Do you make more money than your significant other? For many women in this position, the mind drama around having masculine and feminine energy causes intense suffering at home and work.
Being the breadwinner has traditionally been a husband’s role in the family. But this antiquated norm about household income is outdated, and it’s hurting our ability to create the life we desire as partners, as mothers, and as businesswomen.
My guest today is a badass female breadwinner like many of you, and she coaches her clients on how to go from painfully surviving to thriving.
r. Kim Golden is a physician and Certified Life Coach who works to inspire a new generation of women to embrace their earnings and their role as the breadwinner.
In today’s episode, Dr. Kim and I have a fascinating conversation about the societal constructs that make women breadwinners feel unfeminine and unfulfilled. We discuss being vulnerable while having wealth, finding a mate when you’re making a lot of money, and how embracing your feminine energy can help your business grow.
This episode is for the next generation of daughters who aren’t expected to be superheroes, just humans with permission to find fulfillment.
Check out the video of our conversation below!
What you will discover
- Dr. Kim’s journey to becoming a female breadwinner.
- How to be vulnerable without pretending you don’t know the answer.
- Why antiquated beliefs about money can make it hard to find a partner.
- One unconscious reason some of us have for not making more money.
- Why we don’t want to be superheroes.
- How embracing your feminine energy can help your business grow.
Featured on the show
You are listening to The Life Coach School Podcast with Brooke Castillo, episode number 351.
Welcome to The Life Coach School Podcast, where it’s all about real clients, real problems and real coaching. And now your host, Master Coach Instructor, Brooke Castillo.
Hi, Brooke here. A quick note before we get started. In the following episode, Kim Golden and I get deep into the experience of being high-earning women in a romantic partnership with a man. As two heterosexual women, we are speaking about our experience through our lens and how traditional gender roles have, at times, influenced our thoughts and continue to impact the thoughts of others.
Although there is evidence that these things are changing, a higher percentage of women are becoming primary earners, and as we learn more about gender expansiveness, there are still a lot of people who are deeply impacted by the traditional narratives. This is what we’re exploring on the show.
You’ll also hear us use the terms feminine and masculine. When we talk about this, we’re not talking about genders. We’re talking about feminine and masculine energy and archetypes. Any person of any gender can hold feminine and masculine energy.
I hope you enjoy this episode.
Brooke: Super excited today y’all. We are going to talk about my favorite topic. Actually, two of my favorite topics, women and money, honey. So, we’re going to talk about when women make more money. And I’ve invited onto the podcast Dr. Kim Golden, and she specializes in coaching women breadwinners. And we’re going to hear all about her practice, and what she does, and her own personal experience. But we’re also just going to have a free discussion about what it’s like to be a badass woman who makes a lot of cash. Because we are both those women. And I know that a lot of you listening to this are those women, and there’s a lot to discuss. So we’re just going to go ahead and dive in. Welcome to the podcast.
Kim: Thank you, and thank you for having me.
Brooke: I’m so excited to have you here. Why don’t we start with you just doing a short intro about yourself and the work that you do and a little bit of your background.
Kim: Sure. So my name is Dr. Kim Golden, I am a certified life coach and a physician, specifically a forensic pathologist. I’m from Detroit, Michigan and my journey into becoming a female breadwinner stemmed from a thought that I had when I was a child because I grew up witnessing some domestic violence.
And I’m a forensic pathologist and patterns are my thing, right? I’ve been looking for them and studying them for a while. And some of the recurring sentences that I would hear when women talked about their experience in domestic violence situations was that they felt stuck because they didn’t bring home the money. And so from that point on I said, “I don’t want to find myself in the same situation.” So I made a decision early on that I wanted to be financially independent for that reason.
Kim: And so that’s sort of what drove me to pursue a career in medicine. And to want to be able to have that title under my belt, and to have the freedom that comes along with being financially independent. But what I didn’t know was there’s some other things that come along with it that will also…
Kim: That didn’t start to surface until later on in my journey.
Brooke: Yeah, that’s so interesting. When I was young my mom would always tell me, “Don’t ever be dependent on a man. Don’t ever depend on a man financially. You should always make your own money.” So, it’s interesting when we’re young we get these ideas in our head that we take as truth and go after as if that will be the answer to all of the problems.
Kim: Yes. Yes.
Brooke: And it does, it answers some problems but it also creates other ones, right?
Kim: Yeah, you’re right. And then it also creates an interesting dynamic between our experiences and our parent’s experiences, our mom’s experiences. Right? Like my mom was a stay-at-home mom and she and I didn’t really see eye to eye. And we couldn’t really relate when it came to my status as being a female breadwinner and the things that come along with that.
And I think it brings up an interesting point because we’re dealing with a whole other dynamic, right? Back when my mom was a stay-at-home mom about 3% of women were the primary earners for their household, right?
Kim: Now it’s like a whopping fifty-something percent.
Kim: And so we’re taking the advice and those gender norms that we’ve been conditioned to – that were implemented 50 years ago that aren’t really applicable now.
Brooke: Yes. Yeah.
Kim: And so it creates an interesting opportunity for us in terms of creating a road map and creating a model for, not only ourselves, but our daughters as well who may find themselves in similar situations.
