Patrick Veroneau is the founder of Emery Leadership Group. Where he helps individuals and organizations identify and develop leadership and sales behaviors that create world class organizations.
He has combined a deep focus in the areas of influence, emotional intelligence and personality to help individuals and organization develop behaviors that inspire, empower and compel others to follow their lead.
Patrick is a member of the Forbes Coaches Council and Harvard Business Review Advisory Board.
He also the host of podcast, Lead Like No Other.
Connect with Patrick:
Connect with Laura Khalil online:
Get on Laura’s Newsletter:
Invite Laura to speak at your live or virtual event http://bravebydesign.net
Support the show (https://www.paypal.me/bravebydesign)
Episode 21 on Managing stress and Setting Healthy Habits with Patrick Varano Welcome to Brave by design I'm your host LL Oracle, Ill. I'm an entrepreneur, coach and speaker. I love thinking big, exploring the power of personal development and sharing the best strategies from about leaders and pioneers and business to empower ambitious women and allies to bravely rise and thrive. Let's get started. Hey, friends, welcome back to this episode. This is me, Laura. I am so pleased to be with you today. I wanted to share a couple of really exciting announcements about the show and how we can connect further. The first is that we have cracked the 100 top 110 career podcasts on Apple Podcast. So I really want to thank you for those of you who heeded the call to give the show reviews Thio, give us five stars, so appreciate it and please keep it coming. If you are so inspired, it really, really, really helps us move up the ranks. Finally, one more thing I want to let you know about before we dive into this amazing episode with Patrick Varano. Ah, this sadder arms air this Sunday April 26th. I am giving a workshop on unlocking your intuitive gifts. If you have felt that you don't know where you're going, you do not have clarity on your next steps. You feel that you are in a fog. You're having trouble trusting yourself. I want to teach you some mindfulness techniques that can really help turn the tides can help clear the fog and can help you see your path forward. I want you to know that I believe you're here for a reason. I believe you are here to do great things, and I believe those go beyond just what your career is and I want to help you uncover what that is for you. So in this unlocking your intuitive gifts workshop, we're going to go meet your higher self, otherwise known as your inner no er, and you're gonna learn some meditations to help ground you calm you and release some of the stress anxiety and overwhelmed So you can see clearly if you want to learn more about that head on over to brave by design dot net. At the time of this recording, we have eight spots left, and I'm pretty sure they're all gonna be gone by Friday. So I hope you can join me for that. And without further ado, let's get into today's episode. Everyone, welcome to this episode of Brave by design. I am so excited for today's guests. He's already, like laughing at me, but, like, seriously, because I was on his incredible podcast lead like no other last week and we just hit it off. So let me tell you about who we're going to speak with today. Patrick Verano is the founder of Emory Leadership Group, where he helps individuals and organisations identifying develop leadership and sales behaviors that create world class organizations. He's also the co founder of Candor Development Solutions, has a masters and organizational leadership and has combined his deep focus in the areas of influence, emotional, intelligence and personality to help individuals and organisations develop behaviours that inspire, empower and compel others to follow their lead. He is a member of the Forbes coaches counsel and a Harvard Business Review advisory board member. Oh my God, Patrick, Welcome to break by design.
Thank you so much. That was that was a badass introduction.
That's right, Patrick. Okay, well, my first question for you is this is totally unrelated. Are you off French Canadian descent? I am up
without the X on the on the end. Right lot of the French Canadian would B e a u x no X.
That's right. Because when I see your last I lived in Montreal for about 10 years. And so every time I see like a French Canadian last name, I'm like, huh? Wonder what their story is? So, um, that's really cool. So Patra and you're in Maine.
I am in. Maybe
you're close to the Canadian border, so to speak or the perfect border. So, Patrick, tell us about how you got into this work.
