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EP05: Being a Rock Star Step-Mom, with Maureen Kafkis

June 8, 2022

EPISODE DESCRIPTION

Maureen Kafkis is “The Brain BS Coach” and a step-mom. Listen in on our conversation about having a blended family, having life and perspective changing events, experiencing resentment, and creating boundaries. You can find out more about her at www.thebrainbs.com and be sure to listen to her podcast called The Brain BS Podcast and check out the episode where she “shoots the BS” with ME! Yay!

Resources mentioned in this episode include:
Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth
The Life Coach School and Self-Coaching Scholars aka “Scholars”
What is Human Design?

And no, I’m not an affiliate for the above links… dang it!

Contact Sheila:
https://sheilamorgancoaching.com/contact/

Free Resource to Love Yourself More:
https://sheilamorgancoaching.com/freebie/

TRANSCRIPT

Sheila: Okay. We’re already having a great conversation and I’m super excited to introduce my friend and fellow coach, Maureen Kafkis. Maureen, I’d love for you to introduce yourself.  

Maureen: Well, thanks for having me or Sheila and we are already having fun on this and last behind the scene. Um, so I call myself the Brain BS coach and my primary mission in life is to get people, to make their emotional, mental health, their number one priority, and figuring out how to take responsibility to get it because it’s going to be different for all of us. And my, my little catch phrase that I used with coaching is that I inspire people to master their brain BS to reduce needless suffering. So, um, yeah, happy to be here and talk on the subject.  

Sheila: I love it. Thank you for being my very first guest and we were talking about this and that I’m a little bit nervous and excited and so happy to have Maureen on here.
Experienced podcaster who’s been giving me some tips and helping me kind of calm down a little bit and yeah, I already feel better. So thank you. Thank you for that. So super 

Maureen: oh experienced. I am as a podcast, I have more experiences than you, so it makes sense.  

Sheila: And I knew you “when”… I knew you, when you started it, when you started your podcast and you’ve been doing it for a year now? 

Maureen: Yeah, all over that. It was, I think it would be a year in January, so yeah,  

Sheila: I love it. And so I love your name, the brain BS coach. I think that’s awesome cause it’s totally all about all, about the brain and the BS that it likes to um, feed us. 

Maureen: Daily basis all day long. 

Sheila: All the time. Yeah. Okay. So, so one of the reasons that I invited Maureen to be on here besides all that we just said is that she’s in a, like a blended family. Her partner is, this is his second marriage?  

Maureen: Yeah. You want me to just tell this story briefly? I’ll recap what it is. 

Okay. So I married my husband and he had been married before. And in that marriage before he adopted his two stepchildren and then they had two more children together. Okay. So the, the ones he adopted the stepchildren are a lot older. And then I came into the picture with no children of my own, and we weren’t able to have children by the time I tried to have home with them. 

It was too late. So that’s our, yes. Our family’s kind of hard to explain sometimes when. You know, if you go in all the details, but like who cares? Right. 

Sheila: Well, yeah, but it’s like interesting dynamics, right? There’s all these different things.  

Maureen: Yeah. Yes, the two older girls definitely changed the dynamics of the family in a significant way. 

Sheila: Okay. So the, how old are the two younger kids?  

Maureen: Um, they’re 27 and 32 now. Okay. Yeah. I have a great relationship with them and I love them. Um, but that was. I always loved them, but now I love them with peace. So that was a big process that I’m sure we’ll get to the bottom of by the time we’re done talking. 

Sheila: Yeah. That was probably one of my questions. Huh. So, well, what do you wish you’d known before you had married into this situation with all the different kids with the ex partner and all that?  

Maureen: Okay. So I had an answer cause I looked at that before. I kind of had an answer, but I just came up with another one too. So sort of like from a joking, but not joking sort of way. 

Um, I wished I knew that kids don’t leave after high school. 

They really don’t and depending on your family situation and the dynamics and where you live, they can be around quite a bit after high school, um, to a degree that I never imagined, but that was sorted the pre Maureen who didn’t do all the work on herself, like really like, oh my God. Um, but then now what I would want to know going into this. 

Is that there is no right way to be a stepmother that I get to, I get to determine that role. And literally nobody else can do that. 

