learn more about God. God is not going to be threatened by my doubts.

 

  • “Don’t just take everything that these preachers have given to you. Go within. Everything is about calling us home.”

 

  • God invites us to look inward and question things.

 

  • “You are so good and worthy and inherently divinely needed on this planet. You have a medicine that no one else here can give but you and that all comes from going within.”

 

 

“I feel like our healing journey, our awakening journey, is way more of an unlearning and a remembering. It’s an uncovering of what’s always been there. We don’t need to try and become someone we’re not, it’s remembering who we’ve always been.”

 

How to be a true ally…

  • Before you can love and see another person, you have to love and see yourself. So do the inner work.

 

  • “The 13th amendment was passed a long time ago and it didn’t change people’s hearts… Going inward, doing this unlearning… that’s what changes our hearts. Until everyone is seen as equal, our work isn’t done.”

 

  • Ruthie talks about and reflects on moments when she has been complicit and recognizes where she is growing in this journey moving forward.

 

  • “I feel a fire in me to do better.”

 

 

Resources

 

For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… how to answer the question “why are you still single?” How to know if your standards are too high. And an update on my dating life. YUP! There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

 

I was tired of hearing male pastors preach about waiting until marriage for sex when they had gotten married in their early 20s and had no idea what it was really like to date in today’s culture! I wanted to hear from someone in my shoes— so I wrote a book! It’s called Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex and it’s coming out in April 2021! Head over to bit.ly/kat-sexless to pre-order now!

Jan 26, 2021
BONUS: Want Kids One Day? A Conversation with Afton Vechery of Modern Fertility
59:41

Afton Vechery is the founder and CEO of Modern Fertility. If you’ve been around for a while, you know we’ve talked about fertility a few times on the podcast. If you’re thinking “I’m not trying to have kids yet,” “I’m focusing on my career right now,” or “I don’t even know if I want to have kids,” you should still care about your reproductive health! And Afton is here to help break it down for you!

 

Reasons to track your cycle:

  1. If you’re trying to get pregnant
  2. If you have irregular cycles
  3. If you’re getting off of birth control
  4. So you can understand your unique cycle
  5. To get to know + be connected to your body 
  6. Knowledge is power!!

 

The Fertility Information Gap

 

  • “It was so empowering… Women were demanding more information about their bodies so they could make the decisions that were right for them.”

 

  • Most of the information out there is about preventing pregnancy and is very fear-based— there was a gap in fertility information so Modern Fertility filled that space.
  • Fertility just isn’t a priority until we start having issues conceiving. 
  • Egg-freezing, IVF, hormonal birth control and kids may not be for everyone, but information is for everyone.

 

AMH Testing 101

  • I share my own AMH test level results that were shocking to me.
  • How often should you test your AMH? 1-2x a year
  • AMH levels remain consistent throughout the cycle, but FSH (follicle stimulating hormones) + estradiol change throughout your cycle. Because of this, you should use the test on day 3 of your cycle.

 

  • “We wanted to take these tests that are largely confined to infertility clinics and make them mainstream.”

 

 

3 Ways to jumpstart your fertility journey:

  1. BE OPEN: Be willing to look into this + start talking and researching fertility. “This is an area of our health that’s changing.”
  2. Get up to speed with the basics.
  3. Be proactive vs. reactive.

 

“Have a conversation about fertility. Fertility is a part of reproductive health and reproductive health is just a part of our general health.”

 

Resources

I was tired of hearing male pastors preach about waiting until marriage for sex when they had gotten married in their early 20s and had no idea what it was really like to date in today’s culture! I wanted to hear from someone in my shoes— so I wrote a book! It’s called Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex and it’s coming out in April 2021! Head over to bit.ly/kat-sexless to pre-order now!


For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… how to answer the question “why are you still single?” How to know if your standards are too high. And an update on my dating life. YUP! There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

A special thanks to the Patreon community! Especially our new supporters: Andra, William E, Cassidy S, Liliana R, Trisha R, Tate B, Katie E, and Brittany A. We are so so grateful for you!

Jan 21, 2021
Choosing Love is Worth the Risk with Jasmine Star
48:41

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

If you’ve been listening to The Refined Collective for a long time, you’ll remember that this week’s guest is actually a repeat guest! Jasmine Star was on the podcast back on episode 009: Chasing Your Why: Career Pivots for the Creative Entrepreneur. This time, we’re talking about Jasmine’s decade-long journey to adopting her daughter.

 

Adoption: Shifting perspectives

  • Jasmine and her husband JD were in very different spots when they began their adoption journey. 
  • Jasmine reflects on the moment she and her husband became involved with the foster system.
  • You can volunteer with communities like National Angels and CASA to show children in the foster system that they are loved.
  • They ultimately adopted through a private adoption facilitated by lawyers.

 

  • “There are so many children who just need love and there’s people who are kind good souls who are saying ‘Well, you’re here with us. We’re going to love you.’”

 

 

The fears after adoption

 

  • “Am I brave enough to be vulnerable to love somebody who may look at me in the face and say ‘you are not my mom’ or ‘I don’t love you.’”

 

  • It’s a microcosm of loving in general: to open yourself up to love and unbelievable joy, you have to be open to the fear and potential heartache.



Resources

 

For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… how to answer the question “why are you still single?” How to know if your standards are too high. And an update on my dating life. YUP! There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

 

We’re told that we should pray for our future husbands— it makes sense, right? The problem is: nobody ever teaches us how. My friend Stephanie May Wilson created the Every Single Moment Prayer Journal to help with exactly that. It is 100 powerful guided prayers and prompts to help you savor the present and prepare for the future. Go to bit.ly/kat-singlemoment and use code KAT for 15% off your order.

Jan 19, 2021
Single + Broke: How to Set Yourself Up for Financial Success Today with Anthony O’Neal
01:01:58

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Anthony O’Neal is a financial expert who has served Ramsay Solutions since 2015. I was on his YouTube show, “The Table,” back in 2020, which you can check out here! I am so thrilled to have Anthony on the podcast and so excited to be talking about money. We talk about money and singleness, debt, mindset, and the narratives we grew up believing about money. 

 

Plus: What’s the BEST way to get out of debt? And how can you save and grow money once you’re out of debt?

 

$30K in Debt + Lookin’ for a Financial Savior

  • A few years ago, I was in $30K debt and praying for a financially stable man. 
  • A deal breaker for me was if a guy was in debt. But THERE I was rolling in debt. 
  • I wasn’t holding myself to the same standard of what I was looking for in a partner. So I committed to getting out of debt.
  • Don’t look for someone with no debt, look for someone who is in the same healthy money mindset.

 

3 Things You Can Do to Start a Path Towards Freedom

 

  • “Speak what you seek until you see what you spoke.” 
  • Say “I want to be debt free” every morning.

 

  • Stop borrowing money. 
    • If you’re tired of this lifestyle, do something about it.
  • Get a clear vision. 
    • Why do you want to be out of debt?
  • Debt snowball method at daveramsey.com/hope. 
    • A step by step process on how to get out of debt, create an emergency fund, and start investing.

 

The #1 Asset You Have Is Your Mindset 

  • What are you looking for by spending money? What are you looking for it to satisfy in you?
  • Avoid being the “I’m gonna” person and actually do it.

 

Wanna Be Out of Debt by the End of 2021?

  • Yearly vision: getting out of debt by the end of 2021.
  • Break that down into monthly goals.
  • Breath that down even further into daily habits. 
  • Every day contributes to your ultimate vision.

 

Out of Debt… What Next?

  • The insecurity hits: “Oh no, I don’t have any savings.”
  • Emergency Fund
    • In case of emergencies, you have this reserve.
    • If you live in an expensive city, save three months of expenses. 
    • Let the money sit there
  • Invest money
    • Talk to a financial advisor if you can (check out anthonyoneal.com/experts for a list of people who have been vetted by Anthony and Dave Ramsey).
    • Save into a 401k.
    • Let the money grow.

 

Fast Math

  • If you make 5k a month, your rent/mortgage shouldn’t be more than 25% of your take home pay.
  • With a rent/mortgage of $1,250 and living expenses totaling $750, that makes $2,000. You should have $6,000 in your savings.

 

Resources

 

I wrote a book! It’s called Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex and it’s coming out in April 2021! I would love to keep you updated on all things book related (from book to to book launch team, to future events God willing)! Head to bit.ly/trw-book to get all the info.

 

We’re told that we should pray for our future husbands— it makes sense, right? The problem is: nobody ever teaches us how. My friend Stephanie May Wilson created the Every Single Moment Prayer Journal to help with exactly that. It is 100 powerful guided prayers and prompts to help you savor the present and prepare for the future. Go to bit.ly/kat-singlemoment and use code KAT for 15% off your order.

Jan 13, 2021
2020 Reflections: Looking Back to Move Forward
39:46

I’ve been putting off this episode because I’ve wanted to create something exciting + inspiring as we head into a new year. But if I’m being honest, I’m exhausted and burnt out. I feel like I crawled to the finish line of 2020. In that, as much as I want to move forward and forget about 2020, I can’t. Before we can move on to a new year, before we can cast new vision, we have to pause, and LOOK BACKWARDS BEFORE MOVING FORWARD.

 

The Class

  • The beginning of a path towards growth + breakthrough begins when we leave our comfort zone—and leaving our comfort zone is UNCOMFORTABLE. 
  • When all I want to do is quit (+ sometimes I do)—it never fails—I always quit within the last few beats + it makes me wonder in what other areas of my life do I almost get to the finish line + want to sit down? And sometimes I don’t and surprise myself at how strong I am. 

 

2020 Reflection Questions:

  1. What does discomfort teach you?
  2. What did 2020 teach you?
  3. What did this global interruption bring up for you personally?
  4. What did the discomfort show you about yourself?
  5. What are you like in conflict?
  6. How do you respond when things don’t go your way?
  7. What lessons could you not have learned about who you are if you didn’t go through 2020? What is the one lesson going into 2021 that you want to take with you?

 

My lessons from 2020:

  • I am not in control. I never was. A big theme for me this year is this: trust and surrender. Especially in dating. (You can listen to my episode all about those lessons here.)
  • I can listen to my body. My body has been screaming at me for a long long time, and I made a drastic change recently when I heard a whisper from God…”When are you going to start listening? Your body is speaking truth to you.” And so I left my home of 7 years and moved out of New York.
  • Nobody can tell me how long my grieving process should be. I walked through one of the most painful grieving processes of my life in 2020. It was hard to balance professional commitments with the grief of personal loss.

 

“For in grief nothing "stays put." One keeps on emerging from a phase, but it always recurs. Round and round. Everything repeats. Am I going in circles, or dare I hope I am on a spiral?

 

But if a spiral, am I going up or down it?

 

How often -- will it be for always? -- how often will the vast emptiness astonish me like a complete novelty and make me say, "I never realized my loss till this moment"? The same leg is cut off time after time.” 

- C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed

 

Will it be for always?

 

I remembered the squats from The Class. Everything is temporary. Discomfort, frustration, and pain aren’t the end. 

 

God is committed to making all things new. And that means all the things.

 

My tattoo

  • “Selah” // inhale se- exhale lah
  • It’s a Hebrew word used in the poetry book of the psalms in the old testament of the Bible. 
  • It reminds me of a yoga class—the savasana: the final resting pose. What’s rest got to do with working out + getting stronger? Perhaps everything. Perhaps the growth happens in the being. In the being still and the surrender. 
  • The psalmist says, ‘Be still and know that I am God’—not DO MORE + TO PROVE MORE + EARN MY LOVE…the invitation is to be.
  • But the surrender feels uncomfortable. It’s in the being + in the surrender that our hearts have the space to process, to feel, to grieve.

 

All I want to do is move on from last year and have 2020 be the year that must not be named. But 2020 did happen. The entire world shutdown + it sucked— it sucks—and I walked through some of the deepest heartaches of my life this past summer…and I’ve cried until there were no tears left—and somehow another wave would come. I’ve grieved deeply, processed…and now I'm ready for it to be over. I'm ready for the breakthrough…no more breaking please—I'm ready for the breakthrough. But I wonder if part of the breakthrough is having the courage to be in it, sit in it, feel all the feels—like an ocean wave—let it wash over us, look back through it, dissect it, ask it—what are you trying to teach me? Before we move on, what if we stayed a little while longer + squeezed out all the learning that it has for us? 

 

So maybe don’t rush out of this place.

trusting that it won’t last forever + that God is making all things new + that the growth begins when we step into the discomfort + we must move through it to the other side…can you pause?

Can you be?

Can you be still.

Can you be still and know.

Can you be still and know that God is God?

Breathe into it.

 


Spend some time looking back before moving forward.

Your breakthrough is coming—but first there must be a breaking + it’s not often we get to experience such a collective breaking. But it makes me hopeful that God wants to do something new in you, in me, in them, in us.

 

Here’s to 2021.

 

Resources

 

For $5/month, you can get access to exclusive video content for Patreon subscribers. Like… how to answer the question “why are you still single?” How to know if your standards are too high. And an update on my dating life. YUP! There will be a new video every week just for Patreon subscribers. Don’t miss out! Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to learn more and sign up!

 

I was tired of hearing male pastors preach about waiting until marriage for sex when they had gotten married in their early 20s and had no idea what it was really like to date in today’s culture! I wanted to hear from someone in my shoes— so I wrote a book! It’s called Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex and it’s coming out in April 2021! Head over to bit.ly/kat-sexless to pre-order now!

Jan 06, 2021
FaceTime Dates, Politics, + Double Standards: How 2020 Has Forever Changed Dating
59:10

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

2020 has changed… everything. On all levels. But what I want to focus on in this episode is how dating has changed. You may have found that dating this year has maybe been really frustrating for you or really life-changing and beautiful. Either way, it is teaching some lessons we can carry into 2021 and I’m here for it.

 

  1. Socially-distanced dating
  • Did you ever think you’d consider FaceTime dates with a complete stranger? Hinge and Bumble are actively telling their users to have video calls.
  • You can resist the change or you can embrace it.
  • Honesty hour: they haven’t worked all that well for me. BUT it CAN! I have a friend who met a guy pre-quarantine, had FaceTime dates then socially distanced dates, and now 8 months later THEY’RE MARRIED!
  • There’s an opportunity here to take things slow. You can get to know a person outside of the physical. 

 

  1. Are Politics a Deal Breaker?
  • It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of Trump. If you like and voted for Trump, hear me,  I do not hate you. In fact, I think it’s important we build bridges of connection. However, if I meet a man who thinks Trump is an incredible man of honor? Then our values are out of alignment and what is important to us does not match up. And that is important to me in a relationship.

 

  1. I can trust my gut
  • My whole life, I was taught not to trust myself. By family, by college athletic trainers, by the church, I was told I’m dramatic, I should ignore what my body is telling me, and my heart is deceitful. 
  • I’ve learned that I do have discernment. My body is good and my intuition speaks to me.
  • Ephesians 2:10 “poiema” // We are the poetry of God. God doesn’t make bad things.
  • How does this relate to dating? If there are no big red flags in dating, I think it’s smart to give a guy a chance for three dates. It takes time to get to know a person! BUT I do think it’s important to trust your gut. There’s a balance here: it doesn’t have to be “either or.” It can be a “both and.” Be gracious and open, but take yellow flags into consideration.

 

  1. Being Christian isn’t enough
  • Sharing faith still really matters to me, but now more than ever I recognize that it’s not the only thing that matters to me.
  • I had an experience long distance dating a guy early this year and multiple times I brought up racial reconciliation and it was clearly not something that mattered to him. I also learned that gay people make him uncomfortable. I couldn’t understand how he could love God and not advocate for Black people and support the LGBTQIA community.
  • The love of God isn’t dependent on whether or not you have heterosexual attraction.

 

  1. Growth Mindset
  • Confronted with an area of growth, what is your response? Is it defensiveness or humility?
  • Instead of, “You’re wrong, I’m right.” It should be “I haven’t thought of it that way, I’d love to learn more.”

 

  1. Show don’t tell
  • Have you ever been with a guy who says all the right things? All the things you wanted to hear? Really pay attention to that.
  • Someone can say the right things and not follow through, and really time will tell.
  • Listen to what a guy says, not what you want him to say. If he says “I’m not ready for a relationship,” you could think “Wow, he’s so vulnerable,” but really that’s a red flag.

 

  1. Humor is non-negotiable
  • I just about broke the internet with this IG post back in October. But I stand by this.
  • Life is HARD! And we don’t need to be with a stand-up comedian, but life is messy and I need a guy who is a friend that I can laugh with.
  • Physical attraction is important, but sex isn’t 24/7. Who do I want to be with when we’re going through the hard moments, the boring moments, the everyday moments?

 

  1. Drop the double standards
  • In that same IG post, I said you should be open to dating a guy who is shorter than you. And you all had a LOT of thoughts about it.
  • We are always so upset when a guy doesn’t want to date us based on looks, but we’re doing the same thing by saying we won’t date a short guy.
  • Be willing for love to look differently than you expected for yourself.
  • If we have a standard for a guy, let’s live by that same standard.

 

  1. Trust and surrender
  • I’m 35… I want to have kids yesterday. I’m ready to settle down. I thought this was my year for love.
  • I can do all the “right” things, be clear about my vision, be open to love, and be putting myself out there…. And life can happen.
  • What I’ve really learned was that I can trust and surrender because God has my best.

 

How has 2020 changed dating for you? I really want to hear! I love a good round number and need a 10th point;) So let me know on social media @therefinedwoman. Thank you for all the listens, downloads, messages, comments, and feedback this year. We are so grateful for this amazing community!

 

Resources

 

We’re told that we should pray for our future husbands— it makes sense, right? The problem is: nobody ever teaches us how. My friend Stephanie May Wilson created the Every Single Moment Prayer Journal to help with exactly that. It is 100 powerful guided prayers and prompts to help you savor the present and prepare for the future. Go to bit.ly/kat-singlemoment and use code KAT for 15% off your order.

Dec 16, 2020
Cheating, Ghosting, Finances + Sex with Shaun Galanos
01:09:46

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

I have been looking forward to interviewing this guest ever since the Tik Tok algorithm graced me with his videos. I am obsessed. Shaun Galanos is a love coach and he is very matter of fact about the dating questions he receives. He answers questions with clarity and compassion. So together, we collected some of your top dating questions and answered them for you! From ghosting to cheating to finances, we cover some pretty massive questions.

 

 

“Why do men ghost? Especially if the man asked for my number and texted me.”

  • They don’t care
  • They don’t want to have an uncomfortable conversation with you
  • That’s all they know how to do
  • They want to ghost you before you ghost them
  • They want to hurt you/make you sad
  • They don’t want to hurt your feelings
  • They feel guilty

 

“How do I manage finances in relationships when we have different standards of spending habits?”

  • Values around money and debt are important— you should share those values.
  • The money conversation can be a turnoff or red flag for someone if you bring it up early on.

 

“How do you know if it’s the right person, just the wrong time?”

  • If what you’re really asking is:
    • “Am I making the right choice? Is there better?” Stop overthinking!
    • “I’ve been rejected, but should I just wait for them?” Move on! “If someone says no, take it as a no, believe them, and let the universe sort it out on the back end.”

 

“Can I build a relationship with someone I used to cheat with?”

  • You can do anything you want in life, but ask yourself “Is this good for me?”
  • There are so many ways to view a situation like this, some are fantasies and some are more riddled with problems.
  • If it’s something you really want to pursue, go to counseling with that person to work on how you can make this relationship better.

 

“Be honest, have you ever decided not to date a girl because of her ethnicity?”

  • Neither of us have not dated someone because of their ethnicity.
  • I share what I’ve noticed of my own behavior on dating apps when it comes to race and how I’ve been reflecting on that and learning what has influenced that behavior.

 

“How can I make the first move without being too forward/intimidating as a woman?”

  • “Just do it. Stop sitting on the sidelines hoping that he notices you and just do it.”
  • It’s time to move on from the whole “men are hunters and women are prey” analogy, because guess what? Hunters don’t woo their prey!
  • Ask yourself what’s holding you back— are you afraid of asking because you’re afraid of the answer?

 

“How do you date in 2020 when you really hate internet dating?”

  • Ask yourself: what did people do before online dating became a thing?
  • Don’t look down on the idea of being set-up!
  • Get used to saying hi to strangers.

 

“How can I get context when it’s basically over text due to distance?”

  • So I guess we’ve all just forgotten about phone calls, huh? Pick up the phone! You can get so much more context in a conversation when you hear their voice.
  • I know a lot of us feel safer over text, but it’s so incomplete.
  • Always make sure the big conversations are done over the phone or in person.

 

“I like masturbation, but I’m worried I’m not going to like sex when I get married.”

  • Focus on masturbation now and worry about sex later. If you understand your own pleasure, you are setting yourself up for some really positive experiences with your partner.
  • “Start talking about sex…so that it becomes a natural part of your relationship.”
  • The book Slow Sex by Diana Richardson explores the idea that you should focus on your own pleasure and ask for what you want.
  • ***None of this is possible without communication!****

 

“You will get more information when you ask for the thing that you want.”

 

Resources

 

I was tired of hearing male pastors preach about waiting until marriage for sex when they had gotten married in their early 20s and had no idea what it was really like to date in today’s culture! I wanted to hear from someone in my shoes— so I wrote a book! It’s called Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex and it’s coming out in April 2021! Head over to bit.ly/kat-sexless to pre-order now!

 

We’re told that we should pray for our future husbands— it makes sense, right? The problem is: nobody ever teaches us how. My friend Stephanie May Wilson created the Every Single Moment Prayer Journal to help with exactly that. It is 100 powerful guided prayers and prompts to help you savor the present and prepare for the future. Go to bit.ly/kat-singlemoment and use code KAT for 15% off your order.

Dec 09, 2020
That’s What He Said: Sexual Formation + Cultivating Desire with Jon Tyson
56:28

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Welcome back to the That’s What He Said series, where I ask men all the questions you’re DYING to know. Last week, Tim Timberlake shared some practical tips for single women to prepare for marriage, because marriage is sacrifice, y’all— are you setting yourself up for success in singleness? Listen to that episode here if you missed it

 

This week, I’m wrapping up the That’s What He Said series that has carried us through this fall with a conversation I had with Church of the City in New York pastor Jon Tyson a few years ago. He is also the author of Beautiful Resistance and The Burden is Light, husband and father. This entire series has been all about asking men from all over the U.S. both married, single, dating, and everywhere in-between your top dating and relationship questions.

 

But we can’t talk about dating without talking about sex, desire, and sexuality. And we can’t talk about any of those things without talking about God--the Creator of all of it (What better way to end the series right?).

 

The majority of church conversations around sex are about do’s and don’ts rather than formation and theology, so Jon and I talk all about how to have a nuanced Biblical view of sex and desire.

 

Hook-up Culture + Porn

  • So many people are disillusioned with hookup culture and with porn. When it comes to the church, most people who attend are single and frustrated.
  • “People are wrestling profoundly with the sense of being left out, where they look at people in the world who seem to be doing whatever they want and having some level of fun.”

 

How Did We Get Here?

  • One thing that has transformed everything in the sexual culture we live in is technology.
  • Porn is available to everyone, giving the option to get sexual satisfaction without human connection. But human connection is crucial to the sexual experience.
  • What has the church’s response to this been? Moral standards and will power will give you holiness. But this approach does not work.

 

Sexual Formation

  • When it comes to spiritual formation, we’re always asking ourselves: “Who am I becoming by what I am doing?”
  • Apply this same concept to your sexuality. “It’s staggering how much harm and how much blessing can come from sexuality.”
  • Jon asks why we as a society date people we know we don’t actually like. Is it because we lack a vision for our love life?

 

The 4 Points of Christian Sexuality

  1. Sex points beyond itself.
  2. Holistic integration.
  3. Self-control strengthens our vision.
  4. It’s a witness to the world.

 

Further Reading

 

Resources

 

We’ve been diving into some pretty big conversations around dating and what it’s like being single in today’s culture. Maybe you feel uncomfortable connecting with me on IG in a public way, so I created a private Facebook community for single ladies. (P.S. I’m always giving dating advice over there!) Head over to bit.ly/trw-singleladies to join this community of women lifting each other up!

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!

Dec 02, 2020
That’s What He Said: Marriage Prep 101: Sacrifice, Intentionality + Growth with Tim Timberlake
52:18

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Welcome back to the That’s What He Said series, where I ask men all the questions you’re DYING to know. Last week, Ben Stuart answered the most asked question in the Christian single lady community: where are all of the single Godly men? His answer is thoughtful, encouraging, and challenging. Listen here if you missed it.

 

This week, I’m talking with pastor Tim Timberlake. He is the pastor of Christian Faith Center in North Carolina. He’s been married to wife Jen for over 5 years and together they have the cutest son, Maxwell Ace Timberlake. He considers himself a Christian first, husband second, father third, and pastor fourth. In this conversation from the archives, we talk about how you can grow with a person in marriage, what your “list” of perfect qualities should look like, and how we can practice sacrifice as single women. Because guess what? Marriage requires sacrifice!

 

How do you grow together in marriage?

  • Tim shares his experience as a divorced man who went on to find the love of his life.
  • “You can absolutely be married to God’s perfect choice, but if both people aren’t pursuing God, then that quickly changes.”
  • Communication can help us to grow together, because change is inevitable.
  • “We don’t get let down by what happens to us, we get let down by what we expected not to happen to us.”

 

3 things to put on your list

  1. Common Ground.
  2. Shared Faith.
  3. Physical attraction!

 

How can we prep for marriage as single people?

  • Love is a choice and there is no other relationship that sets us up for the sacrifices and commitment through the tough times when we are in seasons of singleness.
  • He notes that whenever he finds himself being short with the people he loves, he can pinpoint it to not spending enough time with God.
  • “I want this person to win more than I want to win in this relationship.”

 

Lightning round

  • Can guys tell when a woman likes her? ABSOLUTELY! But misreads do happen.
  • Does attraction have to be there from the start? Attraction will constantly evolve.
  • Which do you value more—respect or love? Respect and honor go hand in hand. Honor is impossible without love. There has to be action behind it.
  • How do I know if he likes me? If he makes sacrifices for you, he’s serious about you. There’s a distinction to be made between want (convenience) and like.

 

“It takes time to make something that is good. Anything that comes into your life prematurely, arrives too small. Be patient. Know that the wait will be worth it. God has His perfect plan for your life that He is building up for you.”

 

Resources

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!

 

We’ve been diving into some pretty big conversations around dating and what it’s like being single in today’s culture. Maybe you feel uncomfortable connecting with me on IG in a public way, so I created a private Facebook community for single ladies. (P.S. I’m always giving dating advice over there!) Head over to bit.ly/trw-singleladies to join this community of women lifting each other up!

Nov 24, 2020
That’s What He Said: Where Are All the Single Godly Men? With Ben Stuart
50:59

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Welcome back to the That’s What He Said series, where I ask men all the questions you’re DYING to know. Last week, we took a short break with the series so I could address the sex scandals that have been exposed recently in the evangelical church. It’s a hard conversation, but it’s one we need to be having. You can take a listen here.

 

This week, I’m sharing the conversation I had with Ben Stuart a while back. He is the pastor of Passion City Church DC, but before that he ran a college and singles ministry. Basically, he has worked with a lot of young single Christians. DC is one of the loneliest cities in America and people longing for connection come to his church to find it. We do a deep dive into the question “Where are all of the single Godly men?” plus how you can have a healthy dynamic in male/female friendships.

 

Where are all of the single Godly men?

  • There are two levels to this question: physically where are they… and why are they not pursuing me?
  • He notes the social implications of technology has changed the dating scene. People are losing the personal connection and ability to socialize in person.
  • Only 12% of single women were asked out in the last year.
  • “I know great men that are running in the world, and if you get running in a healthy direction, you’re going to see them out there.”
  • There can be a blame shift that happens when we lament that there are no guys out there.
  • Around 10% of women ask men out every year—they want to be pursued!

 

How can you have a healthy dynamic in a male/female friendship?

  • Friendship is possible, but it’s important to ask yourself and the other person what friendship really means.
  • “If you say, ‘I want to be friends,’ but any other person’s presence makes you feel threatened… you don’t want to be friends. You want possession.”
  • Long term, is it worth spending all of your energy on male friendships? When you get married, would you husband be comfortable with them around?
  • Are we too busy getting all of our micro-needs met by several guy friends to have our needs met by one romantic partner?
  • “Decoupling commitment and sex damaged both. We lost both.”

 

Resources

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!


