Episode 218 | April 28, 2020

How to Embrace Change with Monica Berg

A Personal Note From Orion

Welcome to another super inspiring episode of Stellar Life podcast. This episode will make your day and will give you some tools to handle fear because fear is no option. It will help to rethink love. It will help you with your daily schedule in quarantine. And it will help you to feel happier, stronger, and kinder.

My guest, Monica Berg, is an international speaker, spiritual thought leader, Chief Communications Officer of The Kabbalah Center, and author of Rethink Love and Fear Is Not An Option. A self-proclaimed change junkie, Monica shows individuals how to create a life that not only feels like it’s working but most importantly, a life in which they are living and loving as the powerful fulfilled person they’ve always wanted to be.

I’m sure you’re going to get a lot out of this conversation and it will just expand your heart. It’s going to make you feel happier, stronger, and more powerful. Without further ado, on to the show.


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About Today’s Show

Monica Berg, welcome to Stellar Life podcast. Thank you for being here.

Rethink Love by Monica Berg

Thank you for having me. I’m excited.

Yeah, I’m very excited. We have really juicy topics in today’s show, and you’re the perfect person to share your wisdom with us. Before we start, why don’t you share a little bit about yourself and your background, so people will get to know you a little bit more?

Well, I am so many things at this point because I’m somebody who never feels like they’ve arrived. As soon as I have reached a certain point, I’m always looking for what’s next. I’m interested in change and in radical kindness. I try to spread this information, the wisdom of Kabbalah spirituality to help people grow, change, and also be curious so that we can all live our best lives. When each person is doing what they love and living the life that they really desire, you have happy humans; and happy humans make for a better world.

Oh, so profound. You were born into this kabbalistic family. What is Kabbalah and what was it like growing up?

Fear Is Not An Option by Monica Berg

Actually, I didn’t grow up into a kabbalistic family. That’s why when I did find Kabbalah, it resonated so deeply with me that I never looked away. Like most people, I grew up in a happy home and with good parents, but I didn’t have a lot of answers to life’s big questions, like why is there pain and suffering? Why are we here? What is the bigger picture? What are we supposed to do? What are we supposed to chase? Where’s the manual for living? I just didn’t have any of those answers. When I stumbled across Kabbalah when I was 17, it was the first time that things finally made sense. People finally had answers to the questions that I could never get answered.

For those who don’t really know what Kabbalah is, it’s an ancient wisdom that teaches between the material and the non-material world by using the tools of this ancient wisdom—which talks about expanding consciousness, growth and transformation, different incarnations, and cause and effect, how to be proactive instead of reactive. There’s so much information. You could study for an entire lifetime and still be a beginner. In the pursuit of that, really understanding and making sense of challenges that there’s real growth in that, that is what it means to be living Kabbalah and studying this wisdom.

I apologize. I just assumed that because your last name is Berg that you’re just a part of the family.

I am now. I married into the family.

Cool. So I wasn’t that far away. Good. It wasn’t that far-fetched. What is it like being a part of this environment where everybody is so conscious and has those really beautiful values?

It’s really amazing. I see it and feel it more in the time that we find ourselves within this pandemic, that it’s such a sense of community and unity. You never really feel like you’re alone. The support system, being able to speak with and feel like you’re surrounded by people who are speaking the same language and who have the same consciousness. At least if they’re not there yet, have a desire for growth and transformation. That’s everything because you are your environment. To be able to be around other people that are seeking the same things that I am is so rewarding.

Real growth is understanding that every challenge holds a silver lining. Click To Tweet

It is. You are very lucky to be a part of a community, but there are a lot of people that feel very much alone. They are alone in their homes, especially elderly people. They don’t have many people reaching out to them or even reaching out at all. How can someone deal with that fear of loneliness and dealing with loneliness itself?

I see that everywhere. Also, a lot of people can even be in a relationship or be in a marriage and feel very alone and isolated. Before this time where we weren’t quarantined and we weren’t secluded in our homes, we could really have escaped. We could go out with our friends, we could go drinking, we could find all other kinds of things that would distract us, so we wouldn’t have to face the reality we’re in, especially if it’s ones that we don’t like. I think that loneliness is something that everybody feels, just on different degrees. 

