I am so glad you joined us because we have Dr. Froswa’ Booker-Drew and Heather Dominick. Froswa’ is a partnership broker, author, speaker, trainer and Cofounder of Heritage Giving Circle. Heather is the Founder and Leader of The Highly Sensitive Entrepreneur Movement. These two are interesting. They’ve got great companies.
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Social Capital with Dr. Froswa’ Booker-Drew
I am here with Dr. Froswa’ Booker-Drew. She is a partnership, broker and a relationship leadership junkie. She’s a connector, an author, a speaker, a trainer and Cofounder of HERitage Giving Fund. It’s so nice to have you here, Froswa’.
I am so excited to be here with you.
I was so excited to have you on the show. I don’t get a lot of PhDs who are such networking geniuses. I was looking at what you do. I could spend all day listing what you’ve done. You’re a semi-finalist for the SMU TED Talks, you have an outstanding African American alumni award, 2009 woman of the year and all these different sorority types of university groups. What you’ve done is impressive and I’m curious to get a little bit more background on you. First of all, I’m curious about your Ph.D., what it’s in and a little bit more on your background would be great.
It has just been a process of doing and not thinking about it. I love people and that’s what my Ph.D. is about. I went to Antioch University. It’s an amazing place that stretched me tremendously. Although it is in leadership and change, I focused on this wonderful work out of Harvard University. There are two professors who wrote a book called Immunity to Change, Kegan and Lahey. What I wanted to do was see if I could use their tool, which was an immunity map. Usually, it’s used in organizational development and helping people to look at why they can’t create the change they want to see. I wanted to see if that same tool can be used to help women who were diverse to build relationships or build social capital. I have been intrigued for years on how people connect to each other. My research is just an extension of what I’ve been doing for all of these years.
I am very fascinated about assessments and different tools and all the things that determine what’s holding people back or where they stand in terms of personality and different ways to relate. That would be interesting research about leadership and change. I teach a lot of courses in those areas and it change is something that’s so huge right now with innovation and everything coming up. I’m sure you get a lot of people questioning you if since you’re the expert in that area. I want to talk about that a little bit more, but I still want to focus on this documentary you were in. You’re a part of a documentary, Friendly Captivity, which is a film that follows a cast of seven women from Dallas to India. Tell me what’s that and what got you into that?
That was life-changing. There was a group of us who didn’t know each other and initially, I thought it was going to be Survivor and that they were going to just drop us off over there and tell us to figure it out. That’s not what happened at all. As much as we look at women in countries like India that are developing, we recognize that we were in captivity. With all the materialism and things that we have here in the US, we saw these women and girls who despite these unbelievable odds, they still had this piece about them and still were able to thrive in the midst of so much tragedy and challenges. It forced us to do some self-reflection, which is why the title of the documentary is Friendly Captivity. Despite that we may not have some of those issues here in the US, many of us are in captivity and don’t realize it to our materialism and to our ideas of what success is. It was one of the most profound experiences. We do it with different women who were on different life journeys and paths and experiences at that time. It helped us to not only look at the women in India but to look at ourselves and reflect on how we interact with each other here in the US. It was an amazing experience.
I was talking about perceptions with somebody because some of my research is in that area. It’s our perception of things. Do you think we should be put into foreign cultures so that we get more empathy and get out of our bubble?
This is the challenge with doing that. If you’re not aware of some of your own preconceived notions, sometimes you can go in those spaces, walk away and still think that you’re better than everybody else in becoming leaders. It requires people who are open and willing to unpack their own stuff before you go. Otherwise, it can just create this narrative of, “I’m in a great space because that’s not me.” We have to be aware of our own privilege when we’re walking into those spaces. I had to check mine at the door a couple of times because bathroom situations were very unique. I’ll just leave it at that. It was very different. Having to check that and go, “This doesn’t mean my experience is better, it’s just different.” That’s the piece that is missing when we talk about being open to different points of view. We have to want to be open and be willing to have these cognitive dissonance moments where you’re going, “The way that I thought this should operate, maybe this isn’t the only way to do things.”
