Your Life: The Sequel

Julie Kramer- The Step before Unstuck

March 13, 2021 Rick Rochon and Melissa Carlson Season 1 Episode 5
Your Life: The Sequel
Julie Kramer- The Step before Unstuck
Show Notes Transcript

We had the pleasure of hosting Julie Kramer on Your Life: The Sequel. Julie has helped 1000's of people to move past that point of being stuck to being fulfilled. It's not uncommon for someone to want to be a successful career person and get all caught up in the trappings of that life and then feel unsatisfied.  Julie chats about working with different types of clients to help them to become fulfilled individuals living their best lives.

Some resources from her time on the podcast:

Julie Kramer Coaching
From Grief to Gratitude on Amazon
Her reviews


Julie Kramer is a transformational coach, author and speaker. She is committed to using her
background to expand awareness for people to transform themselves to achieve fulfillment.
Her services focus on helping people become the hero of their own life story as they integrate
lost parts of themselves.

Her life as an executive coach and search consultant has led to success in high tech start-ups,
Fortune 500’s, and venture capital firms. In the corporate world, she has hired top talent for
100’s of high growth companies and coached over 1,000 people to advance, pivot, or change

In the arena of health care, she has a Master’s Degree in Public Health Administration from the
University of Michigan and has served as Director of Planning for a Large Hospital developing
long range growth plans.

In the arena of coaching, personal counseling and grief support, she has served people dealing
with life crisis, substance abuse, loss of loved ones, and loss of direction and lack of purpose.
Her Master’s Degree in Values from San Anselmo Theological Seminary, provides the
foundation for value assessments and conflict mediation work.

All together, she has provided spiritual direction, personal and executive career coaching to
over 10,000 people. In addition to receiving a Master’s Degree in Systematic Theology from the
Graduate Theological Union, she has a certificate in Spiritual Direction from Mercy Center in

Burlingame, CA, and has worked for 8 years as a Hospital/Hospice Chaplain. In addition, she
taught classes in world religion at Contra Costa Junior College.

After coaching thousands of people to find their calling, purpose and mission, she would like to
share her knowledge and guide you on your transformational journey to achieve fulfillment.
Her 30 years of work as a career coach, spiritual director and speaker has led her to develop
this program and she is excited to work with you to transform your life!

Your Life - Julie Kramer v02.mp3

Announcer: [00:00:04] Welcome to Your Life, the sequel, a podcast about getting your act together and making changes happen in your life, you want change and we want to help you with guests and discussions about how to make change in your life, whether big or small change can happen. This is your chance to become the person you were meant to be. Now, here we are, Rick Rochon and Melissa Carlson.

Melissa: [00:00:29] Welcome, everybody, to Your Life, the sequel.

Melissa: [00:00:32] I'm Melissa Carlson, and I am Rick Rochon. I am so excited for today's guest.

Rick Rochon: [00:00:39] The very special Julie Kramer is with us. She is a transformational coach, author and speaker. She's committed to using her background to expand awareness for people who are looking to transform themselves to their career, looking for fulfillment in their lives. She serves people who are looking to be the hero of their own life story as they integrate lost parts of themselves that is so near and dear to our hearts here at Your Life, the sequel. So without further ado, Julie Kramer, welcome to the show. And please tell us something about yourself.

Julie Kramer: [00:01:14] Well, it's a delight to be here. I feel like I'm with, like, minds, and I'm so thrilled to find you guys.

Melissa: [00:01:22] Yeah. Tell us a little bit about what you do, Julie. It's incredibly interesting.

Julie Kramer: [00:01:27] Well, I'm a coach and a spiritual director. Basically, what I do is I work with people that are going through change and my mission is to help them. Go through the change quickly and easily and well, and my focus is on helping them find the wisdom so that they can release the grief and move quickly when you're looking at somebody to bring in as a cleaner to talk to them.

Melissa: [00:01:59] Who is it that you serve? Who is it that you look at and say, OK, I can help you? You are somebody that I can use my skills with and on?

