How to Break Cycles with Kobe Campbell

#real life reparenting voyv Apr 06, 2023


00:00:00    Alyssa

You're listening to Voices of Your Village. This is episode 226. I got to hang out with Kobe Campbell to dive into her first book. Why Am I Like This? How to Break Cycles, Heal from Trauma and Restore Your Faith. Y'all, this conversation, it was so fun to have and to dive into, really at the crux of doing this work, of raising emotionally intelligent humans is diving into our own work of who am I? What am I coming to the table with? What am I bringing from my childhood, and how do I build tools and awareness so that I can regulate and respond with intention? So many of us did not grow up with these tools for emotional intelligence, and we're trying to build a tiny human's toolbox alongside our own, and it's tough. Kobe and I dive into what this looks like in this episode. It is pure gold. Go snag her book right now. Why Am I Like This? How to Break Cycles, Heal from Trauma and Restore Your Faith. Before we dive into this episode, I want to let you know that we have our Seed Teacher Virtual Summit starting on Monday, April 10th. It is April 10, 11th and 12th. It is a free summit where you get to learn from experts in the field of Early Ed. There are 18 total workshops. They are straight fire. I had an absolute blast hanging out with these experts, and it's all coming to you for free. Head on over to to sign up now. All right, folks, let's dive in. 


00:01:48    Alyssa

Hey there. I'm Alyssa Blask Campbell. I'm a mom with a Master's degree in Early Childhood Education and co-creator of the Collaborative Emotion Processing method. I'm here to walk alongside you through the messy, vulnerable parts of being humans, raising other humans with deep thoughts and actionable tips. Let's dive in together.  


00:02:13    Alyssa

Hello, everyone, and welcome back to Voices of Your Village. Today I get to hang out with author hello, new author Kobe Campbell. She's a Charlotte based licensed trauma therapist, writer, and speaker with a kind, compassionate, and energetic spirit, she helps people heal from their past and live lives they love. She's the founder of the Healing Circle Therapy and Wellness Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, and hosts the Healing Circle podcast with her husband, Kyle. And they have two tiny humans at four and two, and she's got a new book coming out. Her first book. Why am I like this? How to break cycles, heal from trauma and restore your faith. Kobe. Hello. How are you? 


00:03:08    Kobe

I'm good. How are you? Thank you for having me. 


00:03:11    Alyssa

Yeah, I'm so excited because this is I mean, gosh, do we ever need this conversation? Like trauma and triggers, it's all around us, right? It's all around us, and it drives our day to day all the time in ways we're often unaware of. So thank you for writing this book, first of all. 


00:03:31    Kobe

Thank you. 


00:03:33    Alyssa

Yeah. And I want to first chat about trauma, right? I think it's a big word. It's one that's really buzzwordy. It shared a lot. What does it mean? 


00:03:47    Kobe

So the word trauma literally translates to wound. And I think that that is the best way that we can approach the conversation about trauma because so many people are looking for a big, lofty, super specific definition. But the truth is trauma is deeply personal, deeply contextual what wounds one person may not affect another and what doesn't affect another person may deeply wound another. And I think that we really get the permission to approach our wounds with a sense of care and kindness when we recognize that trauma is simply a wound from the past that affects our present. 


00:04:30    Alyssa

Oh, I think that's so helpful because I feel like that helps us not try to figure someone else's trauma out. Or I can find myself being like, oh, yeah, that happened to me. That didn't feel like a big deal for me. And almost dismissing somebody else's experience, even if externally I don't say it, inside sometimes I can find myself in that dismissive space, and I think that's so helpful to think about that their wound might not be my wound and that's okay. 


00:04:58    Kobe

Yeah, the wounds are different and everyone heals differently, right. So someone, two people might get a cold, say me and my husband, our kids with all their germs, may give us a cold. I may have it for a week and a half, and he may just have the sniffle for two days. 


00:05:13    Alyssa

But he's going to be on the couch for those two days. He definitely can't do anything. 


00:05:18    Kobe

He can't do anything. He can't get the remote, can't get a cup of water. Nothing. 


