Embracing Neurodiversity and Prioritizing Self-Care in the Workplace with Katherin McCord

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[00:00:00] Yvonne Heimann: Hey, hey, everybody. And welcome back to another episode of Boss Your Business. We already had a couple of good laughs in the green room, so you better stick around because this is going to be a fun episode and we are diving back into neurodiversity there. We already got the first tongue twist out of the way, so you know, it's going to be an amazing episode.

[00:00:22] And today my guest is Katherine McCord. You are coming in from, this downward of neurodiversity of inclusivity. So I'm really excited to have you today to introduce you, from being the little girl who sold shares in her company and played HR, by the way, who plays HR, we're going to have to talk about that.

[00:00:45] Katherine McCord: We will, we will talk about that. I will explain your mom. I did at six years old. I was six. I was six. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

[00:00:59] Yvonne Heimann: When I can't [00:01:00] even get through the first sentence of the bio, you know, this is going to be a

[00:01:03] freaking amazing episode.

[00:01:06] You then turn to the traveling people operations entrepreneur, an international speaker that you are now.

[00:01:12] Katherine has had quite the journey. She has multiple physical and neurodiversities ranging from MCAS and seizures to bipolar and OCD. And you say, I'm successful with my diagnose, not in spite of it. Whether it is revolutionizing HR tech, innovate, innovating DEI. Recruiting, and HR clients or being the founder of the Neuroverse, a not for profit organization dedicated to building inclusion and elevating neurodiversity.

[00:01:44] You are always bringing everything back to your three missions. Integrity, inclusion, and innovation. Welcome to the podcast.

[00:01:55] Katherine McCord: Thank you. I'm so excited to be here. I love, I love the shows that will just let my mouth [00:02:00] fly. And I, I do love that you brought up that I fired my mother when I was six and, and I've had people that were really worried about how she felt about that.

[00:02:08] So I want to let everyone know that she was thrilled. So my mother, my mother is an HR professional whose nickname is the Terminator because she loves to fire people, not layoffs. Layoffs suck. Nobody likes that. But firing the people that really earned it. We love it. Both of us. And so she knew from the age of six that I was just like her.

[00:02:34] She was very thrilled about it. So just rest assured.

[00:02:37] Yvonne Heimann: I love the whole phrasing around it because we know those people that have earned being fired. Yeah, we, we, we had those people

[00:02:48] Katherine McCord: that just suck. Yeah. The, the jerk, the jerk is source, right? That's, that's who it is.

[00:02:53] Yvonne Heimann: Even, even in a small solopreneur business with just some part time people, [00:03:00] you're going to run into this sooner or later with where it's like those different levels of, oh, hell yeah, you, you earned that to the, and now we are just not getting along.

[00:03:13] Like, interestingly enough. One of one of my best team members. I love her to pieces. I literally fired her three times

[00:03:22] Katherine McCord: Yeah,

[00:03:22] Yvonne Heimann: I mean I fired her three times through our relationship. We always, we always talk. She knew why I fired her and she had to do her own growing

[00:03:31] Katherine McCord: but you, but do you know what though? Do you know what I hear out of that?

[00:03:34] Is that you, you practice something that I think is beautiful and very much underused in business, which is forgiveness. And we don't use that a lot. No, it's not about that. It's just sometimes it's just, they're not where they need to be. I've rehired people. It happens, you know, and, and, but the people that just earn it, I thoroughly enjoy firing them.

[00:03:57] It is, in fact, I had to practice, I don't [00:04:00] know if anybody watching has ever seen the show Modern Family, but there's an episode where Claire, is trying to tell, talk to her son about death, and she keeps smiling like a weirdo, and that's me when I fire people. I had to practice not grinning like the Joker, like, not being, they're like, Today's your last day.

[00:04:21] I love it. I love it. I'm like, yes, I'm getting rid of this toxic person. And we're going to have this great, you know, it's going to make things so much better. And you just suck. And it's probably something I'm already tired of dealing with at that point. You know, it's just like, just get out.

[00:04:34] Yvonne Heimann: And I think that's, that's when we initially hear enjoying firing somebody.

[00:04:39] I think that's the piece we are forgetting about. Right. How some people just don't fit our goals. Don't fit our personality. Don't, don't fit that whole energy that we want to create. And if you are just simply being a fucking asshole,

[00:04:57] Katherine McCord: Yeah

[00:04:58] Yvonne Heimann: you, you are [00:05:00] dragging everybody else.