Sheila: I love that you get to decide who you’re going to be as a stepmom.  

Maureen: Yeah. I mean, I was Googling it. I was looking at searching everywhere for the answer, not knowing that the answer was in me. 

Sheila: Um, and how did you find that answer?  

Maureen: I Eckhart Tolle. Um, reading ” A New Earth” by Eckhart.. So we had a little situation here a few years ago. We call it the meltdown in Santa Barbara because I have been sick in Illinois and the girls were home for like two weeks. Then we came out here and they continued with us. And it was going into, I don’t know if it was the crazy amount a time, in my opinion, for adult children to be with her parents. 

And, um, and I was sick and tired and I just, I just lost it in the closet, in our closet and they could hear us and I sounded like Lucifer. I mean, I really lost it. Eckhart Tolle would call it a pain body being triggered. It was just really so, but it felt really horrible. In the moment, but it’s literally the best thing that ever happened to me because I went home. 

Back to Illinois. And I got a therapist and I went to see her a couple times, but she was doing this like, um, internal family systems, kind of therapy, very cerebral, where you have to identify the names and stuff worst thing in the world for a person like me, not good. So she did help me the first two sessions, but then. 

I found a new earth. And as soon as I read the first chapter has like, this is what I need. I don’t need therapy. this is exactly what I need to learn, how to manage my mind and live consciously and just get like, let go of all the BS and all the drama. So I got that book and then that kind of evolved into the life coach school. 

And then I ended up doing all that work. I got coached by Brooke Castillo exactly on this topic. And, um, yeah, it was, that was the beginning of it though, was the meltdown in Santa Barbara. So sometimes those worst things in a blended family can end up being the biggest gift.  

Sheila: I almost feel like it’s the moment when you’re being the most authentic and the most vulnerable. 

And so it opens up, it opens up your heart and your mind and makes room for these things to come out. And then it’s like, okay, here it is out here. We got to do something about it.  

Maureen: But I, I would say that you’re spot on about that, but it wasn’t like, okay, here it is. It’s like, OKAY, HERE IT IS! Was there was nothing, you know,  

Sheila: sweet and butterflies. 

Maureen: It really was, it was probably the worst I’ve ever felt in my life. Um, but then ultimately, like I’ve never felt better in my life since it happened. And I, I made it work for me and not something that happened to me or my family. And it was just the beginning of changing everything. And on the surface, we were always getting. 

Okay. And the girls, it was always good, but it was always me not having any boundaries, letting everybody do whatever, resenting the hell out of not having control in my own home and making it everybody else’s fault. When it was mine, I literally was convinced if all of them would change, everything would be fine. 

I really believed that.  

Sheila: Oh man. Yeah. That’s the sticking point for so many people? I mean, I, I, I told him I’m with you. I totally felt that myself in my family. Like, if you guys could just see what a problem you’re being. Yeah.  

Maureen: Just clean up your act or anything. They’d be fine. And that goes for the ex oh yeah. 

Going with the ex is like also when I first came into my family. I was literally trying to take care of her. Like she was a part of our family almost sometimes to the detriment of my husband, because I was trying to keep her happy. I was being a total people pleaser, and I was going to be that step-mom that had that rock and blended family and everybody loved each other and we all got along and everything was great. 

Um, but then I became exhausted from taking care of everybody, but myself and. Then it all just went to hell in handbasket. That was the end of one big happy  

Sheila: family. So from that going forward, how long before you join the life coach school then?  

Maureen: Um, I got a new earth and I was reading that book and I would say that it was probably, I mean, Less than a less than a year, maybe six months. 

Because then I was talking to our pool contractor in Santa Barbara about a new earth. And he said, have you heard about Brooke Castillo and the life coach school? And I said, no. And he’s like, oh, you should listen to her podcasts. Then I was on a bike ride. Now I’d pulled over to talk to him. Then I got home and I looked up the podcast. 

And then I joined scholars right then. Um, and then I saw that you could get certified as a life coach. And I had just paid for doctorate and occupational therapy. So I was like, oh, I knew instantly I should do. But my mind was like, you just paid for that. You can’t do that. And I went for a drive and I came home and I called my husband and said, okay, I’m sorry, but I have to do this. 

