Where Is Your Kingdom? (WIYK?) Part 1 – She Knows the Boundaries of her Land – Transcript

WIYK? She Knows the Boundaries of her Land

I'm Brittany and I'm Sarah and this is the empowered Princess podcast. A weekly podcast where we’re reimagining what it means to be a Princess today.

{Brittany} We are back into the empowered princess podcast, to settle after an extended break for Christmas, New Years and it seems to be a never-ending cycle of flu and cold seasons.

{Sarah} Yes, may it stop. Please stop, I’ve had enough. {Brittany} What cycle are you on now? {Sarah} I had a cycle in November and now I'm on my late January early February cycles.

Just two this year, or this season. {Brittany} So, if you hear a little bit of stuffiness from Sarah, shame, she's working through her second cycle.

Hoping all of you have maintained health throughout the flu season, I caught it. I caught it really badly in Colorado when I was home for Christmas, but now recovered and loving life in the unseasonably warm Orlando February actually.

{Sarah} I miss it, it's so nice.

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The camping in February in Orlando's just perfect. {Brittany} It is perfect. Yeah, we went camping a couple of weeks ago which was quite the adventure actually. We should do a camping podcast. I don't know how we would tie that back to Empowered Princess, but we can get there. {Sarah} I think we can, adding it to the list. {Brittany} Adding it to the list.

This particular podcast is something that I have been so excited to record. We started talking about this idea actually back in November. When we first started our pre-launch buzz and interaction on social media and really, it's an area that I'm not sure I've heard spoken about a lot currently

Where is your Kingdom?

I feel like there may be some nuances here and there that people are talking about it. But I think it's quite a unique take on the situation, so the title of this podcast is: Where is your Kingdom? And we ended our first podcast with Sarah's favorite author and her quote from Ursula K. Le Guin. “We are volcanoes.

When we women offer our experience as our truth, as human truth, all the maps change. There are new mountains”. So, I kind of wanted to talk about that in light of where are we now individually as women and then collectively as women, what's our context?

{Sarah} Yeah, I think right now we're at a unique place in history. There's a lot of things that have brought that about. I would say for as women, but also just as

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people. There's so much development and change that has happened and sometimes it feels overwhelming, like we don't know what our place should be, and kind of where tribe is and what that looks like. So, for me, it often helps to look at the history and how did we get to where we are, to help us know where we are.

Whiplash from shifting expectations.

So, Brittany, I know that you've looked into this a little bit and kind of have some points here of how did we get to where we are? {Brittany} Yeah, absolutely. I wanted to affirm that feeling of being whiplashed, right? I feel quite often this sensation of whiplash with how much change has happened and what that means as far as shifting expectations on me personally as an Empowered Princess, as a woman with a story and Kingdom of my own.

And then also collectively as women, specifically within our context. So, I find it really fascinating that if you line up- I can actually- as a note of vulnerable openness, I kind of get a little bit down on myself when I do feel that whiplash, 'cause I think to myself why can't-

We're in the most wonderful time, I view in my opinion, to be a woman on the planet, as far as what options we have and what opportunities we have. And so, then I think to myself: why the struggle? Why is this still a problem? You know, shouldn't we just now be able to walk into our slated destinies and own life?

With a cloak of sparkle- like a sparkly- What am I thinking here? You know, like Elsa when she comes out of her ice Palace all sassy and my blue beautiful gown in my gossamer cape. {Sarah} We've taken the braid’s out of our hair, our hair’s flowing in the wind. {Brittany} Correct.

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Oppressive structures: not ancient history

Even our hair has been unplaited and unbridled. So, here we are. Why is this? Why is there actually more fear on this side? Why is there actually more uncertainty on this side? And then I think about: Well, if you line up in history the hundreds of thousands of years from, at least what we know right now of the earliest human remains, to now, you're looking at hundreds of thousands of years of human subjugation across tribes and nations, and always with women and children at the bottom.

