Episode 164: The Unstoppable Katie Brinkley - From Radio to Marketing to Podcasting

your next stop Sep 19, 2022

Katie Brinkley is a social media expert who has been in the industry for many years.

In this episode, you will learn the following:

  1. How Katie Brinkley went from being a sports broadcaster to owning a social media agency
  2. How social media has changed since Katie first started using it
  3. What lessons Katie learned from her mentor, Susie Wargin

Katie Brinkley has been leveraging social media to grow audiences and income for over 18 years. Since the time of MySpace, she's helped her clients build a strategy to attract the right followers and generate consistent inbound leads in as little as an hour a week. From building corporate-level growth strategies for AT&T and DirecTV to implementing done-for-you social media for solopreneurs and local businesses, Katie has been at the forefront to the changes in how buyers engage on social media. Utilizing her platform-agnostic strategies, Katie's clients have been able to see bottom-line results at every stage of the sales process. Katie's history of radio journalism mixed with her social aptitude allows her to bring a unique insight and leverage her client stories to the forefront of their social strategy.

Remarkable Quote:

There were a lot of things where I do feel that it was great to be the only woman in the room for a lot of these opportunities. But also at that time, I feel like my questions had to be a little bit better. My questions had to be a little bit more thought out.”

“That's the very first podcast I launched. Sometimes I will listen to episode three and I'm like, oh my goodness, you can tell how nervous I was. And now I listen. Oh, man. I love seeing the growth, really of me and my business journey and my professional journey.”


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Welcome back to your next stop. This is Juliet Han. In this episode I speak with Katie Brinkley. Oh my gosh, you guys are going to love this. Her energy, her heart, just what she is doing is amazing and her journey and her story.



So she owns Next Step Socialcommunications which is a social media agency. You can actually find them at Next Stepsocialcommunications.com. She is on IG at Katie Brinkley. She teaches social media strategies. She was early in the radio.



She actually did stuff for the Denver Broncos. She's got three podcasts. Her first one was Rocky Mountain Marketing. She also has NFT ninjas and across the pond. I met her years now I think it's a year and a half clubhouse.



But then we've also done stuff on Fireside together. And then I got to meet her in person at Podfest because we were both speakers. You guys do not want to miss this episode. Have you ever been listening to your favorite podcast and that moment comes up and you think, oh my gosh, I need to share it? Well, now you can with picked cherries.



What I love about picked Cherries so much is that when I'm listening to my favorite podcast and that moment comes up that I want to share, I can take a Snippet which is called the picked Cherry and I can send that to my friends and family so they can get involved in the podcast that I love. It's almost like sending an IG or a Tik tok available now iOS and Android. If you're not picking cherries, are you really listening to podcasts?



Hello, guys. It's Juliette Han with your next stop. You know, I say this every single time, but I am so excited to have my guest Katie Brinkley. And when you're watching the video, you see my face. Hey, Katie.



How are you? Hey. I'm so excited to be here. It's just like seeing an old friend because we got to meet each other on Social audio and then we got to meet in real life and now here we are again. I know, it's so crazy.



So guys, I know you're like listening and being like, okay, I hear their excitement. I want to kind of introduce Katie and I know you heard it in my intro, but I want to do it again. So Katie is doing some really cool stuff. So her company is next step social communications, not next stop. But I love how we kind of had the synergy there.



She spends a ton of time on LinkedIn at Katie Brinkley. She is also on Instagram. I am Katie Brinkley. Which again is just like I am Juliet Han. That's why we totally get along.



But Katie, I have to kind of preference. So we met on clubhouse. It's been two years, year and a half. That's where we started, where we met. And Katie has this really cool thing where she has this branding and she's going to get into her whole business and what she does, because she also has two podcasts, by the way, across the pond where we met on Fireside and then NFT Ninja.



So when we met at podcast, that is, you guys might be like, oh, wait, I know who Katie Brinkley is. I heard a little bit about her. She's the one that had the hat, right? So when we were on the floor at Podfest, I was like, I know that hat. Oh, my gosh.



