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Living Strong: The Flip Side of Adversity

Religion & Spirituality Podcas

Resilience isn’t about bouncing back, but bouncing forward. Living Strong: The Flip Side of Adversity brings powerful stories and fearless conversations from experts in the field of business, relationships, emotional, physical and mental health, and faith-based communities together to give practical insight on how there is always a flip side to every story. Each episode creates a brave space that combines proven lessons from neuroscience, powerful tools from authentic connection, key principles from life lessons, and practical promises from faith-based insights. Trauma, toxic stress, broken habits and hurting hearts don’t define destiny, but peace isn’t passive. It requires an exchange. To create a flip and access peace in the middle of the pieces, you are challenged to make an exchange of the lies that have kept you mentally hostage in basement moments for a Steps of Growth framework, which cultivates a shift toward growth planning and forward movement.


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Resilience isn’t about bouncing back, but bouncing forward. Living Strong: The Flip Side of Adversity brings powerful stories and fearless conversations from experts in the field of business, relationships, emotional, physical and mental health, and faith-based communities together to give practical insight on how there is always a flip side to every story. Each episode creates a brave space that combines proven lessons from neuroscience, powerful tools from authentic connection, key principles from life lessons, and practical promises from faith-based insights. Trauma, toxic stress, broken habits and hurting hearts don’t define destiny, but peace isn’t passive. It requires an exchange. To create a flip and access peace in the middle of the pieces, you are challenged to make an exchange of the lies that have kept you mentally hostage in basement moments for a Steps of Growth framework, which cultivates a shift toward growth planning and forward movement.




Breaking Generational Curses

How do you deal with dysfunctional love and negative words from your past? How did those experiences affect the way you approach relationships yourself and others now? Let’s talk about breaking free from toxic mindsets and negativity legacies passed down to us. Breaking, dropping, and leaving habits that no longer serve us - even though they may have been given to us to survive. We are talking about practical steps and moments to actively work towards breaking these cycles and cultivating growth, thriving opportunities, and creating turning points with Michele Steele.


Encore Disruption Is Necessary For Destiny

Some people are uncomfortable with the disruption that change causes, but the disruption is necessary if anything is going to change. After our first year of hosting Flip Side Stories with amazing guests, the power of leveraging disruptions to navigate discomfort and access destiny moments has never been more relevant for me. Join me for our one year anniversary show and highlights from the top ten shows. Change is the only constant in life and I have learned so much form guests this year about resilience in change and moving forward. If you have felt like quitting? Have you thought the last interruption derailed your opportunities? Are you exhausted from uncertainty and change? I am picking the most powerful lessons from past quests that have kept me moving forward in this new adventure… creating my Flip Side moments on the other side of uncertainty, discomfort, and vulnerability. Tune in for bright spots, clear strategies, and the chance to change perspective and push forward in your passion.


Real Leaders - Relate, Grow, Listen

We all crave connection and belonging. Our conversation will focus on how intentionally prioritizing connection creates an atmosphere of belonging for the staff we partner with and the families we serve. When our programs were afforded the opportunity for coaching from a trauma-informed lens, we understood this must also include the program leadership. We highly value the idea of professional and personal growth, and we realize that we must be willing to be vulnerable to the growth process in order to partner with our staff to grow in their own ways. In turn, our home visitors partner with families in this same growth process, so one of the core concepts we have embraced is that our work is a parallel process. We value the relationships we have with each other and with each individual staff member. We imbed strategies into our work to ensure there is space for relationship building. We utilize reflective supervision on a consistent basis to make every effort for each person to feel seen, heard and valued. Reflective supervision is a concrete example of where we listen with the intention of hearing that person’s perspective, and we actively listen for opportunities for affirmation. Apart from individual relationships, we work to create a culture of community care, a place where all staff members feel safe and open to exploring change in the way we do our work. We are grateful to have the opportunity to be part of this work with the groups of people we are privileged to work with, and we have learned to focus not as much on what we do, but how we do it. We know it is who we are as people that makes the difference to all of our relationships, both in work environments and outside of work.