And so, if we stack that up, even against- it's 2020. Which means that women got the right to vote about 100 years ago, you know? So even if you stack that up against 100 years. It is a bullet, is a blink. It's a blink of history in which there haven't been these oppressive structures that dictated what our roles were, who we were, what we were allowed to do, where we were allowed to go, and largely what we were allowed to think and believe.

And I think about 100 years ago my Grandma, my dad's mom, if she was still living, she would have been 100 years old last year. So, she was born into a nation -into the United States- without the right to vote. And that's my Grandma. That's not ancient history. That somebody I knew and loved for many, many years of my life. So, it's so recent, it's so quick, it's so fast, right?

And we can look at the developments throughout the last 100 years, which I think are really helpful, but I think that mostly what's helpful to look at is the disparity that still continues today. Between, not necessarily between men and women, but the disparity

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between what the opportunities are, what our opportunities are and then what we're actually manifesting in our own minds what that specifically looks like.

Technology and ease of information

So, and I think that the reason why it's gone so much faster in the last 100 years. Obviously technology, right? We don't have to go through- I think of like Newsies with Pulitzer. Pulitzer has- they think they got us, do they got us? No!

We don't have to go through publishers to get news out there, we just need an iPhone and an Internet connection actually, with a cat wearing a birthday hat holding the sign of whatever our cause is, right?

{Sarah} Yeah, I've got three. Only two of them will willingly wear hats, so we've got a couple of options for you. {Brittany} Don't they wear Wendy's, your cats? {Sarah} I mean sometimes. {Brittany} OK. 'cause I feel like we're going to definitely have Empowered Princess onesies for like the itty-bitty Empowered Princesses.

{Sarah} The mostly wear Christmas sweaters. That their- That's the best thing we put them in, and they have some little hats sometimes. Being real vulnerable here, cats and clothes, it's something I've done and will continue to do.

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{Brittany} There's no shame. I celebrate that. I do not put our cats in onesies or well, oh, that's not true. I did order a lion’s mane one year for Halloween. {Sarah} It was so cute. {Brittany} Yeah and I can basically sustain both of them wearing it long enough for me to take one photo for Instagram. I do it for the ‘gram, and then it's off, and then it goes back into the cupboard for another year.

Yeah, but is it- So, just this idea of the democratization of the playing field through technological advances and speeding up the development and distribution of ideas, right? We've been able to achieve so much.

{Sarah} You think about the access to information that we have. When I was a kid, when I was going to write a report I had to go and find sources in books, but I was young, and look up the information. And with a physical copy, what you had access to is what you can physically locate in the world around you.

Yeah, like the library. {Brittany} Encyclopedia Britannica. {Sarah} Yeah, So, that's all been blown apart. Now it's like: What is reliable information? And not to be overcome by too much stuff because the opportunity is everywhere.

{Brittany} Absolutely. And I think about, I've judged a couple of high school competitive business events, like statewide events here in Florida, the last couple of years as a volunteer, and I think about the fact that I was judging these student groups. Some were individuals and some were groups.

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And they were born with access to everything with no trip to the library to pick up a physical book or to interview somebody in a specific job that would give them that information and so I'm sitting here and I'm watching them and by all standard logic, these should be the most confident, Empowered girls/young women that the world has ever seen. And actually, by contrast, I was shocked at the level of -anxiety is not the right word- but the level of discomfort with themselves.

The lack of confidence, the lack of eye contact, the lack of a sense of self when they were presenting or, especially one on one I watched this girl, you know I had to break protocol and lean across and ask if she was OK, because she was having a full blown panic attack sitting across the table from me. And I thought, Oh my gosh.

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This is not that- like this is a very informal event, but she was being evaluated. There were not enough skills, there was not enough personal definition there for her to be able to get through a five-minute presentation. And that was not uncommon.

So, I was just shocked at what seems to be this identity crisis that we're having now that we've been thrown out into this new place where it's wide open spaces, all of our choices are before us. And I think, why? Why all the angst? Why all this self-consciousness? And why this identity crisis?

