with Nina Simons
If you’re looking to reinvent your definition of leadership into a more integrated and full spectrum lens to make the changes you want to see in the world visible, and to liberate who you were born to be, you're in the right place.
This is a very special episode.
Today I’m so honored to be talking with Nina Simons, an award winning writer, and social entrepreneur, who’s been paving the way for feminine leadership.
She is the co-founder and Chief Relationship Strategist at Bioneers, and leads its Everywoman’s Leadership program. Bioneers is a nonprofit that uses media, convening, and connecting to lift up visionary and practical solutions for many of our most pressing social and ecological challenges, using a whole-system approach.
Nina is a social entrepreneur who is passionate about reinventing leadership, restoring the feminine, and co-creating a healthy, peaceful, and equitable world for all.
We are also discussing her book, Nature, Culture, and the Sacred: A Woman Listens for Leadership. Her book offers inspiration for anyone who aspires to grow into or inhabit their own unique form of leadership with resilience and joy.
The book draws on Simons’ own personal learning and extensive experience with women’s leadership development…to reconnect and defend people, nature and the land, both practically and spiritually.
Listen in to discover:
How to move from competition to community,
How to avoid burnout in leadership roles,
What it means to cultivate your life as a practice,
Balancing yin and yang energies,
The power of women's circles and how to cultivate community,
Takeaways from her most recent Bioneers conference (a "Star Search" type event for amazing innovative solutions to reinvent education, gender equity, leadership, climate justice and economics)
What is full spectrum leadership,
Creating spaciousness when life feels nonstop,
The power of embodied rituals, and much more.
Listen below, or tune in via: Apple Podcasts,Stitcher or Spotify.
Complete transcript below.
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Nina Simons, co-founder of Bioneers and award-winning author of Nature, Culture & the Sacred: A Woman Listens for Leadership.
In 2017, Nina Simons received the Goi Peace Award with her husband and partner Kenny Ausubel for “pioneering work to promote nature-inspired innovations for restoring the Earth and our human community.” Past honorees include Bill Gates, James Lovelock, and Deepak Chopra.
In her book Nature, Culture & the Sacred, Nina Simons offers practical guidance and inspiration for anyone who aspires to grow into their own unique form of leadership on behalf of positive change.
Weaving her own insights together with reflections from cutting-edge leaders such as Terry Tempest Williams, Jeannette Armstrong, Alixa Garcia and V (formerly Eve Ensler), Nina opens thought-provoking pathways for reflection and growth. Discussion guides for each chapter offer prompts for engaging with radical anti-racism and intersectionality. In this essential handbook for navigating these perilous times with clarity and joy, Nina invites us to remember and reclaim our sacred relationship to the Earth by rebalancing our selves and our societies.
Informed by her extensive experience with multicultural women’s leadership development, Simons replaces the old patriarchal leadership paradigm with a more feminine-inflected style that illustrates then interconnected nature of the issues we face today. Sharing moving stories of women around the world joining together to reconnect people, nature and the land – both practically and spiritually – Nature, Culture & the Sacred is necessary reading for anyone who wants to learn from and be inspired by women who are leading the way towards transformational change by cultivating vibrant movements for social and environmental justice.
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EPISODE 261: Nina Simons
[Fun, Empowering Music]
Amanda Testa: Hello, and welcome to the Find Your Feminine Fire podcast. I am your host, Amanda Testa. I am a sex, love, and relationship coach, and in this podcast, my guests and I talk sex, love, and relationships, and everything that lights you up from the inside out. Welcome!
Hey, what’s up? It’s Amanda! If you're enjoying this pod, and you know you are ready to say yes to more pleasure, and you are just wanting to know, “How the hell do I do it,” well, you’re in luck because as of now, we have spots available in The Pleasure Foundation, which is my pleasure membership where twice a month you get an amazing practice that teaches you how to drop into your body, to become more connected to yourself, and to learn the art of sacred self-care. So, if this is something you're interested in, go to www.amandatesta.com/tpf (as in The Pleasure Foundation) and we will see you there!
