Episode: 384 |
Sally Dominguez:
Resilience and Growth:


Sally Dominguez

Resilience and Growth

Show Notes


Sally Dominguez is a former architect, award-winning inventor, and author. She is a sustainable resilience expert and 10XInnovation Strategist. Today, she discusses her book, EPIC Resilience, and explains the strategies in the book for developing a personal resilience and growth mindset to not only survive but to thrive in times of constant change.

Key points include:

  • 01:23: The Singularity University
  • 05:06: How to be resilient emotionally
  • 07:56: Identifying values and purpose
  • 11:15: The power of authenticity
  • 20:10: The impact of sleep and sugar
  • 24:16: Intellectual and creative growth


You can order Sally’s book, EPIC Resilience: Thriving through Chaos and Change, on Amazon, view the slim tank invention for water conservation, and visit her website at: http://www.sallydominguez.com.



One weekly email with bonus materials and summaries of each new episode:

Will Bachman 00:01
Hello, and welcome to Unleashed the show that explores how to thrive as an independent professional. I’m your host Will Bachman and I’m here today with Sally Dominguez who is the author of Epic Resilience? Sally, welcome to the show.

Sally Dominguez 00:18
Thanks for having me, we’ll always good to have a chat.

Will Bachman 00:20
So epic resilience, which we need more than ever in, in today’s world. Talk to me just give for first give us a little bit of a one minute sketch here on your background. And, you know, tell us where you’re coming from.

Sally Dominguez 00:36
Hmm, it’s an interesting one, because the old elevator pitch is difficult when you’ve done as many kind of wide ranging things as me but it’s culminated in I’m generally a futurist. I’ve won a lot of awards for design, I’ve invented quite a few things. I’ve judged invention on TV, I judge card a car of the year. But generally these days, I teach an adventurous thinking strategy, which is like a proactive design thinking strategy. Teach at Stanford, I implemented at IKEA and Sony and various companies around the world. And I’m on faculty at Singularity University, as a futurist and a specialist in exponential mindset. In a nutshell,

Will Bachman 01:17
And for folks that are not familiar with Singularity University, tell us a little bit about that.

Sally Dominguez 01:23
Singularity is such an interesting place. And you know, until a couple of years ago, I was not familiar with it. And I’m always interested in how many, you know, power companies and C suite people talk about their interaction with singularity. And in a rave about singularity. what it’s done is it’s essentially it’s an organization based in Silicon Valley, but really global. And it’s assembled bleeding edge research and practitioners in exponential technologies. So it’s all about exponential growth, exponential technologies, and of course, the name singularity. Is this, this ultimate conclusion that a lot of futurists believe will happen, you know, lifetimes perhaps, which is the coming together of human and machine. And so it singularity really focuses on teknicks technologies, you know, digital biology, robotics, deep learning, all sorts of things like that. My focus for Singularity is on how do we level humans up, level up the human creative competence and potential to face off against the kind of rational prediction and analysis that comes from artificial intelligence.

Will Bachman 02:36
So let’s talk about epic resilience. So epic epi see got four quadrants. Talk to me about talking to me about the framework and let’s dive in.

Sally Dominguez 02:46
Yeah, so. So ethics stands for emotional, physical, intellectual and creative resilience. And it’s an interesting one, because, you know, I teach this kind of bearable discomfort thinking moonshot thinking, using imagination and possibility. And what I find is when I teach what I teach, is that people love it. It’s exhilarating, but it’s physically and mentally exhausting. So before COVID, I’d already been thinking about how do I situate people to be at their best so that they can continue to think this way on the daily without burning out. But what was interesting will was COVID came upon us. And I quickly realized that people were divided into two groups, there were the people that seize this opportunity this low or this moment, to look at what they hadn’t done to focus on themselves to maybe get really fit or discover new things. But another 50% of the people kind of put on their pajamas, had a drink, and sat back waiting for someone else to bring it back to normal. And you know, because ideal in this whole exponential change thing. I’m like, there is no normal to go back to this is now the digitization that was forced by COVID means every vertical is now disrupted. And as I looked around and realized how many people I knew and loved with feeling powerless and fearful, I realized that I should use my mollen time to write this book, and to help people understand that resilience. Now, in this era of constant change, resilience is about not just surviving an event, because the event is a continuous change now, but thriving in chaos. And and to survive, you need this mental and physical strength, but to thrive, you need to reignite curiosity, and you need to understand the value of connection and idea sharing. And that’s the intellectual creative resilience. So I whipped this book out pretty quickly, because I’d been thinking about it for so long. And I realize that, as you said in the intro, now more than ever, people need resilience.