I always say this, though. There’s such an opportunity, especially now that you will always be lonely in life—whether you’re married or not, single, divorced, widowed or whatever—if you don’t really have a relationship with yourself because that is the longest relationship you will ever have. I think this is a time that if you’re finding yourself in this space that is so uncomfortable to really lean into it and learn to love yourself. More than that, learn to like yourself. This is a time for self-care and self-interest more than ever. You can’t escape it, so why not take advantage of what’s here?

There are so many ways to do that. It starts with honoring your voice or just listening to what your desires are. Usually, we have shame in even expressing what we want, to eating healthy, to listening to music you like, and even dancing around the house. There are so many ways that you can become a friend to yourself, but first, you have to be willing to do that. Stop the judgmental thoughts and the negative belief systems that we have. There’s a lot of things that we need to undo, but there’s a lot of things that we can create as well.

How do you stop the negative voices?

It starts with a decision. You have to decide that your desire to connect to your true source—yourself, your essence, your soul—is far greater than any noise, really go back and look back to where those belief systems started. Were they things that were impressed upon you as a child? Were they your mother’s belief systems or your teachers’ or people you were around growing up? Where did these negative thoughts start? Somewhere along the lines, you learn to not love yourself, which means that you can learn to love yourself again. First, I would really pinpoint and say “Okay, these are the things that come up 10–15 times a day. These are negative thoughts.” Catch the thought, stop, challenge the thought, and then just release it. Just like that. It doesn’t even have to be more complicated than that.

Beautiful. What about dealing with fear? You have a book that is called Fear Is Not An Option, so you have a lot to say about fear. So many people are experiencing fear. I experienced fear, we all do. It’s fear of not having the next client or losing our business. I’m scared for my mom in Israel. She’s 74 and alone in her house. I’m very scared for her. There is this anxiety of like, “Oh my God, I can’t even take a flight to visit her.” We create all these pictures in our minds of very negative futures. What are some tools that we can use to deal with that?

Well, let me ask you a question. By you fearing all these things, is that changing the situation?

No, of course not.

Right. So, what is this fear of doing? First of all, ask yourself if I let go of this fear, what’s going to happen? How likely are these fears to come true? Because the issue here is that we have all lived in a false sense of control. The biggest fear that all of us have is the unknowable, that we’re not able to know what’s going to happen next, and that feels really uncomfortable for all of us. We’d like to feel a sense of control, but in reality, we never really do have control. You never know what’s going to happen day-to-day, but before this pandemic, we felt a false sense that we did. 

It’s this consciousness that needs to be glaring and that is when we fear the uncomfortable, the unknowable, or the uncontrollable, we let fear steal our joy, happiness, and today. I don’t know about you, but I’m not willing to give up all my days on a fear that may or may never come true. It’s just a waste of time and it does nothing to change the situation. By looking fear straight in the face and say, “I am not giving you energy.” Instead, think good thoughts about your mom. She’s healthy, she is safe. She is in Israel, she’s far, but thank God, we have the technology. You can FaceTime, you can Skype. Send positive thoughts and positive energy instead of feeding the fear. That’s the biggest thing of all. There are some tools. 

Change is necessary to become your best self.

The one thing is that when fear comes, stop and ask yourself, “What is this fear trying to show me?” And then shift your consciousness and just say, “Fear is not an option,” just like that. We are so powerful, and often we don’t realize how powerful we are. We don’t exercise that power, but this is the time to do it.

I just love that. I love saying fear is not an option. Sharing this with you was true, but also to get your knowledge and your wisdom around that. I’ve been doing that. I have been experiencing the fear, dealing with fear, sending light and love, getting into gratitude for what I have, and the fact that we do have technologies. One thing that I do with my mom is I send her videos. I have a young baby and I send her a video of us every day, and tons of photos because I want her to feel full and connected. We speak twice a day and my sister—

That’s your reality, no fear. This is what’s real. That’s your truth.