And I think I tapped you on the shoulder and I was like, Is this Katie? And you were like, oh, my God, is this Juliet? So that's where we got to see each other in person, which was so fun. We were both speaking, but when we saw each other at podcast, it was like old friends. I mean, it was really cool, right?



Well, and it just goes to say, the power of audio. I mean, like you said, we met on Clubhouse. We got to know each other a little bit by showing up to each other shows over on Fire Side. But the power of just talking to someone and seeing that little avatar pop up, it can have huge benefits for you and your relationships and your networking and in your business. So show your face, people.



Show your face on Instagram, show your face on camera as much as you can. But social media is an incredible tool when you decide to embrace it for your business. So true. And the other thing is that we talk about, and everyone knows that listens to my podcast is the power of storytelling. So when we met, I heard your story, it connected us even more about what you're doing, your mission, your passion, that you're a mom, but that you're in the podcasting world.



But I want to get into kind of what I love so much is also your back story, you know, what you did in college and out of college, because that also really connected us. So give us a little bit about who you are, where you grew up, where you went to university and those early days being a broadcaster on the radio. Yeah, you gave away the big reveal there, Juliet. I didn't say what you did. I didn't say what you did, because that's the big reveal.



Well, and that was the thing. Am I in podcasting now? I actually have three podcasts. It's starting to turn into a problem. And I said two.



Oh, my gosh. I know. It's starting to turn into a bad problem of just talking into this microphone all the time. But I love Radio. As a kid, I'm an only child, and as a kid, you get really creative and have a very vivid imagination when you're an only child.



So my parents bought me my first microphone when I was maybe ten years old, and I would sit in my room with cassette tapes and my microphone, and I would do little radio shows. I would play some music, and then I'd go in and DJ. I even created commercials. I love that. That was what I would do after school, hanging out in the wintertime here in Colorado.



But I also played softball. Just about every sport that you can imagine I played. And softball was my main sport. I played it competitively for about a decade. And I drove all over Denver to play these games, all over the state of Colorado, actually.



And when I would be in the car, my dad loved talk radio and he loved listening to this station called 850K Away, and they had a show on in the afternoon. It's called the sports zoo. On the sports zoo. I love that there are two men talking sports, and then every top of the hour, this woman would come on and she would talk about just the breaking news of the Colorado Rockies one today, not like the big headlines. She would just give the full update of what's happening.



And her name is Susie Warjen. She was called the sports chick. And I just thought it was so cool to hear this woman talking sports on the radio because really, it wasn't happening, that there wasn't women talking about football. I loved football. I loved playing sports.



I loved the Avalanche, I loved the Broncos. And just because I was a girl didn't mean that I didn't like those sports. So I loved hearing her top of the hour updates. And I was like, that's what I want to be someday. So fast forward.



I went to college. I played e collegiate softball, and I also worked at the college radio station. And that was going to be that's what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wanted to be a sports broadcaster. And while I was at the station, this thing called MySpace came out.



And with MySpace, we had to get. Banned to send us their music for free, for free of royalty. So you had to find a lot of unknown musicians. And I went all in on MySpace. That was my first taste of social media.



So finding bands, finding music for free at the college radio station landed my dream job right out of college. I actually worked directly with Susie Wargan. She was my mentor.



It's still great because she and I still talk today. That's incredible. It was absolutely incredible because I remember being like, holy cow, I get to work directly underneath you, like, you're going to be telling me what to do. This is amazing because I've looked up to you since I was 13 years old. But I landed my dream job right out of college.



I was a post game reporter for the Denver Broncos. Colorado Rockies, Colorado Avalanche and Denver Nuggets at 850k away. And I got to work directly with my idol, Susie Wardon, for a few years before she moved off into TV, but that's my backstory as to how I got involved in radio and a little teaser of how I got involved with social media. No. And I love that.