Better is subjective. Everything is subjective. It’s so interesting to look at different cultures. It’s so important to develop empathy and try and put yourself in somebody else’s situation. I know you do a lot of work with women. You’re the author of two workbooks for women, Ready for a Revolution: 30 Days to Jolt Your Life and Rules of Engagement: Making Connections Last. What are these workbooks and how do you use them?
The first one was the strangest thing. I was working on my Ph.D. and wrote a book before the dissertation. I had brought these women together and I was listening to their stories. What is so crazy is I knew them all, but they didn’t know each other. To see these women who were so different racially, age, just experience had them come together and begin to start talking about their lives. What I noticed at that moment was when we have these safe spaces and we’re able to create trust, people are willing to share, but we don’t have a lot of safe spaces. That book came out of the stories that are heard from the women and my own personal stories on how do we build relationships? For me, it was how do you look at your own narrative because your narrative could be blocking you from attracting the kinds of people that you want in your life? That experience solidified that for me.
The second book was a silent retreat. As a result of that, I had gone on a silent retreat to a monastery and I do this periodically just to be quiet. I decided to take a group of women on a silent retreat. You can imagine how challenging that was because everybody wanted to talk. I gave them all these guided facilitated activities that they could do in groups but also do alone. When it was over, I wanted to keep the women encouraged. That book is a book of devotionals to help women think about their own personal stories, but to think about as well, how do you connect to the greater community? What does it look like to know your own story, but be aware of the stories of others to create change? It’s about how in 30 days you can get focused to do what it is you want to do with your life.
What was your dissertation topic?
My dissertation topic was about using the immunity to change. It was called from bonding to bridging using the ITC, which is the Immunity to Change process to create change. I wanted to see if I could get women form this ideal of bonding social capital, which is connecting to everybody like you because that’s easy. I wanted to see if I could use that tool to help them do bridging social capital for all the women who came in and they had an improvement goal that they wanted to focus on. That tool would help them think about what are their competing commitments. If you want to lose weight, there has to be something that’s competing in your head that is this state. All of us know what to do, but we just don’t apply it. Once you begin to start identifying what those competing commitments are and what worries you about achieving that goal, the next piece is thinking about what are the big assumptions. If the goal happens, what do you think is the worst thing that could occur?
Once women started sharing their immunity maps, it was interesting the narratives because now they were starting to hold each other accountable. They were starting to say, “I go through that.” One experience was mind-blowing for me, going back to perspective. We had two women in the group who were both unemployed. One was African-American and one was Anglo. Their experiences with unemployment were so different because one was in a very high position and was very affluent. When she lost the job, she lost her identity. The other was trying to figure out how to survive. They were able to share their experiences and help each other through it with different tools and resources. Because of the space that was created for them and that tool, these women were then developing some relationships that even now, they’re still talking to each other. That’s what I wanted to do.
You talked about assumptions. That’s one of the things I wrote about the book I just wrote about curiosity. Assumptions, it’s that voice in your head. It’s the thing that tells you, “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” If 85% of what we fear is going to happen doesn’t happen, we’ve talked ourselves out of all this. It’s so important to look at what we do, men, women, and everybody. You are also a co-founder of HERitage Giving Fund. I assume that that is what you’re dealing with. You do your training and you’re speaking. Are you doing it as part of this HERitage Giving Fund?Many of us are in captivity and don't realize it to our materialism and to our ideas of what success is. Click To Tweet
The giving circle is so unique. It was a young lady who came to me and another lady and said, “I want to start a fund that looks at supporting African American women’s nonprofits.” Many of these small to midsize nonprofits don’t capture the attention of larger funders. We started this giving group through the Dallas Women’s Foundation, which has now become the Texas Women’s Foundation. There is an Asian women’s giving circle that has done so well called Orchid. We saw the work that they were doing and thought, “This is something that we’d like to be able to do.” In our first year, we raised about $30,000 and distributed in December. All of this is just women putting in their money. I’ve been so intrigued by it because I’m watching so many young Millennial women who are building careers and taking their hard-earned funds saying, “I want to put this towards this effort for us to be able to distribute.” I’m honored to be one of the cofounders and serve as the grants chair.