[00:05:01] Katherine McCord: And look, if it's just not a fit, because whatever, that's different.

[00:05:04] I consider that more like a layoff. And then I like help them find another job first. Like we figure it out, you know? Right. Like I work with them on that. But when you just are a jerk, or you're just trying, like I actually had to fire somebody not all that long ago who purposefully tanked someone else's career in the company.

[00:05:24] I mean, and admitted to it to other people, like it was, it was documented, and even admitted to it in the firing. Jerkasaurus, that's what it is, it was just rude. It was just rude. And so I'm like, no, you got to go. This is not an acceptable thing. So, so it just kind of, you know, like I said, layoffs are never fun.

[00:05:43] No one wants to do that when you didn't earn it. And it's like a budget thing or something. That sucks. Nobody wants to do that. But, but when you did earn it. I thoroughly enjoy it.

[00:05:52] And it was my mother was so proud because not only did I fire her at the age of six years old 23 years later [00:06:00] after that I earned her nickname as well. It was also deemed the terminator and she was very happy on that day and It's been, it's been great. But yeah, so I was literally, my parents were amazing. I had amazing parents, or have, I shouldn't talk about them like they're gone. I have amazing parents and they took me to work with them all the time.

[00:06:18] Both of my parents, my father who is a musician and an educator, and my mother who is an HR professional and eventually an executive. And so I grew up for the time I was, I mean, we're talking little bitty, like three years old, around the world of work. And I spent that time and I learned and that just, You know, grew my little mind in a very specific way so that I was always very business minded, always kind of have that sense of professionalism.

[00:06:43] And I lived for being at work. And I think it's because I, even to this day, I'm happy when I'm working. And I think it's because there's a part of my brain that's like, this is playtime. Like this is, this is the good stuff. This is, you know, you get to be with mommy and daddy and you get to play. I think that [00:07:00] that's still in there.

[00:07:01] It's so like my brain has just decided that work is the positive input. So I've always,

[00:07:07] Yvonne Heimann: Because often enough, it's like that those early childhoods, those upbringings often bring programming and limiting beliefs that we don't want. I'm like, our parents are just humans, right? Let's be honest. We all make mistakes, shit happens.

[00:07:25] That's just what it is. But having, hearing your story and seeing how this can also be completely the other way around where it's like. Oh, yeah, this is fun. This is playtime. I love that.

[00:07:44] Katherine McCord: It was great, and they kind of did the same thing with the neurodiversity stuff. Like, they figured out from the time I was about Four years old.

[00:07:52] I think that I was obsessed. I have obsessive compulsive tendencies and they just steered into it. They were like, all right, cool. That's what your [00:08:00] brain does. All right, let's work with it. And they figured out ways to teach me how to be happy with that and how to accommodate it and how to turn it into something healthy.

[00:08:10] Rather than something unhealthy and then when those unhealthy aspects came up how to manage that and how to take care of it. And so I was just raised this way. That's just that was just my life. That was just part of my existence. And then when I got older and more things came up right and more things kind of took over then my body just started falling apart.

[00:08:31] I mean, it's flippin ridiculous my body, it acts like it's 80 years old and it has since I was in my early 20s. It's very disrespectful. Like I had, I had an insurance company one time call me thinking that they had my age wrong because there was no way that someone in their 20s could have all of these, it was hilarious.

[00:08:50] They literally called me and were like, we have your age wrong. We're so sorry. And then they felt even worse when they didn't have my age wrong. And it was, it's fine, like, it's [00:09:00] not a big deal, it's just stuff that, some of it's stuff that sounds more dramatic than it actually is, but it's, my body just started falling apart, but these kind of resources that I had to take care of myself and that mentality of working with myself, not against myself, made such a difference in my life.

[00:09:18] Yvonne Heimann: So if I, if I may ask, quote, your body falling apart, how, how does that manifest? Just so the audience can kind of like, wrap their head a little bit around, how it shows up in your everyday.

[00:09:32] Katherine McCord: Yeah, I don't know. That's fine. So in and some of the things are there every day and some of them are not some of them are only there sometimes so I I gosh, I'm not gonna go down the whole list.