Hello, and welcome to the Find Your Feminine Fire podcast! I am so thrilled today because I have the great honor of speaking with Nina Simons, and we’re gonna be talking about leadership and what it means to be a leader in this day and age, specifically leading in all of the different aspects of ourselves that it takes to be an integrated full-spectrum leader to make changes we want to see in the world visible as well as to liberate who we are born to be. If that’s something that you're interested in, you're in the right place today!
So, I am so honored to be talking with Nina Simons. She’s an award-winning writer, social entrepreneur. She’s been paving the way for feminine leaders for a long time. She is cofounder and chief relationship strategist at Bioneers and just has done so many amazing things. So, thank you so much for being here, Nina. I am so excited to be talking with you.
Nina Simons: My delight, Amanda. Thanks for inviting me!
Amanda Testa: I’d love for those who may not yet be familiar with you and your work in the world, I’d love if you would just maybe give a little glimpse into who you are and what makes you so inspired to do the work that you do.
Nina Simons: Well, sure. Let’s see. I am someone who grew up with atheist parents (or agnostic parents) and learned at a very early age that nature was what revitalized and balanced me and what gave me solace when I needed it. And as I grew older, I began to realize that I had this deep, deep love for nature or what I refer to as mother life, you know? I realized that if there is anything sacred in this world, for me it’s mother life.
And so, my adult career has led me in all kinds of ways. I was involved in starting a social entrepreneurship company called Seeds of Change where I was serving the biodiversity of all life, and I loved that.
Then one day my husband came to me with an idea to start a conference, and he had been in a hot tub with a friend, telling him about all these amazing innovators that he had learned about who were learning, from nature, how to heal nature. And he was talking to this friend about how extraordinary these people were but lamenting that no one had ever heard of them, and the friend said, “Why don't you have a conference?” My husband said, “I’ve never been to a conference. It sounds boring. Why would I do that?” The friend said, “Here’s a grant. Go have a conference.”
Kenny came to me because I had a background in theatre, because I had realized that part of what needs to change in our world is our inner landscape, our belief systems and our ideas and our sense of our biases, a lot of what we’ve learned without ever intending to from our culture.
So, he came to me and he said, “Will you help me make a conference?” I, too, had never been to a conference. And so, with beginner’s mind we created this very unusual annual event called Bioneers, and Bioneers is a wonderful co-creation. At this point, it’s been 34 years that we’ve been doing it, and it’s kind of like an environmental and social Star Search. So, we scan the horizon for who has amazing innovative solutions for how to reinvent education, how to reinvent gender equity and leadership and climate justice and economics and all the things because, in our view, everything in the human realm is actually a subset of the natural realm, and so, they're all related.
And so, in a nutshell, for 34 years we’ve had this incredible conference, which has now become a very big online source for learning and for entertainment, and there’s an incredible podcast and radio series that wins awards every year and a lot of books and tons of videos, and they're all available online for free (not the books), and somewhere along the way, somewhere in the mid-90s, late in my life I realized how much my gender was affecting my leadership. I also realized that I was given an award for being a leader (a young leader under 40 at the time), and I didn't like it at all. I felt like I hadn’t earned it, I felt like it painted a target on my back, and I just didn't like the name. I thought, “No, I’m not a leader.”
It took me a while to unpack that because I knew from Bioneers that this time we’re all living in calls us all to be leaders, and I thought, “Well, if we’re all called to be leaders and I don't want to be called a leader, what’s wrong with this picture?” And so, I developed a seven-day immersive training for women leaders, and we ran it for, I don't know, 12 years. About 500 women came through it, and it was by application, and I co-facilitated it with two amazing colleagues. It was women of all -- we selected the women not only for their leadership commitments in the world, but also because we selected them to optimize their diversity in every way, so they were diverse by age, by race, by background, by class, by areas of interest and focus, and each time we kind of went through a process that helped all of the women who came through and myself, progressively over the years, to shed layers of enculturated learning that told me I wasn't enough, that told me I had to keep myself small, that told me that I wasn't safe to speak my truth in public, and we explored why and where and how all those beliefs had come from.