Cognitive dissonance

And I spoke to this little bit earlier, but I tend to view it in terms of what they call cognitive dissonance, where we have a certain reality and yet we're experiencing a very different reality, or we’re told we have a certain reality. And we are experiencing a very different reality.

OK, so. Sarah, I think he mentioned this earlier, but I just can't escape this feeling that all of a sudden, we're now supposed to be Marie Kondo and Sheryl Sandberg and Beyoncé all at the same time.

{Sarah} Yes, while also meeting all the traditional ideals of a woman as well. So, for me, I just struggle with: How do you do and be all of these things? I mean; I've had a full-time career since I graduated from college and I've loved it. I've been so challenged. I've grown a lot; I've got to do a lot of things and my husband also has had a full-time career and he is so supportive, so I'm very blessed in that reality.

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He probably would rather stay home and have me work, and him do you all the housework, house related, living things that you just need. {Brittany} He's such a good cook. {Sarah} He's such a good cook, he is. And he's naturally a good caregiver, so we both have those interests and those abilities, but it kind of just feels like we have all these options and there's the support within our culture that, as a woman you can do all these things. We’re breaking the glass ceiling; We're doing all these different things.

The appearance of opportunity in a lot of areas is that the doors are wide open, come on in, but it almost feels like you can't win necessarily. Once you get there; if you're somebody who has a full-time career, it's: Why are you doing that and not having kids? If you have kids and you stay home, then it's: You should be bringing in a dual income.

There isn't really a safe place for what we as women are supposed to be doing, the ‘supposed to’ has kind of gone out the window. Pretty quickly. And I'm not complaining about that at all. It's more, what framework do you look at with that paradigm shift?

How do you evaluate for yourself what it is that you're passion about, that you're supposed to do, and that you find fulfillment in and capitalize on that and figure out- and not have to do everything?

And focus on the things that you're meant to focus on. {Brittany} I think that's the most important thing, is that we do have this narrative now of you can do whatever you want and you can be whatever you want, but there is not the counterpart to that which is that you can be whatever you want, but you can't be everything. So, you need to edit that down. It is actually irresponsible

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to not take this opportunity to, like you said, define for yourself your passions and your goals and the things that you feel like you're put on this planet to do without also taking off the pressure of continuing to do the things that you were doing in the old paradigm.

Cultural shift back to tribes

And I was going to talk about that framework, right? Because largely with Millennials and Gen-z’ers now and what not, because that framework has been blown up because previously our framework was dictated to us by the country we lived in or the community that we lived in or religious structures like our churches and our places of work.

Now that we've- now that technology has allowed us to largely eradicate most of the ways that those structures informed our identity. We've actually kind of gone back to this Tribal- Many people have written about this -Seth Godin and even Brené Brown and in a couple of other popular pop psychologists and things like that- talk about this cultural shift back to tribes.

And what's funny is that we're not trained- I can see you smile, why are you smiling? {Sarah} I'm smiling. I feel like I've had this con- it's not the same conversation, but I've had a similar conversation multiple times. In that I’ve moved and lived a lot of places over the last 10 years where I didn't have family or where I had to restart.

And locating your tribe and your friends as an adult is so difficult. Finding that aspect of belonging and community and figuring out what that is when you move to different places especially, it's hard.

{Brittany} It is hard. As an Air Force brat, I feel like it's very hard. You know, well anyway.

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{Sarah} We complicate things with our mobility in this world too. Which is that we're also away from like our home bases, that that's no longer a strong of a tie. And we move wherever for the opportunities that present themselves.

{Brittany} And we're now responsible for defining 100% of the structures that give our lives meaning and- because that's not possible, because it's not possible. Because we are social creatures.

Because in Brené Brown words “we are hardwired for connection”. We're constantly searching for that- I don't know if you just heard that, but my husband teaches guitar lessons and so he just plugged in his amp next door. That was very loud. Anyway. {Sarah} Sounded rockin’ Brittany. {Brittany} It's very rockin’, and maybe we will get one of his students to come in, record our intro or outro.