Yeah, that’s my truth. My truth is that I am looking for what’s good and I’m seeing my fears. I’m acknowledging my fears. I don’t let my fear take over, but I do acknowledge it.

Of course, you have to acknowledge it, identify it, and then release it. We don’t need to hold on to our fears. We don’t need to learn to cope with them. We don’t need to learn to live with them. We don’t need to learn to manage them. Identify them and release them. Imagine that we weren’t in this pandemic right now. 

If you walked around every day worrying about your mother’s health, why would you do that? Her health is good today. It makes no sense if you break it down like that. It’s the same thing with this. She is home, she is safe, she is healthy. That’s what you need to hold on to, not the fear of what could be; because if you want to live like that, believe me, you can find a thousand things to be fearful of every day of your life for the rest of your life.

Right. I just read an article today. They said that people that are more educated and have more tools have an easier time dealing with what’s happening because they like expanding their horizons and they are more flexible in times of change. Some of us learn more about psychology, spirituality, and change. Some of us, a little less. I’m sure we all have the capacity to deal with that. This is why this type of show is so important for people to remember because it’s a remembrance that they are not alone, that there are some spiritual tools that they can use, and they can shift their perspective, like you said, “What is fear?”

That’s so interesting, the article. I think that there is truth there. but I also want to add. I don’t like it to be like, “Oh, those who are more educated versus those who aren’t.” It’s about, of course, expanding your consciousness. Those who are more aware and have more access to information are going to have a bigger picture, but it’s also and more importantly, about being a victim. 

I think many people live their lives with stories of victimization, right and left. Right away, if that’s how you’re used to thinking, you’re going to be in a situation right now. Victimization is, “Oh, why is this happening to me? I don’t want to be at home. I don’t want to be stuck. I want my freedom. This is not fair. Why are people dying?” Maybe there’s all of that, we can feel all of that, but it’s not going to behoove you to put energy there. Instead, look for the opportunity in what we don’t like and enjoy. There’s always a silver lining.

Your energy goes where your focus goes. If you focus on what’s bad, this is what your life is going to look like. You’re already at home. There was nowhere to go and you’re stuck with your own thoughts, so better make them good ones.

Honestly, I’m kind of enjoying this time in a way. Of course, not all of the people who are suffering, but just this moment to slow down and to pause. I’m so type A, by the way, and I have routine and organization. For me to be able to have not any external pressure, and therefore I’m not really having any internal pressure, I’m naturally still going to be organized. I have a schedule, I have four kids, and I’m managing it. But I’m also stopping to look out the window more, feel the sun on my back, and really pause and listen to what my children are saying, instead of like, “Hurry, we’ve got to do this. We have that next appointment.” 

We like to feel a sense of control, but in reality, we never really have control of anything beyond what's present. Click To Tweet

Right now, I’m just filled with gratitude and appreciation in a way that I haven’t been in a very long time before this happened. That’s what I mean by a silver lining. There’s always something that you can see differently, see better, live better than you had. Like we said at the beginning of our conversation, for those that are lonely, were you lonely before this happened? Of course, it’s exasperated now, but there was probably something that you always needed to give energy to and pay attention to. Now, you have the time to actually work through it.

That’s right. I feel the same where I started taking regular walks with my baby. Now, I’m walking longer and I’m really enjoying the sun. I enjoy walking with him. Also, it seems like my husband is getting to actually know him better and play more with him now that he has a little more time with him. These are really beautiful things. Actually, I feel very creative lately. I feel like there was not enough time in the day for me to do everything that I want to do in this quarantine.

I know, exactly. That’s just a different mindset, but it’s great we’re talking about this. So, your listeners can say, “Okay, well, where can I apply that to my life?” If you look for it, you will find it.

I’m sure there are some moms that are listening to you right now and to me, and they’re like, “What are you talking about? My kids are driving me crazy. This is nuts. I have one kid, two kids, three kids, four kids in the house. I don’t know how to manage it.” So why don’t you help us with managing schedules with kids and how you do it?