00:05:26    Alyssa

Okay. That is so helpful. I love that frame of reference as we go into this and everyone heals differently when we're looking at trauma, I think for me, what is the most glaring is how it shows up in parenthood in ways I, just when I'm like, oh, yeah, no, I've dealt with that thing. And then all of a sudden something happens in parenthood and here comes a trigger. And now I'm dysregulated. I didn't see that coming. 


00:05:56    Kobe

Yeah, you never do, right? 


00:06:01    Alyssa

And so let's dive into what does it look like to build awareness of our triggers and our dysregulation. 


00:06:09    Kobe

Yeah, I think that all awareness has to start with curiosity instead of judgment. Right. It has to be about us feeling the emotion, feeling the impulse that the emotion gives us. And obviously with time, slowly learning how to not act on the impulses. Right. Because when my kid screeches at the top of his lungs, my first impulse is to tell him to be quiet. Inside voices. Inside voices, please. Okay. Because I am feeling a distress internally that I'm immediately discharging. Now, that distress might be just because I'm sensitive to sound, which I am. But that distress is also a trigger that's tied to as a kid, I wasn't allowed to be loud like that. And so the kid in me is like, stop. This is the context of trouble. This is the context of rejection. And because I don't want you to know rejection, I don't want you to do this thing right. Our children are mirrors of the moments of the past we haven't processed yet. 


00:07:14    Alyssa

I need you to say that sentence about rejection again because I don't want you to know rejection. Sorry, say it again. I need it. I need it. I need to have a sign. I need it here in my office. I need it in my life. Give it to me. 


00:07:29    Kobe

I don't think I'll get it perfectly, but my kids screams and I'm like shushing them immediately. I'm telling them this is the context of rejection. This is the context of isolation. Because that was my lived experience. If you're allowed, you're rejected, you're sent to your room. If you're allowed, you're screamed at. If you're allowed, you're hit. If you're allowed, you will experience pain. And so there is like a dual response, one that is out of my own pain, but also one that's out of protection for them. Because I'm like, I don't want you to experience that rejection. I don't want you to experience that pain. So be quiet because it's causing me distress. Because I also feel I'm re experiencing it, and I don't want you to experience it for the first time. Yes. 


00:08:14    Alyssa

Okay. Yes. This is so huge in the world of triggers. What you're talking about right now? I was just having a conversation with one of my best friends the other day, and we were talking about how her child is in childcare in a preschool classroom and it doesn't want to go. And was saying the other kids are really into big body play and rough and tumble stuff, and that's not how her tiny human likes to play. And there isn't like a good matchup right now in the classroom for her and in terms of types of play. And she was like, oh my gosh, I just feel this part of me that wants her to feel included in all the things that doesn't want her to feel other that doesn't want her to feel excluded or like she doesn't belong. And I immediately was like, oh, when did that start happening for you? She was like, Gosh, but I think it's so real, right, that it's us in that projection of like, I can save them from experiencing this hard thing that I experienced and I don't want them to have. 


00:09:27    Kobe

Yeah. And if we don't process those moments for ourselves, we are actually going to inflict the same pain on our children that we've spent our entire lives trying to avoid. 


00:09:41    Alyssa



00:09:42    Kobe

We expose them to it early and tell ourselves that we're protecting them from it when they are completely different people. They are their own tiny little humans. And there may have been a world where they didn't experience exactly what you experienced, but now, because you were triggered and didn't process it, they did experience it. Right? My kid, for me, has exposed through triggering me, as people do, not just tiny humans, people do. He has exposed to me the silent rules that I live by that had no clue existed. 


00:10:20    Alyssa

What does that mean? 


00:10:21    Kobe

They were rules. Like, do not inconvenience people. Do not be too loud. Do not draw attention. Do not seem needy. Do not be whiny. Do not let people see that you're vulnerable. And all of those narratives, all of those stories were stories that I was living inside of, and there were stories that were from my own past trauma, and they were the silent rules. And kids come in and there are no rules. And so I couldn't understand why my kid couldn't get these are the rules. Well, he couldn't get that these are the rules because he didn't live through my trauma, right? And the truth was, the rules I was living by aren't actually rules. 