[00:09:42] Okay, but the bigger diagnosis the bigger more prevalent diagnoses. I I do have an arrhythmia. My heart does not it might tell people my heart does its own drum solos That's how I choose to look at it. You know, it's just in there doing its whole little thing playing drummer boy and then I have, so that can cause fatigue. And [00:10:00] that can cause some dizziness, lightheadedness, seeing some color spots occasionally if my oxygen gets low, which talking about oxygen, COVID left me with COPD.

[00:10:09] So I can't breathe for crud anymore. Thank you COVID. I am fully vaccinated for anyone who's concerned and I have MCAS, which basically my body will create an anaphylactic response to the most random flippin things like just going outside on a superhuman day and breathing in and my body is like, No, no, we're not.

[00:10:28] It's okay. Calm down. And we're like certain textures, perfumes. I mean, it's, it's just bonkers. And then I have, and I have a seizure disorder, which is interesting. So it evolved from having many strokes into seizures. Because many strokes apparently weren't quite interesting enough. So then we just evolved.

[00:10:45] Yvonne Heimann: It wasn't enough sparkle in your life.

[00:10:51] Katherine McCord: It wasn't. It was like, okay, we need to be more flashy with it. That's what my friend said, like my friends in theater. And she's like, she's like, yeah, this is like your jazz hands. Your, your body was like, okay, this is just [00:11:00] interesting enough. Like we gotta be fucked up in a cool way. All right, we gotta do this other thing.

[00:11:04] So now, I have, what's called vocal seizures are on the left side of my body. I am aware, but they, but they still hurt. I can't really respond. So on and so forth. And sometimes it's a full seizure, and other times it's like little facial tics. So it will look like I'm trying to pick somebody up for a date, or I'm like doing like little Michael Jackson moves, like You know, like getting my thriller on over here.

[00:11:28] It is, it's so ridiculous. I'm trying to get a speech or something and it's, my body's just going off. But that also ties back to the neurodiversity because then that changes your neural pathways, how you think, how you function and the seizures do suck. Like, I don't want to downplay that. The seizures do suck.

[00:11:45] They really do, but it's not all the time. Right. And I use CBD to, to manage that. And then I have, I have bipolar one. I have obsessive compulsive disorder and I have misophonia, which is basically [00:12:00] means that certain sounds create a negative neuro response in my brain. So it's not just I don't like it.

[00:12:04] It's like my brain, I get pain and like frustration. I get real agitated. I have, I don't do it, but I have the urge to punch people in the face.

[00:12:13] Yvonne Heimann: Oh my God. Yes. And I have people that don't believe me in this. I'm like, there is certain tones, there is certain ways where I literally physically get angry, I get the whole stomach stuff going on.

[00:12:27] Katherine McCord: That's called misophonia. That's a real diagnosis. I'm like, like it's real, I'm telling you. Yeah, it actually creates a negative neuropathway. And it's funny because

[00:12:39] Yvonne Heimann: I literally had that like five minutes before we started, before you popped into record. Because, okay, we are not taking this into an angry podcast right now, but yes, I actually physically know.

[00:12:52] Katherine McCord: I'm sorry. I'm sorry. Because I know what that feels like. It is very agitating and it's stuff you can't help. Like one of the sounds that gets me [00:13:00] is like a child breastfeeding. And so like if I'm in public, first of all, I fully support public breastfeeding, like totally down support. Everybody's right. I just can't stand hearing it.

[00:13:09] I can't. It is funny. It is funny. It is. It's okay to laugh. I don't care, but like this, but I can't hear it. It's just like, I'm like, yeah, like I will actually like malfunction. I'm like, no, no, no, no, no, no. Same thing with the sound of kissing. I can't, I can't stand the sound like in a movie or, and I'm like, no, no, no, no, no, no.

[00:13:30] It has to be muted. Doing it myself is fine. That's fine. I can't stand the sound of other people doing it.

[00:13:37] Yvonne Heimann: Because you are actively involved.

[00:13:39] Katherine McCord: I guess. I guess. Yeah. I guess. I don't know. I don't know. But it's bad. I cannot stand that sound. And actually, it's funny because a lot of people will make the mistake because of certain different ways that my neurodiversity compliment each other and come together, will think that I have autism, which is fine.

[00:13:58] Like I'm not insulted by that, but they'll [00:14:00] make the mistake of thinking I have autism because of how certain things kind of piece together, including the misaphonia. And I'm like, no, I get why you think that, but I'm missing key elements for that diagnosis. So that, that's not it, but thank you.

