Are you an aspiring leader who knows you have more to offer but you can't seem to get ahead? Do you frequently feel overwhelmed and undersupported? Listen to the overcome to become podcast as we talk about actionable tasks and mindsets that you can apply to begin leading yourself. Hi, my name is Angela Buckley, your host and author of the Strength and Nature Leadership series. I'm a mother, consultant, triathlete and author and overcome to become. I share with you the science, fact and experience proven lessons.
I've learned in my own leadership journey to beat burnout. Thanks for listening. This is our client episode of season one of overcome to become. Thank you all for joining us on this journey. This is one of the series that we've been putting together for the overcome the overwhelm class as part of the strength and Nature Leadership series. So I have been working with Katie now. I have known Katie for many, many years. Katie O'Keefe is a wonderful.
Musician she is a wonderful academic. She is a wonderful mom and a community citizen in Columbus. So Katie, would you like to tell us a little bit more about yourself?
I was a professional musician for about 30 years. I specialized in folksong, most especially in the German community, but also in the Irish community. And I also specialized in Renaissance and chant in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Columbus where I was employed for many, many years as music director. Following a surgery I lost my voice and so I decided to go back to school because I had never finished my bachelor's degree. So at 46 I went in to finish my last two years of a bachelor's degree and finished up when I was 48. Got my first grown up job at Ohio State University and...
And I was off and running and I worked there as an instructional designer, so I helped teachers teach better online. That's my current position. And as you may imagine, sometimes it gets really stressful when you're getting down to the wire on some things. You're working with the team. So it's really important to keep yourself, you know, grounded and and able to move forward with your tasks when that happens and that's kind of where Angela came in in the middle of the pandemic.
I love that you use the word grounded. It was completely the word that was going around in my head when you were saying there. So thank you, thank you for using that word. It makes me excited. But as you know what with me pursuing my PhD also in organizational leadership or development in the education system, I love what you do. It's so helpful and I can imagine.
I know I've experienced this. People think they know more about learning than they do, so I imagine that maybe you guys were feeling undervalued prior to COVID.
I think it depended on the the spot where I was. I've been in three different colleges at the university and the college where I was when the pandemic began. We were very valued by the faculty and believe it or not, we had worked very hard to embed ourselves in the program that I was working with. They really appreciated all of the work that we had done to get them to move some of their lectures online because when the pandemic hit they had it three month running start.
They were already ready and we were able to get everything together and up online and ready to go within one week of the of the pandemic closures being announced. So that was huge.
That's amazing. Good Job.
Thank you. It was. It was exciting, and I was the only ID on staff at the moment. And so, I mean, I'm very, I'm very grateful to the faculty that I was working with for hanging with me and hanging tough and trying new things. And they did a great job.
But it was one of those things where the challenges just never ended. We never knew. We didn't know what was happening, we didn't know what was going to happen next. We had no idea what was going to happen in the fall, and we were trying to plan ahead so that we could get ahead of this still. And it just it just never ended. The pressure was immense. And it was all by myself in a in a an office that was designed to be run by two.
And so that's where it got really difficult. So the sacrifices that I was making personally to be essentially two people at once were not being appreciated the way that I felt that they ought to and I and I think that's really that's that's the case of what happened there. But like after the pandemic I moved to a new college, a different college, and they're all teachers and so they really do know a lot and and they really do kind of...
They're not sure they want to talk to me; they they think maybe I make might make things more difficult for them and I always tell people it's my job to make your life not stink. That's my job. I want you to, I want you to have a wonderful semester and not one that makes you want to you know set your hair on fire. That is not where I want you to be. So that's that's kind of how it is.
Right. It's... I find sometimes that our work is .... welcomed with open arms and sometimes I feel that I have been inserted into a position that management thinks I should be in, but maybe the people are not all that receptive to the services I have to offer.
Exactly. And that's what I'm finding, you know, as I move around the university and different colleges have different cultures and, you know, as an organizational behavioralist.