00:11:04    Alyssa

Sure. They were rules for safety and love and connection and value for you and your experience, right? And so when we're doing this, high maintenance was like, the last thing in the world. There's a part of me that would rather die than be high maintenance or have needs. And I grew up in a large family of four siblings, low income family, and having needs, being needy was not how you showed love. It wasn't how you received love, that's for sure. And. I find this now that a, allowing myself to have needs is hard, but my kid's so good at allowing himself to have needs. He's so good at saying I need help. He's so good at crying and saying, like, something's wrong, right? He's so good at that advocacy. As long as I don't shut it down, as long as I don't pop in and stop him from advocating for his needs and for himself and creating that same story pattern now so hard, though, I feel like I can get there sometimes for him, right, where he was just recently at the flu. And so him having needs, I'm like, yeah, totally. Growing up, I did not have a parent who would snuggle me or make sure I had snacks or whatever. They would just make sure you can be sick in your room. We'll bring you water, and that's it. Let me know if you need anything. But also, I'm going to send you a lot of signs. Don't let me know if you need anything and just get it yourself. So I was like, okay, I can do this for him. And I'm feeling like I'm on top of the world. And we were on vacation at the time with my parents, actually. And so all of a sudden, I started to see their responses to him having needs and being needy. And I was like, oh, I want them to love him, and if I want them to love him, he can't be needy. He was surfacing again, and I was like, oh, yikes. Can you walk us through the power of when we're doing this healing for ourselves rather than trying to avoid these hard things for our kids? What does it look like to provide them with maybe what we needed to hear or receive? 


00:13:29    Kobe

Yeah, I mean, that example is so powerful because it's a reminder that when we have childhood trauma in the specific context in which we experience those wounds, we bring that childhood mindset into adult situations and we forget to appropriately distribute responsibility. Right. Because as a child, we didn't feel like we had the ability to take hold of the situation. And there really was a context in which our parents were not going to change for our needs. Right, but now you're an adult, and now it's not your child's responsibility to change, to be loved by an adult. It's the adult's responsibility to acquiesce to the needs of the child, to meet them where they are. Right. And so I think a huge part of the trauma work is stepping back and saying this am I viewing this situation through my wounded child mind or am I viewing this as the present adult that I am? Right. And whichever one that is, you might still feel distressed. Either one is still going to bring a sense of distress. But I think it's important for parents to be able to say, is this about me or is this about my child? That was huge for me. This actually has nothing to do with my son. He is happy, he's fine, he's free, he's liberated, he's living his best life. I am the one who is anxious because of the implications of his behaviors in relationship to people that I had painful and wounding moments with. Right. And part of trauma is believing that people won't change. Right. There's a recapitulation in our brain that this is how it is, this is how it is, this is how it is, this is how it is. But I know someone listening right now has had the moment I've had where my parents did not grow up saying, I love you, you're so sweet. And now my parents are, like, kissing my kids on the cheeks and telling them they're sweet and all of this. And it wasn't always like that, but it became that because I made clear that it was not my child's responsibility. And if they cared about the connection between my child and them, then they would need to make adjustments. Right. And I think that's at the core of all trauma healing is knowing that adjustments have to be made for congruent and free living. 


00:16:02    Alyssa

Totally. Yes. And I also oh, my gosh, so many things that I see my parents do as grandparents. And I'm like, Where was that? 


00:16:10    Kobe

I'm like what? Oh, my gosh. You popped me on the hand all the time, and now you're telling me, don't pop him. Leave him alone. My parents were my catalyst into revolutionizing. How I parent, it was the pandemic. I was pregnant and I had a two year old, and I was just kind of like, oh, my God, I'm dying. What's happening? I'm like, morning sickness, kids, all the things. And my son was having a hard time, and we were like, okay, maybe we'll pop him on the hand, but then we'll explain to him why we're popping him. We were, like, trying to figure out what works for us. And my parents, King and Queen poppers, were like, don't pop your kids. It'll make them lose trust with you. They said that. And I was like, okay. And that's really what helped me take the nose dive into, okay, then how do I connect with my kid while guiding them? 


00:17:08    Alyssa

Yeah. And I think for me, one of the things I had to accept was like, what if they don't change? What if there isn't change there in their behavior? And the reality that my child's parents are me and my husband, they're not my grandparents. Right. The grandparents are not his parents. The relationship that I have with my parents is as my primary caregivers, I get to write a different story for him if my parents never change a single thing from my and this isn't like a bash my, they did so many incredible things, and like, every single human walking this planet right now, they aren't perfect. And so with the imperfections, I have so much power in rewriting stories for him, for my little guy, and they don't have to. 