[00:14:12] Like thank you for, for the thought and all that. But I, I love neurodiversity and, and it's cool because finally, finally science is catching up to what so many of us already knew, which is that it's not a deficit. It's, it's got disability associated with it, but there are also proven benefits like Johns Hopkins has put out studies.

[00:14:34] Psychology today has released a few cool things. The National Library of Medicine, National Institute of Health, even Hewlett freaking Packard has done a great study and has a beautiful inclusion program around, around neurodiversity. And so it's this, it's this interesting kind of dynamic of compensating or accommodating disability, but then also, you know, exalting the benefits of it and kind of [00:15:00] learning to balance all that out, especially in the workplace.

[00:15:01] It's really interesting.

[00:15:02] Yvonne Heimann: What it, what it is for me and It's been, that's how I have looked at it back in the day when neurodiversity wasn't a word yet. I'm like, how old was I? I was dating him when I was 18, 19, probably, and dyslexia. And at school they gave him the runaround, but when it came to numbers and math, he was a freaking genius.

[00:15:32] And how I look at it is, yeah. We might be struggling with certain areas because of how our brain function, how it fires. But that usually means our brain is somewhere else freaking amazing around.

[00:15:48] Katherine McCord: Yeah, doing other things over here. Yeah, exactly. And that's exactly it. And so I've had employers say, well, what do I do with that?

[00:15:55] You know, somebody's real strong over here, weak over here. And one of my top solutions for that is [00:16:00] symbiotic work cells, which I think is something we ought to be doing anyway. And that's where you get several people. And you have them all come together to handle like all of the work put together. So they take the work for those three or four positions, right?

[00:16:14] You don't really want to make the cell bigger than three or four people, but you, you bring them all together and they all handle that workload together and they compliment each other and learn from each other and grow from each other. And it's the most perfect solution. And it actually creates a far more effective. Work body, by the way.

[00:16:31] and then you have everybody's eye and everybody's different strength. And it's, it's amazing. It's amazing. It's, it's a really cool result.

[00:16:39] Yvonne Heimann: Everybody listening. You haven't seen my faces that I was just making because I didn't have a word for it. But literally what you just described is my content team.

[00:16:50] Oh, I love that you describing that. And it's like. We have found that symbiosis [00:17:00] of, of Kitty, Layla, and Jeremy with all of their specific strength and my right hand Kitty has done well of saying no for the team. Layla and Jeremy, they are, they are quite quiet behind the scenes. They get the things done that they are best at.

[00:17:18] Kitty is the one that mostly talks to me and get things done. And she's like, this doesn't line up, this doesn't match. So she is kind of like the, the, the leader and it's like, when you started to, to describe this and I'm like, this is what we did without even thinking about it,

[00:17:38] Katherine McCord: because it works, it makes sense.

[00:17:41] Yvonne Heimann: And it's like, I'm, I'm going after people's strengths, not just the strength, but also their passion. What lights them up? Yes. They love doing. Yeah. I get the best out of them. It's, it's an egotistical choice. If you love what you're doing, I'm getting the best results. Why wouldn't I do that?

[00:17:57] Katherine McCord: Yeah, exactly.

[00:17:58] But people don't think like that. We've been taught that [00:18:00] everyone has to completely own their job and it has to be one person doing one job and one workload and that's just it. Fuck that. It makes no sense. It makes no sense. Symbiotic work cells. And it's not that they have to all do everything together.

[00:18:13] That's not it. You know, I mean they take little pieces and they each do their thing and, but it works. And also the other cool thing that happens with that is that within when somebody's out, these people are already naturally doing the work. There is no picking it up. There is no, no, no. It just keeps going.

[00:18:28] Because it's okay. They already all know what's up and what's happening. And it's okay because they already are a team. They're a cell, right? So just creating that, that strength that comes together, that's so strong and people, people get real funny about this one too until I kind of explain it.

[00:18:45] The other one I tell people is we need to stop, stop with the accommodations at work and just turn them into standard options.

[00:18:55] That it shouldn't be this stupid process for [00:19:00] people to get things that will help them work more effectively, more efficiently, and more, in a more healthy manner. That makes no sense. That's stupid. And especially when the Department of Labor says that 54 percent of accommodations are free, why are we making people jump through hoops for them?

[00:19:14] Why are we shaming people about them? Why are we making them feel othered or weird or bad for asking for something that's going to make them work better?