So, I mean, my first question is, what did your dad think of all of this? Oh, he's so proud today. Even today, he's like, Katie, you could be doing that. Like, we'll be watching a game or whatever, and Lisa Salter or whatever, he's like, that could be you. And I was like, I kind of missed the vote on that now, dad.



Or you pivoted career path. Yes, I Pivoted. Exactly. But I love the fact, right? Totally.



But I love the fact, and this is what I want the listeners to take away that because a lot of times we don't go back to when we were little and what our dreams were when we were little. We don't think about that, whether they were good or bad. And this is where I love connecting the dots to that. And you're an expert in doing that as well, and that's why this is so fun for me. But the fact that that was something that was a dream of yours, and you went after that dream, and so that's what I want the listeners to hear.



If you have a dream, just think about that little kid where you were and the fact that you painted that picture so well, that you sat with your dad in the car. And to these games. We have the love for sports playing at the high level that you were like, okay, this is what I want to do. This is my dream, and I have kids now that we're traveling all over, and I think, oh, I hope they pull something out of, like, when we were in the car. Right.



Because we spend so much time with our kids there, especially when they're in the travel sport. So I think that's so fun that it was like, this is what I want to do. It's a dream, but you put that into action, and that's what's so important. Like, you had that dream, and you're like, I'm just not going to let it be a dream. I'm going to see what happens.



I want to make this reality. So I love how you did that little tease, clearly. I mean, you're so awesome about the MySpace and then take us into this next journey, how you created your business. Yeah, well, like I said with Susie, she was my mentor for about three years. I worked station for four years, and the last year, this thing called Sirius XM came out, and everyone in the radio industry went, this is the end.



You know, like, comets falling from the sky and buildings falling over. I mean, we all freaked out, and I had zero TV experience. I do not feel comfortable on camera. I feel like I blink a lot, and I get all sweaty and nervous. I didn't have any camera or TV experience.



All of my experience in college was radio, and that's what I always wanted to do, was always radio. So Susie was a very well known name, still is a very well known name here in Denver. She actually has now transitioned back to radio and is the sideline reporter for the Broncos again. But she moved over to TV. And so I was like, okay, she's moving to TV.



This guy's leaving the station, and he's moving to La. Everyone was pivoting and making new choices and finding new opportunities. And I remember there was another announcer at the station, and he said, katie, I just don't see this really being good for radio. I mean, like, you're young. I would try and get out.



And I was like, okay, everyone else is doing that. Everyone else is doing it, I'll do it too. So I actually moved into marketing. And at the time, looking back, it's one of the things where I'm like, I wish I would have just stuck it out, but I didn't know. I was like, okay, well, I'll either try and find a full time radio job because what I was doing was part time.



I'll either try and find a full time radio job, or I will just see what else I can find. So I've moved into marketing, and I was the marketing manager for the Colorado Rockies TV station. So I was doing their script, writing their media buys, and I was also doing their social media. So I said earlier, when I was working at the college radio station, we had to get fans to send us the music for free. And everyone at the time was writing these handwritten notes, and I was like, this seems like a giant time suck.



So I went on to my space and I started connecting with bands, and I was like, hey, you know what? I'll make the connections for you at these different radio stations because I worked at the radio station in Denver, and I was like, I'll make these different connections for you, and I'll help you with your MySpace if you send me some free merch. Or next time you're in Denver, just give me some backstage tickets. So I was doing this on the side because being a social media or anything didn't exist, right? I did that for a while, and then this thing, Facebook, came out.



So I worked with local businesses, like the local coffee shop. I was like, do you want me to get your business on Facebook? Just give me some free coffee. And I was always trying to see like, hey, how can I help these different businesses and still kind of help myself out too? And learning about all these social media platforms as they were evolving and as they were coming out.



So when I got the job at the TV station, we really didn't have a social media presence. I think we had a Facebook page, but there wasn't anything posted there. There really wasn't anything being published or any ads for sure. And I got the TV station on Facebook and Instagram. We started doing Twitter Tuesdays where, like, different athletes would come in and take over the Twitter handle.



