Chingona Revolution is hosted by Erika Cruz, a rebel who left a 6-figure tech job to pursue her own unconventional path to success by following her passion that led to her purpose. Every week, Erika will bring out of you that BADASS LATINA through her experiences to overcome self-doubt and family expectations and lead with COURAGE.
If you identify as an introvert, this episode is for you. Many people come to me and tell me that it’s easy for me to get up and promote myself because I am extroverted and they can’t because they’re introverted. But that’s not true! You can achieve great things by unleashing the power of your voice as an introvert, and this week’s guest is here to help us do just that!
In 2019, Alejandra quit her job, stuffed a backpack half her size, and purchased a one-way ticket to Peru. After cycling through 5 career paths in 6 years, she decided to stop chasing and start soul searching. After her trip to Peru, she became an intern at the age of 27 and then broke into career coaching in January of 2020. Since then, she has helped increase their salaries between $10,000 – $40,000, get promoted into their first Manager or Director level role, change careers, quit toxic jobs, and feel confident as leaders at work. Alejandra is a first-gen Latina Leadership Coach on a mission to empower Latina professionals to get promoted into leadership roles, make more money, and feel confident. She is the Founder of the coaching business, empowHER change, and lives in Miami with her fine husband and perrito, Bentley Bear.
In this week’s episode, tells us how she unlocked the power of her inner introvert and how she helps her clients do the same. Over the years, she’s been able to pinpoint what is actually holding her back and how to move past them. Insecurity and cultural conditioning play a huge part in our everyday lives, and Alejandra teaches us how to work through these issues in order to be our most authentic selves.
How to work with Erika:
Sign up for the Courage Driven Latina Program here!
Erika: Hi, Alejandra. How are you?
Alejandra: I’m doing good, Erika. Feeling good, how are you?
Erika: I’m great. I’m super excited about our conversation because as I was telling you before we actually started recording, a lot of my clients consider themselves introverted, but they also want to create businesses and want to impact community.
And that’s been a big struggle for them. And being that you also identify as an introvert, I figured this would be an amazing conversation for us to have. But before we get into that juicy conversation, can you please tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do? Maybe if you can share some of your background, I know that you come from immigrant parents, but anything that you feel is relevant that you’d like to share.
Alejandra: Absolutely. Absolutely. So I just got a name change and recently married. So Alejandra Thompson is what I go by now. And I grew up in Maryland right outside of the Washington, D. C. Area grew up to two immigrant parents, immigrant household, very Colombian and really enjoy. And I also grew up in a very diverse place.
So Silver Spring, Maryland. I was on the borderline of Rockville Silver Spring. For those that are from the Montgomery County area, Silver Spring is, I think, top 10 In that realm of most diverse places. And so I grew up in an incredibly diverse place. And I mean, just I looked at my first-grade picture recently, and I was like, it’s the United Nations on here.
And so that was the type of environment that I grew up in and first generation American first generation to go off to college to work in corporate America. All of these different firsts for us that I know you are very familiar with. And the people listening to this are very familiar with. And with that, when I graduated, I had no idea what I wanted to do at all.
I wind up cycling through many, many different jobs until I landed on career coaching on accident. And when I landed on career coaching, I was like, my mind blew open. I had spent six years of like advertising PR. Admin operations, like all these different things. And I reached a point where I was like, I got to figure this out.
Accidentally fell into career coaching and fell in love and definitely being able to, you know, growing up. I was very shy growing up. I lacked a lot of confidence growing up. There was something, Erica, you said on a podcast that really resonated with me. It’s like, I didn’t think I was smart. I was a C grade student in high school.
I had to work really hard even to get the C’s and I just was not confident in myself. I didn’t think I was smart, introverted by nature. And we live in a society that tends to like really value extroverted qualities. And so I didn’t. Think that I had it in me to like be this like bold person that spoke up and things like that.
So I really struggled with that. And when I encountered career coaching, I was able to really enter a world where I could help on the tactical resume interview side. But then at that same time, I started to do personal development. work coaching on myself. And that really unlocked a lot of the things that I was saying about myself, that I was attaching to introversion, which is really actually insecurity and allowing me to build my confidence.
So these two things really like came together around the same time to really blow my mind away. And thankfully now I’m a leadership coach. So I have my own coaching business and I focus my work on Latinas. And I would say the vast majority of my clients are introverted. I’ve been like the vast majority and I don’t think it’s surprising because it’s like I am that.
And so I think we, as coaches, we tend to attract a lot of people who have some form of similar qualities. And so that’s been my work. I’ve been working with Latinas and helping them build their confidence, helping them speak up, helping them advocate for themselves at work, helping them negotiate the salary, quit the toxic job so that they can get more money so that they can have more impact in that.