Yeah, you understand how that works and and, and really it's kind of odd. I mean it's one university and it really is one university and there is a university culture, but there are many different microcultures within that university that exist, that are built around a variety of things, you know like the professional identity of people and the the work that they do with the community...
Or not at all with the community and all of those things impact how they deal with their students in the classroom, and thus how I deal with them to get that message to the students. So.
Yes, as a person who has multiple degrees from Ohio State. And different colleges, right? Every single one is from a different college. Yeah, I identify and understand and empathize all at the same time with the difference in the cultures from college to college within the university.
For sure, yes.
It does make it challenging. I mean you are still working for the same entity, but not really. So yeah.
And people influence that regardless, right? Regardless of the personalities that tend to go into a field. You also have individuals right that make the day or break your day.
Yes, absolutely, 110%.
And COVID did not help any of us, right? I mean, let's be honest, even those of us who might be calm and enjoy working with new challenges and look for change management opportunities. COVID was not a change that I was looking for and I really enjoy change management and changing and understanding how to bring people together collaboratively. And I will say, yeah, COVID was pretty rough. Yeah, yeah, lots of changes. We weren't expecting that.
Probably true. Yeah. I, I, I can, I can remember one day in the middle of in the middle of June, we were having a meeting about. Um, I think we were hiring a new a new person to take some of the weight off of me. And we were talking about some of the details around what this person needed to be able to do, and I just burst into tears. I'm like, right there on the zoom call, just falling apart completely. I just shut my video off and shut my audio off. And I mean, I was a major part of that conversation and I could not even have it. I just, it was like one thing too many and, you know, it just got...
It just got to the point where everything was changing constantly and nothing...And it wasn't even like we're gonna change and we're gonna go this direction because I like being really decisive about these things. If I pick something, we're going in that direction. And there were sometimes when, you know, we would pick something and go that direction, and then we would have to shift because something else happened.
Katie, that's so very German of you
German American of you?
Yes, I know. Yeah, well, me and Descarte, you know, Descarte about that too. And his method of reasoning. Pick a direction and go in that direction. Which I mean, you know, that's how you get out of the woods.
It is true, and then adjust as you go, right? But standing still will not get you anywhere.
Will not get you anywhere, that's right.
So can you just talk to me a little bit about some of the emotions that you were going through? What led you into, if you're willing to share, so if I ask anything that's too too much, please let me know...
What can you identify or articulate some of the emotions that lead to a breakdown or crying? I mean, crying in a professional setting is hard, right? As, as as women, it's probably the one thing everyone tells us never to do.
And yet, right don't show weakness. I work with almost all men.
How did you get there and then how did you recover?
So how I got there was by asking more of myself than anyone else was asking.
Also very German of you, German-American, yes.
Come in, take charge, make it happen. Make everybody's day and and, you know, and keep everybody kind of floating. I mean, I felt like that was my responsibility. My partner had, had had, a major mental illness occurrence like six months before the pandemic and she wasn't coming back and I was devastated. She was my friend too and I was just devastated because I was missing my friend. I was missing my, my leader who had been my leader since we started. He moved to another place and I was angry because I felt like I was all alone and these people had abandoned me and I cared for them and I was sad.
That all of this work was going into keeping people alive and keeping them safe.
And these people were, there were people that didn't appreciate it, like to the point that they were endangering other lives. And that was frustrating. I was working in a in a, in a health field college at the time. And so I was hearing first hand from the clinical professors what was happening in the hospitals and in the pharmacies and in the doctor's offices. And I was, I was thinking.
How can you not see that this is dangerous? Why would you ever think this would be OK to just like, oh, we don't need a mask, we're out of here. You know, that was very frustrating. And I know that sounds really like very side issue, but in the moment that was very, very important. I mean, they were endangering the lives of my faculty, the clinical faculty who were teaching and so.
You know, having that worry, which was not my worry to have, but it was a worry.