Will Bachman 04:55
So let’s walk through some of your tips and let’s walk through the quadrants. Let’s start with emotional, what are some tips that you share around how to be resilient emotionally?

Sally Dominguez 05:06
Yeah, I. The other interesting thing about this, the strategy, the epic, is that it starts with individual, but the intent is that it scales to organizational, and schooling and institutional. So each of these quadrants starts with us, but can expand. So emotional is about values, having purpose, being very clear about your boundaries that are based on your values and making them clear to other people. So, so being mentally stable as you can, in fact, I use this, I have depression, and I came out of a situation with depression, using these boundaries, this value this purpose, to get more stable and kind of develop myself out of this period of like, unhealthiness. It’s just part of part of what I have. But it’s a really interesting one in organizational level. Again, this idea of purpose, uniting people, and of having really clear, transparent boundaries, is super important. So starts with this idea of what are your values? What’s your purpose? How do we protect that we’ve significant communicate about boundaries, and then moving into physical, that’s about strength. So from an individual point of view, it’s understanding the strength you have and exploring that very direct body mind connection. So So particularly, you know, I talked about in the book, I began to box and I’m a pretty, I’ve always been a strong physically strong person, I’m pretty, pretty built, you know, however, when I hit the heavy bag, I feel this power, that I think is everybody felt the power that they have within them, when they hit the heavy bag, they immediately feel more confident, mentally, so, so physical is about, you know, getting enough sleep, looking at nutrition, understanding your sugar intake, taking charge of as many parts of it, it’s about essentially being self aware, right, taking control of your physicality and your strength and enhancing it. So that the emotional and the physical come together to be that survival.

Will Bachman 07:13
Okay, so let me just jump in here. So on the emotional piece, so I understand kind of the high level where we should be headed, do you know your point around identifying your values and your purpose? What are some? So some, let’s say some listeners saying, well, that that’s great. Okay. But practically, how do I, how do I get there? So what are some tips that you have, that are very actionable to, you know, start on that journey towards, you know, getting clarity on your values, getting clarity on your purpose?

Sally Dominguez 07:49
That’s a great question,

Will Bachman 07:49
Is it like a daily journaling thing? or meditation or mindfulness? Or what what are some of your suggestions around that?

Sally Dominguez 07:56
Yeah, I would start really with values, you know, and I do a lot of coaching in vision based strategy. And it all comes back to this. What are your values, like, as an example, for me? Truth is really important to me, if I find that someone is consistently lying to me about things, it’s just something I can’t tolerate. And I’d not really stopped, paused and realized how important that was me. I mean, everybody listening might go, Well, yeah, true, it’s important. But if I was to list a set of values, like, if you you sit down to get in the book, I talk about seven. But so you start with three things, values that are really important, there might be trust, they might be a friend of mine said fiscal values are really important to her, which I was interested in. To me, it’s trust. So once you understand a value that you feel really strongly about, then think about push out from that and go, what Won’t I tolerate? That if this is my value? Where are my limits, you know, is that and so in my case, it’s you know, if people present with a history of not telling the truth and not acting in a truthful way towards me, I have to get them out of my life until I you know, make that really clear, I’ll, I’ll be I’ll be very clear about what that boundary is. So once you’ve worked out what this value is, and you understand your limits, you want to write down what those boundaries are. And you want to communicate them, to family, to friends to work colleagues, so that no one can miss understand where you’re coming from, you know, so you want to be really clear, I will not tolerate a pattern of lying. And if you lie to me continuously, I cannot have anything to do with you until that pattern changes. Yeah. And this is so strengthening. I think kids should learn this at school, because it’s taken me until the age of 48. Yeah, I understand how liberating a boundary is, because once you have these values spelt out, all the superfluous stuff falls away. You’re really an end as an organization also, once you have a value statement and a purpose that you’re working towards, it’s really easy to see what is relevant and what isn’t? Personally, it’s really easy to see what’s relevant and what isn’t and who’s relevant. And who isn’t.