No, none of it was planned. It all happened within like, it all happened in that moment that I decided. Yeah, but in my human design, that’s how, I’m the only, I’m the only energy type that makes decisions in the moment. I’m a splenic authority. So it’s all about my intuition and I, if I try to make decisions ahead of time, which I did my whole entire life, I’m going to have problems, but if I wait and I’m patient and I live in the present moment and make my decisions in a moment, I’m going to be totally fine. 

Everything’s going to work out.  

Sheila: Oh, that’s fascinating. Yeah. So human design is something I know very little about. And, um, 

Maureen: Human Design is just a way for you to get to know yourself better. So it has different energy types, and then it tells you what your authority is in life, your inner authority and your strategy. 

So if you, for, for your listeners, cause this would have been really helpful for me to know. In a blended family. When I went into it, it’s like for me as a projector, I need to be invited to give my opinion. And let me just tell you, I wasn’t waiting for invitations, but then I had a lot of opinions and things to say, but not that I would have approached it all kind of differently. 

Sheila: You’ve figured out your human design, you and when did you do that? Was that before or after the life coach school?  

Maureen: That was, I just, I just figured out my human design after the life go to school would be like in the last year, but Eckhart Tolle really changed everything for me before I did anything else, because it made me aware that it was my problem. 

Sheila: Okay, so let’s go there. Let’s talk about that. So what did you see then when you read that first chapter? 

Maureen:  When I read, um, the, so I’ll tell for anyone who’s listening and thinking about getting that book at our toll, a, um, says in the first chapter, if you pick up this book and it doesn’t make sense to you. 

And you’re not holding onto it. Like, you know, you’re not totally gripped in it and like really invested in it, then just close it and come back to it. And in a couple of years you’re not ready for it is where all the different points. And for me, I was in it, like as soon as I opened the book, And what it taught me is the difference between my higher self and my ego. 

My ego is what I call brain BS. So the, our brain offers us. I go 60,000 thoughts a day, and the majority of them are not true. And all our suffering comes from believing those thoughts that are not true. Right. There’s pain in life that we can’t avoid because things are going to happen. Not affirming comes from adding layers and layers of pain to things because of the way we’re thinking and the judgments that we have. 

So when I learned he also, one of the biggest things is you are not your thoughts. You’re the observer of them. Yup. So it was the first time I could get outside of myself and see myself. Clearer is clear, a word clear so I can see myself more clearly. And it made me so aware of how much suffering I was causing myself. 

Now that doesn’t mean that it got better instantly because it didn’t if it’s simple concept, but it’s much harder to put into practice when your brain has been wired to hold onto these grudges. You know, it had been what, 18 years at that point in this family. So all of these different things that I had to work for, but it just, um, it made me especially resentment. 

Was one of the big things that came up that I didn’t even realize how resemble I was until I looked into it. And I even Googled resentment. Exactly. What does it mean? And it was just this slow, but steady process of learning more and more about it. And just realizing that the only way you can feel resentment is generated in you. 

Sheila: I don’t know. You probably were like me where as a people pleaser, I felt I wasn’t supposed to feel resentment. I was supposed to be loving. I’m supposed to be taking care of people and not resent them. And so I would kind of pretend like I wasn’t feeling resentful and push it down and not feel it. And that would cause me to then kind of explode and blow up and like hit a point where  

Maureen: I was aware of the resentment though. 

I was aware of it, but I didn’t understand why it was there. Ah, I think I really loved these girls. So why do I feel dumb fool about them? It just felt a total disconnect. I didn’t understand how I could love them and then have this intense feeling about them, but it, it wasn’t about them. It was about me and the way I was showing up to my family, it literally had nothing to do with anyone else. 

But. But it just takes a while to unwind all that.  

Sheila: Yeah. So in Bernay brown, his latest book, Atlas of the heart, she talks about different emotions and resentment is one of them. And it’s and you think resentment is about the other person. Doing or not doing something, but it’s not. It’s about how you wish you could do something different or you wish you could stop doing something. 

So it’s totally, it’s totally about you and what you’re doing or not doing and nothing to do with the other person.  

