Conversations to Connect
Episode 25 - Amplify Black Voices with Isah Maazing

Episode 25 - Amplify Black Voices with Isah Maazing

September 2, 2020

"It's important for us to understand that the phrase 'Black Lives Matter' simply refers to the notion that there's a specific vulnerability for African Americans that needs to be addressed.  It's not meant to suggest that other lives don't matter.  It's to suggest that other folks aren't experiencing this particular vulnerability." ~ Barak Obama

 

This week we welcome our guest, Isah Kushma, to the podcast for our Amplify Black Voices series.  Isah is an Army officer and combat veteran, has been serving in the Army for over 20 years, and is also a fitness advocate and coach.  She shares her experience as a Black woman in the Army, in the fitness industry, and through her travels around the world.

You can follow Isah on Instagram at @Isahmaazing

 

We hope you enjoy!

Gretchen & Kristy

Episode 34 - Amplify Black Voices with Jessica Gurley

Episode 34 - Amplify Black Voices with Jessica Gurley

July 29, 2020

"When slavery ended, no one sat the freed slaves down for group therapy.  We are still walking around with generational trauma in our DNA that we have to work through." ~ Ashley McGirt

 

This episode in our Amplify Black Voices series we welcome Jessica Gurley, LCSW to the podcast.  Jessica is a therapist with her own practice in the Pittsburgh area but also provides workshops, organizational consulting/training, and more.  She also has a website where you can purchase mental health tee-shirts to help spread awareness about mental health!  We hope you enjoy!

 

https://swcchelp.com - to check out Jessica's practice

https://mentalhealthts.us - to shop mental health tee-shirts

@trytherapy_swcc on Instagram

 

Gretchen & Kristy

Episode 33 - Amplify Black Voices with Raymont Anderson

Episode 33 - Amplify Black Voices with Raymont Anderson

July 6, 2020

"In a racist society it is not enough to be non-racist, we must be anti-racist." ~ Angela Davis

This week in the Amplify Black Voices Series we are joined by Raymont Anderson for a conversation on his experience as a Black, gay man in today's society.

Rev. Dr. Raymont Anderson has frequently been referred to as a Renaissance man and Visionary Thought Leader.  One look at his resume and accomplishments the reason becomes clear. As a lifelong learner with a passion for self-development, personal transformation, transmutation, and transfiguration, he lives his bliss as a teacher, minister, speaker, workshop/seminar facilitator, mentor, father, grandfather, and more.  His mission is: To live, move, and be an *A.C.T.I.V.E. member of society who serves to Educate, Elucidate, and Emancipate, people, and communities to Awaken and Empower themselves. Through his service and through the Transformative Teachings, Technologies, and Practices of New Thought, these people and communities recognize, realize, and materialize their Full Divine Potential! *[Authentic, Compassionate, Transparent, Inspired, Vibrant, Empowered]  He is a Licensed CSL minister and currently serves as the Senior Minister at the Center for Spiritual Living DC Greater Baltimore. He is also an author, visual artist, and ASL Performing Artist.
 
Websites: 
Episode 32 - Amplify Black Voices with Ashley Comans

Episode 32 - Amplify Black Voices with Ashley Comans

June 28, 2020

"It's up to all of us - Black, white, everyone - no matter how well-meaning we think we might be, to do the honest, uncomfortable work of rooting it (racism) out." ~ Michelle Obama

Join us for our Amplify Black Voices series where we will be featuring BIPOC sharing their stories.  We will be turning the mic over to them to share whatever they feel is needed to speak out about right now.  

Ashley Comans is our first guest in the series.  She currently works at APOST as the HYPE Project Coordinator.  She got her degree in broadcast journalism and communication studies from Clarion University of Pennsylvania, which led her to work as a production specialist with WPXI-TV Pittsburgh.  While there, she worked with the Emmy award winning morning news cast in production.  She has also served on the school board for the Wilkinsburg School District.

In 2019, Ashley was nominated as one of Pittsburgh Magazine's 40 under 40 as well as being nominated in 2017 for the Athena Young Professional Award.  

