50% OFF DYNAMIC DUMBBELLS

Days
Hours
Minutes
Seconds

FREE MASTERCLASS - DEC 7

Listen to Your Body Podcast 345 - How to Give Yourself Radical Permission w/ Hayden Dawes

How to Give Yourself Radical Permission w/ Hayden Dawes

Do you struggle with the concept of giving yourself permission to do or not do the things you really want? Like taking a rest day, sleeping in, eating enough to nourish your body, or setting boundaries and saying no? You are not alone in this struggle.

However, when you can give yourself the radical permission you deserve, you can take care of yourself and those you love in a transformative new way.

Listen to Your Body Podcast 345 - How to Give Yourself Radical Permission w/ Hayden Dawes

Click play to listen right on this page, no app needed:

Or, listen on your favorite app: iTunes (Apple Podcasts) | Spotify | Stitcher

Key Takeaways

If You Want To Allow Yourself Radical Permission, You Should:

  1. Stop the search for external validation and start listening to your own inner expert
  2. Never abandon yourself by consciously choosing to live more expansively
  3. Create compassion and self-compassion so that you can connect to the rest of humanity
  4. Give yourself permission to set boundaries and say no to others, society, and yourself

Compassion Warrior Hayden Dawes

Hayden Dawes is a social worker, therapist, researcher, speaker, and self-proclaimed ‘Compassion Warrior’ passionate about helping people give themselves permission, do what they want to do, and reclaim their power. Hayden has harnessed his past to examine our social systems and find a way to help people connect to the larger community of humanity.

Writing Your Own Permission Slip

Many of us are used to seeking permission from an external source, such as a teacher, coach, parent, partner, or boss. Have you ever considered that you have the power to write your own permission slip? A permission slip is an opportunity to come back to yourself and ensure that you are not abandoning yourself whatever you decide to do or not do. 

By raising your permission consciousness over time, you can lean into self-compassion and choose to live more expansive and open lives.

Creating Self-Compassion Through Radical Permission

Being compassionate and giving yourself permission can feel scary and vulnerable. While being your authentic self can feel like a risk, it is the only way that you will become connected to the larger community of humanity. 

Some people believe that giving themselves compassion will end their accountability or dedication. This is not the case! Hayden wants you to know that there is space for both, and by practicing coming back to the expert within yourself, you can sustain yourself through self-compassion and radical permission.

Are you ready to start listening to your body and giving yourself the permission you have been longing for? Share what you loved most about Hayden’s vision with me in the comments below.

In This Episode

  • Learn about ‘Petty Tuesday’ and how it relates to work being done in the world (6:30)
  • Why people who have marginalized identities have a hard time giving themselves permission (15:27)
  • Ways that you can begin the process of giving yourself more radical permission (23:30)
  • How to give yourself compassion without giving up on your discipline (28:30)
  • Discover how self-compassion and radical permission are woven together as a practice (33:35)
  • Tips for allowing yourself permission to set boundaries and say no sometimes (38:41)

Quotes

“I really use it as an invitation for everyone to air our their grievance in a way that can be really healthy. Because in a lot of ways, if we don’t, it will work its way out in other ways that really aren’t as healthy.” (8:08)

“I try to use my work first and foremost to help myself so that I can help others help themselves. It’s a reciprocal, bidirectional relationship.” (14:12)

“A permission slip is an opportunity to come back to yourself and not abandon yourself. Because whether that coach, that teacher, that doctor, your partner is for you on the other side of the thing you decided to do or not do, I would hope that you haven’t abandoned yourself.” (20:23)

“There is enough space for accountability and self-compassion.” (29:20)

“When your parents gave you a permission slip to go on a field trip, most people wanted to go, but I’m sure if you didn’t go, it probably wouldn’t be the worst thing ever. So let’s just take the pressure off of everything.”  (37:47)

Featured on the Show

Hayden Dawes Website

Follow Hayden on Instagram | Twitter | LinkedIn

Johari Window

Follow Steph on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube | Pinterest

I’d really love it if you would take 1 min and leave us a rating and review on Apple Podcasts!

Related Episodes

Ep 305: Using Body Language To Understand Yourself and Others Better with Tiff Lee

Ep 298: How to Show Up More Authentically with Grace Edison

Ep 290: Start Living Your Life By Design with Rai Henry

How to Give Yourself Radical Permission w/ Hayden Dawes FULL TRANSCRIPT

Steph Gaudreau
Do you struggle with the concept of giving yourself permission to do or not do the things that you really want? Whether it’s the permission to take a rest day or to sleep in, or the permission to eat enough food to fuel your lifting workouts, the permission to say no, it goes on and on. And this is something that so many of my listeners struggle with. Even I have struggled with this, and there are areas of my life where I continue to notice my resistance to give myself permission. On today’s podcast, I’m welcoming a special guest who is an expert in radical permission, self-compassion, and collective liberation. I cannot wait for you to walk away from this show with your own permission slip.