Will Bachman 10:08
I wonder if there’s an exercise around, you know, identifying your sort of aspirational values that you, you know, that you sort of would tell someone, if someone asks you, what are your values? Some, there’s some exercise around doing that. But then also, you know, if we think that our values are represented in our calendar, and the way we actually spend our time, some current state assessment of if someone actually looks at my calendar, what would they deduce what my values actually are in practice? So we might say, like, Oh, well, I really value being a great dad and spending time with my kids and I value being physically fit. But then if you actually looked at it and said, Okay, well, how much time have you spent with your kids over the last month? You know, did you read them at night? Oh, well, you know, did you watch movies, play games with them, or whatever? Or you’re 50k, you want to be physically fit? How many times if it worked out? Then there’s sort of a current state of actual expression of our values of the, you know, versus our aspirational values of what we’d like to get to? Yeah, so any reactions to that?

Sally Dominguez 11:15
Yeah, I think that’s really interesting. Because, you know, fundamental human motivation revolves around competency and authenticity, we all want to feel like we’re authentic. And we’re empowered by that. And so if you have a mismatch between your aspirational values and your reality, resilience is about you taking control, and making it bringing those two things together, in filling that gap. Because if you say, you know, look at my calendar and look at my reality, and yeah, I wanted to spend this time with the kids where I wanted to spend this time, let’s use the fitness one I wanted to get physically fit, you know, I just don’t have time. So, so you may think you don’t have time, but the people that I’ve coached through this, I’ve said to them, You know what, you don’t have to go somewhere and work out for an hour, literally get out of bed and run for five minutes in one direction, then turn around and run back. And so you have to do that every single day, we’re talking about 10 minutes, everybody has it. And if you prioritize, get out of bed, roll out, have all your stuff ready, run for five minutes, literally save a ton of people who work out all the time might laugh at that. But that five minutes and five minute we’re in back is going to make a massive difference not only to your physical health, but to your ability to structure and do your feeling of authenticity. So it’s not a matter of Yeah, drop everything, I’ve got a radically restructure. It’s literally taking tiny, five to 15 minute bites, and bringing those brand new rational values much closer to your actual daily life. It’s not rocket science, and it’s not difficult.

Will Bachman 12:55
Yeah, another thing that I’ve seen and found successful in my own life around the emotional piece is having some kind of journaling practice. You know, the morning, the morning pages that Julia Cameron helped popularize, and invented, which is totally unstructured stream of consciousness writing kind of first thing in the morning, kind of can help a person connect with what’s going on in their life and surprising things come out. Yeah. What other sorts of real practical tips would you suggest for someone who wants to explore beyond journaling beyond, you know, or the ones who explore the journal?

