On Monday’s episode, I talked to the “Genius Guru” Gina Marotta, about how to find the kind of work that you were truly born to do, based on her inspirational personal story of transformation. Today, Gina is back for our first ever Q&A, which takes some common career-oriented questions that many people have, and offers some very unique insight based on cultivating your own personal genius. Topics we touch on include:

-The main thing that prevents people from discovering their genius
-Important advice she has for the younger generations - based on what she’s learned from working with clients in their 30’s, 40’s and 50’s
-Why you should be careful about the kind of person you get your advice from
-What to do when you suspect you’re being harassed in the workplace
-How and when to ask for a raise
-How to create your own promotion
-How to know when it’s time to move on
-Moving On Vs. Quitting - how to let go without labeling
-How you can actually manifest serious illnesses by lingering in a situation that is not right for you

And More!

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"You deserve the life you really want, and if this isn’t it, keep looking…”

Gina Marotta was once a rising star as a lawyer, working on the all the most high-profile cases in Chicago, each case like an episode of “Law & Order.” But despite rapid success and what seemed like a natural gift, something was off. There was a reason why she found herself crying in the shower in the fetal position one morning, just unable to go to work. What Gina didn’t know at the time was that this unhappiness would serve as the very catalyst for an incredible journey of self-discovery and transformation. Also known as “The Genius Guru,” her life’s new mission is to help others discover and hone their true talents and passions, and she’s here today to share her story.

Highlights from this episode:
-Gina’s first career choice, and how she realized it wasn’t for her
-The surprising way her career as a lawyer materialized and, despite a great deal of success, something still wasn’t right in her life...
-DID YOU KNOW that Jim Carrey’s father was just as funny as he was, but didn’t believe he could make a career for himself in comedy?
-The word SHOULD - all the reason why Gina hates this word, and has eliminated it from her vocabulary
-“What do I really want?” - How to ask yourself this question, and more importantly - how to answer it
-How to find a “Transition Role” for get yourself through a major life or career change
-How tapping into your “inner genius” can change your life
-Gina’s top three questions for discovering your genius (this is a really fun exercise!)
-The massage therapy business she started at 7 YEARS OLD (no joke!). And how that helped inform who she is today...

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Just about everyone I know these days, both inside and outside of the therapy room, seem to be struggling with some sort of estrangement or disconnection within their family.  I've seen these situations manifest between people and their parents, grandparents, siblings, cousins, close friends, you name it.  Today, I'd like to take some time to explore this issue a bit with what I believe is ultimately the root cause of these types of conflicts, as well as my top piece of advice for navigating life when your family relationship aren't as strong as you'd like them to be.
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As a promising college student with an apparent bright future ahead of him, Stuart’s life looked great on paper.  But on the inside, Stuart was struggling with lots of negativity, and before he knew it, everything had spiraled out of control.  Negativity can be a vicious seed of self-destruction if left unresolved; it’s like purposely planting weeds in your backyard, only to get angry and wonder how the whole garden got so ugly.  But with Stuart’s story comes a great upside, as you can truly create great change in your life and design your own fate if you’re willing to listen to things that your body and mind are telling you, and embrace the “process” of creating a happy life.
  
Some highlights from this episode include:
-How he started having negative thoughts, and the ripple effect it had on it’s life...
-Some of the advice he received about his problem - acknowledgement of struggle vs. “snap out of it” mentality
-Why he specifically chose to NOT give his problem a label, whether it be depression, anxiety, negativity, etc.
-The power of simply deciding to manifest change in your life, and how Stuart went about this
-How Stuart’s second round of battling negativity came back into his life, and how he decided to make some even bigger changes 
-The Blank Page Effect - what is this, and how can you use it to find meaning, excitement, and direction in your life
-The importance of employing the proper mindset during periods of transition and change

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Today’s episode is with Kelley Kitley, a friend of mine and fellow local clinician here in Chicago.  We discuss a variety of topics, mainly detailing the several instances of adversity she’s battled throughout the course of both her youth and adulthood, and how she’s used each one of these to define her life’s purpose, and help as many people as can. 
In this episode, we cover:
-Growing up with an eating disorder, and how it was hidden from a significant family member
-The practices she undertook to recover from her eating disorder
-Her struggles with alcohol throughout her adult life
-The sexual assault she experienced, and how all of these adversities combined help shape her career as a clinician 
-Her #1 piece of advice for both life, and overcoming any adversity
-Her most recent challenge - getting her autobiography published, and persevering through many, many rejections
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Today’s guest is Mark, who is a long-time personal friend of mine, and also one of the most upbeat, positive guys I know.  This episode is going to focus on his amazing life story, and how all the things that happened to him - both good and bad - ultimately created who he is today.  Mark is not only a great role model for both kids and parents, but a testament to the idea that you can truly create your own happiness based on how you perceive things.

In this episode, we cover:

-The best therapy Mark has ever encountered (and why ultimately it’s a double-edged sword!)
-A traumatic event Mark witnessed when he was young, and how he coped with it
-How his mother took in abused women during his youth, and how that helped shape him as a person
-How growing up without a lot of money led to a lot of great things in his life - like running a food pantry
-Mark’s “taking care of everyone” approach to life vs. just taking care of yourself
-How being a minority throughout school made him a stronger person
-Marks #1 tip for raising really great kids (and it will surprise you!)

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Part TWO of Michael's story continues here. Where we left off in part one, Michael had just been taken out of college after venturing down the wrong path. Now, he shares his incredible story about his recovery process, the lessons he learned as a result of his struggles, and how the overall experience has made him even closer with his family in some ways. Be sure to check it out!

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TWO episodes today, both with Michael, who shares his story about his college experience which saw him get a little carried away with the use of marijuana and alcohol. Michael is open and honest enough to share just about everything with us, including how he got started, how it affected his college life, and ultimately what happened and what he learned as a result. Be sure to check out both parts!

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Today's guest is Kathleen, returning to the podcast for a second time. Last time she was here, we talked how she copes with her anxiety and depression on a day-to-day basis, and today we're going to not only get an update from her, but dive a little deeper into the coping process, and how she's recently turned to writing as a way to express herself.

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Today's guest is Samantha, who is here to talk about her college experience, and the events that led to her decision to eventually seek out therapy as a means of obtaining better mental health & wellness. Our conversation hits a lot of interesting notes, including some common misconceptions of what the therapy process is actually like, and why it's okay to simply allow things to just "suck" for a little while. Very insightful episode!

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