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The top 10 podcast episodes of all time

When you start any creative project or enterprise, your peeps will have favorites. They’ll write you notes or make comments about stuff and you’ll be all, “Yah? THAT was helpful? Really?”

These are the That’s What She Said podcast episodes deemed most interesting, informative, helpful, witty, and/or useful by virtue of their having garnered the most listens.

Also I’ve share my top choices, because (IT’S MY SHOW DAMMIT) and there are a few episodes that deserve a listen even if they don’t have the spiffiest, bullet-point-iest titles.

Depression and running your business

This episode is far and away the most popular episode of That’s What She Said, as it handles my ins and outs of fumbling through depression while also earning a full-time, no-backup income from my business. The Depression Chronicles include the rest of my notes, battles with, and tips about struggling through depression over the years.

Pay Me, Dammit!

When it comes to getting paid, most of us aren’t as tough and alpha and in charge as we’d like. Most of us need a few words of encouragement to get people to pay us, reimburse us, buy from us, or otherwise give us the dollars. Pay Me, Dammit! includes seven straightforward strategies for bringing money you’re owed (as well as new money) into your business.

How to give fear the finger

If creative peeps and business owners didn’t face fear, we’d all be making endless projects and launching the shit out of them all the time. Instead, we get scared. We delay the books, we don’t finish the projects, we put off making the phone call to that person who offered to promote us, we hide in our homes and pretend our houses need a deep cleaning and our hard drives need to be more organized and our books need to be sorted by color, no author, no subject…you get the idea.

When your fear isn’t trying to get you home at 4 a.m. on the subway by guiding you through the streets — when it’s just sabotaging your creative life with the fire of a thousand suns as you try to do something simple like make a poem or a painting or a photograph or a lesson or an object — it’s okay to give it the finger. Here’s how.

Input, output, and getting way more done

Have you ever felt tired in ways that sleep couldn’t touch? Not physically tired, but bone weary. Depleted. Absolutely out of fucks.

In those moments when you’re most exhausted, you’re not facing an “I need to sleep in” issue. You’re facing an input issue. This episode of That’s What She Said dives deep into what you need most when you’re functioning at something like 3% capacity.

When you feel like a fraud

…self-explanatory. 😉

Moving through fear and all the other feels

It seems that our default as humans is to shut down our emotions when they’re anything but happy skipping lalala joy and rainbows. We stuff them down, cover them with food, drown them in alcohol, smoke them away, tuck them out of sight, or otherwise do some version of OH SWEET LORD I’LL DO ANYTHING TO NOT FEEL THE FEELS.

What if we stopped doing that? One feel at a time. Starting now.

…and now, my favorites. If you’re new to me or to the podcast, this is where I recommend you start.

Stop drinking the unicorn blood (and put down that horcrux)

You guys! This is, hands down, my favorite episode of That’s What She Said. It’s Harry Potter meets podcasting meets business in a way that you’re guaranteed to enjoy. I’m not saying anymore than that — just go and listen.

Magic often feels like broken

If someone had scooped me up at age 7 and whispered, “Don’t worry, it’s just that you’re magic,” I would have saved myself the following 27 years of freaking out and feeling like no part of me was normal. I would have realized that yes, I still have a body and have to sleep and eat and be human, but the rest of me is basically pure magic.

I’ve been shamed for it, others have tried to scream it out of me, I’ve been told I’m a terrible employee and that I would never be able to work for anyone ever again. I’ve had lovers make fun of my hair and my outfits and my work. I’ve had accountants and bosses and old white men laugh in my face when I told them my ideas.

…and I’ve survived, magic intact.

This is for you, friend, because magic often feels like broken.

The 3 types of business time

When I figured this out, my daily schedule changed. I tend to put most of my daily emphasis on making. You might put your daily business emphasis on getting shit done — e-mailing, accounting, invoicing, shipping, editing — but both of us ignore moguling. Find out what it is, how it works, and why it’s so damn important in this episode.

Find Your Spirit Animal

…because why not? It would appear that in a past life I was some sort of wise woman and in this life, that means I can help you find your spirit animal in under ten minutes. My own spirit animal, Momo, has helped me to face my fears on many occasions, and makes me laugh when I least expect it. I know you think it’s weird. I don’t care. Go find it.

P.S. Here’s where you can listen to every That’s What She Said episode.

Psssst! I am not a machine. Neither are you.

I’m all about making stuff.

I make stuff for a living: books and classes and paintings and even a real-life meetup at Harry Potter World for entrepreneurs.

I get shit done. Writing thousands of words per day, plus creating a weekly podcast, course materials, and the occasional ghostwriting project.

But when I see headlines about ‘faster ways to create content’ or endless listicles full of hacks to be even MORE productive, my heels dig in and I want to hiss like a pissed-off goose who’s just spotted a vulnerable, food-carrying toddler across the parking lot.

I want to run at the toddler that is the Productivity Police and steal that entire loaf of bread and nip at those heels until they run away, crying because that’s what angry geese do. AND THEY GET AWAY WITH IT EVERY TIME.

First: ‘content creation’ isn’t even a thing.

I make photos, I make programs, I make books.

I don’t make ‘content:’ a nameless, faceless commodity that we can trade like coins.

I’ll give you 1 photo contentitron for 2 word contentitrons, okay?
NO. NOT OKAY.

I get paid to write.
I get paid to make stuff.
I even get paid to help others make stuff.

But I never, ever try to make more stuff, faster, for the sake of hacking my productivity or boosting my content creation levels.