If you’re a creative, you know the drill. You’re finally done editing. It’s perfect. Now you just need to format...and re-format...for every single platform. With Issuu, make it once, and it’s ready to post everywhere. Issuu is the all-in-one platform to create and distribute beautiful digital publications, from brochures to magazines to sales collateral and more. Get started with Issuu today for FREE or if you sign up for a premium account you will get 50% off when you go to ISSUU.com/podcast and use promo code KAT.

Nov 18, 2020
Another One Bites the Dust: Sex Scandals in the Evangelical Church
43:42

Trigger warning (and kiddo warning): As the episode title suggests, I am going to be talking about some hard topics and sharing some vulnerable stories. 

 

It’s time to acknowledge the elephant in the room

  • It feels dismissive to do a podcast on dating this week.
  • I am committed to being honest with you and have hard conversations. I’m committed to moving towards that thing that is uncomfortable because I honestly think it’s what we all long for.
  • I might say it wrong, I may peel back in hindsight, I may be misunderstood, you may disagree. My hope is that this gets you talking, processing, and thinking critically.
  • Also caveat: we’re all humans, we all mess up. We all need redemption.

 

Here’s what’s going on

  • Evangelical leaders are being exposed at a rapid rate for their moral failures. This year, we have:
  1. Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. exposed.
  2. Pastor John Gray exposed for being unfaithful to his wife.
  3. Christian Comedian John Crist exposed for sex addiction.
  4. Hillsong NYC Pastor Carl Lentz (my former pastor) was fired for “leadership issues, breaches of trust, and moral failures”. The day after the news was made public, Carl released a statement on Instagram admitting to cheating on his wife. Since then, at least one woman has come forward claiming a 5-month relationship with Carl that ended just last week.
  • So this is where we are… I am sad. I am hurting. I am angry. I am tired of seeing pastor after male pastor lack integrity and accountability. The fallout of this behavior is deeper and wider than even we can comprehend.

 

Acknowledge those hurting

  • The most overlooked people in these scenarios are those who have been hurt, betrayed, abused, by the offender/predator/addict/etc.
  • Jesus always took care of the hurting.

o   With all these men’s public confession… let’s be clear that all of these men got CAUGHT and THEN confessed. There is an outpouring of praise: “What a good man. Your ministry has blessed me so much.”

  • Dismissal of pain. We’re allowed to be angry. Gaslighting and spiritual manipulation.
  • Misunderstanding of biblical forgiveness

 

To the hurting and betrayed: I acknowledge you

  • Wives and children: humiliation, betrayal, breach of trust
  • Those who worked with and led with who feel blindsided
  • To those who worked for and served under them
  • To those who attended their ministries
  • To the people of color who feel heartbroken because Carl has been such a voice in the racial justice conversation and Black Lives Matter movement.
  • I ACKNOWLEDGE YOU. I acknowledge your pain. What happened was wrong, and I’m so sorry you are going through this.

 

The fallout and heartache is deep and wide

  • You are allowed to grieve
  • You are allowed to be angry
  • You are allowed to process
  • No one has the right to tell you how you should feel or when you should be “over” this.

 

Do we have such low view of men?

  • Whispering between the lines of all this public praise for a confession is another message: boys will be boys
  • When will we stop believe the lies that sexual integrity is harder for men than it is for women

o   The crushing pressure of my sexual purity and the sexual integrity of men is on my shoulders is wrong. It was never ours to carry, and men it’s time you take ownership.

  • Men just as much made in the image of God as women are.
  • Women are just as much sexual beings as men are.
  • I call BS on the whole thing. Do you really have such low view of men that we think them incapable of learning how to control their urges and impulses? 
  • I don’t accept this behavior and I’m mad not because I think poorly of men, but because I view highly of men.
  • You are a reflection of the image of God, just as women are. It’s time to hold yourself to a higher standard.
  • It’s time to do the work, get accountability for real. 
  • Oppression stops not when the oppressed takes a stand, but when the oppressor repents and turns around.

o   One of the most upsetting things was that it was men in the comments praising the fallen pastor and I saw one lonely woman who said “No. Not okay”. Men, why are you leaving this up to us?”

  • Men, I love you. Be better.

 

Church, we have to do better

  • When we allow this behavior to go on in our church walls, the church no longer is a safe place for the disadvantaged, for the oppressed, for the ostracized, the abused, but a sanctuary for the religious elite, privileged, and those who are abusing their power.
  • Jesus hated abuse of power. We see Jesus flipping over tables in the temple and yelling at the religious elite, “You brood of vipers.” Why? The house of God became a place where those in power abused their power and took advantage of the weak. Do I believe in forgiveness? Do I believe in restoration? Of course. But this behavior should make us angry and spur us to action on behalf of those being taken advantage of. Why? Because this behavior makes Jesus angry.
  • My plea to the church: we have to do better.
  • The church is supposed to be a witness to the world. A reflection of Jesus us— the Jesus who has transformed our lives. Yet, is the church as it stands today a witness to world beckoning hope, acceptance, unconditional love, mercy, and grace? We are a house divided. We are a mockery of what it means to reflect the God image to a world longing for restoration.

 

Pause to look inward

  • I’m not above or below having a lapse in judgement or a moral failure. No one is.
  • We become who we are through tiny decisions that we do or do not make every single day. Every thought, action, posture of the heart, compromise big or small leads us on a path towards life or destruction. Who are you becoming?
  • I have been quick to anger, quickly offended, sharp tongues, and I want to apologize for that. I have been blind to my judgmental spirit because I have felt right. It has felt justifiable.

 

“Being a Christian can be confusing. Our faith is unique among the world’s religions in its central teaching of grace, yet it’s known as a religion of works. Christianity is supposed to be defined by love, yet Christians are viewed as judgmental hypocrites. Our faith proclaims forgiveness of sin, yet we are often remembered for our self-righteous behavior. One research group studying evangelical Christians revealed these public perceptions: “Evangelicals were called illiterate, greedy, psychos, racist, stupid, narrow-minded, bigots, idiots, fanatics, nut cases, screaming loons, delusional, simpletons, pompous, morons, cruel, nitwits, and freaks, and that’s just a partial list…some people don’t have any idea what Evangelicals actually are or what they believe—they just know that can’t stand Evangelicals.” …I have struggled with the gap between what I say and how I live. I have struggled profoundly to integrate my faith into my personal life. Have you felt this tension?” —Jon Tyson, The Burden is Light

 

I am no better

  • I am one wrong decision away from crazy.
  • Who am I? Who do I want to be? Who has access to my life?
  • Do I have the courage to be known in the moment and not just after a crisis or when I’m found out?
  • I reached out to several pastor and mentors and friends this week and said, “Hey, I don’t want this to be me. Will you walk with me? I want to be known.”
  • Who are you becoming?

 

I want to speak peace and hope over you, me, us. Hope does not put us to shame. Jesus’ heart is to make all things new. Jesus makes us new, makes the church new, comforts us, brings us peace. Restore only what you can restore.

 

Resources

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!

 

If you’re a creative, you know the drill. You’re finally done editing. It’s perfect. Now you just need to format...and re-format...for every single platform. With Issuu, make it once, and it’s ready to post everywhere. Issuu is the all-in-one platform to create and distribute beautiful digital publications, from brochures to magazines to sales collateral and more. Get started with Issuu today for FREE or if you sign up for a premium account you will get 50% off when you go to ISSUU.com/podcast and use promo code KAT.

Nov 12, 2020
That's What He Said: Is Asking for a Set-Up Desperate? with Matt Jones
01:04:57

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Welcome back to the That’s What He Said series, where I ask men all the questions you’re DYING to know. We took a short break last week to cover some important topics around faith and politics during this election. As a little refresher, the last episode of That’s What He Said was with Jeff Johnson. He shared all about how a break can be used for growth, the biggest fears guys have in relationships, and how to discuss porn when the guy you’re dating shares that he struggles with it. Check it out here if you missed it.

 

This week, I’m talking with Matt Jones. This episode is pretty special for a few reasons. Firstly, this is the only episode in the That’s What He Said series that has never been heard before! This conversation is still from the archives, but it was never released. Secondly, Matt is the oldest single guy in this series. I know it can feel exhausting to hear advice from young married people who are encouraging you to trust in God’s timing. Matt is in his late 30s and putting in the work. Since having this conversation, he has entered a serious and committed relationship. I can’t wait for you to hear everything he has to share!

 

What are your feelings on set-ups?

  • I asked everyone on Instagram and it broke. the. internet. so I asked Matt about his thoughts on set-ups as someone who has been set up before.
  • Many women feel shame for asking to be set up because it feels like “I can’t get dates on my own,” which is devastating because set-ups can be SO valuable!
  • Instead of feeling shame when someone tries to set you up, recognize that your reach is limited and people in your circle are able to extend that reach.

 

Do you know what you want?

  • Matt reflects on how at 35, a switch flipped when it came to dating.
  • “As I developed and grew and matured, my priorities changed and my intentions changed.”
  • Living in LA, Matt recognizes that being single is a lot more common— people are pursuing their dreams and careers above marriage and having a family.
  • Having spent so much time dating, he recognizes what he wants in a woman and what a healthy relationship looks like for him. That’s so valuable.
  • “When it comes down to the really important stuff… there’s a lack of connection if you’re not centered in the same place.”

 

Mindset in Singleness

  • Should you pursue or wait on God’s timing? Both.
  • Matt admits that he spent much of his singleness in a pity party and this is what prevented him from finding his person during that time.
  • “Take a really good long look at yourself and see how you might be contributing to your own singleness before putting it on society or culture or the location of where you live, or your age, or your circumstances.”

 

Resources

  

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!

 

We’ve been diving into some pretty big conversations around dating and what it’s like being single in today’s culture. Maybe you feel uncomfortable connecting with me on IG in a public way, so I created a private Facebook community for single ladies. (P.S. I’m always giving dating advice over there!) Head over to bit.ly/trw-singleladies to join this community of women lifting each other up!

Nov 04, 2020
Faith + Politics Part II: Can I Love My Neighbor Through My Politics? with Stephanie Summers
01:06:07

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

On Monday, I had a conversation with speaker and author Ashley Abercrombie on why being pro-birth isn’t enough and how to have a compassionate and nuanced dialogue around abortion. Today, the conversation around faith and politics continues. How does our faith impact how we vote? Can we love our neighbor through our politics?

 

I’m exploring this conversation with Stephanie Summers. She is the CEO of the Center for Public Justice, an independent, non-partisan civic education and public policy organization based in Washington, D.C. She has dedicated her life to learning and ministry and justice and I can’t wait for you to hear everything she has to share.

 

How to find accurate/truthful info on candidates

  • Read your local paper— it’s the best place to learn about local politics
  • Attend a local forum or access them on the internet— hear the candidate directly
  • Ask friends who might be more connected to/involved in the political scene
  • Reach out directly to the campaigns

 

What your vote really means

  • “Politics is a way that we respond to God’s call to love our neighbors.”
  • Voting is a way to achieve proximate justice.
  • “My vote isn’t designed to be all about me, but it’s really about the wellbeing, the shalom, the flourishing of our community.”
  • Every human being is made in God’s image, not just the ones we agree with politically.

 

How to show up in patience and love with someone who is on the other side of you

  • None of this is a one-and-done conversation.
  • Pray for openness to hear the other side— and a humility to admit, “I could be wrong— God, show me.” Pray for softened hearts. “God, what do you want from me here?”
  • It’s not your job to convince someone to get on your side.

 

“As God’s people, there is more that unites us in Christ than divides us in politics. We have forgotten that in many ways.”

 

The election is November 3rd, what happens next?

  • “The election is not the end; it’s the beginning.”
  • Get to know your community policies and officials so you don’t feel overwhelmed the week before the next election.
  • Get involved with political discipleship groups to help you think about, use, and develop tools to show up with intentionality as a person of faith with politics.
  • Shared Justice Journal covers a lot of political topics and faith. It will help you wrestle some nuanced and hard topics.

 

How do we look at a candidate holistically?

  • Pandemic response and racial justice are both significant issues right now
  • Think about what it means to be well as a nation
  • Posture of unity, even if we don’t agree (as opposed to punishment if you don’t believe in ‘x’s side.

 

Can we separate someone’s personal character from their policy?

  • Ask yourself these questions:
    • If your pastor had terrible character, would you be okay if your church was growing and people were getting free?
    • If your boss treated you and your coworkers maliciously, but pays you really well?
  • Think about your response. Do you care about the process or the outcome?

 

Resources

 

If you’re a creative, you know the drill. You’re finally done editing. It’s perfect. Now you just need to format...and re-format...for every single platform. With Issuu, make it once, and it’s ready to post everywhere. Issuu is the all-in-one platform to create and distribute beautiful digital publications, from brochures to magazines to sales collateral and more. Get started with Issuu today for FREE or if you sign up for a premium account you will get 50% off when you go to ISSUU.com/podcast and use promo code KAT.

 

If you feel overwhelmed and want to learn to step out in clarity with politics, go to politicaldiscipleship.org and join one of the sessions offered. It’s all about being intentional, and it’s all about community.

Oct 28, 2020
[BONUS] Faith + Politics Part I: Why Pro-Birth is Not Enough with Ashley Abercrombie
01:00:56

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

This week, we’re taking a break from the That’s What He Said series, because it has been on my heart to share resources and stories to support you in the upcoming election (on November 3, in case you need a reminder). I want to ask the hard questions and give you space to ask those hard questions to and wrestle and pray. So this week, I’m talking to repeat guest Ashley Abercrombie and we’re having an honest conversation about abortion, pro-life, and pro-birth. We are so grateful that you are listening to this conversation, even if it might make you uncomfortable.

 

Here’s what’s been going through my mind recently:

  • How does our faith impact how we vote?
  • What does it really mean to be pro-life?
  • What does it mean to be a single-issue voter?
  • And how can I have a robust + holistic view of a candidate without getting sucked into the propaganda + emotion of it all?

 

Why Do Women Have Abortions?

  • Poverty: women not having the capacity to care for both themselves and a child.
  • 25% of the abortions in the United States are had by married women.
  • Victims of domestic violence will turn to abortion when they fear bringing a child into an abusive home.
  • “Abortion doesn’t have a specific face.”

 

Why Are You Anti-Abortion?

  • Is this something you inherited from your faith community growing up?
  • Is this something your parents taught you?
  • Is it a value you hold dear because you have researched the issue and are pro-life, pro-birth, and pro-mother?

 

Pro-Life vs. Pro-Birth and Pro-Mother

  • Being pro-mother means advocating for women’s right to have a good birth experience. Simple things like having a decent maternity leave.
  • When we talk about pro-life, we need to be considering the full life of both the child and mother.
  • “We cannot just be pro-birth people, we have to be pro-life. It’s who God is.”

 

"I do not believe that just because you are opposed to abortion, that that makes you pro-life. In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, a child educated, a child housed. And why would I think that you don't? Because you don't want any tax money to go there. That's not pro-life. That's pro-birth. We need a much broader conversation on what the morality of pro-life is.”

  • Sister Joan Chittister, on a Bill Moyers interview in 2004

 

3 Assumptions Voting Pro-Life and Republican

  1. A Republican will appoint pro-life people in the Supreme Court and thus overturn Roe v. Wade
  • For the last 49 years, Republicans have owned the majority in the Supreme Court, yet no overturn.
  • In 1992, there was an 8:1 ratio of Republicans to Democrats in the Supreme Court. When given the chance to turn down abortion, they didn’t.
  1. Overturning Roe is the key to ending abortion
  • Roe decision didn’t legalize abortion
  • In 1776, abortion was legal everywhere in the United states
  • In the 1930s, doctors reported 800k legal abortions— similar to numbers to that of today
  1. Policies of Republicans decrease abortions and Democrats increase abortions
  • Republicans // Pro-Life
    • Overturn Roe v. Wade
    • No taxpayer funding
    • Defund Planned Parenthood
    • Baby’s right to life
  • Democrats // Pro-Choice
    • Support Roe v. Wade
    • Taxpayer funding for abortions
    • Expand Planned Parenthood
    • Mother’s right to privacy

 

Why Have Abortions Been Declining Since the 1980s?

  1. Fewer women are facing unplanned pregnancies
  2. Reduced teen sexual activity
  3. More access to healthcare and contraceptives
  4. New state restrictions (i.e. late-term abortions)
  5. More affordable adoptions

 

None of these things happen because of Roe v. Wade, a presidential candidate, or a Supreme Court justice.

 

“We don’t have to agree on everything to be connected to one another.”

 

Resources

 

Avail exists to empower New Yorkers facing an unexpected pregnancy or past abortion with critical support and resources to inform their decisions, build healthy relationships, and promote healing. They promise a safe place for confident decisions with no pressure or politics. You can make an appointment to meet your personal advocate at Availnyc.org. (59:38)

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! (28:25)

Oct 26, 2020
That’s What He Said: How to Create a Culture of Honor in Dating with Jeff Johnson
47:24

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Welcome back to the That’s What He Said series, where I ask men all the questions you’re DYING to know. Last week, Jarod Nickerson shared some major insight into things like, “What should I do if I’m put in the friend zone?” “Does attraction have to be there from the start or can it grow?” and “How can I communicate that I’m developing feelings for a guy without being too forward?” Check it out here if you missed it!

 

This week, I’m sharing the conversation I had a while back with Jeff Johnson, a worship pastor at Passion City Church in Atlanta. This episode, we talk a lot about his relationship with his wife, Jourdan. Their love story is a beautiful reminder that love stories will look different for everyone. He also shares how a break can be used for growth, the biggest fears guys have in relationships, and how to discuss porn when the guy you’re dating shared that he struggles with it.

 

Does attraction have to be there from the start?

  • Jeff was physically attracted to Jourdan since the first time he saw her, but he was attracted to her personality as well.
  • “Her character speaks louder than her beauty.”

 

How can a break be used for growth?

  • They broke up after being together for 8 years. Jeff thought he just needed time to work on himself and they would get back together, but Jourdan moved on and started dating a new guy.
  • When they got back together two years later, their prioritization of communication made the relationship strong.

 

Which do you value more, respect or love?

  • “Guys want to feel respected and like they carry weight in the relationship.”
  • He acknowledges a lot of men out there did not have the male leaders guiding them to step into their roles as a man.
  • Sometimes we need to just remember that we all have blown it, and it is not productive to expect perfection from the other person.

 

What are the biggest fears guys have in relationships?

  • If they open up about something, they want to know they will be accepted and understood. They want to feel safe.
  • Being with someone 24/7, everything comes out into the open. “When you get married, there is nothing off the table.”
  • “I know your story and it’s covered by grace, just like my story is covered by grace.”

 

What about porn?

  • It’s hard for women to hear these struggles because they often fall into the trap of thinking they are not enough, which is not the case.
  • How do you know a guy is serious about recovery from pornography? A huge litmus test: Do you see friends in his life bringing him closer to Christ and challenging him on this? Is he willing to work and fight through his issues? Or is he a passive bystander to his growth?

 

Resources

 

You may or may not know that I am writing a book! It’s called Sexless in the City: A Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Painful, Always Honest Look at Dating, Desire, and Sex and it’s coming out in April 2021! Want to stay up to date on all things book related, from book tour, to joining my launch team, to special in-person events (God willing)? Head over to bit.ly/Trw-book so you can be the first to know.

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!

Oct 21, 2020
That’s What He Said: How to Let Him Know You’re Into Him with Jarod Nickerson
01:02:39

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Welcome back to the That’s What He Said series, where I ask men all the questions you’re DYING to know. Last week, Jamal Miller got real with us about expectations in dating, whether it’s how we meet the person (be open to sliding into DMs— it works!), or what qualities we imagine our future spouse will have. Check it out here if you missed it. 

 

This week, I’m sharing the conversation I had a while back with LA-based mental and fitness coach Jarod Nickerson. Believe it or not, we covered pretty much every single question you guys sent in. Curious whether or not he can tell you have a crush on him? Want to let him know you’re interested, but you’re afraid of being too forward? Or maybe you’re just too afraid, period? (Who else gets sweaty palms??) Jarod shares some insight on these questions and so many more.

 

1. Do guys know when a girl has a crush on them?

  • Every guy is different, but plenty of guys are oblivious.

 

2. Do guys develop attraction over time, or does it have to be there from the get-go?

  • A lot of the time, attraction will be there from the start, but it’s possible for the attraction to develop as they get to know a girl.
  • “It’s kind of the reflection of the heart manifesting outside the body.”

 

3. Which do you value more: respect or love?

  • Love and respect go hand in hand.
  • “If someone doesn’t respect you, then how can they love you?”

 

4. How do I know if he likes me?

  • There are a lot of things to consider: Do they have self-awareness? If someone knows who they are, they can be more confident.

 

5. Is it true that if he’s interested, he’ll pursue/do whatever it takes to make it happen?

  • A guy will pursue and do whatever it takes to make it happen until it’s clear she does not want to pursue anything.

 

6. Do you think guys + girls can be just friends? 

  • Jarod believes it is possible but knows there can be confusion for some friendships. It all comes down to being transparent and honest.

 

7. How can I let him know I’m interested in more than just friends w/o being too aggressive/forward?

  • Confidence is sexy and honesty is important. Let it out, but don’t hang on it.
  • “If someone can’t handle you being real and honest with them, then they’re probably not someone who is always going to be calling you up and out for the rest of your life.”

 

8. Would you date a woman that doesn’t share your worldview/faith? 

  • Jarod says no, in short. It’s important to share a worldview.
  • “If they are truly a seeker and have a good heart, then maybe you could court that relationship, but for me I’m a follower of Jesus and if they’re not following Jesus it’s not going to work.”

 

9. Are you intimidated by a woman with a successful career?

  • He wants the answer to be no, but the honest answer is “probably.”
  • “All you’re doing is comparing yourself to how you think it should be, not necessarily what it is.”
  • The time when it can feel most intimidating is at the start of a relationship, but he would definitely still ask her out.

 

10. What’s something that women do that feels emasculating?

  • Distrust and not supporting his future would be devastating.

 

  • “My biggest fear in life is not supporting my future family.”

 

 

11. What’s something a woman can do to honor you/makes you feel like a man?

  • Belief—everyone loves to have someone believe in them.

 

12. What are you looking for in a relationship/partner?

  • “I’m looking for someone who is going to challenge me, push me, and believe in me. I only want someone in my life if they’re going to call me up to be better. I don’t want just a cheerleader.”

 

13. Why do you think a lot of guys don’t want to date within their own community i.e. church?

  • He notes the challenges that arise when there is close proximity in this way. If it doesn’t work out—a guy doesn’t want that ‘Scarlett letter.’
  • Don’t let fear be motivating any of your decisions in relationships.

 

14. Where are all the single godly men—do you think there are more single than women, or does it just seem like that?

  • The question is rooted in fear.
  • “Am I walking in alignment in the identity of the woman God has made?”
  • If you’re pursuing what God has put on your heart, you’ll see Godly men on that same path.
  • “Ask the Lord to quiet your mind and ask Him to speak.”

 

Resources

  • Keep up with Jarod on Instagram at @jarod.nickerson (you’ll notice he’s no longer single— sorry, ladies!)

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out!

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!

Oct 14, 2020
That’s What He Said: DM Dating // Going from DMs to Real Life with Jamal Miller
51:53

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!! 

 

It’s been 2 and a half years since I launched The Refined Collective Podcast (but don’t worry, we’re not going anywhere). We have over 100 episodes and even if you’ve been following for a while, chances are that you missed out on some. To give myself some space and rest this fall (OOF the 2020 struggle is real, y’all), I am relaunching an old series where I ask men all the questions you’re DYING to know, plus there’s a never before heard bonus episode straight from the mouth of single dude actively lookin’ for his wifey.

 

First up, Jamal Miller. This guy is a mogul—for real though. He’s an entrepreneur, pastor, husband to Natasha, father of two daughters, CEO of @millermediagroup, founder of @marriedandyoung, and online campus pastor at All Nations Chicago. Yeah, he’s pretty awesome! This episode, we chat about how he’s an advocate for sliding into DMs (just wait until you hear the way he met his wife), plus he gives you the truth about why that guy is not asking you out. We all walk around with expectations, whether it’s the way we think we’ll meet our person or what qualities we think they’ll have. This episode will help you step into reality and open you up to the possibilities ahead of you.

 

Expectations vs Reality

  • Is your expectation of a rom com meet-cute fairytale keeping you from trying the dating apps or sliding into DMs?
  • You’ve heard of the IG DM slide, but what about the Facebook messenger slide? Yeah, that’s where it all started for Jamal and Natasha.
  • Phone calls turned to skype dates, which then turned into meeting face to face. Losing hope for your dating life in quarantine? Fairytale endings can grow out of socially distanced beginnings.

 

The Dream Guy Checklist

  • “You have to first go through the process of divorcing the person in your head.”
  • We walk around with an image in our head of the exact person we think we should be with and it’s preventing us from seeing the person we’re actually meant to be with.
  • Don’t count out a guy you’ve known forever just because they aren’t new and exciting.
  • “Your feelings don’t know your future.”
  • Are men intimidated by strong women? If he is, he’s the wrong guy. “You want a man who is inspired by you.”

 

Friend Zone vs. Danger Zone

  • Men and women can be friends, but not best friends. That’s the danger zone where things can get complicated and messy.
  • There needs to be clear communication from the start so that nobody gets emotionally tied to the other person and ends up hurt.
  • “Friendship is a breeding ground for marriage.”
  • Relationships can grow out of friendships when there’s communication and respect.
  • “If you’re going to be a bad friend, you’re going to be a bad spouse.”

 

Give Him a Nudge

  • You’re not comfortable pursuing? Well guess what, some guys aren’t comfortable pursuing either. Fear of rejection is REAL, you guys. 
  • He might be timid. Be willing to create space to allow him to pursue.
  • He might be still learning how to lead. He’s allowed to be in progress.
  • He might be unsure of if you like him. Give him a little nudge. If he doesn’t respond, he might not be ready or interested.

 

How to Be Part of the Solution

  • Pray for mentors in the lives of men to lift them up—"Those are your future husbands.”
  • Take responsibility as a woman and fight for the men in your life. 
  • Instead of complaining and lamenting—pray for him.

 

Resources

  • Keep up with Jamal on Instagram at @jamalmiller and his wife, Natasha, at @natashaannmiller.
  • Listen to Natasha Miller’s episode of TRC, “How to Plan for Marriage Not Just a Wedding,” here.
  • They share their love story in a YouTube video— check it out here.

 

I am so grateful for my friend Stephanie May Wilson and her heart to create content to help me walk into a place of God’s presence with trust. She has a new journal called The Between Places: 100 Days to Trusting God When You Don’t Know What’s Next. It’s a prayer journal for seasons of waiting, uncertainty, transitions, and making big decisions. You can pick up your journal at smaywilsonshop.com and use code REFINED for 15% off!

 

I have been a full-time photographer for over a decade and the digital delivery of client images in 2020 has made things simple, but there is still something really special about handing your client a physical keepsake. That’s where USB Memory Direct comes in. They make USB flash drives customized with your logo, and have over 50 styles to choose from in different shapes and materials. Head over to usbmemorydirect.com,and be sure to use code TRC20 at checkout to take 20% off your first order of custom flash drives.

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!

Oct 07, 2020
Dream Interpretation with Andi Andrew
01:05:56

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

Andi Andrew is a dear friend of mine and I am glad to finally have her on the podcast! She is a wife, mother of four kiddos, pastor, author, and speaker. She and her husband, Paul, are lead pastors at the Liberty Church in NYC. She also launched She is Free in 2015, a movement that equips women to walk in freedom. Today we’re talking about dream interpretation, a prophetic dream she had in 2016, and we unpack a recurring dream I’ve been struggling to understand.

 

“As if posting a picture on our social media channels alone solves the massive problems we see all around us. If we could intentionally put our phones down more often and be about our father’s business…we’d see the change + transformation we so eloquently post about on our feeds…I think we can all agree that the last thing a lost and dying world needs is an army of ‘cute entertainers’ who are only interested in saving ourselves while spouting our opinions and putting on a show with an impotent gospel that temporarily fixes our symptoms instead of healing the heart, soul + body.” – Andi Andrew, Fake or Follower

 

A Prophetic Dream

  • Andi had a dream back in the election season in 2016… a tumultuous time.

  • She was walking down the street with her children. There was an angel on her shoulder. She noticed people taking selfies in front of piles of dead bodies along the road. 

  • Andi felt no fear in the dream and her angel told her to walk into the destruction.

  • “God, is this a nightmare? Do I need to be praying for our city?” The Lord told her that no, it was the state of the church.