Steph Gaudreau
The Listen To Your Body podcast is all about helping women who lift weights, get stronger, fuel themselves without counting every bite of food, perform better in and out of the gym and take up space. I’m a strength coach, nutritional therapy practitioner, and certified intuitive eating counselor Steph Gaudreau. This weekly show brings you discussion about building strength, without obsessing about food and exercise, lifting weights, food, psychology, and more. You’ll learn how to eat, train, recover, listen to your body, and step into your strength. Hit subscribe on your favorite podcast app. And let’s dive in.

Steph Gaudreau
Hello, my lovely. Welcome to the podcast this week. Thank you so much for hanging out with me and my very special guest who I will tell you about in just a moment. They so much for being here. As always remember that this podcast is possible because of you because you continue to listen and tune in Week after week, year after year. I really do appreciate it. Okay, on today’s show, I’m welcoming my very special guest Hayden Dawes. Hayden is a social worker/therapist, researcher, speaker, and self-proclaimed compassion warrior who has founded the hashtag radical permission, Hayden is all about exploring the edges of where you are perhaps resistant to give yourself permission to do what you really want to do. And through that, to reclaim your power.

Steph Gaudreau
In today’s episode, we’re going to be talking about everything from what it was like for Hayden to have a viral post recently, what compassion and radical permission really mean? How to write yourself, your first permission slip. And of course, we keep it light with a talk about petty Tuesday, I really wanted to bring Hayden on the show because his work intersects so amazingly, with the things we talked about on this show. How to give yourself permission to rest or how to give yourself permission to eat more, or how to give yourself permission to say no to things that you really don’t want to do. But you feel you’re obligated to. This is such a universal topic that I know is going to resonate very strongly. Before we jump into the show, just want to remind you that soon I’m going to be running a brand new group coaching program for strength nutrition if you’re somebody who has been lifting weights, but you want to know how to fuel yourself properly so that you get stronger build muscle, have enough energy and perform better in and out of the gym, that I want you to go ahead and jump on the waitlist. I implemented a new link for this because recently I was giving another link that was a little bit hard to handle. So if you want to go ahead and join the waitlist for more information as it becomes available, I want you to go to StephGaudreau.com/link, right, a lot easier than the link that we were using before that will then redirect to the waitlist page so you can put your name and email there and I will send you more details as they become available. Alright, without further ado, let’s go ahead and jump into this podcast on radical permission with my very special guest Hayden Dawes.

Steph Gaudreau
Hello Hayden, welcome to the show. I’m so excited to be here. I’ve enjoyed following your work and connecting with you. So I’m looking forward to digging in and having a wonderful conversation. I am looking forward to this. I’m trying to remember back to sort of when we initially connected one-to-one kind of person to person, and that was on Facebook, on our Facebook post. And I can’t even remember necessarily remember the content of it. But you sort of invited me to come to check out some of the stuff that you were doing. And I was like, Okay, this is important stuff. And since then I look forward to your posts every day or as often as you post them. But I’m scrolling on my Instagram feed, whenever I see one of your posts come up, I just think I needed this today. And I didn’t even know it.

Steph Gaudreau
So, yeah, so I’m really happy to finally be just talking to you, one on one here, and really bringing your brilliance to the community here and sharing that with them. Because I really feel like what you do is such an integral part of a lot of the work that we do on this podcast, a lot of the things that we explore, and is kind of at that deeper, almost like root level of it. So I’m just really chuffed that you’re here. Yeah, let’s have a great time together. Let’s do it. Okay, gosh, I have so many, so many questions. So many things I want to ask you. But we’ll start off with a fun thing, which is, I think it’s all fun, but a light-hearted thing maybe, if you will. And that is you’re pretty well known on Instagram for something called Petty Tuesday. And I would love to get your thoughts about why Petty Tuesday is something that you do? And what you know, like, what significance does it have in terms of crossover to what you do? And your like your, your work like what you’re doing in the world?

Hayden Dawes
Yeah. So I will be completely honest, it was not an intentional thing that I had thought out. Like, as much as I want to be brain and pinky in the brain, I am not that well, masterful plant. And so I was really kind of going off about some celebrity last summer because they did something in their kind of the workplace environment that was just not the best. And I was like, you know, not to be petty, but you know, Petty Tuesday, and I was going off on my stories. And one of my friends who has been following me said, Hey, mess, really funny, Petty Tuesday. And so now, every Tuesday, I kind of give myself permission to be really kind of petty to stop taking myself. So seriously, I occupy a lot of spaces in the world, where I feel like I have to be the knower, I have to have everything sort of button-up and zipped up. And I thought, you know, let me lean into this kind of sassier bigger part of myself, that sometimes this really over it kind of childish sticks up my nose. And it’s like, I’m going to be petty about this.

