Dog 🐾parent, Geneviève Pépin is 🚀helping high achievers go from "busy & stressed" to "happy & productive."
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💥Growth Mindset 💥 Creativity 💥 Innovation 💥 Adaptability 💥 Facing uncertainty 💥 Collaboration 💥 Social skills 💥 Communication 💥 Flexibility 💥
What challenges the high achieving You?
How do You go from "busy & stressed" to "happy & productive?”
Join me in conversation with Geneviève Pépin for some inspiring wisdom.
About the Guest
Geneviève, accredited life coach, certified mindset specialist, productivity and leadership development coach and improv facilitator.
About the Show
Podcast Host: Life & Leadership: A Conscious Journey with Dr. Michelle St Jane
A podcast for Global and Re-Emerging Leadership creating community/tribe, a circle of influence, transcendency of compassionate leadership in the world and wider universe. A unique destination for learning about Leadership + Conscious Stewardship + Legacy.
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Intro: You're listening to Life and Leadership: A Conscious Journey. The podcast that shares wisdom and strength. Join your host, Dr. Michelle St Jane's conversation on how to have a positive impact for people, planet, and the wider world. If you want to live a life of intention, to be proactive with your time and bring your vision for the future to life one today at a time, you’re in the right place at the right time. Let's get started.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:00:37] Imagine if you could achieve your goals through joy, not stress, Genevieve is a productivity coach in the business of helping high achievers go:
😞 from busy and stressed,
🤗 to happy and productive.
As a coach in the business of productive play. Genevieve works for professionals. She facilitates fun and impactful virtual experiences.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:01:01] Your people are the most precious asset, wherever in the world, they may be. Managing teams remotely and keeping them engaged and connected is a major challenge. Research shows less connection, less efficiency. That affects your bottom line and your quality of information. That's not the problem.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:01:21] According to Genevieve engagement and the execution is. That's where she comes in. Genevieve is the creator of virtual solutions to reach peak performance. So human connection and remote environments, her virtual solutions are designed according to S.A.F.E. values an acronym:
S is to keep it Simple.
A to keep it Actionable.
F to keep it Fun. Two thumbs up.
And E for Experiential.
Provide a safe place to learn by doing rather than being talked to. Sustainable change requires a sustainable mindset and sustainable solutions from a place of a 💥Growth Mindset 💥 Creativity 💥 Innovation 💥 Adaptability 💥 Facing uncertainty 💥 Collaboration 💥 Social skills 💥 Communication 💥 Flexibility 💥
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:02:08] Let's all learn some meaningful information in a fun way from Geneviève. One thing I've discovered is we both love to laugh and get things done. Tell me what has made you laugh this month?
Geneviève Pépin: [00:02:21] Oh, wow. Great question. Something that never fails to make me laugh is some good improv. I do improv comedy every week with a group here on the island.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:02:32] So, you know, just the spontaneity of making up scenes and characters and see where that goes is often enough to make me burst out, laughing a lot. So, yeah, I would say that my weekly dose of laughter, but daily, I laugh at really insignificant things during the day. You know, like the faces of my 🐾 dogs make me laugh.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:02:55] They're very expressive. So, it makes me laugh. Flirting with my husband. Doing those little things often. Just making mistakes, make me laugh. Also, I laugh at myself a lot. What about you?
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:03:07] I love it. Well, last century, when I was at law school ,to relieve the angst and the marathon, I joined an improv theater group and I loved it.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:03:17] Secret conversation: I think it made be a much better courtroom and boardroom lawyer, because being able to get into a scene or a character, or just have some fun just was the way to go.
I have to tell you over my decades of career, those skills have come through and I would really encourage anyone on their way up into leadership to get on the improv, bandwagons so much fun.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:03:44] Of course, pets are wonderful. I actually have a pet fish. I can manage the pandemic was a fish. I have a Veda. What I discovered on those mornings, when I feel like dancing like nobody's watching, he joins me. His name is H2J. Hope, Hope, Joy. He joins in with his lovely, long ponytails waving.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:04:10] I did not realize that fish had such personality. He's quite sociable and he loves music that’s a bit of funky. I think I'm dancing like nobody's watching, be aware people, the fish notices.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:04:30] Yes. H2J is there to encourage you and be dance partner. That's really cool.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:04:35] I discovered living alone, I needed a pet and just decided I could just enjoy knowing something else was alive. He was a lovely addition. His personality plus often makes my morning. Putting some music on, get the body moving and having a little fun. His ponytails swishing around. It's making use of his whole tank to go wriggle and giggle along with me.