And then having the worry of, you know, making sure that we got it all done and we got it all done correctly to the best of our abilities. That that was just, it was a lot. It was a lot to carry for an entire college.
I recall, you were also moving.
You were building your home. You were building on.
So you had you had that going on, and since we tend to walk in many of the same social circles, I imagine you were also grieving. We lost many, many people in early stages, many musicians, many choir members. One of our social clubs lost 25% of its membership not because they didn't sign up. They passed away in the last two years. I don't know if you've seen that number, but.
No, I know.
Even if we're not announcing every single loss, you feel it because we see the people no longer with us, right?
Many holes. It leaves holes in the, in the cultural makeup of of your circle. Even if you weren't, you know, their best buddy. You didn't sit next to them in choir or anything. You were still looking for that person across the way and you know listening for their laugh
Well, and the support choir is community. So you've you've said many times today, you felt alone, you felt isolated. And one of the topics that we talk about is community, the building of community. Even as we learn how to set boundaries, we have to build the community so that as we establish boundaries here that some people may not appreciate for their own reasons. We have to have the strength and the support of the others that reinforce our boundaries and so much of our social fabric became a hole. I mean the gauze simply was, was missing right during that time period. So you're adding on: Stress at home like you're living, you know, family.
Stresses as well because I I think you had a family member with some illness. Yeah you had switching jobs switching of your your manager that you respected your your partner at work was no longer there. I mean and then let's just summarize COVID, right like all the things that go on it's a lot. It's absolutely a lot to handle.
You know, sometimes crying is the first step of saying, OK, I need some help, yes?
Yeah, yeah. I have a friend who tell who told me that crying is the final step in a stress process. So like if you're if you're like stressed out and you're crying, that's good because it means you're almost done with that piece. And it's, and it's like a pressure valve like on a pressure cooker. It lets some of the steam out and and resets everything, which I think is absolutely right. But if you've gotten to that point where the pressure has had to go off. Then something is wrong inside the pan and you have to figure out what it is so that, so that you can fix it before it blows its top right.
Yes. So what did you do? Because you are in a phenomenal place right now, right? I even see where you have your little She-Den; what are you calling your room?
It's my studio.
Studio OK, excellent. I love it.
It is my studio.
And I I even have that on the door. It's very exciting. So there were there, were a few things that I did. One of the first things that I did was you reached out to me and said, "Hey, I can help you"
And I said, "OK, I'm going to let you" because I, I don't let people help me. That's one of the first things, first rules of being a German American woman. Never let anybody help you. But that needs to go.
Working on that, all of us.
But that just needs to go away. Because you absolutely have to have people. People do need other people. And I definitely needed somebody who knew more than I did about how to handle burnout.
Um, so one of the first things you told me is you need to eat decent food. And I was like.
So Nutty Buddies are off the traveling squad. That makes me very sad. But OK. But that was the first thing. The second thing you told me that that really stuck with me. And I still do this, like even now, today, like today. Like I did this when I get restless or unfocused or unable to, you know?
Get my brain to stop reeling to get up. Stand up.
Put a jacket on and go outside and take a walk and then come back.
For those of you on the podcast world, I just did a little happy dance. It is my favorite, favorite thing to advise, right? Yes, go outside and be grateful for the world that's around us.
And it literally works every time. And of course, right now it's, you know, fall. At this moment in time, it's fall and all the trees in my neighborhood are in full color. It's beautiful out and so I'm, I'm just I'm delighted that I that I took that time for myself because when I got back I was able to refocus and dig back in and really make some progress on the problem I was working on. And that's, that's like one of the most invaluable things that I got. And then I don't remember if you told me to do this or if I just intuited it, but I realized that one of the things that I was missing was the creative activity of music.
My, my, my music, my musicianship. I conduct. And so there is no conducting, you know, your your phone and you know, it's kind of hard to do on zoom also. Just, I mean it's just not an easy thing. And especially in the early days of the pandemic, they, they had this squelch thing going on where if you were both talking at once, somebody shut it down.