Hayden Dawes
So I really do use it as like an invitation for everyone to sort of air out their grievance in a way that can be really kind of healthy. Because a lot of the ways if we don’t, it will work its way out and other ways that really aren’t as healthy, either sort of putting damage to ourselves, or damage to someone else or something else. So I really love Petty Tuesday. Again, I’m thankful that I have people that kind of bring an usher and want more of that out of me.

Steph Gaudreau
Hmm, well, I think there’s this element of Instagram, we were talking about, before we started recording, right, they sort of the woes and the great things about it as well. But I think there’s this element on Instagram, it’s almost like it’s almost a contradiction in some ways where people want to know that you’re professional, that you can provide them, you know, value and you’re making good content, and you’re being helpful in the world. And you’re, you know, representing your, your education and what you do. And then also, there’s this, this desire that people want people to be really real. And sometimes it feels like those things are so at odds and there’s such tension there.

Steph Gaudreau
That’s like, don’t want to say the wrong thing. You know, offend people see, you know, and so I love that you do that, because every time I see yours, I’m like, Okay.oh, maybe like dip my toe in a little bit. What’s, what’s todays about?

Hayden Dawes
I kind of remember what I went off about, but sometimes I’ll ask my followers to send me what’s making them petty. And one of my followers was going off about their neighbor. Apparently, their neighbor ended up cutting their internet line, so they’re having to use the internet from someone else. And this person said that this is the same neighbor that two years ago cut down the honeysuckle tree, and it’s this honeysuckle tree that really helped me breathe outside so I don’t have to smell their dogshit outside.

Hayden Dawes
So I said, Okay, so you mean to tell me, you have to use someone’s internet and smell their dogshit outside because of this same neighbor. And I just, I just laugh about how humorous it is that you can live in the same sort of space as someone, they don’t really live in your home, you don’t have that kind of relationship with them. And yet they really can get underneath your skin in such a real way.

Steph Gaudreau
Yes, yes, I can relate. It’s so true. Well, I appreciate the way that you’re, you know, giving people permission to, to show those parts of themselves or, you know, for example, I’m a really, I grew up on the East Coast, the Northeast, sarcasm is like a dark art that we learn when we’re children. And I’ve had to really rein that in, when I started teaching on the West Coast here in Southern California, I don’t think sarcasm is always appropriate, it can definitely become a crutch in terms of duration. It’s not always kind, but I had to really just completely rein it all in. And now I’m, I’m sort of like thinking about just ways that I can show up a little bit more like myself, maybe it’s something super sarcastic, but allow myself to be more human too. And I think that’s what you’re doing.

Hayden Dawes
Well, yeah. And I think it’s so important that we recommend, we want authenticity from people and yet, authenticity is a risk. And when my pettiness comes out, I am taking a risk, the people that I can be the pettiest with are the ones that I like, I know have my back. And sometimes it takes time to kind of get there. And you speak about the contradiction on Instagram. And I think sort of our larger, bigger culture shows us. You know, no one wants to make a misstep. And yet, our humaneness is being contained on one side of the tension. We’re on the other side, we need to open up our humaneness. So we have more space to actually connect with one another.

Steph Gaudreau
Hmm, absolutely. I love that. Thanks for indulging me and, and a fun question to get started with. But at the sort of the heart of what you do is a few things self-compassion, radical permission, collective liberation. How does? How does one end up? We’ll start maybe here, how does one end up doing this kind of work? Because you’re a therapist, you speak you’re a researcher in sort of academic realm as well. So how did you end up here, saying, This is what I’m doing for my life’s work at this moment?

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, I mean, you definitely want to follow me for a more in-depth story about this, because I could talk about myself forever. Yeah, I did not have this planned. I mean, I could always Well, let me kind of go back even further my bachelor’s degrees in vocal performance. And I so I will learn a lot of classical music and in French, and German and Italian and in classical music was a vehicle really to get in touch with the text and the character and then sort of deliver it in front of an audience, really, to use the music and my voice as a vehicle for that moment in time for us to create an experience together. And so I worked in sales after I knew the music career wasn’t really going to be the thing for me. And then I found myself in a social work program. And I was really turned on, I felt like it was an opportunity to best understand myself and the world that I’ve lived in, and what it means to be a gay black man and the society and what it means to be hated in our society.

Hayden Dawes
So that sort of started the journey into a sort of going deeper into human issues, looking at the different social systems that I mentioned, and also finding a way to help people. I mean, I try to use my work first and foremost, to help myself so that I can help others help themselves. And it’s a reciprocal bi-directional relationship. And so now I’ve kind of use this mantle kind of using from like the Buddhist tradition of being a compassion warrior. So I really want to use my work to help alleviate all the suffering that’s happening in the world, including the suffering that I hold, because I believe we are so much stronger when we’re together. And I also know that I have my own work. I have my own shadow sides, my own pains, my own suffering, that I can use as an ingredient, to help other people because the same way that my teachers and folks such as yourself that I look up to that helped me with my own suffering, it’s just as it keeps going around and around and around for me.

