The Library

Why smiles, joy and laughter are the best medicine, role models and exemplars in life. In this episode Dr Rachel does a Q & A with Hanna, where they talk about how finding joy is an antidote to fear and Scotland evokes the greatest imagery of how nature heals. 

This episode provides a great reminder of the importance of smiling and the mirror neuron system, and how we can change our brain structure by spending time with certain people. We all need the joyful in our lives and this episode explains why. A reminder that we all don’t need to have experienced trauma to be a good role model and mentor to the traumatised.  

Key Insights From This Episode: 

  • I think that there’s not much space in everyday life for people to have that kind of reflection and realisation space. – Dr Rachel 
  • I’m a true advocate of having to have that connection between the brain, the body, your wisest parts. – Dr Rachel 
  • Not many people realise just the importance of what our feet do in the connection between us and the earth, carrying the weight every single day. – Dr Rachel 
  • Maybe the greatest asset would be to have humility and admit, even when something is great it’s always got an equal and opposite ungreatness. – Dr Rachel 
  • It’s so difficult to sit both with somebody in pain and also sit with your own pain and not do anything. I think one of the greatest lessons in life is when we can just sit with pain and just let it be. – Dr Rachel 
  • I feel like you have to be ruthless to live a simple life. – Hannah 
  • I think we’ve got to own the situation that we’re in. Yes, there’s things that are not within our control at all. But there’s plenty that is. And we need to focus on that. – Hannah 
  • I often say to people who have hypervigilant nervous systems, seek out people who haven’t because your brain will copy their brain, your mirror neuron system will copy theirs. – Dr Rachel 
  • Awe and awesomeness has been appropriated really inappropriately in that we’ll just say it automatically for something that’s pretty mediocre. – Dr Rachel 
  • I think going through a painful experience allows you to grow and provide you a certain amount of wisdom. – Hannah 

About Our Guests: 

Hannah Bornet 

Here’s what Hannah said about joining Dr Rachel on the podcast. 

“Chatting with Rach was both enjoyable and insightful – her questions got me thinking about my behaviour and values. It felt like a fun therapeutic chat with an old friend.” 

About Our Host 

Dr Rachel Taylor  

Dr Rachel Taylor is a neuroscientist with decades of experience exploring, discovering and solving everyday challenges faced by many, as well as listening to and telling the stories of people she comes across in her endeavour to show difference is good, trauma is endemic and joy is connection. She started UnBroken as she wanted to highlight that the system is broken not people and uses the UnBroken podcast to share her learnings, honest conversations and words of wisdom with the UnBroken Tribe of listener. 

About UnBroken  

UnBroken is founded upon the belief that the environment in which we were born, grew in, live in, work in, play in and rest in has a huge impact on how well we believe we are and how well we perform. Wellbeing and optimal human performance are not simply about the absence of disease, they are about the ability to live purposefully, intentionally, joyfully and freely.   

UnBroken provides a range of supportive online resources including a podcast, blog, apothecary and monthly online membership for people who dare to be different, are open to possibilities and want a different pathway to their own version of success. 


Dr Rachel: So hello, everybody. Thank you for joining us once again for The UnBroken Podcast.  

And today I’m very excited to have an amazing guest on. I’ve been wanting to get her on for a while, so I’m glad she has made time in her diary for me now. So without further ado, welcome to The Unbroken Podcast Hannah, how are you today?  

Hannah: I’m really good, thanks Rach. I’m really good. Thank you for having me, it’s very exciting. 

Dr Rachel: Thanks. Oh, you’re more than welcome. You’re more than welcome. I know you have lots of interesting things to say.  

Don’t laugh! I always find people so interesting and they’re like, “who me?” You have got lots of interesting things.  

So the first thing that I always ask people when they come on the UnBroken podcast is just to explain to everybody else what are you known for?  

Hannah: I think I’m known for being smiley. I’ve had it a couple of times comments like, you’re really smiley. I think that’s what I’m known for, until they get to know me and they like, go away.  

Dr Rachel: I actually love that because those smiles are contagious. So I’m sure that when you enter it and you’re smiling away, you will notice that if people previously weren’t smiling, they will be smiling when you leave.  