Brooke: Yeah. And one of the things that I have noticed as a woman who is making money in a world where, typically – hundreds of years before – the men were making the money, is trying to find that balance between being a woman, being a feminine woman, and creating money without losing my femininity. And it’s something I’ve been thinking a lot about in terms of my relationships, and how I show up, and being able to find that balance between the two. And it’s uncharted territory.
And that’s why I love that we’re having this conversation. Because I think a lot of times people will make the false assumption that they have to choose, right?
Brooke: I’m going to either choose to live the life of my mother, which is stay at home, and feminine, and soft, and motherly. Or I’m going to choose to live the life of my “father”, which is masculine, and hustling, and out in the world, and independent, and free.
Brooke: And so one of the things that I really want to start teaching and incorporating is that you can have both.
Kim: Right. And having both requires vulnerability on our part, right?
Brooke: Yes. Yes.
Kim: Because it doesn’t really serve us in our workplace, or in our careers to be vulnerable all the time, to show that trait. It doesn’t really serve us well. But, when we’re talking about our personal lives and our interpersonal relationships, even with ourselves, that trait is one that is useful, and is meaningful, and is necessary really.
Because when we’re embracing our vulnerability it’s part of embracing our humanness and our human experience. And knowing that we don’t have to be strong all the time. And we don’t have to always be the one to make all the decisions. And it’s okay to let our hair down, and to relax, and breathe a little bit, you know?
Kim: And we don’t have to carry the weight of the world on our shoulders. So we can make a lot of money and still embrace our femininity at the same time.
Kim: It’s possible.
Brooke: Yeah. I was actually just talking to my boyfriend about this as a balance that I’m trying to figure out. Because there’s this vulnerability and space that I can create in my femininity where I feel like I can wait for answers to come, and be open to possibility, and be vulnerable and not always be in control and not always have the answer. But I also have a tendency to people please, right?
Brooke: So, I think as a very strong, capable, intelligent woman it’s a challenge for me to be vulnerable without pretending.
Brooke: And that’s the thing that… Like, I don’t want to pretend like I’m a damsel in distress. Right? I don’t want to pretend like I need saving. I don’t want to pretend like I don’t know the answer and defer to my man.
Kim: Yes. You’re right.
Brooke: I want to actually be in a very feminine powerful place while telling the truth.
Brooke: And there is no direction for that in our lives.
Brooke: I haven’t received any direction. So, I’m super good at people- pleasing and I’m super good at being in charge. And now I’m like navigating this in between space and trying to stay authentic and tell the truth so I’m not lying and people-pleasing. But also not having, like you’re saying, not having to be in control and have all the answers all the time.
Brooke: And damn, that shit is hard.
Kim: Okay. It’s daunting. It’s daunting but it’s a beautiful opportunity. It’s also a wonderful space to be in.
Kim: It’s uncharted territory but there’s promise in that space, you know?
Kim: And we definitely have the ability to create that type of experience. But we don’t have a road map, you know?
Brooke: Right. Right. And that’s the work that you’re doing, right? Is helping us as we come to these places with ourselves. And I think for me personally, and I won’t speak for everyone. But for me personally, I really stayed in my masculine energy of creation and kind of penetrating the world and creating my business and making all the money at the expense, sometimes, of my femininity. Of that space where I could just be in the receiving.
And someone had just pointed this out to me. Actually, Apriel pointed this out to me when I was talking to her. She had wanted to bring me a gift. And she’d reached out to my staff and said, “Hey, I want to bring Brooke a gift.” And my staff said to her, “`Brooke doesn’t like gifts. She doesn’t want anyone to bring a gift.” And Apriel gave me a hard time about that, because we’re working on a class right now, how to use your femininity to create financial abundance.
And she said, “What do you mean you don’t take gifts?” And I said, “That’s just not… I don’t want people buying me gifts and everyone was sending me gifts.” And she goes, “Well, that’s because you’re in your masculine energy.” And it was such a profound aha moment for me. Like really realizing I have been blocking that area of my life. Where many of my clients want to send me beautiful things and I’m like, “No, no, no. I don’t need that. Don’t send that to me.” Because I’m in that very strong masculine energy.
So I decided y'all, send me some gifts. I’m ready. I’m going to come into my feminine… I’m going to come into that more receiving energy. Now, what I think is so interesting about money making… I’ll be interested to hear what you think about this.
Brooke: I do think we have to be in both, right? So, we have to be able to create and produce value, which is beautiful masculine energy. And by the way, all of us have both and we want to have both. It’s not like we’re all feminine only, right?
Brooke: So, I love that creation masculine energy. But also, to receive and the capacity to have requires your feminine energy too. So I do feel like I’ve been able to do that with money. But I haven’t done it as well in my interpersonal relationships, in my relationships with my friends and with my clients and my students. And that’s something that I really want to work more on but is very challenging for me. Do you find that with a lot of your women clients?
Kim: I do. I do find that a lot with my women clients. And even an element, especially when it comes to speaking to their partners and feeling like they have to protect their male counterparts from feeling emasculated.
Brooke: Oh, right.