Steph Gaudreau
I love that. I think that’s a great way to kind of frame the, the discussion. And one of the things that you do quite frequently on your Instagram is you post permission slips. And I would love to know, maybe to kind of dive more into this topic. Why do people, particularly certain kinds of people, perhaps who have marginalized identities or are not part of the dominant culture? Why do some people have such a hard time giving themselves permission to do even really, and I’m using air quotes here, small things, because obviously, for those people, it’s not a small thing? But why does that happen?

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, I think sort of thinking in terms of being a researcher, and, you know, practicing therapist is that it’s happening on multiple levels. So for some of us, we live in a world that says, who we love and how we love them. It’s not appropriate, it’s not okay. You know, in terms of us understanding our own bodies, and the way that we make space in the world, we should shrink ourselves. That’s not okay.

Hayden Dawes
And so there’s a society level, there’s also sort of what happens in our workplaces, what happens at school? What happens to the very many different communities that we traverse? And then there’s also what happens in our families and what happened in our family of origin? No, you shouldn’t do that. No, you’re doing that the wrong way. Or I want you to do it this way. All those very many messages that we’ve received, we end up internalizing them. And, you know, I definitely want to be clear that I talk to a lot of stray white dudes, and they are just as bound as the rest of us and get it looks very different.

Hayden Dawes
They kind of show up in the world, the presentation looks different. And I’m so thankful for my own journey to kind of slow down and recognized and like, see past maybe the toxic masculinity, or the bravado to really see where there’s this tender spots where they too, don’t give themselves permission, maybe don’t give themselves permission to cry, to be weak, to express sorrow, to be frustrated in a way that they do not sort of punching the ball. You know, we’re all bound in these, these cycles.

Steph Gaudreau
Yeah, I appreciate how you kind of frame this because I think you hit on one of the points that I hear so much from my community and just the people that I serve, and in sort of my role in the world, right is understanding how we can come back to eating in ways that are supportive to our bodies, and we can engage with movement, but have it be in a way that’s perhaps different than what we’ve learned, or how we’ve previously interacted with it, and sort of our relationship with those things. And one of the things that I hear so often is that, well, I should rest, but I have a hard time giving myself that permission. Or, you know, if I really kind of get a sense of what would feel supportive and nourishing for me to eat today. It’s like, I still can’t give that permission to myself.

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, because so many of us are used to externalize externalizing, the permission giver, maybe it was a parent in the home, maybe it was a coach, maybe it was someone you know, that you work with, to, to say, you know, that’s okay. And sometimes we don’t have the opportunity to check everything that we might want to need for ourselves with someone else, I think the permission slips really are a way of getting in contact with that inner guide.

Hayden Dawes
One of the things that I love about sort of my career and being a therapist is 80% of the time people come in knowing specifically what they might need for themselves. And really my job is to support them in for them to hear what that need is and to follow through with it like whether it happens or not, whether it works out for you or not, because I got your back I’m right here in your corner.

Steph Gaudreau
Yeah, I can see that where it’s sort of maybe a lack of feeling like their support or there’s somebody there who can you know, hold that space for you recognize what you’re struggling with, here’s like is really listening to what this sort of tension is with the new like, I know these are the thing I know my body is saying, today might not be the day for an intense workout, for example. But I sense that in me but like, what if it doesn’t work, and am I going to be alone in this sort of aftermath of that?

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, I think a permission slip is an opportunity to come back to yourself and to not abandon yourself. Because whether that coach, that teacher, that doctor, your partner, is for you on the other side of the thing that you decided to do or not do, I would hope that you haven’t abandoned yourself.

Steph Gaudreau
Hmm. That’s such a powerful, I feel like a powerful theme of this podcast and a powerful theme of the work that you do is, you know, I’m looking at your Instagram right now you’re talking about, you know, giving yourself permission to go after what I need, you know, taking deep breaths, like, that’s what I needed. And it’s like, these, these things can that can feel so big, and also so simple and essential, like, you know, breathing or taking the time to rest or, and like normalizing that in our society when we’re so used to being split off from ourselves, as I guess, you know, to use a term that we use a lot on this podcast, like the expert of you, we’re not even allowed to have that permission to say like, oh, okay, well, I know how I know more about my body than probably anybody else. Right. And so, yeah, I can see where that would be that kind of coming home to self.