And I absolutely loved what I did at the station. And then I got laid off. So that was the next Pivot, right? So how many years was that? Because now that people do that all the time, right?



They have people take over their accounts. And so you were doing that way before. Do you remember what year that was? Oh, man. Well, for this TV station or for all these other little small mom and pop shops, I was just doing those on the side in addition to so I did that for probably about eight years, just, hey, why aren't we posting on social media?



And they're like, oh, well, because I don't have time for it or whatever. I'm like, well, I'll do it for you. Just hook a girl up, right? Which is so smart. People that listen to the show know that I truly believe we all have a path.



And you said something, and I know we've talked in the past. You said, there's been times where I wish I just stuck it out. But it's so interesting how everything is coming sort of full circle. I mean, the fact that, as you said, Susie is back on the radio, which is again, for her full circle. So I do want to bring it back just for that for a second, because I didn't ask that question when you were when you were talking, but it keeps repeating in my mind.



What was one of the biggest lessons that you learned from Susie that you kind of took away throughout your journey? That for women, it is a little bit harder in the sports industry and honestly, in the business world, there was a lot of things I remember back in my day, I was the only girl in the locker room. I really was. I was the only girl in the locker room. And I remember she told me, like, hey, you're probably going to be the only girl in there.



And these athletes, these players, they're just going to be going about their business because they're used to men being in there. So you're just going to have to look up.



Nicely. But I mean, there was a lot of things where I do feel that it was great to be the only woman in the room for a lot of these opportunities. But also at that time, I feel like my questions had to be a little bit better. My questions had to be a little bit more thought out. I had to really sit at the Rockies games.



A lot of the other post game reporters would show up in the 8th inning, look at the oh, okay. So and so had four hits, and I'm going to go talk to him. I'd go to the whole game. I'd actually keep score. I'd take notes as to like, okay, so he was swinging because it shows.



You like, okay, there's sliders. He got a bunch of sliders, and that's the one that he hit. Like, okay, so the slider came in why? When that slider came in the third inning. So I made sure that I was really crafting my messages or my questions throughout the entire game, whereas a lot of the other reporters that would come in just kind of would come in, and their questions were good, and they didn't have to worry about it.



Where I always felt being in that locker room, I was having to say, okay, I have to make sure that this is good. So I proved that I'm worth it to be here. I deserve to be here. And that was something that she was like, you're going to have to make sure that you show that you deserve to be there in these situations because, no offense, but nobody wants a girl there, right? And, you know, there's one beautiful thing that probably came out of that as well, because you could have had a mentor, right?



You listened to her on the radio. You could have had a mentor that wasn't willing to teach and help, right, or not mentor, like someone that you idolize and you're like, that's what I want to do. Yeah, she could have seen me as competition. She could have been, like, 100% you. Yeah.



But the fact that she did, she shows, obviously, what a beautiful soul she is and how good she is in her business, that she stayed in that business, right. So she knew, okay, this is what you need to do. But she pivoted. When radio happened, she happened to be in it for a little bit longer, so she was able to get a couple of steps up. But you pivoted, and you took this journey, and it's like, okay, let me kind of go down this path and see what that's happening.



And then you created your agency. I mean, take us through a little bit about how that came about. So I love that you were kind of always obviously a forward thinker. You're always seeing the bigger picture. And that's what I love.



And not saying that men are not because there are men that definitely see bigger pictures, but I think a lot of times when I'm speaking to women on this podcast in this situation, that's one thing that kind of comes over and over again. We're bigger thinkers. We see ahead, and we're not just thinking about them now. So when you were reaching out to these businesses, obviously you weren't thinking, oh, I'm going to start a social media company. But how did that start?



And you've been doing it now for many years. I know. I always feel really old when I say, I've been doing this whole social media thing for 18 years now, but I worked at the TV station and I had another great mentor there, and her name is Jen, and she was the marketing director and I was the marketing manager. So we worked really closely together. And really anything that I would present to her, she'd say, yeah, let's give it a try.