We’re trying to get people to think about philanthropy in a different way. You don’t have to write huge checks to make a difference. Your $500 that you pledge in at $50 something a month, your $1,000 that you’re pledging monthly, that makes a difference. We want to help women to realize the power of these circles. In addition, it’s been the relationships and seeing how this giving helps women think about the ways in which we support each other. That has been phenomenal for me to sit back and watch how women are talking to each other using the philanthropy as a tool to make a difference. It’s also making a difference in their own lives and how they perceive themselves and their communities.
I am trying to figure out which one takes up most of your time because you’ve got all these different things you’re doing. You also mentioned the semi-finalist for the SMU TEDx, but that was in 2012. That’s been a while since you did that. What was your topic?
I talked about the best social capital. I talked about how to build relationships and getting people to think differently about it.
What is the biggest part of your day? Is it speaking or training?
I’m in meetings most of my days because of my day job. I work for the State Fair of Texas as the director as community affairs. Most of my day is spent working with so many different kinds of people and community. My role, not only do I provide grants to local organizations and specific geographic areas, but I’m helping with a lot of different initiatives using this amazing vehicle to help a lot of organizations in this community. I’ve spent a lot of times in meetings and doing that social capital thing looking at how do I not only serve as a bridge but connecting to my existing relationships with bonding. I find that I spend a lot of times saying, “You should meet this person.” I’m finding that we believe programs create change. The reality is people create change. It’s relationships. People get to know what gifts and talent are available. Sometimes in big cities like Dallas, there’s so much going on but there’s not a lot of coordination. I see a lot of what I’m doing is serving as a catalyst in bringing people together to solve some difficult issues.
You bring up difficult issues. I was writing a speech. Somebody had nominated me to receive this award. It was some women leadership type of a situation. She wanted me to write about how I’ve overcome difficult situations. It’s perspective to me. I don’t feel that I’ve overcome that much. When I was reading your note to me, you said how you were bullied as a child. You sound like you’ve had to overcome a lot in your life. I appreciate the attention that I’ve received for certain things that I’ve done, but I haven’t had overcome things other people have. I’m curious how you overcame that and what has that done to make you so interested in relationships?
Right after I went through that, I stop trusting and it limited my ability to have the relationships that I wanted. I begin to stereotype women, to be very honest. I thought, “I couldn’t trust anybody. People are going to be mean.” I began to attract what I thought. When I changed my thinking and started recognizing the power and the beauty that existed and there are some people that are going to be challenging and that’s okay. It’s more about them than it is about me. I had the most amazing friends, male and female, but I had to change in order for that to happen. Although it was a very difficult time in my life, it served as my opinion of a foundation. When I was in high school, our house caught fire and we had to move in with different relatives. That was a very difficult experience to go through.
My parents filed bankruptcy and there were a lot going on. I would never want to go through that again. I do believe that those situations can serve as either a noose and restrict your life or they can serve as opportunities to help you see what you’re made of and propel you into whatever destiny that you have. For me, I just chose to think about it very differently and see it as a tool. It’s helped me become more sympathetic and empathetic to people. Now, I can be advocating and go, “I know what that’s like to lose your clothes. I know what it’s like when you’re in high school and you lose your hair and you’re trying to figure out what’s going on and all of these different stressors that you’re having.” I’m able to help young people and serve as a bridge now because I know what that was like for me as a kid.
The social media, the stresses and the things that people have to deal with now as kids, it’s just so awful to think of what it would be like. I’m almost grateful that my kids missed all of it. It’s so challenging. It’s such a diverse climate, which is great. I want to diversify. When people are different, sometimes they can be cruel and it’s so hard. You work as a diversity ambassador for the American Red Cross. You deal with diversity with that. What advice would you give people who have kids that are growing up in this junior high or high school level where that’s when the girls and the boys all get mean?