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, we can come home to ourselves, you know, and I definitely believe in the power of relationships, because other people helped me to better know myself. And I don’t know how familiar you are with the jewelry window. Not very familiar at all. And so the tahari window, I think some social psychologists back in like the 50s, I think they did this four-quadrant, grid, and you know, find a leak, and we can put it in the show notes. And there’s this idea that there’s a part of you that only, you know, for yourself, there’s a part of you that the world sees, and you also see, and there’s a part of you that the world sees that you don’t see. And there’s a part of you that’s really unknown. Neither you nor the world really knows that it’s there. And so a lot of my work, and I think a lot of great mental health therapists and coaches, is to make the window, specifically the one that you know, and the world knows a little bit larger. So that way, there can be more fluidity and a word that I love integration, so that you’re not a complete stranger to both yourself, and you’re not a complete stranger to others when they see you, especially the people that you spend a lot of the time with. Now, I am not advocating for self-disclosure, you Aaron out all of your stuff. Like that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking more about this with that deep intimacy and connection. That’s not predicated on, you know, everything that you disclose about yourself.

Steph Gaudreau
That’s so important. We know when you’re talking with people, or you’re maybe I don’t know what term you would use, nudging them or saying like, this is how you might do this, like, this is how it could look. What are some of the ways that you have found are helpful for people to begin the process of giving more permission or exploring radical permission? Like how does this actually happen? Because I’m assuming some people are thinking like, they just have to jump or do the big thing or whatever it is and I think…

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, yeah. I think so. I think there’s multiple levels to this your consciousness-raising for yourself. I’ve heard some people say to me, Oh, my gosh, Hayden, what’s so powerful to me about radical permission and these permission slips, is I had no awareness as to how much I wasn’t giving myself permission. And I’m like, wow, I mean, that’s, that’s pretty big. You know, maybe we just kind of sit and just land with that. What is it like knowing for you that you’re just now thinking that anytime you want to buy something from your own money, you’re asking your mom, you’re asking your partner, you’re asking your dad, you’re asking other people in your circle as to whether it’s okay? Like, we don’t have to do anything about that right. Now. Let’s just really slow down and just notice what’s happening. What do you notice when you see that what’s the bring it up for you? And the other thing I mean, it really can just be an opportunity for you to figure out all the little kind of sneaky ways that we might get in the way of something that might be nourishing for us.

Hayden Dawes
So I told Steph that, like I really needed to rest today. And you know, I kind of had the intention to rest. But I did the laundry, I went on a walk, I went to the store because I just had to do all these things. And I’m like, boo, you can lie to yourself, but just showing a lie to me. Like, let’s talk about this, like, you’ve kind of sent this as what you want it like, let’s just explore it nonjudgmentally. And I’m gonna level with you, Hayden does some sneaky things with himself to get in the way of what most might be needed. Hmm.

Steph Gaudreau
I can relate to that as well. Not realizing that, you know, I’m thinking of a client with who I’ve had the great fortune to work with. She’s amazing. And one of the things that through our work together that sort of came out, it wasn’t even necessary, okay, I want you to go and think about like all the foods, you don’t give yourself permission to eat.

Steph Gaudreau
It was sort of a realizing like you said that reason that consciousness overtime where she, she really was exploring some of these things on her own and thinking about her own life and was like, you know, what, I have these foods that I actually really enjoy. And I haven’t allowed myself to eat them for so long. And I didn’t even realize because it just kind of went out of my, my awareness, it was sort of this is just what I do and don’t do now. And that was such a key moment for her in and kind of expanding what there was to see. And it wasn’t something where it was like, Okay, well, now you need to go and like, try this thing and try that thing and try it the other day. It was a noticing. And that was really powerful for her.

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, for those who can sort of see us, like, Steph opened up her arms like I felt more open with you describing that, because I think for many of us, we really want our life to feel much more expansive and open. And what is it like to know that you can make the choice? I mean, sometimes you’re not going to feel like resting, and like, you know, I really know, I need to quote-unquote, rest. But I’m making the informed choice that like I don’t want I’m not going to right now, rather than feeling as if these things are just happening to us.

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, you may decide, you know, I don’t really I can engage in these foods. But like, that’s not where I’m at right now. And how can I offer myself more space and compassion, just to be with all of what’s happening? In your experience?

Steph Gaudreau
Absolutely. You just said the word that I would love to ask you about. And that’s kind of where I was going with things, which is compassion. I feel like when I first learned about self-compassion, it was kind of a, it was a moment, it was like, Okay, well, I didn’t even know this was the thing, talking about consciousness-raising, at the same time, self-compassion is one of the things that this community, in general, specifically around things like food and exercise, is exploring a lot because it’s kind of a foreign concept. And one of the biggest fears that I hear from people is, and I’d love to get your take on this. If I give myself compassion, for what this thing is that I’m going through with the food movement, whatever it is, I’ll stop caring. And then I’ll give up, how do you adjust? How do you address that? Or what do you think about that?