Yeah, I think that's a great idea. I'd say, hey, you know, I think that we should maybe try doing some Facebook ads. I know that we're doing these media buys with billboards and stuff. Let's just try some Facebook ads and see how they do. She's like, sure, if you think it's a good idea, let's go for it.



So she always was very supportive in any sort of things. I wanted to just try and experiment with on the social media side of things. And I'll never forget I was in her office. It was around maybe like probably October of 2016, and we were sitting in her office going over benefits, like, hey, which benefit package are you going to sign up for? So it was around that time of year, and her boss came in and grabbed her, and she's like, I'll come grab you later, Katie, I'll talk to you later.



And then all of a sudden, her boss came and grabbed me, and I was like, oh, hey. And he laid me off. And I was like, what do you mean? He's like, well, with the merger, the TV station was being acquired. He's like, with the merger, all marketing managers are going to be based out of Atlanta now.



And I was like, I know nothing about telecoms. Telecom. I don't know how to write scripts and do media buys and do social media. I don't know anything about that side of marketing, and I'm not moving to Atlanta. So you can choose to be like a laid off then.



And I was like, okay, that's what I'm doing, right? So about the next week, I had, I think, three weeks that I could continue passing off, like, my duties or whatever. And I was sitting in Jen's office and I was like, I just don't know what I'm going to do. And she said, well, Katie, you're so good at social media. The stuff that you've done with the station and the way that you've experimented with things and the way that you've really grown our presence, I'd love to see you do something with social media, and I would just love to see you find a way to get back into radio some way.



And I left her office and I was like, why not? She's right. I am really good at social media. That's my favorite part of my job. So when I had my final day there, I actually got my very first client.



I got it off of Upwork, and I just was doing her social media and I was like, well, I'm just going to see how this goes, because social media is the main job. Six years ago, it still was not just a main job. If it was like an entry level position, which I was beyond that phase of my life. And so I was like, well, let's just see what I can do. And it's been six years now, almost seven.



Wait, yeah, 2016. Yeah, six years. And I absolutely love what I do. And I've found a way to kind of get back in the radio with the podcasts, and I love what I'm doing. And honestly, if I didn't have Susie in the first phase of my career, if I didn't have Jen just giving me the idea and the confidence of being like, let's just see if I can do it, because I was trying to find different corporate jobs, but she was like, I would just love to see if you find a job where that's all you do.



Those words really hit home to me, and I was like, Why not? Why not? Let's just see how this goes. And now I have my agency, and like I said, I absolutely love what. I do every day, and I think that's so cool.



And that's, again, a message that not all of us think about and not all of us get, because not everyone gets a mentor that helps them. Not everyone gets a boss that's like, oh, let me be positive and let me see this person grow. I've had so many people on this show that it was complete opposite, right? They had bosses that were jealous of them or were nervous that they were going to take their place. But it's also what you put out your energy, the way you are, and you are I mean, we connected so quickly because you could just feel the love and the compassion that you have and the curiosity that really comes across.



And so what you're doing, you're going to get clients because they're okay, you know what? You're an expert in this field, but you're also a comfortable person, and I can see that you want me to succeed. It's not just a paycheck. And that comes across very much with you, that it's not about a paycheck. You're happy to help that next person get to where you are.



And even above, I can see you being a cheerleader on the side. So when people think, when people have a boss that is someone that kind of gives them that confidence, sometimes we take it for granted. And I want people to listen. Don't take it for granted. Don't take that support system that you have, whether it's a spouse, whether it's a best friend, whether it's a neighbor, whether it's a boss, don't take that person for granted.



Look for them to help you grow as a person in your business, because it really can happen. So six years. So you started with that first client. How fast did the business grow? Or was it a slow go?