Listen to your kids. My daughter is a freshman in college now. One of the things that I love is my daughter calls me and shares with me very personal things and her feelings on what’s going on. The way that started was when she was a little girl, she would get in the car from school, I would ask, “How was your day?” I listened and when she saw I was listening, she would tell that I didn’t have any judgment. I would ask questions like, “What does that mean for you?” If a friend was making a bad decision instead of me going nuts about it where I would shut her down in talking, I’m like, “What does that mean for you? What do you think about that?” I’m helping my daughter become a critical thinker. In navigating the social media stuff, she knows she can come to mom and dad and talk and have a conversation with grandma, but she’s got a foundation now to think critically. Instead of being someone who is so reactionary to everything, she now has the ability to look at things and go, “I don’t know if I want to do that because these are the consequences.” We miss out, in my opinion. When I was growing up, critical thinking was taught and was a part of everything that we did. It’s not like that anymore. Parents are going to be more hands-on in helping their kids become critical thinkers.
That’s exactly one of the things I trained in the training courses on curiosity on how to develop critical thinking by becoming more curious. We don’t see enough of that. We try to incorporate that. I’ve taught thousands in business courses and we do try to incorporate critical thinking, but I think they could be better. Organizations expect you to come in thinking critically and you don’t always do it. They’re not set up to train that. If we could develop curiosity in people and make people realize those assumptions, that voice in their head is holding them back and their fears. Based on those assumptions and sometimes all the things that we talk ourselves out of because we think we’re not going to be interested and it’s going to be too hard.
We would be able to embrace a much more powerful end result in work and in life. It comes naturally to a lot of people and your family was good at instilling a certain amount in you. Some people can have great family members and still have teachers or somebody else. You never know the impact of the people and different relationships in your life or what they’ll have on you. It’s wonderful to hear that you chose to not let that stop you. When your house burned down, some people would. I’m always fascinated by what it is. What do you think was in you that was different that made you go the positive route?
It was relationships. It was having a Ms. Delamar who was a teacher at my school who invested in me and cared about me. It was the very hard English teachers that made me accountable and my parents. When you talk about curiosity, I remember my mother would buy me these books that would come in the mail for me to start reading. Reading opened my mind to think about all these places that I’d never visited. What’s missing for so many people in our society is, we don’t have these places to be curious and creative. As a result, innovation doesn’t exist as much as it could in our organizations. We spend so much time talking about change management for organizations that we don’t help people deal with change in their own lives very well. It’s thinking about what that process looks like for individuals. We’ve got it down for organizations. Because of what I went through as a kid, I had to learn a change management process. That change of thinking was a change management process. At the time, I didn’t know what I was doing. I realized that if I say negative, it wasn’t going to help and I was going to keep getting the same stuff. I wanted something different so I had to do something different.
We’re starting to see a lot more mindfulness coming out than I’ve ever seen before. I had Daniel Goleman and he was the genius behind all the work in emotional intelligence and now he’s dealing with more mindfulness type of things. Ellen Langer was on my show. She’s the mother of mindfulness. You see that people are trying to look within right now more than ever that I’ve ever seen. Do you find that it’s more so now than ever in the workplace?You begin to attract what you think. Click To Tweet
You’re seeing it happen, but there has to be some catalyst to say that that’s important. What I’m finding is helping people think about this space for reflection. In our society with all the apps and everything that we have, we’re too busy to even pay attention to some of the detox apps, but we’ll load them up on our phones. I don’t think that we are creating spaces even in organizations to be mindful. I see it happening, but there’s so much more that occurs. Making sure that your teams, as you’re putting out product instead of waiting until a catastrophe happens and go, “We should examine that.” How do you create these feedback loops and these spaces both for our organizations to do that? Even in our personal lives. When you go home from work, is there space to reflect and think about your day? As much as there is coming out, there’s still a lot more that needs to happen, especially with our young people. Because of all the influences that they have, this has to be much more part of their curriculum.
I’m seeing a lot more people who are in demand because they are all into preparedness training now and that’s what you’re talking about in so many respects. You’re thinking about what’s the worst that could happen in the organization. We’re seeing as many people going to organizations talking to people on a personal level. I had Melissa Agnes on my show and others who are great at crisis management. What happens when somebody gets pulled off your airplane and it’s on video? That type of thing.