Kim: Or feeling awkward when you're out in a social setting and then the check goes to your partner versus coming to you. Like feeling like they need to make their men feel more manly because they’re in this position.
Brooke: Oh, wait. So let’s talk about this for a minute.
Brooke: This is actually interesting. So, you’re talking about you’re at dinner with your husband or your boyfriend, or your man, right?
Brooke: And the waiter drops the check off to the man, but you’re the one paying.
Brooke: Yeah. And so what comes up for you in that situation? Or your clients?
Kim: So, what has come up is like they feel a little guilty, or they feel embarrassed for their man that he’s not able to play that role of being their provider. Because it’s assumed if you have a man and a woman out to dinner the man, of course, is paying. But that’s because, that’s where those antiquated gender roles and gender norms come in. And they intertwine themselves in our beliefs about how our interpersonal relationships as money making women should go.
Kim: And many times it’s not serving us well. And it doesn’t work for our personal relationships. It may not work for you to have your husband going out working and you’re also a CEO.
Brooke: Yeah. Right.
Kim: Somebody may have to stay home but there’s nothing wrong with that. But society would have us to believe differently.
Brooke: Let’s talk about that. Let’s talk about the check thing because I’m totally… I was talking to one of my girlfriends about this and she had a boyfriend that wasn’t making as much money as she was, but she would give him her card before dinner. So when the check came, he could pretend that he was the one paying for the dinner. Now, everybody at the table probably knew this guy wasn’t making enough money to be paying for this big fancy dinner.
Brooke: But just to set up that social construct in a way that wouldn’t be “embarrassing”, so instead they’re lying about it.
Kim: Lying. Lying, and for what?
Brooke: Yeah. Right.
Kim: Like who cares? Why is it a big deal?
Kim: Why does it matter?
Brooke: Yeah, but why is it a big deal? Because the idea is that the man is somehow not as good, not as manly, not as masculine, not good enough because he’s not paying the bill or providing. Or because the woman makes more money.
Kim: Right, because we’ve adopted that belief as our own. And a lot of times it’s not serving us whatsoever, it’s not helping anything. And it even, I found in working with my clients, the ones that are single, those antiquated beliefs even affect their ability to be able to choose a mate without factoring in how many zeros are behind his paycheck.
Brooke: Oh my gosh. That was huge for me, right? So this is so interesting. When I started dating... I make a lot of money. Like, for me to find a man that makes more money than me is like… I mean my pool to choose from all of a sudden dwindled, right?
Kim: Of course.
Brooke: But in my mind I was like, “I want a man who makes a lot of money. Like I want a man that’s super ambitious. I want a man that has his own company, and all of that.” Like in my mind. And now, in retrospect, I want to evaluate, like what was that about, right? What was that desire about? Because what happened was, I met a man that just hit every single emotional desire that I’ve ever had and I felt so much love for that I was like, “What in the hell do I need a guy that has money for? I got all the money.”
Kim: Right. Like you’ve already checked off the financial…
Brooke: The last thing I need is more money from a man, right? But in my mind, I thought I had wanted that. And I do think it’s these… Actually, I was talking to my friend Kara about it and she makes a lot of money too. And so I was asking her, I’m like, “What do you think about that?” And she goes, “That doesn’t even occur to me, how much money they make. That’s not important to me at all.”
Brooke: And I just loved the way that she talked about it. She’s like, “When I’m looking for a relationship, I’m looking at who I want to spend time with. Money isn’t an issue at all.” She’s like, “I don’t mind paying for everything, that’s just...” And it was so refreshing, having her say that. It like gave me permission to kind of open up my view point. Because if you approach dating like that, “Well, you have to be the one that pays for everything and makes all the decision and does all that, what are you closing yourself off to?”
Kim: Right, to many things. And the thing is like we’re already in a position where we’ve checked off the financial success box and the career success box. So like why do we think we need more eggs in that basket, or whatever? Like that is prohibiting us from being able to speak to those other areas that make us human. And those are emotional needs. Those are you know self-care, and doing the internal work. You know, because even us as bread winning women what if we… Our value is not depicted upon how much money we make, right?
Kim: So, if we were to lose that title and that position would we be any less date-able or worthy? So we…
Brooke: But no. Okay, but no, but because we’re women it’s somehow more acceptable to not be making a lot of money.
Kim: Yeah, but that’s BS.
Brooke: It’s ridiculous, right?
Kim: It is.
Brooke: Let’s talk about this, because I think this is something that comes up for a lot of women. Especially, like I am surrounded by women making millions of dollars, right?
Brooke: We’re all exceptions to the rules. And even in our mastermind Slack, lots of the women will say to me, “It’s so hard to find a man who will date me who doesn’t feel emasculated by the amount of money that I make. And uses the amount of money I’m making to make themselves feel unworthy. They want to be the one that’s making all the money.” And it just makes me like, “Ah!” It’s like one more reason why women don’t want to make money. It’s like an unconscious reason why we don’t want to make money.
So how can we help them with that when they’re trying to be rich and be independent and make all the money, and they’re afraid, I think for good reason, that men won’t want to date them because they don’t want to feel emasculated?