  • God was telling her that the church needs its foundation to be rebuilt and that it will take longer than we want it to, but it will happen.

  • “In this season, God is really stripping the layers back of the church and of our lives so that we can hopefully wake up and pay attention.”

  • It’s time to go back to the simplicity of the gospel. Get rid of the bells and whistles and focus on devotion to God, each other, prayer, unity, and community.

 

4 Different Types of Dreams

1.     Soul Dream

  • This is your brain processing the day. If you watched a certain show or listened to a certain song that day, it could be weaved into the dream.

2.     Demonic Dream (night terror/nightmare)

  • These are not from God.

  • The enemy is showing you his hand— use this to pray specifically to God.

3.     Prophetic Dream

  • They could be personal, for others, or for a collective of people.

  • Discernment: when and where to share, or are you just supposed to pray for others during this time?

4.     Personal Discipleship Dream

  • If there’s something that you haven’t dealt with from your past, it could keep coming to you in your dreams.

 

Common Dream Symbols

  • Numbers and colors are important. If you remember small details of your dreams, write them down!

  • Different types of buildings and vehicles have different meanings: towers, open fields, scary forests, cars, airplanes, motorcycles.

  • “The word of God, the Holy Spirit, is going to be your greatest teacher.”

 

How to Interpret Your Dream

  • Stay in the word of God— read it all the time.

  • You need to be able to discern if your dream is from you, from God, or from the enemy.

  • Pray! “Holy Spirit, does this have a meaning?”

  • Write down the details of your dreams first thing in the morning.

  • If you’re receiving a prophetic message for another person, “Ask God: Am I meant to share this or am I just meant to pray for this person?” and always approach the person with humility. 

 

Resources

 

I am so grateful for my friend Stephanie May Wilson and he her heart to create content to help me walk into a place of God’s presence with trust. She has a new journal called The Between Places: 100 Days to Trusting God When You Don’t Know What’s Next. It’s a prayer journal for seasons of waiting, uncertainty, transitions, and making big decisions. You can pick up your journal at smaywilsonshop.com and use code REFINED for 15% off!

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! 

Sep 30, 2020
[BONUS] The Messy Middle: When Your Shame Becomes Your Redemption with Mary Marantz
57:33

“She kept going until she looked good on paper, but it never made her feel more real.”

-Mary Marantz

 

How human is it to want something, try and fit the bill, and then finally fit the bill and feel like you’re suffocating? Mary Marantz and I talk all about this on the podcast this week. She grew up in a single-wide trailer, then went on to go to Yale Law School. She recently shared her story in her book Dirt that just came out this month. It’s a story that reminds you that you never really know a person.

 

Dirty Beginnings

  • She shares how looking back on such small beginnings, it’s easy to romanticize it in hindsight or from the outside looking in. But when you’re in it, it’s anything but.
  • God said to her, “This is muddy and it’s hard and it’s not what you wished for and you wished you had someone else’s story, but I’m not done writing.”
  • When she was little, the thing she wanted the most was a real house with a real roof. She imagined a blueprint of a home trying to redraw itself to be perfect. 
  • “She kept going until she looked good on paper, but it never made her feel more real.”

 

Chasing the Shiny Fairytale

  • A large part of her always wanted to go to law school, but sometimes we chase things so grand like law school just to feel like we’ve redeemed our small beginnings.
  • At the start, she was hoping to go to a more local law school, but in a movie-like scenario, her friend submitted her application to Yale and she got in.
  • Later on, she decided to start a photography business with her husband (she met him online, y’all!!!) They took big risks in business— she never wants to live a life that is safe.

 

Carrying Your Past + Honoring Your Dirt

  • “Is it something heavy you’re carrying? Is it a burden? Or is it some precious thing you’re carrying carefully?... For me, it’s the second one.”
  • “I would no more try to run away from the dust in my life that represents the creation of God than I would try to run away from the mud in my story that represents the genesis of my story.”
  • Look at your dirt and see the power of where you come from instead of the shame.
  • “There’s no amount of running where you can outrun you.”

 

Resources

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out!

 

You know how they say it takes a village to raise a kid? Well, this podcast is like my baby. Did you know you could financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)!

Sep 28, 2020
What If I Don’t Know Who I Am: Identity, Trauma and Stepping Into the Unknown with Jedidiah Jenkins
57:05

Is it ok if I don’t know ‘who’ I am…we all want to be somebody. 

But what is a somebody?

—Jedidiah Jenkins

 

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

This week, I’m chatting with travel writer, public speaker, and my good friend Jedidiah Jenkins. A few years ago, Jed made the decision to leave his job to pursue his dream: bike to Patagonia and write a book about it. And he did it. The book, To Shake the Sleeping Self, made the NYT Best Sellers List. Multiple times! Fun fact: we used to be roommates, so we share some fun stories from the good old days. We also chat about people-pleasing tendencies, learning to be your truest self, what our biggest fears can teach us, and why it’s important to name our traumas.

 

“When you start to step towards what feels true, you might ruffle feathers, but what you’ll find is people that look up and go ‘Oh my God, me too.’”

 

Being Gay in the Church

  • Jed was raised Christian, realized he was gay and was told it was bad.

  • “It’s a horrible thing to wake up into a consciousness as a child and realize that something innately inside you, everyone if they found out would reject you… That is a horrible darkness.”

  • This led him to try and be perfect. “If I’m not inherently good, then I must earn it.”

  • When he got to be 30 years old, he decided to really live his life, despite his biggest fear of be

  • Jed opens up about the complicated relationship he has with his mother throughout his journey of becoming who he really is.

When Your Biggest Fears Become Your Reality

  • I open up about when my biggest fear became a reality: my dad having a drug relapse—and found instead of destroying me; it became one of the biggest access points for growth in my life.

  • “Being tested is the revelation of who you are, so I wouldn’t trade that for the world.”— Jed

  • Jed’s worst fear was rejection by everyone, and the opposite happened. “I’m lucky because I have a mother who loves first and is righteous second.”

 

If you don’t heal your past; it will haunt you.

  • 3 Practical things to do to begin walking towards freedom from trauma:

  1. Identify + speak your trauma out loud in safe spaces.

  2. Only then can you start to see how even the darkest moments have led you to who and where you are today.

  3. Release it—if we don’t heal our past; it will haunt us.

  • Jed shares a quote from Onsite, a trauma workshop experience based in Nashville: “If it’s hysterical, it’s historical.” Even if we’re not aware of the trauma, our bodies and subconscious are.

  • Growth doesn’t mean that the struggle isn’t there anymore. It means you now have the tools to  handle the struggle when it pops up.

  • “Walk in the direction of what feels right. If it’s not right, it will tell you.”

 

Resources

  • Keep up with Jedidiah at JedidiahJenkins.com and on IG at @jedidiahjenkins.

  • You can buy his book, Like Streams to the Oceanhere.

  • You can buy his book, To Shake the Sleeping Selfhere.

  • Check out my IGTV response to purity culture here.

  • Check out Onsite, the therapist community in Nashville, here.

  • You can buy the book we talk about, The Body Keeps the Scorehere.

  • Get updates for my book, Sexless in the Cityhere.

 

As a 35-year-old, the one thing I wish I knew in my 20s is that it’s never too early to start taking good care of your skin. I’ve recently become obsessed with Beauty Bio. They have an incredible microneedling tool called the GloPro. It helps create firmer, smoother, and younger looking skin with tighter pores. It’s financially accessible AND time efficient! Go to beautybio.com and check out their GloPro microneedling regeneration tool. Use TRC15 for 15% off your first order.

 

Are you using the right product for your hair? Function of Beauty is hair care that is formulated specifically for you. They create shampoo, condition, and treatments to fit your unique needs. First, you take a quiz telling them about your hair. Their team determines the right blend of ingredients, bottle your order, and send it all right to your door! Plus, they’re vegan and cruelty-free. Go to functionofbeauty.com/refined to take your hair profile quiz and save 20% off your first order.

Sep 16, 2020
[BONUS] Why Are So Many People Leaving the Evangelical Church Right Now?
41:46

On this special bonus episode, I’m sharing part two of my conversation with Addison Bevere. If you missed part one, listen here for our chat about first dates, vulnerability, and 3 practical ways to know if he’s ‘the one.’ This episode, we’re diving into a conversation about his book he just released called Saints: Becoming More Than "Christians." We explore the current climate of the Western Evangelical church. We’re in a mass exodus right now and to be completely real with you, there are times I’m embarrassed to be associated with Christian culture.

 

What it Means to Be Saints

  • The word “Christian” is only used three times in Scripture. The word “Saints” is used over 60 times. 
  • “Saints aren’t people who remove themselves from the struggles of our world, Saints are people who plunge into the messiness of this world. We are all called to be Saints.”
  • We discuss how so much of the Western Evangelical church has ignored the Black Lives Matter movement.
  • “We’re a family and a family isn’t whole and completely represented until every single person is at that table.”
  • The early church (the Saints) took Jesus’ words seriously and shared a Gospel that disrupted the status quo and turned the world upside down. It was a message worth trading their lives for. Can we say the same about today’s “Gospel”?

 

What Does it Means to Be a Christian

  • We’re living a post-Christian world, aka they’re moving on to secularism or DIY spirituality. What does this mean for Christians?
  • “People have reduced the Gospel to a transactional idea.”
  • A sin is a violation of relationships, and Jesus came to restore relationships. 
  • “That’s where the kingdom advances… at the intersection of relationship.”
  • The church is full of extremes. Some people think being saved is both the starting line and the finish line. However, other people make the finish line so far away that nobody can reach it.

 

Getting Back to the Heart of God

  • Is it possible to recover from feelings of embarrassment with the Christian culture?
  • Addison shares that he no longer calls himself a Christian. Instead, he says he is a follower of Christ because he doesn’t like the baggage of identifying as a Christian.
  • “We have to be willing to use new language.”
  • “Saints” is never mentioned in the singular. That’s because it’s about the “we.”

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Sep 11, 2020
Is He the One?: 3 Practical Ways to Know if You’ve Found 'The One' with Addison Bevere
45:16

Addison Bevere is the COO of the non-profit Messenger International and co-founder of Sons and Daughters TV. He also recently became a published author— he just wrote Saints: Becoming More Than “Christians.” We talked for SO long and about so many things that I decided to share this episode in two parts, so you’ll be getting a special bonus episode this week! In this episode, we talk all about love, dating, and relationships. He shares the story of how he got married young and had children right away, plus he gives practical tips to know if you’ve found the one.

 

“There’s joy and meaning and opportunity to be found in every season.”

 

How to Practice Vulnerability in Dating

  1. Clarity

o   “Clarity is a relationship’s best friend in every stage.”

  1. Remove the Pressure

o   Release the first date pressure of “Are they the one?” Instead, ask yourself “Did I enjoy my time?” and “Do I want to spend more time with them?”

  1. Chill out!

o   “We’re trying to answer questions we shouldn’t even be asking yet.”

 

Dating Real talk from a Dude:

  • Addison shares that for the most part, men can be oblivious to when girls are flirting and sometimes they’re just terrified of making a move.
  • “Wisdom transcends nuance, so when we seek to have a heart of wisdom, then we realize that God doesn’t deal in transactions, He deals in relationships.”
  • If you find yourself concerned about their spiritual journey, think more about if you’re on the same path rather than if you’re at the same point on the journey.

 

“God is the only one who gets to exist in the past, the present and the future. We get to live in the present.”

 

3 Ways to Know if They’re ‘The One’

  1. Peace
    • Philippians 4: It’s a peace that transcends all understanding.
    • Colossians 3:14-15: Peace is like an umpire.
    • I share a personal story of a time I almost got engaged and how I look back on that time and recognize I did not have peace in that relationship.
  1. Sacrifice
    • It’s important to ask yourself “Am I willing to lay down my life, in the context of marriage, for the rest of my life for this person?” 
    • People frequently think about their relationship by evaluating the other person.
    • We all evolve in different seasons of life. We will always be navigating new strengths and weaknesses.
  1. Growth
    • Does being with this person acknoweldge and encourage who you are today while inspiring you to be more? Both have to be true. 
    • “Open your eyes to the you that Christ sees.”

 

Resources

 

As a 35-year-old, the one thing I wish I knew in my 20s is that it’s never too early to start taking good care of your skin. I’ve recently become obsessed with Beauty Bio. They have an incredible microneedling tool called the GloPro. It helps create firmer, smoother, and younger looking skin with tighter pores. It’s financially accessible AND time efficient! Go to beautybio.com and check out their GloPro microneedling regeneration tool. Use TRC15 for 15% off your first order.

 

I am so grateful for my friend Stephanie May Wilson and he her heart to create content to help me walk into a place of God’s presence with trust. She has a new journal called The Between Places: 100 Days to Trusting God When You Don’t Know What’s Next. It’s a prayer journal for seasons of waiting, uncertainty, transitions, and making big decisions. You can pick up your journal at smaywilsonshop.com and use code REFINED for 15% off!

Sep 09, 2020
Healing Heartache: How to Overcome Rejection, Break-Ups, + Heartbreak
01:02:56

“In the midst of chaos, there’s always a place where peace resides. 

We just have to find our way to it”. 

— Toni Collier

 

Thank you Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

I have the pleasure of talking to Toni Collier this week. She is a speaker, host, consultant, and the founder of a women’s ministry called Broken Crayons Still Color. She helps women process brokenness and move towards hope. (I spoke to her husband Sam Collier a few weeks ago on the podcast— you can listen here.) We had a wonderful conversation all about her process of healing from traumas, our daddy issues (shoutout to Beyonce), and how she moved from divorce to healing and love.

 

“Our childhood wounds become the hurdles of our adulthood.”

  

4 Big Hitters to Overcoming Heartbreak

  1. Self-awareness
    • Be honest and confront yourself.
    • Too often, we just survive through traumas. We need to understand that those traumas are not okay and heal from them. We also need to realize that healing isn’t overnight. 
  1. Lean in and do the work: 
    • what’s the bottom of your pit?
    • Because of the pain she endured in childhood, she found herself in situations that caused further trauma and pain.
    • “I turned into this extremely hurt, abused, bitter woman and it was leaking everywhere because our pain can just not stay silent.”
    • Beth Moorewas instrumental in Toni’s healing journey.
  1. Go to the root of the trauma.
    • Toni shares the success she had with EMDR and what it does to treat trauma.
  1. If it’s hysterical, it’s historical.
    • Unhealed trauma manifests in the present.
    • “Until we look ourselves in the eyes and become the healthy whole individuals that we want to date and marry, we’re going to perpetuate a cycle of single people roaming the earth.”

 

5 Quick Heartbreak Hacks 

  1. Unfollow + Block on social. If you think you’ll be tempted to search them, block them!
  2. Community: invite trusted people into the process with you.
  3. What brings you joy?
  4. Self-Care
  5. Back to the basics:

o   Eat well 

o   Sleep well.

o   Move your body.

 

Replenishment Cycle

  • The key here is to have a reserve of health that you can pull on.
  • Ask yourself, ‘What brings my soul, emotions, and spirit joy?’

o   Quiet time // Check out my 7-day devotional

o   Meditation // Check out my 30-day Bible study and meditation guide

o   Get in nature

o   Take care of yourself: nails, hair, get dressed. “The souls God gave us are inside of the bodies he gave us. We get to take care of them too.”

o   Working out

  • Set up consistency within your replenishment cycle. Commit to the healing process.
  • Now allowed: a text message from someone. “They cannot fill you up.”

 

Resources

 

As a 35-year-old, the one thing I wish I knew in my 20s is that it’s never too early to start taking good care of your skin. I’ve recently become obsessed with Beauty Bio. They have an incredible microneedling tool called the GloPro. It helps create firmer, smoother, and younger looking skin with tighter pores. It’s financially accessible AND time efficient! Go to beautybio.com and check out their GloPro microneedling regeneration tool. Use TRC15 for 15% off your first order.

 

I am so grateful for my friend Stephanie May Wilson and he her heart to create content to help me walk into a place of God’s presence with trust. She has a new journal called The Between Places: 100 Days to Trusting God When You Don’t Know What’s Next. It’s a prayer journal for seasons of waiting, uncertainty, transitions, and making big decisions. You can pick up your journal at smaywilsonshop.com and use code REFINED for 15% off!

Sep 02, 2020
Why Does the Church Worship Marriage?
01:03:00

Today is a big day, friends, because I’m chatting with Jamie Ivey! A few years ago Jamie had me on her podcast The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey. AND it was the first time I ever opened up about my faith and singleness. It was astonishing to hear the response to that conversation and it is part of the reason I am writing a book. Today, we chat about her book, You Be You, understanding our callings, how the church worships marriage, and how to maintain healthy boundaries in friendships.

 

Does being single in the church feel like being JV to the Varsity of married couples ?

 

Worshipping Marriage

  1. We talk about how some people feel their biggest calling is being a wife or a mother and the ways it can be a problematic feeling:
  2. The 3 Marriage Myths:
  3. Marriage will solve your problems, and fix you. i.e. eating disorder, body image, addiction, etc.
  4. Marriage makes you more godly.
  5. Marriage will jumpstart your purpose and calling.
  6. “This is on us as the church to quit proclaiming marriage as God’s greatest gift to us. It is a good gift, but I am not any more special than you because I’m married.”

 

Can Men and Women Be Friends? (Ya we went there…again).

  • We chat about how if you shut yourself off from any male friendships, you’re missing out on getting to know so many people.
  • Jamie talks about the boundaries she and her husband stick to when it comes to guarding their marriage.
  • #1 thing to keep in mind in guy/girl friendships: COMMUNICATION. If you’re developing feelings for a guy friend… SAY IT! 

 

Knowing Your Calling

  • Sometimes we can feel so paralyzed when trying to identify our calling, but we tend to overcomplicate things.
  • 3 Questions to ask yourself to figure out your calling (brought to you by: Tim Keller) to Know Your Calling:

o   Affinity

o   Ability

o   Opportunity (check the full article here)

  • “God has equipped you to do something great.”

 

Resources

  • Keep up with Jamie at JamieIvey.com and on IG at @jamieivey.
  • You can buy Jamie’s book You Be You hereText FRIEND to 33777 and Jamie will send you a free downloadable print and talk to you about her book!
  • You can listen to her podcast The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey here.
  • Listen to my conversation with Jamie Ivey on The Happy Hour Podcast here.
  • Watch Jamie’s family chat with Emmanuel Acho about being white parents raising Black children here.
  • Check out Tim Keller’s Calling Exercise PDF here.
Aug 26, 2020
[BONUS] Stop Saying "Sorry": How to Lead Like a BOSS
48:34

Dr. Sasha Shillcutt is a nationally renowned cardiac anesthesiologist and has witnessed gender-bias in her field. She’s also seen women withdraw and conceal their leadership. We ended up having a completely different conversation than we had planned because we started chatting about the idea of ‘bossiness.’ Do you ever stop and think of how many times you say “I’m sorry” throughout the day to make others feel more comfortable and diminish your own experience? We dive into why that is.

 

It’s Okay to be Bossy

  • We chat about how our tendency to apologize for everything dims our own light .
  • “We constantly have to ask ourselves: do we have permission to be ourselves today?”
  • Even if we call someone out on inappropriate behavior, we can fall into saying, “I’m sorry, but…” Dr. Sasha now says, “Can you repeat that?” You shouldn’t have to apologize to make someone else feel better about their inappropriate behavior.
  • “Being bossy saves lives. Taking action saves lives.”

 

Two Strategic Ways to Lead Like a Boss

  1. Leading statements
  • When you’re going into an assertive position, this is what you have to do: for the next five minutes you’re going to clearly define where you see [whatever project you’re working on] and you’re doing it this way so you can share clearly your stance.
  • If you anticipate getting emotional, say, “I’m not upset; I’m just super passionate about this.”
  1. The next time you’re in a room where a woman asserts herself, affirm her!

 

Four Ways to Negotiate Like a Boss (Even When You Don’t Know What You’re Doing)

  1. Know your non-negotiables and your bottom line
  • Get clear on the things that you will NOT do
  • Be willing to walk away from something good because you know you’re worth something amazing
  1. Realize your power
  • Start talking with women about how much you’re making
  • Sallie Krawcheck, the CEO and co-founder of Ellevest shared, “61% of womenwould rather talk about their own death than talk about money.”
  1. Know what the other party wants from you
  • How do you know what the other party wants?
  • What are the 3 highest goals for me this year?
  • How do you optimize yourself in those 3 areas?
  • There’s power in being the candidate that negotiates
  • As women, we just feel grateful we got the job
  1. Think long-term
  • This breakthrough will support future women
  • “I’m not just negotiating for Sasha, I’m negotiating for my family, my daughters coming behind me, my friends who are women. I’m negotiating for all of them and that empowers me.”

 

Resources

  • Keep up with Dr. Sasha Shillcutt at com and on IG at @becomebraveenough.
  • You can buy Dr. Sasha’s book, Between Grit and Grace: The Art of Being Feminine and Formidable, here.

 

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out!

Aug 24, 2020
Is My Sexual Desire Sinful?
32:04

I am so grateful to The Newsstand Studio at 1 Rockefeller Plaza for providing a place for me to record this episode for y’all! No more Brooklyn closet recording!!!

 

I never thought I’d be talking about things like sexual desire and masturbation, but the masturbation series broke records for downloads. So many of you reached out saying it was what you had been needing to hear. So here I am, back to talk about sexual desire. My heart today is to unpack for you a biblical vision surrounding sexuality and desire and for you to walk away with clarity and practical tools to walk out your sexual desire well in whatever season you may be in.

 

"You can't talk about sexuality without talking about how we were made. And that will inevitably lead you to who made us. At some point you have to talk about God. Sex. God. They're connected. And they can't be separated. Where the one is, you will always find the other.” Rob Bell, Sex God

 

God is NOT Afraid of Your Sexual Desire

  • The rhythm and repetition of the Creation account is filled with erotic language. “The climax of creation is the creation of humanity.”
  • Song of Solomon: Hebrew boys weren’t allowed to read it because it was so erotic.
  • Anyone that says this is just a metaphor for Jesus and the church is dismissing the layered and blatant text.
  • Psalms: And again, “I thirst for you, my whole being longs for youyour love is better than life…on my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night…I cling to you (Ps.63:1-8 emphasis mine). 
  • When was the last time you cried out to God with such visceral language because your longing for Him was so strong?

 

“God is not shy or embarrassed or afraid of desire or erotic language.”

 

What is Sexual Desire?

Spirituality can be described as a vast longing that drives us beyond ourselves in an attempt to connect with, to probe and to understand our world. And beyond that, it is the inner compulsion to connect with the Eternal Other, which is God. Essentially, it is a longing to know and be known by God (on physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual levels). This is why we are called to worship God with all that we are—body, mind and soul (Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Mark 12:29-31)…

 

Sexuality can be described as the deep desire and longing that drives us beyond ourselves in an attempt to connect with, to understand, that which is other than ourselves. Essentially, it is a longing to know and be known by other people (on physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual levels). It thus forms part of what it means to ‘love others as we love ourselves’ (Mark 12:29-31)…Our deepest longings as human beings are to be in relationship with God and our neighbor—this really and simply is the human condition…

 

Debra Hirsch, Redeeming Sex, page 16 (parantheses quote from Alan and Debra Hirsch, Untamed

 

Sexual Desire vs. Desire for Sex 

  • Sexual desire is the desire to connect outside of ourselves with others—this includes a natural desire for sex—but to say that our sexual desire is the same as our desire for sex is to take a multi-faceted 3-D experience and flatten it into 1-D stick figure.
  • Sexual desire is way more expansive than just bodies touching and fluids exchanging. 
  • God didn’t say humanity is good…but your sexual desire is only good in marriage—he just said it’s very good.
  • There has to be a way to embrace sexuality outside of marriage + outside of sex in a way that’s honoring. This is really good news! Especially for those of us who are single!
  • Having sexual desire is one of the most common human experiences—in fact, if you didn’t have desire—that’s a whole other conversation. Ultimately our sexual desire is a shadow of our desire for God.

 

Is My Sexual Desire Sinful?

God put the penis on the man, and he put the testicles on the man, and he filled those testicles with sperm. He created all tissue—some that would expand, some that would secrete; he filled the man with testosterone to walk through all creation and name the animals, to exercise God-given authority. When Adam was done with that, before sin entered the world, God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him’.

 

I want to say it again: God’s the one who created and wire this whole thing. In Genesis 2, sin hadn’t even entered the world yet, and God said it wasn’t good for Adam to be alone. So he knocked him out, pulled out a rib, and shaped the woman. And as he shaped the woman differently, he gave her larger breasts, rounder hips, and a vagina. He filled the woman with a different hormone, estrogen. The woman’s body was not the Devil’s idea; it was all God’s doing.”

Matt Chandler, The Mingling of the Soulspage 13

 

Genesis 1 teaches us that GOD CREATED HUMANS AS HOLISTIC BEINGS. Our sexuality and desires are not a surprise to God; it’s not shameful or taboo: He created it and then called it good. Something about it reflects an aspect of who He is.

 

“God doesn’t make bad or gross or shameful things. All of who you are reflects the Genesis 1 God image in you.”

 

Resources

 

Thank you so much to this week’s sponsors of The Refined Collective Podcast!!

 

As a 35-year-old, the one thing I wish I knew in my 20s is that it’s never too early to start taking good care of your skin. I’ve recently become obsessed with Beauty Bio. They have an incredible microneedling tool called the GloPro. It helps create firmer, smoother, and younger looking skin with tighter pores. It’s financially accessible AND time efficient! Go to beautybio.com and check out their GloPro microneedling regeneration tool. Use TRC15 for 15% off your first order.

 

I am so grateful for my friend Stephanie May Wilson and he her heart to create content to help me walk into a place of God’s presence with trust. She has a new journal called The Between Places: 100 Days to Trusting God When You Don’t Know What’s Next. It’s a prayer journal for seasons of waiting, uncertainty, transitions, and making big decisions. You can pick up your journal at smaywilsonshop.com and use code REFINED for 15% off!

Aug 19, 2020
What Dating in 2020 is Really Like…
01:06:19

This week, I two guests…double the fun y’all! I have the pleasure of talking to Yue Xu and Julie Krafchick, the podcast hosts of The Dateable Podcast. When they began, it was a whole lot of ‘dating sucks,’ but they’ve transitioned out of that to focusing on getting to the bottom of why people do the things they do. We’re chatting all things dating during COVID, dating in the midst of the BLM Movement, and ALL the things.

 

It’s Not Just You

  • Everyone thinks they’re alone in their dating struggles, but if you talk to enough people you find that it’s pretty universal.
  • “There’s so much looking outward at other people’s behavior that people forget to look at their own behavior.”
  • One of the biggest struggles in dating is that for a long time, there was just a lot of bad advice out there.

 

Lessons Learned from Hosting a Dating Podcast

  • “There’s no formula. Love cannot be hacked. It just doesn’t work that way.”
  • Julie and Yue share some of their own dating experiences— they even interviewed some of their first dates for their podcast!!
  • Dating doesn’t always end in marriage, and that is ok! Sometimes the outcome of a date is just a platonic relationship, and that’s okay.

 

What Dating in 2020 is Really Like… 

  • “This might not end for a while. We just don’t know. The only thing we can do is adapt to what we are given.”
  • Mindset is everything, whether you’re using this time to video date or focus on yourself.
  • “This could be a really great thing for our dating lives if we let it be.”
  • We talk about how more and more people are putting their support of Black Lives Matter in dating profiles, and I share a personal story of ending a first date with a man.
  • “A lot of times, we don’t know what’s important to us until we experience it.”
  • “The key to modern dating is to trust yourself. There isn’t a rulebook.”

 

Recourses

 

As a 35-year-old, the one thing I wish I knew in my 20s is that it’s never too early to start taking good care of your skin. I’ve recently become obsessed with Beauty Bio. They have an incredible microneedling tool called the GloPro. It helps create firmer, smoother, and younger looking skin with tighter pores. It’s financially accessible AND time efficient! Go to beautybio.com and check out their GloPro microneedling regeneration tool. Use TRC15 for 15% off your first order.

Aug 12, 2020
What Does Being A Man Feel Like?
58:51

I have the absolute pleasure of chatting with pastor, author, and host of the A Greater Story podcast, Sam Collier. He just released a book called A Greater Story all about turning messes into miracles and how God redeemed stories in his life. We chat all about finding our own miracles during COVID-19, his personal journey finding his family, and what it’s like to be a man in the church.