Hayden Dawes
As soon as you ask that question, I can feel my heart rate kind of go up, something feels so risky about this, and it’s making me think about my own personal story with food and my body and movement.

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, I think this is a cultural thing, we are so used to thinking in order to, quote get results to get outcomes that are preferred, that we have to be shaming and blaming in order for it to happen. And there is enough space for both accountability and self-compassion to exist. I’m going to repeat that there is enough space for accountability and self-compassion. And in fact, I don’t even know if I like the term accountability, I might take that away, that might be a little loaded for some folks. So I want to say discipline because you know, I often think, I do think there is something very spiritual about having to do certain tasks. Like sometimes you have to take out the trash. You may not like taking out the trash, but you know, like, you have to take out the trash. I mean, I can be disciplined about that.

Hayden Dawes
And I can either take out the trash in a way that is begrudging about it and disdainful about it, where I can say, you know what, I’m doing this because I need to and it’s okay. And this is a practice of mine. And I’m just gonna maintain the course with it. And so that’s very different than I’m such a blank because I didn’t take out the trash. And so again, thinking in terms of expanding our idea of discipline, accountability, and self-compassion, being self-compassionate is, in my mind, it actually sustains you. I mean stuff, we can talk about how Hayden has yoyoed his diet over the years, doing some things that really weren’t caring for my body, I’m still in sort of my progress of that. But I feel like I’m enjoying the ride so much more because I can be compassionate and I can soothe those parts of myself that are so tender when it comes to food in my body.

Steph Gaudreau
I think you just gave us a huge Mic drop moment with that concept of the coexistence right of that idea of discipline and self-compassion. Because I think our world, right, and what a lot of people experience with food and movement is so binary, you’re either on the wagon or off the wagon, you’re on track, you’re off track, you’re doing it or you’re failing at it. And it seems like that, right, that seeps into that. How we frame even self-compassion, which is, I’m either doing it and kind of giving up on myself, or I’m being so hard on myself and kind of using that like idea of shame as a motivator, which doesn’t work. It’s like kind of seeing like, Where is there room for, for the kinder gentler way and for meeting yourself with that, that that self-compassion that takes me forward.

Hayden Dawes
Absolutely. And there’s this idea that compassion really connects you to the rest of humanity that also to has the struggling struggles. One of the reasons why many people are going to be listening to us is because they’re relating to stories. And so what is it like for those who are listening, that it’s not just you that are having these issues? That is Stephen Hagen to that we’re all collectively trying to look at this stuff differently and find new ways in which we don’t have to denigrate ourselves in order to go towards the outcomes that we might want.

Steph Gaudreau
Absolutely, yeah.

Hayden Dawes
And there’s just one more piece I want to add to that is, you know, there’s a Buddhist teacher called Pema Chodron that I really love Pema’s work and limit the teachings that she says she says, she says that her teacher told her, you know if you didn’t get this self-compassion thing, right at this moment, guess what, you have the rest of your life to work on it. Whether that’s the next minute, the next month, the next year, the next decade? like, wow, what an opportunity that I’m going to fuck up. I’m gonna get it wrong. I’m gonna treat myself like shit sometimes. And, oh, I’m just so thankful for the next breath. So I can practice again. That’s all. No big deal.

Steph Gaudreau
Yeah, I love that. And I love her work as well. When you sort of what I get such a sense from your work that so many of you are a master at seeing how things are connected. And how this is all woven together. And so one of the questions I was wondering is, how our self-compassion and radical permission is woven together for you in your, in your eyes, like as a practice, how do these two things kind of ebb and flow?

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, I don’t think I’ve thought too much about it. But I definitely see the connection. But I don’t know if my ability to articulate it’s going to be all the way there. But I’m going to try to because again, we don’t have to be performative here by almost think that permission slip radical permission is a tool to create compassion and self-compassion. One of the things that I think about with radical permission is it’s nested in a community. So it’s connected to a larger sense of humanity. And there’s also that self-practice of me listening to what I might need, it’s compassionate, to be with yourself and to center yourself and say if I think about the rest of my day, where the rest of my week or what may have transpired before prior, what might I need to offer myself what might I need to allow to have happened for me, today, give myself permission to receive or today I give myself permission to really experience joy, and to lean into it and to not push it away. And so I think it’s a bigger, larger practice of compassionate self. It’s just a tool. It’s a gateway. It can feel like a smaller lift. One of my collaborators, she just postpartum pregnancy groups. And she says for you know, self-care can feel like such a heavy word like y’all I am so over the term self-care, you want to talk about something that can fill a Petty Tuesday about.