You're in the business of play. What made you pivot into the space Geneviève?
Geneviève Pépin: [00:05:22] What may me pivot into play? You know, you would speak to people that knew me 10, 15 years ago, and they would say that, that I always had an easy laugh, but I find that I was not giving myself a lot of permission. I was really into the business of making things right and making things the right way and not wasting any time and always having, doing something for a purpose.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:05:45] I didn't mind the suffering. I didn't mind going through hard times. I just wanted to achieve things, which is not a bad thing. I'm not saying this is a bad thing. I'm just saying that I didn't have any hobbies and. While I was through my personal development journey. I had some nudges to do something just for the fun of it, to get back into some creative activities, just for the fun of it.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:06:06] I define play as doing something just for the pleasure of the process, right? Not for the outcome. The outcome is a bonus. I started allowing myself to do more of that. Some creative drawing, some calligraphy, and improv. I love improv play because the outcome is not always there, but the process is fun, playing music and so on.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:06:32] I started to do that for myself. I noticed how much it's affected me, and it's triggered me. First of all, it was very triggering for that perfectionist part of me. That part of me that wanted to do things right. Doing things just for the sake of it, or just to do it with taking a risk was so triggering for me.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:06:53] Doing more of that, really triggered a lot of those things so that I could deal with them. Right. I could deal with being vulnerable and not always being in control. I could deal with not necessarily doing something for a specific outcome. Using that I could really enjoy being in the moment and enjoying the joy in the moment.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:07:11] It really helps me be more present, feel more joyful and deal with it. Many other treasures, such as perfectionism and the need for. I started using it in my coaching. I coach high achievers. Those traits are found in high achievers.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:07:30] That's how I included some play in what I do.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:07:33] I love it. I must confess that when I'm in meetings, I tend to have colorful pens. I am creative and tend to kind of write around the edges and circle the page. Change the font.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:07:50] It's really hard to read my notes because they're kind of like walking a maze, right? That's what helped me cope with burning out and with toxic workplaces. Adrenaline can be an addiction along with anxiety and stress. You cite the Anxiety and Depression Association of America stating 40% of professionals are under a persistent haze of stress and excessive anxiety in their work life. Now that may change a little bit, now that we've got the option to work from home. A long time coming, quite frankly. Yes, a huge loss for businesses.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:08:34] What has been your experience that Geneviève?
Geneviève Pépin: [00:08:37] Well, first of all, I'm very familiar with stress and anxiety. Those characters, I've spent a lot of years of my life living with. I'm not saying that they never show up. I can definitely manage them better now. My story in a nutshell is that I burned myself out a few times.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:08:52] I was very passionate in my career. I really wanted to give it my all. My toolbox was:
💥 a lot of motivation,
💥 a lot of persistence,
💥 a lot of doing, doing, doing, doing
Whatever it takes and really wanting to please people and really want to surpass myself, it's not a bad thing.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:09:10] Definitely not a bad thing. What I didn't know at that time was the driver. I had the driver of fear, of wanting to prove myself and of wanting to prove my worth, which created a lot of stress. I was moving towards my goals. And that was creating a lot of overdoing because I found a lot of gratification in the doing instead of really doing what matters.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:09:33] I find that when I work with managers and when I work with entrepreneurs, those are things that I noticed as well:
💥 The judgment, the “I should be doing more.”
💥 I should be doing this right.
Which leads to so much anxiety. There's so much stress when we have those thoughts that are always judging us.
That's my story around that.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:09:55] At one point I changed when I first stressed out.
I change my job. I thought that this was my boss. I had a bad relationship with my boss. That was very toxic, but that was what it was.