Sally Dominguez 13:38
You know, it’s interesting, I was at a talk with an expert in this idea of fulfillment, human fulfilled fulfillment. And he was talking about you know, everybody always says that the gratitude journal that write down three things you’re grateful for, is the is the top of the pyramid in terms of what you can do for yourself. This guy said, No, there’s one thing that’s higher than that, which is lucky because I will say, whilst I’m all for gratitude journal, Australians just don’t do that. As well as Americans do. We kind of scoff at it, which is a shame. And the longer I live here, the less I scoff but, but this guy said, more important than writing down what you’re grateful for, is connecting with other people, is reaching out to other people, and having human connection. And that’s actually a key part of this epic resilience strategy. The idea is, it’s put on your own oxygen masks first. So level yourself up, balance yourself before you reach out, but to then use the ripple effect to outreach to three people every day, ideally, and not with an intent not with a networking thing in mind, but literally connect with people and share an idea or just connect with people and check in and it is true that as I worked through, you know, I had to hypnotherapy and all this other stuff to get out of this situation or depression and after this massive event that happened to me, this idea of outreach is the most uplifting thing. And it reminds you again, of your authentic self. You know, and I think that paired with if we’re going to talk about emotional also, this idea of purpose hire for younger people, I think, easier once you hit 30 and beyond perhaps. And that is, you know, if I died tomorrow, what is the legacy I wish I’d left apart from? I’ve got great kids, or I’ve got a great life or whatever it is, what is the legacy? If you wanted to make if you wanted to leave with impact? What is it? And you know, for me, I realized that it was I want to inspire and activate creative competence and others because I want to spread optimism. Right? And so everything I do filters down from that does this. Does this end up fulfilling that purpose? No, I won’t do it. Yes, I’ll do it. Right. Does this podcast help? Yes, it does. Because it’ll get more people thinking. So. And I think, if you if you look at reaching out and forcing yourself to connect with people, combined with thinking about what you wish your legacy was your purpose, and then using that to guide you, all the superfluous stuff, caring what other people think worrying about things you can’t control falls away. Because you have this focus, you have this purpose, and it’s bigger than yourself. And I think this is something that post COVID people are talking about a lot. There’s a lot of experts talking about the importance of human connection, and the importance of having an aspiration that’s greater than just yourself, you know, what can you do to make things better for everybody? It sounds a bit weird, doesn’t it?

Will Bachman 16:41
No, not at all. I I really strongly agree with that. Sally, a friend of mine a couple weeks ago, sent me a link to a podcast on the Art of Manliness. And it was an interview back in December 2020, with an expert in loneliness and an expert on suicide. And, and it was about, you know, a very high prevalence of male suicide. And the friend sent it to me because a friend of his from college had committed suicide, and that episode really brought it home. And that got me thinking that to do more, just like reaching out to people that I know. And your point about emotional resilience is not just for yourself, but also sometimes reaching out to people that you know, you know, maybe from way back can help them out. But it’s also really powerful, just that connection. And as a result of that, I said, Oh, yeah, I should do more that I reached out to a few friends of mine. And I just this past Sunday, I caught up with a friend of mine from my Navy days, who I’ve only spoken with a few times since I left the service in the 90s. And we had a great conversation. And it was just, you know, so just the rest of the day, I just felt so great after, you know, catching up with my friend.

Sally Dominguez 17:58
That’s it. It’s It’s so simple. And it’s fundamental. I mean, we release certain chemicals, when we’re in physical contact with people, we release other chemicals in our brain, when we’re connecting with other people. You know, it’s it’s something that has been undervalued. And I do believe that there’s unique period in history where people have been locked down and denied physical contact, and a lot of people were so scared that they they retracted from even reaching out remotely, you were realizing how important it is. And you look at you know, in the Bay Area alone, teenage suicide rate has increased by around 40%, which is incredibly scary. Teenage eating disorders are up 35% UCSF reports, you know, because these poor kids feel out of control, they no longer have the connection they had. I mean, you could argue that they’re still on social media. But that’s a different way of connecting, you know, and I think that that think what will come of this is a huge amount of research will go into how how we reignite that kind of connection, not just for gain, not just for networking, but it is actually helping each other. It’s a bit like that mentor, a mentor relationship where all the mentors always say, I’ve always said this, too. I learn as much as they learn from me. Yeah, in just reaching out, you had your chat with your old mate, they haven’t spoken to you for ages. It’s it’s idea sharing, it’s experience sharing and it’s invigorating.