So yeah, that was not gonna be a thing. We were not gonna be singing together.
My instrument does not even fit in a screen, so yeah, you know that I was doing all solo work by myself.
I did a couple little videos with my piano, but ain't nobody paying me to play piano in public so either.
Now my instrument is my instrument and I am happy to perform.
and lecture and whatever, but the piano is not my instrument.
Yeah, no, see, that's. Yeah, I have a keyboard.
Yeah, but I have a piano.
Yeah, I use this keyboard when I get stuck on a on a problem like a puzzle that I'm sorting out. Like if I'm reading and, and doing something where I have to pick a piece of philosophy apart or something, I if I get stuck or I go, Oh my gosh, my brain is full.
I'll go over here and I'll play a piece or two on the piano and it is always terrible. You know, nobody needs to hear this at all but but it helps me. It helps me kind of like unwind that that problem. And so when I go back, it's like the walk, when I go back, I can, I can do more with it. And neurologically, you know, from a from a learning perspective, neurologically this makes total sense because they've proven that having exercise after you've studied actually helps you retain better.
It activates that diffuse thinking that you need in order to sort all the information that you just got into its little holes so your brain isn't full anymore. It really does get full, so.
Katie, you're taking over my lines.
I love the ID stuff. You know it.
Is, and I really appreciate that you said that because I wanted to apply that actually to the music, right? The reason the music helps us so much is that it drops our heart rate. You focus on your breathing. That helps you a lot, right? Like that breathing, you're relaxing some of those muscles. Even though it might not be a song that everybody else wants to hear you play, you've probably played it a million times.
I probably played the same songs I played in 4th grade still, because they bring me a sense of relaxation and my fingers can I can talk and look the other direction and my fingers can still play because there's so much muscle memory and there's so much calming associated with the same silly songs.
That again, all the piano teachers are glad that we take these lessons, because then we know we're going to hire others piano teachers for our children. But we will not be out in public. I'm not taking any of their money away, but it matters, right? Because listen, we're we're relaxing, we're using the muscles, we're breathing, and you're using that creativity in order to recenter yourself. And music is such a connection. You've just connected to your childhood.
When you felt calm, right? Like when my dad comes in the screen, dad, there's the piano. It's a good thing. Like it's a literal management technique in our family.
Why don't you play some Christmas songs and as he ages there was a few more notes that are falling out or you hear the little clinkers here and there and you know what? He is happy.
He's happy and you feel that happiness as you bring that in. So I don't always, unless I know the person with the music. I don't always recommend music because for some people they feel like that's outside or you're pushing someone in a zone. But that's why we start with the physical elements of the walk, of drinking water, of eating right. We start with our little physical boxes that we know we can check and we move on. And there are certain activities that I feel like are high bang for your buck when it comes to overwhelm; and definitely, music is one of them, yeah.
It really is, because it activates so many pieces of your brain. I mean it, it activates... I used to tell my my choirs... It activates your mind, your body, and your soul to sing to sing a church hymn well, you know.
Meditate on it. And together, I mean, and they've proven that too. I mean, there's that whole vagus nerve, you know, that that calms and and sues.
To that community is it cannot be overstated. And so, I mean like in a time like COVID where we were not with our church families, so we weren't singing every every week with our church families and we weren't singing in choirs because we couldn't stand together in order to, you know, do it. And and we were not in our offices and we were at home with our families, which is lovely. However, sometimes the house.
It's really small, really fast. And it doesn't matter how big your house is. So, so, I mean that community that we have assembled, our family of choice, if you will, has, you know, doesn't have any legs. I mean, you can't, you can't get to them, you can talk to them. But there's something about being with a human being, another human being in a room that that is very special about, you know, about.
About singing about, you know, listening to live music. I remember Michael and I went to see Hello Dolly right after, right after the the first wave of the pandemic. I was sitting in the theater and realized that this was the first time I had heard live music, like, live musicians in months, months and months and I I almost cried.