It was a slogo because right after I got laid off, I found out I was pregnant with my second daughter. I was like, well, it's a good thing I decided to do this whole social media thing by myself for a bit because I don't know who'd want to hire me now. Like, thanks for hiring me, by the way, I'm pregnant. Right? So it was a slow go.



Honestly, it was the pandemic that I really decided to take my business and see where it could go. Because I was a solopreneur. It was just me doing all the things. I mean, I was even building websites for a while, so I was doing all the things. And it was around March of 2020, I went to Social Media Marketing World, and I was like, I've wanted a podcast forever.



Why am I not doing it? Is it because I don't own a microphone? Like, it's not that hard to order a microphone off of Amazon. So I really just took that time after I came back from Social Media Marketing World and was like, if this is what I want to do, I need to take the leap. I just need to just go for it.



I'm making money. I've got consistent clients, but I can't grow unless I hire somebody else, which is scary. I think hiring a first employee is absolutely one of the scary things, is like, okay, well, how am I going to afford to pay for them if this client goes away? Right? So I really started to go agency mode.



In April of 2020. I launched my podcast, Rocky Mountain Marketing. I hired my assistant. A few months later, I started contracting out the podcast production. All these things started happening.



And so it's honestly been only about two and a half years that I've had the agency side of the business, where now I have a copywriter, I have a designer, I have my assistant, I have a brand strategist, I have a website person, all these people coming in for the agency side. And that allows me to do things like half three podcasts. I speak at different events, like where I meet you and I connected. I speak at different events. Now.



I offer one on one coaching and consulting for teams now because I have the rest of my business built, but there's no way I could have left the TV station and gone into the mode I am now. The steps and the things that I've learned along the way absolutely have helped me grow my business. I feel the right way. Right? I love that.



And I totally apologize that I forgot Rocky Mountain Marketing in your podcast because that was your first podcast. Yeah, it's my solo podcast. The other two are I'm cohost on. So you and I connected because of across the pond NFL, because it's NFL. Of course we did.



We totally did. That's the very first podcast I launched. And man, if you want to listen to some terrible podcast and go back and listen to the first few episodes of those. But that's the thing. Sometimes I will listen to like, episode three and I'm like, oh my goodness, you can tell how nervous I was.



And now I listen. Oh, man. I love seeing the growth, really of me and my business journey and my professional journey. Well, and that's what's so cool and that is what is so exciting. And I think what holds people back is the fear of, oh, I'm going to be terrible in the beginning.



And you clearly whether this is going to be a second question, but you clearly got that confidence through your upbringing. And then as you entered the business world, people saw where your abilities were, what your God given strengths are, what you are meant to be doing in this world, and kind of helped you be like, no, here's the push. You can do this, you can do this. So I think it's so awesome when you talk to an entrepreneur like yourself and you feel that fearlessness. And I know you're going to be like, oh no, there's a lot of fear.



And so I don't mean Imposter Syndrome. Happens on a regular basis for the right hair. And I think it's good. I think it's good to have Imposter Syndrome because it allows you to keep yourself in check. It does.



But the fact that you get past it because people will let that hold them up and they never get to that next step, that next stop, whatever you want to say, but they never do because they let that fear, Impostor syndrome set in. So do you feel that your upbringing, your parents really gave you that confidence? Were you born with it? Like, did your parents ever say, oh, you were just born with it? My parents always tell me, they're like, oh my gosh, you came out confident and we couldn't hinder.



There was times you probably should have been so confident, but you were just going there. I do think that sports had a big impact on my life. I think that regardless of what sport it is, I think that there's something to be said about the mindset you need to have when you play sports, whether it's a team sport or an individual sport, like swimming or golf or whatever. And you can argue that those are team sports in a way. But I mean, the mindset that you need to have, you need to believe in yourself.



And if you just softball, you go up to the plate saying, oh my God, I'm going to strike out. I haven't been able to hit this girl all day. I am going to go up to the plate and I am going to strike out. What's going to happen? You're going to strike out.



You need to believe in yourself and have a very short memory so that you okay. Yeah, I struck out last two times. This is the time. Now I know what she's going to be feeding me. All of that, I think really helps it.