[00:19:22] Yvonne Heimann: And it's like, let's be honest, none of us is normal.

[00:19:29] Katherine McCord: No! Everybody's got their thing. Everybody. And at some point, the majority of the population will need some form of accommodation, whether it's temporary or long term.

[00:19:36] And that can be glasses, it can be an ergonomic mouse, it can be noise canceling headphones, it can be preferring having camera off meetings for whatever reason. I mean, you could need an accommodation because you broke your ankle. I don't know, you know, we all get older. We all lose our hearing. I mean, it's already happening to me.

[00:19:54] It's not funny. And, and, you know, it's just we all can benefit from these types of things. [00:20:00] So learning to naturally take care of our team just makes sense. Again, so what I tell people is I'm like from the interview process on through have a list of standard accommodations. That you already offer that you're already, you know, have connections to the vendor or whatever it is.

[00:20:17] There's two reasons for that. Number one, cause it shows people you actually do care and you actually are as opposed to,

[00:20:24] Yvonne Heimann: Hey, Hey, tell me what you need. No, we already have some. Yeah, we've got you. If you would like to add to that.

[00:20:31] Katherine McCord: Yeah. Oh, yeah. And you always have a fill in the blank, always have a fill in the blank because you just never know, but have the standard accommodations because it shows them that you put your money where your mouth is and that you're not going to discriminate against them, that it's not a way to like trick them into telling you something that then you're going to discriminate against them because trust me, everybody's experienced that.

[00:20:47] That's in the disability community or in the neurodiverse community. And then the other thing that it does is it helps them because tragically, Okay. A lot of people did not have the upbringing that I [00:21:00] did and so a lot of people have not been taught to take care of themselves. They don't know. Even their own doctors have not taught them to take care of themselves properly.

[00:21:08] So when you, when you put that out there and people go, Oh my gosh, I could totally use that. That'll make me more comfortable. Great. You know, and you're helping them.

[00:21:20] Yvonne Heimann: What I have realized, and it's been interesting with people that I work with, and in general, I'm an open book. I'm like, it's always funny to see some people where it's like, you

[00:21:30] don't have an open book. I'm like, no. I don't it's like I'm an open book. You ask me a question. You're gonna get the answer. So be careful what you ask.

[00:21:37] Katherine McCord: Yeah, hope you really wanted it. Good luck

[00:21:40] Yvonne Heimann: And it's been, it's been interesting seeing the progression in my team in general. When I work with people no matter if full time or part time something that I often hear is like Oh, really? You just did that? Because my video editor needed, needed a subscription [00:22:00] to some, some music for the videos or somebody got sick and they are a day behind. And I'm like, we are not doing neurosurgery. It's fine. Yeah, I got it. I got it. or me openly right at the beginning of December, I hit, I hit a meltdown, meltdown, burnout, whatever you want to call it.

[00:22:19] It was just so many things finalized. And that anxiety of getting my citizenship, of getting the book out, all of that high energy anxiety. And I was down, I was down. I told my team, I'm like, guys, I'm burned out. I'm at my end. We are taking December off. I don't even care what's going out. We are back in January.

[00:22:41] We are refocusing. I'm, and, and just being open and honest with them, what's happening on my side here, because we are all virtual gives them also that, that permission slip of I'm having a crappy day. I'm bowing out. I'll see you [00:23:00] tomorrow. Yes.

[00:23:00] Katherine McCord: And sometimes we just need mental health days. 100%. I've always told my teams since I, the first time I was a manager, if you're just having that day where you're like, not today, then that's okay.

[00:23:13] Go take a break because some days it's just not going to happen. It could be that so much is built up for you. It could just be that your hormones are that day. And then on top of that, somebody would rude you the second you came in and you're just like, nope, you know, it could, it could be a variety of things.

[00:23:29] I had one, one of my employees came in one morning and this woman was always like beautifully, like beautifully dressed, elegant, smart, articulate. Comes in and she goes. And she looked ratchet. Okay. I would, I say, I mean, this woman, it did not look good. Like, I don't, it looked like she stuck her finger in a light sock, got hit by a car, and then had mud thrown on her.

[00:23:51] Like, it was bad.

[00:23:52] Yvonne Heimann: Oh, it's obvious. It's complete obvious.