She cohosts a podcast called Black Political Millenials, which you can find on Instagram @blackpoliticalmillenials and listen on Spotify, Apple, and Anchor.

We hope you enjoy!

Gretchen & Kristy

Episode 31 - Change & Uncertainty

Episode 31 - Change & Uncertainty

June 14, 2020

"There is nothing more certain and unchanging than uncertainty and change." ~ John F. Kennedy

 

So much has changed over the last three months.  Kristy and Gretchen finally get back together to reflect on the pandemic of COVID19, how it has had on their lives, as well as the current racial climate, which are both impacting the world.

We hope you enjoy!

Gretchen & Kristy

Episode 30 - Men’s Mental Health

Episode 30 - Men’s Mental Health

February 19, 2020

"For the longest time, I thought asking for help was a sign of weakness because that's kind of what society teaches us.  Well, you know what?  If someone wants to call me weak for asking for help, that's their own problem.  Because I'm saving my own life." - Michael Phelps

 

Mental health is something that every person deals with but in our society the struggles that men and women deal with are viewed very differently.  Men are often left feeling like they are weak if they need help and access to help and support is difficult to get.  In this week's episode we start the conversation on men's mental health with our guests Cory and Hill.

We hope you enjoy!

Gretchen & Kristy

Episode 29 - Anxiety in Everyday Life

Episode 29 - Anxiety in Everyday Life

February 5, 2020

"Anxiety is a thin stream of fear trickling through the mind.  If encouraged, it cuts a channel into which all other thoughts are drained." ~ Arthur Somers Roche

For most of us anxiety is often a part of everyday life.  In this podcast we welcome guests Nicole & Shelly to share about their experiences of anxiety in their daily life at work, home, and with family & friends.

The quote that Kristy reads at the beginning is from the book "The Faraway Nearby" by Rebecca Solnit....it reads:

"We think we tell stories, but often stories tell us, tell us to love or hate, to see or be seen.  Often, too often, stories saddle us, ride us, whip us onward, tell us what to do, and we do it without questioning.
The task of learning to be free requires learning to hear them, to question them, to pause and hear silence, to name them, and then become a story-teller."

We hope you enjoy!

Gretchen & Kristy

Episode 28 - Anxiety or Burnout?

Episode 28 - Anxiety or Burnout?

January 23, 2020

"Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes....including you."

Burnout is something that we all can experience just as all of us can experience anxiety.  Sometimes our burnout is because of our anxiety, sometimes our anxiety is because of our burnout, and sometimes they fuel each other to the point where it is hard to differentiate.  In this episode we explore how anxiety and burnout manifest in our lives as well as things we can do to help better manage or avoid experiencing increased anxiety and burnout.  Hope you enjoy!

Gretchen & Kristy

Episode 27 - Conversations on Anxiety

Episode 27 - Conversations on Anxiety

November 6, 2019

"Anything that a human being does experience is, by definition, part of what a human being can experience - and therefore 'normal'." ~ Mark Tyrrell

 

Anxiety is an emotion that we all have but often makes us feel different, abnormal, and very alone.  In this episode we start a conversation on anxiety to better understand the emotion, the brain structure and why anxiety is an important emotion, as well as the diagnosis of generalized anxiety disorder.  

 

We will be doing more podcasts on anxiety and would love to hear from you if you have any questions, experiences, or comments you want to share with us!  Feel free to send us a private message on Facebook, Instagram, or through our website www.conversationstoconnect.com

Enjoy!

Gretchen & Kristy

Episode 26 - Success & Perfection

Episode 26 - Success & Perfection

October 9, 2019

"The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself." ~ Anna Quindlen

 

What is success?  How do we define it?  When do we achieve it and how hard do we push ourselves or avoid it?  How does perfection and our fear of judgment, shame, and blame play into how we view success and achievements? In this episode we have a discussion about success, achievements, perfection, and how all of those impact our lives.

Gretchen & Kristy

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