Together we co-created a field where instead of being in competition, like our culture often teaches us to, we were in beloved community. For me, the highest praise from women who took that was that they said, “When I see women in the airport, I see them as potential allies instead of competitors.”
Since then I’ve written two books. One’s, really, a collection of essays about how women and a few men are reinventing leadership, and this most recent book. I’ve been doing a lot of women’s leadership work over the years, so sorry, that’s a little long-winded, but it’s a windy road. [Laughs]
Amanda Testa: I love it because I think it’s so rich and so full of all kinds of different experiences that lead you to be able to offer the wisdom that you can share and just how it’s shared wisdom, too. You co-create these things and these events and these books, and so, I think that’s important to know too. One of the books that you're mentioning is Nature, Culture, and The Sacred: A Woman Listens For Leadership, and it’s such a powerful book, and you interview so many amazing people in this book. But I’m wondering, too, because as we first started this conversation before we started recording, you were mentioning kind of feeling inspired fresh off the most recent conference, and some of the ahas that were coming up around connection and how that’s something we’re so craving right now. I’m wondering if you wouldn't mind speaking more to that, if that is okay.
Nina Simons: Oh, of course. Well, we did have an amazing conference. It was our first time being situated in the city of Berkeley, which was quite wonderful, and we had an Indigenous heart at the center of our organization since we began, and it’s grown over time, over time, over time. And so, we probably had, I'm guessing, maybe 1,200 people a day, and each day had an Indigenous keynote speaker, and there were representatives from 120 native nations there, which was extraordinary and such an honor. What I sensed very clearly was how isolated so many of us have felt.
For me, I really am a creature who believes in relational intelligence, and my sense is we are social creatures by design, and so, the last three years of this pandemic have been really rough. We had all ages at the conference because we had teenagers there as well as elders, and really for everyone there was this huge celebration of coming together for the first time in a very long time in a field that was very intentionally designed and co-created to invite everyone’s sense of belonging and safety and bravery in being there. It kind of felt like a love field, even though this is such a time of polarization and of weirdness in the human social sphere. So, it felt like we collectively made some very good medicine, and that was incredibly gratifying.
Amanda Testa: I think, like you are saying, the residual effects of all of the alone time and the disconnection and the forced distancing will still, obviously, have some repercussions for a while.
Nina Simons: Oh, yeah.
Amanda Testa: Right?
Nina Simons: Absolutely, and you know, I find for myself, Amanda, that one of the benefits of this time has been that I’ve been listening very closely, and I don't just mean with my ears. I listen in my meditations. I listen in my dream time. I’ve been listening for guidance of what is wanted from me now, and what I know is that slowing down is part of what was wanted. And I still feel like a high-speed vehicle that’s skidding to a slower speed, but I’m grateful because I know that I needed it, and I was on a path to burnout, and that was not good.
So, can’t do that!
Amanda Testa: Well, I know you talked about this in your book, and I think it’s worth just pointing out again that difference of kind of when we -- maybe a view of a leader is just going, going, going, burning yourself out.
Nina Simons: [Dog Barks] I’m sorry.
Amanda Testa: That’s okay!
Nina Simons: [Laughs] But I can't do much about it except mute. Hold on.
Amanda Testa: No worries. I have a dog too, and, thankfully, the UPS person didn't drive by because every time the UPS pulls up, he’s super stoked, and my dog goes crazy because the UPS delivery person always brings him a treat. So, no worries at all on my end. Plus, this is just life, and I think it’s interesting because what I was mentioning about is how, oftentimes, the things about leadership would be to feel very burned out, right? You just go, go so hard, and I love how when you talk about -- I’ve heard you speak before around how kind of listening to what is really needed from you so you don't burn yourself out, and so, basically, I think oftentimes as we step into leadership or feel called into those roles, maybe there’s a part of us that’s like, “Well, I don't think I can do that,” or, “I can't step up in this way because it would just lead me to burning out. It will be too much, especially when I’m dealing with so many things.”