Um, you know, I think probably like most of us, that Aaron coaching or have done this kind of work at least the stories that I will hear people say. You know, ever since I can remember, people would come to me with questions about, you know, I've got this problem or I'm doing this. Can you give me some advice on that? And that was always I always enjoyed that space. And then, um, when I was working in the biotech field, I was in sales I was in sales training, I was in leadership development, and I just that was a part that I always loved was a curiosity of How can things get better? How come talking improve wherever we are? And in 2008 right before then, I went to a small biotech company that was sold, and I had a severance at that point, basically almost a year's severance. And I thought, You know what? If ever there was an opportunity to go out and do what I really want to do, now is the time. So I left got certified all of this stuff well at that time. If people remember 2008
one heck of a time to make a career transistor, but that may be a great time to do it, I don't know.
So here's what's interesting is that the market hadn't crashed opposite at that point. This was in the spring that I started of that year, and I had. My wife was at home. We had three kids. Our youngest was a year old. We had just purchased a new house, right, all of these things, and then the market crashes in the fall all of my severance was still in stock. So basically, in about four weeks time, my my severance went to about two months.
So, yes. So what I did was, um I jumped back into the industry that I knew. Okay. Inside hustled. Okay. For a while longer. So I was doing both. I would take time off. I would, um, coach people on the side. Whatever I needed to do, it was it was a great opportunity, Believe it or not, because it was almost like I I had a step back and really say what I want this thing to look like when I re launch it again.
Wow. And so when did you kind of when were you able to end the side hustle and move full time into coaching?
Um, it was probably about five years later.
Okay, So and that's a really good lesson for people to hear, because sometimes it takes some time, you know?
Yeah, you know what? And I think that's a thing. Is being patient, I think is can really be valuable because especially with social media, right? We look at it and we think, Oh, everybody's got everything right up front and we don't see all the work that went in behind what they've done. And I use that as an opportunity to say, What are the pieces that I still need to put together? Because as most people when we start, our business is like If I if I knew what I knew now that I probably wouldn't have done that in the first place, I was like, What? What do?
Seriously, right? But it's also like, How bad do you want it? You know, And I think that's the real test for people who think about, you know, I don't really love when we talk about turning passions into professions because, you know, I might really like knitting, but that doesn't mean I want to do it for, you know, 60 hours a week for five years until a, you know, make it bigger whatever in the dating world. So I I love this. You took a sustainable interest. You continued to work at it. You continue to follow the challenges and take on the challenges as they came. You didn't just give up when it got hard, you kept going, and we're really freaking resourceful, Patrick
Yeah, and we may have had that conversation before. I think that really is. There's a lot of what I think about, right. There's a resource is in this resourcefulness, and I'm not the 1st 1 to talk about this. But I do believe in it that we we all lack resource is especially right now. Time money. Too tall. I'm too short, whatever it might be. But one thing that we all have equal access to is resourcefulness. Nobody has any more or any less than that. We all have the ability to figure it out. It's who chooses to do that.
So when we're talking about that right now, we're going through this era of incredible instability in our jobs in the market, maybe really having some sort of thoughts about how our career is going to go or where we're headed. How do we begin to develop that resourceful mindset? Where do people begin?
Yeah, um, for me right now, it's it's focused on How can I be for others? That's really what I've I've been focusing on is I've taken a lot of workshops that I was doing within organizations in saying, How can I take components of these, knowing what people are going through right now and just put it out there knowing that people need this stuff. So is an example. There's Ah Ah workshop that why were we were talking about before we get on is around stress management called Nat navigating stress through crisis. And to me it's a leadership workshop because it's really it's about finding ways that we can be for others, right? I'm I'm trying to navigate my own stress, figure it out. But if I can do it effectively, then I inspire other people around me to be able to say I could do this to There are things that we can do to navigate the stress that we're in because we're all facing.
We are. Now. Let's talk a little bit about navigating stress. You have this quote. Um, so part of that works up. You have actually put up online on your podcast. Yeah, and I really, really love that, and we'll put a link to it in the show notes guys, if you want to hear the whole thing. But there's a quote in there that I love for you to expand on. You say stress is a result of a lack of control. Yeah, What does that mean?
