EP 24: Leading With Visual Language featuring Social Entrepreneur and Author, Sunni Brown

podcast Apr 09, 2021


Our capacities are at an all-time low.

Between the pandemic and politics and injustice–not to mention our already overflowing lives and schedules–we have access to far fewer resources for staying calm, beating back anxiety, or holding space for others.

It’s in times like these that leaders like you need to know what trips you up--so you can take better care of yourself and continue to lead those who depend on you.

Knowing what trips you up requires a lot of curiosity and deep respect for feeling out of sorts, but so often, the message to keep cool and never let others see you struggle shuts down any curiosity about what is at the root of inner struggle.

Staying calm and showing up with care is exhausting--especially when the world is on fire. You don’t want to stop… but it’s tough!

Now, I know everyone is used to hearing about “triggers,” but I like to use a different term-- trailhead.

Trailheads, according to the founder of Internal Family Systems Dick Schwartz, are an emotion, image, inner voice, thought, physical sensation, or impulse that, when brought into focus and followed, often leads to a part of our inner system that is in distress.

Understanding our triggers and trailheads is a path to knowing ourselves better and provides us with direction on what we need to create and informs our body of work.

My guest today built an incredible career based on following her triggers and trailheads.

Sunni Brown is a social entrepreneur, best-selling author, story architect, and book coach.

Her TED Talk has drawn more than 1.5 million views and she is the author of Gamestorming and The Doodle Revolution, forthcoming book–Being Confident: In Any Situation and When it Matters Most.

Sunni has developed a company that has a powerful cultural impact on how we learn and work. She has started this movement based on the data offered from her own personal triggers and trailheads.

Sunni has redefined what it means to arrive as she deepens her awareness of her inner system.



Listen to the full episode to hear:

  • What the Doodle Revolution is and why is this type of visual learning so important
  • The impact doing this type of work has had on Sunni personally and what happened when she followed her rage
  • How she integrates Internal Family Systems into her visual and design work
  • And how to get curious and befriend your trailheads and triggers instead of shaming and exiling them

Learn more about Sunni Brown:

Learn more about Liisa Sorsa:

Learn more about Rebecca:



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