So, what I’m interested in, because obviously I love and neural system. That’s my bag. Is it sincere smile or is it a pretend smile? What kind of smile do you have?  

Hannah: Probably a variety of smiles. I have genuine smiles. I am genuinely smiley. It reaches the eyes as they say, but there’s definitely times that I have a nervous smile, so I definitely feel like it’s probably a different smile. It’s my go to expression.  

Dr Rachel: Well, having a rescue smiley face, I would say, is a lot better than the other resting faces that I shouldn’t mention! 

So how many other times in your life have you been asked what kind of smile you have?  

Hannah: You know what? I think you’re the first.  

Dr Rachel: There you go, folks, you heard it here first on the UnBroken Podcast.  

So if you are known for being smiley, what are you not known for?  

Hannah: Enjoying staying up late. I’m the one that reaches 9pm. And my friends, absolutely rip me for this. Just like getting a bit of a glassy eye, getting really quiet, not a night owl. I don’t like to stay up late.  

Dr Rachel: We are kindly spirits. I knew there was an inner connection that we had.  

I often don’t see 9pm, and there was a time when I was in recovery from quite a serious illness when 5pm was quite a late night for me. When the only 05:00 you seen is the one first thing in the morning. But I was always the friend who showed their face for a couple of hours and then was at home with a book and a camomile tea, in bed for nine. So I completely get you.  

Hannah: Do you also get to that point where you’re so tired you just don’t want to move, but end up just like sitting there and everyone else is still going on. I’m done, but I just don’t have the energy to do anything about.  

Dr Rachel: I actually have, like, a pose that goes with that. So I’m sat there, but then I sort of bend my wrists on my thighs. Quite soothing, yeah, I fully understand what you’re saying, and I actually have a specific pose that I do when I’m doing that. I think I’m trying to just, like, think, right. I’m going to move in a minute, right? I’m going to move in a minute. I’m going to get some energy and I’m going to move in a minute. But then it takes literally, probably a good half hour, three quarters of an hour to get me moving. 

Hannah: Yeah I get the glassy eyed smile.  

Dr Rachel: So on the UnBroken podcast, what I really like to ask people, because this is really important for me, is that I generally invite people on who I know have made pretty fundamental changes in life or have helped other people to make really transformational changes.  

So what had to happen for you to realise that change needed to happen in your life?  

Hannah: Change is constant. And for me, really being connected with what I’m feeling and kind of keeping in touch with myself. And I think I kind of noticed when I need to do something, I need to change is when I’m starting to feel like, low mood, less joyful than more joyful. I’m like, this is not what I want, and I’m very much of the opinion that it’s up to me to make that change happen.  

So looking at the options and deciding what to change. But I think I tend to notice that I go inward. I have a lot of reflection. I have a lot of deep thinking and kind of needing space for everything when I know that I need to do something to change. So then it’s just working out what that changes and try to make it happen.  

Dr Rachel: Yeah. I don’t think that’s really good reflection for the people to sort of hear about that because I think that there’s not much space in everyday life for people to have that kind of reflection and realisation space.  

And I really love the fact that you said that you connect with yourself because I’m a true advocate of having to have that connection between the brain, the body, your wisest parts.  

So what part of your body would you say is the wisest?  

Hannah: I think I would say my feet. My feet tell me a lot, because if I haven’t thought about them in a while then I know I’m not very grounded and that’s my favourite thing to do in yoga.  

Dr Rachel: Yeah. Well, they are pretty amazing. Not many people realise just the importance of what our feet do in the connection between us and the earth, carrying the weight every single day.  

So in terms of your feet, is the part of your feet which actually hold all the wisdom, or is it just all of it?  

Hannah: I think it’s the soles of your feet. I have to say, I really don’t actually like my feet. Feet with socks on, for sure. Soles of your feet. Also, reflexology is, like, the most amazing thing ever. I don’t know a huge amount about it, but it fascinating. And having a session is great.  

Dr Rachel: Yeah. I’m a great advocate of reflexology, acupuncture. When I have acupuncture in certain spots to connect with meridians, it’s like I know everything and nothing at the same time, and that always makes me cry.  