 

Finding Miracles in COVID-19

  • “Every miracle is a reaction to the impossible.”
  • Because of COVID-19, Sam has lost family, he has struggled with launching his book, and being a speaker has been made incredibly difficult.
  • “Maybe this book can help people find the miracle that they need in this season.”
  • For those of us who may struggle with comparison, sometimes the miracle is just learning to trust God rather than a specific result we’ve been waiting for.
  • “When change happens, we tend to focus on the challenges. If you look there, that is all you’ll see. If you decide in the midst of the change to try to find the opportunity, then you may end up finding a miracle.”
  • “God never promised us perfection, but that He would be with us in the imperfection and that if He doesn’t move the move the mountain He’ll give us the power to climb it.”

 

Finding Family

  • “Whatever lack I was supposed to be experiencing from the absence of my biological family, I just didn’t have”
  • Sam shares his experience finding his biological mother and meeting her for the first time on national television.
  • He talks about the discoveries he made about himself when he found his biological family and how those things helped him understand who he is.

 

Being a Black Man

  • We talk about the differences between how the church fosters men versus women.
  • The male/female dynamics have shifted over the years, and we explore how we can find a balance of needing another person and being our own empowered individuals.
  • Sometimes it feels like our only options are what culture says vs what the religious spirit says. But there is a third option: what Jesus says.
  • “We want to feel strong. We want to feel like we matter. We want to feel like we’re important… like someone is proud of us.”

 

Resources

 

As a 35-year-old, the one thing I wish I knew in my 20s is that it’s never too early to start taking good care of your skin. I’ve recently become obsessed with Beauty Bio. They have an incredible microneedling tool called the GloPro. It helps create firmer, smoother, and younger looking skin with tighter pores. It’s financially accessible AND time efficient! Go to beautybio.com and check out their GloPro microneedling regeneration tool. Use TRC15 for 15% off your first order.

 

Are you using the right product for your hair? Function of Beauty is hair care that is formulated specifically for you. They create shampoo, condition, and treatments to fit your unique needs. First, you take a quiz telling them about your hair. Their team determines the right blend of ingredients, bottle your order, and send it all right to your door! Plus, they’re vegan and cruelty-free. Go to functionofbeauty.com/refined to take your hair profile quiz and save 20% off your first order.

Aug 05, 2020
Is Married Sex Better Sex?
01:11:45

“You can never say, do, or be the wrong thing to the right person.”—Hugette Montesinos Rodriguez

 

Hugette Montesinos Rodriguez is the CEO of Disfunkshion Magazine and has worked with thousands of women worldwide spreading her message of living a delicious life as she moves from fear to freedom. She is the most colorful person I know and I’m so excited to be talking with her about sex, specifically married sex, and if it was better because she waited for it.

 

A Non-Linear Love Story

  • After 9 months of marriage to her high school sweetheart, Hugette discovered some heartbreaking things that led to divorce.
  • She recalls turning to God in this season of heartbreak and healing. 
  • “You go from building a life and a future… to all of a sudden your entire foundation being completely destroyed.”

 

Love Fast

  • She remembers looking up at the midnight sky on New Year’s Eve promising that for the first 3 months of the year she’d turn all of her thoughts and hopes for love over to God.
  • She went ziplining in Costa Rica “…and that’s where I met my delicious husband.”
  • This was in the middle of her love fast, but she ended up connecting with him and he used a really smooth line on her.
  • As they began connecting more online, she noticed he was committed to God. 
  • Realizing she was getting interested, she was honest with him and told him she needed to not talk to him until April. He respected it.

 

Unlikely Love

  • Hugette shares a moment when it felt like God was working in her life in a major way.
  • After three months, they knew they wanted to get married. They spent a year and a half long distance dating and now they’ve been married for 5 years and have a wonderful 10-month-old baby girl.
  • In that time, Hugette was clear with him that she wanted to wait until marriage to have sex and his response was what everyone dreams they would hear.

 

Married Sex

  • Hugette shares what it was like for her to abstain from sex waiting for marriage when she had had sex in your previous marriage.
  • She is honest about the fact that sex with her ex-husband was painful and lacking compared to sex with her husband now.
  • “Every part of it… it’s like a party. It’s a celebration every time. I know I can be free and I can enjoy every bit of it.”
  • We chat about the difference between external and internal orgasm. The first time she experienced both was with her husband.
  • “It’s this mind-blowing experience. There’s a reason why this is so sacred. There’s that physical, spiritual, and emotional connection.”

 

Managing Expectations

  • There’s so much pressure around the wedding night that their wedding night was actually terrifying. But they were able to have an open conversation about it.
  • “Don’t go into marriage thinking you’re going to have mind-blowing sex on day one.”
  • Hugette shares that it’s important to think of more than just attraction.
  • “If life is this marathon that you’re going to run together, who is going to be your best teammate who is really going to be alongside you?”
  • She stresses the importance of communication and vulnerability. Tell him what you like.
  • “When a guy is really that into you, so much of his sense of pleasure and satisfaction comes from seeing the satisfaction in you.”

 

Resources

 

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Jul 29, 2020
How to Fight Fair: Do you want a healthy relationship or do you want to be right?
01:01:53

This episode is really special, friends. I didn’t come into this episode with a real plan for a direction our conversation would take and I’m glad I didn’t because it naturally went to some amazing places. This week, I’m chatting with Todd McCullough, founder of TMAC Fitness. We spoke about conflict resolution, fitness, our backgrounds as athletes, but we kept coming back to the value of relationship and community over being ‘right.’

 

Who We Really Are

  • As I read his bio, we chat about the fact that it’s so hard to keep them short and accurate.
  • Todd acknowledges that bios only show our accomplishments, and never the failures that led us to those accomplish those things.
  • We each share three bullet point failure moments that were pivotal to how we became the people we are shown to be in our bios.

 

Being Okay With Conflict

  • I tend to be okay with saying what needs to be said even if it’s going to ruffle feathers.
  • We tend to surround ourselves with people who act as an echo chamber for us. But is the goal in life to be conflict-free or to have unity?
  • “We would rather be right than actually find truth and I think that’s a breakdown right now in society.”
  • Todd shares his experience growing up in a conservative community and then living in a progressive community
  • He opens up about how he loves God, but he loves to listen to Sam Harris, who is an atheist, because it challenges him and helps him understand his faith on a deeper level.
  • “Why do I believe this?”

 

Black Lives Matter

  • Todd believes it’s important to judge the individual rather than the group. And I share my thoughts on systemic racism and corporate sin.
  • “The hard part about blind spots is that you can’t see what you can’t see.”
  • Todd shares his experience as someone with family members who are police officers.
  • He shares that he has had conversations with the Black people in his life about their interactions with police officers and they look different from the interactions he’s had.
  • “If you believe that we’re all brothers and sister, then you should look out for those that are being treated poorly.”
  • “Nobody wants to hear what you believe; people want to see how you live your life.”

 

“Does Jesus love the people I hate?”

 

Speed Round

  • Number one thing you can do to propel your wellness and fitness? His focus has shifted over the years from working out, to eating well, to meditation, but it has always circled back to one thing: having a healthy identity as an individual. “God’s not going to love me anymore if I have a six pack”
  • Is alcohol good or bad for your fitness? Depends on the individual. He shares his own drinking routine.
  • How is physical fitness a manifestation of your spiritual life? “We have a personal responsibility to give our best each and every day to our loved ones and our community. Fitness is simply a tool to do that.”

 

“Fitness is a tool to dive into the spiritual.”

 

Resources:

 

Who loves free workouts? Uhm, ME! Todd has a free 10-day at-home workout training plan. The workouts are 20 minutes, end with a meditation and prayer, and there is no equipment needed! How amazing is that? These workouts are for beginners and the more advanced. To get more info head over to bit.ly/trctmac.

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

Jul 22, 2020
Part II: Is Masturbation A Sin?
33:42

Today is part TWO of a conversation on masturbation on the podcast. If you missed part one, check it out here before you listen to this episode. This week, I’ll be walking through what the Bible says about masturbation and if it is really a sin. 

 

Is Masturbation A Sin?

Brokenness is the beginning of the gospel—David Kim. 

 

  • My honest answer is: yes, no, maybe.

o   Is it possible to touch myself and explore my body and experience pleasure and stay connected to myself, God, and others? I think so.

  • All the way from Genesis to Revelation there’s this rhythm we see of death to life, brokenness to restoration, renewal and redemption.[1]Clearly there is some real brokenness with masturbation, but if Jesus came to make all things new, is it possible that He could have a redemptive vision for this too[2]
  • 1 Corinthians 6:12-13; 10:23

o   Paul says it twice: Everything is lawful, but not everything is beneficial. Everything is permissible, but not everything is beneficial.

 

How Can Masturbation Be A Win?

  1. Pleasure
  • God is for our pleasure. How do I know? Taste buds, sunsets, brownie sundaes, and the only purpose of the clitoris is pleasure.
  1. Practice Healthy Consent
  • Consent in sexual encounters whether it’s a hug or sex is VITAL. But if we don’t know what we want or what feels good we won’t have the tools to communicate our wants and needs.
  • Masturbation can be a way to:

o   Know your body.

o   Know what feels good and doesn’t feel good.

o   And have the ability to communicate that.

 

  1. Mutual Honor and Acceptance
  • We put on other people a tenth of what we put on ourselves. If I judge, shame, dismiss my sexual desire and in essence don’t accept it, how can I accept my partner’s?

 

  1. Connection and Innocence
  • To God:

o   Mark 12:29-30— love God with all of you.

  • To self and others:

o   Matthew 18:3— be like little children.

o   If little children can masturbate in innocence, can we not get back to that as well?

 

  1. Practice Being Present: Sensuality
  • Dr. Celeste Holbrook, the Christian sexologist, describes sensuality beautifully: it’s the act of being present. She talks about how toddlers are the most sensual beings because they’re in a constant state of discovery.
  • Porn and masturbation are not mutually exclusive.
  • Removes fear and shame around body, self, and sexual desire.

 

Questions to Ask Yourself

  1. Am I addicted to porn?
  • I am not here to shame you if this is your story.
  • Masturbation for a person addicted to porn would be like a drunk living at a bar. Not a win for you right now.
  • Phylicia Masonheimer has some amazing resources for you around this topic.
  • Sexuality can be activated by abuse. If that is your story, I am so sorry and remember that it is never your fault. Your sexuality is not tainted and you have permission to work through this.
  1. Why am I feeling turned on right now?
  • 50 Shades of Grey, porn, or a normal Wednesday afternoon?
  1. What am I really looking for in this moment?
  • Connection?
  • Intimacy?
  • Release?
  1. How can I honor myself, God, and my future in this moment?
  • Really take the time to answer this question for yourself. 
  1. If shame weren’t a part of the conversation, how would I show up?
  • Shame and fear is not the heart of God— Ephesians 3— rooted and grounded in love. Jesus came for the abundant life— not a spirit of fear, but of power!
  • Is it possible to masturbate and stay present and not fantasize?
  • Is it possible to remain in healthy community with myself, God and others and masturbate?
  • Is it possible to experience self-pleasure and remain outward focused? Yes!
  • Grace Alone: In every other area of our lives we’re willing to fumble, but sexually we’re so terrified. It’s like 1-strike you’re out and sent to the pit of hell. No!
  • Just because some people may become alcoholics, doesn’t mean everyone will.
  1. Who am I becoming? (Jon Tyson)
  • What are the actions, words, choices of your life propelling you towards?
  • When to discern if this is problematic behavior?

o   Porn/erotica.

o   Isolation.

o   Keeping you from relationship.

o   Distraction from everyday activities.

o   Can’t work, go out, or sleep without it— like any addiction.

o   Fantasy land vs. real life.

 

So is masturbation a sin? Yes, no, maybe. Where is your heart? I have masturbated in all 3 scenarios. Give yourself permission to search your heart, to explore, and seek God’s heart. If fear is a part of the conversation, reject it!

 

Resources:

 

Books to Read:


[1] Timothy Keller. The Gospel in All Its Forms. Acts 29, December 12, 2008. https://www.acts29.com/tim-keller-explains-the-gospel/. Accessed September 10, 2019. Another incredible resource on this is the book Every Good Endeavor by Timothy Keller. It’s a book I wish  I would’ve read when I was in my 20s; it would’ve saved me a lot of heartache.

[2] “He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” (New International Version, Revelation 21:5).

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

A HUGE shoutout to some of our newest Patreon supporters: Rhianna Duet, Cindy Chan, Chris Kottak, Mary Elizabeth, Mallory Stearns, Marina Mayer, and Nicole Magloire! We are so grateful for you!

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Jul 15, 2020
Part I: Is Masturbation A Sin?
40:42

Today is Part 1 of a conversation I have been avoiding having with you guys in a solo show.  I’ve been afraid of getting it wrong, and afraid of someone taking a sound bite out of context. But I don’t want fear to keep me from this dialogue. There’s also a reason I talk about masturbation in a workshop setting, in my online courses and with one on one coaching clients. It’s a nuanced conversation with a lot of grey areas which are harder to teach to the masses. However, I don’t think this information needs to solely go to people who have the budget for it. So today, I am diving right into Part I of a two part series on masturbation.

 

Here’s what I won’t do:

  • Tell you what to do.

  • Give you a script to regurgitate to yourself and others to justify any of your actions.

  • Shame or judge you for your past or your current decisions.

  • Try to fix you or convince you of anything.

 

What I hope to do:

  • Point you to Jesus, to Scripture, and to nuance.

  • Normalize a healthy conversation around sex, sexuality, desire, and yes— masturbation

o   The word alone can feel shame inducing, right? How many times do you say ‘masturbation’ out loud on a regular basis?

o   God is not ashamed of our sexual desire and sexuality—he created it (Genesis 1: 26-31).

  • Give you tools to equip you to navigate your faith, values, and a dialogue around masturbation.

  • Don’t take my word for it—I’m not God. This is where I am at after close to 7 years of researching, praying, doubting, trial and error, and tough conversations.

  • God created you with a mind—use it!

 

Finally, it’s ok if we don’t see eye to eye—we can still love, respect, and honor one another even if we come to different conclusions.

 

My Personal Story: 

Before we move forward with vision and walk out today with clarity, we have to be willing to look backwards: how, why, and through what means did we get here?

·      Home: ‘It’s okay to masturbate.’

·      School: Silence.

·      Friends: Silence, masked conversations, and shame.

·      Culture: ‘Do what feels good.’

·      Church: All wrong, all the time, shut down your desire until marriage—only guys struggle with sexual desire.

 

4 Questions to Ask Yourself

·      What do you currently believe about masturbation and why?

·      What were you taught about masturbation at home, school, from friends, culture, and church?

·      Where and how were those beliefs formed?

·      Are those sexual scripts/beliefs rooted in fear or freedom?

·      Identify the shame agenda + the Jesus agenda.

 

The Big ‘O’: The Power of the Orgasm

·      When we orgasm, dopamine and oxytocin are released in a surge in our bodies.

o   Dopamine is a neurotransmitter released from the reward center part of our brain associated with pleasure.

o   Oxytocin is a feel-good hormone. One of its sole purposes is to create deep bonds between people. This is like “soul ties.”

 

The Harem Within: C.S. Lewis

“For me the real evil of masturbation would be that it takes an appetite which, in lawful use, leads the individual out of himself…and turns it back: sends the man back into the prison of himself, there to keep a harem of imaginary brides. And this harem, once admitted, works against his ever getting out and really uniting with a real woman. For the harem is always accessible, always subservient, calls for no sacrifices or adjustments, and can be endowed with erotic and psychological attractions which no real woman can rival. Among those shadowy brides he is always adored, always the perfect lover: no demand is made on his unselfishness, no mortification ever imposed on his vanity. In the end, they become merely the medium through which he increasingly adores himself . . . .After all, almost the main work of life is to come out of our selves, out of the little, dark prison we are all born in. Masturbation is to be avoided as all things are to be avoided which retard this process. The danger is that of coming to love the prison”[1]

 

1.     My pleasure is #1 priority

·      Ephesians 5: Respect our husbands and husbands to serve their wives like Christ served the church.

·      Our sexual experiences with our spouses should be outward focused, let’s serve each other—not ‘I’m feeling turned on, get me off, and then roll over.’

2.     Ends on self

·      Sexuality = desire for ‘o’ others.

·      Gets us outside of our heads and into relationship and community with others.

3.     No iron sharpens iron here folks

·      Conflict resolution.

·      Mirrors of each other.

·      Constant growth.

·      “Brides always adored” or “yes men.”

4.     FANTASY LAND: Loving the prison more than real life

·      I don’t want to get so good at getting myself off that I don’t need another person.

·      91% of millennials masturbate (19 and 36 for SKYN's 2018 Millennial Sex Survey, and found that 91 percent of respondents masturbated. https://www.bustle.com/p/how-millennials-are-masturbating-in-2018-9121392)

·      2015—Pornhub site: 60% of its users were millennials.

·      Compartmentalized and scratching just of an itch that we don’t need to/want to take the risk of being in a relationship and dating.

·      Avoiding: heartbreak, awkwardness, conflict, rejection.

·      Is this why so many of us in the church are single? We’re getting just enough of our “itches” scratched that the risk of truly putting ourselves out there to be in a relationship is not worth it?

 

Don’t worry, I won’t leave you hanging. Process what we’ve just gone through today and get ready for Part 2 coming next Wednesday. In the meantime, journal through the questions I ask above under “4 Questions to Ask Yourself.” Make sure you’re subscribed to the podcast so the next episode will download straight to your devices!!

 

Resources:

·      Your Mind Matters by John Stott

·      How to Embrace Your Sexuality Mini Course

·      Sign up for one on one coaching with me here.

·      Get on my email list to get updates on my book launch.

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

[1] C.S. Lewis. Personal Letter From Lewis to Keith Masson found in The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis, Volume 3: Narnia, Cambridge, and Joy 1950-1963. (New York: Harper Collins, 2007).

Jul 08, 2020
Breaking the Cycle of Sexual Exploitation: a Story of Restoration
52:37

Victim of sexual exploitation turned UCLA honor student, Harmony Grillo founded the non-profit Treasures in 2003 to help women and girls entrenched in sexual exploitation find freedom. She has provided training for the Department of Justice and the FBI and has helped launch outreaches in 120 cities worldwide. She shares her story in her memoir, Scars and Stilettos. This week on the podcast, we chat about how God has redeemed dreams in her life, how she learned to acknowledge the trauma bonds in her life and find freedom from sexual exploitation, and now help others find that same freedom.

 

Redeeming the Dream

  • Harmony shares some moments, big and small, where her dreams didn’t play out the way she wanted them to. God redeemed the dream every time.
  • “I’m living God’s promise of restoration.”

 

Trauma Bonds

  • Harmony’s history is full of abuse and trauma.
  • Later in her childhood, an older guy friend who she thought of as a protector became her abuser and exploiter when she worked in strip clubs.
  • Trauma bonds involve a power imbalance where there is erratic abuse and there are scattered times of good.

 

Freedom From Sexual Exploitation

  • She fondly remembers a girl she met at the time who loved her as she was and helped her on her journey to freedom.
  • “I didn’t start making those changes because someone told me that I should, I did it because it’s what I desired and what I felt like I was being invited to do as I walked out my path of growing in relationship with Him.”
  • She reflects on this time and realizes that she wouldn’t have had the same transformation she did if she was simply given a strict set of rules to follow.

 

Treasures

  • Treasures is Harmony’s faith-based organization, though it welcomes all religions. They meet everyone where they’re at and respect who they are as they are.
  • “What are we being invited into?”
  • “Sometimes the most therapeutic thing is a healthy, reciprocal relationship where you feel emotionally safe.”

 

Resources:

 

Resources on Women + Hyper-sexualization in Our Culture

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Jul 01, 2020
Insecure: Unpacking Attachment Styles
55:57

Relationship coach and expert Amanda Blair Hopkins is on the podcast this week for the second time ever! She is a previous guest on episode 36: How to Pursue Wholeness Before Pursuing a Relationship. She is a relationship coach for Lacy Phillips’s To Be Magnetic (who is a TRC Podcast guest as well: episode 46: How to be 100% in Your Worth.

 

It’s in the first few years of our lives that we learn how to relate and attach to the people we love. We learn patterns and behaviors that become so familiar to us they can be hard to identify. There are multiple different “attachment” styles in relationships. Do you know which one you are? Amanda unpacks what the four main attachment styles, and we both share personal stories as examples of our own. 

 

We also compromise in real time about the matching tattoo we’re going to get!

 

 

What Are Attachment Styles?

  • John Bowlby, author of Attachment and Loss, found the way you attach to your parents/caregivers in childhood is the way you attach to your romantic partners later in life.
  • Essentially, your attachment style is built on what you learned love is.
  • Changing your attachment style is possible, but it takes hard work and consistency.
  • “Realizing what your attachment style is offers you a lot of freedom. It gives you a way to remember that at your core you are whole. You are love. You are divine. That idea that you could be broken is false.”
  • Don’t let your type become an excuse not to grow. 

 

Breaking Down The 4 Attachment Styles

  1. Anxious (Insecure)
  • When you were a baby through 14 years old, it was the way your parents attuned to you. They weren’t always meeting your needs, so you learned that love is unstable and untrustworthy. 
  • If you’re anxious, work through this exercise here.
  1. Avoidant (Insecure)
  • The parent wasn’t getting their own needs met, so they didn’t meet their kid’s needs. The kid shuts down to their needs so they shut down their emotions to avoid rejection. They keep love at arm’s length to avoid being engulfed by it.
  • Ex: They’ll say they’re very independent because they learned early on to shut down their needs. In relationships, they’ll have walls up, fail to be vulnerable, and they may come on super strong in the beginning and then as soon as it gets real, they pull away.
  1. Anxious/Avoidant (Insecure)
  • A combination of Anxious and Avoidant.
  1. Secure
  • Parents were attuned to the child, so their needs were met and there was a trust there. Then, in adulthood, they trust that people mean what they say and that they will do right by them.

 

The Healing Journey

  • “It is progress, not perfect. You have to look for the progress because that is what will help you along this path.”
  • We talk about how sometimes you have to really run into the fire to learn your lesson, instead of going through a bunch of minor lessons that never really stick. Running into the fire could be an important part of your healing process. 

 

6 Practical Ways To Become Secure

  • Read Attachedand do more research on attachment theory.
  • Take inventory of your last five relationships: what happened, how you felt, what you feel you did, what you feel they did. Notice any patterns and moments when your attachment style activated in those relationships.
  • Walk through this process with a coach (Amanda takes one on one clients!)
  • If you’re anxious, start speaking up, communicating your needs, understanding your boundaries, and holding your boundaries.
  • If you’re avoidant, get out there, get seen, be vulnerable with friends or online.
  • Support all of this work with the energetic work Amanda teaches with To Be Magnetic.

 

Feeling Stuck?

  • Work with someone along the process—we were never meant to go through life alone. We all need guidance. 
  • “If you have hit a wall, get someone to help you climb over it or see that there’s no wall there, or climb underneath it or walk over it. That help will get you so much further, because you could stare at that wall for three years.”
  • A virtual ACA 12 Step rooms (Adult Children of Alcoholics) is a great place to start if finances prevent you from investing in the process. It is for anyone who experienced dysfunctional family relationships.

 

What happens when you get triggered into old behavior?

  1. Awareness
  2. Self Care
  3. Practice Calming Techniques i.e. EFT tapping, breathwork (link to Jackie V. podcast), meditation (like to meditation blog post), + anxiety relief exercises (link to blog post)

 

8 Resources to step into more Secure Attachment Styles

  • You can find Amanda on IG at @xoamandablairand her blog AmandaBlair.org.
  • To schedule a coaching session, go to tobemagnetic.comand book her through the one on one menu page. She is not a Christian, but I trust her to coach me because she honors that part of me.
  • Listen to Amanda’s first episode of The Refined Collective here.
  • Listen to Lacy Phillips’s episode of The Refined Collective here.
  • Buy the book Attachedhere.
  • Interested in learning more about EFT Tapping? Listen to Jackie Viramontez’s episode of the podcast hereand check out her Etched Daily resources here.
  • For a Christian perspective on attachment, check out How We Lovehere.
  • Check out our resources for anxietyand meditation for beginners.

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Jun 24, 2020
Are You Blocking Yourself From Love?
53:46

Jillian Turecki is a NYC based certified relationship coach, yoga teacher and writer. For 20 years, she has been studying the body and the mind. Fueled by an insatiable curiosity about what makes a relationship thrive. Through her work, Jillian has helped thousands revolutionize their relationship with themselves so that they can transform their love lives. Jillian is sought out for her compassionate, direct, and very authentic style of coaching and teaching. Under the tutelage of Tony Robbins and world-renowned family therapist Cloe Madanes, Jillian is certified by the Robbins Madanes Center for Strategic Intervention.

 

“Our entire experience of life boils down to relationship. From the intimacy we crave with a partner to the success we achieve through our work. None of it is possible without understanding our own psychology and the psychology of those we relate to. We never learned this at school, but it is learnable.” - Jillian Turecki

 

What does it mean to be blocked from love?

  • Your psychology determines your energy and how you show up in your life.
  • “Just because you really want something, doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s coming to you as quickly as you would like it to come.”
  • When we’re in a desperate place we’re blocking ourselves.

 

5 Ways to identify if you’re blocking yourself from love?

  • Are you afraid? Maybe you want a relationship, but you also associate a lot of pain with relationships.
  • Are you losing faith? Or maybe you’ve put yourself out there so much + are losing faith that it’ll happen.
  • What’s fueling your desire? Anxiety, desperation, fear?
  • Do you feel desperate for love?
  • Maybe even obsessed with a relationship? Like your life, purpose, and calling revolve around getting married. (aka…my life will start when I meet my person)?

 

How our beliefs impact our ability to attract love:

  • Whatever we believe, we’ll see evidence of it everywhere.”
  • You have the ability to challenge your beliefs: 
  • Is this really true? 
  • Is it possible you could be wrong?
  • We don’t do anything that doesn’t have a side benefit. 
  • Ask yourself these 2 questions: 
  • What’s the reward you’re getting for the beliefs? 
  • Why are you trying to keep yourself safe + protected?

 

A Roadmap to Clear the Way for Love: 6 Practical things you can do today.

  • Identifythe beliefs that are holding you back.
  • Break freefrom the addiction of surrounding yourself with people with the same limiting beliefs. Talk to people who don’t share those beliefs about love and are able to offer you a different perspective.
  • Identify the experiencesin your life that have led you here.
  • Ask yourself:Is your perspective freeing you or choking you?
  • Self-worth:When we obsess over love, it’s because deep down we doubt we’re worthy of it.
  • Enough-ness:Where are your fears of not being enough getting in your way?

 

#1 thing you can do to unblock love:

Learn how to be secure in your worth and make yourself happy as opposed to waiting for someone to make you happy:

  • Marriage is not the be all end all.
  • Mixed Messages: if someone is uncertain about you—there have to be boundaries.
  • “If a guy likes you, you’ll know. If he doesn’t, you’ll be confused.”

 

How buying into the myth of the ‘independent woman’ could be keeping you from love:

  • Are you independent, codependent, or interdependent?
  • Codependence: I can’t be happy unless you’re happy. I don’t know what my needs are. I can’t focus on my life because I’m only focusing on yours.
  • Independence:I don’t need anyone. If I’m vulnerable I’m weak.
  • Interdependence:I love you, but I don’t need you to make me happy.

 

Resources:

  • Check out Jillian’s website here, where you can join her Conscious Woman Membership.
  • Follow Jillian on Instagram at @jillianturecki
  • Have any questions for Jillian? Reach out to her here! Or email her atinfo@jillianturecki.com.

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

A HUGE shoutout to some of our newest Patreon supporters: Judy Mills, Amanda Curry, Jane Jackson, and LB! We are so grateful for you!

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Jun 17, 2020
The Gorgeous Grey: Gratitude in a Time of Grief with Ty Alexander
55:42

Today, I am chatting with the wonderful Ty Alexander! She is the author of Things I Wish I Knew Before My Mom Died, where she talks about how women of color need a space to discuss their mental wellness without judgement or shame. She has created a wellness community for women to do just that. In this episode, we chat about finding joy in life, how to approach grief and healing, how to care for yourself before others, and how to be a true ally right now.

 

Finding Joy + Healing

  • The Renaissance Woman: Ty talks about pursuing the things in life that bring her joy, recently that has been DJing.
  • “So I’m supposed to live until 90 or 100 and I only have one joyful thing that I like to do? That’s absurd.” 
  • One thing that has always brought Ty a lot of joy is writing. She discovered the therapeutic effects of writing and journaling at a young age.
  • Writing has helped her with both releasing her feelings as well as expressing them to others.
  • “I am solely operating as God’s vessel, so whatever lane He wants me to be in, whatever conversations He wants me to be a part of, I just kind of move through that.”
  • “I can be joyful and be sad too. They run parallel. You experience them both.”