[00:23:55] Katherine McCord: Yeah, it was, it was obvious. Her hair was not right. No, no, her hair was not right. [00:24:00] This woman comes into me. And she's got like this drained look on her face and she's like I haven't slept in two days And she didn't even say hi. She just started it.

[00:24:09] She was I haven't slept in two days. And the wind was blowing and it messed up my hair and I'd forgotten to spray it And I feel sick and I started my period. And then my baby pooped on me like it came right out of the diaper and it pooped on me. That was the mud And then, she goes, and then I get her, I get her back, I get her to the daycare, and then she threw up on me!

[00:24:33] She's like, she's like, I don't like this day! Look what I said, so calm. Go home. I said, it's okay, honey. I said, just go home, crawl in bed, and just pretend it never happened, and we'll start all over, all over again tomorrow. She goes, okay. It was just like, it was so sad.

[00:24:55] Yvonne Heimann: The commitment, the [00:25:00] commitment to show up.

[00:25:02] Katherine McCord: I know, I was like, girl, and she goes, well you know I love you guys, but I just can't. She was trying because she just, she just loved the team and she did love her job. She genuinely loved being with us and all that, but she just loves her heart. And it just been a day and I was like, girl, next time, text me, don't come in here with your baby's poop on your dress.

[00:25:27] It was, it was so pitiful, but I was like, but it was such an important moment. And she told me later, she goes, you know, you're always open with us about your health and you're always open with us about this other, she goes. I just felt comfortable just being honest. And I was like, thank you. That was a great compliment.

[00:25:44] Thank you. That was a really beautiful moment. Kind of gross also, but it's okay. You know, but you do, you have to, you have to take care of the humans. That's it. Like it's, it's really that simple. And I am [00:26:00] excited to see that.

[00:26:01] Finally, finally, we are starting to really learn that and we're slowly catching on to what that means, but there are so many people that are still fighting it tooth and nail, they're just fighting it and part of it is, is that human beings have that natural ability, natural ego defense and that natural inherent self centeredness that we forget that our perception of reality and our vision, so to speak, you know, is all based on us and what we've experienced and what we've learned and how our bodies are and how our friends are and we forget that there's all this other stuff that happens that we are not the center of the universe.

[00:26:45] We forget, we know it, we know it, right?

[00:26:48] Yvonne Heimann: I'm the center of the universe, I don't know what you're talking about.

[00:26:51] Katherine McCord: All right, if nobody's ever told you, no, you're not, no, but it's, it's really like we, and we know it consciously, but we forget to [00:27:00] actually remember it, right? And to practice life accordingly.

[00:27:03] And then when people say things to us that are different from our experience, that ego defense kicks in, which is biological. This is a no shame, no blame comment because every single person has it. It's our brains need to be correct because that equals safety. And we start defending our position instead of listening and realizing that we're effing up and that we could be doing better.

[00:27:25] And so we need, we have to learn to break that ego mechanism, how to stop it in its tracks, which I do know how to do, by the way. So if anybody wants to learn, reach out to me, it's extremely simple. By the way, it's extremely simple to do this and stop that ego mechanism. And then you respond in curiosity, you respond with the question you start to learn from that person.

[00:27:42] And then that just becomes your habit. And then that's just how you communicate and then everything. Everything changes in your work life, your personal life, everything. It all changes and it's amazing. It's freaking amazing. You just get these whole new relationships and these whole new experiences and your [00:28:00] mind expands and you start to realize you're a lot less tense as a human.

[00:28:05] Because you've taught your, your body that new information and new stimuli and new things are not scary and that it's healthy and that it's happy. Yeah. And so then you have that positive association kind of like I have with going to work, you know, positive brain association. And so, teaching yourself this, this little habit, it takes a little bit of practice.

[00:28:25] It does. But once you get good at it, it's an astronomical evolution and change in yourself. And then your work product and then your company, because it grows and it grows and it grows.

[00:28:38] Yvonne Heimann: And I think part of that is also one of the things that, that I use often for myself, stepping into new things can trigger anxiety.

[00:28:48] However, we actually decide if it's anxiety or if it's excitement, because physically it feels the exact same way. So when I catch myself of this, Oh [00:29:00] my God, it's anxiety. I'm like, hold, stop. We are testing something new. I get to learn something new. I get to experience something new, something that hasn't done and changing my perception from this is full on anxiety.