00:18:15    Kobe

Yeah. And that is what it looks like when we take responsibility for our lives, which is like you can't even begin to do trauma work without coming to the place where you say, this is my life. Because it's so easy to be controlled by the voices of the past, the voices of the people around you. And saying, this is my life does not mean you're not affected by those voices. It doesn't mean you don't hear them. It doesn't mean that those voices don't deeply hurt and affect your everyday emotional state. Right. But when we get to a place where we say, this is my responsibility, my husband says this all the time. He said, It's not your fault, but it is your responsibility. 


00:18:59    Alyssa

Yes. I love it. 


00:19:01    Kobe

It didn't happen to you because you did something wrong. But now you do have to do something to make it right. 


00:19:08    Alyssa

Yeah. And for me, that felt empowering to say, like, I get to write a different story for him if I'm willing to do the work. 


00:19:19    Kobe

Yeah, and as you write a different story for him, you're writing a different story for yourself. 


00:19:24    Alyssa



00:19:26    Kobe

Like, parenting our children well is reparenting ourselves. Parenting our children well is stepping into the authority we didn't have as kids, stepping into the voice that was silenced as children, stepping into the position of freedom and protection, of that freedom that we didn't have in the past. And so I think that is why the work that you do is so incredibly powerful, because there's no way for us to serve our kids well without it also transforming our own hearts. 


00:20:02    Alyssa

Have you been scrolling the Internet? And there's all these tools for calming your child and how to regulate and whatever, and you try them and your child just gets amped up or that doesn't work. Or you find yourself in these cycles where it's like epic meltdown. Try to come back from it and you just feel like you're putting out fires all day long. If this is you, you aren't alone. And we collaborated with an Occupational Therapist to create our Sensory Profile quiz. This is going to help you learn about what helps your child regulate what's happening in their unique nervous system. We are all different and figuring out what you're sensitive to or what helps you regulate is the key for actually doing this work, for getting to a regulated state, for having tools, for calming down, for having tools for regulation. Head on over to to take the quiz for free. You can take it as many times as you like for as many humans as you'd like, and we will deliver results right to your inbox to get you kick started on this journey. 


00:21:17    Alyssa

Yeah, it's so true. And, like, every time, I let him know, I love you when you have needs, I love you when you're having a hard time. I'm letting tiny human Alyssa know that, right? 


00:21:30    Kobe



00:21:30    Alyssa

She's getting a big old hug and hearing what she didn't get to hear. 


00:21:35    Kobe

Absolutely. Yeah. 


00:21:36    Alyssa

Oh, I love that. How is trauma processed in our bodies? Because I feel like this is a conversation that's really coming to the forefront right now, and I think it's so powerful, and again, for me, feels empowering to be able to dive into. 


00:21:54   Kobe

Oh, my goodness. As a therapist, I'll say this is like a it's like a whole other podcast, but I'll like condense it. So all of our experiences deeply affect our nervous system, our autonomic nervous system. Our autonomic nervous system is split up into the sympathetic, which is the fight, flight, and the parasympathetic, which is the rest, and digest in a perfect world. Huge finger quotations. These two systems are working together beautifully. Right? They're complementing each other. They're helping us stay safe while helping us stay connected and learn new things. They're helping us protect ourselves while also helping us to experience laughter, enjoy, and play and silliness. Right. Fight or flight helps us notice when there's danger and when we need to back away or when we need to assert ourselves, and then the rest and digest system lets us just be human and be free and be good as we are, right? But what happens when we experience trauma is the sympathetic nervous system is like the alarm of a house, and it gets stuck on. So the point of an alarm is to let you know when danger is imminent, right? To let you know someone's breaking into the house, okay, you need to get up, get your firearms, whatever you need to do, get yourself together to protect yourself and to be aware that there's danger before you. But could you imagine living in a house where your house alarm is always going off? 


00:23:21    Alyssa

Yeah, I've lived in it. Yeah, I can't imagine. 