I know that I know nothing in comparison to the wisdom that’s out there. And I’m not afraid to say it. It’s like, I know there’s one point that I have where I’m going to know everything. I’m going to get it. Oh, no, it’s gone. It’s gone. And then I end up crying about it. It’s just so funny. But it’s like, the more I sort of learn about the brain, the more I learn about the nervous system, it’s like the more I realise that we just do a lot of guesswork. And although we have a lot of similarities as human beings, we have so many differences in that 0.1% of our genetics that is different. That makes us, us. And it’s just like, how can we ever hope to encapsulate that in a really simple formula?  

Hannah: If anyone is going to find out it’s going to be you. I have every faith in that.  

Dr Rachel: Curiosity. And that’s what we need, isn’t it? Curiosity I feel, is one of human beings greatest assets.  

Hannah: Absolutely 100% agree. I think we literally can make something from nothing. We’ve done it so well that we’ve now got ourselves into a whole heap of other troubles.  

So now it’s kind of like, what is our greatest asset, if our greatest asset is actually doing us a disservice? I’m not sure we quite caught up with that.  

Dr Rachel: Maybe the greatest asset would be to have humility and admit, even when something is great it’s always got an equal and opposite ungreatness. 

Hannah: Yeah. I definitely don’t think we’re there yet.  

Dr Rachel: There’s not much humility going on at the moment. That’s what I would say. I think there’s a certain amount of pain that goes alongside that realisation that we are not the Masters or mistresses of everything, that we’re all still apprentices. And I think that’s really important for people to understand is that, no one person can ever hold the key for everything. We might come close to knowing some things about other things. But I think certainly for some people, the realisation that they are not all that they think they are could be quite painful.  

So what does pain mean to you? What does it mean at all?  

Hannah: It’s such an interesting concept and actually take a minute to think about it.  

I think the physical pain that I’ve experienced, like the other day I shut my hand in the door and obviously I get my monthly period paid. So those kind of things feel very trivial.  

And I then start thinking about emotional pain. And I think I’ve actually been lucky in my life so far around not having exposure to a huge amount of traumatic pain. And I think probably the time that I felt most emotional pain was a distant relative who was my age, who I knew well, at least family connection. And she had breast cancer. And just that whole period around her kind of getting more unwell and then dying was just so hard to comprehend. And I think that’s where I felt that pain because you’re just at a loss and you just have to sit with it. And it’s so uncomfortable and so draining.  

This is what I mean when I say I just feel so lucky that I’ve not actually been exposed to a huge amount of life, and I know as I go through life, but just the inability to do anything about it makes it so much more painful.  

You feel a little bit desolate, and it was just something completely new for me and working through that. Ither things that maybe other people may feel kind of emotionally painful, I just kind of go a bit numb, but this was something that really impacted me.  

Dr Rachel: I think that’s a huge thing, and pain is different things to different people. And I always enjoy talking about pain and feeling pain as well. And like you say, it’s so difficult to sit both with somebody in pain and also sit with your own pain and not do anything. I think one of the greatest lessons in life is when we can just sit with pain and just let it be.  

Because we are sort of brainwashed. I say this to everybody. This is one of my favorite things, and no doubt people have heard this on the podcast before. That we’re sort of conditioned in that we should never feel pain. There’s something for pain. We can take that away. Certain Ibuprofen advertisements where it says 24 and relief from pain. And like, we can just go through life having relief from pain without actually even thinking about what the root cause would be, or just accepting that we need to just treat the symptoms of the root cause of pain. And that’s okay forever.  

But when we sit with pain, it brings a whole different dimension and a whole different meaning. And I think it’s quite philosophical, contemplate pain. I don’t think we do it enough. I also want to point out that you sounded almost quite apologetic when you say that you hadn’t felt as much traumatic pain as everybody else. There was definitely an apology in your voice. And I think that is interesting as well is that sometimes when we’re in a society when there is so much emphasis on fear and sort of anxiety responses and doom and gloom, we can sort of feel a little bit of guilty if we’re not collectively sharing in all of that. And actually, we’re all right. We’re actually smiley people. And it’s like what smile about? Well, notice if my smile is a glassy eyed one or not.  