Kim: Yeah. I think it really goes back to examining, doing the internal work and examining our beliefs. And like is this a belief that we have or is this something that was passed along to us somewhere along the way between when we were growing up and how we were conditioned that we adopted as our own?
But we have a unique opportunity to… We don’t have to keep that belief, right? We don’t have to make it mean anything about a man who doesn't make as much money as we do.
Kim: Or even trying to protect the man that doesn’t make as much money as we do. We don’t have to make it a thing. But that’s part of our belief system. It’s the story that with tell our self and we believe it to our core. But we don’t have to.
Brooke: Yeah. Because let’s think about this, does a man who makes more money, is he more masculine because he makes more money than us? Like it’s so ridiculous even when you say it out loud, right?
Brooke: But we attribute… And it’s not even making money, it’s just having more money. They could have inherited all that money and we’re like, “Oh, they’re much more manly because they can pay for dinner.”
Kim: Right. And they can…
Brooke: Even if they didn’t…
Kim: And they can still be just as insecure as the guy who doesn't have anything.
Brooke: 100%. Yeah. And one of the things that’s so interesting is like when I started dating, I was like, “I want someone who makes a lot of money and someone who’s really alpha.” Right? Someone who’s like really strong. And you know, Kara said to me, she goes, “Yeah. That’s not going to work.”
Brooke: And what’s so interesting to me about wanting to be in my feminine energy is the man that I’m with right now is for sure masculine. Like, he doesn't make as much money as I do, but he is for sure the masculine entity in our relationship. In a very big way.
Brooke: And that’s something I hadn’t experienced yet. Like when you remove all the social constructs and the social ideas about what makes someone masculine, and you’re just left with two human beings…
Kim: Human beings.
Brooke: Who identify themselves as feminine and masculine. What he does for me is creates this safe space for me to relinquish control of myself and my life.
Brooke: And that is what creates a space for me to be feminine in. Not how much money he makes. Not how much he talks in a super loud voice, Not like how he controls everything.
Brooke: But how he creates that safe space. And it’s so freaking magical for me to know that. Because otherwise we’re just manipulating everything in the world. We’re like, “Okay, you make more money, you pretend that you’re the guy that makes all the money by doing the credit card.” And then somehow that’s going to make him more masculine? Like what?
Kim: Right, right, right.
Kim: It is insane. And that brings up a good point in that we need to have that space to be able to make that assessment and decide what we want our status to mean. And not just what we want it to mean in terms of the amount of money that we make, but how we want to show up in our personal lives. And like what we want to make it mean for our personal relationships. What we want to make it mean in our relationships with our family, with our children. We can assign whatever meaning we want to it.
Brooke: Yes. Yeah. This is really what I’ve done with the money. I’ve talked about it on an earlier podcast, but I think it’s worth mentioning again here. One of the ways that I like to be is generous.
Brooke: And when we go out to dinner with a group of people and the bill is 1000, $1,500 because we have so many people there. For me to pay that bill affects me not at all. I won’t even notice that in my personal budget, right? For many people, for most people paying $1,000 for dinner is ridiculous. it’s a huge expense for them.
So for me, I feel very excited and comfortable and content paying the bill whenever I can. I’d like to be able to pick up the check whenever I can. But I don’t want my man, or any other women or any other men than I’m with to feel, like we had talked about, emasculated by that or less than or unworthy.
And so one of the things that I’ve been able to do is pay the bill from a place of humbleness and generosity and gratitude. And when I am in that space, and I pay the bill from that space, I stay in my feminine energy. The whole experience for everyone is so different.
Kim: It’s different, yes. And I’m happy you said that because I don’t really think that there’s anything that us, as women, that we can do to make a man not feel emasculated.
Brooke: Right. Of course, yeah.
Kim: That’s their work that needs to be done in that sense. But speaking to the heart and the intention that we step up in as the breadwinners or as the women that make the money, that is what makes the experience different for us. That’s what assigns it a different meaning, when we’re making the decision to go ahead and pay the bill.
Kim: And not make it mean anything.
Brooke: Well, but I mean, there are instances where if we haven’t done our own self-work we could be in resentment about that, right?
Kim: Oh, absolutely.
Brooke: And so if we’re paying the bill… The example I gave before is I’m paying the bill from a sense of generosity and gratitude, and just love. Like I’m like, “Nobody else should be paying this bill.” And I even say to one of my guy friends, who makes millions of dollars. I’m just like, “Dude, when you pass me you pay the bill, right?” I kind of joke with him. I’m like, “But I’m just so happy to do this, this is just such a delight for me.”
I just love to do it from that place of just giving energy, which feels like I’m in my feminine energy. Everybody just kind of softens around that and then we’re just filled with love and gratitude. And I think if people start to expect it, or people start to feel entitled to it, or people are like, “Well, you should pay the bill, you make so much money, right?” Then we get into the resentment, right?
Brooke: Or if the people that you’re with feel bad that you’re paying the bill or like hold it against you that you’re paying the bill. So, it is one of those opportunities to kind of explore what are your thoughts and feelings about it, and do you feel resentful for it? Do you feel upset about it?