Julie Kramer: [00:02:06] Well, it covers a wide range of people. In the past I've been a chaplain and I've worked with people that are sick or dying. Then I was also a career coach, so I worked with extensively with people that are changing their livelihood. But now I'm working with really everyone. So this includes people that have gone through a divorce, may have lost a loved one. They may be changing their life focus. They may be in crisis over value conflicts with people, but they are close to it could include people that are feeling lonely and stuck and they just want to move on to the next thing. And really, it includes virtually anyone who's going through a change.

Melissa: [00:03:02] I Ludwin, when Rick said that we had you on as a guest, because I think that is really if we talk about we have been talking about people changing and making new decisions and some exciting some maybe not so much, but that really is to me, the core of it, that the that the bit that is the hardest. And that is when you are stuck, you want to change, but you can't. And that's really what you focus on.

Melissa: [00:03:24] How do you get people to get unstuck?

Julie Kramer: [00:03:29] Well, it's a methodical process, and part of it involves voice dialogues, which is a system that was developed by Helen Sedra Stone there, psychotherapist. And basically what they've done is they've developed a method to help people realize that they're comprised of multiple selves. In other words, we have our ego self. We have our heart self. We have the inner artist. We have the inner CEO. We have the inner hippie, the inner rebel, the inner banker and so on and so forth. So when people are stuck, what I found is it's always because there's a conflict within. And what I do is I start interviewing them and going deeply into their different parts to figure out what part is in conflict. So, for example, it's very common for highly ambitious, highly motivated, career oriented people to get stuck because their inner artist doesn't feel fed or their inner activist doesn't feel fed.

Julie Kramer: [00:04:59] I'm finding a lot of people have this inner activist which is committed to doing good in the world and they're not feeling like that inner activist is getting any nourishment or credibility in the world.

Julie Kramer: [00:05:16] And so what I do is I figure out what part of them is not getting fed and not heard. And then I work with the other side of that. That's. Repressing them, it's usually the ambitious money oriented side as well.

Julie Kramer: [00:05:35] You can't go start your own business to serve the poor because you're going to screw up your lifestyle and you're going to screw up your income flow and your family won't allow it. Yeah, I mean, I actually worked with somebody who was a corporate attorney for a venture capital firm that I worked for. And we were colleagues at that time.

Julie Kramer: [00:06:05] I was doing executive search work, but then I became a coach and he hired me and he turned out his passion was to be a rabbi. Wow. He was totally devoted to this and but is inner attorney.

Julie Kramer: [00:06:26] He was already working as an attorney and doing very well, would not allow him to consider leaving this work and going and becoming a rabbi.

Julie Kramer: [00:06:38] So he was kind of paralyzed. We had to do some voice dialogue work. It's very delicate work, but it's a negotiation, basically. And you have to really work with the aware ego, which is the neutral observer, and you have to go back and forth and back and forth and you have to let both sides hear each other. And then you have to say to each side individually, what I have to say to the rabbi, would you be open to working with the the corporate attorney?

Julie Kramer: [00:07:14] Would you be open to talking, working out a deal where you could have maybe one day a week and the rabbi would consider it and say, well, really, I want the whole five days, but OK, we'll start there. And then I go over to the corporate attorney and say, well, what do you think? And say, no, no, I can't give up. I can't give up one day a week. That would have to be Saturday. I say, well, OK, what about Saturday? And then we build a plan for over five years, you know, where they could gradually retire and leave the corporate world to go over to the rabbi rabbinic world. And I run into that all the time.

Rick Rochon: [00:08:04] Bet it's like you're meeting a rabbi and an attorney walk into Julie Kramer's office.

Rick Rochon: [00:08:12] I couldn't resist that. What I mean, there has to be so when you have you have people having their inner dialogues with themselves, that's the inner part.

Rick Rochon: [00:08:24] There must be an overlay of what society?

Rick Rochon: [00:08:28] Has laid upon us what our lives should be like and what we should be doing. You know, people shooting all over us. So what do you do when people are are you concerned about the outward appearances of the choices that they're making?

Julie Kramer: [00:08:45] Well, again, that's usually comes down to a conflict between the ego and the heart. And so at some point you can negotiate between them. But first you have to give the heart more space to to speak.