Anyway, I apologize for that. Again, with this return in- it was kind of an unstated return. Very few people were aware of it, and very few people today are actually aware of it. Because what I think we're witnessing, and one of the things that you mentioned earlier, and something that I certainly feel on a regular basis, being a strongly opinionated, extroverted, very vocal woman.

Previously I felt this rub with those frameworks and structures, right? Like the “Old World’s frameworks and structures and boardrooms”, and things like that. But now I'm feeling that rub when I make a choice that is different to a tribe, like a specific tribe of women. I find that the women on women hatred is particularly vitriolic.

It's particularly preachy. But it's not just women. Women on women. There are different tribes that are kind of interacting with each other, but when they rub against each other, even if it's kind of cosmetic and it's not actually on a principle level different, there's

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a whole lot of fear that is driving those interactions and that comes out in a lot of hateful words and quite frankly bullying, especially on social media. {Sarah} Well, that's one of the reasons why I don't do a lot on social media. Because that, I don't know, that methodology of interaction. It can be so heated, with people who would not say that to your face so easily.

{Brittany} Oh sure, sure. {Sarah} And anyway, it's a struggle for me, being someone who's introverted and not as- putting myself out there to the world and how to still engage through social media and be honest and open about things but not offensive or igniting of, I don't know, un-healthy discussion?

Proactively defining our boundaries

{Brittany} And I feel like that identity crisis is actually making what you just said very difficult to do, right? Because if the only thing that provides my identity is my tribal belonging to this group or that group; If I interact with somebody who is threatening that tribe’s prescribed values, it's now we're like back to caveman kind of survival techniques where it's like eliminate the threat.

It's a very intense interaction versus what I view as a very healthy constructive dialogue, for instance, or respectful dialog, I think. {Sarah} That's true. {Brittany} And I think- I want to know- it always reminds me of this line from Hamilton the musical where George Washington tells Hamilton: Winning was easy young man, but governing's harder.

So, this hard-fought war that was won and now there's this new nation and they're trying to- and they're doing exactly the same thing. They're transitioning

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their identity from the freedom fighters essentially to now, ‘Oh, OK, anything is allowed. So, what do we want to create?’ And I feel like we're in that moment. ‘OK, now anything is allowed now. Now what do we want to create?’ And this is actually where it's really really hard because so many of us are actually still in the fight posture. Give us our rights and it's like now we have them- I'm not comprehensively and certainly not universally- let's get real, and even within our culture, like sex slavery and wage gaps and things like that are slowly changing.

{Sarah} I wouldn’t say we’ve fully arrived. Like everything is Golden. {Brittany} Correct, we haven't fully arrived. {Sarah} Nobody’s saying that here. {Brittany} Exactly. Please, please hear us, and we support all of the podcasts and movements and people and book writers, and legislators and politicians and charities and whatever that are actually engaging in that work.

‘Cause that is important work that is not assumed and certainly regresses if we don't actively attend to it every day. But I do find that culturally if we're just looking at- if we're just looking at ourselves and our fellow woman and girl, we are having an identity crisis and I feel like that's because we're not proactively defining our boundaries, our values, our individual in our Empowered Princess context.

Our individual kingdoms. Where are our kingdoms? What is it and what are the rules there? But what gets in? Who and what gets in? What does that look like? And I think that without- {Sarah} And who are we created to be? What defines us as well is so important.

That kind of like self-reflection and self-discovery, and processing through those things that are hard and those things

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that are bright and shiny. {Brittany} Yeah, absolutely, absolutely. And it was Aristotle that said that the soul never thinks without a picture; in the empowered Princess context, we since Day One have been talking about the fact that the soul never dreams without a picture.

And so, what is that picture? And we believe that that should be a proactive definition. That should be a proactive metaphor. That should be a proactive image in our minds of what we want our futures to look like. What we want our contribution to look like. What we want our kingdoms to look like.

Kintsugi: Brokenness is part of the design

And we’ll do a full podcast on Kintsugi, which is the Japanese tradition and practice of repairing broken pottery. And they use this gold dusted lacquer to piece all the broken pieces back together so that the lines of brokenness are not hidden away with a clear lacquer but are beautifully highlighted.