It’s great that we’re starting to do that before these crises. Communication situations come in that people are now starting to think that we need to do this better. That’s great. We need to also look at how we do it even more for our personal lives. I’m excited to your point that people are having these conversations and that it’s become an embedded into the culture. It just means that there’s still a lot of work to do.
That’s a great place to end our conversation because you offer a lot of great information for people. This is a conversation that could continue in so many ways. I think a lot of people would want to know how can they reach you if they wanted you to speak or consult with them. Is there a website you’d want to share or something else?
You can find me at FroswasRules.com and I’m easy to look up. I have a column now on Business Woman Media. You can even contact me through the column. I am easy to find and I love talking to people and looking at ways that we can collaborate to create the change we want to see in our communities.
Froswa’, thank you so much for being on the show. This has been so fascinating. I enjoyed it.
Thank you for having me.
Highly Sensitive Entrepreneurs with Heather Dominick
I am here with Heather Dominick. She’s a former high school drama teacher who collaborated with none other than Bette Midler. She’s got an interesting background. She’s the winner of the 2015 Best of Manhattan Coaching Award. She’s the creator of the 2014 Stevie Award-winning virtual event, A Course in Business Miracles. She’s got a unique background and we’re going to talk to her about highly sensitive entrepreneur movement. I’m very interested in her founding and leading of that group. It’s so nice to have you here, Heather.
Thank you. I’m excited to be having this conversation with you.
This is a little different. I’m fascinated, first of all, you get to meet Bette Midler. What was that?
It was a beautiful and fortunate opportunity. It’s probably just a clashing of the cosmos, but the real short of it is that my former career was as a high school drama teacher. I took my first full-time job teaching at a high school on Long Island, which was a very high caliber public school. Then I did something that was very odd for anyone who’s in the education world. I left that job rather than accepting tenure and took a job teaching at an inner-city public high school. I did it all because I lived in Manhattan at the time, which is where I still live in New York City. When I was working at this school on Long Island, I commuted about an hour and a half each way. When I had the opportunity to take the inner-city public school position, it meant a twenty-minute walk to work. I chose lifestyle over financials because it was about 50% pay cut. There’s so much that I learned from that experience.
One of the opportunities that I received that I did not know was going to be an opportunity at the time that I took the position, which is that I got to partner directly with Bette Midler. The reason why is because it was a very large public inner-city school that had adopted at that time this model of education referred to as houses. Within a public school of 3,000-plus students and fourteen New York City building floors, the school was broken down into these smaller houses. I was hired into the performing arts house. Another very innovative aspect of that inner-city school at that time was that each house was partnered with a community supporter.
For example, there was the law school house and they were partnered with a law firm in Manhattan. In the performing art house, we were partnered with Bette Midler. I worked very closely with her. We redesigned an inner-city school classroom into a black box theater. I was the director of the first musical that had been done at that school in over 25 years. Our students were costumed by reconfigurations of the previous costumes that were redesigned by her former personal designer who came in. We had the best-looking costumes in the version of the Wiz that you can ever imagine. That’s a little bit of it.
She’s tiny, isn’t she? She not very tall. She looks little to me.
She’s very small.If you want something different, do something different. Click To Tweet
I saw her when they redid Murphy Brown. Candice Bergen is not that tall and she looked giant next to her, and I’m thinking she must be little. Bette Midler is great. I love her. What an interesting backstory to have that. Now, you’re doing different things which I’m fascinated by this Highly Sensitive Entrepreneur Movement because that’s different. I haven’t had anybody talk about that type of thing on the show and I want to know what it is exactly and what got you interested in it.
After being employed as a high school drama teacher, I left that position where I was working side by side with Bette to start my own business. I knew nothing about being self-employed. My first business was as a nutrition and wellness coach. I have been self-employed for fifteen years now. As part of my self-employment journey, I was about five years into the business. At that time, I had transitioned from nutrition and wellness into supporting other wellness practitioners, being able to build their business from much more of an energetic and spiritual marketing approach. I brought my business across $1 million mark for the first time and it was a very dark night of the soul experience. I always like to highlight that it’s not the amount of money that I generated, but it was the way that I had gone about it. In my belief, every dark night of the soul has the opportunity to produce a great gift.
