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Rhett Smith Podcast

Therapist + Writer + Speaker In this long-form interview format Rhett explores the lives of various thought leaders to discover what helped them thrive in multiple areas of their lives, and what lessons we can learn from them. Rhett is particularly interested in the intersection of self-care and relationships, and he loves to explore how one can thrive physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. He interacts with people such as therapists, athletes, spiritual leaders, entrepreneurs and many others, covering a variety of topics from fitness, leadership, mental health, and spirituality. What would your marriage look like when you are thriving? What does your parenting look like when you are thriving? What does your work look like when you are thriving? What does your faith look like when you are thriving? When we thrive in these areas of our lives we become people who are "life-giving." And when we are "life-givers" we impact all the relationships around us in positive ways. So engage the podcast and discover how you can thrive personally and relationally.
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Now displaying: June, 2015
Jun 24, 2015

I enjoy interviewing all the guests on my podcast. It's a huge privilege to be able to talk with such amazing people. And this one was really special as I got to interview one of the former students in my college ministry. Between 2001-2008 I was on staff at Bel Air Presbyterian Church in Los Angeles, CA, serving as the college pastor from 2002-2008. And in that time I was really blessed to serve alongside some amazing students from UCLA, USC, LMU and a scattering of other schools. There was also a huge contingent of college-age kids in the ministry who weren't in school, but came out to pursue music, film, fashion and more. It was a really unique group that taught me a lot.

 

And in about 2004 I met a then sophomore at UCLA, Melissa Ponce, who is now Dr. Melissa Esguerra. I remember Melissa as someone who was really passionate about her faith, compassionate towards others, and who always seemed to have a smile on her face. And it was great having her as a part of that ministry at that time. It's been about 11 years since I first met Melissa, and probably about 8-9 years since I last saw her (except at a mutual wedding perhaps). And even though we don't see each other in person, it's been fun to watch her journey online. And over the last year or so I've really been inspired by the work that Melissa is up to, and a lot of her messages resonate with my own journey. I appreciate Melissa sharing her own story of being sick in college and going on a journey to heal through various means such as food, sleep, exercise, etc. It's very much the journey I have found myself on these last couple of years...trying to optimize how I feel through taking care of myself physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.

 

Melissa wears a lot of different hats and is passionate about a lot of things, but primarily she is a Doctor of Functional Medicine who is interested in the whole person. She is holistic in her approach and in this episode we cover several different topics from women's health, to feeling tired, sleep, food, and faith. This is a pretty fast episode and there was so much more I would have loved to talk with her about, but our schedules prevented it. Next time I have Melissa back on I want to dive in deep with her on a couple of topics, and I want to hear more about her online program that she is launching. To find out more about that, just go here to sign up and receive more information. Some of the topics we cover are:

  • women's health issues (what are some of the common issues Melissa sees)
  • the always "feeling tired" feeling that many people struggle with.
  • sleep: what does healthy sleep look like?
  • food and diet
  • faith

Please listen and subscribe to my podcast in the following places, and then leave a comment letting me know what you liked about the show, or what guest you would like to hear from. Thank you so much for your support.

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Resources and Links Discussed in the Episode

Website:. Dr. Melissa Esguerra

Anatomy of the Spirit: The Seven Stages of Power and Healing by Caroline Myss

The New Feminine Brain: How Women Can Develop Their Inner Strengths, Genius, and Intuition by Mona Lisa Schulz and Christianne Northrup

Jun 21, 2015

Anxiety is a struggle that everyone has experienced at some point in their lives. Anxiety is part of the human condition whether we like it or not. But while some people seem to experience little anxiety, others feel their life is consumed with it. I've shared in countless contexts how I struggled for a good part of my life with anxiety until I finally began to face it and use it as an opportunity for growth in my life. In episode 13 of this podcast I explored the topic of anxiety and one can begin to identify anxiety in their own life story, as well as learning to begin to reframe it as a catalyst for growth, rather than an enemy waiting to crush you. In that podcast I mentioned how I would follow up with an episode exploring the various tools and techniques one can use to manage and reframe anxiety. So in this episode I talk about:

  • the tool of reframing anxiety
  • how self-care (physical, emotional, mental and spiritual) helps manage anxiety
  • breathing techniques to help with anxiety
  • meditation techniques and tools to help navigate anxiety
  • connecting our spiritual life to our breathing and meditation techniques
  • how listening to your anxiety can help you grow from it
  • why journaling is a powerful tool in helping one depersonalize it
  • how you can use 3 x 5 cards to navigate through anxiety
  • books on anxiety that will help you grow from it
  • the role of the "Pain and Peace Cycle" in understanding the roots of your anxiety
  • and how medications can help, but why it's the last option I explore

Please listen and subscribe to my podcast in the following places, and then leave a comment letting me know what you liked about the show, or what guest you would like to hear from. Thank you so much for your support.

iTunes

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Resources/Links Discussed in the Show
Mindfulness -- Taking Time to Breathe
Headspace
Don't Panic with Andrew Johnson -- iPhone app
Public Speaking with Andrew Johnson -- iPhone app
Relax Lite with Andrew Johnson -- iPhone app
Mindfulness -- Connecting Breathe to our Prayer
Baby Steps to Self-Care
The Anxious Christian: Can God Use Your Anxiety for Good? by Rhett Smith
Things Might Go Terribly, Horribly Wrong: A Guide to Life Liberated from Anxiety by Kelly G. Wilson and Troy Dufrene
Fear and Trembling by Soren Kierkegaard
Be Not Anxious: Pastoral Care of Disquieted Souls by Allan Hugh Cole Jr.
The Meaning of Anxiety by Rollo May
Jun 16, 2015

About 5 weeks ago I was perusing through Instagram and I came across the feed of lvtrailrunner. I have been following lvtrailrunner (aka Benji Zimmerman) online for quite a while, and I have really been inspired by what he posts, especially his amazing trail running photos. But something different caught my eye this day...it was what he had to say on that post that really captured me. Benji wrote:

"Some days life isn't in color. For many of us anxiety, depression and many other mental health issues loom in the shadows of our lives, but some days those shadows overtake our colorful world. Today was one of those days for me. Days like today are hard to explain to those who don't share the same struggle. If you are someone who struggles like I do with depression; stay the course, talk to your counselor, eat right, workout, take your medications if necessary but above all cling to hope. The color will return. The storm will pass. Breathe in. Breathe out."

Such beautiful, and powerful, and vulnerable, and inspiring words. And though I had already planned on contacting him for my podcast, that was the catalyst to reach out to him immediately. Benji has an inspiring story (and we only get a glimpse of it in the podcast) of both dark and light, intermingling to bring forth hope, faith and redemption out of his pain. His story is full of examples of this: survivor of suicide, recovering addict, father, husband, missions pastor and social media director, trailrunner, Christ follower..and those are just a few of the labels that I use to describe someone in which labels don't fit or do he or his story justice. In this episode we cover a lot of territory, but really focus on the intersection of running, mental health and faith. Those are three topics that I'm passionate about and I could have talked to Benji about them all day. In this podcast I talk with Benji about:

  • his attempted suicide as a teenager.
  • his finding hope in missions/service.
  • his struggle with depression.
  • his journey into a runner (and from road to trail).
  • his faith formation in the "desert".
  • what running on the trails, and without headphones has taught him about being present.
  • what he does to achieve balance.
  • how he takes care of himself.
  • inner noticing.
  • his struggle with addiction and depression and how diet, running/exercise and his faith helped transform that.
  • Etc.

Please listen and subscribe to my podcast in the following places, and then leave a comment letting me know what you liked about the show, or what guest you would like to hear from. Thank you so much for your support.

iTunes

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Resources/Links Discussed in the Show

Benji's Instagram

Benji's Twitter

Benji's Website

Running and Being: The Total Experience by George Sheehan

Carlos Whitaker: What Does Your Depression Feel Like? Mine Feels Like This...