I think also, we need to have people who aren’t fully immersed in to trauma because we have mirror neuron systems. And I often say to people who have hypervigilant nervous systems, seek out people who haven’t because your brain will copy their brain, your mirror neuron system will copy theirs. I might start using you as therapy. Go and sit with Hannah for half an hour and see how you feel after that. I think this is really important because as much as we want treatment for the symptoms of pain, I think we need to start dealing with the root problems of pain and actually acknowledge that we’re living a quite painful time. And people like you are needed to show people that it’s doesn’t all have to be this collective trauma.  

You describe something which happened with a close relative, and that sounded pretty much full of pain to me. Both from allowing somebody to be in their pain, someone a similar age to you. As human beings we compare. And that’s a huge thing, and it’s like, gosh, that could be me. What would I do if that was me? And it brings mortality to the forefront of everything.  

Hannah: Absolutely. I think. Yeah, it’s interesting that you say apologetic and there’s a bit of guilt in that. But there’s also a little bit of fear knowing that I’ve got some to come, because life happens. And I think going through a painful experience allows you to grow and provide you a certain amount of wisdom I think, in terms of how you can be a better person, how you can support others. I’m just aware of that journey is still to come.  

Dr Rachel: Well, having known you for quite some time now and having seen the good work that you do, I think you’re pretty much well on that journey. And I was going to say that just to help you along in that I know what you do to help others, and you are very empathetic to people’s needs and people’s pain. So I think you would need to just allow yourself the permission to know that you’re well on that journey, in my opinion.  

Hannah: Thank you. 

Dr Rachel: And in saying all of that, a lot of what we want to do when we want to make things better for people is that we do try to make things easier. I certainly have been a rescuer in the past. I’m very much a rescuer in recovery.  

And part of that was the realisation of just how important self-autonomy is. How important do you feel it is? Where is that in your sort of framework of human-ness. So I’m really interested in your stance on self-autonomy and how you perceive that fitting in with humanness. How important is it?  

Hannah: I think it’s probably the most important thing. You’ve got to have the ability to feel empowered to do what you need to do to make the most out of life, whatever that goal is for you personally. So for me, if I feel like I have not got self-autonomy, then that’s definitely a sign that something needs to change. Whether we are the Masters of our destiny or something cheesy like that, I think we’ve got to own the situation that we’re in. Yes, there’s things that are not within our control at all. But there’s plenty that is. And we need to focus on that.  

So I’m very much kind of looking at the options available to me. What I’m happy with, what I’m not happy with, what I can change, what can’t change? How do I get myself into a position where I feel more content, and that definitely is driven only by me. And some of it mental self autonomy. I feel like I have to do a lot of training my thinking. Well, that’s an unhelpful thought. I should change that. But also, your environment and what your surroundings are, who you’re around and making those exclusive choices.  

I remember I think when I first started in high school and I was kind of starting out the year group, and it was just like, okay, so who is happy? Who’s going to be fun to be around, get those motor neurons firing. And it’s making those choices.  

Dr Rachel: I completely agree. And it’s like I spend what seems to me a disproportionate amount of time just trying to explain to people the effects of everything that they get through any kind of sense, what it has on the body and therefore how they feel about themselves. And we can get really complicated about things. But really, the simplest thing is, what is going on outside and how is that going to affect your inside. And the environment is huge on that.  

Given that, where do you feel you belong the most? What’s the best environment for you?  

Hannah: This is really funny. I think I’ve lived in cities all my life. So I grew up in Edinburgh, I’m now in London and have been for eight years, but I think the place that I feel like I most belong and feel most happy is on a Scottish Hill.  

Trudging through heather, especially if it’s a sunny day. Love that.  

Dr Rachel: Well, my daughter, my only daughter, has just made what she says is a permanent move up to Glasgow to finish out her last two years in a Master’s, and she absolutely adores it there. When she was in her first year, because she goes to Strathclyde University, the first year one of her course mates got a little keyring to say that she was now Scottish.  

Hannah: Everybody always talks about how friendly everybody is in Scotland. Everyone wants to chat.  

Dr Rachel: Lucy is like, Mum, you need to move up here. I love it in Scotland. I think we’re going to stay here, and I’m like, yeah, I’m a bit too far from where she is right now. So might join her there.  

Going on to the next question, we’ve moved on quite nicely to this. Is ruthlessness good, bad or ugly?  