{Sarah} Yeah, I'm so excited Brittany. When you mentioned this idea and I was like ‘I don't know if I know what that is?’, but I am interested to learn more and then you show me a picture of it and I'm ‘yes, I love this’. I love this idea of strength and beauty from those broken places and that brokenness is actually part of the design.

It's utilized within the way that the design is done and it’s not idden, it's highlighted. {Brittany} And it becomes a part of the new composition. {Sarah} Yeah, it's highlighted with a precious metal. Something that's expensive and takes work to utilize. Yeah, I just think that's really cool and I just think looking at that, the way that repair is done and then the way that it is composed to be beautiful and highlight that

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brokenness is so important as a metaphor and a picture for what we're talking about. {Brittany} Absolutely, absolutely. And the- oh sorry, go ahead. {Sarah} I was going to say, and it lines up with Empowered Princess, and what we're talking about with that metaphor.

{Brittany} It is Empowered Princess because why would we start? Why do we start a company? Would we start an art movement? Why would we start an art Empowered movement around a metaphor that's working, right?

So, if the Princess metaphor was completely working as it has historically been, then it wouldn't make any sense. But we started it because there are pieces of that that don't fit anymore. There are pieces of that that are old framework, and so what we're doing is, we’re not throwing it away.

We're picking up the pieces, and we're putting it back together with that gold dusted lacquer to parallel what we're doing as women now in this new space where we are literally responsible for defining all aspects of our identity.

So yeah, so we've got so exciting, I can't wait for that podcast, it’s going to be amazing. Oh my gosh. I was thinking of Iliza Shlesinger’s last show on CNN. Amazing. {Sarah} Yeah, I was thinking of- my poor slightly sick brain is thinking of Mrs. Potts and chip from Beauty and the Beast.

And how chip has the chip but he's the special, I don't know, he's this great character and his whole name is pointing out the fact that he has a broken piece. {Brittany} He is Kintsugi. Chip is the Kintsugi of the pottery. Human Again. I think of the Broadway song ‘human again’. I think they use that in the 2nd Beauty and the Beast?

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I'm not sure. But it's a beautiful song.

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The Empowered Princess Code!

OK so, talking about this definition process; this whole process of interacting now with this idea of defining who we are. We came up with three essential guidelines -I think of Pirates the Caribbean here: “They’re more like guidelines”. {Sarah} Yeah, I like Captain Barbosa here. {Brittany} I mean, I'm not assigning you. Yeah, The Empowered Princess Code.

There we go. They’re more like guidelines. {Sarah} So, we're talking within the metaphor of Empowered Princess and ‘what is your Kingdom?’ here when we're talking about these guidelines. So, we're creating a word picture related to that.

Rule 1: She knows the boundaries of her land

{Brittany} Yep exactly, and so the first guideline in our code is that she knows the boundaries of her land. She knows where her Kingdom starts and stops, and she knows who and what gets to come in. So, when I think about like knowing the boundaries of her land, I actually have personal experience of trying to figure out the boundaries of the land and the lay of the land.

Yeah, my husband and I were do-it-yourself-ers and he's an engineer and is able to do a lot more than your average person, so we were looking at what the slope was of this land that we were trying to buy and build a house on.

So, I'm standing there with a string and he's got a sole surveyors kit that he bought on Craig's list so that we can survey our own land and figure out all the different points of where the slope goes up and where we would put everything.

And I became very familiar with the boundary of that land from corner to corner. I've walked every single inch of it, and we mapped it out and just created

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this knowledge of the surface of it and the slope of it and all of its boundaries. So, when I think about this, it's important to know that. You need to take the time to figure that out. {Brittany} Practically what did that allow you guys to do with your property, like actually build a foundation and-

{Sarah} So, with that it actually allowed us to know not to buy that property because there wasn't room to put in a septic system with the grading of it. It was going up a mountain slope. So, we ended up buying the house next door that already was built and it worked out beautifully, but if we hadn't surveyed that land and figured all that out, we would have ended up being out a ton of money on a lot that was almost unbuildable.