Hayden Dawes
Oh my gosh, you know, I shout out to all my people that use self-care in their work. Like I love self-care as a concept, but it’s become so commercialized. But that’s me on my soapbox. But she says, Hey, in the groups, one of the things about permission slips is it’s an easy gateway, just to kind of give it a tiny bit of a nudge, it doesn’t feel as quite as heavy a lift, as these are the self-care task lists get up this diary and what are all the days that you’re going to do X, Y, and Z. And it’s like, I mean, that’s too much. I feel overwhelmed. I don’t come to therapy and support groups to feel like it is fifth grade again, and I got homework to do not about it.

Steph Gaudreau
I love that and definitely, I can relate. And it seems like kind of what you’re saying is like that permission slip allows you to be a little bit more at the moment, shrink it down a little bit. It doesn’t feel like yes, I mean, I think there’s probably a lot of people nodding their heads right now that health, wellness, I mean, even when it’s not the kind of toxic positivity, like wellness industry kind of shit, like can feel like a big long list of things here. They’re like, what am I gonna do all these things? And like, this feels really hard and really heavy. And now I’m not meeting all these expectations. And like almost that idea of like, just in this moment, what is the permission that I need?

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, and I think, for me, I’ve written permission slips. And then I haven’t seen it sort of actualizing or manifest whatever term you want to use until much later. But I, for me, it feels like it’s the practice of coming back to what you call the expert of my in myself, and say, Hmm, let me get curious of like, what is it that I might need today? how might I want to show up? That’s different than what I did before. Again, I don’t have to cling to this all the way. I’m just gonna give myself permission when your parents gave you a permission slip to go on a field trip. You know, you most people want it to go. But I’m sure if we didn’t go, you know, it probably wouldn’t be the worst thing ever. So let’s just take the pressure off of everything.

Steph Gaudreau
One of the places for my clients, and this community that permission seems to show up a lot, is in the permission to say no to things. And how that might intersect with boundaries. Recently, you had a post on Instagram, go show us a viral and it says yesterday I replied to an email with as much as I’m interested. This is beyond my capacity. Today, I did the same. Okay, so I guess a two-part question. Boundaries and permission-giving, you know, why do we in your perspective struggle so much with this? And I guess we’ll start with that.

Hayden Dawes
I can imagine there’s a lot of women in your community and I particularly when speaking to women, because oftentimes women provide most of the care, there’s not necessarily an opportunity to say no. So it’s a reflex. It’s a muscle that we haven’t had the opportunity to do. And then even beyond that. There’s so many men and some trans folks that are all people pleasers. We want to say guess we want to acquiesce. We have problems with conflict. We didn’t we weren’t demonstrated positive conflict in our families of origin. So these are all kind of just grabbing our reasons as to why it is so so hard to say no, sometimes. My goodness is it and I mean, I struggle with it for sure.

Hayden Dawes
And so I’m actually I’m surprised on one hand, I was like, I really didn’t think this was that big of a thing. But on the other hand, like duh, you should know that like most of the world struggles with saying no, we want to be yes people all the time. We don’t want to necessarily have that clarity because saying no is vulnerable. It’s very vulnerable. And I had one of my recent mentors say to me because I had been overcapacity overwhelmed, She said, Hayden, you need to slow down your yeses. And so now like, I may not, I may know in my body that this stumbling towards No, but I might verbally say out loud and I need some time to think about this. Let’s check-in about this a little bit later.

Hayden Dawes
And then one thing I’ll add to that is if people really push back, that’s more information for you about your relationship that you have with that person. But even beyond that, if I then have the clarity to say, No, I say it. And most of the time, I would want to do everything that my heart desires. So sometimes the person I have to say no to first is myself.

Steph Gaudreau
Hmm. I appreciate that. That was kind of part two of the question, because, you know, how do those like boundaries, and I’m so glad you brought up that. That very feeling that so many of us have, like saying no to this or not responding in the most favorable way, feels really vulnerable. Like, we don’t know how the person’s gonna react, or we don’t know what the next thing is going to be? How are we going to have to know like, just what, like, it’s the unknown? Hmm. And so I appreciate your sort of tying all that together?

Hayden Dawes
Yes Elsa, into the unknown. Yeah, and I think it’s into the unknown. And I think this is reminding me of something we talked about earlier. You know, as I get older, I don’t want to abandon myself. And sometimes it feels like such a betrayal to say yes, when I mean, no. And vice versa to say no, when, like everything in my body and my gut is saying, this is a guess for me. Or if I’m not sure,, give yourself permission to slow down and delay. And I get it sometimes that anxiety starts working. It’s like, Oh my gosh, I gotta give them an answer. Oh, my gosh, I gotta give them an answer. Oh, my gosh, I need to give them an answer so that I feel more at ease. You give them an answer. It’s not the right one. What happens? Regret?

Hayden Dawes
And you’re like shit! Wow, just slow down for five seconds.