What came out of that time for me was learning that I was highly sensitive. I had never heard that term or that phrase at that time. When I did through an introduction to Dr. Elaine Aron who is the founding researcher of The Highly Sensitive and The Highly Sensitive Person from her research work in the mid-‘90s, learning that term and learning what it meant didn’t surprise me so much. What surprised me was how highly sensitive I was. According to one of Dr. Aron’s assessments, I was literally off the charts, highly sensitive. The real short of what that means is that according to Dr. Aron and her research, there are 20% of us who are born into the world highly sensitive. It means that our nervous system is wired differently than someone who is not highly sensitive. That different wiring means that we interpret stimulation at a much higher degree than someone who’s not highly sensitive. The real keys there are you’re born into the world this way. I always like to say parents didn’t do it to you.
Other than their genes, right?
Possibly, but not always, which is also interesting. It’s literally who you are and how you’re coded. The key also is that we processed stimulation at a much higher degree. That means that we have tendencies to go into what I have termed in my work as HSE shadows. Most of us were not taught how to manage our highly sensitive system because we’re a small percentage of the global population. The rest of the world is designed for the other 80%. When I learned that I was highly sensitive, I applied one of my foundational principle teachings, which is that your ideal client is a version of you. I took Dr. Aron’s assessment into a group of 25 women entrepreneurs that I was working with in person at the time. I had them all take the assessment and every single woman in that room was highly sensitive.
I want to know what exactly are you sensitive to? You said stimulation. Can you be a little specific on that? I think other people might have that question.
It’s across the board. You can think all six senses. You will often hear things at a much deeper degree than others. Reacting to loud sounds, reacting to strong senses in terms of smell, reacting to bright lights, reacting to even an input of information, physical and emotional pain. I was about to say the energy of others. You very often pick up on feelings, emotions, and energies of others. It will look at all different ways for all different highly sensitives. For example, being in large crowds can be extremely overstimulating and being in loud environments.
Does that make you more empathetic?
That is where the HSE shadows and the HSE strengths that I’ve identified come into play. When you are reacting to the input of your nervous system from a shadow perspective, then you are most likely going to be experiencing one of the most common HSE shadows, which is overwhelm. Someone who is highly sensitive will absolutely tend to overwhelm at a much higher degree than someone who is not highly sensitive. Being self-employed is a very stimulating career and process. A highly sensitive entrepreneur will be dealing with overwhelm very frequently.
Is this about perception and how we see things and hear things? Do you tie it into perception?
When you say perception, are you talking about how an individual interprets the stimulation?
Right, and being able to see the unseen and being able to know the unknown. It’s having that gut feeling that goes beyond.
For sure, yes and when you are operating from a strength perspective, when you learn how to do that, which is so much of what I provide in the training in my work, then you are able to access HSE strengths such as intuition, such as empathy as you mentioned, such as the ability to be a deep listener, a deep thinker, a deep feeler and other strengths. It becomes about learning how to interpret the stimulation so that you are in a space of being able to respond rather than react.
This has got to bring a lot of challenges though if you’re overstimulated by things. You could have advantages when we’re talking about empathy and some of these other issues. What are the biggest challenges of working with people who have this?
Back to those shadows. Absolutely again, overwhelm. I would say two of the other top shadows that I’ve identified are over-responsibility and overprotection. Then from there, whether it’s those top three shadows or any of the other twelve shadows. What I’ve also identified is that shadow behavior tends to throw HSEs into what I term the HSE coping cycle, which speaks to three primary coping mechanisms. The coping mechanism of pushing, coping mechanism of hiding and coping mechanism of combo plattering, which means that you go back and forth between those two. All of those aspects of shadow and coping are a very difficult place to run a business from. As a highly sensitive, could you make it through your life being able to cope and be satisfied at a basic self-preservation level? Absolutely yes for sure. As an HSE and as someone who feels called to be self-employed, it’s imperative that you learn how to shift from the shadow behavior into your strengths. It’s imperative that you learn how to shift out of coping mechanisms and out of the coping cycle and into the ability to create.Your ideal client is a version of you. Click To Tweet
How do you make that shift?