Will Bachman 19:27
So message, some message on this segment is think of a friend from high school from college you haven’t talked to in a while and just reach out, they may really need that call from you, and you’ll enjoy it. Let’s go on to physical. Let’s talk about that a little bit more. So how, you know, I mean, some of the things are obvious, like get more sleep, drink more water, like you know, do some push ups go out for a walk. What are some of your tips in the book on like, really how to implement these things and make them happen beyond just like well obviously I should floss, And I should, you know, I should stretch and I should, you know, eat less sugar and I should, you know, eat more vegetables. How do people actually implement this

Sally Dominguez 20:10
This one is pretty interesting, I would challenge you know, if people just literally for two days, count the amount of added sugar you’re eating. Because, you know I’ve got at the back of the book some of the studies that that relate brain activity and brain function to over sugaring a lack of brain function to sugaring. And then I just watched a fantastic documentary yesterday was the thing called It was so good, fast leveling up, I don’t know what it was, I don’t have it in front of me. But was talking about how lack of sleep there was a there was a Surgeon General of the Army, talking about how she had researched that a lack of sleep over two days was the equivalent to fighting while drunk. And she implemented this program in around 2015, that very specifically targeted troops on the front line, and ensure that they got more sleep and the rate of accidents dropped dramatically. So even though we’ve heard it before you need sleep, I’ve heard it before, don’t eat sugar. Actually, these two elements have a huge action on your brain function. And, you know, I think we just take for granted that everything has sugar in it. But you know, when I started counting how much sugar I was eating from added sugar, I was horrified. And I’m a pretty low sugar person. And so if people just start with two days, just every time you eat something, check out how much added sugar there is added up. And remember that the World Health Organization would suggest you have no more than 30 grams, have a look at what you’re having, you’re probably closer to 70, which means your brain is not operating at peak function. You know, I fix it. But the other thing about the strength is for me, it’s about and again, I’ll say women, but it can also be men that aren’t your classic jock. And it’s about understanding your strength. So cardio, fitness, all of that stuff, that’s great, do it. But what I want people to do is, is feel how strong they actually are, what their body is capable of by lifting something super heavy, but in the right way by doing deep squats on those huge leg muscles. And once you start realizing that, you know you may be doing just Pilates, you may be doing just yoga, and that’s fantastic for your body. But this idea of understanding your potential strength is really important, because that goes to your mind strength. So even though it’s all fitness, I’m suggesting, like do some really deep squats or do something that actually activates muscles and reminds you or punch something really hard. I mean, the women that come and hit my heavy bag with me always start punching like kittens. And I’m like, you actually need to put some meaning into that. And as soon as I do that, like Yeah, and it’s not about aggression. This is about literally understanding the power your body has. And what that can manifest is.

Will Bachman 22:57
And for someone who doesn’t have access to a gym, what what’s your thoughts about what we can do at home, do some push ups

Sally Dominguez 23:05
It was one of my examples was you know, squat really low, straighten up your back and pick up a chair, like lift a squat down, holding a chair a squat down, holding a couple of cans, doesn’t really matter. Just pick something up, do a deep squat and understand what you’re capable of. And if you’re impaired, like if you don’t have functional legs saved and functional arms, there are still ways to use what limbs you can control, to feel your own strength, whether it’s clenching, whether it’s lifting, find something around the house, settle yourself in and empower yourself like just understand like, look at something you think he couldn’t lift, you usually can lift that thing. And it’s just that idea of reminding ourselves we woke up very comfortable. Were comfy on the couch, were comfy, sitting back and you know, slumping over that actually, our bodies are busting to be optimized and deliver to us this incredible strength that we have these abilities that we have that kind of we’ve softened

Will Bachman 24:09
The next quadrant, after he emotional and physical, I think his intellectual,