Hannah: My version of ruthless would be ugly. I feel like everyone’s got their own version of ruthless. I think mine would be ugly, and I think there’s a good reason for it. I think some people need to be ruthless, and some people do ruthless really well. Just kind of depends on what you’re trying to do, what your goal is.  

I think being ruthless in my world of inclusion and wellbeing probably wouldn’t go down so well. It doesn’t allow me to help educate people or bring people along on the journey or identify certain feelings and things like that. Ruthless doesn’t really come into that. So it’s not a thing that I do, but I think it’s needed. I think it’s necessary, but not for me. 

Dr Rachel: I love the delegation of ruthlessness to others. So, we’re agreeing that it is quite ugly, but a necessary part of human society.  

Hannah: I think there’s some people that can do it really well, and I do admire it. It’s just not for me. And it’s needed for society because otherwise you’re just stuck in the weeds. You need to be ruthless to kind of pull yourself up to the bigger picture.  

Dr Rachel: Yeah. Exactly. So, you don’t get tangled in all the mire.  

I think, especially where I sort of look at some circumstances and people are just not able to move on, or to change or to transform because they are sort of bogged down with detail and circumstances that are not that helpful.  

So the ruthless thing to do would be to sort of hold a mirror up and be truthful and be honest and be there to sort of hold them. But it is a difficult thing because I suppose it goes back to the pain question as well. It’s sort of ripping a plaster off, or sort of holding someone while you rip the plaster off. I think that’s the key difference with all of that as well. So, yeah, really interesting for me to sort of discuss and explore ruthlessness. Because I’m a bit like you in that, when I first thought of the concept, took a sharp intake of breath and then immediately, I think “I wish I was better at it”.  

Hannah: You kind of strive for simplicity. And I feel like you have to be ruthless to live a simple life.  

Dr Rachel: I’m just thinking many things have come out of these podcasts. In previous ones we’ve done away with gratitude journals because we don’t like them anymore. I was saying we want kindness journals. I said, I’m going to write a course on how to say no and mean it. So now I’m feeling like we need to start the School of Ruthlessness.  

Hannah: I would sign up to that. 

Dr Rachel: To all our listeners, would you be interested in the School of Ruthlessness? How to do ruthlessness kindly. Is that an oxymoron? Could we do it? I think we could.  

Hannah: I feel like that works. I’m there. I’m in. 

Dr Rachel: And again, I’ve copyrighted things before I’m copyrighting that now. How to be ruthless, kindly.  

So, you sold Scotland to me, Hannah, you sold it to me. I’ve had visions of you striding through the Heather. You know when you get a tufty bit of heather and the next thing you read a bog and you didn’t realise it. So this is leading us somewhere, so bear with me. So when was the last time you felt awe? Because I feel like you would feel awe on a panoramic view like that. So when was the last time you did feel awe?  

Hannah: That’s really interesting, I think I’ve definitely 100% felt awe… Do you know when you just think about how a landscape has been formed? So this is where I get a bit nerdy thinking about geography, the tectonic plates and how the volcanoes become extinct and all this kind of thing. And I’m just like, yeah, it’s completely awe, but I actually think I probably experience awe around humans.

I feel like probably the last time I felt awe most recently, I was in the car journey listening to the soundtrack of Hamilton, the musical, which I’ve seen live, but also listening to the soundtrack. Just the person behind, outside of Hamilton as a person, just like all the things that he was able to do. And he didn’t live very long. That’s just amazing. The dedication. Also, like going back to ruthlessness, he was very ruthless with how he spent his time, but, yeah, just that whole story. But also, Lin Manuel Miranda, his interpretation of it and his ability to create this musical that’s come from somebody’s head. It’s just literally jaw dropping. I think it’s just because it’s so far removed from my world in the office. And I listen to that soundtrack and I feel very inspired. To have that and I listen to so many times and still feel it so strongly each time. That’s amazing.  

Dr Rachel: I think it’s huge. It’s really well connected because it’s like awe and awesomeness has been appropriated really inappropriately in that we’ll just say automatically for something that’s pretty mediocre. When you get something that actually it makes you think, it connects your body, you get that emotional response, you get that wow. Like the real wow. I think that’s huge because you’re right. It is inspiring. It helps you to connect to something outside and larger than yourself, which I think is really important.  