Kim: Yes, because if there is resentment and you do feel upset then that’s an indication that there is some work to be done around that.
Brooke: 100%, yeah. And if you’re coming from a place of gratitude and the friends that you’re with are like, “Look, we want to pay the bill sometimes. We want to be able to contribute too.” I do understand that. I always try and talk with them like, “Even just you offering. Even just you being in the space of wanting to contribute is like so amazing and so enough. And here’s why I’d still love to pay the bill.” But of course, I honor whatever it is.
And most of my friends are just like so lovely and so confident in that space, they’re happy to have me pay it and they’re in such gratitude. And I think as long as everyone is telling the truth and everyone is coming from a place of positive emotion you can’t go wrong.
Brooke: It’s when you’re resenting other people and then they’re feeling unworthy because they’re not paying the bill. That’s when the relation… That’s when the emasculation comes and that’s when the arguments come and the pain come. It’s like, “I’m the breadwinner and I’m holding it against you.”
Kim: Right. Because a lot of times when there is that friction between us as women and our partners, a lot of times internally things may be intact but those external influences can tend to create tension where there would be none, had it not been for the external factors.
Kim: Like, your partner could be totally fine with you picking up the bill until a comment is made.
Brooke: Interesting, yeah.
Kim: That someone says like, “Hey, you’re just going to let your woman do that?” And then here comes the questions and the spinning in his mind that was not even there before.
Brooke: Yeah, that you’re being judged or judging someone else. Yeah, it’s such an interesting… I’ve talked to so many girlfriends about this, and their male partners who aren’t making as much money and aren’t paying the bill. Like we went to a sushi restaurant with a couple, and one of my students who… Like, if you become one of my students, you’re going to make a lot of money, you’re going to have to deal with this.
Brooke: This is going to be something that you’re going to deal with. And I was talking to them about it and they just had such a beautiful perspective on it that was like, other people’s opinions about how we spend our money is so irrelevant to us that they don’t even give it a second thought. And if someone were to make a comment on it, the way that they perceived it was kind of like if someone like, “Oh, you’re going to spend that much money on a couch? Are you going to spend that much on a TV? Or who’s going to spend the money? Or who’s money are you spending?” It’s so none of their business.
Brooke: Zero of their business. That their opinion on your relationship and who should be paying and who should be making the money. Like, when you think of it that way it’s asinine that we’re even considering it or trying to lie to them about it so they’ll think that something different is going on.
Brooke: I think it’s so fascinating.
Kim: Yeah, it is fascinating because all of that drama is taking up space that could be used in a totally different way.
Brooke: Yeah. Yeah. So, what are some other things that women who are the breadwinners deal with that we may want to address?
Kim: Well, a lot of times we spend so much space, mental space, emotional space, dealing with the role of being a female breadwinner that we’re exhausted and depleted by the time we get home from work. And we don’t allow ourselves any room to like take off that cape and figure out what’s underneath the feeling of being depleted and that exhaustion.
And a lot of times having that awareness that there is something that needs to be dealt with when it comes to putting on the different hats and playing the different roles, there’s a lot of mom guilt with some of my clients, right?
Kim: Because they’re gone from out of the house a lot of time and they don’t have that relationship that they desire with their children and they’re feeling guilty about it. But why though? You know? And here comes the societal norms again, like the mother should be at home, you know, taking care of the children. And if she’s not then they’re making it mean something about them as a parent that it doesn’t have to, right?
Kim: And so we pack all this stuff, all this emotional stuff into a bag. And it’s heavy and we carry it around with us all over the place to the point where we’ve carried it so long that we don’t even realize how heavy it is anymore until we start unpacking.
Kim: And then once we start unpacking then we can assess like what is this that I have stuffed in my emotional suitcase? And what do I want to put back in here? And what do I want to just leave it alone?
Brooke: Yeah. And how do I want to feel about myself as a woman who makes a lot of money, who is also a mother, and who is also a wife, and who wants to create and be a badass in the world but also wants to be taken by her man and be in a space of vulnerability and femininity with a man? Like I feel like the breadth of knowledge that we need and the self-awareness that we need in order to be able to be in the roles and get what we want is tremendous. Right?
Kim: It is.
Brooke: And I do think we are the trend setters of that. We are the ones setting the examples now.
Kim: Absolutely, yes.
Brooke: Like how do we do it? I personally believe... I want to hear what you think about this, but I personally believe it’s not one of the other. There is that middle ground where we can be the breadwinners and the good mothers and the good wives. We just can’t do every single thing in every single role without exhaustion. Yeah.
Kim: Right. I agree. I agree. Like, we have to find that balance that allows us to check off those boxes and have that internal fulfillment in a way that speaks to us. It has to be internal, like our motivation for it has to be internal. The work that we do, like our mindset around it has to be motivated by us where we feel internally validated. So that whatever other factors that we don’t have any control over don’t affect how we end up feeling about that job that we’re doing balancing the roles that we have.
Brooke: Yeah. The way that I’ve been doing this most recently, and throughout my life, because I’m a recovering people pleaser, is when you live a life that’s extraordinary and you have different roles and you want to have that breadth of experience in your life, you will be disappointing someone.