Sally Dominguez 24:16
Emotional and physical and making you a stable giving you a stable base, right? But the intellectual and creative are about growth, growth mindset. So this idea that with tools and with effort, you can develop both your curiosity, your intellectual abilities, and your creative thinking and your ideas sharing. And these are the ones that are as much about outreach as they are about personal development. These are the ones that are about flourishing and thriving in changing chaos, and being able to spot opportunity where other people see chaos and fear. You know, so, so intellectual resilience is about understanding that we use our expert Brian every day. Right. That’s where our neural pathways tend to be wired towards what we know we do it over and over again, that’s how we got our job. That’s how we made it through school. Right? That’s rational knowledge. That’s only one of many intelligences. And so where I start on intellectual resilience is read some cutting edge piece of research every day, I subscribe to a newsletter called science x. But I also read a ton of research and development, MIT and Harvard labs, and you basically read something that is pointy edge, brand new technology that you don’t understand, for two to three minutes. And then think about what you do every day, and force your brain to make a connection, which won’t be easy, because there won’t be one. But what you’re doing is forcing your brain to think outside what it knows. and scrape around in the area of possibility and imagination.

Will Bachman 25:53
Okay, give me an example. Give me an example.

Sally Dominguez 25:55
Okay, so say. So say you’re you’re in the business say, of bringing, bringing consultants together talking about private consulting practice, say, and I say to you, hey, here is this two minute video, I’ve actually developed a whole lot of little videos around this, here’s a two minute video on it, this tiny robot that prints itself and then folds itself up, and then walks off the table. And a whole lot of these things can go out and do these kind of mass robot tasks, even though each one’s super simple, completely autonomous, off they go. They programmed, the circuits printed, it folds up and it walks away. So I tell you about that, right, I let you watch the video, you look at it and go, that’s crazy, of course. And then I say, Alright, so think about what you do every day. And I want you to bring that robot into what you do every day. How could that process? or How could that thing, be a part of what you do every day? I mean, you tell me, how could it?

Will Bachman 26:52
Well, it gets me thinking about me, it gets me thinking about robotic process automation, about you know, the idea of robots and and consulting practice. Maybe not necessarily a physical robot, but, you know, robotic process automation, which to automate certain tasks, you know, creation of PowerPoint pages, creation of invoices, creation of you know, other back office processes, paying bills, remote reminders to reach out to clients reminders, you know, things if there’s things that could be standardized and routinized. Like if you’re preparing for a kickoff meeting, or if you’re preparing a proposal, how could you use robots in terms of online robots to do some of those tasks for you? So

Sally Dominguez 27:44
Oh, well, could you send this little guy out to people as a potential as a as a virtual calling card, and when they put it on the printer, when they print out what you sent them, it pulls up and walks over to them.

Will Bachman 27:56
That would be pretty cool. And then maybe a good dry rod two by two matrix for them. And there it is.

Sally Dominguez 28:03
So the thing is, what you find is, when I give you that bit of information that’s outside your scope of expertise, you start asking yourself questions. And we don’t tend to ask ourselves questions as much as we should. So our curiosity is kind of damped, but it’s always their human brain has it. And by forcing yourself to look at a piece of information that has no relevance to what you’re doing, and then understand, you don’t have to understand that even then forcing yourself to develop an unexpected connection back to your expertise, and unexpected connections are the base of all innovation is this incredible, unique human ability to make unexpected connections from possibility to reality?

Will Bachman 28:45
And then and do encourage people to keep some kind of log of these, you know, connections, like what was the article says,