So, I’m curious. I appreciate how you were mentioning that earlier. It’s going in and tuning into what is needed, but I’d love if you shared more about that.
Nina Simons: Well, it’s something that I perceive, Amanda, on several different levels because, as you know, I talk in my book about what I call full-spectrum leadership, and I think whether we’re conscious of it or not, we’ve all been kind of habituated to forms of leadership that lean very heavily on the masculine parts of our nature and less so on the feminine parts. When I say that, I don't mean friendly versus aggressive.
I mean I think of the masculine and feminine as more like the yang and the yin of the yin/yang symbol, and really, the masculine is the active part of us, and the feminine is the receptive part of us, and our wholeness involves finding some sort of balance between those two things.
What I realized early on in my inquiry about leadership -- and I think this applies very directly to women who are mothers as well, whether they're working moms -- I mean, every mom is a working mom, right? I mean, that’s the reality. And so, what I saw was that we’re all habituated to being in constant overdrive, to multitasking, to accomplishing so much on our to-do list, to not asking for help when we need it, and to not giving ourselves permission for rest.
And so, what I am noticing -- a friend taught me that the feminine in us thrives in spaciousness, and I know that spaciousness doesn't sound like something very accessible these days, especially if you're working or you're a mom or both. It just feels like this very accelerated, one-thing-after-another, non-stop hamster wheel, but what I’m learning is that if I can slow down enough, even to just take 5 or 15 minutes to sit still, close my eyes, breathe deeply, maybe even lie down and recognize that almost whatever age we are, I believe we all need more rest than we’re getting and more stillness and more quiet time to listen and receive in whatever ways we do, because I think we all receive differently.
So, for me, I’m cultivating a practice of recognizing when I’ve been in non-stop motion for a while and I just need to slow down and take a few, and it doesn't take a lot of time, but it makes a big difference, and it’s how I notice when I’m going too fast or when I’ve got too much on my plate.
Amanda Testa: I think that’s so key is even just it doesn't have to be a huge amount of time.
Nina Simons: Right.
Amanda Testa: Sometimes two minutes, if you really just give yourself that two minutes fully, can feel spacious.
Nina Simons: Yeah.
Amanda Testa: And especially if that’s all the time, yeah.
Nina Simons: That’s right.
Amanda Testa: Yeah, and so --
Nina Simons: And it’s funny because for so many years I considered multitasking to be this great gift that women have, and I still think it is, but I think, like any gift, it can be a curse. What I notice is sometimes I have to not multitask. I have to just give myself permission to do one thing with my full attention at a time, and I think probably everyone who’s a mother knows that and has learned it from their children, right? But for me, who is childless by choice, that’s a learning.
Amanda Testa: I think one of the things that is interesting, I love this question that you pose in the book because one of the great things about the book, Nature, Culture, and the Sacred, is there are lots of embodied experiences for you to do with yourself or with a group, and one of the questions that I think is a great one, because especially when there are people listening who feel like there are so many things going on and they’re just maybe in survival mode a little bit, when you're kind of looking at all the harms that are created by the systems that we live in, how do you kind of avoid that overwhelming guilt but hold our own accountability --
Nina Simons: Yeah.
Amanda Testa: -- to cultivate the capacity to stay present, to respond. And I love that inquiry.
Nina Simons: [Laughs] Well, thank you!
Amanda Testa: Yeah.
Nina Simons: And I think I’m really proud of the book because, for one thing, it offers, in very digestible nuggets, my learning over the course of about a 20-year inquiry, and the essays, some of them are prose poems, some of them are essays, but they're only 20-, or 25-minutes long, and then each of them has both practices that you can do with yourself or with a circle of friends and embodied practices.
And so, I was able to really integrate my learning from 20 years of convening women’s circles, and that just feels like a good offering to everyone in a female body right now. [Laughs]
Amanda Testa: I’m wondering, too, when you feel into that question for yourself right now, is it taking that time for stillness and for going in or what helps your capacity?