Yeah, think about anything that we're stressed about. If I'm stressed financially, what's that? The result of I don't have control over either the money that's coming in or what I'm having to pay out. I lack the control. What about if I'm stressed about one of my kids right now in terms of their behavior? What does that come down to? Its I'm stressed, because I don't control the choices they might be making. Um, if I'm stressed about a relationship I'm in. If I'm stressed about my job, it's because some some component of that job I don't feel as though I've got the control. There's a lack of control, and I believe that that is, that's the root cause of stress is when we lack control. Now. That said, I should say distress because we need stress, right? There are challenges that creates stress in us that are very good. That's how we grow. But that, to me, is we control those right. It's it's stress in a way that I know this is coming on, but to me it's a signal almost to say You need to get something in order that you don't have right now Step it up.
So, Patrick, let's talk about control because that's a really interesting topic. You say stress is originated in us, feeling like we have a lack of control. How much do you think we actually control? Where does that? Where does that come in? In this equation? You know, in terms of we can think about like that from. And I know you talked about this from victim mindsets to empowered mindsets. Where does what is control? What do we have control over?
We control very little right in the big scheme of things we control very little other than just ourselves. How we respond to it. And Victor Frankel write his book Man Search for many talks about that, this idea that we there's very little that we could control other than how we respond to it. And I think that's really when Justin doing that when we can sort of keep that in perspective, it changes it because, ah, and I'll give an example. There were there had been warnings that I would wake up and I would be I just felt anxious about where my business was. You know, Odo, I I've got this project going on right now, But what am I doing six months from now? Do I have enough? That's gonna keep me going through. And I could either let that consume me or I could say, What is this telling me? It's telling me. Maybe I need to take a look at What am I doing right now? Two. To address where I'm going to be in six months. I feel like there's a I don't have control over that right now, but I can control it. I can start putting together a game plan for people I need to reach out to for for business that is going to get me in six months. But again, it's It's my control over that. I do a lot of work around emotional intelligence and workshops in organizations, and what's interesting is I will always have at least a few people that they'll be snickering with between China and say, Oh, you know who should be here. Jim should be in this workshop where Sally should be in the workshop like they're the ones that need emotional intelligence and I will always joke and say, You know what? They may need to be here, but they may never come. So rather than wait for them to get here, you have the control. All you can control is how you manage yourself, how you respond to them. You can't control anything else
that is so true. And, um, it's it's I always like to say without when I work with clients, it's not what people aren't doing anything to you. Nobody is doing something to you, Okay? They don't care about you that much. They and in any way that's not what's happening. They you are just perceiving in a certain way, and that's creating, as you say, the stress or distress, or maybe unmet expectations or anxiety or overwhelm or whatever it is. And that's what you can work on. And that's so powerful, because that means that you can really help to create the way that you view your world and how you co create your world with a full acknowledgement that we don't control anyone else
you bring up such a great point to in terms of talking about bias, is the biases are they create so much, Um, I think anxiety at times or problems within organizations between ourselves that they call them unconscious. Biases for that exact reason is that we don't realize that they're there. But we we oftentimes create the situations that we don't to experience.
Yes, tell us more about that. That's super interesting.
Um, so I'll give you I'll give you one. That I use quite a bit is when I'm working with organizations is one that's called diagnosis bias and diagnosis. Biases is one that there was a study quick. There was a study that was done with M. I. T. Students back in the 19 fifties, and this class was told you're gonna get a substitute professor for the day and 1/2 of the class was given one description of them, and the other house was given another and they didn't know. But they were all going to be in the same class. And it was all you know, Professor Smith is these air their credentials and some would describe Professor Smith is a rather warm individual, and the other half of the class was given all the same stuff, except for those that know Professor Smith would describe. Professor Smith is a rather cold individual, so the only difference was woman cold. Well, after the class was over, they had to fill out an assessment on Professor Smith. And they all sat in the same class. The warm, the warm description, students said Professor Smith was approachable, intelligent, um, you know, humorous, well organized. Yet Professor Cold was unapproachable, disorganized, not likeable,
same class saint. But when we think of the word warm, if somebody is described as a warm individual, what do we think? Generally they're nice there. But if if I were to say, Oh, that person's pretty cold, then we don't tend to think of that person is right there aloof. They're not nice there. Distrustful had nothing to do with it. Now think about that from a standpoint of how often does somebody say, Oh, you're gonna be meeting with so and so wait to put them there. They're such a nightmare, so we don't even realize that it's going on. But we start to then look for the nightmarish tendencies in somebody else
because it's kind of been seated.
