Is it Really Christian if it’s Fiction? With Eva Marie Everson and Taryn Souders

Eva Marie Everson is the CEO of Word Weavers International & the director of Florida Christian Writers Conference. She is a multiple award-winning author and speaker and is the 2022 recipient of the AWSA Lifetime Achievement Award. Eva Marie has served as a mentor for the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild, an adjunct professor at Taylor University, and is widely recognized and respected at writing conferences. A seminary graduate, she enjoys teaching the Word of God and speaking at women’s events and retreats. She is a wife, mother, and grandmother. She and her husband make their home in Central Florida where they are owned by their cat. To connect with Eva Marie, go to: EvaMarieEversonAuthor.com 

Taryn’s middle grade novels have been named to multiple state award lists, including Pennsylvania’s Young Readers Choice Awards, Alaska’s Battle of the Books, Ohio’s Buckeye Children and Teen’s Book Awards, Wisconsin’s Golden Archer Awards, Alabama’s Camellia Children’s Choice Book Award, Nebraska’s Golden Sower Awards, and Florida’s Sunshine State Young Readers Awards. Her book, Coop Knows the Scoop, was a 2021 Edgar Award nominee for Best Juvenile mystery novel. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and Word Weavers, International. She is represented by Sally Apokedak of Apokedak Literary Agency. Taryn currently lives in Sorrento, Florida with her husband, David, their three children, and two cats—an overly fuzzy Ragdoll named Mordecai and a polydactyl Hemingway named Sebastian—who like to terrorize flies. While she’s somewhat decent at math, she is terrible at science and has an intense dislike of tarantulas. To connect with Taryn, go to:  www.TarynSouders.com

What you will learn in this episode:

  • Eva Marie and Taryn’s background in writing and details about the Florida Christian Writers Conference
  • Common presumptions and misconceptions about Christian fiction and their logical inaccuracies
  • How God demonstrates His creativity through His creation, and why Eva and Taryn believe God made us to be creative beings
  • The dynamic of being a Christian author in the general  (non-Christian) market 
  • How weaving Christian principles into your work will help reach people that wouldn’t otherwise be reached
  •  The graphic reality of the Bible’s historicity and why it’s important to acknowledge
  • The value of using storytelling to subtly communicate important truths to a wide audience

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Necessary Endings, with April Ballestero

April Ballestero is a leadership expert and the founder of One Light Ahead, a coaching agency that helps business leaders shine at their brightest. With two decades of coaching experience, April knows exactly how to help business leaders achieve their full potential and become more effective, more energized and more enthusiastic in their interactions with their teams, clients, families and communities.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • Applying Dr. Henry Cloud’s book, Necessary Endings to your business and relationships
  • Different types of necessary endings and the emotions that often come with them
  • What it means to “cut the monkey tail” and how you can apply it to your situation
  • How applying “Necessary Endings” has helped April coach people through pivotal moments in their lives
  • The value of applying this to your relationships and how the concept of Building Bridges is connected to this elephant
  • Why April believes you should “Stay in curiosity.”
  • How to use your evidence to verify if its a necessary or unnecessary ending

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Detecting Confirmation Bias, with Ron Toye

Detecting Confirmation Bias

confirmation bias

the tendency to interpret new evidence as confirmation of one’s existing beliefs or theories.

This week’s guest, Ron Toye: Purchasing, refinancing, or renovating a home can be a complicated and intimidating process. Here at the Ron Toye Team, we begin by listening. We aim to understand your goals and priorities so we can offer home loan solutions that align with your current and long-term plans. We serve hundreds of families each year with their home investment journey. Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or long-time homeowner, we’re dedicated to providing you with industry-leading customer service that you will rave about.

My mentor and branch manager, Andy Tuttle, imprinted this message on my heart and it inspires my dedication to every client and partner I serve: “What do we help people with? One of the biggest financial decisions of their lives! How do we treat them? Like family!” From application to closing and beyond, I’m honored to provide the outstanding experience my clients and partners deserve.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • How Ron has personally experienced negative consequences of un-addressed confirmation biases
  • The effects of social and mainstream media on our expectations
  • How confirmation bias shows up in the mortgage sphere vs. the personal sphere, and the dangers of allowing it in either situation
  • How to recognize when you’re in a loop of confirmation bias
  • Why understanding yourself is key in avoiding confirmation bias
  • How being aware of your possible confirmation biases aligns with our theme this season of “Assessing and Re-framing your Evidence”