Maureen: So it has nothing to do. No, it’s like, well, it’s like we learn, write your thoughts, trigger feelings, and those lead to actions. And, and honestly, like resentment felt like an action. Wow. It was like, oh, I’m going to resent that. 

I’m going to resent that he did that again. I’m going to resent that, like they went out of the feeling, they didn’t run into the actual line and then it went into the result line. It was just like, man, over here, 

Sheila:  it’s like resentment in every line. I’m going to resent that is the thought.  

Maureen: Exactly. 

Resentment became a big part to the point where. Getting super uncomfortable. I didn’t like who I was and I didn’t feel comfortable in my own skin. There were times where I could have fun in everything would be okay, but it was in my subconscious programming from when I came into the family and all the things that happened over the years that I never spoke up about. 

I never set boundaries about, I never took care of my own needs. I, I was so worried about taking care of all their needs. As if it was like, I was doing it for them, but I was doing it to be liked and to feel like included and just people pleasing. But you can only do that for so long. And then you’re getting a blow and I did a meltdown in Santa Barbara. 

Sheila: Oh, my gosh. That is awesome. I mean, in the moment it’s not, but looking back and being at a place now that you can look back. Yeah,  

Maureen: I can, yeah. I can look at it with humor. Now. There was nothing humorous about it at the time. I was absolutely exhausted and never felt so depleted in my entire life, but that’s also part of being a projector. 

And the type I am. I need time to myself and those girls were with us for like three and a half weeks. It was just like this isn’t going to happen anymore. And it hasn’t since then we did have a recent little longer than anticipated. Um, cause I kind of stepped back a little bit and tried not to be so controlling with my boundaries and, um, and it kind of came back to bite me in the ass. 

So I’ve learned that when you establish your boundary, you have to reinforce it consistently all the time.  

Sheila: Yup. Yup. It’s your boundary. You get to own it and maintain it. It’s like a fence. Like we get to maintain our offenses.  

Maureen: Well, in this case. So it’s, it’s actually, if it’s okay. It’s one of the things that we were talking about, like in some of your questions, but being able to set boundaries is huge. 

Like there’s nothing more when you don’t feel like you have controlling your own home and there’s people coming and going. And you don’t know anything about it? I was just like, well, I’m it, it was almost like, because I was a step-mom I thought I was a step person, especially since I didn’t have children. 

I was just like, who am I to come in here and make my needs a priority? I mean, oh my God, the love a parent has for their child is supposed to be the beginning and end of everything. How am I supposed to get in the way of that?  

Sheila: Yeah. How dare I interfere with any of that?  

Maureen: Yeah. Except there’s a lot of parents and children that don’t love each other. 

So we know it’s not. Biological bond. It’s what you feel about your kid that creates that. I always just like, so that’s sort of like when, when you, uh, so when you were talking like you, we talked to in advance that we were going to talk about the love story, um, that this is all about really, it’s a love, it’s a love story for me. 

It’s about me falling in love with myself and like, literally it’s the most amazing way. Right? I mean, I’m getting, 
I got him, dude. I came into the family, the sort of like an outside. Like I wasn’t good enough. Um, somehow I couldn’t have my own children society, you know, has some, uh, some like, you know, programming going on about that. So it was in, it wasn’t necessarily always conscious. It wasn’t like, I mean, I did a lot of things. 

I sucked, I was successful at a lot of things. I got more degrees. I mean, so it’s not like I’m not doing anything but nothing I was doing. Was giving me the feeling. And then as I started to do this work, I realized that I had all these brain filters from when I was little. And I grew up in a family of 10 kids and I was number nine and I always thought nobody cares. 

What number nine has. And it was almost sort of like feeling a little different than everyone in a little outsider. So go figure, I end up in a family with no children and I’m married in a blended family. So I brought, I created that for myself. Yeah. But definitely I started taking care of myself and making myself a priority. 

Um, there’s no, there is no better feeling. Then doing that end. It is so freaking uncomfortable when you first start doing it, but why don’t you do it? And then the kids like freak out. They freaked out when we first started studying boundaries, they hated it.  

Sheila: Yep. That’s why people don’t set boundaries because they’re afraid of how everybody’s going to react. And so you got to get through that part.  