00:23:27    Kobe

It's incredibly distressing just because it's quite literally overwhelming. The idea that the alarm is going off is overwhelming. And on a biological level, that alarm going off is a constant coursing of hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. And those hormones are actually only designed to be released in our bodies in small bursts, right? They're not supposed to be released with longevity. And so the same way alarm is not supposed to be going off all the time, because if an alarm is going off all the time, how do you know when you're actually in danger and when you're not? It leaves you in a place of constant, perpetual anxiety because you never know if the alarm is going off because someone's at the door or if alarm is going off because it's just broken, right? And so it kind of pulls you out of reality and disorients you. So when adrenaline and cortisol are pumping all the time, one, it weakens your immune system. It weakens your ability to process emotions. It activates the fear centers of the brain, and the fear centers of the brain shut off the part of the brain that helps us learn and consolidate information from short term memory to long term memory. And that's so important for parents to know. That's just like a snippet, it's so important for parents to know because the main question I get when I say all this information is, okay, the alarm system is on. I am anxious all the time. I am on edge all the time. I can't sleep. I can't think. I can't concentrate. I can't remember anything. How do I turn it off? We turn it off with safety. And safety, just like trauma, is deeply personal and deeply contextual, that's important for us to know as parents. It's important for us to know as humans, right? So the thing about safety is, because it's so contextual and so personal, no one can define what safety is for us but us. That's important because the same is true for our children. We can't just be like, oh, you're okay. You're fine. If our kids don't feel safe, telling them that they are safe does not make them feel safe. 


00:25:29    Alyssa

Never in the history of "you're safe" have I felt safer. 


00:25:33    Kobe

Never. That needs to be on a t shirt. Truly never. And so the reality is, safety has to come from honesty and it has to come from belief. It has to come from a place of like the truth is I don't feel safe around these type of people. And so if I want to even gain the resources to be a more present parent, to be a more caring present parent, to be someone who can truly connect with my kid you can't connect with your kid until you feel safe. So you have to understand the value of safety in your own life so that you can have that rest and digest, come back on in appropriate times. And so that when you learn information, you can actually consolidate it. And it can be a mental resource that you can draw from. The same is true of our children. We can't make them feel safe. Right. And what's so hard about safety is the idea of safety defers power. Our children get the power to tell us what makes them feel safe and we have to believe them. 


00:26:45    Alyssa

100%. And it might conflict with what we envision it would be, right? Yes. That part is the hard part for me. My son and I have very different nervous systems. And for him, one of the keys to safety is validation. And understanding that somebody is acknowledging his experience starts to turn the alarms off for him. Right. Whereas for me, initially, it's more physical. Like I will need to move my body or I need a hug or like I need that sensory regulation. And for him, that understanding, validation, connection is what first starts to turn his alarm off. So if something happens and I can just reiterate what happened without saying like, yeah, and it makes sense that you hit me across the face, I don't have to add in, but I can just say like, oh, man, you really wanted to move that just this morning. You really wanted to line up all the spices to make a train. And when you pushed that one, it fell off the table and it broke on the ground and that was really scary. 


00:27:58    Kobe



00:27:59    Alyssa

And I'm not adding in there. And I had told you 7000 times to not push those over because that was glass and it's going to break. Right. I don't need that in there. 


00:28:08    Kobe

And this is what happens. 


00:28:10    Alyssa

Correct. Yeah. You brought it up on yourself. Those are things that go on inside. But like, in the moment, just validating that for him, turned his alarm bells off. And when we learned that about him, it made finding that homeostasis easier. But for me, still in the moment doesn't always feel like my go to because it's different than how I usually receive safety. 


00:28:37    Kobe

And we cannot even embark on the journey of healing our trauma. Understanding the reality of how our trauma impacts us or applying the skills that we're trying to gain without safety. 


00:28:50    Alyssa



00:28:51    Kobe

And a lot of us are just kind of like as we're activated, we're panicking and we're just chugging information. We're like, Give me all the information, give me all the information. And then the moments come for us to apply the information and we try to make a withdrawal. And the safety deposit box is empty. Correct. Because we didn't learn that information from a place of safety. We learned it from a place of reactive panic and terror. Right. Like, this sense of like, oh, my gosh, things are terrible, and I'm just terrified, and my kid's going to turn out to be horrible and bite someone in the face with their 18 years old if I don't fix this right now. Right. We're panicking. 