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Speeding Up Your Response Time, with Kelly Gonyo

Kelly is the founder and President of Blue Line Insurance Agency, Inc. She has been in the insurance business since 2001 and has worked in just about every role within the independent agency. Although she specializes in commercial insurance, she has experience in helping you with any of your insurance needs and loves to meet with any of her current or potential clients whenever she can. When she is not in one of the offices, she is either traveling or enjoying everything the Adirondacks and North Country has to offer.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • How today’s culture of instant-gratification affects workplace communication
  • Creative ways to open up and expand your conversations with your customers
  • How your response time directly affects your customers and team members
  • The importance of prioritizing fulfilling customer needs in a timely manner
  • Examples of how giving simple support can be powerful enough to make a noticeable difference in someone’s life

Resources:

Clarifying Evidence, with April Ballestero

Clarifying Evidence, with April Ballestero

April Ballestero is a leadership expert and the founder of One Light Ahead, a coaching agency that helps business leaders shine at their brightest. With two decades of coaching experience, April knows exactly how to help business leaders achieve their full potential and become more effective, more energized and more enthusiastic in their interactions with their teams, clients, families and communities.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • The new theme for this season of Addressing the Elephant in the Room is Clarifying Evidence
  • How One Light Ahead defines “Clarifying Evidence” and how it shows up in our lives
  • How to assess, reassess, and clarify the evidence that drives you forward
  • The importance of “owning where you stand” in your faith
  • The skill of being able to face all evidence, even the evidence that exposes our shortcomings
  • The gift of being able to forgive yourself after reassessing your evidence and moving forward with clarity

Resources:

Fears that Bind Us Together, with Chris Lord (Revisited)

Chris Lord has successfully built several Management Consulting businesses in Southern California, most recently as the General Manager for Slalom Consulting, where he led the Practice’s growth from under $2 million in 2010 to $30 million in 2015. After ‘retirement’ in Dec of 2015, he founded his own firm, Bridge Builder Coaching, to help Military Veterans through tough transitions in their lives. Bridge Builder Coaching helps Veterans transition out of Military service and into the corporate world through personal 1-on-1 coaching, assessments, networking, introductions, and facilitation.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • How our fears align us and bind us together
  • What fears we have that resonate with everyone
  • How to connect and resonate with more people
  • What Chris believes about having only one purpose
  • How to build bridges after experiencing a struggle as a leader
  • What is the Honor Foundation program

Resources:

Finding Balance in the Work You’re Passionate About, with Chris Lord (Revisited)

This is a revisited episode from Season 4, Episode 1.

Chris Lord has successfully built several Management Consulting businesses in Southern California, most recently as the General Manager for Slalom Consulting, where he led the Practice’s growth from under $2 million in 2010 to $30 million in 2015. After ‘retirement’ in Dec of 2015, he founded his own firm, Bridge Builder Coaching, to help Military Veterans through tough transitions in their lives. Bridge Builder Coaching helps Veterans transition out of Military service and into the corporate world through personal 1-on-1 coaching, assessments, networking, introductions, and facilitation.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • Why Chris’s Elephant is the question “how do you put everything into your professional passion and still deliver the best of yourself outside your work?”
  • Why it’s important to find the right balance and not bury yourself in your profession even if you love what you’re doing
  • Why everyone has an ego, and why your ego plays a big role in stepping into your passion without letting it overwhelm you
  • How Chris’s current role helping Military vets switch gears to find their new lives mirrors his own efforts to find balance and follow his calling
  • Why listening to the people around him helps Chris stay grounded, and why you should read “The Trusted Advisor” by David Maister, Charles Green and Robert Galford
  • Why fear causes people to focus on themselves instead of others, and why it’s important to attain a balance between selflessness and selfishness in your relationships
  • How Chris recognizes his fear of not being accepted, and how he has worked to overcome his fear
  • Why Chris has realized that it’s important to allow himself to be vulnerable and trust in others not to tear him down

Resources:

Connect with Chris Lord on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/clord1/