 

Recovering From Another’s Addiction

  • Ty remembers the moment she realized her father’s addiction problems were resurfacing when her mother became sick.
  • “That was the first time that 1) I realized I need to put myself first and 2) the first time I realized that my dad was a human being first.”
  • Ty shares what forgiveness looks like for her, specifically when it came to forgiving her father who struggled with addiction. It didn’t bring closure.
  • “Forgiveness just means that I acknowledge that something happened, I acknowledge that it was bad, and I’m going to move on.”
  • “That baggage— while that’s my dad— that’s not my baggage. That’s your bag and should you need help figuring out how to unpack it, how to move it along, I can, but I can’t touch your bag.”
  • She shares the guilt she felt from herself when she didn’t go see her mother in her final moments. She is able to look back now and recognize that she made the right choice for herself.

 

Fighting Racism + Becoming an Ally

  • At the time of recording this, not many people were discussing the murder of Ahmaud Arbery. Ty shares that she felt like the only one using her voice for the unheard.
  • Ty shares that being an ally is more than just reposting on Instagram. If something she shares on social media inspires you, take that information and apply it to real life. Bring it out and use it at dinner table conversations.
  • “You have to be able to be brave enough to gut check your family members or your friends.”

 

Parting advice from Ty: “You really have to practice being able to serve you first in whatever capacity you need it.”

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Jun 10, 2020
Why Black Lives Matter
42:01

“For me, I believe that Black lives matter. That’s what I said. Anyone with a functioning brain understands that all lives matter. Anybody. But right now there is a portion of our community that is frustrated, and they are suffering, and they are hurting. So, as an empathetic Christian I’m gonna go and say I agree with the statement Black lives do matter. But I was glad some people disagreed with me, because I kept saying, do Black lives matter yes or no? yes but…I’m like there is no but. We disagree. Those are the same type of people that would have interrupted Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus would have been like, blessed are the poor…no Jesus blessed are all people. Since when does highlighting one issue disparage another? Are we not secure enough to be able to sit here and go issue by issue and talk about one without disparaging another? Of course all lives matter, but it’s okay to say Black lives matter. What’s wrong with you? This is not rocket science. All lives matter. No kidding. That’s why Black lives matter, because until all lives matter equally, we need to focus on this.”

-Carl Lentz, 2016

 

This is the most important episode I will ever release. I hope you approach it with an open heart.

 

Just recently:

George Floyd was murdered by a police officer while three other police officers stood by and did nothing.

Breonna Taylor was in her home in the middle of the night when police broke in, unannounced, and shot her to death.

Ahmaud Arbery was out for a run when two men chased him and shot him to death.

Christian Cooper was bird watching in Central Park when a woman threatened to call the police and say that an African American man was threatening her life. He was not.

 

It doesn’t stop there. The following Black men and women have been murdered by police:

Philando Castile

Atatiana Jefferson

Eric Reason

Natasha McKenna

Botham Jean

Walter Scott

Bettie Jones

Tamir Rice

Michael Brown

Dominique Clayton

Eric Garner

Trayvon Martin 

Tanisha Anderson

Sandra Bland

Freddie Gray

 

THESE ARE JUST THE NAMES WE KNOW. Do you know how hard it is to find a full list of Black people who have been murdered at the hands of police brutality? 

 

Here’s a brief history of the Black lives lost in our country over the past few years along with the #Blacklivesmatter gaining momentum:

 

·      2013: #Blacklivesmatter first appears on twitter

·      7/17/14: Eric Garner dies in NY after being arrested

·      8/9/14: Michael Brown is killed during an encounter with police officer in Ferguson, MO.

·      11/22/14: Tamir Rice is killed by police in Cleveland while playing with a toy gun

·      11/24/14: Announcement that there will be no indictment in Michael Brown case

·      4/19/15: Freddie Gray dies in Baltimore while in police custody

·      6/17/15: Charleston church shooting kills 9 people

·      7/13/15: Sandra Bland is found hung in Texas jail cell

 

STATS

·      99% of killings by police from 2013-2019 have not resulted in officers being charged with crime.

·      Unarmed Black people were killed by police at 5x the rate of unarmed white people in 2015.

·      Police killed at least 104 unarmed Black people in 2015— nearly 2x a week.

·      1 in 3 young Black men will be incarcerated in their life (compared to 1 in 17 white men).

·      13TH DOC: “The film’s premise is that while the 13th Amendment to the Constitution eliminated slavery and involuntary servitude, it in effect had an unintentional loophole that asserted “except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.”

·      Black people make up 6.5% of the American population but make up 40.2% of the prison population.

·      Our prison population went from less than 200k in 1970 to 2.3m today. This is what we refer to when we talk about mass incarceration.

 

THERE ARE PROVEN STRATEGIES that significantly reduce police killings, but very few Police Departments have adopted them. These are:

  1. Requirements that officers use all means other than shooting (decreases death by 25%)

  2. Requires all use of force be reported (decreases death by 25%)

  3. Bans chokeholds + strangleholds (decreases death by 22%)

  4. Has use of force continuum (decreases death by 19%)

  5. Requires de-escalation (decreases death by 15%)

  6. Duty to intervene if another officer uses excessive force (decreases death by 9%)

  7. Restricts shooting at moving vehicles (decreases death by 8%)

  8. Requires warning before shooting (decreases death by 5%)

*You can call your local representatives and demand these 8 things be instituted with your local law enforcement. Want to learn more? Click here: https://8cantwait.org

 

WHY DO BLACK LIVES MATTER? My Personal Reckoning: 2016

·      I didn’t realize my own white privilege for a long time. I felt better than the other white people when it came to bias and racism because I grew up in a broken home filled with drugs, addiction, affairs, and even lived in a town where I was a minority. The reality is I have loved Black culture for most of my life, but I have done very little to be an advocate for justice for my Black brothers and sisters. I’m so sorry for this.

·      I received a DM from a Black woman who encouraged me to diversify who I was interviewing on The Refined Woman. Almost all of my collaborations and interviews for the first few years of The Refined Woman were with white women. I was a white girl blogger.

·      In 2016 I also wrote an All Lives Matter blog post that fortunately never went live. I didn’t understand what it meant that Black Lives Matter. As a Christian I assumed didn’t all lives matter? Thank God I have a team, and thank God I didn’t go live with that painful article. I was very, very wrong. 

 

Black Lives Matter, and here’s why:

 

Jesus was a 1st Century Palestinian Jewish man. He had brown skin and was hated by the religious, and beaten and killed by law enforcement. If he was alive today in America, he’d be a minority immigrant who probably wouldn’t step foot inside white evangelical churches except to flip over tables. The Western Evangelical Church in America has become a religion for rich, advantaged, and privileged white people—which is the exact opposite of the roots of Christianity and the life of Jesus. Jesus hung out with the oppressed people of society, those ostracized, those who didn’t feel safe in the church—those who were judged and cast off. He fought for justice, restored dignity and humanity from the woman at the well, woman caught in adultery, to touching people with contagious diseases and engaging with people outside of the Jewish law which would have made him unclean in Jewish circles. But he didn’t care, because He was on a mission to do God’s work.

 

Friend, if you are a follower of Jesus and do not have a heart for justice, racial reconciliation and to see the systemic walls, pillars, and foundations of racism in our country to be dismantled, you are out of alignment with the heart of God.

 

Who does Jesus care about?

 

-       Prodigal Son returns: the jealous brother instead of the father rejoicing over the return + safety of his son. But don’t I matter—OF COURSE YOU MATTER, BUT YOUR BROTHER WAS LOST + NOW IS FOUND. 

 

-       Luke 15: Jesus leaves the 99 to go after the one sheep. He cares about the individual.

 

It’s time to get back in touch with the heart of Jesus. Do all lives matter? YES. But until Black lives matter—we better go after that. Jesus went after the one.

 

What can you do? 

 

#1: Acknowledge

If we don’t heal our past, it will follow us. And ours is HAUNTING US.

-Kat Harris

 

1.     Until we acknowledge the experience of what it means to be a Black person in America there is no chance at healing.

2.     When someone dies, you show up.

3.     “I don’t know the full story.” You don’t have to.

4.     “People are just reposting for attention…not for the right reasons.” You don’t know their hearts. And so what? Does that mean you get to stay silent?

5.     Here’s what’s true: in 1619 was when the first wave of Black people were kidnapped from Africa to become slaves in Jamestown. July 4th isn’t a celebration of independence for Black people. They weren’t free when those freedom bells rang. America was built on the backs of terrorism and genocide and slavery of Black people, people of color and indigenous people.

6.     If we don’t heal our past, it will follow us. And ours is HAUNTING US.

7.     We have to look back before we can move forward.

8.     One of the first things we can do is acknowledge our white privilege. What is white privilege and how do you know if you have it? Go through these statements.

 

#2: Get Curious

I STARTED NOTICING + GETTING CURIOUS:

·      Why did I have so few Black friends?

·      Why were there some Black people and people of color at my church but none on staff or leadership or in the decision-making rooms?

·      I changed churches because I wanted to be a part of a community with women in leadership, then I noticed almost every week at church I could count on one hand the number of Black people at my church…why?

·      Why were influential Black Christian people like Lecrae + Andre Henry leaving the church?

·      How come at my favorite salad place every single person in line buying was white and all the people working in the buffet are Black?

·      How come the expensive gym I had a membership to had mostly white members, and yet almost every single one of the people working there from front desk to maintenance are Black?

·      This started making me very uncomfortable. I didn’t know what to do—so I’d talk with my friends about it…but really I didn’t do much about it. I deeply regret this.

#3: PRAY + REPENT:

·      When have you been complicit, silent, and chosen ignorance out of comfort and convenience? Write it down, say it out loud, pray, and repent.

·      Psalm 13 is great to walk through lament.

·      Psalm 51 is great to walk through repentance.

#4: ACTIVATE:

·      Sign petitions for racial justice. change.org is a great start for this!

·      Talk with friends and family.

·      When you see racism, call it out.

·      Post on your platforms.

·      Call your local representatives and demand justice.

·      Support Black-owned businesses.

·      Donate to Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

·      Go to https://www.grassrootslaw.org to find out how you can support policing and justice in America.

·      Read this: 75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Justice by Corinne Shutack 

 

#5: ORGANIZATIONS TO SUPPORT:

·      Equal Justice Initiative (Bryan Stevenson)

·      Be the Bridge (Latasha Morrison) and her wonderful resource page, “Where Do I Start?”

·      WhereChangeStarted.com has a great anti-racism starter kit

·      The Innocence Project

·      To help pay bail for protestors in NYC, money can be Venmo’ed to @bailoutnycmay. 

·      City-specific bailouts.

·      ACLU

·      NAACP

·      UNCF

 

#6: READ:

“Stop asking us to give you books. Stop asking us to do research. Listen y’all were able to do mathematic equations through some Black women and then your own stuff and to be able to go to the moon, and put a flag in it and dance around and do the west coast strut. How in the world can you go from the earth to the moon and you can’t do research on the racial history that we need to fight in this country. I don’t want to be traumatized by teaching you history. I want you to grow up in your spiritual maturity, and grow up in your faith, and go on the sanctifying journey of overriding the patriotic way that we’ve learned history in America.” - Pastor Eric Mason

 

1.     White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo

2.     So You Want to Take About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

3.     The Person You Mean to Be by Dolly Chugh

4.     We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-Nehisi Coates

5.     How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

6.     I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness by Austin Channing Brown

7.     Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

8.     Woke Church by Eric Mason

9.     The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

10.  Jesus and the Disinherited by Howard Thurman

11.  Great Speeches by Frederick Douglass

12.  Waking up White and Finding Myself in the Story of Race by Debby Irving

13.  Ghetto by Mitchell Duneier

14.  More than Just Race: Being Black and Poor in the Inner City by William Julius Wilson

15.  Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America by Ibram X. Kendi

16.  A Testament of Hope by Martin Luther King Jr.

17.  Prejudice and Racism by James M. Jones

18.  Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People by Mahzarin R. Banaji

19.  Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America by Dr. Michael Eric Dyson

20.  I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

21.  All About Love by Bell Hooks

22.  Well-Read Black Girl by Glory Edim

23.  Go Tell it on the Mountain by James Baldwin

24.  Heavy: An American Memoir by Kiese Laymon

25.  There Will Be No Miracles Here by Casey Gerald

26.  Paradise by Toni Morrison

27.  Healing Racial Trauma by Sheila Wise Rowe

28.  Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

29.  The Lies that Bind: Rethinking Identity by Kwame Anthony Appiah

30.  The Very Good Gospel by Lisa Sharon Harper

31.  The Prophetic Imagination by Walter Brueggemann

32.  Prophetic Lament: A Call for Justice in Troubled Times by Dr. Soong-Chan Rah

33.  Divided by Faith: Evangelical Religion and the Problem of Race in America by Michael O. Emerson and Christian Smith

34.  Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson

35.  The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America by Richard Rothstein

36.  Human(Kind) by Ashlee Eiland

37.  A Day Late and a Dollar Short by Terry McMillan

38.  Kindred by Octavia E. Butler

39.  Beloved by Toni Morrison

40.  White Teeth by Zadie Smith

41.  Discerning the Voice of God by Priscilla Shirer

42.  Detours: The Unpredictable Path to Your Destiny by Tony Evans

43.  Unashamed by Lecrae

44.  Believe Bigger by Marshawn Evans Daniels

 

ARTICLE + WEBSITES

1.     Code Switch: Race in Your Face

2.     White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy McIntosh

3.     NYTimes An Antiracist Reading List compiled by Ibram X. Kendi

4.     Goodgooodgood.co Anti-racism resources compiled by Sarah Sophie Flicker and Alyssa Klein

5.     Buzzfeed’s An Essential Reading Guide for Fighting Racism by Arianna Rebolini

6.     1619 Project (NY Times) – an article series on the history and legacy of slavery in America (also a podcast below). There is a book project in the works to expand on what they’ve started.

7.     The America We Need (NY Times) – a NYT Opinion series that touches on justice in the midst of the pandemic.

8.     “Walking While Black” by Garnette Cadogan

 

WATCH:

1.     Pastor Eric Mason: Don’t Lose Heart: Why It’s Worth It to Fight for Racial Harmony Even When We Don’t See Progress

2.     Pastor Carl Lentz: I said, “Black Lives Matter”

3.     Dr. Robin DiAngelo’s talk on White Fragility at the University of Washington

4.     How to Deconstruct Racism One Headline at a Time, TEDtalk, Baratunde Thurston 

5.     How Racism Makes Us Sick, TEDtalk, David R. Williams 

6.     Racial Reconciliation, Latasha Morrison’s sermon, National Community Church 

7.     The Privilege Walk  

8.     Jon Tyson and David Bailey, class, race, reconciliation, and the Kingdom of God  

9.     Becoming Brave: Reconciliation Rooted in Prayer – “why do we need the church?” by Rev. Dr. Brenda Salter McNeil

 

 

Movies to watch on Netflix:

1.     13th

2.     American Son

3.     Dear White People

4.     See You Yesterday

5.     When They See Us

 

Movies to watch on Hulu:

1.     If Beale Street Could Talk

2.     The Hate U Give

 

Movies to rent:

1.     Black Power Mixtape: 1967-1975

2.     Clemency

3.     Fruitvale Station

4.     I am Not Your Negro

5.     Just Mercy

6.     Selma

7.     The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution

8.     BlacKkKlansman

9.     Burden

10.  The Color of Fear

 

Listen to these podcasts:

1.     NPR’s Code Switch

2.     Season 2 of In the Dark

3.     Hope & Hard Pills with Andre Henry

4.     Her with Amena Brown

5.     Truth’s Table Podcast

6.     Fights and Feelings with Joseph Solomon

7.     Anti-Racism with Andre Henry on The Liturgists

8.     Pod Save the People

9.     1619 Project Podcast

10.  Scene on Radio’s “Seeing White”

11.  Why Tho

 

The Refined Collective episodes on race:

1.     Anxiety, Race, and Healing Community with Nikia Phoenix

2.     I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness with Austin Channing Brown

3.     Why Being a ‘Good Person’ Prevents You From Being Better with Jeana Marinelli

 

People to follow:

1.     @austinchanning

2.     @theconsciouskid

3.     @blackcoffeewithwhitefriends

4.     @theandrehenry

5.     @colorofchange

6.     @rachel.cargle

7.     @ibramxk

8.     @mspackyetti

9.     @blklivesmatter

10.  @osopepatrisse

11.  @reformlajails

12.  @akilahh

13.  @showingupforracialjustice

14.  @tyalexander

15.  @tiffanybluhm

16.  @natashaannmiller

17.  @thefaithfeast

18.  @louisa.wells

19.  @abigaileernisse

20.  @jessicamalatyrivera

21.  @thegreatunlearn

22.  @laylafsaad

23.  @luvvie

24.  @pastorgabbycwilkes

25.  @elevateny

26.  @pastoremase

27.  @lecrae

28.  @whatisjoedoing

29.  @sarahjakesroberts

30.  @bishopjakes

31.  @devonfranklin

32.  @iammiketodd

33.  @amenabee

34.  @shaunking

 

You don’t have to read all 44 books in one day. You don’t have to start a non-profit. BUT YOU DO HAVE TO DO SOMETHING. I have not read every single one of these resources, but am making my way through them one by one. I am with you on the journey.

 

What are you committed to?

How are you going to ensure that you are no longer silent?

It’s time for white people to do something.

 

We are co-creators with God; it’s time to get to work.

Jun 04, 2020
Soulmates = Codependency (And Other Dating Myths Debunked)
58:52

I have the privilege of chatting with Debra Fileta of TrueLoveDates.com this week! She is a licensed professional counselor who specializes in dating, marriage, and relationship issues, as well as mental health disorders. She’s also the author of True Love DatesChoosing Marriage, and Love in Every Season! We chat about everything from the dating mistakes that are holding you back to why it’s okay for a woman to initiate a relationship.

 

“You’re not born knowing how to engage in healthy relationships; it’s something you have to work on and train and educate and grow.”

 

6 Reasons it’s Okay for a Woman to Initiate a Relationship

  1. Cultural Context.
  2. Mutually beneficial + reciprocal relationships are biblical.
  3. Healthy relationships are give and take.
  4. Pursuit is a human desire.
  5. Only responding to a person is not a two-way relationship.
  6. “Relationships are living, breathing things.”

 

“The problem is, when we go into relationships with that mentality that a woman shouldn’t initiate, you end up creating a culture of passive women.”

 

Soul Mates

  • Debra shares where the idea of soul mates really came from.
  • You are not half of a person until you meet someone.
  • Soul mates creates codependency.

 

“When we’re only responding, we’re not actually aware of what we want and need.”

 

Top 2 Dating Mistakes We’re All Making

  1. Not taking the risk to start a relationship. The #1 thing holding you back in singleness: FEAR
  • Fear of failure.
  • Fear of rejection.
  1. Desperate people make desperate decisions
  • When you feel desperate, don’t go on a dating spree. Look in.
  • Humans are magnetic.

 

2 Things Debra Would Tell Her Younger Self

  1. Work on your ish: Your past impacts your present if you don’t deal with it. Go to counseling. Do the work now— even if you’re single. Get whole.
  2. Save for a king-sized bed!!

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

May 27, 2020
8 Ways to Activate Genuine Self-Love (For Free)
01:03:45

Today on the podcast, I am chatting about wellness and self-love with Erin from Raw Beauty Talks. She shares what the heck self-love actually means, how to listen to your body, master your mindset, and understand what nourishes and energizes you. We also chat about body positivity, Beyoncé, and Erin’s own wellness journey and finding her voice in the body confidence conversation as a ‘skinny girl.’

 

What Does Self-Love Mean?

  • “Self-love isn’t a feeling, it’s a verb.”
  • We want self-love to be easy and comfortable, but it requires effort in order to grow.
  • “Can you give compassion for the woman you are and can you make choices to align with what that woman needs?”

 

8 Ways to Activate Genuine Self-Love

  • Get to know yourself— what make you thrive, what gets you excited?
  • Honoring the individual— can you give yourself compassion and make decisions that are in alignment with who you are and what you want?
  • Listen to your body— notice what helps you recharge.
  • Practice saying no— it will bring you freedom.
  • Routine— practicing self-love once won’t make an impact.
  • Implement— as you get to know yourself and how you’re wired.
  • Act like you love yourself NOW— the feeling will follow the action.
  • Give yourself grace— it’s a balance; the goal is not perfection.

 

3 Ways to Get on the Same Team as Your Body

  • Listen to your body— stop listening to these experts and tune in to your hunger and fullness signals, learn what type of movement your body is needing, maybe it’s a walk maybe it’s a workout.
  • Master your mindset— are the thoughts you’re having empowering you or holding you back? Find an empowering belief that feels possible.
  • Understand what nourishes and energizes you— make a list of things that make you feel high energy and another list of things that make you feel low energy.

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out!

May 20, 2020
Who Should I Date?
59:59

 

I am so thrilled to be talking with Phylicia Masonheimer this week! She is an author, speaker, and theologian who just released her book Stop Calling Me Beautiful. We talk about dating, if marrying a Christian really non-negotiable, what things we should be looking for in a partner, and a whole lot more.

 

The Way They Met

·      Phylicia shares how she didn’t see her husband as her type when she met him, but he loved her so well and he loved God.

·      She shares the moment she decided to give it a shot with Josh, who is now her husband.

 

Do I need to be led spiritually by someone else?

·      Do we need to be at the same place on our spiritual journey with the man we date and marry? 

·      The church taught us that we need to be led my men who act as our spiritual leaders, but ‘spiritual leader’ isn’t mentioned anywhere in the Bible.

·      Phylicia shares the difference between complementarian views and the egalitarian views within Christianity. 

·      “We’re after the leader heart… not just somebody who has collected a lot of Bible knowledge.”

 

Questions to Ask the Guy You’re Getting to Know

1.     Does he desire God? Does he desire to know God? Does he desire to go deeper?

2.     Is he dependent on his friends or parents to be spiritual?

3.     What are his sexual boundaries and standards?

 

3 Things to Look For in a Partner

4.     Loves God

5.     Works hard

6.     Is teachable

·      “If he has those three things, then he can grow, he can change, he can develop + adapt. But it’s really hard to be tied to an unbeliever, a lazy man, or a stubborn man.”

 

Why you should date someone that share your faith / worldview?

·      Phylicia recalls the time she was dating an unbeliever. She was unsure if she should move forward, so she asked God for a sign. She received three.

·      “You’ve known the truth all along.”

·     2 Corinthians 6:14 — “Do not be yoked together with unbelievers.”…with fundamentally different worldviews you’re pulling in different directions—you want to be with someone who is moving forward with you.

 

Resources

·      You can buy her book, Stop Calling Me Beautifulhere.

·      Keep up with her at PhyliciaMasonheimer.com or on Instagram at @phyliciamasonheimer.

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

May 13, 2020
What is Sober Curious?
56:06

Jen Batchelor is the co-founder and CEO of Kin Euphorics, which she created as a response to shifts in her own lifestyle, as well as the lifestyle of her co-founder. Kin is an alternative beverage company that will change the way you approach social drinking. Jen helps unpack the social drinking movement, how adaptogens and nootropics can give your body what it really needs, and how you can approach sober living.

 

Why Do You Drink?

  • When people are asked about their own drinking behavior, they never have a solid answer. There remains a stigma around choosing to be sober.
  • Jen shares the moment when she realized that even though she was putting thought into everything she put into her body, her drinking would negate all of it.
  • “I don’t want to break even on wellness.”

 

The Basics

  • Euphorics represent a new category of pleasure priming drinks. “You can have your cake and drink it too.”
  • Adaptogens are roots and herbs that help you fight off those Sunday scaries.
  • Nootropics help balance the chemicals of the mind. It helps with synthesizing thought, processing memory, and enhancing focus.
  • Using all of this, Kin Euphorics helps restore balance in the body.

 

What Holds People Back from Sobriety

  • Fear of labels and stigmas.
  • Fear of leaning into discomfort.
  • Fear of what you’ll find out— but knowledge is power.
  • “We all, in all facets of our lives, should be actively testing our limits so we can understand and feel the resistance and grow from that.”
  • Being able to be vulnerable to human experiences and sharing it with others.

 

5 Practical Tips for the Sober Curious

  • “Is this robbing me or hindering me from an opportunity or the energy I need to pursue my dreams? Is this getting in my way?”
  1. Take stock of your social rituals.
  2. Assess who you have around you and don’t be afraid to make some cuts.
  3. Are your habits in alignment with and pushing you towards your dreams? If not, be willing to try an ‘elimination diet.’
  4. Get clear about your calling. What are your greatest dreams and how can you move towards that with clarity, integrity, and intention?
  5. Commit to your greatest potential and rise to that. Invite people into journey with you.

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

 

May 06, 2020
How to Invest Into Your Marriage (When You’re Single)
01:00:11

This week, I’m chatting with Jeremy and Adrienne Camp. Jeremy and Adrienne are singers and songwriters who met while on tour. Jeremy is GRAMMY-nominated and Adrienne was the lead singer of the Christian rock band the Benjamin Gate and later recorded two solo albums. The two have been married for 17 years have 2 daughters and a son. Their movie I Still Believe was released in March— it’s about Jeremy’s marriage with his first wife Melissa. Jeremy and Adrienne just released their book In Unison

I drilled them, y’all. We talked about their story, getting stuck in the friend zone, and if sexual attraction can grow between people who start out as friends. Plus, in 17 years of marriage—how do you fight well? And how can we set ourselves up for our future today

 

Marriage

  • They recall not seeing each other as their types when they first met.
  • We talk about whether sexual attraction can grow or if it has to be there from the start.
  • “There needs to be a relationship of depth and honor and respect there in order for me to love him with my body.”
  • Fighting well: she needs to figure it out right away and he needs time to step back and process. “We had to learn those places of grace for each other along the way.”

 

6 Ways to Sow Into Your Marriage

  1. Stay connected to Jesus.
  • “If things are dry in my relationship with the Lord, essentially they are dry everywhere else.”
  • Adrienne prays: “Jesus, be new to me!”
  1. Choose to have a soft heart towards each other. It’s a choice.
  2. Be intentional about dating.
  3. Find things you both love and do them together.
  4. Create space for heart connection.
  • Connect not just physically, but on a heart level.
  • How is your heart?
  • How are we doing?
  • Are there things I’ve done that have frustrated you?
  • What can we work on?
  1. Be willing to do the work!!!
  • “We look ahead and we want the harvest, but we’re not willing to do the hard work today.”

 

How to Invest Into Your Marriage (When You’re Single)

  • Learn to deal with conflict in your friendships.
  • Deal with your own issues. Be willing to do the work.
  • Seek God. “When we’re seeking Him to find a reward, we’re not going to find that. He’s already given us the greatest reward.”

 

Resources

  • Watch the movie I Still Believe here.
  • Listen to the movie’s soundtrack here.
  • You can buy Jeremy and Adrienne’s book, In Unisonhere.
  • You can buy Jeremy’s book, I Still Believehere.
  • You can buy Adrienne's book, Even Me, here.
  • Keep up with them at @adiecamp and @jeremycampofficial on Instagram.
  • Check out their work with Speaking Louder here.

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Apr 29, 2020
Why Being a 'Good Person' Prevents You From Being Better
01:01:52

 

“I am learning every day to allow the space between where I am and where I want to be to inspire me and not terrify me.” – Tracee Ellis Ross

 

Jeana Marinelli is my guest this week and we are talking about racism, bias, white privilege, how to develop a growth mindset, and identifying the myth of the ‘good person’ and how it is keeping us stuck. Jeana is a leadership development professional. Jeana is always asking the important questions of ‘why are things the way they are?’ and ‘how can we be better?’

 

The Myth of the ‘Good Person’

  • “It’s this binary notion that is seductive and it’s misleading. You’re either a good person or you’re not. We know that humans are more complex than that.”
  • We chat about how to confront racism within ourselves and understand our blind spots.
  • The growth mindset involves acknowledging that you aren’t a good person but that you are always in the process of bettering yourself.
  • “Women show stronger implicit gender bias against women than men do and it’s because of who gets to tell our stories.”