That’s so much of where the in-depth of my training comes from. One of the key pieces that I consistently speak to in my teaching is the process of transformation and going through stages of first awareness. Just being aware like, “I have this shadow tendencies. I have this coping mechanism that kicks in,” into then understanding, which is more of an intellectual and conceptual ability to understand what’s happening with your nervous system and habitual reactions. Then where the real work comes in, which is so much of what my mentoring programs are about, which is to shift from understanding into knowing where there’s an embodiment. There’s literally a transformation that occurs. How you previously reacted, having gone through awareness and understanding and the process and to knowing, you are then more able to literally respond differently rather than that habitual reaction. It’s a process.
It seems counter-intuitive for somebody to want to be an entrepreneur if they’re highly sensitive. Did they go together? Why would they even want to do it?
Is that the ultimate question or what? It really is. What I say and speak to those HSEs that I serve is that for those of us who do feel called to be self-employed, it is a calling.
You said all those women were in the room. Why were so many people positive in that room? You said it’s normally 20% of the global population. Why were so many of the women in that one room so sensitive? Why was it different?
My theory is like I said, one of my foundational principle training is that your ideal client is a version of you, even you not knowing that I was highly sensitive, I’m going to attract others who are highly sensitive. That’s the first part. The second part, which definitely my work since then, which is almost ten years of research and developing the great body of work that I’ve developed goes back to that calling. HSEs are service-based businesses. That is what they’re drawn to. The connection that I’ve made with Dr. Elaine Aron’s research is that how she speaks to those of us who are highly sensitive is that we are brought here to this world to be what she refers to as the royal advisers of society.
We’re brought here to bring balance to what she also refers to as the warrior kings and queens. In her writing, which was in the ‘90s, before so much exploded in regards to both internet as a medium of communication as well as an explosion in the Western world of acceptance of more of a healing arts approach. In her work, she would say that we’ve been brought here to be the teachers, lawyers, researchers, practitioners. In my work, because the shift and what’s happened in our global culture since the ‘90s, we as HSEs are the ones who are drawn to have a business as a massage therapist, a Reiki practitioner, a nutritionist or a lawyer.
One of the things I will say is that over the years of doing this work, I’ve watched those who are members in my mentoring programs shift from more of the touchy-feely coaches, healing practitioners, and creative into those who are in more traditional service-based businesses. We have in our community dentists, insurance brokers, real estate agents and accountants. There are HSEs who are still in service-based businesses but again more in a traditional business. When they learn how to use their highly sensitive nature to work for them, then they have that much more success that they’re able to experience as that real estate agent, dentist, coach, creative or whatever the service-based business they might be called to fulfill.
I imagine the anxiety level is high in people who are overstimulated like this. Do you deal with any meditative type of things? I know mindfulness is so big right now. You mentioned the course that you offer, A Course in Business Miracles. Is that part of that or is that something that they should do on their own?
Absolutely not on their own. My work is what I refer to as an inner and outer approach. It’s necessary that when you are looking at what’s needed to be a successful HSE, you are constantly giving attention to both the inner work and the outer work. They go hand-in-hand for those of us who are highly sensitive. For that inner work, what I teach is something that I refer to as energy management. It takes something such as meditation or mindfulness which is very powerful and effective to another degree or another level for those of us who are HSE. The energy management that I teach is tactile.
It’s about being able to work with tools that are tangible. Also, you can be able to literally track your progress. Something like meditation is very powerful. Mindful movement is something that’s part of the two training retreats that I offer in person. That’s two times a year, spring and fall, as part of the mentoring programs and learning how to use specific tools that have you taking pen to paper and tracking things like your beliefs. Tracking things like how you want to set your energy for the day. Tracking things like how you’re going to take the ball of confusion and overwhelm that might be in your mind.