And it's interesting too, because I actually worked with a mindset coach and I was like, goodness gracious, I've played sports my whole life. Why? I should have a great mindset. I should know how to re approach myself when I'm feeling down or I'm feeling overwhelmed. But side note, I'm a huge fan of coaches.



Regardless in your life, whether it's a mindset or sales or social media or whatever, I think coaches can absolutely help you with your business. And I think that mindset is huge. And sports really helped my confidence because I was always trying to keep myself elevated so that I could help my team and so that I could be a better player. I caught 500 fly balls every day after school. My dad would take me out to the 500 fly balls because for a while there, I had a spring in my glove, you know, 500 fly balls every day.



And it was a lot of work, but I became a really good outfielder because of all that repetition. And if I would have just said, oh, I'm not any good at this, I can't catch the ball, and I would have given up, who knows what my life path would have been. I definitely would have been playing collegiate softball. But you have to believe in yourself. And I think that sports is a great way to build that confidence.



I do too. And there's going to be the person that's listening to this saying, well, I'm not athletic or I don't like sports, but there's so many different things. I was actually just talking to a woman that's a neighbor I was out in the street yesterday saying hi to a neighbor and this woman came up and our kids happen to be in school at the same time. And so I said, oh, you know, I don't know if I know do they any play sports? And she, no, they don't.



Well, my son is a triathlete and I said, well, okay, he doesn't play school sports. Yeah, and I don't preference by saying to people, is your child an athlete? The only reason why I say do they play sports? Because then I know, oh, wait, I do know them, or one of my children is going to know them. But you could tell she had this little bit of a chip on her shoulder like, oh, you're going to be that mom that's going to ask that.



But then when she said that, she goes, oh, I guess you're right, and she goes, yeah, he's ridden his bike like 100 miles. And I said, yeah, so he doesn't do school sports, but he's an athlete. I said, So, I don't know that maybe our kids have had classes, I said. And when I said that, she's like, you know, thank you for changing that wording, because I should say, no, he doesn't play sports, but he's an athlete. And it doesn't matter if you're not an athlete, if you're not into sports, there are things that you can do in your life.



Just like, as you said, with the mindset, stuff is go out of your comfort zone to do things. And that's what's so important when you go up to bat every time, it's out of your comfort zone. Whether you're the best hitter, the best catcher, it doesn't matter. When I played sports, it's the same sort of thing. I realized, okay, my speed, I might not be the best stick skills, I might not be the best this, but I am fast, and I will get every ball before everyone else because that was my gift, and I knew that and I was confident about it.



It didn't mean that every time a ball for Field Oculus lacrosse went out and I knew I was running because there's girls that were faster than me, but I knew that if I put that hustle and that grit and that grind that, that was going to take me to a different place. Like, she might be faster than me or she might have better stick skills than me, but I'm going to outwit her because I'm going to get every ground ball. And that's what I used to do in lacrosse. I used to just practice the ground balls because I knew I was gritty and I could get in there. So I think that is so important for anyone to think about that.



And I love that sports did that for you because it 100% did it for me, and I see it doing it for my kids now. And I think it is such an important thing whether you're the best on the field, the worst in the field, just go out and try it, because it's out of your comfort zone. When you go out of your comfort zone is when you learn. And I say that all the time to so many people that just stay when you stay in your comfort zone, there's no growing. So true.



And I know we're getting close to the end of the episode here, but I do just want to say, like, based off of where we're at with the conversation right now, my daughter Evelyn, she's eight and zero interest in the sport of baseball or softball up until about six weeks ago. I mean, really could have cared less. And we got my younger daughter Vivian a tea with a bat for her birthday because she actually was expressing an interest in it. Well, Evie started playing every day. She was like, let's go play catch.