Sarah Stanley

The Crossing Church

People of the Second Chance (POTSC)

Freeway Curriculum (POTSC)

Jun 8, 2015

I first met Aubrey McGowan approximately in the summer of 2010. And like some other stories you have previously heard on this podcast, we met at the ECHO Conference in Dallas. At that time Aubrey was leading worship (as well as doing all kinds of other things...mentoring, vision casting, etc.) at Hope Fellowship in Frisco, TX. Since our first meeting a deep friendship has formed and I have really come to admire a lot of things about him. Two things in particular that have stood out to me over the last five years is Aubrey's generous spirit and his ability to solve problems and build just about anything.

 

Over the course of the last couple of years I noticed our conversations had shifted in some ways as Aubrey began to wrestle with new questions. There was a restlessness in him that God was calling him to step out and do some different things, but there was also a very patient steadfastness as he prayed, made plans, and listened to God's direction in his life.

 

I've really enjoyed watching Aubrey and his wife Jen's journey over this last year as they have ventured off into a new adventure. And their journey has been inspiring. Aubrey has many talents and gifts. He a worship artist. He's a writer. And he and his wife (and kids) are super crafty. Check out their Etsy store as well as Song and Story.

 

But in this podcast we really focus on this new transition in the life of he and his family (and I will have him back on another time to talk about all these creative endeavors). So in this podcast episode you will learn how Aubrey and his family

  • simplified their life (finances, food, etc.)
  • emphasized the importance of family togetherness
  • created margin for exploration

I love these three themes that we discuss in the podcast. I really think they are essential elements for families wanting to create change in their lives and head into a new transition. You may not have a family at this point in your life, but we can all learn how to simplify our lives and create more margin for exploration.

Please listen and subscribe to my podcast in the following places, and then leave a comment letting me know what you liked about the show, or what guest you would like to hear from. Thank you so much for your support.

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Resources Discussed in the Show Aubrey's Website Aubrey's Twitter Aubrey's Instagram Song and Story Millworks on Instagram Song and Story Etsy Store Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg Mckeown Financial Peace University Vintage Remedies
Jun 2, 2015

I have struggled with anxiety most of my life. The story of anxiety in my life begins probably somewhere between 1981 and 1986. Those were the years my mother battled breast cancer, eventually dying in 1986 when I was 11 years old. As best as I can remember, the onset of anxiety for me began two weeks after her death when I returned to school and was no longer capable of reading out loud in class...only stuttering. That was the day that I began to live in fear as anxiety gripped my life, but more than likely it had already begun it's work in those previous years with the ups and downs of my mom's struggle with breast cancer.

My anxiety has its roots in those early experiences, and like me, you probably have recollections of when anxiety began in your life. Often it can begin in childhood, especially if we have a parent who is highly anxious, or we encounter some experience to provoke anxiety. Whatever your story, anxiety may be a part of yours. Most of the research I come across these days is that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States and about 18% of the U.S. population, 18 and over, suffers from some type of anxiety disorder. And more than likely the numbers are much higher than this, as that 18% probably only represents those who have gotten help.

But what I have discovered in my own journey with anxiety is that anxiety has actually become the greatest opportunity for growth for me. Rather than view it as an enemy trying to crush me, I have come to see it as a faithful friend who informs me of what is going on in the deepest recesses of my heart, soul and mind. Anxiety cues me in to when things have gone wrong and need to be corrected; anxiety often leads me to face my fears and take risks; and it often informs me of what should be of ultimate concerns in my life. In my book The Anxious Christian I explore this idea, and how God led me to see that anxiety was something he used to help me grow, to keep me moving forward and taking risks, rather than settle for a life of comfort or numbed out from what I was feeling.

In this episode:

  • I share my story of anxiety and where it began for me.
  • I explore the idea that anxiety can be used as a catalyst for growth in your life.
  • I help you think through your own story of anxiety.
  • I talk about how you can listen to your own anxiety, and how that can lead you.
Please listen and subscribe to my podcast in the following places, and then leave a comment letting me know what you liked about the show, or what guest you would like to hear from. Thank you so much for your support.

iTunes

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Player FM

Libsyn

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