00:29:31    Alyssa

We've been living inside my head. Spiral happened so fast for me, so fast. 


00:29:36    Kobe

With like, 2 seconds, maybe 1.5. Like, you bit me and now I see you biting another child in the face in high school. And so the reality is we have to prioritize safety. Safety has to be at the foundation of the way we live. 


00:29:56    Alyssa

I have a question for you. I think, for me, one of the biggest game changers. I lived with anxiety for a really long time. I had... trigger warning here for folks. I was raped when I was 14, and I didn't have a safe space. 


00:30:09    Alyssa

I'm sorry.


00:30:10    Alyssa

Thank you. I didn't have a safe space to turn to with that. And so I was living in dissociation is the name of the game for me. I can do it like it's nobody's business. And so I was, on the surface, straight A, student, president of student council, star athlete, blah, blah, blah, blah. And inside I was drowning, right? Yeah. And I found myself late teens, early 20s, like, living in a state of anxiety. And the key for me in getting out of that was actually learning how to allow fear to exist, because I was so used to living in fear and trying to get out of it, and it was like, quicksand. 


00:30:56    Alyssa

Right. Like, the more I coping mechanismed my way out of fear, the deeper I went into it. 


00:31:02    Kobe



00:31:03    Alyssa

And I had to find this balance of allowing fear and then asking myself what would happen if? And even entertaining that idea of what would happen if was huge for me. And now it transforms to parenthood. We're on this vacation. Respect was huge in my household growing up, huge manners, all that jazz. And we have a different approach to it as parents now. And my husband and I, and we're on this vacation, and my dad is withholding something because he's like, you can say please for it. And I just felt so, like, immediately I was like, he's rude. He's going to be a little brat. Like, he's going to go down the road. And these skills are skills I want him to know. I do want him. To be grateful when he receives something I do want him to ask kindly for things and then eventually got to a place of like, oh, actually, I am in a different space now. I can advocate for him, and got there and immediately spiraled down to like and that's how it shows up for me now. It's not as much of like, I'm living in this state of anxiety all the time, but I can jump into it real fast when I'm triggered from things from childhood. But so I'm curious to hear from you around when you are in that space, what does it look like to cultivate safety, whether you're living in that state of anxiety or you're like me with the respect thing where, oh, now I'm triggered, and how do I find safety? What are a few ways that I know it'll be different for everybody? What are a few ways people might find safety? 


00:32:41    Kobe

Yeah, I think your example thank you so much for sharing that is so powerful, because safety is not the absence of distress. I think that's something that we think safe means there's no danger. Safe doesn't mean there's no distress. And sometimes the safest place we can be is close to the emotions that are difficult to feel and safe enough to know that we can get close to those emotions without being in danger. 


00:33:13    Alyssa

100% right. 


00:33:15    Kobe

And I think that when we get close to those emotions without the idea of danger, we begin to shoo off, just like the unhelpful and fake narratives that tell us that acknowledging an emotion is the same thing as indulging an emotion. Right. That acknowledging and connecting to fear means being consumed by fear and then living a fearful life. Right. 


00:33:37    Alyssa

And it's the opposite. 


00:33:39    Kobe

Yeah, absolutely. A lot of our anxiety is because we're constantly trying to run away from emotions that we've labeled as negative, when really there are no negative emotions. There are emotions that are harder to process and deal with, and there are emotions that are easier to process and deal with. And so I think that safety looks like, for me, I feel like a natural byproduct of safety is courage. And so I always ask myself, in what environment would I feel most courageous? Would I feel most free to do something different? Would I feel most free to try something I've been wanting to try but maybe felt a little bit nervous? And courage is persistence in the face of distress, and there can be danger at the end of the other end of whatever we choose to be courageous about, but is about having a sense of assurance that danger is not going to consume us. Right. And so I think safety is asking yourself, what environments do I feel a sense of peace, but also a sense of peace that can lead me into courage. I'm not talking about avoidance. Right. And sometimes avoidance for a season is okay. Right. If we're overstimulated, we might need to avoid for a little bit. If my kid is like, I don't know what it is about screens, I'm waiting for the science to come out. Two minutes of screens turns into 3 hours of dysregulation for my child. I don't understand what it is and it's probably true of me too. And I just ignore it in my body because I'm used to it and I have to do it. Just thinking like, okay, what environments allow me to feel a measure of peace that gives me courage? And courage isn't always just action. It can be an action. It takes a lot of courage for me to rest. Takes courage for me to cancel sessions and say, actually, I'm not going to make that meeting. It takes courage to cancel on someone that I've planned to do something with because today I'm just too overwhelmed. And so I think that when we think about environments that give us peace and allow us to be regulated, it's important for us again, it's contextual because for someone, courage might be, okay, I'm going to step out. And for someone else, courage might be like, I'm not doing anything but asking ourselves, what are the contexts in which I feel enough peace to do or not do something because I want to and not because I feel like I have to. 