{Brittany} Yeah. That's amazing, and I think too that the- {Sarah} We figured out its limitations through doing that. {Brittany} See yes, and I think that is what we were talking about earlier. Our problem now is not- again not universally, this is not universal, and we're not saying that, but largely in the Western First World our problem is not with opportunity, our problem is with defining limits and deciding what those limits are, either by natural law or by us intentionally drawing some boundaries around our Kingdoms.

So, I think about Gerard Manley Hopkins was a British poet and Jesuit priest actually, and he said this back in 18 something, really a long time ago, but it sounds like a Brené Brown quote, right? It says: Your personal boundaries protect the inner core of your identity in your right to choices. And I think that it's so funny 'cause we talk about the fact that deliberation is in our right to choices, but actually we can't have those choices and we can't make those choices, and we certainly can't leave them with integrity,

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if we don't have personal boundaries around them. {Sarah} Yep, that's true. Yeah, you very quickly can move into that overwhelmed or frustrated area when you've overreached and you don't realize that that's what's happening, and usually until you're there.

{Brittany} Yeah, absolutely. {Sarah} So, you don't realize that you're lacking in margin until the margin’s been fully utilized and beyond. {Brittany} Yeah, no absolutely. {Sarah} So, it takes it takes that productivity, and I think for women there's a song I've been listening to that kind of ties some of this together.

That it's actually called redesigning women and some of the lines- I won't go into all of it, but I identify with a lot of it. Which so some of the lines are: “running the world while you're cleaning up the kitchen. Making bank, shaking hands, driving 80, trying to get home just to feed the baby. How do we do it? How do we do it? Make it up as you go along? You're halfway right, and you're halfway wrong.”

It's that feeling of those traditional things that women do. All these different opportunities for career or other expression and usage of talent and then just trying to balance and figure out what that looks like and feeling like you're kind of having to pioneer that yourself without- and heading into unknown territory.

{Brittany} Sure, and it's not like all of those outside forces and influences, once you get out of and once you step into this new paradigm, are all neutral, so like we were talking about before some of that can actually be quite perilous.

And you know it's so funny, Sarah, I was just thinking to myself, this is Rapunzel's journey when she first gets out of the tower. Because she’s like ‘I want to get out of the tower, and I want to go see these lights’. And then she has the whole

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identity crisis. {Sarah} Can you make some of the sounds she made? She made so many sounds when she's running around the woods, freaking out. {Brittany} I don't even remember. “Best day ever”. And then she goes into the weeping these true- “I'm the most horrible daughter”.

She's like that. That whole moment for me, first of all, it was so validating. I’ve felt that habitually of my life. But that's exactly what we were talking about. And then you think about Flynn Rider coming in, and him with his own agenda, which is to like get her to go back to the tower so that he doesn't have to be responsible for her anymore.

Or he can get out of his agreement, so he's like, ‘oh, we should go to this pub. It's totally normal.’ You know Snuggling Atlas and {Sarah} He's like, let me just close this down so I can get the crown and get out of here. I don't care about your journey right now; I've got my own thing to figure out.

{Brittany} Well, and I think about how many bosses/well-meaning mentor/friend/people in neighboring tribes/people in your own tribe. Once you step out into your own freedom and you're defining those boundaries are in unhealthy ways trying to influence your newfound independence or your newfound boundaries. And a lot of well-meaning people, and then a lot of people who are actually just not that well-meaning-

And actually, I found too, Empowered Princess tip, if somebody specifically reacts poorly to your boundaries, they’re probably the people you need to have the boundaries around. Anyway. {Sarah} Yeah, I would affirm that too. I don't think you're stating any new revelation here. And I think the other thing is having to

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always appear you’re curated, like your social media presence, the way you present yourself, the work that you submit. I think part of this may be because both of us are high achievers, so we have high expectations of ourselves and we push for a lot of different things.