Sally Dominguez 28:54
so you could if you wanted to, but for me, it’s not about the end game. It’s about the process and developing the habit of questioning and questioning and questioning and seeking out unrelated knowledge, because that will then start provoking your curiosity back into an active part of your everyday. And once you’ve got curiosity is an active part of your every day, you’re going to come up with more out of the box solutions, more thinking, you’re going to feel more alive. You know, it’s funny, I just, I finished a long coaching session with 30 of Sony corporations, future leaders, so from all over the world, they picked 30 people I coached them for three months on vision thinking, and this kind of moonshot stuff. And at the end of it, this engineer who was like 42, I think, incredibly, technically gifted at whatever he did, picked as a future leader, but very conservative, and he said in the debrief, Hey, guys, I have fundamentally changed the way I think every day, because of this moonshot thinking he said, I never thought it was possible to be anything but the person I was born to be, which was You know, I was born with this very analytical brain, I’m really good at looking at engineering and solving problems. But he said, You know, my workmates and my family, both have commented on the change. And he said, I feel 20 years younger. And I couldn’t believe it, I was so happy. Because what what he’s telling me is, his brain feels so alive, he feels so invigorated. And it’s simply because we developed over these three months, the habit of every single day, thinking in the realm of possibility thinking, and developing this intellectual and creative resilience. In addition to him being an expert every day, it makes a massive difference to your confidence, and your resilience, your ability to just thrive in any situation, by peeking this curiosity that we all have, but it’s kind of buried.

Will Bachman 30:47
Okay, so. So one kind of take home practical idea here is, is read some scientific article or something that’s very outside your normal day to day. And think about how you might apply that to your own practice your own business

Sally Dominguez 31:05
Have it come to your inbox just lands in the morning, like my science x newsletter, I open it, I read the first thing I say, I go, Whoa, whoa, I don’t even understand this carbon capture thing. And then I read it. And then I think about it for another five. And like, ask myself the questions that need to be asked, you know,

Will Bachman 31:21
no, I build on that. Like, I think another experiment to consider, which I’ve been kind of doing myself, is I stopped. I’ve been taking a news diet since mid January. And you know, Tim Ferriss talks about this in the four hour workweek. And yeah, it’s a common idea to just really shut down all reading of just sort of news sources, right. And for me, I cut out Twitter as well, because I was spending like, way too much time just doing scrolling on Twitter. And you might say, oh, my goodness, how are you going to find out about what’s going on in the world? Well, I think it gets much more interesting. If you say, Well, I’m not going to read the New York Times, or the washington post to the economist. And, but I still want to find out what’s going on in the world, you get a little bit more perhaps creative about how you go about it. Maybe I’ll read just Wikipedia articles, or, yeah, which by the way, often, I find, you know, just much more, giving much more context than reading the latest article about some conflict, where you just get this very thin slice, or let’s say, you know, reading academic articles, or reading takes from sort of blogs or some substack.

Sally Dominguez 32:42
Writer, sometimes I read passwords. You know, it doesn’t really matter what you read, because what you what you’re looking for is what’s brand new, what are people doing? What are people discovering? Yeah, you know, and that’s, that’s making you think, like a pioneer. Like, you know, Deepak Chopra says, every time you go to do the same thing, ask yourself, do you want to be a pioneer in the future? Yeah. And instead want to be safe? Do you want to pioneer the good stuff?

Will Bachman 33:10
Yeah. And instead of delegating to the editor of the New York Times, or the Washington Post, what is important in the world of making a decision yourself, and maybe you go to the Department of Health and Human Services and read like the latest government report on something or going to a think tank that you respect, or maybe that you don’t respect and trying to get a contrary point of view, but just exposing yourself to like, just very different sources of information to get out of the ordinary.