Well, I actually just recently wrote a blog about parenting in the time of Coronavirus. I think that like with anything. If we are going to beat it with, they’ve got to cover all the material, they have to do all the homework that’s assigned, and we put all this pressure, of course, it’s not going to be fun, but there are so many ways your children can learn. 

For me the other day, I was at my desk. My youngest came and she just sat on my lap, put her iPad on top of my computer, and showed me something that they were doing for school, like this singing thing. I stopped everything. I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed that because there are so many times of the day when she was at school and I missed her. 

I thought, “Wow, she spends almost more time away from me than with me during the school week.” Instead, I’m using every opportunity as a learning. When I’m exercising, my kids are exercising with me. We’re learning in different ways. We’re baking together, we’re doing math by looking at measurements on the measuring cup.

I think it’s about not being hard on yourself, not trying to be perfect, not judging yourself and comparing yourself to what other mothers are doing, and just say, “Okay, what does learning look like in my home? What does it feel like?” and just enjoy it. Again, lean into it and see how you can make this a fun opportunity for learning but without all of this pressure. It’s only you that is putting it on yourself and your family; there’s nobody else doing that.

That’s right. Let go of the pressure and give it to God. Give it to the angel, give it to your spiritual guide and just say, “Please take this pressure away. Take this load away.” I want to be free because freedom starts in your mind. You can be at home and feel free, or you can be out and about and feel like you’re in prison.

Exactly. It doesn’t really matter if they do one math worksheet or all four on that same night. At the end of the day, what is the big picture here? They’re going to remember how we reacted to the situation, and that’s how they’re going to learn to deal with stress or discomfort or change. For me, by the way, that’s the bigger schooling that’s happening here than anything else.

I had a conversation with my friend. She’s very active, and very much all fun. She’s got her daughters at home. We’re on the phone and she’s telling her daughter, “Please connect the dots. You have to connect the dots.” The little girl was trying; she couldn’t do it. She was like, “She can’t connect the dots.” She was so hysterical about it, and I was like, “Maybe your daughter is not the type of kid that likes to connect the dots. She’s so talented and such a light in other ways.” 

For those that desire to find their highest self, to achieve their dreams and to live a life of joy and fulfillment, fear is not an option.

She’s like, “But she won’t be able to finish her assignment.” I was like, “What? Does it matter that she won’t be able?” She’s like, “What about next year? We don’t know what’s about next year. Right here and right now, just look at her. She’s such a beautiful light. She just doesn’t like to connect the dots and that’s fine. Not all kids are really good at connecting the dots. Some kids like to draw outside the box and that’s okay. She’s probably a genius.” So, I calmed her down.

I don’t know if you found this, but it’s been great to watch how my daughter, the youngest, especially, is learning where she gets frustrated and when she doesn’t. Because sometimes you just have these parent-teacher conferences, and you get a little window. It’s mostly based on their opinion, but I like that I have a front-row seat now into her learning. Again, it’s really just your perspective and your perception of what’s happening that’s going to make or break this for you.

Do you have a schedule? What’s a day in your life look like these days?

Yeah, I have a schedule. The best part of the schedule, by the way, is I’m not using an alarm clock for the first time maybe in like 25 years. That feels awesome. We have breakfast together, it’s super casual. We listen to music, we say our prayers together. I love that time. Then their sessions start with their school, their school’s pretty organized and I’m top of it. I start working then, and then I work out, and they have lunch. We were in and out all day with each other. I’m able to write and start working on my next book. 

I’m just being super flexible, but there’s a schedule from eight to three. Even with that, there’s a lot of movement in it. There’s nothing rigid, like, “Okay, this is what we’re going to do now. We’re going to play this way.” It’s really just being open to how the day goes and following somewhat of a structured day for sure.

It seems to me like you’re able to stretch time because you’re managing four kids, you’re managing your business and your cooking. How?