Julie Kramer: [00:09:02] And so what I do in that case is. Well, there's many ways that I do it.

Julie Kramer: [00:09:10] It depends, but and one way, by the way, is to go into the spiritual side of things. If the person is spiritually oriented, that's the fastest way to the heart and the soul. And so we can quickly go to that realm within them and open that realm up and find out what is happening in that realm within them. But if they're not spiritual, then we could look at their soul, their souls point of view.

Julie Kramer: [00:09:44] So I in fact, I have a class now. It's called Find Your Purpose.

Julie Kramer: [00:09:50] Find Your Calling, and it's eight weeks and one class is devoted to diving into your souls desires. What are the desires of your soul? And we have to kind of put a wall up and make a sacred place for the soul to come forward where the mind and the intellect and the ego won't keep interrupting. Sure. It's sort of like, you know, in therapeutic circles, they talk about boundary setting, but we have to do some boundary setting within our own psyches. And so what I try to do is set up some boundaries and I get agreement from people that we're going to just concentrate for the next hour on their spirit and their soul and their heart. And we don't really, unless the Western world, to have enough space for the spirit, the soul and the heart.

Julie Kramer: [00:11:01] You know, in the Middle East, they actually have more space for the spirit, the soul in the heart. And I think we need to realize that that's so valuable. We need to emulate that. You know, in the Middle East, when somebody dies, people weep openly in the middle of the street, on the bus. It doesn't matter where they are, but men and women will cry openly. We don't have that here. In fact, when I was a chaplain in a hospital one morning, a Middle Eastern family arrived in the lobby. There were like twenty five people wailing and grieving. And they asked me to come and get that under control. And I was so offended by the demand to get them under control and to move them out of office.

Julie Kramer: [00:12:12] Yeah, I was like, wow, this is not good.

Julie Kramer: [00:12:18] You know, this is just wrong thinking.

Melissa: [00:12:22] I like part of what you say in regards to speaking of grief is important to move from grief to gratitude. You say it's an important part of all. Let's talk a little bit about that. Grieving, moving from grief to gratitude.

Julie Kramer: [00:12:37] Well, you know, the biggest problem is the mind. And people think that grief is a lifelong thing. You know, if you go through a divorce or if somebody dies, they think, oh, it's going to be forever, get over it, just deal with it. It's always going to be there. I don't agree.

Melissa: [00:12:56] And that's just a mental construct. It's a it's a false belief. But the thing of it is the steps for getting. Through that are tricky, and I think we need to bring this out in the open and start looking at it. My solution and my recommendation is that what I found based on working with all these people is the sooner that their mind is focused on the wisdom gained from the law, the sooner the heart will let go of the grief.

Julie Kramer: [00:13:36] So we need both parts of ourselves to make this work. You can't just cut off your mind and go and wallow in the grief because then you're not getting anywhere and you can't just stay in your mind because then you're not bringing your heart. It's got to be a partnership of the heart and the mind. And the way I see it working is. The spiritual director, the coach, the guide can say to the person, what are you learning from this agony that you're going through? What possible blessing could come out of this that you would never get if you never went through this experience?

Julie Kramer: [00:14:25] That's the coach's role. That's the role of the spiritual director, in my opinion.

Julie Kramer: [00:14:34] That's the role that would bring value and transition the heart to give up the great, because once the heart gets that, there's some blessing. It's like the candy.

Julie Kramer: [00:14:50] Then they go, oh, OK, I'll let it go. And it's like it's in a second. It can happen in a second.

Julie Kramer: [00:15:02] And I think about all those people to like. It happened to me when I was younger, where I was in a company and it was my dream job and they lost their affiliation and I was gone and it was kind of like, sorry, here you go. And I think about all these people right now with Kowit and and just in general, maybe losing their jobs, et cetera. And you think to yourself, oh, my gosh, that's it. I'm so screwed. It's this is the end of it. And really, for me, at least in my position, that was the best thing that ever happened. Because of that, I moved I met my husband. I have to I can really go on. And if somebody can find that right. But but that's not always so easy to find from the jump. Right. What do you say to people who are in that spot, like, oh, my gosh, it's gone. I can't I've lost everything or I've lost my job? What's that first step to saying, wait, hold on, there might be something better.