It's been seated in us. That's exactly it, and we
do all the time. So what do we do about that?
So first up is you need to recognize So that's a lot of the work that I will do. Starting out in terms of workshops is just exposing people to our biases. And I always joke to say they're called unconscious biases because just is in the studies, nobody would admit to Oh, yeah, No, I definitely do that
way, wouldn't it? There's a lot of shame and also denial around that stuff.
Denial. No, I don't do that. I give everybody the benefit of the doubt, Right, Bull? We
don't that's true.
But just to stop being aware of it, what we can start to do is when when we see that started happen, we can take a step back, right? The pausing again of saying Maybe this isn't who this person is, and maybe I'm not giving them the benefit of the doubt.
You know, this is a really interesting point because a lot of our listeners are women in leadership or they are women in HR. And what I think is interesting about what you're saying is that if you have had a challenge with a particular group of people. Let's say you've had a past experience where you work with some guys where life was a little bit challenging or difficult or you didn't feel like you were taken seriously. You carry that on with you, so it doesn't necessarily even have to do anything with the person in front of your face right now. It could be with that memory off. Oh, it just must be that way. And that's why it's unconscious. We don't even realize we're doing it, and we're transferring this and putting it on people.
You bring up such a great point because these studies have gone back to look at, you can have things that trigger you on somebody else. The smell of them, their cologne that they were remind you of somebody else that you had a bad experience with and or somebody looks like somebody you didn't like, and all of a sudden I feel like I don't know what it is about that person. Well, yes, you d'oh! They look like exactly who you didn't like the last time. But how important that is for us to again just be aware that these things happen. There's a great Harvard business article review that I will often use or a great article in Harvard Business Review, I should say, and it's called Set up to Fail Syndrome. And the whole point of this argued article is to talk about how a manager and an employee how things can go wrong so quickly by such a small thing. But it it it builds on itself that a manager starts to look at. An employee is maybe needing Maur supervision, and the employee takes that supervision as they're not doing a good job and they start making more mistakes. The manager then thinks they need them or supervision because they're now making mistakes and you see where it just builds on itself. That's what cycle, right? Catch 22 right? Builds on itself.
Wow. Okay, so that I'm getting stressed just thinking about this like holy cow. So, Patrick, for those of us, let's let's let's get back to that stress component because for those of us who are at home now, which is pretty much everyone who's not an essential worker, um, weird. As you said, we're dealing with the kids. Our spouse is maybe worrying about Ah loved ones or family members and their safety. We may be worried about her job, and we're now being told. Okay, well, listen, what can you control? So you know all you can. As you said, all you can control is yourself. What do you recommend for people who are going through these forms of stress? I know that you talk about positive coping and negative coping. What did those mean? And what do we do? We default to negative usually. Or how does that work?
We can, um right, cause negative coping tends to be immediate. It's reactionary. So it might be I avoid the subject because I don't want to deal with it. So I just I just try and pretend it doesn't exist, or I resort to alcohol or drugs or other things to sort of dull that or I just complain about it, right? I just think like this is always gonna be a terrible situation, whatever it might be. But when we look at the positive things that weaken d'oh, um, it's it's around things again that we know the research is there for things like exercise and nutrition and enough sleep. Um, and interaction right. How important that is. Isolation is not good for us. And although isolation might be good for us physically, in terms of preventing us from catching the virus, that's the only place that it is beneficial in in other every other area, mentally, physically, spiritually. Yeah, it's detrimental to us that we need to find ways around that. And we can do that through zoom or or phone calls. Or, you know, we've got neighbors, that we sit basically 15 feet apart of each other in chairs, and at least we're out having conversations right where we're practicing that social distancing. But we're still we need that were pack animals right? There's a sense of belonging nous that we need to be able to to connect with other people. So those were some of the some of the quick tactical things that you can do. But there's also a piece in that workshop that I did, which is based on some more longer term research that was done and it was based on research. Ra One is what's called a 21 day Happiness Challenge, which was done by Harvard researcher called Sean Acre, and what I did was I took that and then really almost beefed it up with some additional research that validates why each one of those five behaviors are so important. And what I did was I created a journal called the Power Journal, and it takes each one of those things. So the P and that is praise its every morning. You want to find three things you're grateful for? Just think of three things you're grateful for. So the Owen, that model based on the the 21 day challenge, was around others do something for somebody else. Today, at least one thing call somebody up. Right. Even though we're social distancing, there are still things that we can do for other people and how important that is, Right? Just when I said that you smiled right, because we think about that when we do for other people, we know that makes us feel good. And it also it it sends on this ripple that you do something for somebody else. So the w in that is around writing. So you want to at the end of the day, right? 