Mini Episode 5 Charli
Elena Joy: 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 Charli. Pronouns, they them. Charli is a non-binary queer clarity coach, meditation teacher, speaker, and international book club host. They are the CEO of Time Hackers Unite, a community of humans committed to exploring their relationships with our only non-renewable resource time.
Charli has reached over 250,000 people on TikTok teaching tips to navigate humanity while healing from chronic stress and trauma. They have an intuitive gift for asking questions, value, psychological safety, and personal integrity. And help ambitious humans to get clear and confident in their voice and direction so they can bring their dreams to life. Charli's goal is to help eradicate hunger and homelessness through the education and empowerment of their fellow humans, and then the creation of a life skills university with their presentation. How to biohack your Way to Happiness. I give you Charli.
Charli: Ohana means family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten. At 13, public buses were my life, bus drivers were my family. Most teenagers at 13 are worried about puberty and the mean kids at school. My worries were a little different. I'd get up every morning at three in the morning to take two city buses away from the shelter and the bullies.
Walk a mile to school, only to arrive late and then leave school early to walk to take two city buses back to the shelter where I was living. My mom had kicked me out. So with no home, no family, and no one but my Harry Potter books to support me most days felt pretty hopeless. I had two little brothers at home and my youngest brother was one of my favorite humans in the.
I'd often take care of him while my dad was working and my mom was dealing with her depression, and that was how I learned that I could do the stitch voice. As I was riding the bus every day for hours at a time, I would often use this voice, and I realized that using this voice and being able to do other accents, after all, I'd grown up on Robin Williams and the Genie and Aladdin.
I realized that even if things were bad in my life, if I could make people laugh, Maybe I could survive even if I fell asleep on the bus, even as I was living on graham crackers and water from the gas station bathroom, there was a little spark of hope, and I realized that for the first time, maybe my humor could override my hopelessness.
It was my first experience of recognizing the power of my brain. At 20, I was a junior in college. Through a lifetime of trauma, I somehow made my way to higher education. Things were going pretty well. I was on the dean's list, editing the student newspaper. Mentoring incoming freshmen. Freshmen. Most importantly, I was making friends.
Life felt good. I trusted my friends until one of my friends assaulted me. I tried to ignore the impact that it had on me. I tried to pretend that everything was okay, but after six months, I couldn't ignore it anymore. I told my friends and they didn't believe me. Ohana means family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten.
I had learned that these friends were not my family, so I turned in my homework like the Type A student that I was, went home and overdosed. A psych ward doctor refused to medicate me. He wanted to know what had truly happened. Now after a lifetime of trauma, this wasn't my first rodeo in the psych ward, and also I was 20 years old, so I thought I knew everything by then, but this doctor was as stubborn as I was.
So after a week of stony silence, I finally told him about the litany of trauma that I'd experienced as a child and a teenager. Abused from an early age homeless, sex trafficked. This event was just another brutal event. Another betrayal from my friends. The doctor informed me that he didn't think I was suffering from a chemical imbalance, but rather that I had P T S D depression and anxiety.
Not because something was wrong with me, but because of the trauma that I'd endured. He gave me some medicine. He told me that every day for 15 minutes, I was to go into my room and meditate. And at this point I was on suicide watch. So I had a nurse with me at all times. We would go into my room and she would sit in her plastic chair a few feet away while I sat on a gym mat on the floor and tried to meditate.
She'd read her book and I'd close my eyes and every couple of minutes I'd open an eye, just like a cartoon character, and I'd say, how long has it been? And she'd say six minutes, nine minutes, 11 minutes. It was brutal. And then on the seventh day, I wish I could make that up, I experienced something different.
For the first time in my life, I experienced a moment of calm in my body. I realized that the power of my brain was more important than I realized, and I started to understand the connection between my brain and my body because meditation isn't just for your brain. It affects just about every major system in your body. It helps you sleep better, it helps you to digest better. It even helps you to have better sex in that moment, I experienced calm, but I also experienced power. Power that I could have over my mind. I. My body, my life. It was then that I realized that I didn't have to be a statistic. I didn't have to be the result of what had happened to me.
