Gratitude, Podcasting, Best Health

I’m not a religious person, but I am spiritual.  I’m at one in my relationship with a higher power, God, if you will, when I recognize and feel gratitude. Gratitude for living at peak capacity, for my loving family and friends, for an engaged health team, for the Forward Link community, for music, and for clean air and water.

On this first anniversary of my podcasting journey, with 52 episodes and 3,000 downloads under my belt, thanks for your continuing support.  I’m grateful for you and all you do. Happy Thanksgiving! Best health, you and yours!

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Episode Notes

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Find FULL TRANSCRIPT at the end of the other show notes or download the printable transcript here

Contents with Time-Stamped Headings

to listen where you want to listen or read where you want to read (heading. time on podcast xx:xx. page # on the transcript)

Adapt-ability, not dis-ability 00:55. 1

Transition 02:33. 1

From blogging to podcasting 04:03. 2

Endorphins rule! 05:48. 2

Spiritual and mental health 07:17. 2

Gratitude 09:29  3

 

Please comments and ask questions

Credits

Music by permission from Joey van Leeuwen, New Orleans Drummer, Composer

Photo by Danny van Leeuwen

Sponsored by Abridge

Thanks to these fine podcasters who inspired me for this episode: Alice Merry, Amanda Blodgett, Ame Sanders, Dawn Powell,  Curtis Cates,  David Nebinski, Jane Beddall, Heidi Frei, Jane Beddall, Karena de Souza, Maria Xenidu, Matt Neil, Reinier van Eijik, Rien MacDonald,  Steve Heatherington, Suzy Jones, Tania Marien

Links

Podcast Fellowship.

abridge.com

Akimbo Forward Link

Related podcasts

Gratitude

Receiving with Reckless Abandon

About the Show

Welcome to Health Hats, learning on the journey toward best health. I am Danny van Leeuwen, a two-legged, old, cisgender, white man with privilege, living in a food oasis, who can afford many hats and knows a little about a lot of healthcare and a lot about very little. Most people wear hats one at a time, but I wear them all at once. I’m the Rosetta Stone of Healthcare. We will listen and learn about what it takes to adjust to life’s realities in the awesome circus of healthcare. Let’s make some sense of all this.

To subscribe go to https://www.health-hats.com/

Creative Commons Licensing

The material found on this website created by me is Open Source and licensed under Creative Commons Attribution. Anyone may use the material (written, audio, or video) freely at no charge. Please cite the source as: ‘From Danny van Leeuwen, Health Hats. (including the link to my website). I welcome edits and improvements. Please let me know. danny@health-hats.com. The material on this site created by others is theirs and use follows their guidelines.

The Show

Adapt-ability, not dis-ability

In 2009 Dr. Rip Kinkle (no kidding, his real name) diagnosed me with Multiple Sclerosis. ‘You’ve had MS for at least 25 years. You’re a master adapter, but your symptoms broke through your adaptions. It’s time to treat.’ Six months before he died, my son, Mike, told me that we shared a superpower: accepting what is and moving on. I’m grateful for my superpowers: accept what is and adapt–ability. Adapt-ability rather than dis-ability. Nice.

In 2015 I ended my career as an employee or a boss (some call it retirement). I expected that I’d miss leading, following, and being inspired by a team doing meaningful work together. And miss the connection, the fun, the energy. I shifted from full-time employment due to increasing stress and deteriorating health. Finally, I listened to my own advice: manage manageable stress. (Alright, that’s a good story. The truth? I listened to my wife’s advice with a push out from my employer.) Still, I owned the stress-to-health connection. Time to move on. Accept what is. Adapt-ability. Plus, unemployment benefits. Gratitude.

Transition

I cushioned my transition into retirement with blogging, Wellesley Partners, consulting, teaching, pro bono work, music while decompressing and healing. I already had a four-year, weekly habit of publishing my blog, Health Hats. Wellesley Partners, a small consulting and executive coaching shop, welcomed me back to their nurturing fold for the second time. I used a cube at Wellesley Partners weekly while I set up the business, Health Hats, and a home office. Tim Sullivan and Peter Tetrault coached me through the year-long transition period. Gratitude.

