Karla McLaren

Karla McLaren, M.Ed., is an award-winning author, social science researcher, and empathy pioneer. Her work focuses on her grand unified theory of emotions, which revalues even the most “negative” emotions and opens startling new pathways into self-awareness, effective communication, and healthy empathy. She is the CEO of Emotion Dynamics LLC and the developer of the Empathy Academy online learning site.Karla is the author of Embracing Anxiety, The Dynamic Emotional Integration Workbook, The Art of Empathy, The Language of Emotions, and the multimedia online course Emotional Flow: Becoming Fluent in the Language of Emotions.

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The Power of Emotions at Work

Karla McLaren is an award-winning author, social science researcher, and renowned expert in emotions and empathy. Her work focuses on her grand unified theory of emotions, which reconsiders how we think of “negative” emotions and opens new pathways into self-awareness, communication, and empathy. With Sounds True, Karla is the author of the landmark book The Language of Emotions, a book on The Art of Empathy, and a new book called The Power of Emotions at Work: Accessing the Vital Intelligence in Your Workplace. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon speaks with Karla about why the full range of emotions is necessary for us to bring forth our best thinking. They discuss the “toxic positivity bias” that has become the norm in the contemporary workplace, how this leads to widespread suffering and dysfunction, and how we can achieve an “emotionally well-regulated” workplace that works for all of us.

Karla McLaren:Making Friends with Anxiety … and All ...

Karla McLaren is an award-winning author, social science researcher, and empathy pioneer. Her work focuses on a “grand unified theory of emotions,” in which she moves us beyond looking at some emotions as negative and some as positive, and instead helps people see the genius that lives inside every single emotion. In this podcast, Tami Simon speaks with Karla about managing the multiple emotions that many of us are experiencing as we navigate both a pandemic and a time of societal transformation. Tami and Karla also discuss the importance of creating a community that shares an “emotional vocabulary,” the four keys to unlocking the wisdom of our emotions, and much more.

The gifts of ALL emotions—including depression

Karla McLaren is an award-winning author, social science researcher, and educator whose empathic approach to emotions informs her studies of sociology, anthropology, neurology, and cognitive psychology. With Sounds True, Karla has most recently contributed to the anthology Darkness Before Dawn: Redefining the Journey Through Depression. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Karla and Tami Simon discuss depression as an essential human emotion—one that may carry important messages about what’s no longer working for you. They also talk about the questions you can ask of your emotions to determine their cause and the course of action they are asking you to take. Finally, Tami and Karla speak on the necessity of understanding and embracing the full range of human emotions—even those you deem unpleasant—in order to live a fuller, healthier life. (58 minutes)

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Becoming an Active Operator of Your Nervous System

Deb Dana, LCSW, is a clinician and consultant specializing in using the lens of Polyvagal Theory to understand and resolve the impact of trauma and create ways of working that honor the role of the autonomic nervous system. Her clinical publications include The Polyvagal Theory in Therapy: Engaging the Rhythm of Regulation and The Polyvagal Flip Chart: Understanding the Science of Safety, and her Sounds True publications include the audio program, Befriending Your Nervous System: Looking Through the Lens of Polyvagal Theory, and her new book Anchored: How to Befriend Your Nervous System Using Polyvagal Theory.

In this podcast, Tami Simon converses with Deb Dana to offer listeners a practical understanding of Polyvagal Theory and how we can begin to decode the language of our body for better health and better relationships. Tami and Deb also discuss the dorsal, sympathetic, and ventral states of our nervous system; the gifts of becoming “anchored in ventral”; neuroception, your nervous system’s way of taking in information to assess your safety; curiosity and the capacity for self-reflection; the importance of self-care; co-regulation as a biological imperative; why self-regulation is especially critical for therapists and other helping professionals; music and nature as healing resources; the practice of self-compassion as a means of “getting our anchor back”; and more.

Rewriting Your Food Story

Elise Museles is on the board of directors for the Environmental Working Group, a holistic health expert, and the host of the podcast Once Upon a Food Story. With Sounds True, she’s released the new book Food Story: Rewrite the Way You Eat, Think, and Live. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon speaks with Elise about the concept of “food stories”—your personal relationship with food and eating, defined not only by your own experiences but by the familial and cultural messages you grew up with. They discuss the different kinds of food stories, their origins, and what it takes to “rewrite” your own food story. Elise details different ways you can shift your attitudes toward food, including mindful eating, acceptance of your body’s needs, and cutting screens out of your meals. Finally, Tami and Elise talk about the therapeutic quality of food prep, how to tailor recipes to specific moods, and why “emotional eating” isn’t always a bad thing. 

 

Trauma: The Invisible Epidemic

Dr. Paul Conti is a graduate of Stanford University School of Medicine. He completed his psychiatry training at Stanford and at Harvard. Dr. Conti has served patients and clients throughout the United States and internationally. With Sounds True, he has released a new book called Trauma: The Invisible Epidemic: How Trauma Works and How We Can Heal From It (featuring a foreword by Lady Gaga). In this podcast, Tami Simon speaks with Dr. Conti about healing the unresolved trauma we hold inside both individually and collectively. They also discuss how trauma operates differently in different people, overcoming “reflexive shame,” self-inquiry and the embrace of a “true life narrative,” perseverance and self-compassion, strategies for dealing with traumatic triggers, resolving our grief, how trauma affects the map of our inner landscape, inherited trauma, become a healing resource for others, and much more.

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