But it can often be a facade that really creates barriers to do things so figuring out where it's appropriate to let that down and kind of set that as a boundary that you don't always have to have a perfect appearance, whatever appearance means in that context.

Celebrate our failures and learn

{Brittany} Yeah, because I think that one of the ways that we try to protect ourselves when we are moving into this new paradigm where there aren't as many concrete frameworks and rules and structures for us to create an identity around or to measure our progress, right?

One of the biggest problems, it's like, oh how am I doing? Well, if I create a following, a tribe, that is affirming what I'm doing, it makes us feel like we're on the right path and so a lot of that curation is actually really destructive to ourselves 'cause it's not fair to ourselves to not allow ourselves to do it poorly for a while or not allow ourselves to try something new that may fail.

And there's a lot of organizations that talk about women not learning how to fail or not being provided context in which they can fail, and that being actually one of the more culturally damaging norms for us. And so, I agree that whole idea of the curated perfection is something that doesn't belong in the Empowered Princess Code? We're real people and we hold space for real people, and we don't get it right and we hold space for our

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friends and neighboring tribes when they don't get it right as well. And one of my favorite things about- This is so funny, it comes from the military background in my family, but they talk about lessons learned and they have- all of the different branches have different ways of talking about this, but it's basically like a postmortem or lessons learned on any type of initiative, and it's not to shame.

The purpose is not to shame. The purpose is to learn, and it goes up the chain and it goes down the chain and it goes side to side. So that's definitely a part of the Empowered Princess code that I love.

Actually, let's actually celebrate our failures, honestly. Let's put it out there and learn from it, and I think we'll find actually that the tribe that we really need will surface when we stop curating our existence.

{Sarah} Yeah, it's like, what did I hear? “The greatest thing to be had in failure is experience”. You would never have had that if you wouldn't have tried. So, I think about that with people who invent things and who tried to- How many iterations of something do you have to go through before you find one that works? If you gave up after the first time, so many things would not exist today.

{Brittany} Exactly. And in this paradigm, it's not just about products and services or achievements. This is about defining that identity for ourselves, defining the boundaries of our Kingdom. Like how many iterations are we going to go through of defining our Kingdom? And that is an iterative process and it should be because we learn.

{Sarah} Because I feel like we're always learning and growing and changing and going through different stages as we get older and honestly, the way that you want your Kingdom when you were 21 is different when you're 31, then when you're 41, than when you're 51. So, it is

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that iterative process for sure. {Brittany} I love that. And I also feel like part of what influences that development and that evolution of understanding and redefining and redefining and redefining our kingdoms is also this idea of evaluating our personal and cultural agreements that we've unknowingly made or that we continue to make.

Re-evaluate agreements

I think about, you were talking about earlier with the song, you have to be running the world while cleaning the kitchen. I had made an agreement that I don't go to bed if there are dishes in the sink, it was one of those things that I had, that agreement. Because one of my girlfriends set it when I was in college and I was like, ‘Yeah’. And I am a high achiever.

So, I just add more and more things to my list of things I have to get done every day. And I disagree. I define that agreement every day and it's quite devastating when you don't go back and reevaluate some of those things that was a long time ago and that was set in a very different context.

And I had less responsibility than and so it's actually quite cruel to not evaluate those agreements on a daily, weekly, monthly, yearly basis. {Sarah} Yep, I think that's true. Yeah, recently I've- So, I live closer to family now, my in laws, and I've had to kind of come to the realization that I actually can't keep my house clean enough on a regular basis to meet the standards of hosting people that I innately have for myself.

But I have people over two, three times a week because I actually live closer to family now. So just last night it was on the spur of the moment two people are going to come over for dinner and my house is a mess and I- you can hear it, I sound like I sound, I'm like ‘you know what? It’s fine, I'm just gonna roll with it’. And

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there was freedom in that of kind of redefining that and of being like, you know what? All I need is welcoming people and having people who want to spend time with you is a gift. You know, obviously, that can be overwhelming but it's not something that I have to achieve some sort of like cleanliness of house to make that happen.