Nina Simons: Hmm, well, let’s see. Walks in nature, and when I walk in nature I tend to have a walking meditation where I like to imagine that I’m pouring love from the soles of my feet into the earth because she needs it right now, right? Sometimes asking for forgiveness. That keeps me going. The evidence of women finding their fire and standing up to injustices that are happening all over the world just thrills me. As well as women in this country, standing up for our rights and our bodily sovereignty and becoming good citizens and being willing to take the risk of going out to demonstrate on behalf of what we know is right and needed and just because it feels like a very pivotal moment in our evolution as a species.
And while there are a lot of demands at home, and I sure feel that, we’re at a choice point, really, in our evolution, and everyone who’s a mother knows the concern and the fear of sending your kids to school with rampant gun violence and the impending threat of climate instability and craziness.
So, I’m excited by the moment and also, I mean, there’s another piece that I want to name, Amanda, which is that I feel like 20 or so years ago I gave myself permission to cultivate myself as part of my life practice, and I felt like when I did my own inner inquiry and found all those biases and self-limiting voices and stuff that I had never chosen to take on -- and at first I was like, “Oh, how did I become this shrinking violet? That's not who I am. Over the course of doing all that work, I feel like I have found my way to a place of greater freedom and full self-expression. My husband and I have achieved a love affair that took a lot of work to get to, but now we’re in full equality, and it’s like we’re having a honeymoon after being together for nearly 40 years, which is amazing! I would wish that for everyone.
So, there is a joy in liberating myself from all that enculturated learning that didn't serve me, and it’s freeing and it’s joyful, and it’s also hugely empowering, and I sure wish it for everyone of any age.
Amanda Testa: Yeah, and I love how you say, too, it’s your life’s practice.
Nina Simons: Yeah, no, I probably will be practicing until the day I die.
Amanda Testa: Exactly.
Nina Simons: [Laughs]
Amanda Testa: I, too, get that. I think so many people are like, “Well, this just needs to be taken care of,” or, “I’m gonna learn this, and it’s the end.” I’m like that’s not how it works at all. It’s a constant practice that never ends, right? It’s just part of the evolution of who we are.
Nina Simons: Well, and you know, this may be my particular biased way of seeing the world, but I do believe that that silver-bullet, fast-solution way of thinking is part of patriarchal closure, you know? It’s about the goal orientation without attention to the process, and the process is at least as important, and you can't really know the goal until you fully step into the process, and then it reveals, if you're lucky, over time. [Laughs]
Amanda Testa: Well, I love how you also say that you and your husband now have this epic love affair after 40+ years that you’ve worked very hard on.
Nina Simons: Right?
Amanda Testa: I’m curious, would you be willing to share maybe some of the things that you feel have helped that?
Nina Simons: Well, I mean, we went through a difficult power struggle kind of a time where I thought that we might have to split up, but honestly, I think that what got us through it was me claiming my own authority. I really think that what I feel like I keep learning over and over again in my couple relationship is to change the relationship, change yourself, and when you change yourself, everything changes. I’ve just been blown away to witness how much he’s changed and how much he’s enjoying me being fully present in a way that I probably wasn't before. He keeps saying things like, “You’ve surpassed my imagining of who you were,” and I love that. That’s lovely. What a sweet affirmation.
What I recognized is that for a long time I compared myself with him, I gave my power to him. I just think that that program is so deep within us that the guys who are in charge, who are the men or the males in our lives, need a long time to get over it. But what a great thing to have gotten over! I’m just enjoying it so much, and it’s a delight.
Amanda Testa: You were talking about noticing and kind of where you felt -- well, because we all are taught, right, especially here in this culture in the US and around that patriarchal culture of, you know, and then at the power of what not, it’s just easy to default. So, I’m curious if you are open to maybe sharing what were some of the things that helped you to feel like you could take your authority back and to feel that you had more choice in taking your own power, because I think that’s what I love to talk about as well because I think that’s a big piece of it. We all so often feel like we don't have any choice or we can't make any change, but we can. There’s so much we can do, and it can feel overwhelming to look at all the things that need changing, but that’s what the powers that be want. They want it to feel too much to do the little things that need to be done.
