Mini Episode 4 Leah
Welcome to Out of Queeriosity, your Field Guide to Queer Pride. This is a production of Pride and Joy Foundation and I'm your host, Elena Joy pronouns, She her. You have found a bonus episode. Our theme this year is your voice, your power. We are using it to pursue our mission of preventing suicide and homelessness in our LGBTQ plus community by amplifying your voice and your power.
Our bonus episodes feature the voices of the most recent graduates of our keynote queers program. This is our eight week online course just for lgbtq plus participants to learn public speaking skills as well as the knowledge to build public speaking into an extra form of income. Whether our participants were pitching their own small business or upleveling their presentation skills for their corporate career, or just learning how to effectively move audiences to take action.
Our keynote queers gave a hell of a graduation presentation and we are here to share it with you. Can you even imagine squishing an entire keynote into just 10 minutes? This is considered expert level skills in the public speaking world. And it was our graduates capstone project Check back in the summer of 2023 to hear from another keynote queer graduate.
Now let's get to it. Our next keynote queer is Leah Embry pronouns she her. Leah is an lgbtq plus personal trainer, coach and advocate who takes pride in creating confidence in the human she meets worldwide. She empowers the queer community to find acceptance, confidence, and strength through weightlifting and transformative self-reflection.
Since 2004, her weightlifting experience has helped numerous clients find self-love while encouraging them to pursue more fulfilling lives inside and outside of the safe space she has created. Leah has been featured in Canvas Rebel, and has led several workshops in her hometown of Des Moines. Her audiences leave feeling empowered to take positive action in their authentic lives in her presentation, “Finding the Middle Ground”, I give you Leah Embrey.
Leah: I have had the pleasure of working with so many amazing humans. As a trainer, my focus is strength training and overall health. A cornerstone of my company and as a trainer is creating a trusting environment. During our sessions, vulnerable topics may come up that my clients may have never talked about or have never spoken them out loud.
By creating a trusting environment, it allows us to dig a little bit deeper, creating a lasting connection and safer space. With my clients, there is a common theme that continues to show up as part of my process. I take feedback videos, which allow clients to see their form, especially if they are not able to feel what their body is doing.
A current client of mine was at that time in the process for their feedback video, and they shared they did, they didn't want to, and as a rule abiding child, Someone choosing not to take a video that was part of the process was a big no-no on my end, so we had to figure out what was going on. They shared that they didn't wanna see themselves in the video because they didn't like their appearance, and they were ashamed of where they're at.
Through our discussion. We discovered they were using shame as a motivator. They felt like if they didn't use shame to motivate themselves, they wouldn't work hard and they would become complacent. But those two things are not synonymous with each other. Regardless of what social media tells us, you can still be unsatisfied with where you're at and still want to work hard.
We came to understand. The middle of where they are now and where they want to be is acceptance. When you work through those feelings in a space that is affirming, loving, and non-judging, the more you're able to accept yourself, the more acceptance, the more you'll want to do, the more you'll do and the stronger you will get both in the gym and in life.
As a young child, I felt like everyone else was succeeding and I was falling behind. That's why the gym is so important to me. I found my self-acceptance in eighth grade while lifting for softball, which continued through college. The confidence I gained in the gym cascaded throughout the rest of my life.
That was just the start of my journey, and it's only continued to grow. I am now able to share that same trusting environment with my clients. There are no words to describe the feeling I get seeing my clients find acceptance, confidence, and strength within themselves. I hope that their journey and yours never ends and they continue to get stronger both in the gym and in life.
Have you heard about Leaders For Inclusive Change? It's our online class for parents, teachers, and community leaders to learn how to create safe spaces for our LGBTQ plus youth. This class is typically a DIY online class, but this summer you have the opportunity to take the class live with the two trans teachers who created it.
Join them and other parents and leaders for six weeks of incredible learning, community building, and yes, joy. For more info, check out Leaders for inclusive change dot com. Class begins in July, 2023, so get in there, join us, or take the DIY version all year round leaders for inclusive change dot com.