After the Show with Frank LaMere – Taking Our Power Back by Using it

Frank’s message about taking our power back was so simple, yet it was powerful. I felt empowered and enabled by his message.

Frank’s message was simply to act, to choose, to do, to take that step.

So, power is not something that we should talk about as if it is something that we can hold in our hands or take from someone or give to someone. Power is the ability to do, to act, or to produce. Power is doing, taking that step.

Last autumn, I was feeling helpless and overwhelmed by all the work to be done on part of the land that I own and therefore have to take responsibility for. Part of the 10 acres that I steward (aka own) is a pipeline easement. It runs up the far boundary of our property line for a good 600 feet and is about 60 feet wide or more.  It gets a lot of sun and provides habitat for sun-loving plant species and the animals that thrive from those species. Rabbits, grouse and field mice do very well there. In turn, those animals help the foxes and coyotes to do well, since they prey on the rabbits, mice and grouse. There are also wild turkeys living there. Also porcupines and raccoons.

For me, the pipeline provides a stunning view into the Sutton River valley and beyond to the westwood hills and Mount Pinnacle. It is the only year-round view on my heavily wooded property.

Last autumn, I contemplated having to clear or pay someone to clear the young birches and pines that were beginning to take over on the pipeline from the blackberry brambles and wild spirea. I did about five hours of work back there and it was rough work, but it left me feeling empowered. I could take care of the pipeline as an ‘open canopy’ (aka full sun) species habitat for the forseeable future. If I did a little bit at a time, if I dedicated about five or six hours every spring and every fall to doing the work, I could keep it under control.

What I didn’t want to do was to just leave it to grow and grow, turning a meadow into a young forest with trees becoming harder and harder to cut down. There is a lot of forest around here – tens of thousands of acres of forest. There are lawns and gardens and there are farmers’ fields. The habitat that is most rare in this area is wild meadowland offering plenty of sunshine to flowering grasses and small bushes, which is exactly what the pipeline offers to the species that thrive in that habitat.

So, just by doing it, just by taking that step and taking ownership and responsibility for it, I empowered myself and went from feeling helpless and overwhelmed, to feeling able, strong, capable and empowered.

And I think that is what Frank LaMere was reminding us of in his words in the Talking Circle on Saturday, April 20. Power is the ability to do, to act, to produce. When we do nothing to exercise that power, we forget that we have it and we then feel powerless. All we have to do to reclaim our power is to start using it again.

For a link to the show with Frank Lamere, click here.  


Talking Stick Radio 4/13/13 with guest Lisa Singh

We’re very pleased to begin our series on “taking your power back” by having Lisa Singh join us again on April 13, 2013!

Lisa Singh

“I work with the Dayton Mediation Center because I believe in the power of others to solve their own problems. I also believe that being a mediator present in the moment of conflict provides a unique opportunity for people to see a different perspective that opens the door towards a decision — a decision that can transform everything!”

Lisa SinghLisa began as a Volunteer Mediator with the Center 15 years ago and currently is a Mediation Specialist Contractor for the Center. Lisa serves in a number of program areas including: the Elder Care Mediation Program, the Montgomery County (Ohio) Juvenile Court Visitation/Custody Program, the Community Impact Panel Program, and the Adult Victim-Offender Mediation program, along with providing facilitation services.

Lisa is a Dayton Mediation Center “Master Mediator”©, which exemplifies her more than 600 hours of theoretical and practice-based experience as a mediator Lisa has also been instrumental in developing programs and writing successful grants for the Center totaling more than $750,000 in grant awards to the Center.

She served as Program Director in 1998 for the Dayton Municipal Courts adult Victim-Offender Mediation Pilot Program which continues to be an active Center program. She also worked as a Contractor and Case Manager for the Montgomery County (Ohio) Juvenile Court Visitation/Custody program. Lisa has been trained by the National Institute of Corrections and the Balanced and Restorative Justice Program as a Trainer of Restorative Justice. During her time at the Center she has also been instrumental in developing continuing education training programs to enhance the skills of Center volunteer mediators.

Lisa worked with Tom Wahlrab and the Ohio Commission for Dispute Resolution and Conflict Management to start the Ohio Community Mediation Association. Lisa also provided support and assistance to the Center and Commission to introduce the Uniform Mediation Act to mediators across the State of Ohio. Lisa studied for her Bachelor’s in Psychology at University of Illinois and took continuing education through Antioch University McGregor’s Intercultural Communication program.

Lisa has a number of advanced training certifications through the Ohio Supreme Court, the Nebraska Community Mediation Association, and the Association for Conflict Resolution. Lisa worked as the Regional Director of the Center for Conflict Resolution in Nebraska. Lisa works independently as a professional trainer and consultant specializing in Intercultural Communication, facilitation, and conflict resolution. Lisa is also a professional facilitator leading teams in creative problem solving in a facilitated environment.

She works with Idea Connection to help provide creative, innovative solutions to clients, including Fortune 500 companies.   Recently, Lisa is working with a women’s circle that welcomes women coming out of prison to a community of support.

To contact Lisa for more information, please email her at lisa.j.singh@gmail.comlisa singh

Join us with return guest Frank LaMere

We’re very excited to announce that Frank LaMere will be joining us again on Saturday, April 20 at 10 Central, 11 Eastern, as we continue our series on “taking your power back.”  You’re welcome to join in by calling (424) 220-1870 or listen live or in the archivesFrank LaMere by clicking here.