[00:29:14] And don't get me wrong. I still have panic attacks at some points where my body just goes over. But in the everyday stepping out of your comfort zone and that, that low grade anxiety, I, I learned to flip the switch and I'm like, this is just excitement. This is something new that we haven't experienced before yet.

[00:29:33] And suddenly the whole flow, the whole experience changes.

[00:29:38] Katherine McCord: Absolutely. And that's part of that. And that's what I tell people all the time. I'm like, it's a quick. Like reality check slash grounding exercise of just telling your brain, no, we're safe. It's okay. And now we're excited about it, right? And now we're just, we're in this whole other, this whole other area, this whole other game plan.

[00:29:55] And people don't realize too, that we get addicted to these negative responses that happen in our [00:30:00] body. So the way addiction

[00:30:03] Yvonne Heimann: Uh huh. Yeah. Yeah. Oh, yeah. Full on guilty. The crap I watched on TV and then just not decided. I started realizing that I'm taking the drama and the BS on TV into my everyday life.

[00:30:18] Katherine McCord: Yep. Yep. And don't get me wrong, like, no judgment. Like, occasionally we just need that good trash TV. I get it. No judgment. But you have to be careful. Like, you do. Because this stuff, it's just like, I really love, because it's well written and I think it, it's, it teaches a lot. I like the show, Handmaid's Tale, but I have to be very careful when I watch it, how often I watch it.

[00:30:39] Like, and that's not a binging show for me. Because it's going to go real bad in my mind. So you, I have to kind of watch it in just particular stages and I'll have to watch my mental health when I'm, you know, going to watch it and stuff like that. But, you have to be careful with these kinds of things, but we do, we get addicted.

[00:30:56] So addiction is typically not the actual [00:31:00] chemical that we're taking in, but our body's response to it. So it can be that dopamine, that adrenaline, that serotonin. And that's more what we get addicted to typically now, not always, but typically. And so we actually get addicted to these fucked up responses that we let our body have Including the ego response.

[00:31:20] We're actually addicted to that. We're addicted to our own ego response. It is always in there telling us that we're right because it induces that fight or flight. It gives us that adrenaline rush. And it just oh, you know, it's just you know, you'll even hear people say like oh, it feels so good to just see it you know, to just go after somebody I'm like, yeah And

[00:31:39] Yvonne Heimann: it's it's it's interesting because I've been doing that cleanup when I started realizing addicted here. Don't get me wrong. If I've been so long in fight or flight, I didn't even know any difference. And it's interesting to see over time coming off of that, where suddenly I have a moment where [00:32:00] I'm like, Oh, look who fell back into the old programming. And I literally generated a situation to get back into that hit.

[00:32:10] And I'm like, Okay, we are back with it. It needs to get on the forefront again. We need to pay closer attention to this again because I don't want to get back to it.

[00:32:20] Katherine McCord: Right.

[00:32:20] Yvonne Heimann: Content and calm can actually be really nice. It doesn't always have to be drama. Yes,

[00:32:26] Katherine McCord: because it releases oxytocin, which is a happy bonding chemical that makes us feel healthy. That's a good chemical. That's one that we want a lot of.

[00:32:37] Yvonne Heimann: There's so much more we could talk about. Katherine, tell the audience, where can they dig deeper? Where can they find you? Where can they connect with you if they want to deep, deeper into this? And I have a feeling we will.

[00:32:49] Katherine McCord: LinkedIn, I'm always on there. Connect to me.

[00:32:53] I will talk to you. I promise. Just reach out, send me a message. I'm just trying to figure out TikTok, so I'm [00:33:00] on there too. It's @KattheHRTitan on there. and then you can find me on my speaker site at kathmccordspeaking.com or my professional site, which is titanmanagementusa.com. Any of those, reach out to me, connect with me.

[00:33:13] I'm always happy to talk to you. Come talk to you. Come talk to you at work, et cetera, et cetera. Whatever I could do to be of service. Please reach out. Even if it's a personal issue, reach out. I'm here.

[00:33:25] Yvonne Heimann: And as you guys know, all of the links will be in the description. I have a feeling we will be having Katherine on again pretty soon for another episode, because I could go for hours with you, right?

[00:33:37] Thank you so much for joining me so much fun.

[00:33:41] Katherine McCord: And it was a blast. Thank you.

[00:33:43] Yvonne Heimann: Thank you.

Embracing Neurodiversity and Prioritizing Self-Care in the Workplace with Katherin McCord
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