It was just it was. It feels so different to be sitting there, so I know this is way off tangent.
But it's. But it's not, right? It's one of the elements that's truly important to you.
To help you overcome the overwhelm, like when we talk about bang for your buck, right? Like the amount of time. music is a critical element, especially for someone who is a trained musician. And you have so much music deeply rooted in your family as well. And and that's how we met, right? Why did we meet? Because I had a 3 year old that doesn't stand still and still had a beautiful voice.
Yes. Oh my gosh.
Yeah, but their child had a beautiful voice and still does.
And there weren't that many choir directors that had patience for someone with his energy.
But still I mean but because of you and because of the patience you put into him in that time, he is still performing, right?
And having, having that and so again on topic, right, it matters that you have this opportunity to ground yourself, to create that community for yourself to breathe, which we know drops our heart rate and understanding and and then that COVID period of missing that so dramatically.
Yeah. Yeah. And then just just, you know, taking that time to think about how can I be creative today even if I can't sing today, even if I can't sit down at my piano today?
What? What are the things that I am doing that are creative? So, you know, finding that creativity in the things that I was already doing. So we were rehabbing part of our house and adding on. And I discovered that I really loved building things from IKEA. All right. I know everybody's going to, you know, drag me away with my straight jacket and everything. Only crazy people love this, but I do. I love it.
It's one of my favorite things to do because I feel like there's this useful object when I'm done that I build. So I have an investment in it myself, and I feel like it creates a more harmonious space for my for my family to live in. So I really, I really enjoyed that. So we put together this library, which is absolutely lovely. I had taken it over for a long time as my office space.
Until we built in the garage, we built this space. Now it's a library again and people can just sit in there and read and enjoy and and you know.
That was a creative thing that I did, and it was and it was a.
a piece me that I hadn't explored before.
It's physical, yeah. And it provides a sense of accomplishment. When we first started talking and you had said, I reached out to you, I was observing that you had taken a day off here, taken a day off there, and it didn't seem to me that you were feeling recovered. And then I think you also maybe tripped a few times and you just, it just didn't seem like you.
And so I was was concerned, right? So that's why I reached out and said, hey, can I help you?
Yeah, yeah, that was that was a really ...I didn't. I couldn't see it because I was in this situation. I was just like, well, how can I manage this? Well, you know, if you need a break, take a break. So I did. And then I ended up using up all my vacation time, taking one little break here and one little break there, and it wasn't helping. I was still coming back, just as burnt out as I was before I went on for my three day vacation to nowhere.
And yeah, it was not particularly helpful and it was really starting to to get to me in ways that I didn't even realize were stress responses. So.
Having gone through that, how would you look at yourself and look at your life now and say I don't want to be there again?
What did I learn? Do I want to apply in my life so that I never get to that point again?
In August, I had the fall that really roughed me up pretty badly. I I fell and hit my head on a tree. It was terrible.
And I had been doing the same kinds of things. I had fallen back into that pattern where I was like, I'm going to take a day here and a day there. I'd used up all my sick time. I'd used up all my vacation time. But I had also had COVID in July, and I had also buried my father-in-law in July. And I was not thinking about those links until I fell again.
And they asked me if I was under a lot of stress and I'm like.
Where have I heard this before? I'm like, you know, sometimes it takes a 2 by 4 to the head to get me to you know, think more clearly or or falling on a tree route. That also will help I think. You know, in terms of identifying the your stress responses I think.
You need to pay attention to.
How you move around in the world? I mean, like are you moving more stiffly? That's something that happens to me. You know, as you're moving about, does it feel like you feel like you're 9000 years old? I mean and and that's really.
It's actually a sign of depression, right. So it's some maybe it's an early, early onset, right, that that weight. Yeah, weight.
Yeah. And and it just makes my joints all hurt, you know, when I get to that point. And so there's that.
Unexpected falls, tripping and falling. Most especially tripping because that means you're not really paying attention to what's going on around you, dropping things more often than you normally would.
