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“You absolutely can claim space, because you don’t have to feel fearless. You just have to do the thing that will make you feel like a more empowered human being.” – Eliza VanCort
We all have a right to claim space – which means to live the life of our choosing unapologetically and bravely. Today’s Finding Brave guest provides inspiring practical tips and guidance on how to claim our space, but also urges each of us to think about intersectionality, bravery and anger as useful tools in claiming space for ourselves and others.
Eliza VanCort is an in-demand consultant, speaker, and writer on communications, career and workplace issues, and women’s empowerment. The founder of The Actor’s Workshop of Ithaca, she is also a Cook House Fellow at Cornell University, an advisory board member of the Performing Arts for Social Change, a Diversity Crew partner, and a member of Govern For America’s League of Innovators.
Eliza has led a life that any Hollywood studio would immediately dismiss as being too hard to believe. Her incredible, breathtaking journey of overcoming extreme challenges, in childhood and later as an adult, inspired her to dedicate her life to helping people of all races, genders, and backgrounds empower themselves to claim space.
Her first book, A Woman’s Guide to Claiming Space: Stand Tall. Raise Your Voice. Be Heard., hit shelves May 11, 2021.
Eliza’s story is a powerful reminder that it’s so important to keep persevering as best you can, even though you may want to fall down on your knees at times. Recognize your bravery and your immense value in this world, and let it help you claim your space, because this is the pathway to being heroically brave, and it will inspire and uplift so many others around you as well.
Highlights from this Episode:
- What “claiming space” means to Eliza [4:44]
- Eliza’s traumatic childhood and the actual moment she started to associate invisibility with safety [5:41]
- Another crisis later in her life that defies belief, and how the support of the women in her life dramatically impacted her recovery [10:27]
- The 3 main things that Eliza feels helped her overcome so much trauma in her life [13:44]
- Some big reframes that she has made around the concepts of bravery and time [15:03]
- Why fear is such a powerful tool for us to use, and the reasons society is so averse to it [18:03]
- 5 powerful ways to start claiming your space right now [22:01]
- What we should understand about communication in a corporate setting, and the best ways to deal with cases of microaggression that we may face [32:46]
- Eliza’s thoughts on the feminist movements and the challenges we still face as women [34:38]
- A sample of just some of the life-changing wisdom from her new book [38:24]
For More Information:
Order my new book The Most Powerful You today!
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Other resources mentioned:
Eliza’s People’s Exclusive, Kidnapped 3 Times by Her Mentally Ill Mother as a Child, Eliza VanCort Helps Women Live ‘Bravely’
Man’s Search for Meaning, Viktor E. Frankl
Kathy’s Forbes Post, What Is Feminism, And Why Do So Many Women And Men Hate It?
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“I had to build my communication back from the ground up, and it was again the support of the women in my life that made it possible for me to recover.” [12:06]
“I don’t think that there’s somebody out there who’s done it all on their own. Whenever you start hearing those stories, it’s never true.” [14:37]
“Being brave is not the absence of fear. Being brave, in my mind, is actually terror combined with action. [It’s] terror meets action, because there’s nothing brave about doing something if it doesn’t scare you.” [15:24]
“I think society has created this very false ideal that we need to be happy and comfortable all the time.” [19:01]
“If somebody is going to try to use a word to silence you, then just don’t let it [happen].” [37:42]
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