If I’m scheduled for every minute of every day (i.e. following all the productivity hacks), I’m awake and showering with fucking butter in my coffee (BUTTER. IN MY COFFEE.) with the sunrise (no alarms allowed), working out within the hour, sipping warm lemon juice to make my kidneys happy even though the concoction tastes like ass, and getting to my computer to commence content creation at precisely the same time every single day.

Which means that when I’m not showered and buttered by 7:02 a.m., as I scheduled so fastidiously only yesterday, I DEEM MYSELF A FAILURE FOR THE WHOLE DAY. Useless. Horrible. Why even be alive.

Aside from the failure-if-you’re-not-on-schedule issue, the Productivity Police go off the rails when they pretend we can shove more and more and more and more into a day with no consequences.

The ideal for human functioning, particularly of the creative variety, is to do less and less.

We sit, we move, we read. We ponder, we think, we shower, we make.  We see the ocean.  The spaces and gaps are the most treasured, most valuable, and most significant parts of my life. I don’t write because I’m a machine who needs to produce fifteen hundred to two thousand words a day.

I write because I’m NOT a machine and I need to process my life with those fifteen hundred daily words.

Further: I don’t want to hire someone to clean my house and make my meals and walk my dog and answer my e-mail and source my blog photos and update my Instagram for me.

I want to do all those things because I want to have the full human experience. My sitting at the computer to write for 12 hours because I am suddenly free of adult responsibilities that can be outsourced doesn’t mean I’ll have 12 hours’ worth of things to say. If anything, I’ll say less, because I haven’t had the down time our very-human, not-machine-like brains require to process the many things I’ve read, seen, witnessed, listened to, interacted with, or overheard on any given day.

I can’t scale my writing efforts to produce 6,000 daily words simply because I give myself four times as much calendar space. I have a rhythm, I have a daily word count that’s been fairly consistent for the past 17 years and that has failed most every single time I’ve tried pushing past it with the guidance of the ‘wise’ productivity counsel.

I’m not a machine.

I am not a ‘content creator.’
I do not pump out blog posts for the sake of blog posts, podcasts for the sake of podcasts, or classes for the sake of classes.

I do not spill my most boring, productive-ly productive work onto the internet just for the sake of hitting a word count, an image count, a post count, or an episode count.

I bring my best to the table.

My best cannot be hacked. It cannot be commodified.
And it most definitely doesn’t require butter in my coffee.

P.S.  Don’t let the Adultopus win.

Let’s start a whole new game.

I did a dumb thing.  I did the thing where you go looking at old acquaintances and see that, from all online indicators and based on external factors, they are kicking your ass in every way possible. Oh, your program has X graduates, meaning you’ve raked in millions of dollars since last we spoke? NEAT.

Your empire gets larger and larger at every moment, while my own influence seems to be the same as it was a few years ago? AWESOME. I’M SO HAPPY FOR YOU.

The thing is…it’s my own freaking fault.  One: I decided to go looking.  And two: when I decided that I was going to go my own way, I also decided that I wasn’t going to measure success by the typical standard. That means I’m not tracking likes, views, shares, or follows as a measure of my business’ influence.

I’ve tracked the numbers and the dollars, then thrown myself into the game of making more dollars, whatever the cost, and found the whole thing to be a giant rat race of my own making.

So guys? Gals, ladies, peeps, friends, and the occasional teen who stumbles onto my blog when you’re reading about beating depression (::waves::)?

LET’S START A WHOLE NEW GAME.

Let’s see how much we can give away.

Let’s stop taking classes based on doubling your motherfucking Instagram following and start looking to our own hearts to mine its depths.

Let’s ask a new set of questions, ones without definitive answers or 6-pillar blueprints.

Questions like:

How much joy can you bring to your life through your business?
How many awesome things can you make?
How much time and money can you give away because you want to, not because you’re addicted to people pleasing?
How much can you help people grow, or change, or see themselves in a new light?
How much fun can you possibly have while also earning a remarkable living?

Those are the FIRST questions to be silenced in the race to more, bigger, and better, (which is often disguised as specific, direct, and concrete).

It’s easy to fork over a bunch of money and follow a set of guidelines. You do the worksheets, you watch the videos, you work and work and work and work and WORK and you make all those people who want more followers and likes and comments insanely jealous. But.

What of your heart?

What about the small, deep bits of your soul that get left behind or ignored when you round off your own corners in the name of “going pro” or taking your business to the “next level”…?

What are you bringing to the table that only you can make?

Because it hasn’t all been done.

Really. It hasn’t.

No other Kristen Kalp with pink hair and a killer sock collection has had a business program called Dominatrixing and used it to help clients show more of their true selves to others in business while increasing both business profits and satisfaction.

No other [your name] with [neat attribute] and [other, killer attribute] has made a [thing] and used it to [awesome action verb].

Maybe you’ll end up jealous of those making millions, and maybe you’ll become one of the ones making millions, but me? Kristen Kalp, of the pink hair and otterly adorable socks? THEY HAVE OTTERS ON THEM SHUT UP I LOVE THOSE SOCKS.

I intend to give away a million dollars before my time on Earth is up.

It’s the biggest, highest most fun goal I can dream up, and it might take a lifetime to achieve. I’m okay with that.

For serious. That’s my goal. It’s huge and fun and lovely and light and it means more to me than a million [insert social media platform here] followers ever could. By my calculations, I’m 2.6% of the way there.

So um…YES! I am crushing it(ish)!

Here’s to your finding a goal worth giving your life to; and to your heart opening so wide that only dreams bigger than you ever imagined possible can find their way in.

P.S.  This was an episode of That’s What She Said!  Binge-listen to the whole podcast right here.