Encore Flipping powerless to Power-FULL

Have you felt “less” than yourself lately… hopeless, helpless, powerless. When everything feels turned upside down, even in that moment, we can shift our thought life from obstacle to opportunity. This season has had me encounter so many people devastated by turmoil, and I found myself struggling to remain an influence and not get infected by helplessness and hopelessness. So I have found myself returning to life lessons that have brought me through and FILLED my soul in the process. So it’s just you and me kid this week! I am sharing my story, my strategies, and my life lessons on Flipping powerless to Power-FULL. You get the mic and can ask me your questions… no, I may not know your story but I know your story is not meant to end here. So this week let’s lean in together, ask the hard questions, and get strategic about intentional areas that catapulted our growth , even when it was uncomfortable.


From Adversity to Authenticity: Unmasking the True Self

Life's journey brings adversity, challenging our spirit and resilience. Among inspiring stories, Dr. Norma Hollis shines, charting a path from setbacks to self-awareness. Norma's path wasn't paved with privileges or golden chances. Starting in non-profits, she transitioned to entrepreneurship, taking risks and defining her path. In cities like Detroit, Norma underscored childhood development's significance. Believing early years shape futures, she launched a process to detect early learning problems, helping many children in academics. Norma also saw a gap in the speaking arena: underrepresented Black voices. She founded a speaker bureau, becoming the first Black woman to own one representing Black speakers. Business presents hurdles and uncertainties. But for Norma, every obstacle was growth. Her Authenticity Grid and the concept of Return on Authenticity (ROA) merged personal growth with organizational achievement. Over 25 years, Norma's determination faced tests. Her unwavering vision and resilience transformed challenges into lessons, becoming a source of inspiration for budding entrepreneurs. Today, Dr. Norma Hollis stands for perseverance and genuine pursuit. Her story transcends business; it's about personal evolution amidst chaos and the power of authenticity. This article invites readers to step into Norma's world, embracing her journey and lessons. It's a tale of authenticity, confronting adversity, and a message that it's never too late for self-discovery. For those seeking hope, Norma's journey is a beacon.


The Pastors’ Diaries

We all have heard the saying that ‘Hurt People, Hurt People’ but what happens when those hurt people are our leaders, our encouragers and our pastors? How do those who have been wounded the most by the church, make sure they don’t in turn hurt the church? Pastors’ deal with a high level of pressure to perform and behave perfectly as they have been placed on a pedestal. The pastor must be healthy in order to lead a healthy church. Understanding the unrealistic demands that pastors are to be perfect, is what keeps them from being transparent, authentic and able to get the help they made need themselves. Pastors must embrace humility, seek grace and learn to forgive themselves as well as those they have been called to shepherd. The Pastors’ Diaries gives us a transparent look behind the pulpit into the lives of those who have been called to pastor and their personal challenges that could lead to tragedy if left unattended.


Every Family is their Own Best Resource for Change

The relationship between supporter/ provider and the family is a powerful one and a connection that impacts both provider and parent. As humans, we bring deeply engrained approaches to how we relate, connect, posture, and listen to each other. The art and science of supporting families seeking care, insight, and sometimes a “lifeline” is to point them back to their strengths, resources, alliances, and the solutions they already hold within their own power. If we are honest, we all (family and provider alike) can lose sight of our power, our plans for the future, and hope for tomorrow. Let’s talk about the parallel process of self awareness, regulation, and growth for both partners in this thing called “life”.


Connect. Heal. Learn. Build.

What important role does a village play? It is said that the village is the source of strength, wellness, and liberation for Black people. As the Founder and CEO of Maggie’s Village LLC and champion of Black educators, Bridgett Hitchings uses a Connect. Heal. Learn. Build. Framework to strengthen the village and curate affinity spaces for growth in order to experience joy and foster nurturing. Much of her passion comes from her own flip side story of a strong village that prepared her for a time such as this. Join us for a call to action to Black educators and the people who support them in doing this important work to Connect. Heal. Learn. and Build. an affirming education, together, for Black students.


Beyond Her Yes

For mothers living in poverty, especially generational poverty, saying yes to a pregnancy is only the beginning of the journey. These women lack resources, support, finances, and hope. While pregnancy centers succeed in providing aid during pregnancy, impoverished mothers are left to fight a solitary battle for the life of their child every day after birth. Marisol Maldonado Rodriguez calls for a movement to make a lasting change in the lives of women experiencing generational poverty, poor maternal care, life changing choices, and devastating demands. She argues that this requires broadening perspectives and learning about poverty in order to address the root of the problem of the struggle Beyond Her Yes.