 

7 Ways to Foster a Growth Mindset

  1. Look at all the media you consume and look for ways to diversify, especially when it comes to race and gender.
  2. Take ownership to learn more about biases and topics that make you most uncomfortable.
  3. Notice your physical queues where your discomfort comes.
  4. Practice deep listening— listening to understand and not to respond.
  5. Thank anyone who points out inequities without seeking a cookie.
  6. Get better at noticing your own mistakes.
  7. Learning to pronounce someone’s name.

 

Books to Read

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out!

Apr 22, 2020
The Fertility Series: Egg Freezing 101
55:53

 

Welcome back to the fertility series! This time around, I’m chatting with fertility physician Dr. Natalie Crawford from Aspire Fertility all about egg freezing. She is also the host of As A Woman Podcast, which is all about fertility, female empowerment, and leadership. Personally, I have spoken on the podcast about feeling that biological clock ticking and have been thinking about egg freezing a lot so I was really grateful to Dr. Natalie for sharing her wisdom with us— let’s dive in.

 

We answer questions like:

  • When is a good time to freeze your eggs?
  • Is freezing your eggs really a ‘fire insurance’ plan?
  • Which is a more viable option:  IVF or Egg Freezing.
  • How long does freezing your eggs take + how to plan for it.
  • How much it costs (b/c umm…that’s a huge part of this process).
  • And lots more…

 

Learning Your Body

  • Dr. Natalie quickly realized how little women knew about their own bodies.
  • “Every woman would say, ‘I wish I had known this earlier.’”
  • Did you know 1 out of 8 women struggle with infertility— they just aren’t all sharing their stories.
  • Most women ignore their infertility problems for a while because they feel a sense of failure, fear, and denial.

 

Understanding the Process

  • As you age, your eggs decrease in both quality and quantity.
  • Dr. Natalie explains the value of AMH testing—a very affordable + often covered by insurance test that tells you how what your egg count + health is like.
  • There are diet + lifestyle changes you can make to keep your eggs as healthy as possible like decreasing red meat and processed food (more on that in the podcast).
  • “This whole process is stressful— we can’t make it stress-less. But how can you feel better about it? By feeling really well informed.”

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out!

Apr 15, 2020
Why Self-Care Is More Crucial Now Than Ever Before
48:11

 

This week I’m chatting with repeat guest Kate Eskuri from The Foundation Blog!! She was on the podcast last year talking about all things periods and it is our most downloaded episode EVER! (You can listen to it here.) Kate is a registered nurse and is currently getting her PhD. This time around, we’re talking about how to get grounded in the midst of overwhelm. Also, how do we even be healthy during this time? And practically speaking, are there certain things I should be doing or avoiding right now? Bottom line, though: there is no one right way to spend your time in quarantine.

 

5 Ways to Foster a Healthy Relationship with Food

“Your nutrition may not look how it ‘normally’ does… nothing looks ‘normal’ right now.”

  1. Shop with intention—buy things that last a long time and are versatile.
  2. Cook with thought— do you have food that will go bad by next week? Eat that first.
  3. Get resourceful—really take stock of all the food you already have. What if instead of going grocery shopping you got creative?
  4. Donate any extra food you may have— some people aren’t able to stock up.
  5. Use healing ingredients—turmeric, ginger, garlic, echinacea tea, elderberry tea.

 

Structure Creates Freedom: Rituals to Practice to Freedom

  • The self-care question you need to ask yourself during this season: “What do YOU need during this quarantine?”
  • Self-care is no longer an option— it’s a priority.
  • Want to activate self-care? Write down five things that bring you comfort and joy. A self-care list! 

 

Practical Grounding Rituals

  • What does it mean to be grounded: “It’s that inner sense of calm even though the outside world might feel a little scattered.”
  • Journal through these 5 questions to shift  from overwhelm to peace in less than 5 minutes:
  1. What are five things I can see? 
  2. What are four things I can feel? 
  3. What are three things I can hear? 
  4. What are two things I can smell right now? 
  5. What is one thing I can taste?

 

3 Ways to Practically Ground Yourself:

  • Journaling is something you can do for even just a few minutes to ground yourself.
  • Take a seat, close your eyes, physically place your hands on the crown of your head, and lightly press down. Take a few deep breaths and you will feel yourself settle.
  • Eat root vegetables. It may sound weird and woo-woo, but give it a try.

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Apr 08, 2020
Is Love Really Blind? Everything I Learned From Love Is Blind
36:56

 

If you aren’t using your quarantine time to watch Love is Blind, get on that right now! Basically, it is a Netflix reality TV show where all these men and women go on speed dates. At the end of 10 days there are proposals, and then another 30 days later are the weddings!! Ummm…crazy right? The plot twist: they do not see each other face to face until after they are engaged. There are major spoilers ahead, so catch up quick before listening if you don’t want things spoiled for you!

 

3 Things I love about Love is Blind

  1. Intentions are Out in the Open: Everyone showed up to the show knowing why they were there. Ya, some people were probably looking to become insta-famous. But in reality, if you agree to be on the show, you agree that marriage is the outcome you’re looking for. Knowing what you want in a dating relationship, and communicating that is so freeing.
  2. Heart before the Physical: Sexual attraction is such a beautiful part of a relationship, but it’s not the only thing. Getting to know someone’s heart before the physical helps you discern if they’re a good fit or not for you. 
  3. Clarity: Since the interactions are so focused and limited, people had to dive into some deep stuff early on. You have to know what you want. Knowing what you want gives you clarity to figure out quicker if the person you’re dating is a good fit for you or not.

 

Lessons Learned from Love is Blind:

  1. When you’re in, you’re in: Lauren and Cameron taught me that when you’re in… You. Are. In. 
  2. Men don’t want a mother, they want a partner.
  3. Don’t ignore the red flags.
  4. Give it a try, but if it’s not there, it’s not there.
  5. Work. On. Your. Ish.
  6. Be the person you want to attract.
  7. Go to therapy.
  8. Be willing to do the work.
  9. Be Clear + Surrender: Be clear about what you want and surrender to the process of getting to know someone. We put too much pressure on dating.

 

Questions to Ask Yourself in Dating?

  • Do you know what you’re looking for?
  • Are you the type of person you’re looking for?
  • What do you need to work on?

 

Finally, I answer on the episode whether or not I’d consider going on the show…you’ll have to tune into find out my thoughts! 

 

Resources

  • Remember the time I went on a blind date? And it was filmed? For YOUTUBE? Yep. That happened. Here’s the video if you missed it.
  • Head over to @therefinedcollective on Instagram to share your thoughts on all things Love is Blind… we are dying to know!

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Apr 01, 2020
How to Work from Home (Without Going Crazy)
25:57

 

Man COVID-19?!?! Ughhh… Am I right!? I know working from home can be a major adjustment in any season, but since so many of us have transitioned home in this season I had to talk about it! I’ve been working from home for 10 years, and promise you it’s possible to work from home, be productive, AND not go crazy. It’s just going to take some time, intention, and lots of boundaries! Today’s episode is all about my best tips for working from home (without going crazy).

 

8 Ways to Create Structure

  1. Leave your bedroom— let it remain a sanctuary free from work.
  2. Get dressed— even if absolutely nobody is going to see you.
  3. Set up an office space— setting is everything.
  4. Block schedule— it’ll keep you focused. 
  5. Make a list each morning and prioritize a daily top 3.
  6. Schedule breaks and commit to that boundary.
  7. When you’re done, put it away. Structure creates freedom.
  8. Keep and protect normal business hours— I dare you to give yourself 12 hours away from email.

 

Set Up Connection Points Throughout Your Day

  • If you normally work in an office, do a virtual check in with your team in the morning to keep the natural rhythm.
  • If you’re an entrepreneur, reach out to fellow entrepreneurs for advice.

 

3 Free Resources to stay Connected to your Team: 

  1. Slack
  2. Google Hangouts
  3. Zoom

 

3 Productivity Boundaries

  • Phone hacks: put it on do not disturb, turn off iMessage, download the app Freedom for social media, or even delete the social media apps off your phone! 
  • Check your email four times a day and block it in your schedule.
  • I personally use the POMODORO Method. It involves working for 25 min, then taking a 5-min break. I do that four times and then take a 15-min break. Repeat.

 

Bottom line, though: have grace with yourself. You may not get as much done, and guess what? That’s okay. I hope this has helped you work from home whether you’re always working from home or if COVID-19 is forcing you to develop a new routine. 

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Mar 25, 2020
How to Own Your Voice: A Conversation on Consent
01:03:38

 

TRIGGER WARNING: We share some stories of trauma we have experienced in the past. This may not be a good episode to listen to with kiddos around. Know that if you have experiences trauma, you are not alone!

 

Tiffany Bluhm is the author of She Dreams and Never Alone; she also hosts the podcast “Why Tho” with Ashley Abercrombie (who was also on the podcast— check out her episode here.) Today, we are chatting about consent, whether it’s in the boardroom or the bedroom. We talk about the more nuanced topics like what messages clothing sends and are non-verbal cues enough?

 

Power Dynamics + Consent

  • What is consent? Vocalized agreement for something to happen between both parties, whether it is harmful or not. Consent involves concern and care also.
  • There has historically been an abuse of power when it comes to consent.

 

4 Questions to Ask Yourself in an Uncomfortable Situation

  • Is this okay?
  • How can I be an active participant in this situation?
  • What do I do to prevent this from happening?
  • What is my role as a bystander, as a friend, to anyone else it’s happening to?

 

6 Ways to Own Your Voice

  • Know your response to trauma: fight, flight, or freeze.
  • Find ways to create boundaries with the person creating discomfort/trauma.
  • Let go of the fear of seeming disagreeable.
  • Don’t let the little things slide— those inches quickly turn into miles.
  • Reporting behavior is hard and scary, but it is worth it and we owe it to ourselves.
  • Document the situation in any way you can— even by taking a picture.

 

Resources

  • If you have more questions on these topics, visit org.
  • The EEOC is a good place to report behavior if you are uncomfortable going to HR.
  • Keep up with Tiffany at com and @tiffanybluhm.

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out!

 

Mar 18, 2020
How Meditation Can Change Your Life
01:01:05

 

Do Christians meditate? What exactly is meditation and how do I practice it?  What is mindfulness? And what about breath work? Today, Jackie Viramontez is going to share her answers to all of the above! We’re talking about practices you can implement into your life to help you heal from anxiety, trauma, and fear. 

 

Starting Young

  • Jackie reflects on a major childhood trauma and loss that led her to develop anxiety as well as OCD.
  • From there, she began her journey with therapy, EMDR and meditation and healing.
  • “Our memories and thoughts are found all over our body.”

 

Meditation

  • Meditation is a way to interrupt the patterns in your life to center yourself.
  • Jackie shares when the best time to meditate is (you gotta listen to find out!).
  • “We are designed for our stories to change.”

 

Breath Work

  • Making your exhales just one second longer than your inhales will slow your heart rate and help so much. Bonus: rest your tongue on the floor of your mouth as you breathe.
  • Jackie talks about how pressure points can release tension as well.
  • “It’s very hard to be up in your head when you’re breathing like that.”

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Mar 11, 2020
The Fertility Series: 10 Years of Infertility Led to This Moment
56:38


We are starting a new series on the podcast all about fertility! We are going to cover everything from IVF, to egg freezing, to adoption, miscarriage, and everything in between. We are first going to chat about IVF. My dear friend Faith Ramos shares her journey through 10 years of infertility before IVF gave her two children.

 

The Love Story

  • Faith met her husband Angel at college when they were both 18 years old.
  • After a few years of ‘not—not trying to have kids’, once they hit 30, they started to wondering what was going on..
  • She opens up about what it’s like getting questions about why they didn’t have kids yet.

 

IVF + An Answered Prayer

  • IVF involves putting the egg + sperm together in a petri dish to create an embryo.
  • The price for this runs between $20k and $30k— so it is not really accessible to many.
  • Faith + Angel struggled to find funds as new business owners (plus her mother was sick).
  • In true God fashion—the money came in an unlikely and unexpected way.

 

Getting Pregnant

  • “Early on, Angel and I knew that this was God’s story.”
  • She remembers shifting her mindset from “why me?” to a heart of gratitude.
  • “God is faithful, however that looks.”
  • Listen to the episode to hear Faith describe the moment she first met her son.
  • Feeling discouraged? “The journey just might be different than what it seems. God is able to do anything, but his will is different for everyone.”

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out!

Mar 04, 2020
What Happens When Your Identity Is Stripped From You?
01:03:41

 

NLP practitioner and certified nutritional consultant and coach to Olympic athletes and A-list celebrities Adam Cobb is on the podcast today. We started recording right in the middle of a vulnerable ‘clearing the air' moment between us personally. It just felt important to share some good ol’ conflict resolution with you.  The crux of our chat was about ‘what happens when the thing we’re known for gets stripped from us.' Who do we become when our identity becomes rocked? Where do we turn to? How do we move through it?

 

Loss of Identity

  • Just a few hours before Adam was scheduled to give a talk on movement and mindset, he had a basketball accident and got an ACL tear and meniscus rupture.
  • As an adult having to live back home with his parents with little mobility was completely humbling.

 

Asking for Help

  • He opens up about his decision to go to therapy and why he resisted it in the past. Even then, it took him three sessions to surrender to the process and really show up.
  • He remembers a pivotal moment when he was standing with a bowl of chili in his hands because he couldn’t figure out how to bring it to the table while on crutches.

 

Healing Physically + Emotionally

  • “Real healing looks like asking for help.”
  • He shares how his lack of vulnerability created tension in his romantic relationships.
  • He was challenged by his peers to think “what does silence sound like right now?”
  • I was operating in my head then; I am operating in my heart now.”

 

Resources

 

Struggling with online dating? Kait Warman of The Heart of Dating and I are hosting a live online workshop just for you on February 25, 2020. Grab your ticket here!

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

Feb 26, 2020
The Sex Talk: When, How, + Why To Have It In Dating
46:44

 

Hi, friends! We’re having the sex talk on the podcast today!! Are you waiting for marriage to have sex? Not sure when to bring it up in dating? Or how? We’re going to chat about that today, because I watched The Bachelor on Monday and have quite a few thoughts on this! Peter is the Bachelor and it’s causing quite the commotion with Madison. We’re one week away from engagement and they still haven’t had ‘the talk.’

 

Why I was afraid to tell guys I wasn’t having sex until marriage:

  1. Fear of rejection
  2. I assumed if you were a Christian, you weren’t having sex—I also thought everyone wore purity rings too.
  3. I was shut down to my sexuality + desire—if I can’t accept my own sexuality, how can I accept another, and how can I enter into an adult consensual relationship if I’m unwilling to talk about this stuff?
  4. I didn’t know my why so I was afraid of bringing it up because I couldn’t really explain why except that’s what Christians do.

 

3 things to think before you have ‘the talk’

  1. Know your why
    1. The difference between: I’m not a smoker + I’m trying to quit.
    2. Your decision has to be internally motivated
      1. What does sex mean to me?
      2. What is god’s heart for intimacy + sex?
      3. What is my heart for intimacy + sex?
      4. Why or why not is this a value for me?
    3. QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF

 

  1. Assume nothing

Just because they share your faith does not mean you have the same physical boundaries.

No kissing until marriage to everything but penetration—including anal—to some people who love Jesus + choose to have pre-marital sex.

 

  1. Zero shame

Rejection is protection!!

It may make my dating pool smaller, but it makes it stronger.

 

WHEN: By date 3…although NYC dating culture moves quickly…so it’s not odd if I bring it up on the 1st date.

 

3 Reasons to Have the Sex Talk Early on

  1. Set yourself up for success

If you’re not having sex before marriage — this may help set-up physical boundaries in dating.

What didn’t work for me…getting naked on the first date.

 

  1. Be kind

If I’m getting what I want—but if he thinks this is leading elsewhere it’s in a sense being dishonest.

 

  1. Create a culture of honesty + communication

The only way a relationship can last + build trust is through communication.

As a couple you get to decide what boundaries will work for you—It’s an ongoing conversation.

A boundary might have worked in the past, but things may shift.

 

I HAVE AN EASY OUT: I talk about this stuff professionally.

However, the more I’ve shared, the easier it’s become. it’s a non-issue for me.

 

Here is what I say:

“Hey, I just want to be upfront. I don’t have sex until marriage + that’s not like a cute thing I say…I really mean it. So I just wanted to throw that out there + see where you’re at + what you think!”

 

 

RESOURCES FOR NAVIGATING YOUR WHY?

Dr. Celeste Holbrook

The Bible: Flee from Sexual Immorality

Kat’s ‘Why’

Kat’s conversation on God is Grey

 

Struggling with online dating? Kait Warman of The Heart of Dating and I are hosting a live online workshop just for you on February 25, 2020. Grab your ticket here!

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Feb 19, 2020
How a Podcast Saved a Marriage
01:04:23

 

This week, my real-life friends Jessie and Gerard Pepper are on the podcast! You may know them from their own podcast Marriage is Funny. They launched the podcast after they were having a serious discussion about divorce. (Spoiler alert: they are still married.) We chat about the vulnerability that brought them out of that dark time in marriage and they share some actionable steps to tend to the meaningful relationships in your life.

 

Talking It Out

  • Their podcast isn’t about marriage advice…it’s about creating a space to process through their own difficulties and problems.
  • “The points of tension can be what draws you back closer to each other and strengthens the bond between you.”

 

Growing in Understanding

  • We talk about why it’s so scary to tell someone what you really want.
  • Gerard opens up about his tendency to not share emotions. “It feels really dangerous.”
  • “Beauty comes from complexity.”

 

Setting an Example

  • They wish the married couples in their lives had been more honest about marriage. Amen to that, because marriage even to the best person is going to be HARD!
  • “Our marriage has turned into something that we are tending to and constantly learning about and constantly trying to enrich.”

 

Keep Up With The Peppers

  • Check out their website at com.
  • Follow them on Facebook and join their podcast’s private FB group.
  • Follow them on IG at @meetthepeppers and @styleandpepper.
  • Watch their video series about the three marriage myths that nearly ruined their relationship— they gave you special access here.

 

Struggling with online dating? Kait Warman of The Heart of Dating and I are hosting a live online workshop just for you on February 25, 2020. Grab your ticket here!

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Feb 12, 2020
Ever Feel Like a Fake? Tackling Imposter Syndrome 101
52:03

 

Do you remember how much you loved Dr. Therese Mascardo on episode 58 of the podcast “How to Marie Kondo Your Mental Health”? Because I do. And I loved having her on. So guess what? We got her back on the podcast for you! She is a psychologist and the founder of Exploring Therapy. This episode, we are chatting about imposter syndrome, because the imposter syndrome can be so real sometimes, you guys!

 

The 4 Elements of Imposter Syndrome

  1. Feelings of inadequacy; 
  2. Second guessing yourself; 
  3. Dismissing accomplishments and praise as luck, timing, or being deceptive; 
  4. The thoughts you have lead to fear, anxiety, and perfectionism.

 

What Causes Imposter Syndrome?

  • We all have insecurities, but our environment, culture, and upbringing can make those insecurities stronger in our minds.
  • We aren’t seeing other people’s insecurities, so we think we are wrong for having them.
  • “Imposter syndrome is created out of the things you tell yourself.”

 

#1 Thing To Do to Tackle Imposter Syndrome

  • Identify your self talk and figure out what narratives need correction. 
  • “It’s not about succeeding 100% of the time, it’s just that you deserve as much of a chance, even if you fail.”
  • “Those who are the first to do something often suffer from imposter syndrome the most.”

 

The Importance of Community

  • “If you can receive criticism, you need to be open to receiving praise.”

 

Resources

  • Listen to Lizzo— Dr. Therese’s orders!! It will seriously help you with self-talk.
  • Join the Roundtable waitlist here.
  • Check out Dr. Therese’s website and Instagram.

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

I want to say a very special THANK YOU to our new friends in our Patreon community: Meg Poore, Justice Barker, and Francesca Pittaluga! You are truly the reason we are able to invest so much of our time and resources into this podcast!

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

Feb 05, 2020
Confused by Enneagram? We're Breakin' It Down for You
01:09:08

 

Enneagram is having such a moment. Chances are you either think “that person is such a [insert number here]” any time you meet someone new ,or you think “what the heck is this enneagram I keep hearing about all the time?” Well, today we have an EXPERT on the podcast: Beth McCord, the founder of Your Enneagram Coach. She helps explain the different types and how you can learn to grow and understand both yourself and others through this tool.

 

What is the Enneagram?

  • The enneagram suggests that there are nine different personality types.
  • There are four core motivations for each type: fear, desire, weakness, and longing.
  • The key is to learn the ‘why’ behind all of your decisions and use it as a tool for growth.
  • “Real transformation means we have to take the time to look inward.”

 

The 9 Types

  • 1: Moral Perfectionist
  • 2: Supportive Advisor
  • 3: Achiever
  • 4: Romantic Individualist
  • 5: Investigative Thinker
  • 6: Loyal Guardians
  • 7: Entertaining Optimist
  • 8: Protective Challengers
  • 9: Peaceful Mediators

 

Enneagram + Dating

  • It doesn’t matter what number dates what number, the key to success is both being healthy in your own numbers.
  • The biggest piece of advice: Look for someone who is willing to grow.
  • “We don’t want to use the enneagram as a sword or a shield.”

 

Resources

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

Jan 29, 2020
Dating Tips, Deal Breakers and Myths
55:59

 

Sliding into DMs is my favorite. Basically Instagram stalk people and ask them to be on my podcast. But you know what? It works! And now I have loads of virtual friends. Bam. Today, I’m am chatting with Stephanie May Wilson. She has such a heart for single women, so I am so excited for us to walk through some of the top questions that women send us every day.

 

DATING 101: Types + Deal Breakers

  • We chat about how guys are often more attractive in real life than in their online photos BUT if they say they are 6 feet tall, they are almost certainly a full two inches shorter.
  • We may have a type, but we have to stop making our searches so narrow—the perfect man may not be who you pictured him to be.

 

DATING 101: It’s A Curb, Not A Cliff

  • Real talk: we need to be as intentional about dating as we are with our career or fitness.
  • We chat about the pressure to have meet cutes and the number one frustration women come to her looking for answers to.
  • “You deserve someone who wants to be with you.”
  • What do you do with all this hope and confusion? Live this season of your life to the fullest. Show up!

 

DATING MYTH: There Are No Good Guys?

  • “There are better things we can do with that focus that actually get us to where we want to be.”
  • Find ways to put yourself out there more. Just get involved in your community.
  • Disappointment is part of the dating process. It’s getting you ready for marriage, which is signing up to be disappointed by the same person for your whole life.

 

Feeling discouraged? God hasn’t forgotten you. It isn’t too late. You are not less than others because you are single. You are not unlovable. You don’t have to figure this out alone. Keep up with Stephanie at StephanieMayWilson.com, where you can find her podcast (Girls Night) and her Instagram (@smaywilson). She has a prayer journal called Every Single Moment—you can find it here!

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out!

 

Jan 22, 2020
Comparison Sucks + Other Thoughts About 2019
44:39

 

Welcome back to The Refined Collective podcast! Did you notice our new intro music? We’re so excited about it. On this first solo show of the new year, I’m chatting about all of the lessons I learned in 2019 (because it taught me some big lessons), my vision for 2020, and of course before I do all of that I share all of my favorite pop culture tidbits with you!

 

Lessons Learned

  • Comparison sucks.
    • My Challenge to You: What if you used someone else’s breakthrough as evidence of what’s possible as opposed to getting stuck in comparison, jealousy, and a victim mentality? How would doing that impact your life?
  • Celebrate your wins.
    • Life is busy. Often before we finish the one thing, we’re already chasing the next. I don’t know about you, but this feels exhausting. What if before rushing off to the next goal, we allowed ourselves to pause, acknowledge, and celebrate the wins—no matter how big or small.
  • I can only change me.
    • Much to my dismay as much as I try to change others, the only person I can truly change and take responsibility for is myself. Instead of spending so much time focusing on other people’s drama, what if you used that time to look inward, and noticed areas in your own life that needed some extra love?
  • God lives in the space between.
    • Life is a “both and,” not an “either or.”

 

2020 Vision

  • (Get it? 2020 vision? 20/20 vision?)
  • What if you had the courage to receive and believe that you deserved to be here?
  • What if you were the girl for the job?
  • What if you no longer let insecurity dictate your reality? 
  • I spent too long believing I didn’t belong on the tennis court or I didn’t belong as a writer. But guess what? I’m writing a freaking book. And then I’m going to write ANOTHER one.
  • My new mantra: “Why not me?” Thank you Mindy Kaling for that.
  • What if you spent more time thinking about how things could go well for you instead of always planning for and expecting the worst case scenario to unfold? How would your day-to-day life change?

 

Did you know we have a Patreon page? Patreon is a platform that lets listeners financially support their favorite podcasts for as little as $5/mo. (That’s cheaper than a cup of NYC coffee y’all!) Head over to Patreon.com/therefinedcollective to see how you can support the podcast (and get some pretty awesome goodies as a thank you)! Another way you can support the podcast is by sharing with friends! Just copy this link and then paste into the group chat with your besties: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-refined-collective-podcast/id1348034641#episodeGuid=30c48f6a66bb4bfca88b0f6522037407

 

Single ladies— do you feel stuck, lonely, discouraged or frustrated by your dating life, or lack thereof? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out!

Jan 15, 2020
Don't Take it Personal: Kat's End of Year Tell-All
56:25

 

Hi, friends! Welcome back to The Refined Collective podcast—it is our final episode of the year! It’s a solo show so you bet there will be random singing and Beyoncé references! This week, I’m not asking the questions… YOU are. You guys sent in your questions over on Instagram and in this episode, I’m answering as many as I could fit into a single episode. You guys know how weird I feel about recording solo shows so please let me know your feedback and if you’d want to hear more of these types of episodes.

 

  1. How do you deal with unhealthy overthinking and constantly taking things personally?
  • It’s important to let your community into your overthinking.
  • When you find yourself taking something personally, think: “They have something coming up for them that has nothing to do with me.”

 

  1. How do I give space and patience towards my boyfriend who is struggling letting go completely from his past relationship?
  • There’s an important conversation to be had here about recognizing emotional availability and standing in your worth.

 

  1. I’d love practical language on entering a conversation with a friend of mine who is a Christian and is dating a someone who is not.
  • It’s important to check in with your own heart on what you afraid of happening in this situation.

 

  1. How long have you been a Christian?
  • I went to a summer camp at 16 because all of the popular kids were going— but even from the very first night, this inexplicable thing ignited in my heart.
  • This is not to say that there haven’t been hard moments—because there have.

 

  1. Highs and lows for 2019/What is your vision for 2020 and TRW?!
  • My year started really painfully, but it gave me perspective to focus on spending the rest of the year enjoying time with the people I love.
  • Biggest high of the year is very exciting: I signed with a publisher for my book!

 

  1. Best and worst date of 2019?
  • Best: We went to a café, went hiking, and had a picnic. He kept surprising me!
  • Worst: I liked a guy + thought we were on the same page until he went MIA.

 

If you are enjoying the podcast, I want to invite you to leave a rating and review on iTunes! We love hearing what your favorite episodes are and always welcome any general feedback! It also helps us be more visible in the iTunes world. If you want to leave a review but don’t know how, head over to @therefinedcollective on Instagram and find the “Review 101” under story highlights.

Dec 11, 2019
From Wall Street to Career Coach: Shifting Roles and Shifting Mindsets
58:11

 

Jena Viviano is an ex-Wall Streeter turned career coach and entrepreneur who helps go-getter professionals articulate their personal branded career story to land their dream jobs. Stay tuned to hear us chat about Wall Street, faith journeys, shifting mindsets, eating disorders, and hear me drop Beyoncé’s name because of course! (Bonus: we have a quick chat about dating because Jena has an incredible boyfriend!)

 

Wall Street

·      We chat about what happens when we achieve the thing we think is going to fulfill us… and turns out it doesn’t fulfill us at all.

·      “God, I don’t know if you are real, but if you are: get me out of here.”

·      During her time on Wall Street, she developed an eating disorder.

·      “Instead of trying to fix the things that are “wrong with me,” why don’t I just lean into the things that I’m really good at.”

·      Jena shares how she was able to make a career pivot.

 

Integrating Faith at Work

·      “For a long time, I thought about my job being my provider, but really the reality is God is my provider. That mindset shift helped me take bigger risks from taking that side hustle to full hustle.”

1.     Stay silent vs. Bible beating—it doesn’t have to be one or the other. Hear how Jena balances sharing her faith at work.