Maureen: You do. Cause there’s going to be an awkward phase where they’re going to be like, uh, I mean, those girls went on our honeymoon. My thoughts. Yes. My idea. My idea.  

Sheila:Oh my gosh. Of course.  

Maureen: Yes. So you’re going to go through a period where it’s going to be awkward and there’s going to be a lot of, um, they, oh, they were mad at us. 

They were just like all this stuff. And I was just like, I was so really what it comes down to when you’re living consciously the kind of life, that lifestyle I’m promoting, you have to be true to yourself. Yeah. Because the way you treat yourself as a way you treat everybody else, Right. So it was like, even when it was so uncomfortable and so painful, I was so committed. 

To living consciously that I just, I just started doing it anyway. And it was like, it was, yeah, it was super awkward. No, I’m not kidding you. Now they talk to other people about the need for boundaries, conversations, and they’re really appreciate boundaries now. So it’s like, it’s just like everything else. 

It requires a new adjustment and a process.  

Sheila: That’s so good. And so your relationship now with them, what is it?  

Maureen: I love my relationship with them now, because I don’t feel like it has to be like anything. Like, I don’t have this. Like I used to think, well, you would have to talk to them a certain amount of times a week, or you would have to get in touch with them or you would have to. 

And I don’t, I don’t do that unless I feel like it. If I felt like it, I will. Um, if it feels like it’s gone on like too long where, I mean, we come out to California all the time and they live in LA. So we usually see them every couple of months, at least. Um, but I just, I just do what feels good. And I can, I look at myself as, uh, support, extra support, additional support for them. 

And I’ve always kind of been like the one that helps with education. And medical stuff because of my OT background, being an occupational therapist that worked in the hospital for so many years, and then now coaching. So I got them both a little coaching thing, um, for Christmas last year. Oh, wow. Yeah. And they loved it. 

And um, and now my stepdaughter, Olivia is engaged in going to get married to her, um, you know, fiance. And I just talked to them this weekend and told them that I would like to, um, hire a relationship coach. For them and get them a package as they get ready to go into their marriage. So, so that’s kind of like, I’m kind of like, honestly, I’m like, Yeah. Yeah. 

Sheila: I love that. Cause it sounds like you have allowed the space for your relationship with them to develop rather than trying to force it from a place of like controlling and trying to make things happen. That amazing. Yeah. Yes.  

Maureen: And I also came to the conclusion this year when we went to 10 days strategy, which I said seven days, our limit in seven days, it really people really do need to think about, and their parents, you can have the same with each other and definitely, and expect to get along. 

I’m sorry, especially the siblings.  

Sheila: Oh yeah. Yeah. And I lived with my own children grow up when they were grown, so I totally, I totally get it. I, I love my daughters, but yeah.  

Maureen: Yeah. It’s like, we’re not all supposed. That’s why people get married or they go off. And so I didn’t set a boundary with that, but I, I just lost my point of what I was going to say, but it was whatever, if it comes back  

Sheila: to me, I’ll share it. 

Um, you were talking about. Them living with you.  

Maureen: Oh, I know. So also, so another part of it, and this is really good for all your step-mom’s and stepdad’s I’ll burn that don’t want it. They get that. No matter to your best efforts, they’re going to be there anyway. Like my new thing this year is I’m going to go do something. 

Mm, I’m just going to go. I’m going to find my own little adventure. I’m going to go create some space for myself somewhere else for a certain amount of time and let him spend time with his kids alone. They have that quality time together. I don’t have to be there every time they get together. And if it doesn’t feel right, I don’t want to, then I won’t be there. 

You’ll free. Love it judgment free.  

Sheila: Yeah. I, when I would suffer over, when my stepsons came to visit, my husband has two teenagers now that when they come for their weekend, like, oh, we need to go hiking, maybe to do all these things. We need to have all these adventures and all of it, you know, and I had this whole, like, here we go and we go hiking and. 

And I had to, and I tried to be the step-mom with the rules and all of like having a good household and everything. And I did have to find my place where I had household rules. Right? Like how, like, this is how our house is. But then as far as like what they do, how late they stay up, what they eat, where they go, like all of that, that’s on Joe, that’s on him and their mom and they get to decide all of that stuff. 