And on a personal note, I have a little boy here who often ponders geography and the marbles of nature. Nerdy is a very attractive state in this house, Hannah. It’s really interesting because I’ve had two of my three children who have both expressed real fear about what’s going to happen when the world ends, a very real child thing, and sitting there and having to be truthful and explain different things and just say, “Well, it might not happen like that. They just think it is going to happen like that.” But knowing that you’re going to add to their nightmares, I wish sometimes they could just say, “no, it’s not real. None of it’s real”.  

Hannah: It’s just I feel like I go there because I’m just like, I just have to have a response. I was like, “Well, it’d be a bit rubbish for a bit, but it probably wouldn’t be for very long, because then you just wouldn’t do anything about it”. That’s my very dark thought there. Humans are going to be the first to go before anything happens to the world.  

Dr Rachel: Yeah, I think we’re quite arrogant if we think that the world is not going to be okay without us. Definitely.  

Hannah: I’m so impressed with all the focus and attention on the natural world and how we need to look after it better. And I’m just relieving to see that people are starting to pay attention a lot more than ever before and do and trying to do something about it. Humans are the cause of the mess. Let’s try and do our bit to change that.  

Dr Rachel: I completely agree. And I think that anybody can learn a lot about themselves observing the cycles of the world and the cycles of the season and how things ebb and flow and come and go. I was always really amazed to find little nuggets out where little things like when you should plant trees. And when you read about that, it’s like, “oh, that made sense that you should plant it as such a time, not when it’s meant to be busy doing something else. Plant them in the winter when they’re meant to just be hibernating. That makes sense!”  

When you just think about how much change we instil on ourselves and expect ourselves to just adapt and really overachieve at a time when we should just be bedding in as well. It goes back to your grounding analogy that your feet are the wisest, because when you’re grounded you’re at your best.  

Hannah: Yes. I think we need to introduce a hybernation workplace scheme. I think from October to February, don’t worry, you’re hibernating.  

Dr Rachel: I will back that 100%. You know that I can do the research to find that that will be good for us.  

Hannah: We can come out for the festive time and then go back.  

Dr Rachel: So if we can’t do hibernation, then the next best thing that we can do for ourselves is to play. So how do you play? And how often? 

Hannah: Do you know what, I want to play more often. Because it’s definitely something that I’m doing less and less as I get older, and I’m 33. I’m very conscious that I used to be more playful. So yes. Do you know what my favourite thing is to do, to the point that I got given a tea towel that said, ‘kitchens are for dancing’. That’s what I need in my house, the big kitchen, whack on the radio and just have a good dance. I need space though because I can do my pirrouettes and all that.  

But yeah, I like to play and I love an open field. 

Dr Rachel: Skipping across field with heather. That’s what I think I’ve got you in my mind now. I’ve got that vision and I’m holding it.  

So, Hannah, we’re nearly at the end of the UnBroken podcast episode, and I just want to thank you so much, but just a couple of things before we do end this episode. I want you to describe your philosophy for life for me, because I think it’s really interesting that you have all the different guests and they have different philosophies. And this goes to show other people who might be just struggling a little way or feeling a little bit lost that, you know what? There’s not a one size fits all. We can’t all get the same life path we have to make our own. So what is your philosophy?  

Hannah: My philosophy is probably seeking contentment and having patience with myself when I know what I want, but I don’t necessarily feel like I’m in the right space to strive for it, and allow myself to do that ebb and flow with what’s going on around me. As long as I’m working towards what I ultimately want and trying to reach that state of contentment where I think “Yeah, I think that’s why I went out of life, and the rest doesn’t matter”.  

I think we get caught up in so many things that just really don’t matter. So, it’s just trying to allow yourself to be who you are and allow yourself to be slow or calm when you’ve not got the energy.  

Dr Rachel: So, Hannah, that’s really interesting to me, because I am not a patient person whatsoever. That is one of my life lessons. Patience, which is really interesting. But what I got from just listening to you really was like this whole contentedly, patiently accepting. It’s just, you know, so nice. That really balanced, peaceful state is a really good philosophy for life to have.  

Hannah: Thank you. I don’t feel like I quite get it most of the time, but it’s what I’d strive for.  