Brooke: At any given time. You’re either going to be disappointing your boss, or your clients, or your kids, or your husband, or yourself.
Brooke: And I think most of the time we try and do with this with limiting the amount of energy we put into disappointing other people. And we take on the burden of the disappointment, which as you were mentioning before leads to the incredible exhaustion that we experience because we’re constantly trying to make everyone happy. And we know what we want for ourselves, we know what we desire for ourselves, but we’re not wanting to disappoint anyone. And that’s the price we’re going to have to pay.
So, for me I’ve never wanted to disappoint my kids, I always want to be a super hero to them. I never want to disappoint my clients, right? I want them to think that I’m an amazing coach and I’m here for them. And the time I was married, and now with my boyfriend, I always want my significant other to think that I’m a goddess and that I’m always there for them, right?
So it’s like… And at the end of the day when you try and do that for everyone else, you’re the one that ends up feeling so depleted. And so I think if we can talk about what is it that I most want and how can I disappoint myself the least, you’re going to end up being so much more available to everyone else in your life as well.
Kim: Yes. Yes. Yes, that is absolutely true. And knowing that you can give yourself permission to not disappoint yourself, like there’s nothing wrong with that.
Brooke: That's a hard one though.
Kim: It’s very difficult. It’s very difficult.
Brooke: Because listen, someone’s going to think I’m not a good mom. Someone’s going to think I’m not a good coach. Someone’s going to think I’m not a good lover. Someone’s going to think I’m not a good significant other or whatever. And we want to control what everyone thinks about us.
Kim: Yeah, but the price that we pay for that is that we’re being super hard on ourselves.
Kim: And that’s totally counterproductive to the result that we’re trying to have in pleasing other people, and in turn not depleting our own selves. Like we have to be on the list somewhere.
Brooke: Yeah. And I do think, and you kind of referenced this earlier, like taking the cape off. I do think we have to acknowledge that we aren’t super woman.
Kim: We’re not.
Brooke: And we don’t want to be. We don’t want to be super woman.
Kim: I don’t.
Brooke: You know what I want to be? I want to be this human that has some needs and has some personal desires that’s going to end up making other people think that I might be selfish. And when I make peace with that, when I sign up for that versus signing up to be a super hero, my life is so much better and I’m so much happier. And other people are disappointed but they acknowledge that I’m a human.
Kim: Yes. And one, is sustainable.
Kim: Being human. And the other isn’t.
Brooke: Yeah. It’s not sustainable to be a super hero you all.
Kim: It’s not.
Brooke: I found that out, you just run out of fuel.
Kim: You do.
Kim: You do. And then what happens when you’re running on fumes and you run out of fuel?
Brooke: You give up on your dreams is what you do.
Kim: You give up on your dreams.
Kim: And then that creates so much drama because a lot of us are already walking around thinking like, “Oh my gosh, I can’t take a break because the minute I take a break...” Like you can envision your family’s belongings sitting out on the curb or something bad is going to happen.”
Brooke: Right. Right, yeah.
Kim: But it’s not true, like you cannot keep up the super woman role perpetually.
Kim: You just can’t. It’s just not going to work.
Kim: And it doesn’t have to be hard. It doesn’t have to be difficult. You don’t have to work harder in order to have that fulfillment that you are searching for. Right?
Kim: You can take some time out to do the things that refill your tank. To do the work that creates space for you to be able to not disappoint yourself and put yourself on your priority list. And without something bad happening.
Brooke: Yes. That’s so good. And I think having the support of a coach is really helpful because I think, you know, someone like you. You’re a doctor, which of course puts you in such high esteem, and people have such high expectations, and the money that you’re making, right, on top of all of that. And I think that we step into those roles and we feel proud of those roles, and we can live into them and also acknowledge that we’re a hot mess.
Brooke: It’s like, “Yes, I’m a doctor and a hot mess.”
Kim: And a hot mess.
Brooke: Yeah, I’m a CEO of a huge organization and a hot mess. And it’s all okay and I embrace all of it. I don't try to pretend that I’m not those other things.
Brooke: And that’s when I can soften and be fueled by positive emotion instead of negative emotion.
Kim: Exactly. And I love the word that you used, like being softened. Because that goes along, that speaks to being vulnerable and embracing that. It’s not a bad thing. You know, it’s not a bad trait. And it’s something that is really needed for us as women, as powerful women even. Yes, we acknowledge that we’re a badass but we also acknowledge that sometimes we need a hug.
Brooke: Yeah, right.
Kim: Sometimes we need support. Sometimes we need a shoulder to lean on. Sometimes we don’t have it all together and that’s okay.
Brooke: So, let’s talk a little bit about this in terms of our significant other relationships. Because I have seen in myself and in others, that when we don’t soften into those relationships, when we don’t allow for our own femininity in those relationships that often we start being harsh. Right?
Brooke: And so we may need a hug, or we may need a connection, or we may need someone to kind of take over for a while. And instead of asking for that from a vulnerable place, because we’re so in our hard driving energy, we just yell at the person. Right?
Brooke: And so I call it having feelings at you instead of with you, right?