2.     Are we using our gifts? Are we encouraging others to do the same?

3.     Pray and put action behind it. 

4.     Take a redemptive lens to work.

5.     How does generosity play into your work?

6.     Instead of compartmentalizing, show up as a whole person.

 

Battling an Eating Disorder

·      Jena sought counseling, health coaching, and rewired her thoughts.

·      The first step to healing was changing the environment she was in.

·      Bottom line: there is hope!

 

Keep up with Jena at her websitepodcastInstagram, and LinkedIn. You can get her free devotional at www.jenaviviano.com/wordatwork.

 

Single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

 
XO,
Kat
Dec 05, 2019
Creating Space for Grief
50:55

Today we are recording in Rockefeller Center a long way from my Brooklyn closet. I have my dear friend Carrie Gracey Lloyd on the podcast today! She has a podcast called “The Carrie On…” that you can check it out here. In this episode, we chat about grief, how to walk through it, how it can challenge your faith, and the importance of creating space for your grief. 

 

On Grief

“I love redemption stories, but if we don’t look at the grief, we don’t know where the lord is going to show up.” 

·      I have been walking through a lot of grief this year and Carrie’s podcast episodes on grief have helped me feel so seen and understood.

·      Carrie shares her experience with grief from losing family and friends from a young age.

·      We chat about the unhealthy ways we often cope with grief because it often feels our culture doesn’t allow us to grieve.

 

Creating Space for Grief

·      She outlines her process of following a “grieving plan,” where she actually takes time out of her day to process, reflect, and work through her pain and grief.

·      “I’ve sometimes felt God weep with me.”

·      Just as children allow themselves to cry and feel, we need to allow ourselves to grieve.

·      Carrie describes the relief and release she felt after grieving. 

 

Grief and Faith

·      People tend to question their faith when they are grieving.

·      “I think it’s alright to ask those questions as long as we don’t stay there for too long because that therefore meant that our belief in God was based on circumstances.”

 

The Other Side of Grief

·      We have to give ourselves permission to move forward.

·      “The heart holds onto grief until you actually process it.”

·      The process of healthy grieving will become quicker the more you go through it.

 

Keep up with Carrie: at her website, her podcast, her book, her other book, and on Instagram.

 

Single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources propelled me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! 

 
XO,
Kat
Nov 20, 2019
The Difference Between Diet Food and Real Food (And Why You Should Care)
01:04:13

Today, I have my sweet friend Sarah Adler on the podcast. She is a nutrition coach, healthy lifestyle expert, food blogger, and owner of Simply Real Health. I’ve been getting so many questions on Instagram about meal prep, cooking for one, and best things to have in your pantry. I know everyone is always stressing about how little time you have to cook or how expensive it is to prepare meals. I am totally not an expert on that stuff, so Sarah is here to share her knowledge! I learned so much from her and I can’t wait for you guys to hear her wisdom.

 

Life Lessons Meet Food

·       “If you are intentional about it, it doesn’t have to be something that is stressful. Sometimes you just need a system. A little bit of structure can go a long way.”

·      What is Real food? Real food is food from the earth that has existed since the beginning of time. (Not Cheetos.)

·      You want to target the simplest version of food. Food with one ingredient or ingredients that a five-year-old can recognize.

·      “If you’re feeding and nourishing yourself well, that sets the foundation for being able to have a very productive and intentional life.”

 

Personal Food Journey

·      Sarah always remembered loving going to the grocery store and being healthy.

·      “It became this thing I was so obsessed with. I would read fitness magazines for fun.”

·      Looking back, she recognizes that her obsession was what is now called “Orthorexia.”

·      She almost backed out of a trip to Italy because of fear of not having food options. She did go, and she remembers having an epiphany when she saw two women eating out.

·      “The food was just the thing that brought them together. They were so much more about connecting and being together.”

·      “Maybe there’s another way that’s not as obsessive. There’s another way to live that has more joy and celebration to it.”

·      From there, she learned to isolate the difference between diet food (marketed for fad diets and losing weight) and real food (natural and actually healthful).

 

Assessing Your Food

·      The number one question to ask in regard to food: Is it real or not real?

·      “If it’s real, your body can digest it.” Our bodies are not meant to digest food you can’t pronounce or recognize.

·      “Are you being kind to your body?”

·      The next important thing is your mindset: Focus on serving your body, not punishing it.

·      There is a direct connection between what you eat and how you feel.

 

Evaluating the “Sexy” Diet Trends 

·      Keto, paleo, anything that cuts out an entire category of food is a red flag.

·      However, some people need more meat, some people can’t do dairy, etc.

·      “Everybody does better with real food, but everybody has different intricacies within that.”

·      Start with real food, then upgrade it to simplify and honor your body and what it needs. Find what works for you!

·      Pay attention to your body—quick fixes do not work.

·      Find what food you thrive with. It’s not one size fits all—that’s the problem with diets.

·      Trendy diets bring about mental and emotional confusion.

 

On Gluten, Organic Food, and Seasonal Produce

·      It’s not that gluten is bad, it’s that it is overproduced and overconsumed. It comes down to quality and sourcing. The same goes for dairy.

·      Tune into your body—how do I feel after eating something?

·      If your body is okay with gluten, make sure you are getting the best quality of it.

·      Organic is expensive—but always invest in organic products that come from animals. 

·      “If you’re ingesting antibiotics, even secondhand, that affects our own hormones too.”

·      Focus on seasonal produce—it’s usually the cheapest stuff on sale. Here are some graphics that will help you learn what is seasonal on Pinterest.

·      Learn basic techniques, like making a soup, and then everything else is interchangeable.

 

Cooking for One 

1. Get a functional set of pantry staples (quinoa, cans of tomatoes, beans, bag of frozen veggies, grass-fed butter, organic chicken sausage, brown rice pasta)

2. Buy versatile ingredients that can be used at least five different ways (kale, bell peppers, potatoes, sweet potatoes) and pair them with a pantry staple. They keep a long time and can be put in smoothies, soups, salads, etc.

3. Make recipes that can be built upon when you have it for leftovers the next day.

4. “You can do a lot with not very much hassle, stress, chopping, or ingredients.”

5. For busy people (who like one pot meals): insta-pots are a game changer! It does require planning ahead, though.

 

Head over to Simplyrealhealth.com to see her resources and courses! Sarah has a new book coming out on November 19th called Simply Real Eating. It’s her second cookbook (the first was Simply Real Health). 

 

“Your body deserves a little bit of love and attention.”

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! With you on the journey.

 
Nov 13, 2019
Discernment: What it is and Practical Tools to Use it
01:06:10

 

Mike Maeshiro calls himself a “Serial entrepreneur.” He runs several businesses. He travels and speaks on the gift of discernment and spiritual intelligence. He believes discernment is something people don’t talk about enough, so we chat about it in this episode. We also talk about entrepreneurship, and discerning when is the right time to make your side hustle your main hustle.


What is Discernment?

  • He grew up in the church, was a “nice, agreeable Christian boy.” However, he was lying all the time—pretending he wasn’t aware of these spiritual atmospheres around him.
  • “I started opposing the disfunction in my relationships.”

The Purpose of Discernment

  • Discernment exposes darkness in someone’s individual life or corporately.
  • It also provides accountability and sets a standard in community.
  • Discernment shows us the heart behind actions are more important than the actions themselves.
  • “My response is not going to be based on the action, it’s going to be based on where it is coming from in the spirit.” 

How to Step Into Discernment


Entrepreneurship

  • He has always been a great employee and student but he feels unrest in those situations. He needs to be innovating.
  • When you say yes to wealth, you start having the eyes to see it.
  • He recalls the moment he realized his side hustles brought in enough money for him to quit his full time job.

Side Hustle to Main Hustle

  • Financial intelligence is important in this sort of risk-taking.
  • “You are the most powerful asset you will ever have access to.”
  • “You will be in every season of your life. Invest in who you are.”
  • The number one thing to ask yourself to discern if you’re ready to go full-time into your side hustle: Can I bet on me?

How Can We Make This Not Woo-Woo?

  • We constantly need to reimagine what success means to us.
  • Poverty was a high value in the early church. “God is not broke.”
  • “What you say yes to in your life is what you’re going to produce. It’s a byproduct of an ecosystem you have said yes to in your own being.”
  • We have to get rid of these false beliefs about God and us when it comes to lack and poverty and control.
  • “There’s more than enough! That’s the nature of the kingdom we are of.”

Further Reading for Entrepreneurs


Head over to MikeMaeshiro.com to see his resources, coaching services, and all the things. He is also on Instagram at @mikemaeshiro and YouTube at Mike Maeshiro. He also has a podcast called Confessions of a Reformer about all the things.


XO,
Kat
 
Nov 06, 2019
Side Hustles, Career Pivots, And Learning to Listen To Your Audience
42:33

 

Do you ever think ‘When do I make the transition from my full-time job to my side hustle?’ ‘How do I choose a side hustle?’ or ‘How do I spend my time and money in a new business?’ and ‘How do I even make money in a new business?’ You are not alone. This week Stacy Tuschl, an expert in growing small businesses, is here to answer your questions! Y’all, she started her own company in her parents’ backyard when she was 18 and now it is a multi-million-dollar business. I always look to her for business advice and I can’t wait for you to hear her wisdom. 

 

How She Got Her Start: SUCCESS IS NEVER OVERNIGHT.

·      Stacy grew up in an entrepreneurial family. 

·      “I feel like everybody else could probably see it, but I didn’t.”

·      She went to school fully planning on working for someone else after college, but she wound up teaching dancing and it grew from 17 students to 100 in a year. 

·      Now she has two performing arts academies that gross over $1 million.

·      “It’s been 17 years of building that business, so please know that I did not start there.”

·      It took Stacy 5 years to bring in a single paycheck. There is NO such thing as overnight success.

 

Making Money With Your Side Hustle

·      If you love what you’re doing in your business, the business will last.

·      “What would I do even if I never got paid for it?”

·      You can either spend time or spend money to make your business grow. Ex: spending time: doing the work yourself vs. spending money: outsourcing the work.

 

When to Take The Leap

·      Get Practical: It’s just like quitting any job—are you ready for it financially?

·      Take some time to ask yourself: how much time you have to give, how much money you have to invest, who do you have depending on you? 

·      Stacy’s advice is to just take action, because then you can start getting feedback which will help you mold the perfect business.

 

Listening To Your Audience

·      You need to constantly be getting feedback from your audience because people are constantly changing and that means their needs are changing too.

·      At the end of every lesson, Stacy has a google form asking questions like ‘What did you get out of this?’ ‘Where did you struggle?’ and ‘What do you wish I would have taught?’

·      Don’t just ask the questions, LEARN from them! Give your clients what they are asking for.

 

 Career Pivots

·      You have to be your own individual in your business. Be who others aren’t so you can serve who others aren’t.

·      We all have blind spots in our businesses, and it takes courage to stop and reflect.

·       “Just because you don’t know what your next thing is doesn’t mean you’re not meant for it.”

·      Give yourself space to think and have an open mind for whatever is coming next for you.

 

Keep up with Stacy on Instagram at @stacytuscl or visit her website at StacyTuschl.com. She now has a podcast called Foot Traffic Podcast and a signature program called Foot Traffic Formula, which you can access through her website.

 

If you are enjoying the podcast, I want to invite you to leave a rating and review on iTunes! We love hearing what your favorite episodes are and always welcome any general feedback! It also helps us be more visible in the iTunes world. If you want to leave a review but don’t know how, head over to @therefinedcollective on Instagram and find the “Review 101” under story highlights.

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out! With you on the journey.

 


XO,
Kat
Oct 23, 2019
You Were Born To Shine With Ashley LeMieux
47:29

 

I am so grateful to have Ashley LeMieux on the podcast this week. She is the founder and CEO of The Shine Project and she is currently launching her first book called “Born To Shine.” This week we are chatting about walking through grief, finding healing, holding onto hope, and how to shine in your darkest moments.

 

Her Why

  • When Ashley was little, she was very shy so she would write out all of her feelings.
  • “If you asked me while I was young, I would always tell you that I wanted to be a writer who helped people heal their hearts.”
  • She let doubts and concerns of others let her stray from this path of writing while she was in college, but she decided to start a blog called The Shine Project.
  • That same blog has now grown into a product line and online community for women.
  • She acknowledges that fear can prevent us from pursuing our dreams and even just finding out what our dreams are in the first place.
  • “In our heart of hearts, if we just sit still enough, I think we all kind of already know what that thing is… we just bury it with layers to distract us so we don’t have to do it.”
  • We too often let our minds jump to all the things that can go wrong.

 

Holding Onto Hope

  • One day, she and her husband were called and asked to parent a four and six-year old.
  • “At that moment, it felt like everything in our lives had led us to that point and to be able to say yes.”
  • Several years into their being a family of four, they were still finalizing the adoption process and there was an unexpected contested adoption.
  • While she was away, they found out that their children would be taken from them the next morning. She wasn’t able to see them and so she wrote letters from her hotel.
  • “Every day felt like I was carrying the weight of the world.”
  • In those moments, she saw that this painful experience was a trial of their faith. She knew that they would come out the other side.
  • “I didn’t know the depths of that pain existed.”

 

Finding Healing

  • “My healing process will be for the rest of my life.”
  • She spent time with various therapists to help with the healing process and she felt the fog of grief begin to lift the tiniest bit after one year.
  • Her big turning moment was a moment in which she looked in the mirror for the first time in a while and she was lifeless. “It was like everything had been vacuumed out of me.”
  • In that moment, she realized she didn’t want to feel the same way looking in the mirror when she gets to be 80 years old.
  • “How can I live a fulfilled happy joyful life while still feeling pain? Because they have to co-exist. They have to.”
  • From there, she discovered the difference between suffering and pain. She could drop her suffering and hold on to joy.

 

How To Shine In Your Darkest Moments

  • We don’t have to be afraid of the dark. “The light within us is brighter than any of the darkness that surround us.”
  • How can what’s burying me start serving me? When she was buried in pain, loss, and heartbreak, she decided to rise above it.
  • Give yourself permission. To dream, to find joy, to be excellent, to shine! “We don’t give ourselves permission to shine and we dim our own light. There’s already so much out there that’s trying to work against us and the last thing we need is to work against ourselves.”
  • Show up to the biggest fights of your life with love. It’s easy to get in fight mode or be in the “me against the world” mentality. Anger depletes us, but love can’t be taken away. “Once we start giving it, there’s just so much more to receive of it.”
  • Ignite the light in others. Focusing outside of yourself and serving others brings purpose to our pain. Our pain allows us to understand people differently.

 

If You Are Walking Through Grief Right Now

  • “Your story is not yet over. No matter how dark it gets around you. No matter how dim and bleak and painful everything feels, you were born to shine.”
  • “Sometimes, the best view we have of the stars is when we’re knocked flat out on our backs in the darkest night.”

 

You can find Ashley at @ashleyklemieux and go to theshineproject.com/tour to order her book! There, you can also see her book tour and see what city she’ll be in near you.

 

If you are enjoying the podcast, I want to invite you to leave a rating and review on iTunes! We love hearing what your favorite episodes are and always welcome any general feedback! It also helps us be more visible in the iTunes world. If you want to leave a review but don’t know how, head over to @therefinedcollective on Instagram and find the “Review 101” under story highlights.

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! With you on the journey.

 

Fab Fit Fun is a seasonal subscription box that has FULL-SIZED beauty, fitness, fashion, and lifestyle products and I am so obsessed, y’all. The contents always have a worth of about $200 the boxes only cost $49.99! A few of my favorites from this box: a travel yoga mat, Vitamin C serum, and a gold eye mask. Even better? You get to customize what goes into your box! If you’ve ever thought about trying it—now is the time! If you go to www.fabfitfun.com and use code TRW, you’ll get $10 off your first box!

 

Oct 16, 2019
Purity Culture, Painful Sex + Debunking Shame Narrative with Dr. Celeste Holbrook
59:07

 

Are you a single woman of faith trying to figure out how to navigate dating in today’s hookup culture and online dating? I get it… it can be confusing and frustrating. This week I brought a Christian sexologist on the podcast to help navigate these murky waters. Dr. Celeste Holbrook’s goal in life is to create safe spaces for women to talk about sex. My hope is that this will encourage you to get curious about your own sexuality.

 

Growing Up In Purity Culture

  • Celeste grew up going to purity conferences and wearing a purity ring. 
  • Her home was not shame-filled, but everyone around her was very conservative when it came to conversations about sex.

 

The Moment They Were Waiting For

  • When they first had sex, it was extremely painful and not enjoyable for her. 
  • “I thought I was going to be rewarded with great sex.”
  • This disconnect between Celeste and her husband began to erode their relationship.
  • “I felt a lot of shame for not living up to what I thought I should be sexually.”
  • She realized she never had good sex education. She decided to embark on a journey to unlearn shame, and to learn her body in a fresh way.

 

Deconstructing Sex And Shame

  • “I went through that process so that I could enter into a sexual space and feel worthy of pleasure and sex that felt good.”
  • After experiencing breakthrough and pain-free sex, she made it her mission to help others in similar circumstances and pivoted from studying behavior to sexual behavior.
  • “Although it’s a natural biological thing, it doesn’t come naturally. You have to learn how to do it just like riding a bike.”
  • Madonna Whore Complex: “You’re shamed if you have too much sex and you’re shamed if you have no sex. There’s this pendulum that we can’t seem to step out of.”

 

What Is Sexuality?

  • Sexuality is way more than just sex, desire, or physical intimacy. “Sexuality is far more than that bottom layer of what it looks like biologically.”

 

What Is Sex?

  • A lot of single Christian women are wondering about physical boundaries in sex.
  • 75% of women don’t climax from vaginal sex—they climax from clitoral stimulation.
  • Freud told women that to have an orgasm through clitoral stimulation is to be infantile. 
  • In 1998, neurologist Helen Connoll put the clitoris into the journal of sexual medicine. 
  • “Limiting the term ‘sex’ to ‘penis’ and ‘vagina’ is marginalizing and produces shame.”
  • Pleasure gets confused with hedonism, but pleasure is acknowledged in Matthew 6:26.
  • “We can’t have the conversation about pleasure and spirituality without having a conversation about sensuality.”

 

What is Sensuality?

  • “When we think about us as sensual beings, we are literally experiencing the creation and the creator through all five of our senses.”
  • Sensuality can be as simple as being in the moment. We can’t experience our senses in the past or future… only the present.
  • What does celibacy mean to you when sensuality and sexuality are closely related? You can embrace sensuality in these smaller ways before we have sex.

 

Books To Read:

 

If any parts of this conversation have felt triggering for you, just know that whatever you’re feeling is valid. There is no judgement. Validate your feelings and then question why those feelings are coming up for you. “Our God is one that encourages curious questions and sincere questioning.” Celeste has so many resources for you, including 20 sex-enhancing questions for freeon her website. She also offers free30-minute discovery calls. If you have questions about anything we talked about today, go to her website and click on “30 Minute Discovery Call.” She also has coursesfor one on one consulting if that feels right for you.

 

 If you are enjoying the podcast, I want to invite you to leave a rating and review on iTunes! We love hearing what your favorite episodes are and always welcome any general feedback! It also helps us be more visible in the iTunes world. If you want to leave a review but don’t know how, head over to @therefinedcollective on Instagram and find the “Review 101” under story highlights.

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out! With you on the journey.

 

XO,

Kat

 

Oct 09, 2019
How To Live Authentically Without Prematurely Sharing Your Story
50:09

 

Hello, friends! Thanks so much for being here! Today, I’m talking to my dear friend Ashley Abercrombie who is a literal superwoman. She is a mother, wife, writer, speaker, and author of Rise of the Truth Teller. Ashley is so full of grace and our friendship has challenged me so much. In this episode, we chat about how you can live authentically without prematurely sharing your story, finding healing, and how you can handle confrontation and conflict.

 

Ashley’s Story

  • Growing up, people always came to her for advice, but she never felt comfortable taking off that mask to say that she needed help and advice too.
  • When she got to college, she began abusing drugs and alcohol, and later struggled with bulimia and was also sexually assaulted, which resulted in pregnancy and abortion.
  • “I’ll stick this somewhere where nobody will ever find it. I’ll put this somewhere where I’ll never have to deal with it and I’ll just keep it moving.”
  • She remembers crying out for God when she felt most out of control and shares what it felt like when she felt His presence and love.
  • “We’re created for wholeness; we’re not created for perfection. We can find wholeness in the midst of our brokenness.”

 

Sharing Your Story Publicly

  • It’s important to share your story, but it’s also important to protect your own healing first and foremost.
  • “In the context of safe and healthy relationships is where we need to be processing things.”
  • When we don’t have safe relationships to process with, we should be turning to therapists. Instead, the trend is to either keep it all in or share with the whole world.
  • “Sharing your story can be a way of masking.”
  • It’s vulnerable, but we need to learn to ask advice from our close community.

 

Questions To Ask Yourself Weekly

  • Do you like the person you are becoming?
  • Is your heart for God shrinking or growing?
  • Have you compromised on your financial integrity?
  • Have you compromised on your sexual integrity?
  • Are you giving your family your emotional scraps?

 

Accepting The Love You Think You Deserve

  • Ashley remembers a pastor saying, “Everyone does love their neighbor as they love themselves and that’s the problem.”
  • She shares that we need to set our sights on God because then it becomes easier for us to see ourselves and others in the light of who He is.
  • We can manage our expectations and still hold on to hope.
  • “There is no way for hope to survive when we’re lonely and isolated.” We need people to carry us through.

 

Speaking Your Truth and Fighting Well

  • Ashley shares how we can have these truthful conversations as well as navigate conflict.
  • She first asks for grace and frames her concern as a question to the other person.
  • We’ve been trained to think that conflict shouldn’t happen or that there’s a way to resolve it without actually dealing with the issue.
  • “We have this mental struggle to understand that conflict is very normal. It should be a daily part of our life.”
  • Most importantly: you can resolve it. Healthy relationships can be maintained even when those involved are in a conflict that takes longer to resolve.
  • A good way to approach these conversations is to start with “I” because it helps prevent us from coming from a place of blame.

 

Healing Your Past

  • “I had to recognize that this was going to be a process.”
  • She remembers sharing her story with a friend and feeling how just her presence there was helpful. She never tried to give her quick fixes—she was simply a presence.
  • “What does it look like for me to be honest in this space?”
  • She found places to serve, mentor, and journey with people.
  • She has found the courage to be honest on her journey. “When I’m tempted, I say so.”

 

Isn’t Ashley amazing? You can buy her book anywhere books are sold! Follow her on Instagram at @ashabercrombie and visit her website ashabercrombie.org.

 

If you are enjoying the podcast, I want to invite you to leave a rating and review on iTunes! We love hearing what your favorite episodes are and always welcome any general feedback! It also helps us be more visible in the iTunes world. If you want to leave a review but don’t know how, head over to @therefinedcollective on Instagram and find the “Review 101” under story highlights.

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out! With you on the journey.

 

XO,

Kat

Oct 02, 2019
How to Plan for Marriage Not Just a Wedding
52:45

 

This week on the podcast, I’m chatting with Natasha Miller. She is a daughter of God, wife to Jamal Miller, and mother of Harvest Ann and Melodie Grace. She is also the co-founder of Miller Media Group, a company dedicated to raising up brands and publications that reflect God’s voice. She also founded Fearless Women Mentorship, where she helps women to recognize their inner beauty and warrior. This episode, we’re chatting about singleness, relationships, unexpected challenges of marriage, and how to plan for marriage and not the wedding day. You’ve heard her husband, Jamal, describe the way they met and fell in love on his episode of The Dudes Series, but now you get to hear her side of the same story!

 

How They Met

  • They met on Facebook y’all!
  • After a few YEARS, Jamal got bold and told her that he was interested in her.
  • “He wasn’t a man who was living on an island by himself. He was a man who was committed and a man who was open to hearing other voices in his life. It brought me a lot of comfort knowing that I wasn’t a secret.”
  • Natasha was in SoCal and Jamal was in Chicago, so they started by having phone dates.
  • “From the moment I heard his voice, I knew he was a man who knew what he wanted.”
  • They spoke every day and met for the first time in Chicago at a conference. Jamal was her first relationship and kiss—now they are celebrating 6 years of marriage. 
  • “This decision was not just for my present, but it was for my future. Right now, this is a gift that the Lord is giving me.”

 

The Unexpected Challenges of Marriage

  • Once life really started to happen and they moved into an apartment and she didn’t have a job, she felt afraid. All these fears started coming up for her.
  • “I had this romantic idea of what a marriage should look like.”
  • One month in, she started feeling sadness and depression. She was constantly comparing herself to Jamal, who was thriving.
  • She was in the mentality that she needed to be who her husband needed her to be and who everyone around her needed her to be.
  • In conflict, they were repeating what their parents did. This continued 3.5 years into marriage after they had their kids. They hit a breaking point where their communication was not working.
  • “I didn’t know how to communicate what I was feeling because I was afraid of being rejected.”

 

Finding The Breakthrough

  • Their breakthrough wasn’t overnight; healing in their marriage took time and years of leaning in.
  • Now, Natasha and Jamal are working on their business Married and Young, which they started one year into their marriage. “We want to make marriage popular. We want people to desire it again.”

 

How to Invest Into Your Marriage

  • Invest in your personal development and heal from your past. You need to forgive yourself and address past pain and hurt. Don’t be afraid to dig deep.
  • “Before you can extend grace to others you have to learn how to extend it to yourself.”
  • Realize that when you are putting in the work that it is not just for you, it is for God. You need to have a bigger why. 
  • “You can forgive and still love. You can be hurt and still grow.”
  • Truly take the time to know who you are. Discover your purpose.
  • “There’s a difference between communicating and being vulnerable.”
  • For the single ladies: you can practice this vulnerability with your family and friends because if you can’t practice it there, you won’t be able to practice it in marriage. Being able to practice it in your marriage will help sustain it during the difficult times.
  • “When you allow God to change you from the inside out, that’s when you’re able to truly love someone who is unlovable.”

 

How incredible is Natasha?! I know y’all want to connect with her so follow her at @natashaannmiller and on Facebook at Natasha Ann Miller. If you’re interested in seeing Married and Young’s resources or joining their email list, head over to MarriedAndYoung.com.

If you are enjoying the podcast, I want to invite you to leave a rating and review on iTunes! We love hearing what your favorite episodes are and always welcome any general feedback! It also helps us be more visible in the iTunes world. If you want to leave a review but don’t know how, head over to @therefinedcollective on Instagram and find the “Review 101” under story highlights.

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out! With you on the journey.

 

XO,

Kat

Sep 25, 2019
Staying Connected To Hope With Mia Fieldes
01:00:18

 

This week on the podcast, I’m chatting with Mia Fieldes, who I first discovered through another podcast. Whenever I become obsessed with someone’s story, I love to look them up, but Mia is a very private person. We start off talking about the pressure today to share everything while we’re in it. As my mentor says, we have to teach from our scars not our scabs. “You have to be okay with some things being hidden.” Mia is a Grammy-nominated songwriter who is from Australia and is living in Nashville with her husband. She has written songs for Hillsong, including No. 1 radio hits ‘He Knows My Name,’ ‘Chainbreaker,’ and ‘First.’ On this episode, we talk about pursuing God’s calling as well as staying connected to hope and keeping perspective in seasons of singleness.

 

Pursuing God’s Calling

  • “When I was really little, I really did think I was going to do something amazing.”
  • She grew up as a triplet and remembers when her sisters would go to bed she would write letters to God saying, “One day I’m going to do something amazing for you. One day I’m going to write songs all over the world.”
  • “Faith is incredibly hard and it’s incredibly easy.”
  • Her mother was 22, single, and pregnant with triplets. She struggled with drug abuse, they lived in the projects, and they received food stamps from the Salvation Army.
  • The Salvation Army noticed her mother had three little kids and so they brought them to Sunday school. There, Mia sang songs about Jesus and developed the foundation of her faith.
  • “My mom was on the same journey as I was.”

 

Staying Connected to Hope in Singleness

  • “How do you believe God for something that is fully dependent on somebody else’s free will?”
  • She spent a lot of time being single and didn’t even kiss a boy until she was 22.
  • When she was beginning her first relationship, she realized that she was putting so much pressure on it because she had waited so long to enter her first relationship.
  • “I felt a grace to be single.”
  • You have to follow peace so that when you are in the storm your peace is your anchor.
  • “Everyone told me marriage would be hard… and I thought ‘yeah but being single is hard.’”
  • It’s all your perspective, but there is beauty in every season.
  • “When you get to a certain age, people put limitations on you that God never does.”
  • She notices that everyone seems to be fighting for a piece of the pie, but everyone gets their own whole pie. She got her own promise from God.