Dr Rachel: I have a rule that you need to sort of 80% of the time. That’s all you need to do. It’s not realistic to be 100%. It’s not all the time. Life wouldn’t be interesting then, would it?  

I was laughing with a friend so much. It’s like you know, even if the horsemen were riding over the house and we’re in the apocalypse, I would still have unrealistic expectations of what I should be doing at that time.  

So the last thing I want to ask you, Hannah, and thank you so much, because this has been absolutely amazing. And I have certainly got some really good visualisations of what I need to do to improve things for myself, especially around patience. When you are walking amongst nature, you have all the patience in the world if you allow yourself to connect. Am I right?  

Hannah: Absolutely. Because nature evolves so slowly and just kind of respect that. And that’s awesome as well.  

Dr Rachel: And I need to share this with you because I can’t believe that I’ve actually managed to get this into a podcast. I have been growing a lot of things this year. I started my growing last year in the garden. This year, I expanded my repertoire and I’ve got some really fancy beans called Cherokee Beans. And they had the most impressive beanstalk. They really did. But they didn’t have any beans whatsoever on. And I thought, oh, no story of my life, we can’t actually get any fruits from it.  

Last week I had some time away. But before we did, I harvested my gardening, particularly my herbs, because I wanted to dry them out to make teas. But everything else got harvested. And I looked at this beanstalk and I thought, no, you’re too magnificent. You can wait. You can wait until I get back. And then I felt very virtuous because I planted a load of Green Manure, which is something new that I found out about. That you can replace soil by growing different things over winter, which was amazing. See you’re a nature girl, you know all of this. Then I was turned home and I went into the garden and guess what had happened to my beanstalk?  

Hannah: Did it have a giant coming down it?  

Dr Rachel: Haha, no it had actually grown beans!  

Hannah: Look at that. You just need to wait a bit longer.  

Dr Rachel: And don’t look at me, and let me do my thing.  

Hannah: That is definitely another philosophy. Just let it do its thing.  

Dr Rachel: My youngest was literally just as fast as I was picking them, she was eating them. She said these are so tasty. They are just so tasty. And then I was so proud that my beans, I proceeded to tell everybody, that they had arrived. In my absence. It has arrived. You get everything on this podcast, don’t you?  

So just before we finish, Hannah, tell me in one word, what would the next five years be like for you?  

Hannah: Glorious.  

Dr Rachel: I love that.  

Hannah: I am grinning as I say that.  

Dr Rachel: That’s an amazing word. I’ve got goosebump. I’ve got goosebumps, and I’ve got the little prickly tears, you know when you’ve been really emotional. That’s amazing.  

Hannah: Well, let’s hope it happens.  

Dr Rachel: If I’ve learned anything, Hannah, is that you just don’t have to look at it. And then it just happens.  

Hannah: It happens. I just need to sit and wait as it will be glorious.  

Dr Rachel: Thank you so much for your time and your insights and for sharing everything that you have done with me today and really huge appreciation and thank you anything in the future, can we get back to you to see how glorious things are?  

Hannah: Oh, absolutely. Of course. Hopefully I’ll have something exciting to share. Thank you so much for having me on UnBroken. Thanks so much. Lovely, lovely talking to you. 

Dr Rachel: So this is 60 second recap for that amazing question and answer session that we just had with Hannah.  

So the main thing that I want to actually just reiterate and really press home is that there is no need for collective trauma and no need for any shame or embarrassment. If you don’t feel that you’ve had enough trauma in your life, there’s plenty of people who have had enough trauma and us people, those people we really need to have those people who haven’t who are able to just smile at everything you have that joy, who have the ability to trample through those fields in Scotland, across the heather, everything that Hannah was describing. We need those smiles.  

We have mirror neuron systems in our brain. The more smiles we see, the more our brain is smiling. Just think about that. The more smiles you see, the more your brain is smiling.  

So that’s your 60 second recap so as ever, please do give us a five star rating. Put any comments below and subscribe to this podcast and the call to action, it is as it always is, share this with two people you feel that would benefit the most from being UnBroken. That would benefit the most from listening to the UnBroken podcast.  

So thank you, everybody. Thank you for listening, and I hope to speak to you again soon. 

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