Well, we all participate. My husband’s really a great partner, too. We have a rhythm, I guess that’s the best way to describe it. We have a rhythm, and everybody knows what’s expected of them. Also, when one of us needs something, we’re able to be vulnerable, and ask for it, and ask for help without any judgment. That’s taken my husband and I (we’ve been married) 24 years, so my kids now have learned that model, too. That’s why it flows like that.

That’s beautiful. Congratulations.

Thank you.

Unfortunately, the reality is that some people are going to get divorced after this, and some people are going to be stronger than ever. In some cases, unfortunately, there is more domestic abuse. Every household is dealing with a different thing, but I think, for the most part, most of us will be very strong coming out of this. To make sure we are, what are some tips that you do to stay connected with your husband, to share more love, to reduce stress?

I think that the ones that will find themselves wanting to divorce after this, their relationships probably weren’t very strong in the first place. They also neglected to give it attention, care, and love, not just to each other but to the relationship itself. We tend to put a lot of emphasis and energy into our careers, into having children, into really everything else, but when it comes to relationships, we put a lot of energy into finding the one. Once we do, we think it’s going to be effortless and seamless. This love will be like it is forever and we’re going to be friends forever. Of course, like anything, if you don’t put effort and energy into it consistently, then it’s going to be neglected.

For those who still have that spark and do love each other, and the relationship’s okay but not great, now could be a really good time to reboot it. Some of that is to awaken appreciation for one another. It’s both in thought and expression. I think very often one of the first things that happen when people get married or when they’ve been together for a while is that we lose appreciation for the other person. When you lose appreciation, it’s harder to access the love for the person. You might still love them, but you won’t access them. We’re really good at fooling ourselves. We might think, “Oh, we don’t feel the same way that we do.” 

Very often the process is the purpose. Click To Tweet

In my book, I give an example of that with my oldest. When he became a teenager, I found myself losing a little appreciation. I wasn’t really aware of it even but I remembered when he was born how much I appreciated him—his smell, the feeling of his head cradled in my hands, the way his hair stood straight up, his soft skin on my neck. And then when they become teenagers, and they get a mouth on them. They talk back to you and they judge you for a minute because it’s a normal process of life. I remember, I didn’t feel the love. Now, of course, I knew I’d love him exactly the same. His soul is the same at age three as it was at 13, but my ability to access it was different. The same thing happens in romantic relationships. 

I would say one is appreciation, and the other is to express intimacy. That’s not just sexually, that’s really paying attention to one another. If they want to share something with you, be really interested. Share with them because as we change and evolve as people individually, if we don’t go back as a couple and share that process, it’s really easy to change separately and then just be side by side. Before you know it, you’re just roommates. Those are just two, but I have endless; I can go on and on about this.

Keep going. I like that. These are meaningful.

A big one is to be available to one another, which is connected to intimacy. Also, laughter and levity. If you think about when you first were dating, it was fun. Yes, we always talk about marriage being work, and people equate work with being hard work, miserable, and really painful. I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about effort when I say work, but also make sure you reintroduce that magic ingredient that you had at the beginning. It has to be fun also. Especially now, even if you’re stuck in your home, you can have date nights. You can cook together, you can make a cocktail that’s something different and new, you can sit and read to each other or read together, dance, do karaoke. It’s endless. Again, it all starts with desire and then effort.

I want to get a karaoke machine. It sounds so much fun.

Actually, there are apps. You can do it on your computer. If you want to take it to the next level, you need a machine, but you could even just download it. They have songs and things you could do. It is fun. It’s really fun.

I want a microphone though. I have to have a microphone. These are amazing. A couple of days ago was my birthday.

Happy birthday.

Thank you. I had the best birthday. I baked an incredible chocolate cake and I’m not a baker, but it was so good, still so good. Every time I open the refrigerator, she’s like, “Please eat me, eat me. I’m so sweet and delicious.” I’m like, “No, too much sugar,” and then I eat a big piece of cake. My husband was so sweet. He went out. He battled Coronavirus and went to a few supermarkets and got me balloons. He couldn’t find flowers, so he went to another place and he found flowers. He came home and it was so sweet with the balloons, the flowers, and the card. I baked the cake and he decorated the cake. It was just so much fun. 