Can you buy me a glove? Like, was all about it. So I signed her up for a softball league, and unfortunately, there's not a ton of beginner leagues for eight year olds. I mean, at eight years old, for crying out loud, it's competitive. And so I was like, well, she wants to play softball, I'll sign her up for this league, and we'll just see what she thinks.



Well, she went there, and I mean, the very first time that she went to the practice, she stood on home plate. So, I mean, that just goes to show you what her understanding of the game, like to swing the ball or swing the back. And so that's where she was. They're coming up to the final week of softball right now, and last week, she asked the coach, hey, can I try playing third base? Can I try playing pitcher?



I mean, it's coach pitch still, but the pitcher, you stand right next to the pitcher. She said, can I try playing pitcher? She's absolutely embraced the sport. And I remember at that first practice, after she stood on home plate and all the other girls had played before, knew what they were doing, they could throw the ball. She came over to me, she goes, mom, I changed my mind.



I don't want to do this anymore. And I said, let's just finish out the practice this week. If you don't like it, we don't ever have to do it again. And just seeing the growth and the confidence that she's had, I mean, she's still not the best player on the team, but she is out there, like, throwing the ball, like, up in the air, trying to catch it. She's next to the asking the coach, can I try playing pitcher?



And the confidence I've seen in her while playing the sport has been awesome because she's a very shy girl. She's not like her mom at all. She's very shy. She is the last one, she'll raise her hand, no one saw me, okay, I'll just be quiet and kind of back away. But it brought out a whole different side of her.



So I do think that no matter with sports, you don't need to be the best player on the field. But when you have sports around you and that team environment, it really can help your confidence grow, and it can help you as a person be willing to raise your hand and be willing to speak up. I love that. Oh, my God, I love that story so much because it is so true when you see a kid. My daughter was the same, and I know we're coming to the end here as well, but she started lacrosse late.



Even though I played in college, she was a gymnast. That's what she wanted to do forever, but she did start it. And I remember the first practice, I forgot to get her cleats because she was a gymnast, even though the boys had tons of cleats. I was like, oh, crap, honey, I don't have cleats for you. And she's like, I'm going to wear these.



And she had leggings or like jeggings. And we like went up to the coach and the coach was like, oh, hi, you know, thinking and this is these girls have been playing since kindergarten. She was starting in fourth grade and the coach was like, okay. And I could see her and I'm like, listen, I actually played. I just want to preface that.



She's a gymnast. She's going to be fine. I totally dropped the ball in all of this because I was like, oh, wait, crap. I need stuff for you that I didn't even think about. And she is now on a travel team blowing the world up and it's like the growth that she did.



But I remember she came home that first day and she was like, oh, my gosh, mom, these girls are really good. And I'm like, they've been playing for a long time. Like, this is going to be uncomfortable. But she was like, no, but I really like to coach and I want to continue. And it just as you said, it's a really important thing because it gives that child the confidence to know they can do something.



She might have turned around in three weeks and said, no, thank you. I don't want to do it. But I was the same. I'm like, you got to finish this out and then we'll see where it goes. So, Katie, I love again everything that you're doing.



We will be having Katie on Fireside and it will be sooner than later even. To dive into more what she does for her clients. More about what her podcast is about and maybe she'll even have a fifth podcast by the time we have our. Own fire and I have a problem. Then we have to actually sit me down and say.



Katie. You have a problem with podcasting. This is an intervention. You need to take a step back from the microphone. I don't know if I'm the correct person because I'm always constantly talking to people about starting new shows.



So I am definitely not the person to start that intervention. But Katie Brinkley, thank you so much for joining your next stop. And you guys know what to do, like rate review and you might be listening to this episode and saying, oh, this is really cool, but not thinking that it can fit into your life. But there's people in your life that need to hear this. They need to hear where Katie went in her life, where she pivoted, because they might be in a spot in their life right now where they're in crossroads.



And this story will help because what do I say every single time? Stories connect us. Stories make us better people when we listen to someone's story. So we will see you guys next week with your next stop. Thank you again so much, katie, I hope you liked this episode of Your Next Stop.



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