PO' UP! Amplifying the Black College Experience

When you think about Black college experiences, what comes to mind? HBCUs? Homecoming? Step shows? Lizz Rene - the Founder of PO' UP! Card Game - is a first-generation college graduate bridging the gap between the experiences of Black college students and alumni through nostalgia, game play and Black Excellence. PO' UP! is a party game celebrating the experiences, traditions and legacy of Black college students and grads. In this episode, she discusses what makes the Black college experience so special and how she made the pivot into being a fulltime game maker after being laid off from her job in tech in January 2023.


Find Your Strength - How to become a priority in your own life!

Dionna (Coach Dee) Harris will share her personal wellness journey and how she managed to fight her way back from the unhealthiest point in her life. We will discuss her transition from corporate America to owning her own business. We’ll have an honest conversation about the struggles that come along with being a black woman in business and how she teach others to fight through the challenges of life to tap into their strength from within. She would love to discuss some of the most common myths about fitness and nutrition - and why motivation isn't something we should even be concerned with.


Ask Dr. V???

We are creating this quarterly episode to educate, encourage, and empower listeners with practical tools from the desk of Dr. V in order to live fearlessly. We invite you to be a part of this series of episodes. This quarter, Dr. V focuses on real conversation about resilience and strength. Dr. V welcomes questions from our listeners pursuing resilience goals and healing from our pitfalls. The reality of uncertainty can zap our hope, deplete our souls, and deflate our bounce. Let's talk about strength... not striving. And how the skills of resilience can offer strategy for work life harmony, soul care, productivity, and adaptability. Send us your questions on maintaining your bounce and redefining strength.


Happily Married Couples: Navigating Adversity Together

Join Jackie Bledsoe, bestselling author and marriage expert, as he transparently shares his marriage story and insights on how couples can thrive through adversity. In this special segment of Living Strong, Jackie explores the flip side of challenges in marriage, revealing the hidden opportunities for growth, connection, and lasting love. Discover practical tips, real-life experiences, and the power of a Christ-centered foundation in building and sustaining happily married couples. Get ready to transform your relationship and conquer life's storms together.


Encore: Transform Your Passion Into Action

The world is full to the brim with passionate people! What would happen if those same passionate people transformed their passions into action? Our schools would be better! Our communities would be safer! Our relationships would be healthier! How do we get there? Dr. Stephanie Brown has three passions that electrify her life… faith, education, and writing. During the Pandemic Lockdown of 2020, God transformed her passions into action to address the lack of representation of characters of color in children’s literature and in curriculum. In fact, a survey of 3,716 books surveyed in 2019 indicated that only 11.9% had main characters that were African American. Animal character ranked at over 20% (Herndon, 2020). So, to transform her impact on education, her community, and the minds of children, she wrote and published a children’s book in 2021 called, “She Looks Like Me!”, where the main character is a spunky and curious little African American girl named Elena. The purpose of the book is to teach children about hidden figures in Black History and provide parents and educators with recommendations on how to promote diversity in children’s book at home and in the classroom. The impact of, “She Looks Like Me!” has been tremendous! The book has been read aloud in classrooms all over Philadelphia, bought by educators nationwide and the support keeps growing! Dr. Brown has also created an educational resource hub called I AM Educational Series that provides free lesson plans for teachers and parents in Black History and in Women’s History. And… On MLK Day 2022, a second book, “She Looks Like Me!: The Activity Book”, will be released to give kids an opportunity to reinforce their knowledge of hidden figures in Black History through building fine motor skills, word searches, matching, coloring and more! The Activity Book also comes with a lesson plan.