Or to make that continue to happen. It's not about that at all and I can show people love in lots of ways. It doesn't have to be through excellent hosting every time. {Brittany} Right, right. Yeah, and I'm just trying to think of- I was thinking of a similar agreement that I had made that I hadn't realized that I had made, but my husband finished his Masters degree in December and this has been a three-and-a-half-year process for us, you know?

And we paid for it as we went along, and so there was like a lot of financial sacrifices that we made to get that done. And you know we both run businesses and he started a new- He was invited to be performing arts faculty at the school and whatever. So, we just had a lot of stuff going on and I just thought- I just signed the agreement of that hosting thing, because I love to host people.

We live in Orlando, I love taking people to Disney, I like getting them on every ride and seeing every show in one day and making sure they eat all the snacks and they have all the experiences and they have the best. We don't sit second row; we wait for front center so. You know, there's all of these things and I just had never given myself permission to give it a solid three out of ten and that's true for me across the board. If I, at work especially, all of my projects get a ten out of ten. Or for me it’s a zero and I'm like, OK see that agreement?

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that's old and it's no longer serving me. I need to figure out which ones I can give a three and which ones need a ten you know. And that process of evaluating and breaking those agreements that are no longer serving me or my family or my community or my tribes.

That’s also hugely helpful in defining in defining our kingdoms. And I found, I can't remember who this- I listen to so many leadership podcasts they're all melding together. But I think it was Michael Hyatt probably, could have been Seth Godin, I'm not sure.

Anyway, and they were talking about just writing those down. Writing down whenever you have it- whenever you say ‘should’ in your mind. ‘Oh, I should do this, oh, I should do this’. Whenever you hear ‘should’, flag it as a red flag and write it down. And then just start to curate these agreements that you've made in your life. Or you can be more proactive about it and sit down and start to list out agreement that you made.

{Sarah} I like thinking of them as agreements. Because it shows that there's an opt out possibility. And I don't always think about it that way, so I think that's actually a really healthy framework.

{Brittany} Yeah. And so, to go through them in categories too, like work, home, hobbies, friendships, charities, volunteering, church, whatever those are, through them. {Sarah} I'm thinking of buying a robot vacuum and opting out of having to vacuum so much. I might be one of those people.

{Brittany} I think I love outsourcing dishes to robots, so I also like the idea of outsourcing vacuuming to robots. I just don't think it's effective as I need it to be, but see this is where I need to opt out of the ten out of ten agreement with how effective robots aren't vacuuming because, maybe it's OK if it's a five? {Sarah} Yeah, if I can

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get a five that happens every two days and then I bring it up to a ten every two weeks. I could probably live with that.

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{Brittany} 100%. Yep, I love that. {Sarah} So, because the first one was so good and we lost track of time, didn't even look at the clock. I mean, we're just in the zone. We didn't realize how much time was passing and we don't want to rush through two and three. You know when that happens, when somebody takes all this good in-depth time on the first point and then the last two are just like flybys.

We're not going to do that. So, we're going to hold two and three. It's one of those ‘wait till next week, you don't even know, the crazy conclusion to the story’. And who knows, maybe it'll be the next two weeks if two is as good as one. And so, hold the phone, we're going to talk about this more the next time the Empowered Princess Podcast comes your way.

{Brittany} Beautiful, hold please, hold please. Also, I would just like to say that we used the part of the guideline number one to actually change then- {Sarah} Set a boundary?  {Brittany} Set a boundary. We set a boundary for our listeners, for ourselves, and we also did a mainstream lesson learned that this is too long, and we packed too much content.

We were 10 out of 10 -ing this podcast and we just needed to give it a three out of 10. {Sarah} So we just need to throw in the robot vacuum of podcasts and we’re good to go. {Brittany} We just needed to Roomba our pockets. OK, so awesome. Yeah, we're going to hit guideline two and guideline three of the Empowered Princess Code over the next week or two, depending upon how, like Sarah said, guideline two goes. But thanks for tuning in for where is your Kingdom Part One.

If you love the idea of reimagining with us

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