00:36:09    Alyssa

Yeah. Oh, man. I can't stop feeling the connection to what you were saying about the emotions that distress. In our work, we refer to it as dysregulation, but that it the you can have both safety and dysregulation at the same time. And when we were creating the CEP method my work is based on, we researched across the US. We have five phases of emotion processing and number three is security. And that's exactly what it is. It's this security in feeling your feeling without trying to make it go away. And I think for so many of us with these labels of like, am I supposed to feel this? Is it a bad feeling or a good feeling? Right? These labels on feelings then lead us to living in this state of dysregulation because we're trying to not feel that right. And a friend of mine just the other day texted me, she's been trying to conceive space and journey in her life and she was like, oh, my period just like, snuck up on me and I thought it wasn't coming and it was a few days late. And now like, man, I thought this was going to be it. And our folks at Seed know, I had a long trying to conceive journey with some miscarriages in there and I was I just like, know that feeling. And my response to her was, I hope that you allow yourself some time to grieve what you had just envisioned to make space for what is. And she was like, oh, my gosh, I needed that grief reminder. But I think it's one of those things where, what am I grieving? I didn't lose something. Right. And it's one of those emotions I think we don't allow ourselves to experience. 


00:38:02    Kobe

Oh, my goodness. Yes. I have an entire chapter on my book about grief. 


00:38:07    Alyssa

I love that. Can you give me quickly, kind of the breakdown of what's the structure of your book? What can we look forward to within it? 


00:38:14    Kobe

Yeah, well, I think the structure of the book really walks through it mirrors my client experience, people being like, I want to stop doing this, or I want to start doing this. And I've tried everything, and it's not working. So now I'm in therapy because I'm like, why can't I change? And then we slowly got to get into how the everyday patterns we struggle to change are tied to the past pain we haven't processed, right? And so walking through that and helping them understand this book walks through a lot of perspectives of faith, of how many people of faith feel like, I'm not allowed to feel emotion. It is bad for me to feel emotion. God is mad at me. God is upset with me. And just walking them through like, no, that's not true. Let's walk through the patterns and the past moment and the negative core beliefs that come from your trauma, which is, like, the lies, the stories and the lies that we live inside of. Let's talk through triggers. And then the first part of the book is about like, hey, what happened to you? And the second half of the book is how we heal ourselves. And the first chapter, the second half of the book goes through my clients always ask, like, okay, so what do I do about all this? Okay. What do I do? What do I do? And in that case, they already have a sense of safety with me. I would usually say safety, but safety starts. We have that relationship in therapy, but I say we grieve before we try to gain another thing, fix another thing, tweak another thing, cut another thing off. We grieve that we had to go through this in the first place, not that we had to, that we did go through it. We grieve what we thought we would get. We grieve what we deserved. We grieve what we expected but never came. We grieve all of that, and we let ourselves grieve it. Because I don't think we realize enough that grief is going to give us the resource for the journey ahead of us. Right. The sadness and the anger for the things we've experienced directly correlate to the value that we have for ourselves. And a lot of us are trying to skip over grief just because culturally, it's, don't be angry, don't be sad. You're inconveniencing everybody. You're being a boar. You're bringing the vibe down. We've heard all those things before. But anger is an emotion that communicates that something was worthy of protection. The more acquainted we are with anger and our stories, the more acquainted we become with our self worth. 