2 to 3 sentences or for, you know, 2 to 5 minutes. What went well for the day. And if you think about that right, we start the day out from a standpoint of being grateful and we end the day in a place of gratitude as well, because we're thinking about what did go well for the day. And I know that can be really hard in the environment that we're in when you've got a house full of people that are all stress. But maybe just being grateful today that nobody argued with each other. Maybe it's that simple, right? They don't have to be earth shattering things. Face what it does. Is it it? It puts us in a mindset before we go to bed, which is the most important part of the 24 hours We have his restorative sleep. Now, how many times and what I think we're wired this way that we think about what? Didn't I get done today or what do I have to do tomorrow when I wake up in the morning, we go to bed in the negative state. Where is this? This really challenges us to go to bed with something positive. What went well for the day and we can all think of those things is small. Maybe it's you should meet it through the day. Whatever it is, you gotta start somewhere. So the next one was exercise, huh? 10 minutes a day in this 21 day challenge, that's all they had to do. Was 10 minutes a day. Um, I do. I've inserted research because of the work that I do talking to organizations that there's a research out there that shows that 30 minutes a day is on a minimum of three days a week. In a study that I, I present, was done with patients that had been diagnosed with a major depressive episode. Now these were clinically depressed patients on What they found was in these three groups. One did 30 minutes of exercise. One did, um, an antidepressant alone. And one did exercise, plus the antidepressant. And what they found was, even after 10 months, the exercise group did better than the other two.
Really? No, that's not that's just
by itself Now. That's not to say that everybody, that's on an idea. Preston, just stop and work out for 30 minutes, three days a week. But we know the power of exercise and to me. I just did this workshop last night for a group around this component to and I said, You know what people says I was just too tired today. I was too stressed out to go out walk, and it's like, That's exactly why you need to do it
right. I will todo yeah,
I've been running for over 20 years. There is not a day in 20 years that I've said, Oh, I love this. I start out every day like this sucks. I really not like right? Hate it, I hate it. That said, there's not a day that's gone by that an hour after I'm finished. I'm like, I'm so glad I did that. That was awesome. Always the last pieces of relaxation And that's the are in the power model, which was around meditation. And this isn't about levitating off the ground under like, you know, these are simple things that we can do. This was only two minutes a day. I mean, you could work on gesture breathing for two hours.
So for the meditation peace, how long is that? Two minutes, just two minutes as act just closing your eyes may be breathing
right, focusing on your breath. Yeah. So what I did in the power journal, it I'd set up was created a I think they were probably 10 different mindfulness exercises that have been shown thio impact people.
I love that, you know, And I really think this exercise piece that you mentioned is I mean, they're all very critical, but I want to I want to go to that because I will say, as someone who I mean, you could call me exercise Avoidance is pretty much my personality. I'm like, I would rather do my taxes the But I'll tell you, figuring out what works for you and that is really important. And so one of the things for those of you, for anyone listening to this that is like me. And I'm sure there's a couple of you I have found so much joy in having these at home dance parties. I I don't feel like I'm exercising. I don't I just feel like I'm running around the house, being silly, jumping around, listening to music. We do a dance party almost every night at 7 30 and we just put the music on, and we just have fun and it it it not only does it feel good, I mean it just actually boost all your endorphins. So you feel better at the end of it. And it's become something maybe for you. Like the running where it's like, Gosh, well, I don't really feel like doing it, But it feels so good after I'm going to do it anyway.
Yeah, you know, it's interesting, and I don't have the the piece of research behind this, but I I saw it somewhere safe in it, doing things that your arms tend to move. It's somehow self sues us.
there's a mechanism in that that movement like that creates sort of this self soothing, um, effect. And I would tend to believe in that. So it's interesting
again. That's all interesting.