Brooke: So here’s my feelings and I’m just chucking them at your face, right? And it’s kind of like solve this and solve this and solve this. And what I really have noticed what I really need in that moment is just like I just need to be loved. Like, I just want to be in the space of connectedness, and softness, and pain maybe, and disappointment and fear and vulnerability. And I want to be able to let go of the reins and the control and just be in that space. But also remain a powerful independent woman.
And that’s the trick, right? Can I let go and drop into that space and maintain my power without pretending and get what I want from the relationship. I think the answer is yes. But I think our part, as women, is being able to let go of the harshness. Have you found that too, yeah?
Kim: I have, absolutely. I’ve worked with clients who’ve literally had the same six to six schedule as their one-year-olds, right?
Kim: Like they wake up at six am, go to be at six pm, don’t ask them any questions afterwards, they don’t want to have any conversation. They don’t want to hear about their partner’s day.
Brooke: Yeah. Right.
Kim: That’s it, they’re depleted. But in those times, you’re right. And I don’t know if part of the component is like you’re still in that CEO, super woman mode when you’re at home with your partner so you’re barking orders.
Brooke: Yeah, totally.
Kim: Or you’re being harsh. But the thing is, I think the key is to take a step back and to figure out what is underneath that emotion because it can’t be harsh all the time. Like, that’s not even part of the fifty-fifty experience, right?
Brooke: Exactly. That’s coming from thoughts, which the thoughts that I’ve noticed for me is I have to do everything, I have to take care of everything, I’m the one in charge, everything’s on my… I need to do it.
Kim: It’s all on me.
Brooke: And listen, nobody told me this.
Brooke: It’s not like my partner is saying this or even saying… It’s because I don’t ask for help.
Brooke: I don’t communicate. It’s not even that I don’t communicate. I don’t even know that what I need is just a cuddle, or some rest, or some space, or some love. Right?
Kim: And a lot of times like once we do take a pause and take a step back and tune into our internal selves we can say like, “You know, I’m not really upset.” We can identify what it is, like, “I’m not really upset, I’m actually feeling afraid right now.”
Kim: Or, “I’m actually feeling sad. I’m actually feeling a little bit anxious.” But the tricky part is that by the time we take that pause and that the step back and the light bulb goes off we’ve attacked our partner so much and so they don’t want to hear it.
Brooke: Yes. Right.
Kim: They’re like, “Okay, but I feel beat up now. So it’s difficult for me to give you that hug because I know that that’s what’s underneath because you have voiced that to me. But what has been displayed is attack, attack, attack.”
Brooke: Yeah. Which is, of course, what most of us are trying to create with men that are feeling emasculated and like they don’t know which way to go or how to handle anything, right?
Brooke: And so when we can make those pauses… And for me, listen, I am the most feminist of the feminist women, but I also want to be a feminine feminist too. Like that’s important to me and so I think feminine power is the strongest power in the universe, right?
Brooke: And so I don’t want to be a masculine feminist. I don’t want to use violent energy or penetrating energy to try and become more feminine. And that’s been a trick for me, right? To try and negotiate that. And so I think for me, when I’m able to ask myself, “What’s the matter?”
Brooke: Like just ask myself, “What’s the matter love? What is it?” Immediately I drop in to my feminine and I think that I’m mad at this person but really what I am is I’m just in a space of stress, or I’m in a space of frustration. I’m having lots of thoughts at them. And when I drop all the thoughts at them I can just be like, “Uh, ultimately what I want to do is just relax and be soft and get cuddles.”
It’s so crazy for me to like embrace that part of me where I don’t necessarily have to be the one that’s doing the care. And I’ll tell you this, like when I ask my man for like some strength or some connection, that’s when he’s at his best for me. But it’s hard for me to give that opportunity when I’m in my having feelings at you mode.
Kim: Yeah, and I think it takes practice and awareness.
Brooke: Yeah, totally.
Kim: It really does.
Brooke: And forgiveness. Like self-forgiveness for being such a badass, sometimes angry woman.
Kim: Right? Because that’s the muscle that we flex so much until it’s like our default. It’s our go to, like we can do it with our eyes closed, forwards, backwards, side to side, without even thinking about it. But that opposite end of the spectrum is what takes a little bit of work because that’s not what we tend to default to.
Brooke: Yeah. And even the work that you do just by helping people recognize what their thoughts are in those moments is so surprising, right? Because you think that the thoughts are useful, and you think that they’re true, and you think that you’re justified. And it’s like, “Do you want to be right or do you want to be connected? Do you want to feel love or do you want to feel resentment?” And as soon as I put myself into a model, as soon as I understand what’s going on in my brain, it changes everything for me. And immediately I feel more relaxed, more relieved, more receiving, more in that space of softness.
And what I have found for my personal life in the past year is it’s made me a more successful businesswoman instead of a less successful businesswoman. And I think a lot of us think if we let up on that gas, that forward momentum masculine penetrating gas, that we will lose our edge. The opposite is true by bringing in my powerful feminine energy I’ve been able to create an environment that has produced more for me with that balance. Yeah.
Kim: Right. Right. And that’s a point that I wanted to speak to, in acknowledging the differences between our experiences and the experiences that our mothers might have had, right?