Frank LaMere, a member of the Winnebago Tribe, is a noted social and political activist from South Sioux City, Nebraska. He has held numerous Nebraska Democratic Party offices and served on the Democratic National Committee from 1996 until 2009.  Mr. LaMere has attended the last seven Democratic National Conventions including the most recent one in Charlotte, North Carolina, and chaired the Native American Caucus meetings of the conventions in 2004 and 2008.  He had the distinction of casting his vote as a super delegate for Barack Obama in 2008 and credits The Reverend Jesse Jackson for inspiring his political efforts that he began in 1987.

Frank is generally regarded as the architect of the movement to stop the illegal flow of alcohol from Whiteclay, Nebraska onto the dry Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, work which has led to his arrest on two occasions and which is chronicled in the award-winning documentary The Battle For Whiteclay. He has served on numerous boards and commissions and has been honored for his efforts on many fronts.  He was the recipient of the 2001 Peacemaker of the Year award given by the Nebraskans For Peace, the 2011 War Eagle Human Rights Award from the City of Sioux City and was recognized through legislative Resolution 440 from the Nebraska Unicameral for his work with Native people.

Frank is the father of four and the grandfather of nine and is married to Cynthia, a member of the Yankton Sioux Tribe.

After the Show – first in a series on Taking Our Power Back – with guest Lisa Singh

Lisa Singh is a ‘Master Mediator’ and works in the fields of conflict resolution, intercultural communication and facilitation for creative problem solving. Lisa has also worked in the field of restorative justice. She has written of herself:

“I work with the Dayton Mediation Center because I believe in the power of others to solve their own problems. I also believe that being a mediator present in the moment of conflict provides a unique opportunity for people to see a different perspective that opens the door towards a decision – a decision that can transform everything!”

This allows me, Lu, to move easily into an exploration of those moments when we take our power back, making a decision, or a choice, that can transform our lives.

So, Lisa shared with us that taking our power back is not easy. We might wish that it was, or think that it should be, but it is not. It involves a lot of thought and a lot of time.

It is in recognizing our own power, our strengths and our abilities that we begin. But it is also in recognizing our weaknesses and forgiving ourselves for what we’ve been, and for what we’ve done, that we would like to have been different than it was. These are not permanent. We can change them. They are not failures. They are experiences that we can then make new choices from.

Taking our power back is a process. We recognize where we feel disempowered, recognize, or begin to recognize, how that feels for us, and then we realize that we gave our power away in that situation or in that relationship and therefore, we can take it back.

Addiction of any kind is an obvious example of this. But it can also be a work situation or a habit… Lisa mentioned procrastination as a sign for her of an area of her life where she feels unable or disempowered. Sometimes, we find ourselves avoiding a person because we don’t want to be that way, in other words, we don’t want to be the way that person defines us. I think of my older sister in this regard; she still sees me as needing her guidance and her advice and I don’t see myself that way and don’t choose to.

Stopping to look at and identify our thoughts and feelings helps us to be more authentic. Knowing of ourselves who we are and what we are willing to do and what we are unwilling to do, helps us to bring our authentic selves to situations and relationships. Part of taking our power back is being completely honest with ourselves about ourselves.

So how do we tune in with ourselves to become more aware?

I begin sentences with the words “I feel… “ And Susan mentioned that using the phrase “I experience the feeling of… reminds us that we can change that experience.

Lisa gave us the insight of asking why. So, I feel uncomfortable… or I feel anxious… Why do I feel that way? And the answer to the question can often take us into some of our core beliefs or responses that have been learned from our families when we were very young. In my family, yelling was completely unacceptable. In my husband’s family yelling and even getting physical with siblings and so on, was acceptable. One day, my husband and I went to visit his mother. He and his mother began to yell and swear at each other and I was so uncomfortable and actually appalled by their behavior and then they both just burst out laughing and smiled broadly at each other and I realized that they were completely okay with the yelling and swearing. It was easy and fun for them to communicate with each other in that way.

We can also ask ourselves the question, “Where and when do I feel safe?”

Peggy shared with us her wisdom. She said, “The more we sit and give ourselves the time to identify our feelings, the more aware we can become.” She also encouraged us to allow ourselves to be vulnerable and to allow ourselves to be imperfect, to not even aspire to be perfect, rather to aspire to embrace ourselves exactly the way we are – feeling in the core of ourselves that we are okay, even perfectly okay, deep within, in the heart of us. Peggy encouraged us to embrace our wholeness, the sum total of what we are.

Brenda also shared with us that it is empowering to observe objectively, both ourselves and other people. She encouraged us to be observant and to be aware.

This talking circle included Susan, Lisa, Peggy, Brenda and myself. I thoroughly enjoyed hearing so many voices.

It seems that taking our power back means becoming more aware of our own feelings and being and acting from that awareness.



We welcome Sherri Rosen to our Talking Circle on 4/6/13!

Talking Stick Radio is excited to announce that this week is the first week of our “taking my power back” series.  We’re inviting guests to share stories of becoming empowered, of taking their power back after discovering they’d given their power away.
We’re very excited to invite Sherri Rosen to be our guest on Saturday, April 6 at 11 AM Eastern, 10 Central.  Sherri has a great story to share about how she took her power back.  Her life now is a life of amazing flow and effortless synchronicity.
Sherri Rosen has her own publicity firm for 13 years dedicated to Inspirational Publicity.

She works with people all over the world who are making this world a better place.  She writes her own weekly blog Redhead’s Rap and she also writes for Elephant Journal and The Good Men Project.  Her new Inspirational ebook Give Me Your Truth has just won 2 book awards.

Join us live or in the archivesSherri Rosen, and feel free to call in during the show at 424-220-1870.  We’d love to hand the talking stick to you!