Find your own thing, whatever that might be. It just has to work for you. Um, are you familiar with Mel? Robbins showed right. She wrote the book called The five Second Rule. I Am. I am the poster child for the five
second Tell us
So the five second rule, basically in work that she did, she found that if you wait more than five seconds to do something that you're not comfortable doing. What you will do is that that part of your brain will then kick in. That will tell you all the reasons why you shouldn't do this right. You'll do it tomorrow. You'll do with the next day. If it was to may be, call somebody. It was Oh, they probably don't want to hear from me today or all of these different things. So if it's a difficult conversation, you could say, Ah, time's not right. I'm not gonna have this now. I'll do it later. And what? What happens? We never do. It s O. As I just told you before, my story about running there are literally days that and I get up early. First thing I do generally is go for a run that if I were to come down and all of a sudden the counter might have some things on it that need to be cleaned off, and I'm like, Oh, you know what? I'm just gonna put those in the dishwasher before I go for my run. Well, what happens is I've now create Well, now I'm gonna you know. Now I'm just gonna do this. One more thing before I know it. I've burned 1/2 an hour's worth the time. Avoid going for my run and all of a sudden like, Well, I don't have time to do it now and I march back upstairs and I go there for work. Yeah, I I waited. I should have said I'll do the dishes when I get back. Yeah, I gave myself more than five seconds. Just say, Don't think about it. Don't justify another opportunity to do it. Just do it like
so the five seconds is a countdown from literally Yeah,
and that's what she did. Now it's her whole story is about how she was depressed and she was in bed. She's a CNN reporter and then went through this, um, bout of depression, where she wasn't even getting out of bed in the day. She would set the alarm at night and have her closed ready in the morning to say I'm gonna work out first thing in the morning and then find herself hitting the snooze button all day long before she finally got out of bed. And she actually said she watched, um, a lift off of of the shuttle and she says, As corny as that sounds, it was a countdown and the
off and she said I applied the same thing to myself, and before anything I did, I would I would count down 5432 And before I got the one, I had to take some action on it, and it just it just continued to work because we know the science behind that is what it does, is it? It allows us not to have time to justify why we shouldn't do it. It's like the person that's on the diving board and they're like, No, I'm going No, I'm really going to do with this time and what do they do? They generally come down right to and then they go
go, Oh, I just love that. I, uh I talked about the five second rule a lot. When I go and speak because it is such it's it has so many wide applications total, you can use it in your work. You can use it for exercising, getting up in the morning, have an end, having that difficult conversation that you've been avoiding. Um, you know, those types things. It's it's just very widely applicable. And it's so easy.
Yeah, totally. And think about what do we do? We self preserve ourselves. So especially if it's something that we are uncomfortable doing it. There are other people around like, Oh, what if somebody sees me do this? It's gonna be embarrassing. I'm not gonna do it right. If you wait more than five seconds, that's exactly what you do. You justify why I'll do this when nobody's looking. But if you don't, you just go home. You go.
And you know it's interesting. Just in that example, People are always way more focused on themselves than they are, and you pull everyone. Please remember that we're all thinking about ourselves way more than we're looking at you. Um, Patrick, it's been such a pleasure to have
you know, this has been a
sign. I just loved it up. How can people find you?
Well, a couple ways. One is Emery Leadership Group, which is Ah e M e R y leadership group dot com. And on their people want, there's the ability on the download. You'll see there to get that power journal, and it's free um, the other is through the podcast that I run called lead like no other. Um, I'm also on, you know, certainly other social media as well. Instagram, I'm Coach Patrick V.
Oh, okay. I love it. Um, well, thank you so much for joining us on this episode.
Yeah. Thanks for having me.
I want to thank you for joining me. And remember to subscribe to your favorite app so you can stay up to date. And I would love your review. If you've enjoyed this episode, please leave a review and comment on apple podcasts. You can also keep in touch with me online. You confine me on Lincoln, and I'm also on instagram at force of Bad Ass Irie. All that information will be available in the show notes until next time. Stay brave.