I’m a new mom. I’m madly in love with my baby, and then I give my baby more attention than I give my husband for sure. One of my intentions for my birthday was I want to make him feel more loved. I think it’s really important for our men at this time. Women are more patient. We have this capability of calming down the house. We can stir the house or we can calm down the house. It’s really important for us to be there for our husbands and to have their backs because they are very stressed these times. We need to be there for them and we need to be more loving, kinder than ever even if we are stressed. If we are stressed, we need to handle our own stress, so we can be better for others.

Every cloud has a silver lining even if it’s as gloomy as what we are collectively dealing with right now.

Absolutely. What’s really interesting also is that the way that men and women understand intimacy is very different. For women, we connect, looking at each other eye-to-eye and having a conversation. That makes us feel really loved and connected. For men, honestly, it’s much more sexual. They feel closeness by being able to be physically intimate with us.

Like you mentioned, when you have the baby now, of course, it’s so natural for first-time mothers, especially, all of the attention goes. You feel like you’ve never loved in this way before. This baby is just everything. It’s easy to kind of neglect the person that helps the baby come into the world and because men don’t really express themselves, necessarily. Some men do, but for the most part, they’re not that in touch with their feelings to be able to say, “Listen, I feel neglected,” or, “I want to go back to how we were,” whatever it is. It is very important to understand that for men, they do need that kind of feeling and that connection. 

The other thing is there’s a lot of studies that have been done where, when women want to connect they look face-to-face, but men, if you’ve ever seen teenagers, I remember the first time I saw this with my oldest son. He had a bunch of boys over and they were playing video games. They were just next to each other playing games, not even looking at each other. I remember thinking well, they can all just be alone. I don’t need to have a room full of boys. It was smelly and stinky, the room was dirty. They can all go to their own houses.

But then, I realized actually that’s how they were connecting. It was by sitting side-by-side, working on something together. That made them feel really united and I think that part of our responsibility as women. It is man’s responsibility to know us this way as well as to see that we really understand and experience intimacy in different ways, just by our sexes alone.

Beautiful. Before we started this interview, we had a little chat. You told me that you are a “change junkie” because I asked you how you are handling everything. You were like, “Easy, I’m used to change. I’m a change junkie.” What is a change junkie and how can I become one? Give me the little change drug. I want it.

I do call myself a change junkie. I wasn’t always this way. As I mentioned, I’m a Virgo, I’m very type A. I love routines.

My son is a Virgo.

Oh really, when’s his birthday?

September 5th.

I’m the 10th. Yeah, so I understand. I decided to really embrace change when I realized there’s no other choice. Change is the law of life. Either going forward or backward, the only thing you get to decide is which way you go. By the way, we all love the idea of change. Everybody’s like, “Oh, I want my life to change.” We create change, we cut our hair, we want to move to a different neighborhood, or we get a different car, but the truth of the matter is change is very uncomfortable. 

Most people run away from change because their first experience with change was not necessarily something they wanted. Maybe their parents got divorced and now they had this new change of having to live in two households. Our first experiences with change usually aren’t great. But when you realize that there’s no other alternative, you can actually lean into change and you can become a change junkie. By any situation that happens in our lives, you derive meaning and purpose from it. To do that, you have to first change your idea of what you think change is. Accept that it’s inevitable and determine your own relationship with change. You’re either going to love it or hate it. 

Look for the silver lining in every situation. There's always something that you can see differently and see better for you to live better. Click To Tweet

A lot of this is just your consciousness alone. That’s the first step. Then, the more you know who you are, what you love, what you hate, what excites you, and what drives you, the closer you are to achieving what you want. For any of this to occur and for you to live your best life, you have to go with the flow. You have to be able to go with the punches. Be flexible. Things will turn out in ways that you hadn’t anticipated, but often they’re going to be better than you anticipated if you just are able to say, “Okay, it’s not what I had in mind, but maybe it’s going to be better than what I had.” 