Then I went to another job, which I had a great relationship with my boss. And then I still burned myself out on that one.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:10:12] I was like, well, maybe it's where I live. Maybe it's where I live. That it's too fast-paced maybe the pollution. Let's see. I changed country. I moved from Asia to Europe, and I thought that went well. You know, this is going to work. This is going to do the trick. It's a completely new environment.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:10:28] I got a great job. After a year and a half, I was still coming back, home crying. That's when I realized that I changed everything around me. Thinking that everything was causing a lot of stress and anxiety. Which a lot of it was. Then I realized that when I change everything around me and I saw the exact same patterns happening, I had to realize that a lot of it was how I was creating situations. How I was creating those patterns from my thoughts. How I was interacting with situations.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:10:55] I had to come to the realization where I go, I take myself.
I love the fact that you pivot into the business of play. I also appreciate how you use your skills to change the status quo.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:11:13] That's translating your heart and wisdom as a productivity coach. I'd love for you to speak of the rise of your sort of artsy, authentic self.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:11:23] Wow, my artsy authentic stuff. Thank you so much, Michelle. I would say that the rise of our authentic self is really, I love that you called the rise because for me, it's really about unpeeling all the onion layers on top of it.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:11:37] Often our authentic self, you know that there it's not something we have to find does something outside of us. It's something inside of us. Often buried under a lot of layers of here's who I should be. Here's what I should do. Here is how I should. Which is normal. You know, our brain is just really creating beliefs and stories to protect herself and to serve us. In order to belong in society and to protect us from potential threats, you know, in our childhood or whatever, whether those threats are really threatening to our safety or not, the brain doesn't make a difference. As long as it's perceived as a threat.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:12:12] Absolutely. And often women are working in a man's world. I, for myself know that many of my careers, I was one of only a couple of women. So, trying to fit in, I made the classic mistake of putting the pants on and getting the job done, being a human doing, which is really where men Excel and lost my human being, my creative self.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:12:34] I have worked very hard to claim that back and more important. It has served me well when I've needed to bust really wicked problems in the business world where I've been handed a project of no possibility of achieving any results. I've been a very high performer. What I discovered was I don't like putting my body and my brain under so much pressure.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:12:58] I now often share if you smile, the brain will relax, because you can't smile if you're thinking there's a saber tooth tiger in the boardroom, and also other people's brains, relax as well. You have this great interactive masterclass called Efficiency is Fun. I'd love for you to share about that because you've got some great action steps.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:13:20] What we do in the master class is that we look at what to focus on. The number one thing, when I talk about efficiency with leaders and entrepreneurs look at what is really useful for you to focus on because often we just focus on too many things.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:13:36] Then we talk about how to plan your time in a way that works for you. Let's face it. We've all read the books. We've all had the tips and tricks to plan our time. Maybe it doesn't work for us. Or we don't implement them. We talk about that. Most importantly, we talk about improvising when the plan goes out the window. We use the principle of yes, from improv, where we need to accept and build on what's in front of us.
💡 Whether it is a conversation with somebody.
💡 Whether it is our own.
💡 Whether it is a circumstance that are changing.
Situations that are state changing. How to be adaptable and flexible. Be a little bit more like water in order to continue to make progress instead of staying stuck. We do that.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:14:16] It's an experiential master class. It's not me teaching a bunch of things and telling people, yeah, now go do it. No, no. Like it's really an interactive we play, and we create during the master class. So, it's quite fun and it's free.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:14:43] I think the art of conversation is somewhat lost these days. Your interactive master class Efficiency. Everyone's up for a little fun. You also have the Connection Lab. You offer team building. Skyrocket your collaboration and feedback. That elevates performance.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:15:03] I really liked that idea. Collaboration. I actually am very passionate about intergenerational collaboration as a grandmother. I just love connecting up with different ages. Age agnostic projects are so much fun. I appreciate feedback. I appreciate constructive feedback. I'm not shy about giving feedback. I do ask permission first.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:15:27] I think learning to be conversationalist’s collaborative, and being able to give feedback kindly and constructively, are very powerful tools. Do you want to speak to your Connection Lab?