Encore: 50th Episode Celebration

We are celebrating our 50th Episode with Grammy Award Winning Producer and Flipside of Adversity Engineer, Keith Pelzer. Sometimes new tasks can become the most important part of our lives. But we have to take the risk first, in order to achieve new things. In March of 2020, Living Strong Consulting had to create a huge pivot in order to survive and; often, choosing the person to bring your vulnerable ideas to can catapult or crush your confidence to succeed. We have had success beyond anything I could have imagined over the last two years, and people often ask … How do you keep growing against rollercoaster odds? Well… “The reward is in the risk. No one ever ascended a mountain without risk.” There have been three key components to our climb during the pandemic: Faith, Friendship, and Flipside stories. And the first step was connecting with a like-minded partner in crime willing to climb, dream, and create right along side of my adventure. Pastor, Producer, and Creative Keith Pelzer has been that person. It all started with a “YES” and possibility grew from there. What are you hesitating to say yes to because you can not be certain of the outcome? How are you allowing growth to remain on pause because you are afraid of risk? Are you playing safe and sabotaging your plan? Log into my conversation with the thought partner behind our radical shift, innovative changes, and traction for growth. We will share strategies, mindset, and technical tips to continuing to innovate in a season of change. We are not looking to bounce back to anything. Our bounce is forward with a momentum of an up and down climb with risks and learned lessons at each twist and turn. But we are not turning back. Join us on 4/28 @5pm EST for a lot of laughs and practical tips for your Flip!


Encore: Digging Destiny out of Dirt

Have you ever felt like you were digging yourself into a hole you may never get out of, or you’ve been pushed into a hole that may feel like your dead end. In this week’s Flip Side story, my Guest Co-host and Author, Latoya Thompson, will lead us into a conversation about transitioning after the disruption of divorce to find a door of deliberate growth. And with any growth story, we will encounter dirt, but LaToya will define the two perspectives we can have about dirt in our experiences and we’ll have real talk about how our choices either keep us constantly digging or constructively planting.


Encore: Networking is a Verb: Collaboration, Co-Creation, & Partnership

“It's possible for anyone to overcome their challenges and it's never too late to live purposefully. My family and I survived civil war; that's shaped the way that I do life professionally and personally. Whether you started out with a great start, or you come from humble beginnings, everyone has a story to tell. Once I discovered what God was calling me to do in my community, it's shaped the businesses I've launched, the relationships I invest in, and how I position myself to know what He wants me to do next.” Originally from Freetown, Sierra Leone, Andrena Sawyer and her family moved to the United States when she was nine years old due to a civil war that left thousands dead and untold numbers maimed and displaced. She now credits her family's move during the war for her interest in human triumph and perseverance. She has since actively worked to mobilize and empower others. She is the President of P.E.R.K. Consulting, an advisory firm for small to mid-sized nonprofits and businesses, and the Founder of the Minority Christian Women Entrepreneurs Network. Her passion for community, storytelling, and empowerment show up in The Minority Christian Women Entrepreneurs Network (MCWEN). MCWEN is a thriving community for Christian women of color who have an interest in entrepreneurship and business ownership. Using the Proverbs 31 woman as a model, MCWEN seeks to support women to become impactful and positively influential in their homes, community, and at work. For us, it's not just business as usual. Networking is an action work. Let’s get to work, TOGETHER!


Being The Best Version Of You

Success is not a destination. It is a life-long strategy of empowerment that builds on strengths, minimizes weaknesses, and focuses on the people and points of life that are most important. To reach our potential, we must be intentional about personal, spiritual, and mental growth. Join me in a conversation with Yvonne Richardson, entrepreneur, master stylist, mentor, content creator, and…. My “accountability partner” for growth! It’s time for R.E.A.L. Talk (Relationships, Elevation, Attitude, and Leadership) that’s not just around “goal setting” but getting a growth mindset in 2023.


From NFL to Prison Cell and Back

Stay tuned for our next episode of Living Strong: The Flip Side of Adversity when we talk with Dr. Irving Fryar about his Flip Side story of “From NFL to Prison Cell and Back’. Fryar retired from the NFL in 2001 after completing 17 NFL seasons. During that time, he caught 851 passes for 12,785 yards and 84 touchdowns, and 15,594 all-purpose yards. Fryar's 255 played games are the most ever for a New Jersey-born player. From the #1 draft pick in the NFL to the prison cell. We are having a “Then and Now” conversation with Pastor, Counselor, Community Leader, and Speaker- Dr. Irving Fryar. Dr. Fryar’s flip-side story has included seasons of victory, pain, regret, and recovery on and off the field. Join us on Sept. 2nd at 5:00 pm EST for his life lessons and hear his life mission to be a great witness of the Gospel by letting his life be a living example of Jesus Christ.


Don't Tell Me What I Can Do

This conversation with Dr. Claudia Curry will focus on issues of isolation, self doubt, rejection, and low expectations that impact women and will empower women to persist. Don’t tell me what I can’t do!” is intended to be a resource and support for women to take matters into their own hands and create a Flip in their story.