Very often the process is the purpose. We’re so set on the purpose, like “This is my goal, this is what’s meant to be, that’s how it’s supposed to go.” That you miss all of that stuff in the middle of that process. That’s where real learning can occur. If you’re really paying attention and you’re really open in this way, then you might decide that the purpose is different than what you anticipated. Maybe you wanted to go to point A, but then, you ended up at point B and it was even better than you imagined. This is living a life of change. This is what it means to be really a change junkie. 

The truth is that a successful life is a life of comfortable discomfort. I’ll liken it to a work out because I exercise a lot. When you’re working out, at least when I do, I like the pain of it. I know that something’s changing and transforming through that pain, and I know what my goal is. I’m like, “Let’s push harder and push harder.” It’s the same thing with life. Growth isn’t easy, but choosing to change over discomfort takes courage, resilience, and self-love. For me, that’s really everything.

I love that. If somebody wants to be better at change, they do need to exercise because exercise gives you so much energy and your physical state totally affects your mental state. I think I’m very adaptable because of my upbringing, because of the fact that when I was 22, I almost had no money. I took a flight to Japan, wanting to stay there for three weeks and ended up staying there for 3½ years, and traveled the world. I’ve been around a lot of people and a lot of so many situations. Some quite scary, some quite uplifting, some quite luxurious. 

I’ve been through so much that I became a very adaptable person because I had to become adaptable. This is the most important thing because as we grow, as we become older, it’s harder to be more adaptable. We develop an identity. This is who I am, this is how I do things, this is my routine, and that’s my identity. We hold on to this identity, thinking that this is who we are. Our habits are not who we are because we created those habits. We created some situations in our lives and we can change it. Now is the time to develop an identity that is more flexible and more open. I am more than what I think I am, I am more capable than I thought I am, I am more adaptable. 

If somebody doesn’t believe it, even a simple affirmation every day in the mirror saying I am flexible, adaptable, and I can handle whatever is coming my way, even this type of affirmation can really help someone change it because that information can become a part of our new identity. All of us need to develop a new identity, whether it is in our business, change the way we do business, change the way we do our personal lives, change the way we do everything. This is a time to go into an identity shift.

I agree and like you said, when people resist change, that’s when they get stuck in their ways, and then they become really unhappy and miserable. I often look at the elderly people who have frown marks and a weathered face, and it looks like they had a really hard life. I often try to imagine what they look like as a baby. Of course, they didn’t look like any of that. What changed the way they looked? I think it has to do with how they perceive their life to be. If you’re so stuck in your ways and you refuse to change, you refuse to be flexible and you refuse to adapt to a different outlook, then it is a recipe for loneliness and for sadness. There’s no other choice, change is happening. 

In this moment, as you and I are speaking, our bodies are changing. Things are changing in every second. Understanding that, your only other option is to embrace change. For you, as you said, you ended up being in Japan for three years. You could have been like, “Oh, I don’t want that. I want stability now.” You could have decided to live a very different life. The fact that you’re doing this podcast alone shows that you are somebody who is interested in change and growth. Not everybody realizes it’s something they need, but I’m telling you, it absolutely is.

Thank you for that. Let’s talk about radical kindness and what we can do to help others at this time.

That’s another thing I love talking about because very often people wonder, “How can I get out of the rut that I’m in? What should I be doing at this time? What should I be thinking?” Really, the prescription is to do acts of kindness, to think of other people, to be sharing, because that creates happiness. That’s the thing about giving, it’s kind of irony. 

If you want to receive, you want to be happy, and you want to have all the good things in life, then you need to be a giver. That means to not just be charitable, but to give when you really don’t want to, to give to the people that you actually judge, to give when it’s really uncomfortable. That is what creates this transformation and that’s what radical kindness is. It’s to give not just with your hands, but with an open heart. That requires something completely different in your giving.

Can you give me some examples?

Yeah. For instance in Kabbalah, we also call it transformational sharing. For instance, if somebody who is a billionaire gives a million dollars to charity, it’s very charitable. Nobody would deny that, of course. It’s a very good deed, it’s very kind, it’s all of those things, but the radical kindness would be if that billionaire actually got down on his or her hands and knees, and was with the people cleaning the garbage, cleaning the toilet, or doing something that was really out of their comfort zone. 