And I, I get to decide my house. What’s going on here, you know, people coming or going and all of that, like that’s, that’s my house. So there’s a difference there. So that allows me to just be their friend. So now we actually have a really great relationship. We can have conversations and sometimes we’ll all go to a place downtown and play video games together. 

And that’s something that they really enjoy and it’s like, okay. So my relationship with them is really good. When I let go of being controlling and I had to look a certain way and they have to eat healthy when they’re here, you know, all that  

Maureen: expectations, right? What Brooke is you, it calls Emmanuel. So as soon as you decide people be who they are, but then you have to be, you said this earlier, you have to be authentic and you have to be real. 

And when you are, and also I want to add kind of. Yes, because it does make a difference. Cause I was real in that closet and the meltdown that is not the way I want to be on a regular basis. 

Sheila:  I am that doesn’t work in a relationship. It’s like when it does happen, he’s like you gotta clean it up. And so on a regular basis, being authentic from a loving, genuine place. 

Maureen: That was one of my first thoughts for a model that I’ve learned at the life coach school. Was that I show up to my family in a kind and loving way, which means it has to be honest and authentic. And I still use that. And I remind myself of that when I want to kind of weasel out of saying something. I also don’t. 

I also offered a lot of stuff before and now I get permission before I offer it because that’s part of being a projector. That’s helped our relationship a lot too. That’s  

Sheila: good. Yeah. I had to let go of coaching my children. Without permission. And, and now if they call me and they’re upset, I asked them, are you wanting. 

Mom right now, or are you wanting coaching right now? And they ha they have to decide which one they need, because mom’s going to be like, where are they? Let’s go get them. You know, like, like my, my baby. Okay. So, you know, what, what are you thinking about that, you know, going into the coaching mode? So, but I think we do that from a place of, we want to help the people we care about, not so. 

And so our roots. Sure. But then it’s how we show up and how we go about doing these things.  

Maureen: Yeah. But, okay. But you just brought up something that is, um, worth me taking note for myself anyway, is that you put on your coaching hat or your mom hat, but when your hat is about living consciously, it stays the same, no matter what. 

Oh, interesting. Because you would take the ego out of it. So I don’t need to go running after anyone that like the first thing I do is if something happened to one of them in somebody’s wrong, them quote unquote. And I talked to them about how to empower them. Um, and not look at it that way and you drop all the drama and all that. 

And that’s just the way I live my life. Now, whether I’m coaching or not, that’s just who I am. That’s just who I am. So I can’t really turn that part off, but I just keep my mouth shut. If I sense that it’s going to annoy them. I just don’t say anything.  

Sheila: Okay. So, um, so what would you say was the biggest obstacle that you overcame in your marriage?  

Maureen: resentment and blaming everybody else for everything. That was a big one, which is like a lesson we all are going to learn in life, whether you’re in a blended family or not. When people think that they’re in a blended family and they’re experiencing all these emotions that other people don’t have to experience, it is total bullshit humans. 

Yes, we do. It’s just a different container for how we do it, but it’s going to, and same with saying same with the law. Then a mother has for her child, we’re all here creating inherently worthy. There’s no way you’re going to say that God put me on this earth and I don’t get to have as good quality of life because I don’t get to experience that, that relationship. 

I just find my love in a different way, but it’s just as much, it’s still a love. So it doesn’t really, and you could even be in a closet. By yourself and experience all these emotions because we get attached to the story. Yeah. We get in our heads about the story and the ego, and I guess like all going and stuff. 

And we’re not even realizing that that has anything to do with the feelings that are happening in our body. We don’t even pay attention to them. It’s like, no, did you see you? But they did huge drama. And it’s usually us being victims. Yes. I’m being bad to happen to us. It’s like this whole, all of these stories that are not even true and we completely and totally believe them. 

Sheila:  Yeah. And we think that the feeling is being caused by the other person, doing the thing. See the step in between where we’re having the thought about it. Like it just, we  

Maureen: don’t see that. Yeah. Cause like when it comes to setting boundaries right. In a blended family, like when I first started doing it, it was just. 