After college, I got my first job, my first full-time job working at a bank as an administrative assistant to 12 people. I started doing the work of three people, reorganizing the entire department until I had enough free time in my 40 hour work week to take on a second job. My new boss was an entrepreneur who hired me part-time and eventually, after a few months, asked me to become her chief operating Officer.
At the same time, my mentor took me to a professional women's organization where I was elected to vice president again within a few months. Clearly I was still a Type A personality at this organization. We would have monthly speakers come over lunch and they would talk about different topics related to personal and professional development.
One speaker in particular talked about the importance of having a relationship with your money, about loving your bills as you paid them. I was, again, reminded of the power of our brain, of our minds, and the importance in around cultivating your mindset. I started working with her, helping her to develop materials for her new program that talked about the link between trauma and entrepreneurship.
I learned that many entrepreneurs become entrepreneurs after childhood trauma because they are looking for a sense of control in their lives. I knew what trauma was because I'd been studying it on my own. But now I was working full-time for an entrepreneur and it was the first time that I was exposed to the idea of entrepreneurship and personal development without the self-help stigma, especially because I was the college student who was reading self-help books behind their scholarly journals.
I learned about Big “T” and little “t” Trauma, big T being the trauma that we often associate with the word. A car accident, a sexual assault, or going off to war, little t being things that are ongoing and often more pervasive. It included aspects of life that I never would've considered. Like the fact that I raised my little brother while my dad worked second shift and my mom was in bed with illness.
Suddenly, it wasn't just about self-regulation or meditation or how trauma showed up in my relationships, it was about how it showed up everywhere. Even in business where we're often told to leave our personal lives at the door. As I moved away from working for other people and I started coaching, I implemented what I was learning about nervous system regulation after stress and trauma, I started cultivating relationships with humans that I now call family because I was able to show up authentically while healing.
I began to see a pattern with my clients. I recognize that we as humans are set up to struggle in most arenas in life in two ways. First, We are not taught most of what we need to know in order to be happy and healthy. This comes down to our needs as humans when it comes to things like budgeting and nutrition, but also emotionally.
We're not taught to feel our feelings, to express our emotions, and certainly not to self-regulate. Adulting is not a skill that we're taught even in university. Second, even if we've heard the word trauma, we don't know what all it encompasses, and we certainly don't know how to deal with it any better than most of us know how to deal with stress.
It made sense that my clients felt stuck, paralyzed, and hopeless when I started working with them because most of them were not given a solid foundation to build on. I spent most of my life living in a traumatized state almost three decades. I didn't know what it was like to live life outside of survival mode.
Research shows that survivors of trauma, including those who are chronically stressed, they have a hard time being happy in their daily lives. People who have had childhood trauma, whether that's Big T or little T, often have difficulties later in life. They don't have the basic life skills it takes to handle their health, to manage their money, or to engage in healthy and supportive relationships.
Pretty much every arena that falls under the umbrella of adulting. Creating a life skills university will not only support people when it comes to all the skills we need to thrive with things like budgeting, nutrition, or home ownership, but also to help people build that solid foundation to help people like you learn how to self-regulate and that the trauma that you've experienced in the past or the stress that is built up long-term in your body doesn't need to dictate your present struggles or future successes.
That's why I love coaching. It's also why I now have a family that I chose, all of whom are healing and growing alongside me. Ohana means family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten. Nobody gets left behind or forgotten. No matter what you've been through, you matter. Your dreams matter, and you cannot learn life skills. You cannot dream when you're in survival mode. So if you are looking to build your solid foundation or you have an audience who could benefit from these skills, you can reach me at time. Hackers unite.com/get curious. Nobody should be left behind or forgotten. You matter.
Elena Joy: I hope you enjoyed this bonus episode featuring our keynote career graduates coming this fall is the companion course OUTWrite authors. This online six week course is a path to publishing class for queer authors of nonfiction books. If you're a thought leader, a business leader, or just have some amazing nonfiction words that the world needs to hear, we want you in this class.
Visit outright authors.com for more info. That's outright, O U T W R I T E authors dot com. A limited number of scholarships will be available. Thank you for joining us, Pride and Joy Fam. Until the next episode, be good to yourselves. I appreciate you.