Steph Gaudreau
Yeah, I love that slowing down, I think is so key. And I’ve noticed that for myself, too. You know, sometimes I just say, can I get back to you on this? You know, can I let you know about this by the end of the week?

Steph Gaudreau
And so I definitely This is something that it’s a practice for me as well. I cannot believe this. Time has gone so quickly. I’m very grateful that you said yes to being here. It truly is, is just such a gift to be able to chat with you and to be able to share your work with my listeners. What do you let folks know how they can, first of all, follow you on social media, but also just kind of get into your world a little bit more and explore these concepts of radical permission, self-compassion, and collective liberation.

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, so um, you can follow me on Instagram and Twitter on @HCDawes, D.A.W.E.S. You can also head over to my website, www.hcdawes.com, please sign up for my newsletter. I only send it once a month, at least right now. And it’s just a way that it’s been one of my favorite practices to kind of trace over what’s happened in the past month. As to open up a conversation we talk about everything from anti-racism, we’re to self-compassion. And there’s always a petty moment because it comes out on Tuesdays.

Steph Gaudreau
Do it just for the Petty Tuesday if nothing else. Seriously!

Hayden Dawes
Oh my gosh. So recently, someone that I interface with on Twitter. He had, you know, the Chex Mix and the different pieces. Yeah, which one is your favorite? And I’m like, duh, everyone knows this the rye piece. I had to put it in my newsletter and I said, please email me back if you have your favorite piece, and there’s only one piece.

Steph Gaudreau
The right one. I would agree with you on that. Oh my gosh, okay.

Hayden Dawes
Let me I’m sorry. One more thing. Yeah, it gets on my nerves and does make me feel petty when people shake the bag only to get that piece and they’re like sharing the bag with other people.

Steph Gaudreau
I will I will hunt and peck through. I don’t care what it is trail mix, whatever granola. There’s a granola that we get that has these little dried blueberries and I just can’t get enough of them and I will just kind of shake the bag looking for them.

Hayden Dawes
It’s okay if it’s a solo pack but if it’s a shared path is so rude to me.

Steph Gaudreau
Oh, I love it. Well, I’m sure there are lots of people who can relate to both sides of this. I’m, just so glad that we can share a laugh, share a little bit of a Petty Tuesday. We’ll definitely link all of that stuff up in the show notes. So if somebody is driving can’t get to it right now, they can head there as well and grab the links to go follow you and just continue to learn, continue to practice. You know, practice writing your first permission slip, you know, share it out. Tag Hayden.

Hayden Dawes
Yeah, tag me and use the hashtag #radicalpermission if you need some ideas. Just follow that hashtag so many wonderful people in the community.

Steph Gaudreau
I love it. Hayden Dawes, thank you so much for being a guest on this podcast. You’re a true gem. I really appreciate you and we’ll talk soon, hopefully.

Hayden Dawes
Thank you.

Steph Gaudreau
Thanks.

Steph Gaudreau
All right, that is a wrap on this episode with the wonderful Hayden Dawes. I just adore Hayden. I’m so grateful to him for taking time out of his extremely busy schedule to be with us and share his wisdom. You can find the show notes for this episode over at my website, StephGaudreau.com, including a full transcript. So if you know somebody who doesn’t like podcasts, or who is hearing impaired and wants to listen to the show, or wants to get this information in their hands, but cannot or prefers not to listen to podcasts, please go ahead and share the website with them because we have full transcripts of every show.

Steph Gaudreau
Also, if you liked this podcast episode, please share it out on IG stories. Go ahead and share your permission slip on Instagram stories and tag both Hayden and myself, we would love to see what you’ve given yourself permission for. And as always, make sure you subscribe on your favorite podcast app before you close out of this episode. And of course, if you want information about my brand new strength nutrition coaching program, this is a group program. If you’ve been wanting to work with me, but one on one, coaching isn’t a possibility, then I highly encourage you to seek out information about this group when it’s going to be launching and all that jazz to get on the list and get more information when I send it out. Go to StephGaudreau com/link. All right, that does it for this episode. Thank you so much for being here. We’ll talk very very soon. And until then, have a very strong very fun, very badass week.

Share this post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Hi, I'm Steph!

Nutrition and fitness coach for women, Lord of the Rings nerd, and depending on who you ask, crazy cat lady. My mission is to help you fuel for more, not less: bigger muscles, strength, energy, and possibilities. We’ll do it with my signature blend of science, strategy…and a little bit of sass.

DYNAMIC DUMBBELLS Program

Build muscle, strength & power AND take all the guesswork out of your workout with this 3x weekly written-for-you dumbbell strength program.

GET FREE DUMBBELL WORKOUTS

Strength Nutrition Unlocked

For women lifting weights who want to get stronger, build muscle, have more energy, and perform better. Implement the four keys you need to unlock your next level of strength in this 8-week program.

Get free dumbbell workouts