Kim: They weren’t all right and they weren’t all wrong, right? There are pearls and tools and words of wisdom that we can take and apply to our current situations without having that dichotomy of being in a different position versus being a stay-at-home mom and not being the primary breadwinner versus being the breadwinner.
Kim: There are still traits and characteristics that they displayed that we can embrace and that can serve us.
Brooke: Yeah. Yeah, that we might want to embrace.
Brooke: And not feel guilty about.
Brooke: And not feel like we’re letting other women down because we want to embrace that primal feeling within inside of us.
Brooke: And that’s been so fun for me. Like, this journey that I’m on right now is really discovering the parts of me that I did ignore because my mom said, “Don’t ever be dependent on a man.” Right?
Kim: Yeah. Right.
Brooke: And so now I’m kind of exploring the areas where I do kind of want to try out being dependent on a man in certain areas.
Kim: Right, in certain areas.
Brooke: And that feels so counter intuitive.
Kim: No, but the difference is though like you’re making a conscious choice, like it’s your decision so that’s why it feels different. You know, versus it being something that you don’t have a choice in the matter.
Brooke: Yes, that is so good. That's so true.
Kim: Yeah, that’s what makes all the difference.
Brooke: And that’s what makes me feel more powerful.
Brooke: In the surrender on purpose versus being forced to surrender, right?
Kim: Yeah. Yeah, yeah.
Brooke: And that’s where it’s like all these ideas of consent and surrendering on purpose and creating dependence because you want to versus like what you’re saying. Yes, that’s exactly it, right? Being forced into those areas where then you have no control and your voice doesn’t matter.
Brooke: The opposite, your voice matters, yeah.
Brooke: So, good. I love this work that you’re doing in the world. I think it is so needed right now and I think that many of us, including me right now, are a bit lost with it and so, so much of the work that I’ve been doing and the studying… You know, everything I do in my own personal evolvement, the whole time I’m doing it I’m like figuring out how I’m going to teach it, right?
Brooke: So this conversation is just such perfect timing for kind of where I’m going in my own personal evolution. And so many of the women that have worked with me that have started making millions of dollars are now in this new identity as a very rich woman trying to figure out how to navigate the world in a way that feels right to them. And it’s not the same for every woman.
Brooke: It’s different but I think that… And you know we’re referring to anyone who identifies themselves as a woman who wants to be in the feminine energy more, I think is feeling maybe as lost as I have been feeling. And so I think the work that you’re doing with them and helping them become self-aware and understand, “Okay, what if this is a social construct that’s maybe outdated and ridiculous that I want to completely ignore? What if this is my personal evolution? And what if this is part of my biochemistry that I want to embrace and really not feel bad about?”
Kim: Right. And lean all the way into it.
Brooke: Absolutely. So tell me a little bit about your practice and how you work with people and how people can find you.
Kim: Sure. So I can be found at thatsgoldenwithdrkim.com. And I couch in a group coaching setting.
Kim: My program is 12 weeks long and it’s called Go from Painfully Surviving to Thriving in Just 12 Weeks.
Brooke: Love it. Love it.
Kim: And I will start to launch my program in February of 2021.
Brooke: Okay, cool.
Kim: And it will consist of 12 weeks of group coaching, as well as bi-weekly one-on-one coaching with me. And I love the aspect of the group coaching for my particular clients because I feel that our journeys can be isolating because the topic is so taboo.
Brooke: Yes. Yes.
Kim: That being in a group setting is healing and helpful for us to have those open conversations and to have that awareness.
Brooke: Yeah, because I think sometimes when you’re experiencing shame because you’re making a lot of money, or you’re making more money than your partner, nobody cares.
Brooke: They’re like, “Poor you, you’re making so much money.” Right? But when you’re with other women who are in that same position, we can have conversations about them in a way that I think feels validating and encouraging.
Brooke: In order to explore it even more, because otherwise you tuck it away back in the closet because you’re feeling so much shame about it and you can’t make any progress with it.
Kim: Right, because you never deal with it.
Brooke: Yeah. It’s so good. That’s so awesome. Okay, so if you all want to work with other amazing bread winning women and get some help with this, you definitely want to go… Say your URL one more time.
Kim: Golden just like the color, G-O-L-D-E-N.
Brooke: Just like the color, that’s your last name too.
Kim: Yes, it is.
Brooke: You of course can find all this information in the show notes. Thank you so much. This conversation was so good. I feel like we’re just at the beginning of this, we’re just opening the door. So I’ll be super excited to get the response and see how other women are feeling about this, but we for sure are not alone. Me and you and all of your clients, right? We’re going to figure this out in a way that serves all women and all humanity so this is just the beginning.
Kim: Yeah, and the women that are coming after us, that’s...
Brooke: That’s exactly right.
Brooke: All of our daughters that are coming after us, we want to set it up for them to be successful and also be truly authentic in who they want to be.
Brooke: So thank you so much for coming on the podcast.
Kim: Thank you. Thank you for having me.
Brooke: Have a beautiful week everyone. We’ll talk to you soon, bye.
Kim: Thank you.
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