So. They can rise in leadership roles because ultimately that’s what I really want to see. I want to see more Latinas in leadership. I want to see more Latinas thriving and feeling good about the work that they do. So that’s a little bit about me and where I am now.
Erika: Amazing. Thank you for sharing. So, you know, growing up, you mentioned that you were a shy kid and I think it’s so funny that you’re.
Like interpretation of what society expects of us is to be, extroverted, which I think is very true, but I think that’s also very true specifically for men, like when men are extroverted and outspoken, but I think also culturally we’re kind of conditioned to kind of be this like quiet and shy person because I felt bad for being so loud when I was younger because being Latina, right.
You know, we hear like, That, you know, those those things. so I’m curious growing up and being this like shy child, how did you come out of that? And how did you start to begin to build that confidence?
Alejandra: Yes. So one of the things that I pose as a question quite often is, are you being introverted or are you being insecure?
Because these are two separate things that we have Put together as one and they’re not the same so even considering shy Shyness is not the same as introverted many introverted people can be shy, but it’s not because it’s the same thing so shyness is more about like fear of negative judgment or just Being like small like you don’t want to be seen.
There’s like this fear of being seen while introverted is really just Desiring less stimulation is really what it comes down to Introverted is like when we prefer quieter spaces We prefer to be in spaces where we can either be alone or be next to someone who’s being quiet And so we just tend to like more quiet spaces and it’s really helpful for us to have that in order to recharge.
So going back to your question, yes, growing up shy, I think one of the biggest things that helped me overcome that was beginning to realize, oh, actually this has to do with Cultural conditioning with the fact that I was raised to be quiet and that’s the better thing to do. And there’s the element of gender like being a woman.
But I think the layer of being a daughter of immigrant parents is growing up with parents who had to be very fearful of being seen. My mom was undocumented for the first 10 years of her life. I grew up amongst many undocumented people. So there’s a very real. fear of being seen and just don’t rock the boat.
You don’t want to like get in trouble. You don’t want to do things that shine a light on you because maybe that will expose something else. And so I think there’s layers of it as being a woman, but also being a daughter of immigrant parents where that fear is instilled. And when I started to actually get coached and realize how much I was making myself small, I realized, oh, this doesn’t have to do with a thing that I am.
It is actually a reaction from how I was raised and from different traumas and different things that I heard and I could change that and I can change the way I think about that. And when I started to do that work and release that, naturally what was inside of me, the fire that was inside of me, the passions that were inside of me, the things I cared about that were inside of me were there the whole time.
And I was able to talk about them now because the fears. We’re beginning to have less of a stronghold on me. So it was kind of that type of process was discerning the difference and realizing it actually doesn’t have to do with that. It has to do with me being able to believe that I am safe to be seen and to speak.
And once that happened, leading with the things that I care about talking about.
Erika: That was so good. Especially the, you know, like, are you introverted or are you just insecure? Like that is huge. That was like a mic drop moment. I think you also touched on, not, I think I know, I know. Cause I was here. You said the fear of being seen, and this is literally the number one thing that I coach people on because I have a group program called Courage Driven Latina where people take action on a courage project.
And usually they execute this courage project through social media or maybe through in person networking. And that fear of being seen is so deeply embedded in us. And I think you brought up such a good point where if we grew up with parents who were undocumented, or maybe who, didn’t have, Access to the amount of resources or even language, right, which we have now, there’s, it makes so much sense that people try to close off and that our parents are, are, you know, not trying to be seen.
And that’s also why that narrative comes, comes up of. be humble, keep your head down and just work hard. Right? Like it makes so much sense that these are the narratives that we are taught. so tell me a little bit about, you mentioned that coaching and doing the inner work and really like recognizing some of these traumas is what helped you see the difference between this and just recognize what it is that you were taught so that you can then unlearn that or no longer carry that with you.
Tell me a little bit about your experience when you first were looking in. to invest in yourself, through coaching and maybe, because I think culturally when we are investing in an educate, like an education, formal education where you get a degree after it’s like, Oh yeah, do it. Right. It’s like fully supported.
Alejandra: valued. It’s like the number one thing you must do. Absolutely. But when
Erika: it comes to investing in a coach, and obviously both you and I are coaches, but we’ve also been coached and that’s also how we were exposed to the beauty of this work. So tell me a little bit around how you navigated that first investment.