The Dangers of Making Assumptions, with Jordan White

Jordan White is an avowed introvert, experienced leader, and Self-Leadership coach. Driven by his passion for creating a world with less pain and suffering, he takes immense pride in providing compassionate and inspiring coaching services to current and aspiring leaders who tend to identify as inward, radically humble, cerebral, quiet, and introverted. As a Self-Leadership coach, his goals include helping his clients maximize their scientifically-validated thinking assets while minimizing their thinking biases. He provides clients with the tools and a safe space to explore their unique path of least resistance to their success while simultaneously contributing to building a society of Valuegenic Leaders.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • How assumptions show up both as receivers and givers of information
  • The trickle-down effect that leaders initiate when they make assumptions
  • How you can be sure you have the necessary tools to assess your own perspective
  • Why defining values and expectations is so important in successful communication in your relationships
  • How asking questions is the remedy to making dangerous assumptions
  • Some misconceptions and assumptions around introversion 
  • Why you should intentionally add compassion and curiosity to your perspective

Resources:

Hiring a Virtual Assistant, with Dave Braun

At HireMyVA.com, Dave helps people to reclaim their business freedom through hiring and thriving with virtual assistants via multiple courses and a community, as well as a White Glove service that finds amazing VAs from the Philippines.  He also partners with Larry Broughton, CEO of broughtonHOTELS on not only HireMyVA, but on several projects and businesses, including coaching and masterminding, and has consulted with hundreds of entrepreneurs these last few years, including many businesses run by military veterans. Finally, at Pro Website Creators (PWC), Dave loves to work with clients to help their websites be the hub of their marketing wheel! He’s invested years learning the technical aspects of WordPress web design, e-commerce, as well as writing copy to help make client’s messages clear and not confusing. PWC’s mission is “Helping super-busy entrepreneurs who value growing their business over figuring out the technical stuff.” 

Prior to all of this, Dave worked at a semiconductor company for almost 30 years, led teams across multiple continents and holds six patents. He also has co-created several iPhone apps. Dave enjoys spending time with his wife, working out, attending Mariners Church in Irvine, CA, bringing inspiring messages into the inmates at the Orange County Jails, and is a certified John Maxwell team coach. He’s married to his amazing wife of 39+ years, Cheryl, who recently retired from being Chief Program Officer at Irvine Public Schools Foundation, and has two grown sons, one daughter-in-law, and one amazing grandson!

What you will learn in this episode:

  • Hiring a VA actually requires that you address two major elephants: lack of trust and fear that you lack experience
  • Trust is always a requirement when bringing someone new into your business, so it’s important to have systems to verify that they’re trustworthy
  • Many business owners don’t realize their vision is actually impossible to achieve on their own; a true business requires a team. “A business is a profitable enterprise that works with or without you… if it’s dependent on you, then you have a job.”
  • Why Dave started HireMyVA.com and how it helps address a challenge that many business owners face 
  • How to maximize your Virtual Assistant experience using a 3-step approach

Resources:

Addressing Fear and Overwhelm, with Richard Hall

Richard Hall is the founder of BottomLine Lawyers, PC. He has a unique breadth of experience which has enabled him to meld technology, sophisticated legal analysis, “outside the box” strategies and a collaborative style to create innovative solutions with his clients. Richard attended law school at the University of La Verne and was admitted to the California Bar in 1988 and the Federal Bar in 1989. Many lawyers come to the law without any practical business experience, and few come with significant management experience. Through serendipity rather than design, Richard is an exception. His prior business experience afforded him a fast track to complex civil trials and the opportunity to work closely with business clients. Richard is also a licensed California Real Estate Broker and has performed feasibility analysis of investment projects, including historic preservation district qualified buildings. 

Richard performs pro bono services for several Northern California judicial districts, is a Past President of the Auburn Chamber of Commerce, former Board member of the Downtown Business Association, and member of: Rotary Club of Auburn, Placer County Bar Association, Sacramento Valley Bankruptcy Forum, National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys (NACBA) and American Bankruptcy Institute (ABI). He has also served as California Director for a nationwide bar review and as a lecturer focused on Professional Responsibility. Before attending law school Richard was an executive in the photographic and real estate industries and he conducted performance and budget analysis for the US Government’s Amraam missile project. Richard has also served his country and is a veteran of the United States Air Force.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • How fear and overwhelm tend to affect small business owners at a higher rate 
  • Encouragement and advice for type-A personalities that struggle with perfectionism 
  • How the elephants of fear and overwhelm grow when they are not addressed
  • The necessity of earning trust before helping someone address their own elephants
  • Why Richard has adopted the term “Action kills fear” and how it has helps him stop feeding this elephant
  • Some practical ways you can declutter your mind and prioritize your tasks

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