So, I’m curious for you, maybe what were some of those little things to kind of unwind from feeling your power being taken away?
Nina Simons: Well, you know, it’s something that I describe at greater length in the book, but basically, I learned something from a Peruvian elder teacher who was in a traditional ceremony that was many hours long, and at the very end of it, he said, “If you remember only one thing, remember this: consciousness creates matter, language creates reality, ritual creates relationship.” And I felt as though those nine words landed in me like a compass, and from that point on, I practiced re-languaging things, you know? And I practiced ritual because I knew that what I had to change was my relationship to myself. And so, I did a lot of rituals.
Here’s an easy one. I noticed that when I got out of the shower in the morning, I looked in the mirror and I had all these voices go off in my head about, “Your butt’s too fat, and your hips are too wide, and your belly’s too round,” you know? Does that not sound familiar? [Laughs] And I knew, “Oh, my gosh, I’m doing violence to myself every day when I do that.” And so, I created a ritual by getting some body oil that I like and adding essential oils to it (to my own taste, you know, no particular recipe), and that every day when I got out of the shower, I would do this little five-minute ritual of anointing my body with this scented oil, and while I did it, I poured love and gratitude into my body and I thanked it for all the ways it was holding me and strengthening me and supporting me and all the things that I was grateful for about it.
And, you know, it sounds kind of oddly Hallmark-y, but I’ve got to say that what I found is that if you do rituals regularly every single day, somewhere around six to eight weeks, something inside you starts to change.
And so, that was one, and I did rituals of self-appreciation. I also found that working with other women tremendously accelerated my learning and my growth, and so often others can see ourselves better than we can see ourselves. And so, I would do practices (again, many of them in the book) about what are your gifts, what are your talents because I really believe that our souls brought us here to this life on earth with a purpose.
And so, a lot of the work that we did was to help identify what each woman’s purpose or sense of calling was so that we could grow into exactly who our souls brought us here to be. There’s something so powerful about having someone else give you feedback. I think any feedback -- we have to ditch the idea that feedback is positive or negative and recognize that if it’s given with love, if it’s given with an investment in you becoming more of yourself, then it’s not critique. It’s like, “I think you might show up better if you did this. I think it might help you to do that,” and it’s phenomenal how helpful it can be.
Amanda Testa: I think that’s so powerful, and I think, too, that’s one of the beautiful things about gathering in community because you get to have that reflection, and especially the more -- when you bring diverse groups together, then there’s just such opportunity for being able to see yourself clearly and unravel all the things that are standing in the way of your authentic self.
Nina Simons: It’s so true.
Amanda Testa: There are lots of layers that have to be unraveled.
Nina Simons: I know, and I remember long ago spending a weekend with a friend who had been in a women’s circle for, like, eight years, and I knew from being with her how much it had grown her. I came away from that weekend saying, “I’m gonna start a women’s circle!” I had no idea how. Again, I offer all the instruction that I knew in the book, but everyone may have their own way, and you can do it on Zoom. You can do it with one other woman, you know? There are so many ways to do it.
But another practice that we did that I love was something that we came to call Compost and Cauldron where we sat in a circle, and you can do it on Zoom, and everyone went around in their most truthful way and said, “I am composting this that I observed in myself,” you know, “I’m giving it back to the earth to transform into nutrients.” And it was a way of peeling back the onion skin of all that learning, and what I’m putting in the cauldron to cook is how good it felt to me when I did something better than I’ve ever done before, and everyone in the circle gets to hear that and savor it for themselves. When we show up with each other in that kind of fully-authentic, I’m-all-the-way-here kind of way, it tends to strengthen the muscle so that we can do it with our partners and our families and our PTA meetings and our work.