Growth isn't easy, and choosing to change over discomfort takes courage, resilience, and self-love. Click To Tweet

In that kind of giving, it’s easy to judge people and say, “Oh, that person’s not really deserving.” It might be easier to write a check than to do the latter for somebody who has so much. It’s those kinds of things. That’s why I said to give to people we even judge. That’s where kindness comes in. It’s a completely different muscle and different animal than just being sharing or giving.

I saw a few examples of radical kindness from some posts I saw from Israel, where there was this kindergarten teacher who made 30 goodie bags to her students. She got special permission, and she went and visited every child from a distance. They had a very long distance between her and the child. She was dancing with them and she visited 30 kids just to say hi and make them feel good. 

Another example was this woman on this Facebook group who was just calling out to the community and saying, “Hey, I’m in the center of Israel. If you want me to bring anything to your elderly parents, then just buy it. I’m going to go in and deliver it for you.” There are groups of young people that are going and shopping for elderly people. This sense of community is really important because we need each other, and we need to help each other.

It’s really doing something that you don’t have to do and that you’re not getting something directly back from doing it. There’s no immediate gratification. It’s just doing it because we know that we’re all linked together, that your well-being is connected to my well-being, that there’s no separation between any of us.

My birthday is on the 31st, her birthday is on the 30th, and she sent me a video. There were maybe seven cars of friends that were honking and saying “Happy Birthday” to her from far away. It was so beautiful. It’s just nice to see the humanity in all this because people are good and kind. This is time to open your heart, reach out, and help someone. If you know that somebody is alone, call them, talk to them. Initiate that human connection and make someone’s day.


For our two final questions. One is where can people find you, connect to you, and get your incredible books? And then, what are your three top tips to living a stellar life?

Okay, for the first, you can follow me at rethinklife.today; that’s my blog. On Instagram, @monicaberg74. You can find my books, Fear Is Not An Option and Rethink Love, along with the workbook that it comes with on Amazon. What was the last question? My three best…

Tips to living a stellar life.

Be honest, be courageous, and be kind.

Very Virgo of you, very concise.

I am consistent.

Monica, thank you. This was so much fun and inspiring. I’m sure everybody that listened to this episode got very inspired and got a lot out of it. Thank you so much for being here. I appreciate you.

Thank you. I really enjoyed it, too.

Thank you, listeners. Remember to be honest, be courageous, be kind, and have a stellar life. This is Orion. Until next time.

Your Checklist of Actions to Take

{✓} Live continually seeking growth and transformation. Treat every opportunity as a learning experience. 
{✓} Be friends with people who are also seekers of growth and transformation. A support system of like-minded individuals is extremely helpful in self-development. 
{✓} Be proactive rather than reactive to things. A proactive approach focuses on eliminating problems before they appear, and a reactive approach is based on responding to events after they’ve happened.
{✓} Take more time for self-care during this time of quarantine. Be kind and patient with yourself. You don’t have to take up a new hobby.  If you feel like taking things easy you can just watch Netflix for a day. 
{✓} When the feeling of fear takes over, acknowledge it, identify it, and then release it. One way to instantly shift your mindset is by saying, “fear is not an option” out loud.
{✓} Refrain from feeling victimized during challenging situations. Focus on the solution rather than blaming others for being stuck.
{✓} Don’t be too hard on yourself. Take it one day at a time. Just enjoy the moment as much as you can. If you have kids, take this opportunity to spend quality time with them.
{✓} Understand it’s all about perspective. Find the silver lining in everything, and don’t forget to look at the bigger picture.
{✓} Be flexible with change. A quote by Charles Darwin: “it’s not the strongest of the species who survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.”
{✓} Check out Monica Berg’s website and grab a copy of her book, Fear is Not an Option and Rethink Life.

Links and Resources

About Monica Berg

Monica Berg is an international speaker, spiritual thought leader, author, and Chief Communications Officer of the Kabbalah Centre.



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