Putting it through one of the energy management tools on paper that will help you gain clarity is very important so that we’re creating that bridge between the inner world and the outer world, which is very necessary as an HSE. When we’re only in that inner world, we can be very satisfied there as a highly sensitive, to live only in our inner world. Most of us who are highly sensitive, meditate and journal happily all day. You have to be able to market. You have to be able to sell. You have to be able to organize operations so that the business is running and that it’s creating the income flow that it’s meant to create. You are supported and able to continue to be out in the world offering the service that you’re so coded to offer in whatever way you’re serving from that royal advisor position.
I’m interested in knowing what percentage, if you even know these numbers, are men versus women or introverts versus extroverts. Do you have any of that information?
I don’t have specifics in terms of that.
How about in your training courses? Do you have more women than men?Work with tools that are tangible so you can literally track your progress. Click To Tweet
That I can speak to. The majority are women. Although we often have a few special men in our mentoring programs. I haven’t done any official research, but my sense is the reason why is because it’s already a hurdle to accept yourself and embrace yourself as a person who’s highly sensitive culturally being male. On top of that, it’s a much higher hurdle. In terms of introverts, I personally don’t have any specific calculated tracked research. I can say in terms of those who are in the Business Miracles community and mentoring programs, you’re not always an introvert because you’re highly sensitive. One does not necessarily always go with each other.
It’s interesting because introverts are obviously energized more when they’re away from people that they have to get away from. I could see that might be something that could be a correlation if they ever studied it. What you’ve done has been interesting. I know you’ve appeared on Lifetime television and you’ve been published and book alongside people like Deepak Chopra. This is a very unique conversation. A lot of people will probably be interested to know more about your course and how they can find out what you’re doing. Is there a way that you can share links or how can they reach you?
If as you’ve been reading this, you have a sense of, “That just might be me or I’d like to see if that is me,” I would recommend that you take the quiz and the assessment that I’ve developed as an extension of Dr. Aron’s assessment. You can find that at www.HSEQuiz.com. Once you take that assessment, you will find out if you are either somewhat of a highly sensitive entrepreneur or a super highly sensitive entrepreneur or if you’re like me and you are a super uber highly sensitive entrepreneur. Wherever you might fall on that spectrum after you take the assessment, you’ll receive a free HSE success guide, which will give you the first steps to begin to work with. That will support you in learning how to work with this aspect of yourself wherever you fall on the spectrum.
That’s great that people can get that information just from doing the assessment, to begin with, just to find out more about it. I appreciate you offering that to everybody here. It was so interesting to hear about this, Heather. I love anything to do with assessments and personality and all this stuff falls right into my wheelhouse. Thank you for being on the show.
Thank you. I appreciate it.
- Dr. Froswa’ Booker-Drew
- HERitage Giving Fund
- Immunity to Change
- Ready for a Revolution: 30 Days to Jolt Your Life
- Rules of Engagement: Making Connections Last
- Texas Women’s Foundation
- Daniel Goleman – Previous episode
- Ellen Langer – Previous episode
- Melissa Agnes – Previous episode
- Business Woman Media
- Heather Dominick
- A Course in Business Miracles
- The Highly Sensitive Person
About Dr. Froswa’ Booker-Drew
Froswa’ Booker-Drew, Ph.D. is a Network Weaver who believes relationships are the key to our personal, professional and organizational growth. She has been quoted in Forbes, Ozy, Bustle, Huffington Post, and other media outlets, due to an extensive background in leadership, nonprofit management, partnership development, training and education. She is currently the Director of Community Affairs for the State Fair of Texas. Formerly the National Community Engagement Director for World Vision, she served as a catalyst, partnership broker, and builder of the capacity of local partners in multiple locations across the US to improve and sustain the well-being of children and their families.
About Heather Dominick
Heather Dominick is a woman who is impressively successful, and highly spiritual. A former high school drama teacher who collaborated with none other than Bette Midler. A graduate of NYU where she received her first coach training. Heather is the winner of the 2015 Best of Manhattan Coaching Award and creator of the 2014Award-winning winning virtual event A Course In Business Miracles®: 21-Day Discovery Series that attracted close to 6,000 official registrants from all around the world including: Iceland, Nigeria, Russia, Asia, South America, Australia, Europe and the U.S.
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