Julie Kramer: [00:15:50] The very first thing I do is share this story. When I was a grief counselor for hospice, I had a group of people I was working with one man in the group. When I asked everybody, I go around the group and say, what? What do you think you might the blessing might be from those laws?

Julie Kramer: [00:16:11] And one man. When I got to him, he said, well. I had to lose the love of my life to find my soul mate.

Melissa: [00:16:22] No. Wow.

Julie Kramer: [00:16:26] And I said, oh, wow.

Julie Kramer: [00:16:30] Yeah, yeah, and I think that's it, it's it's like in my book I talk about how it takes some irritation in an oyster to make a pearl. And that's what we need to be kind of looking at and embracing. Now, we have to it's a complicated thing. It's like it's really alchemy. It's really taking one thing and turning it into another thing.

Julie Kramer: [00:17:06] And we can do that last week because we have both the intellectual and the emotional, if we were to put them together correctly, we can be all comments.

Rick Rochon: [00:17:22] Now, I find also that when people today think that we've all had microwaves since we were youngish and you put something in and you have a meal in three minutes. And so our expectation is that things happen very quickly and. I think that the work that can be done, it may look like you were talking earlier about a gentleman that was on a five year plan, and I find that, you know, people give up very early, they get discouraged. How do you frame things for people so that they understand that this is not trivial? You know, you didn't become an attorney overnight and you're certainly not going to not be an attorney overnight. I guess someone could take it away from you. But how do you work with people around level setting their expectations on what that path is going to look like?

Julie Kramer: [00:18:16] Well, you know, in my eight week class, it's called the Good Life Path. One of the classes is how to develop a roadmap to get where you want to go. And we we do it very methodically. For example, I recently worked with the head of the design director of a Fortune 100 company who was, you know, had the most enviable job in the world.

Julie Kramer: [00:18:43] I mean, he was the head of a design studio in the Fortune 500 Fortune 100 company. And he was doing very well. He managed like 50 people. And it was a very terrific job. He was doing it very well, but he was terribly unhappy because.

Julie Kramer: [00:19:06] It turned out that. Is core.

Julie Kramer: [00:19:10] Being was really an artist. He was really an artist and, you know, he would be happy in an art studio all day, just creating photographs, creating art and designing things and not working with all these people. And anyway, he was very, very unhappy. So I said, OK, well, what if you were to, again, have a hobby of creating artwork and gave yourself like maybe four hours a week to work on this for now? And then over time, step by step, you we worked out a plan where you could have your own design studio and we did that, we created a three year plan for that. And he's now working toward that plan. But it is hard. You almost have to have a community of people to support you. And I'm thinking about creating a community support group for this type of person.

Rick Rochon: [00:20:23] I was thinking, as you were speaking and coming from, you know, 20 years in corporate America, VP level kind of stuff, doing something that is feeding the activist in me with this podcast and where I want to take this work. I wonder if maybe what you are doing with people when you're when you're helping them in your process. Are you giving them permission to do the are you you know, maybe they can't generate it on their own? Maybe maybe there's a part of it where you're giving permission for them to actually fulfill their own needs.

Melissa: [00:20:58] And a lot of us need that. We need someone else to say, you should write. I do. I do. Yeah.

Julie Kramer: [00:21:07] Yeah. You know, I should really put together a list of people that have made these big changes because I think having that documentation would help people.

Rick Rochon: [00:21:20] Yes.

Julie Kramer: [00:21:21] There is a book on this by Daniel Pink. I can't remember the name of it. He's an awfully good artist writer, but he writes about the Innovation Nation, I think it is. He talks about how the majority of people working today are really self employed. Oh, yes, I realize that. But many, many, many people, I think it's over 50 percent of all unemployed people are self employed. And those people that are in the corporate setting, they don't realize that. They tend to think that everybody's in a company. And so part of it is really giving people permission to make a change.