Geneviève Pépin: [00:15:39] I love that you talked about this because it speaks very much to connecting. Well, first of all, connecting with ourselves and with others, it really starts with listening.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:15:50] So, this is something that we talk about the yes, and which differs. Yes. Is all about listening and accepting. In the workshop, we offer with The Connection Lab Project, we take people through experiences where they get to connect. They can understand themselves better while they're providing feedback.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:16:07] They can understand themselves better in terms of maybe what comes up for them. What trigger come up for them. We use some tools so that they feel better at ease to communicate with people in a way that is a lot smoother than often what we hear. AKA like the feedback sandwich.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:16:26] It's already out there. We really want to bring another perspective to help people understand themselves better and also have a better connection with people that they deal with.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:16:36] Great points.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:16:37] I mean, let's face it every day in conversations people say:
🦋 what did you think …
🦋 when I …
🦋 how could I. …
Like people are asking for feedback and being able to cultivate a strong relationship through quality feedback.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:16:49] That's helping people rise. So powerful. They'll have a link to all of your options and your associates. I want to circle back to your 🐾 dog because I think you've got a fun story that about your 🐾 dog. I would love for you to just wrap us up with a fun story.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:17:14] When we first meet, you speak to the power and presence of a 🐾 dog. I think that is a powerful observation.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:17:29] I have. My 🐾 dogs have been with me for the last five years. I would say that’s what I love about 🐾 dogs. First of all, I think they're hilarious because they are the most honest souls ever.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:17:42] For sure, they are one of my connection ports. When I talk about connection part is something that helps you recharge something that helps you be present. I find that a pet I'm really into 🐾 dogs. So, you know, it can be any pet, but I find that 🐾 dogs are for me. Just, you know, a 🐾 dog snuggles or playing fetch or just tickle, right?
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:18:06] You want to look at a 🐾 dog comfortable anywhere. They go, I'm tired and they just curl up there.
I love your words, a connection port, a place to be present and to recharge. Certainly, when I've heard you speak about having the power and presence of 🐾 dogs, that's something that definitely comes to mind.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:18:28] You know, one thing 🐾 dogs live right in the present. The opportunity to self-witness is so powerful as well. Geneviève, any last words as we wrap up for my global audience?
Geneviève Pépin: [00:18:38] Yes. I would say that, you know, you talk a lot to leaders, and I would say that in order to lead us. We need to lead ourselves first.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:18:47] In order to lead others, we would say often that connection is very important. Getting to know other people that we need is very important. And it also applies to self-leadership. We're connecting where ourselves and being able to know ourselves. And I personally believe that play is a great way to do it.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:19:03] I would definitely encourage people to find what can you include in your life.Whether it is only for fun and it doesn't need to be like monopoly and it can be, as you said, like adding more colors through your notes or doing something that brings you joy, doing something that you do for you for the process of it.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:19:19] Not necessarily for a specific aim and lean into this and go little by little and so that as you get to know yourself better, you're better able to lead yourself and also better able to lead others.
Dr. Michelle St Jane: [00:19:32] I appreciate you. I really do Geneviève. I love the fact that we're going to encourage global leaders to pivot into play.
Geneviève Pépin: [00:19:40] Thank you so much, Michelle, for bringing those conversations to life. It was a pleasure for me to be here.
Outro: Dr. Michelle St Jane is a conscious steward as meaningful leadership in the world and the wider cosmos. Tune in for real talk around life, leadership, and your conscious journey. Be ready to create and cultivate your dreams and wholehearted desires. Your support is valued. Please follow, subscribe, leave a review and a rating. More importantly, share with your connections.
Reach out. I am interested to hear from you. Do you have a topic you'd like to explore? It would be great to have your feedback.
Dr. Michelle St Jane
Podcast Host: Life & Leadership: A Conscious Journey
Let’s Get Social
Mindset & Productivity Coach
🎁 interactive Masterclass link to book: https://calendly.com/gpepin/joy-not-stress
Geneviève is an accredited life coach (IAPC&M), certified mindset specialist, productivity and leadership development coach (Fortune 500 companies), and improv facilitator.
She is passionate about helping stressed out entrepreneurs and leaders go from busy & stressed to happy & productive, as a result of her own journey in the professional world.
Before coaching, Geneviève built her career internationally in event management and marketing, living, working, and traveling in more than 20 countries, in four different languages.