Amanda Testa: It’s so powerful, and I think one of the things that I’ve learned just in my own experience, like you say, it takes time, and that’s what I love about rituals and the things that you repeat again and again, that they're simple, even if it’s that spaciousness of two minutes. Creating the ritual of doing it again and again is so powerful on many levels because you do see the change when you keep doing it. You can see how little things make a difference to the whole, which makes it feel easier to make small steps and know that you might not be the one to see the end, but you're gonna keep building towards what you want, which I think is so important, right?
Nina Simons: Absolutely. Absolutely it is, and for anyone who’s at all scientifically inclined, it helps to know that you actually build new neural pathways when you do something repetitively day after day after day, and it strengthens us. I mean, I think on some level that having a commitment to myself has strengthened my connection to the sacred and also strengthened my sense of self-authority because, as much as there are many, many people in my life that I love, my greatest responsibility feels like it’s to myself and to life, to whatever I call sacred, which in my case is mother life.
Amanda Testa: And I’d love, too -- you know, I feel like there are so many things that I want to talk to you about, but I’m wondering just if there was one main message that you would want the listeners to really take home today, what would you love for that to be?
Nina Simons: Hmm, well, I think that we strengthen our capacity to become fully who we’re born to be by trusting ourselves, by investing in ourselves and each other, by connecting more deeply, more authentically with those around us, and that one of the things I have come to realize is that I have a different understanding now for why a patriarchal culture set us up to be in cat fights with each other.
Because women who are in authentic, committed, caring relationship with each other, I think, is the greatest untapped resource we have in the world today. We’ve inherited a world where the native people sometimes say, “The bird of humanity has flown with only one wing for far too long,” and the feminine is needed to be brought back into balance, not only in ourselves as female-identified people, but in the masculine and in our schools and our organizations and our cultures and our workplaces and our governments, because every study in the world today is showing that as women gain greater authority and greater autonomy and come more fully into leadership, including as parents, including as citizens, including as artists, all the ways we can lead, everything gets better around us.
The men get healthier. The children get healthier. There’s more food. The water gets cleaner. The air gets better. I mean, really, everything improves.
So, I think what I’ve come to realize is that my new definition of leadership is finding the place where our specific individual gifts and talents meet a need for reinvention in the world that’s something that we really love and feel devoted and in service to, and when you connect those three elements, I think we become unstoppable, and it’s so joyful! Why would we want to do anything else?
So, I think that was a long-winded way of offering a very loving message to every woman out there.
Amanda Testa: Oh, I love it, and it just hit deeply and resonated. Thank you so much.
Nina Simons: Oh, my pleasure.
Amanda Testa: And it’s just an honor to learn from you and to hear your wisdom, so thank you so much for being here. And I’d love if you would just share with the listeners where they can connect with you more and all those good things. I’ll also put this in the show notes, but just for those listening so they can know where to find more of you.
Nina Simons: Sure, well, for those listening, let’s see, there’s a URL, which if you go to @bioneers, you can sign up for Bioneers’ newsletter, which is fabulous, but also, you can access a free download of the introduction to my book, Nature, Culture, and the Sacred. That is at www.bioneers.org/ncsbook, and I also have my own website, which is www.ninasimons.com, and I’m also on LinkedIn and Twitter and all those things, but not often because I’m wild busy still, even though I’m trying to slow down, and there are lots of podcasts and videos online. I’d love to hear from you!
And also, if you do get the book, do me the great gift of doing a review on Amazon because it really helps get the word out, and it’s hard to get the word out on a book these days, even one as beautiful as mine. So, that’s what I would offer.
And Amanda, thank you for starting and keeping going this beautiful podcast. I really look forward to it and to learning more about your work.
Amanda Testa: Thank you so much. For all of those listening, I’ll also put where you can find her book and all those great links in the show notes, but I do encourage you to read it. It’s so good, and one of the things that you mentioned earlier, too, that really just struck is just the power of words and really be intentional about that. I think that is such a gift, even just listening to words. Our words are powerful, and thank you for sharing your wisdom here, and for all of you listening, thank you for being here.
Nina Simons: Thank you.
Amanda Testa: We will see you next time!
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[Fun, Empowering Music]EPISODE 261: Nina Simons