I’m grateful for ABRIDGE. Push the big pink button and record the conversation with your healthcare professional. Read the transcript or listen to clips when you get home. Abridge was created by patients, doctors, and caregivers. Check out the app at abridge.com or download it on the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. Record your health care conversations. Let me know how it went!” 

From blogging to podcasting

A year ago, in one of his daily posts, Seth Godin plugged the second Podcast Fellowship.  I signed up. I took this unexpected fork in the road and became a podcaster – just like that.  Happenstance, without foreshadowing or forethought. No magic in learning to podcast, rather hard work, persistence, with plenty of support. I watched and listened to 35 daily lessons and created and connected with a community of 300+ international eager, nervous, collaborative fellow learners. Spoiler alert:  Podcasting led to outsized health benefits. Gratitude.

Dear readers and listeners, you know that I’m full of myself. I can’t help it. I’m a content machine. Blogging weekly for six years offered me the opportunity to exercise discipline, message, and editing muscles. But blogging is one way – me, out. How long could I sustain? Podcasting, as a blog enhancement, entails much more listening – listening to, interviewing, exploring with fascinating people in my life and networks, eager to tell their stories. Creating and producing a podcast offers me learning and leading, communication and motivation, new and deepening personal and virtual relationships, skills building, and artistic expression. OMG. Gratitude.

Endorphins rule!

For me, podcasting leads to outsized health benefits. How can I say that? You know my mantra: Best health is living at peak capacity built on genetics, conditions, circumstances, and physical environment. Best health draws on physical, mental, and spiritual essentials — spiritual trumps mental and physical any day. As you know, I have multiple sclerosis. At its core, MS is a misfunctioning central nervous system gravitating inexorably to fatigue and exhaustion. Our basic challenge: use it, so you don’t lose it – it being movement and brain pathways. For me, that’s walking at least 3500 steps a day and playing music 5-6 hours a week. I hypothesize that activity and movement trigger endorphins. Endorphins generate energy. The endorphin-generated energy counteracts the fatigue of MS.

Mentally, learning new skills, honing a craft, telling a story, producing the podcast with music, sound, and article grade transcripts exercise the grey cells. Podcasting provides a second-level trigger of endorphins. Again, endorphins create energy. Gratitude.

Spiritual and mental health

The Podcasting Fellowship I mentioned earlier introduced me to the Akimbo Forward Link community. Akimbo is the Seth Godin community of workshops about bending the culture, speaking up, and being heard. Forward Link is a hub for the more than 10,000 Akimbo alumni from 74 countries. This community offers me a sandbox for personal, mission-driven growth, a 24-hour help desk and sounding board for business and technical problem-solving, and endless opportunities for collaboration. The community welcomes and honors my leadership and participation. Few of the alumni appear to work in traditional healthcare, which adds to its perfection for me. Living in the traditional healthcare bubble can constrict my brain (that and MS) and limit my concept of the possible. In fact, as a life-long student of communities, organizations, leadership, and change, the Akimbo Forward Link community offers an unusual model of operating at peak performance.  Sound familiar? Within the Forward Link community, I host a bi-weekly call of podcasters critiquing each other’s work. We are from Wales, Germany, Australia, Canada, Peru, and the US. Our podcasts are about environmental education; diversity, inclusion, and equity; fine art; feminist microfinance; best health; learning, and more. I meet with a group of New England Forward Link participants in-person monthly in Boston. I virtually test techniques, ideas, stories, and presentations within the community and respond to others’ inspiring work almost every day.  You can see how this connection has bolstered my spiritual and mental health. Gratitude.

Gratitude

I’m not a religious person, but I am spiritual.  I’m at one in my relationship with a higher power, God, if you will, when I recognize and feel gratitude. Gratitude for living at peak capacity, for my loving family and friends, for an engaged health team, for the Forward Link community, for music, and for clean air and water.

On this first anniversary of my podcasting journey, with 52 episodes and 3,000 downloads under my belt, thanks for your continuing support.  I’m grateful for you and all you do. Happy Thanksgiving! Best health, you and yours!

 

Danny van Leeuwen

Danny van Leeuwen

Patient/Caregiver activist empowering people as they travel toward best health

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