Sally Dominguez 33:42
So I love that because we’re so curated. I mean, everything on Google, or whatever search engine we’re doing is based on what we’ve looked for before, what our region is, what our language is, what our preferences are, it’s so curated that, you know, as a journalist, I tend to go to Page Six and beyond when I’m googling something, because I’m like, I’m not looking at the stuff that’s paid to be in front of me. I refuse. You know, but we have to be self aware enough to know that it’s happening. Yeah. And let’s talk about the the last quarter in the sea. So favorite thing? Yeah, yes. So you know, it’s so funny. So often people think of creativity in terms of artistry, instead of realizing that creative thinking is possibility thinking it’s massive imagination. And yeah, perhaps you’re an artist. And perhaps that’s your way of expressing creative thinking. But it’s nothing to do with the craft of, of painting or sculpting nothing. It’s about using your mind or using your imagination, to solve issues or consider issues. And so, you know, for me that the big takeaway for creative resilience to give yourself confidence and to spread this kind of optimism to others, his idea sharing, I mean, were in a country, the USA is not, it’s very much about protect your ideas, patent it, wrap it up in Lego Everything I’ve invented, I haven’t, I’ve done it one or two patents, but I generally let them go. Because I thought, you know, I’m capable of embedding so much more stuff. And, yeah, I’ll protect it to the extent that I can license it. But I don’t want to protect it to the extent that no one can pick up these innovations and run with them. Because, you know, every time I invented something, tend to be something that was useful. So I think, this idea of don’t hang on to one idea and think it’s so important, understand that if you share ideas with people, you discuss ideas with people, you will be prolific in generating new ideas. It’s, it’s this beautiful thing where Maya Angelou says you cannot use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have, you know, so it’s not an expendable resource. It’s actually one that is ignited by sharing and discussing and exploring. And I think that’s what’s so exciting, because also when your ideas share is completely inclusive. If we’re idea sharing, we’re way outside knowledge and knowledge in its many guises is something that can create exclusion, you know, expertise. And if you fall outside, that you’re not counted, or, you know, schooling or whatever, but imagination, every human has it. And everybody’s ideas are valid. And I think a really important part of creative confidence and resilience is that everybody is included, when new ideas share. And I love that.

Will Bachman 36:26
I got to ask about share with us one one of your patents that you’ve that you’ve earned.

Sally Dominguez 36:33
I so So way back, I was I’m an architect, I was in a lot of sustainable building in Australia, we had massive drought, huge water restrictions very relevant for for California right now. I designed at a water tank called the rainwater hog. It was to be like a Lego block, you filled up with water. It was modular, it was very slim. So it was going to be a tall rectangle. When I went to the factory, we’re at a molding factory, and I said, Hey, I want to make this toe rectangle. They started laughing. And they said, You don’t know anything about holding water. The head of water means the bottom of bowls that will never work. And I said, Yeah, well, what I’m thinking is, if I put kind of doughnut holes, I think of a donor. And I said, if I put holes from side to side, on this tank, then the walls of those holes are like inside out bracing, and they got to hold the walls together. And they went not you don’t know what you’re talking about? Well, I did it. And there’s now a whole genre of slimline rainwater tank called slim, which uses these through holes as the only way they can exist as the bracing and the I actually invented that structure.

Will Bachman 37:36
This. Yeah, it’s fantastic. I’m so glad I asked about that. That’s really cool. I will have to include a link link to some images of those in the show notes. Yeah. So Sally, we will include a link to Epic resilience here in the show notes. Where else should people go if they want to find out more about your varied practice?

Sally Dominguez 38:00
You know, my website, Sally dominguez.com kinda has links to everything on it. My adventure thinking strategy, I’m running at Stanford this semester, but I do from time to time right there. LinkedIn is good, because I put everything up there. But really, you know, I’m excited for people to this is a short book. It’s very deliberately, very to the point. I’ve put all my favorite quotes in it, because I think another part of keeping ourselves on the right path is to surround ourselves with thoughts from people who really say it so much better than I can. So I’ve got a whole section of like inspirational quote, things that go in with what I’m talking about. I think my website and and hopefully, there’s a lot of information in the book that will help not only people, but also organizations get more innovative, get more resilient, and be more inclusive. And it’s rolling out his Education Strategy this this year, which I’m excited about.

Will Bachman 38:54
Oh, that’s amazing. Yeah. So, Sally, thank you so much for joining. We’ll include those links in the show notes and listeners do check out epic resilience, drop in a review on Amazon, or your favorite bookseller. And let me know if you have questions for me that you’d like me to answer on a future episode. And as reminder, if you go to umbrex.com and click on the Unleashed tab, you can sign up for the weekly email that I sent out with a quick summary of each episode and some bonus material. So thank you for listening.

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