Melissa: [00:22:05] How would you say that your approach is different from what what others do? It feels to me like coming from someplace like hospice to what you're doing now. There's got to be a connection there. And that, I think for anybody who maybe isn't even making a big change, but so many of us have experienced loss before you could they can kind of understand the concept behind it.

Julie Kramer: [00:22:25] Well, I think one of the big differences is I do bring the spiritual in to be a central. Player in the process and what I've realized is that our hearts and souls are connected to our spirits, you know, back in the day of Plato and Aristotle. I researched this. I thought, now how are they defining soul, spirit and heart? Well, there was no agreement between all these guys, Aristotle and Plato and Socrates. They all had different ideas about the soul, the spirit, the heart. But what's missing in the Western world is soul, spirit and heart. And so whenever I can work with the spiritual side of a person that will speed things up because it along with the spirit comes the heart and the soul. And so that's a little different than most cultures. I mean, what I'm doing is I'm blending spiritual direction and coaching. Now, coaching doesn't usually bring in the spiritual and I must say I have criticisms of both disciplines, the spiritual direction people in my regard, from my point of view, there are two hands off.

[00:23:55] They believe that you should not provide any interference whatsoever if they they just let the person go. But I believe you have to provide some direction and the coaching people are, too. They're lacking spirit. So I believe you have to add spirit.

Rick Rochon: [00:24:17] That's wonderful. So to someone that's listening to this podcast that may feel really, really stuck and may feel like things will never change you now, human beings, oftentimes men, when we get sick, we think we can't remember the time when we didn't have a cold.

[00:24:35] We just it's our brains are just it's always been like this and it's never going to change.

Rick Rochon: [00:24:40] And so for those people that that are just feeling stuck, what would be a good place to start? What would be a good place of hope for them?

Julie Kramer: [00:24:53] I would you know, I have a whole about 10 books that I would recommend.

Rick Rochon: [00:24:59] We would love the list.

Julie Kramer: [00:25:00] Oh, I have all of them sitting right here. I could give them to you now. But the one that I recommend is of the water and the spirit by Mellado, my soul mate. You know, the indigenous people have the right idea, in my opinion. He is from Africa. He has two PhDs and he talks about how they do community ceremonies. And if nothing else, this book would be a wake up call to somebody who's stuck.

Julie Kramer: [00:25:39] And I would recommend it because I believe we need to shift our whole cultural point of view and start adopting some of these indigenous practices which involve ceremony in the community.

Julie Kramer: [00:25:57] And so that's one thing. Another one is Dr Eric Perl. The reconnection, he's got a radical approach that's like mine. And it basically involves moving into the realm of love. And and you have to really just ask yourself for somebody who's stuck.

Julie Kramer: [00:26:18] Ask yourself, are you willing to move? And change, yeah, and if you are, then you could read a few of these books and make that shift, or you could call me and I'd be glad to coach you.

Rick Rochon: [00:26:34] That's a wonderful one. So in closing, can you tell us where people can find you online? I think you have a worksheet that people might be able to access. Can you tell us a little bit more about where to find you all that good stuff?

Julie Kramer: [00:26:48] Yes, there are two places to find me. Are And if you go to, you'll get a free synopsis of the book. Right, but you have to put in http slash, slash W W, W, and then And then slash ebook. OK, but my website is, so that's how you can find me. [email protected]

Rick Rochon: [00:27:27] Wonderful. Thank you so much. It's been a real pleasure having you on the show. Thank you.

Announcer: [00:27:35] Thanks for joining us this week on Your Life: The Sequel. Make sure to visit our website,, where you can subscribe to the show in iTunes, Stitcher or wherever you listen to your podcast so you'll never miss a show or sign up for our newsletter. The Revitalist is filled with daily tips for making change in your life while you're at it. If you found value in this show, we'd really appreciate a rating and a review on iTunes. Or if you'd simply tell a friend about the show, that would help us too. Special thanks to our audio engineer and editor, Marc Kate. Be sure to tune in next week for the next episode of Inspirational Change.

[00:28:14] Be the change you want to be.