 

Keeping Perspective

  • We need to be optimistic. If we spend our energy complaining, we will get no closer to where we want to be. We will receive that negative energy back.
  • “You create your world with your words.”
  • Mia recalls the journey she went on with God guiding her toward a positive mindset and eventually her husband. “God plucked my husband seemingly out of nowhere.”
  • “If you have to convince someone into something, then believe me someone will convince them out of it.”
  • It’s easy to worry about the things you’ll have to compromise on, but when the right person comes along, you’ll realize there is no real compromise to be made.
  • “It’s so important to go to God for yourself and get your own promise. Otherwise you will filter what God is doing with you through everyone else’s story.”
  • “I don’t want the plagiarized version of somebody else’s story.”
  • Mia says that her husband, Joren, has been healing for her.
  • “God is writing a way bigger story than you can think about.”

 

Top Three Things To Look For In Your Person

  • Look for someone who is committed to change.
  • A partner must also be able to handle conflict well.
  • Communication!

 

Mia doesn’t have a website, but she does have an Instagram! You can give her a follow at @miafieldes. If you want to hear more details of her story, listen to this episode of the C3 NYC podcast.

 

If you are enjoying the podcast, I want to invite you to leave a rating and review on iTunes! We love hearing what your favorite episodes are and always welcome any general feedback! It also helps us be more visible in the iTunes world. If you want to leave a review but don’t know how, head over to @therefinedcollective on Instagram and find the “Review 101” under story highlights.

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out! With you on the journey.

 

XO,

Kat

Sep 18, 2019
Babies, Botox + Body Image
46:30

It’s been a minute since I’ve done a solo show! I’m going to be honest with you guys: one of my fears is that you will only listen to the podcast if I have guests on or that the podcast will only grow if I have guests sharing the episode with their communities. But I’m moving through this insecurity and bringing the fear to light to give it less power. That being said, I am committed to stepping into this vulnerable space and doing more solo shows for you! Randomly during one of my workout classes the phrase “babies, botox, and body image” popped into my head. So that’s what we are going to discuss today! Before we dive in, I want you to know that you have permission to be in the process and on the journey. None of us are perfect!

 

Babies

  • I’ve always wanted to be a mother, but life has not turned out like I thought it would.
  • This year is the first time I started to feel that biological clock start ticking. 
  • I don’t want fear driving me into a relationship because of pressure to get things going.
  • Even in the midst of disappointment and unmet expectations, I am allowed to hope. 
  • It’s okay to want to have babies and it’s okay to not want to have babies.
  • 1 Samuel 1: Hannah asks God for a son and she ends her life with five children.
  • Mark Batterson, author of The Circle Maker, says to be bold and specific in prayer and then surrender.
  • It’s okay to be honest with God about your desire.  It’s ok to be disappointed with God. He can handle it. He is gracious, kind, and patient. He wants to be in relationship with us. 

 

Botox

“You’re allowed to be a person in process.”  

  • People ask me what I do for my skin and the reality is that I take really good care of it (Rodan and Fields anti aging system, Primally Pure toxic free clarifying serum, hyolauronic acid)… and I also get botox.
  • Botox always felt so vain and fake in my opinion, so I judged myself for wanting it.
  • Even though I really love it, I have still felt shame about it and felt silently judged when it comes up in conversations.
  • We need to disconnect from the “should,” because then we can really unfold why we want this thing and discover if it is in alignment with who we are.
  • I judged myself because I wanted to look and feel younger. I felt like I’d be letting you down if you knew that I still have insecurities—but I am in process just as you are. 
  • “Do we have space for each other to be on a journey?  Gosh, I sure hope so.”

 

Body Image

  • I love the body positivity movement and the fact that women like Ashley Graham are literally changing the game in the fashion industry and in our culture.
  • I do think we live in a culture of extremism, though. I’m a size 6, but models that are getting jobs are size 00 or size 12+. It still breeds the mentality of ‘not enough.’
  • Is there space for a person like me to be represented in our culture? I have lost ‘influencer’ jobs for not being skinny enough + now for not being big enough.
  • “It’s almost felt as though I don’t have the permission to struggle with my body image because I’m in the middle of the road.”
  • I overcame an eating disorder and praise God for that! (If you didn’t know that, I have an episode all about it.) I am healthy but I also have days where I don’t feel confident.
  • I was listening to This American Life recently called “Ten Sessions” where a woman goes into therapy sessions while moving through abuse from childhood. She had to give herself permission to grieve and seek healing from a sexual abuse where she wasn’t raped. She didn’t think her pain was valid because it wasn’t as bad as someone else’s.
  • “Wholeness is acknowledging that my stuff is worth gaining freedom from no matter how big or little I think it is.”
  • I hope that our culture can keep embracing body positivity and that we create a culture of honor for all shapes and sizes.

 

My hope is that my story reminds you that

you’re not alone,

you’re allowed to hope,

you’re allowed to be imperfect,

you’re allowed to be on a journey.

You, just as you are today right now, are enough.

 

Let’s talk about these things! Head over to @therefinedcollective and let’s have a conversation. I want to thank you for all of your encouraging comments, DMs, and reviews. I want to hear what episode has meant the most to you! Let us know in a review on iTunes and while you’re there, make sure you subscribe so you can get new episodes delivered to your phone as soon as they go live!

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out! With you on the journey.

Sep 11, 2019
CBD 101: Everything You Need To Know About CBD
45:36

Has anyone else noticed that CBD is totally having a moment? You’re probably wondering ‘What is CBD?’ ‘Can I Get High From CBD?’ and ‘Is CBD legal?’ I put out a poll on IG stories and asked you if you’d want me to have an expert on to learn more about it and it just so happens that my bestie Boronia Fallshaw is the founder of Mello. We’re recording from my bed, just like the episodes with my other besties Sara and Amanda.   

“I think it’s important, when you’re talking about something like CBD, to completely understand it scientifically so you know how it’s going to affect your body.”

What Is CBD vs THC? Why Is CBD Legal?

  • A cannabinoid is a chemical compound that exists in cannabis—there are about 85. They work with your endocannabinoid system which regulates homeostasis. 
  • Our bodies already create endocannabinoids, but when we get sick things get deficient and the system doesn’t function properly.
  • You can bring your body back to homeostasis through the use of cannabinoids. 
  • CBD is a cannabinoid that works with the cannabinoid receptors outside of your brain, that’s why it doesn’t give you the high.
  • THC works with the receptors inside your brain, thus causing highs.
  • CBD only recently became legalized. For a long time, it was in a grey area.
  • As of December 2018, the Farm Bill was approved, which legalized products containing hemp-derived cannabinoids, including CBD and THC. However, the concentration of THC within each product can never be above 0.3%. 
  • Something to be aware of: CBD sometimes comes up on drug tests. 

How To Identify A Good Product

  • “Read the packaging labels and read the ingredient labels.”
  • Check the amount of CBD. A reputable brand will list the gross amount (total in the package) as well as the recommended serving.
  • Cannabinoids only come from: stalks, leaves, flowers, buds, and stems. Seed oils do not contain cannabinoids, but can function well in beauty products.
  • See if it is full spectrum, broad spectrum, or an isolate. Make sure it is hemp-derived!
  • Full spectrum includes the limited amount of THC, the anti-oxidants, the omega 3’s.
  • Broad spectrum is the same, minus the THC. Isolate is when ONLY the CBD is extracted.

What You Need To Know About Edibles

  • A lot of cafes will have drinks that include CBD, but you should be careful of that. 
  • “When you’re ingesting any edible, you’re only getting 20% of it.”
  • So if they are using an oil that is designed to be held under the tongue in your coffee you are wasting its value. If you want to add CBD to your coffee make sure you are using a product that is designed to be digested. 
  • The brand you are buying from should be clear about the product being a tincture (ie: designed to be held under the tongue) vs a water soluble product that is designed to be drunk or eaten. 
  • It’s important to make sure that anything you are using as an edible is being marketed as an edible. If it’s not meant to be an edible, you’re wasting your money.

How To Use CBD

  • Making sure you’re dosing correctly is trial and error. Boronia journals every day to track her responses.
  • “That got me to a point where I know that 33 mg every day is perfect for me.”
  • If you’re new to CBD products, use the recommended dosage for the product and go from there.
  •  “Get into a regime because then you’re operating from a place of fullness rather than deficiency.”
  • If you’re not feeling any change after three days, get in contact with the company you bought it from and ask questions. Figure out the best way to use it for you.

Perks of CBD

  • Boronia swears by CBD because it helps her but gives her no side effects.
  • “It’s like coming out of a really epic meditation but it’s with you throughout the whole day.”
  • Any time people say it doesn’t work for them it is often because they are expecting to feel something in their head, but that is not where CBD is at work.
  • “It doesn’t fix you, it helps your body fix itself.”
  • “How can I bring balance back into my life?”

Some Of Your Questions:

Should I get off of my anxiety medications and switch to CBD? 

  • Absolutely not—get in touch with your doctor and discuss with them that you want to try cannabinoids. Plenty of people do both.

Should you take CBD when you’re pregnant?

  • No. We don’t know the science of what it does to a fetus. If you really want to, consult your doctor.

What are the top reasons to take CBD?

  • Effective pain reliever, anti-inflammatory, anxiety reducing, helps sleep, appetite control, moderates the number of seizures people have. 

What are your favorite products?

  • Boronia’s company sells bath bombs and she also loves vaping. It hits your bloodstream really quickly so you can take as needed. And, Mello just launched their own product, delicious Sea Salted Caramels with 15mg of CBD in each bite. 


Boronia advises that you should just give CBD a go! Test it for a while, journal about what it does for you, and make it work for you. However, if you experience any adverse effects, absolutely stop taking it. You can keep up with Boronia on Instagram at @boroniamarie and visit her website at MelloDaily.com, Instagram at @mellodailycbd, or email her at hello@mellodaily.com.

If you want to learn more, head over to https://mellodaily.com/cbd-facts/.

If you like the podcast, I want to invite you to subscribe to the podcast and leave a rating and review. It helps us to get the episode out to more people and means the world to us! We’d love to hear your reactions to this specific episode and what topics you want to hear more of!

Fab Fit Fun is a seasonal subscription box that has FULL-SIZED beauty, fitness, fashion, and lifestyle products and I am so obsessed, y’all. The contents always have a worth of about $200 the boxes only cost $49.99! A few of my favorites from this box: a travel yoga mat, Vitamin C serum, and a gold eye mask. Even better? You get to customize what goes into your box! If you’ve ever thought about trying it—now is the time! If you go to www.fabfitfun.com and use code TRW, you’ll get $10 off your first box!

XO,

Kat Harris

Sep 04, 2019
Divorce, Online Dating, Sugar Daddies, and More
39:06

Bianca Olthoff is a pastor, Bible teacher, speaker, author, and a million other things. She and her husband began planning churches this past year and their love story is incredible. She also just released a book where she shows us how to confront the hard truths of life. Our interview was cut short because of technical problems, but we had such an incredible chat about divorce, sugar daddies, the expectations we put on ourselves, and the mentalities that hold us back.

The Heart Behind Her Book

  • Bianca’s third book, How To Have Your Life Not Suck, is a sort of manual for her 25-year-old self that was facing life’s challenges.
  • “If you are not dead, God ain’t done, sister.”
  • She looks back on these lessons and sees how they apply to her life even today.
  • “It’s your story, it’s your pain, it’s your loss, it’s your tragedy, it’s your trauma, it’s your success, it’s your wins, and no one can take that from you.”
  • We love the up and down journeys of characters in films, but when we experience the downs in life, we want none of it. But we need it to become who we are.
  • “We want the progress without the process and it doesn’t work like that.”

Confronting Expectations

  • When Bianca turned 25, she looked back at the goals she set for herself several years earlier and found she was not where she wanted to be.
  • “I’m willing to step into the hard, I’m willing to be responsible.”
  • The difference between girls and women is not a matter of age, it is a matter of choice. Choosing to step into the hard work makes you an adult.
  • “There is beauty in the work.”

On Wanting Sugar Daddies

  • “We can wait around hoping, wishing, praying that Prince Charming will come and rescue us but the truth is that if we are believers in Christ we’ve already been rescued.”
  • Bianca challenges us to prove to ourselves that we can take care of ourselves.
  • She warns us to not take it too far, though. “In our independence we can push people away.”
  • If we are open for relationships, are we making that known? Like lights on taxis, we need to indicate if we are open or shut down to the possibility.
  • “We want to complain about things that we actually have control over.”

Bianca’s Love Story

  • Bianca was in her late 20’s and waiting for God to bring a man to her doorstep.
  • She ultimately started an online dating profile on eHarmony, where she ended up meeting her current husband, who had previously been married and had two children.
  • She was confronted by the opinions of society, her family, her friends, and her church.
  • “We have an opportunity to play a part in someone’s redemption story. That is a gift. That is an honor. But let me say this: that is not easy.”
  • “When you choose that person, you’re choosing their entire life.”
  • Ruth was a widow, was barren, could no longer have kids, and went to work and caught the eye of an amazing man who loved her.
  • “The moment you walk in in this servitude of ‘I can’t believe you’ve seen me, woe is me,’ is the moment you forget who you are. Child of God, you are fearfully and wonderfully made.”
  • If you are in that mindset, it will take work and therapy to achieve a healthy mindset.
  • “There are beautiful things that grow out of really dry and barren places so don’t give up.”

Now I’m not divorced, but did this talk with Bianca make me cry? YUP. I am so grateful for Bianca, her friendship, her book, and her story. Her book just came out yesterday and you can buy it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or any brick and mortar shop. You can get more info at BiancaOlthoff.com or on social media at @biancaolthoff

If you like the podcast, I want to invite you to subscribe to the podcast and leave a rating and review. It helps us to get the episode out to more people and means the world to us! We’d love to hear your reactions to this specific episode and what topics you want to hear more of!

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to getting out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdatingtips to check it out! With you on the journey.

XO,

Kat Harris

Aug 28, 2019
Everything You Were Never Taught About Your Period
01:10:59

I am so excited to be chatting with my soul sister Kate Eskuri today! This episode we’re talking all about PERIODS. Ladies, you’re going to learn so much more than you ever did in health class. Kate is a registered nurse, holistic health junkie, and the voice behind The Foundation Blog. She is currently getting her doctorate degree in integrative health and healing and is passionate about helping women maximize their health by simple and foundational health practices. Our hope is that this conversation will empower you to do research and make informed decisions for that time of the month.

Finding The Balance

  • Kate took a year off from being a nurse in the Mayo Clinic to work on her sister Jenna Kutcher's Goal Digger Podcast. During this time, she realized her passion for integrative health.
  • “What are you doing when you’re putting off something else?”
  • She knows that areas of Western medicine need improvement, but also recognizes that this medicine is the reason we are alive today after seeing it in action in the ICU.
  • However, chronic conditions that plague our country prove a need for a shift toward the holistic. We need to look at sleep, stress, and diet.
  • “I feel very at home in this spot in the middle.”

Becoming A Woman

“Everything in my life was very natural but yet I was still controlling this really natural and beautiful cycle.”

  • Kate never felt any shame around her period. “I just felt honored and excited about it.”
  • Her periods were regular but were more frequent than they should have been. “It takes a while to normalize your cycle.”
  • Wanting to prevent this near constant bleeding, she tried the NuvaRing but ultimately settled on the Mirena IUD which allowed her to continue ovulating.

Cons of Hormonal Contraceptive

  • “I completely trust my fellow woman to make the choice that is best for her. There is an option that is right for everybody.”
  • The hormones in contraceptives are not the exact hormones your body would make. 
  • Hormonal contraception often suppress ovulation and ultimately suppress hormones that are natural and have important benefits.
  • “You’re inhibiting a very natural process that goes a lot deeper than just your period.”

The Phases Of Your Cycle

Ladies + Gents--the below is just an overview...you gotta listen to the whole episode to get the goods of each phase of your cycle!

1. Menstruation/Winter

  • Day 1: shedding the uterine lining.
  • You’re maybe feeling moody or withdrawn, experiencing cramps, and a need to slow down. It’s like the ‘winter’ season of the cycle.
    1. Follicular/Spring
  • Day 3 or 4: Follicle stimulating hormone is working on the dominant egg.
  • More energy in this phase, almost like stepping back into your skin.
  • This time is good for creative projects and you’ll experience clear thinking.
  • “You feel energetic and attractive... it’s just a really vibrant time.”
    1. Ovulation/Summer
  • Body releases egg as the pituitary gland signals for it to release.
  • “You can’t kind of ovulate—you either ovulate or you don’t.”
  • High energy, high sex drive, you feel attractive. Your hormones even make you more attractive to those around you. There is a study that shows a correlation between a woman’s scent during ovulation and a man’s attraction to her.
    1. Luteal/Fall
  • Progesterone—can make you moody and somber, but it’s really important.
  • “It is the yin to estrogen’s yang.”
  • Progesterone is calming, helps sleep, reduces inflammation, + builds muscles.
  • “The shift from being so estrogen dominant at parts of your cycle to progesterone dominant causes an influx of emotion—what we see as PMS.”

Getting To Know Your Period

“Your period health says a lot about your overall health.”

  1. Track Your Cycle!
  • Kate journals every morning and will write about how she is feeling on the previous day of her cycle. A few key words is all you need—nothing flashy!
  • Kate uses the Ava app and Kat uses the My Flo app. 
  • “Your period story does not have to be suffering every month.”
    1. Books To Read:
  • The Period Repair Manual by Laura Briden (textbook info in novel format)
  • Hormonal by Martie Haselton (quick + easy relatable read) 

Thoughts On Period Products

  • Thoughts on tampons? “Invest in organic—it does matter.” Regular tampons are covered in toxins.
  • Thoughts on menstrual cups? Tampons are single use and create waste so this is a great alternative. Kate uses OrganiCup and LOVES it. “I can’t believe I lived for so long without using it.” It’s easy to clean—simply boil between cycles. It may not be for everybody—some women say they experience more cramps using a cup.
  • Thoughts on Thinx? Kate hasn’t tried them, but Kat has some friends that swear by them and only use them during their periods. 
  • “Whatever makes you feel most at home and comfortable with your period… I say go for it.”

You can keep up with Kate on Instagram at @kate.eskuri or at her website thefoundationblog.com. She shares everything from safe ways to grow out your eyelashes to yummy recipes. She has a post specifically about acupressure for periods too! “It all comes back to the base of introducing small integrative habits into your day to live your most balanced and vibrant life.” You can sign up for her email list to get secret special content that nobody else sees! If you join now you can see her evening rituals for better sleep and her all-natural grocery shopping guide. 

If you like the podcast, I want to invite you to subscribe to the podcast and leave a rating and review. It helps us to get the episode out to more people and means the world to us! We’d love to hear your reactions to this specific episode and what topics you want to hear more of!

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! With you on the journey.

XO,

Kat 

Aug 21, 2019
Pursuing Purpose Regardless of Your Season
57:29

 

Today, we are very lucky to have one of my dear friends, Dianna Bautista, on the podcast. We go way back—she once gave me my dream Beyoncé haircut (from her XO music video) in my kitchen. She used to work as a celebrity hair stylist, but now she lives and works in Thailand, where she helps men and women come out of sex trafficking through her nonprofit, Shear International. This episode, we talk about living life to the fullest regardless of the season you are in (cough cough:  whether you’re married or not). She talks about her journey of healing from an abusive marriage, and why she is loving her season of singleness.

 

The WHY

 “I don’t want any woman to ever experience what I have experienced.”

 

  • The town she lives in is widely recognized as the sex tourism capital of the world. 
  • She goes into brothels, pays pimps for time with a girl, and sits to talk with them. After they build trust with these women, they help them to see that there are ways out.
  • When she was little, she was unable to use her voice to help her brother who was a victim of sexual abuse. After she came home from a trip where she witnessed similar abuse, she was encouraged by her brother to use the voice she has now.
  • “There is no room in this world for complacency.”

 

Red Flags

“My faith meant something to me and I just thought it was okay that he ‘respected’ what I believed.”

  • She only realized after the fact that he did not dedicate enough time to her. “I felt only worthy of what he was willing to give me.”
  • Ladies: just because he is treating you better than other men have does NOT mean he is treating you well. “Any attention he gave me was good enough.”
  • “The way that you allow people to treat you is how they will always treat you.”

 

Pursuing Wholeness

“We need those friends in our lives who are willing to risk putting up the mirror.”

  • These friends help us confront truths, even when they are really hard to confront.
  • “His addiction to porn became such shame to me.”
  • It took her years of therapy and healing to realize that it had nothing to do with her. “That was his shame, not mine.”
  • Healing is a long process. “You don’t get to come out free the other side unless you do the work.”
  • She acknowledges that the healing process is often even more painful than what you need healing from—it’s like breaking a bone.

 

Healing takes TIME.

“I want the man of my prayers, not the man of my dreams.”

 

  • The healing is not only a slow process, but it’s also a never-ending process. “I’ll be on my journey until the day I die.”
  • Too often, we put our lives on pause because we feel it can’t fully start until we have that one person to do it with. Lady Dianna is doing all of this single.
  • Though she would be happy to be in a relationship, she is happy where she now.
  • I’m choosing to desire what God wants for me right now because the path I wanted to be on was never going to be a good idea.”
  • God’s best for you is better than you can imagine. “I want the man of my prayers, not the man of my dreams.”

 

We were unexpectedly cut off as we were wrapping up because her Wi-Fi went out, but I hope this conversation has been as encouraging for you as it has been for me. She is living her calling and I want women all over the world to hear her story and realize they don’t need to wait for their life to start. Check out her nonprofit Shear Love International where you can learn  more about it and support her by giving monthly donations. Also, I want to give a shoutout to her admin Sara who has been such a supporter of the podcast!

 

If you like the podcast, I want to invite you to subscribe to the podcast and leave a rating and review. It helps us to get the episode out to more people and means the world to us! 

 

Hey, single ladies— are you frustrated by the dating world? This episode is brought to you by my free guide called “6 Tips to Activate Your Dating Life with Intention and Clarity.” These resources helped propel me from sitting on the couch to out on a date. Head over to Bit.ly/trwdating to check it out! With you on the journey.

 

Fab Fit Fun is a seasonal subscription box that has FULL-SIZED beauty, fitness, fashion, and lifestyle products and I am so obsessed, y’all. The contents always have a worth of about $200 the boxes only cost $49.99! A few of my favorites from this box: a travel yoga mat, Vitamin C serum, and a gold eye mask. Even better? You get to customize what goes into your box! If you’ve ever thought about trying it—now is the time! If you go to www.fabfitfun.com and use code TRW, you’ll get $10 off your first box! 

 

XO,

Kat

Aug 14, 2019
The 5 Productivity Hacks You Need In Your Life
55:39

 

Ashlyn Carter is a baller at marketing, copywriting, and productivity hacks. A lot of you have had questions like “how do I stay productive in my day to day life?” “how do I pursue my side hustle?” and “how do I work from home and stay motivated?” 

Well, there is no better person to guide you through this than the one and only: Ashlyn Carter.

How She Got Started

“This job that I was in was never going to be okay with me taking rest.”

  • Out of college, she worked in marketing and then in PR. When she made an effort to keep Sundays free from work, her boss told her she was in the wrong industry!

  • She began to focus her control on her body and her eating and ultimately recognized she was suffering from anorexia, anxiety, and depression. After her wedding, she took steps toward healing and spent three months hospitalized.

  • Soon after, she decided she wanted to work for herself so she started her own business.

The Turning Point

  • Mindset is critical when you are starting a new pursuit. “I looked at my new job as a business owner not a freelancer.”

  • “It’s never been a better time to start a business, but at the same time it’s never been a noisier place.”

  • Ashlyn used what she knew from marketing to excel in her new business. She would reach out to people who needed help, and slowly began to make a dent in the industry. “I found the Ashlyn-sized gap in the market.” 

Being Organized As An Entrepreneur

  • Ashlyn got obsessive about her work because she was determined to not go back to her old job. Because of this, she found herself back where she started working 7 days a week. 

  • She wanted to set up a business that could run when she couldn’t work so she began “Ashlyn-proofing” her business with outlines and structures.

  • It’s not going to change if you don’t make it a priority.

Productivity Hacks

  1. Get a Parking Lot

  • It’s important to have a constant space where you can put any idea in your head and know that it is logged and captured.

  • This helps fight the shiny object syndrome.

  1. Make Lists

  • At the end of the month, she looks at her to-do list and asks herself what felt like a “to do” and what actually was a “to do.”

  • When it comes to realizing the difference, she sets annual goals and re-reads them every single week. Seeing these big goals alongside her daily “to do”s helps her to choose well.

  • “What is actually going to inch me towards who I want to be at the end of 2019?”

  1. Be Nosy

  • Pay attention to how people are spending their time.  Be curious. Try new hacks out. Keep it if it works. If it doesn’t work: throw it out.

  1. Weekly Review

“You don’t get rewarded for what you intend to do; you get rewarded for what you DO.”

  • Every week Ashlyn asks herself these 4 questions:

  • What worked and didn’t work from this week?

  • What lessons did I learn?

  • What obstacles did I run into?

  • How am I going to adjust moving forward?

  1. Batching

  • Divide your business into five big topics you need to get done. Assign each big topic to a day of the week. i.e. Marketing, meetings, finance, client work, etc. 

  • This brings back the structure that encourages us to get work done.

Ashlyn leaves us with these wonderful words of wisdom: “Even if you never slept you still wouldn’t be able to meet the expectations everyone is putting on you.” Head over to her website AshlynWrites.com where you can get her freebies and sign up for her AMAZING emails!!

You guys are still going crazy over last week’s episode of my recap of The Bachelorette! If you haven’t listened yet, hop over and do that after listening to this episode! If you like the podcast, I want to invite you to subscribe to the podcast and leave a rating and review. It helps us to get the episode out to more people!

Fab Fit Fun is a seasonal subscription box that has FULL-SIZED beauty, fitness, fashion, and lifestyle products and I am so obsessed, y’all. The contents always have a worth of about $200 the boxes only cost $49.99! A few of my favorites from this box: a travel yoga mat, Vitamin C serum, and a gold eye mask. Even better? You get to customize what goes into your box! If you’ve ever thought about trying it—now is the time! If you go to www.fabfitfun.com and use code TRW, you’ll get $10 off your first box! 

Aug 08, 2019
How To Identify The Subtle Fears That Are Keeping You Stuck
01:12:59

This week’s conversation with my friend Dr. Shannon Irvine means so much to me because we’re talking about the idea of taking our thoughts captive and rewiring our brains. Fear can be subtle, so we often accept certain things in life that keep us stuck. Do you ever think “I’m just always going to be the bridesmaid,” “There are too many people with a similar message in my industry—why would I even try?” It’s time to remove fear from the driver’s seat of your life. Dr. Shannon helps entrepreneurs train their thinking to transform their businesses and their whole lives. She has a PhD in neuropsychology, where she studies the science of success. 

The Science of the Brain

  • Minds are neutral—that is why scripture says to renew your mind.
  • Our brain is automated, but once we take our brain off of autopilot we can decide if the narratives we have been following are actually serving us well.
  • Habits of a successful person: “What they’ve repeated over and over again is the truth according to the better versions of themselves.”
  • Thoughts move like they’re on the freeway + have to jump if they’re to get off the path.
  • When we repeat thoughts, the ‘freeways’ become glued together/automated.
  • Most people think good habits take 21 days, but it really takes about 60-67 days to stop the old thoughts and choose to make your mind go to the new thoughts.

How To Manage Your Thoughts

  • Sit down and say “God, what do you want? Where are we going?”
  • Think “I will become the creator of my thoughts.”
  • Recognize that your thoughts create your reality.
  • Look around at your life—that is evidence of your subconscious programming.
  • Bottom line: stop being on autopilot.

Trust The Process

  • Go through a typical day and recognize when you’re feeling tired, stressed, in resistance, in tension.
  • “Does that thought take me to where I want to be or keep me from it?”
  • If you want to amplify it: put yourself in situations that stress you out with the intention of hearing the thoughts.
  • All of us, particularly women, have negativity bias where we think more negative thoughts toward ourselves than toward others.

The Four ‘R’ Process

  1. Recognition
  • Focusing on the thoughts will not amplify them, it will help us address them.
  1. Record
  • Write down the thought exactly as it came up in your mind.
  1. Removing/Refuting
  • Choose somebody you love more than anything, and say out loud your thought but place it on that person (not to their face though!!). This will make you