Okay. It wasn’t like I would be with my one daughter. She was always, I called her a boundary pusher when I got coached by broken she’s, like, don’t call her that. And I don’t even never call her that. Now when she would always like, kinda, it seemed like my buttons got triggered by her still, I would always be anticipating what is she going to do? 

Um, and what is she going to do and how it, but I didn’t even understand that that’s what was going on. It was like, and because it wasn’t what she was doing. That was the problem. It was the way I was showing up to my relationship with her and who I became in particular with her that caused me so much suffering because I was not being honest and authentic or kind in what being  

Sheila: perfectly sad. 

Yeah. That’s such a huge source of pain for us. And we think it’s the other person, but it’s all how we’re  

Maureen: thinking about it. But this is very, very valuable information for anybody listening to your podcast, starting out, because literally it could save you decades of suffering.  

Sheila: Yeah. Like, like what, what things do we wish we had learned? 

Much younger things. They should have taught us in school. Right? Like they didn’t like, they don’t teach us this stuff. They teach us history and math and stuff like that. They don’t teach us how to live and how to live with other people and how emotions happen and what we’re creating with our brain. 

Like literally creating this with our brain. They don’t tell you.  

Maureen: So we ain’t in our high school, my marriage and family life teacher was a priest grappling priest married, like, so, I mean, isn’t that  

Sheila: hilarious to see even know 

Maureen: system could use a little revamping, but that would be another  

Sheila: episode. That’s a whole nother it. Probably a whole season of podcasts. Yeah. I love it. So tell me about your marriage now. Like what do you, what do you do regularly to make sure that your marriage works?  

Maureen: We played pickleball, actually kidding, but I’m not, we are having so much fun with pickleball for many people. 

And we’ve always talked about having something in common to do. And we like, we almost have a court everyday here in Santa Barbara, so we’re playing all the time and we play with friends. We play, we just, two of us were taking lessons. So it’s about finding a balance between having time together, but also, um, working on getting my time to myself. 

I’m getting to go. I’m going to do something for my birthday on my own this year.  

Sheila: So, what is the most powerful thing you do now? As far as your mindset?   

Maureen: I’m embodying my coaching. I’m literally living consciously. Like not just talking about it on the podcast here or doing it when I’m coaching. I literally do it. 

I make a practice of doing it like every day, all day long. It doesn’t mean I’m perfect. And I don’t go out of it because as long as we have brains, we’re going to be imperfect and the ego is going to, you know, catch you and it’s sneaky and you’re going to miss it. But really it’s living consciously because if I do then there’s nothing. 

It’s like, none of it even matters. All this stories in all day. It doesn’t even mean anything. It’s just like, you just like, love one soul to another.  

Sheila: Okay. So for someone who’s not a coach and doesn’t know how to live consciously. So what would be, and since this is your specialty, what would be a brain BS thing that people could look out for that might be tripping them up in their marriage? 

Maureen: Okay. Any time. This is so good. I’m so glad you said this, because this is like happens all the time. Anytime you think that your partner is doing something that’s annoying. You’re doing it too, for sure. Hands down without exception can happen any other way. It’s varying and you’re seeing something in someone else that you can not see in yourself. 

And that’s a gift from the universe.  

Sheila: Maureen. That is a juicy bit. I think that’s a great place for us to end the conversation. And I’m so grateful that you came here. So I want people to be able to hear more about you or learn more about you if they’re interested. So where can people find you?

Maureen: Well, I have a website and it’s www.thebrainbs.com. 

And on that website, I have a podcast to bring BS podcasts. So you can check out all the episodes there. I have a blog I was doing, but I stopped doing it, but there’s still lots of good information there. And I’m also creating I’m in the midst of creating what I call the brain BS forum. So it’s a place that people can write. 

That’s totally free. All I ask for is your email in exchange for it. And you could go there and you could access. There’s going to be so much stuff in there. There’s videos and worksheets and stuff. I’m going to have the, um, brain BS troubleshooting section, where I’m just going to come up with random stuff and there’ll be a blended family stuff in there about different scenarios and how you would deal with them. 
So www the brain bs.com.  

Sheila: Got it. So good. Thank you so much for your time. I love this.  

Maureen: Well, it was a lot of fun. Um, and thank you for having me here. I really enjoyed the conversation too.

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