For getting to hit send on your e-mail and letting it sit in your outbox, those are all small things that kind of point to the fact that you've lost focus on what you're doing and and you might need to get some help to kind of make it.
To make it go away.
How did you ask for help?
How did I ask for help?
So last time I called you. Yeah. What did you do this time?
What did I do this time? This time I went to my boss and I said.
I think I am really burnt out and I'm really concerned. I was. I'm very fortunate because I have, I have a really good relationship with my boss and I feel like she listens and is, is active in finding a solution. OK, you know that is actionable,
Is she hiring? Not everybody's hiring, there's a lot of people that want that kind of.
I know. She she is, she would like to be hiring. There is a position that is open on our team, but we don't have approval to fill it yet. So they're still doing the the big old hiring freeze thing, but.
But I think that if if you don't have a boss, that's fantastic. You need to find somebody that you can confide in to, to say, hey, you know, I'm stressed out and I need somebody to talk to if that's the way you process things. Not everybody does. I like to process things out loud, kind of talk about the problems and make them seem either.
Have them seem really huge and have somebody wick them down into something that I can actually deal with or to have, you know, somebody to just listen while they spin it out and figure that out for myself, you know? So those are two ways that I that I deal with it. And this time I I also, my mom recognized it because I tripped and I fell and I was like.
This is not OK and so when I got home from the hospital from having you know, the CAT scan and everything and the lump is still not gone, I I, I, I felt that injuries take a long time to heal.
8 weeks ago and I still have a lump. So I I was talking to my mom and I said I need help. I need somebody to help me, you know, remember telling me to drink my water. Then I need to eat my vegetables. I need you to help me, you know, say hey, you're stuck.
Well, instead of pouting on the couch, why don't you go take a walk, you know, and just kind of poke me a little bit?
Accountability partner, right? So your mom lives with you.
Yep, mom lives with me.
You enlisted an accountability partner.
I did. I did and...
She's seen you before at this point, right? So.
Yep, she was. She went through it with the with me the last time too. Hmm. So and and saw how much?
Just taking those small steps and they're small, it's so easy. It's just, it's not a huge time commitment. It's not a huge outlay of anything. I mean it's just shifting just a tiny bit so they so that you can, so that you can get through the day more gracefully. I mean it, it really just, it helps.
Their tiny shifts that have huge impact in our day to day.
Absolutely I I.
Appreciate and applaud you for recognizing that you were getting close to this, the same overwhelm that you were last year, but I also want to say.
I want to share a little bit, that it's OK and also a little bit normal to get to that point without recognizing it because it's such a slow creep. You have a child who doesn't sleep well, of course, as the mom or the parent, the caring parent, right? You're with your child, you're with your child. Until all the sudden one day you realize I have not had sleep for how long, but it creeps up on you, right?
This year my sister was diagnosed with stage 3C breast cancer.
The day her baby was born.
Ohh and it was in the height of the there is no baby formula and so it was.
It was rough. There was. There are no good words to describe the emotional rollercoaster associated with what she had to go through, and completely unfair because the doctor ignored her complaints for four months.
So throw in a a justified sense of anger.
Right. The the family responded. But all summer people were there caring for the baby, taking turns helping, talking. Some are doers. In our family we have Marys and Marthas, some are doers and some are there to sit. And I did work from Cincinnati one week and I just held the baby. I just held the baby because she couldn't. And that was a crazy thing right there. But just just to sit in her presence.
And let her grieve the life that she had imagined and not be able to have at that moment, right? Yeah. So the cancer treatment has been so effective that in the last two scans, they've tried two different methods they can no longer detect cancer.
So I'm dressed. Makeup on the whole 9 yards on the way to a gig.
In my dress and I get a text message.
And I I just started crying, like the pressure I didn't even realize. And my poor sister, right? Like she's the one going through this. I'm just a bystander.
I like I almost couldn't breathe. I almost had. I had to pull my car over because the pressure release was so immense.