00:40:50    Alyssa

Yes. Oh, I love the whole chapter on grief, and I love that that's how this starts out. That, personally, for me, has been huge in healing and learning how to grieve. Like, what does that look like? How do you do that in practice? And you know who's so good at it? It's kids. Kids are fantastic at grieving. When we were researching the CEP method, we had this little guy, and he's like, four, three or four. And when things didn't go the way that he planned, he would constantly say he would say, that wasn't my expectation. And I was like, oh, my God, I love you, and I love that, and I'm going to borrow that. That's incredible. That wasn't my expectation. And that really was what so much of it broke down to, whether he was disappointed, he was sad, he was mad, he was scared. He expected something and something else was happening or happened, and it was like a part of his grief process, right, of grieving what he anticipated to allow for what was absolutely. And it's so powerful, and we often skip over it. 


00:42:02    Kobe

Yeah. And I also think that's why kids can move on so quickly. My son can have a tense meltdown. That's not what I wanted. That's not what I wanted. All the things and we connect and we let him know, that really sucks. You thought you were going to get this, you can't get that. We can't find blinky, all the things. You may have some puff for a little bit. And then he's like, Mommy can have some chocolate milk?


00:42:28    Alyssa



00:42:30    Kobe

He moves on because there's not this latent grief that's weaved in his everyday experience. He makes room for it. He feels it in the fullness of its intensity, and then he moves on. And that's not to say that every single situation should be like that, but I wonder what it would look like if we literally allotted time to just grieve. I wonder how many of us wouldn't feel so guilty or sad or melancholy in moments of celebration if we would have just given grief its time. 


00:43:02    Alyssa

Yeah. It's been a game changer for me, and I notice such a difference when I allow it and when I don't, and when I feel like I'm stuck in something or it keeps coming up or I can't get out of it or whatever, that's when I'm like, oh, what? Have I not grieved? 


00:43:18    Kobe



00:43:20    Alyssa

Man, this is so rad. I'm so jazzed to get my hands on a copy of your book, can you repeat the title for us and let folks know where they can follow you and find your book and find all your stuff, podcast, all that jazz? 


00:43:35    Kobe

Yes, absolutely. So the book is called Why Am I Like this? How to Break Cycles, Heal from Trauma and Restore Your Faith and honestly, this book is a book that, when I wrote it, changed my own life. I sat inside of the same Starbucks every single morning for months and just wept till snot came out of my nose as I wrote this stuff. Because the same way that as we parent other people, that we are healed. I think writing this book was just as healing for me as I hope it is for the readers. And so I'm just so excited about it. I've talked a ton on my social media about getting this book out there. Could you imagine 10,000 people whose lives are changed because they feel the permission to grieve? 10,000 people who are ready to deal with the past so they can live in the present? 10,000 people who are ready to feel a sense of safety so they can connect with themselves and their children. And so I have a wild, crazy goal of this book getting on the New York Times bestseller list, and a wild, crazy goal of this book being in the hands of 10,000 people by April 4. And I'm so excited about it. If you want to follow my journey and be connected to me, you can follow me on all social medias, instagram, TikTok, all the things @KobeCampbell_ underscore so @ Kobe and then Campbell like the soup, underscore Campbell, like the soup is also how I tell people about my last name. Yeah, a lot of people are thrown by the b or by the p. They're like, what? 


00:45:05    Alyssa

Oh, I love it and the power of it. You say 10,000 people, and I'm like, man, can you imagine a world that's like, how I feel about our tagline here is "the future is emotionally intelligent" at Seed. I'm just like, can you imagine truly a world where your boss, your best friend, your teacher, your nurse, your mom, that they've done this healing work or actively doing this healing work and can show up as a more regulated adult to connect with you and this cycle breaking? That can happen? 


00:45:42    Kobe

Oh, my goodness. 


00:45:44    Alyssa

It's so powerful. You are so powerful. I'm so grateful for you. Thank you for being here, for this conversation and for doing this work with us. 


00:45:52    Kobe

Thank you. Thank you for having me. 


00:45:56   Alyssa

Thanks for tuning in to Voices of Your Village. Check out the transcript at Did you know that we have a special community over on Instagram hanging out every day with more free content? Come join us at Take a screenshot of you tuning in, share it on the gram and tag to let me know your key takeaway. If you're digging this podcast, make sure to subscribe so you don't miss an episode. We love collaborating with you to raise emotionally intelligent humans. 


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