Honestly, I didn't even realize that I was under that level of pressure, right? Like, of course I care for my sister. I love my sister. I love her baby, right? Like we're there for her. But I'm... I tend to be a person who cries in happiness, not a person who cries under pressure. Like, I might get it done, do it, solve it. But I feel like these people, myself included, who go out of their way to solve other people's problems also are more likely to get to the overwhelm.
Because we are doers and Do Do Do and then we don't maybe recognize the pressure that we've put on ourselves or the burden that we've chosen to carry and then when it's lifted.
I mean, like 45 minutes later I'm already playing my instrument. So in public with. Thankfully I have fantastic guys in my band, right? And I just, I had a huge emotional rush, like almost like a sugar low.
Where all of that, from just the emotions coming and going. And I'm like I guys, I ... I need a break. Like I had to walk away and and my instrument requires so much breath, so much control and that focus to play, which helps me in all these stressful situations. But it got to a point where I was like I must put my instrument down and walk away and our our setup is such that it's made to do that.
Anyways, where I was like, "You guys got to carry it for 10 minutes. I need water. I need, I need a minute."
And it was, I would say that pressure release was more than a week of really working through the emotions of even recognizing how heavy that burden had been that I was carrying, of course...
Pray, meditate, wish for the best, work for the best, do all the outcomes, all these things, visualization. But at the end of the day, hardship is hardship and grief is grief. And when it relieves like that it's pretty fascinating, but I just want to say that we should all be careful and not criticize ourselves if we find ourselves in overwhelm again because it just creeps up and life is hard and the way we get through it is by building those communities and having wonderful relationships with, you know, in our, in our case, our musicians community, but talking to you, talking to my bandmates.
They were there. They're like, we got you.
Right. And like knowing I've been playing with these guys for five and 10 years, knowing that when they say it, they mean it. That level of support makes all the hardships bearable.
I think that's true. We've obviously, we've been through a lot in in the years that we've known each other. My family's been through a lot. We lost my dad to cancer in 2017. Dad was a driving force of our musical life in our home and was the driving force behind musical life for a lot of people because of his life, his position at the at the Manor core, taking my mom and was it was something that I had planned for.
But it was not something that I thought I was going to get to do as soon as I did. I you know, it just it was more than I was really ready for.
At the time when it happened, and there was no way I was going to tell her no at all, I she had welcomed us into her house and I certainly was not going to tell her mom, sorry, you're stuck where you are. No, absolutely not. But I relied on my friends to get me through that. It was absolutely critical to have that community support to get through that what I'm seeing with her, and I know she wouldn't mind me sharing this.
Is that she's isolating herself right now and and we talk about this often and I think that.
It has. It has a bad effect on her, you know, because all she has is talk to is me and my husband, who she likes. But she just likes him, you know. I mean, he's not hers.
Yeah, that's OK we have our people.
Yeah. So yeah. And and I think that that overwhelm really can be like the frog in the water, in the boiling water. If you start with cold water, you know, the frog has.
Boiled before to jump out, right?
Yeah, before he knows to jump out. That's right. And so I and I think that that's how that's how I get with stress, is I keep taking it on and all of a sudden I'm like, whoa, it's hot in here.
Yeah, yeah, well.
I've trained and as an endurance athlete and I have many of these tactics that we teach during this class. They're part of my life because, yeah, because of the music and because of the physical activities that I participate in. And so I believe that it allows me to handle quite a bit; however, there is a breaking point for everyone and it's important to understand where that is and.
One, try never to get to it. But two, have that strong sense of community where somebody is not afraid to reach out and say, I've seen this before. No thank you, no thank you for you. Right, I'm here for you.
So, Katie, thank you so much for sharing your journey. I have one other question for you though.
You've recently started an awesome endeavor with your kids, also musically centered.
A little bit about that excitement and then we really do need to hop off here.
OK, so I started a record label, which is not something that I ever thought I would ever do. This is, and I really when I started it, I didn't really know much about it. I thought, no, this is not for me. But as I read about it, I realized that there were so many ways that this could go wrong for a young band, not just my kids who are a little older.
But they're still pretty young. For me anyway. But you know, other young bands, bands that have only been together for a few years or maybe even a year, who, really.
Don't know what they're looking at when they're trying to navigate the the possibility of getting a record produced for themselves. OK, you know, you don't want to be sitting there with the Fisher-price recording studio and and trying to do this, but you also don't want to necessarily throw it into Pro Tools and turn the reverb up on all of the all of the things too.
Friends, do we turn the reverb up all the time?
Well, yeah, but I mean that's appropriate for you.
That's appropriate for.
That is not appropriate for punk rock.
Just OK, so.
OMA Records, right? OMA Records limited
OMA, OMA Records.
Which I love, Oma. Good.
Yeah, I mean everybody calls it Oma and that is my nickname from from my grandchildren. I am an Oma, which is German for Granny.
Thank you. Yes, for our listeners out there, German, OMA, Oma.
And I and it's kind of a play on that, but it's OMA because our our and I don't Oh yes, I do.
This is our our, logo.
So it's a little attitude wave. It's an amplitude wave with kind of like an attitudinal quirk of the eyebrow nested inside. And so she's either our mother of amplitude or she's our mother of attitude. It depends on what kind of day I'm having.
Yeah, so I'm really excited. The kids put out their first album in in August and I have been managing the song portfolio for.
Right around 35 days and they are doing extremely well. They have upwards of 3000 monthly listeners at this point, which is unheard of for a local band as small as they are, right? They've only been together for a year.
And they have 886 followers, which is also phenomenal for a band their size. They've made connections all over the country and that's all them. But but my my goal is to grow this in a way that the artists have a voice always. So there's always one representative from each band on the board at any time, and there's always one representative from the.
And in the A&R board at one time so that, you know, they have a, they have a say in who's brought in and they have a say in what we're doing to support our artists. But you know, right now that's just ASMR so.
Got it. Yeah. Hey, you started two months ago and you guys are doing great. Didn't I read that one of the songs had over 1,000,000 downloads already?
Not a million.
No. What was it? I saw a really big number. It had a lot of zeros.
Yeah, it's, it's really close. One of the songs has really close to 10,000.
On its own.
For a brand new band and a brand new album, that's crazy, yeah.
Yeah. And and it's really exciting that's.
Again, that's a really, that's a big jump for for the the kids and their and their fan base. They worked really hard to build good relationship and good community. I mean it goes back to that community again, right? Is building that community that family of choice that that the punk rock community is here in here in Columbus anyway, they take care of each other. They they you know stand up for each other.
They help each other get better. There's none of this. Ohh. I don't like them because they're they're better than us. There's none of that. There's it's it's always building things up and helping people up. Even the mosh pits are nice. I mean, like even the mosh pits.
You know, little little off topic, but we'll give a plug to the Columbus music scene. We are tight. We are like I went to a gig two weeks ago. And there were people that I knew that I didn't even know I knew, right. And I showed up and he's like, oh, my mom is. So I'm like, I I've known your mom for 30 years, right. And nice and kind and supportive, and you just want to get to know more about them. So little plug before we hang up here. Thank you. Thank you.
Thank you for sharing the story from last year and how tough things really were and the techniques that you've been using to get ahead and also the community that you're building to help support you and recognize what overwhelm looks like in you and call you out on it, right. So thank you so much for being on here today. I really appreciate hearing and learning and so excited to see so much more that you will be bringing out to the world.
Thank you so much. Thanks for all your help and thanks for inviting me.
Oh yeah, my pleasure.
Just concluded an episode of Overcome to become a leadership podcast focusing on leading yourself first. Thanks for listening. I'm Angela Buckley with creatively efficient author of the strength and Nature Leadership series. To learn more about mindsets and leadership, follow me on Instagram at creatively efficient.
Powered by TranscribeKit