Alejandra: Yes. So it’s so funny because I accidentally fell into career coaching and I also accidentally fell into personal development. So I wasn’t looking for personal development. What happened, what had happened was, I was, so my now husband, at this time, we had been, Dating for a few months and he is a coach and mind you, like I met him and I was like, this person’s like super motivational.
Like, like that’s, I didn’t know coaching. I didn’t know the world. I didn’t know the personal development world. So I was like, Oh, he just seems to be very motivational. And he also like trains people. So I was able to understand that. And we were dating for a little, a couple of months and he had a free pass to go do a training.
And right before that training was about to. start, they gave him a free pass. They were like, Hey, by the way, if there’s anyone you want to bring, feel free, you can bring someone. And we were sitting on the couch together. And so he looks over at me and he’s like, Hey, they just gave me a free pass to this thing.
Do you want to come? And I’m like, I mean, it’s my new boyfriend. I’m like, okay, sure. Like I have nothing else to do, whatever. So I go with him to this thing and it was a personal develop. It was a seminar. It was a personal development seminar for like three days and they had different parts for it. They had part one, part two, and part three.
And so I go in, you know, and I, and I know I was like, Oh, they’re giving this to me for free so that I can go pay for the rest. So I’m going in there a super, like already mindset, like, you’re not about to get me. So I’m like, you’re not about to get my money, right? They totally got my money. But, but at the end of that, like, because it was on accident, like I didn’t, I didn’t, I didn’t pay for that first one, but I was.
I was exposed to coaching and then in turn, I was exposed. to the things I was holding on to that were creating a lot of insecurities, that were holding on to a lot of the insecurities that I literally didn’t know I had. I had no idea. I had no clue. And so that’s one of the most beautiful things about coaching, is that we help people see things that they don’t see.
And that’s why it’s so helpful for us as coaches to even have coaches. So that was the moment, and at the end of that, they started doing the OK for Part 2, and I’m like a wreck. Because back to what you’re saying, like spending money, we all have different, our relationship with money. For me, it’s like you save everything.
You don’t spend a lot. You save everything because you don’t know what’s going to happen. And that’s it. Period. Like you don’t even, I didn’t even know investing it. I just had a bunch of money sitting in the savings account, making nothing on it. So that was it. I didn’t know. I didn’t know anything else.
So they start asking, I forgot what it was. I don’t know. Let’s just say 2, 000. I don’t remember what it was, but I was just like, what am I going to, and I’m over here like. freaking out. I’m like, am I gonna pay for this? I feel like I should. But then there was that part of me where it’s like, but what if it’s a mistake?
And what if it’s what if the next one isn’t even good? And what if it’s a scam? Oh, I thought that’s who Erica. I was like, what if there’s scam in me? And I just had so many thoughts about it. But ultimately, I had to really sit with myself and be like, Ale, do you want to keep exploring this? Do you want because I didn’t know what was gonna come on the other side But I was like, do you think this is gonna help and do you want to trust?
in your decision that no matter what happens, it’s worth it. And I think the trust is what was really hard for me. I had a lot of mistrust in myself and that could, I could make the right decisions for myself and that I didn’t have to delegate decision-making to someone else. And ultimately I did it, but I wanted to puke.
I wanted to throw up. My stomach felt awful when I made, when I swiped the card and I was like, I’m doing it. I felt ill, which is why I also say like. Just because you’re gonna invest in yourself doesn’t mean you’re gonna feel like excited and happy about it if you do awesome But if you don’t doesn’t mean it’s wrong and that was the thing that really helped me do it was to believe that I could Gain something out of it and ultimately ask myself like is this something that I think is gonna help me and if it is I’m willing to try it out because you’ve just learned so much about yourself that you didn’t even know.
So what could be on that other side? So I had to really build some Kurt, like what you’d Courage Driven Latina had to build a lot of courage because it was scary. I wasn’t confident. I was not confident, but I had courage and that is ultimately what helped me do it. Yeah,
Erika: and tell me a little bit about what came out of that, being that you were terrified whenever you swiped that card, but I’m sure that if that was free, you probably wouldn’t have taken it that seriously.
Like, how did, how did Ale show up to that container, being that you swiped that card for whatever amount it was?
Alejandra: Yes. So when we got to, well, the second in terms of when we got to the second part, I was so committed that I’m going to get something out of this because again, I’m like, I just paid this. I’m going to have to, something’s going to have to come out of this.
So I definitely went in committed. from that process to, because then you go from part two to part three. So it’s like, then you got to swipe your card again to move on to the next round and people will drop off. So there are, you can have a couple of people that you went from part one to part two to part three.
But most of the people, they’re like from different places because most people don’t go all the way through. And this is a side note, but I do think it’s so important to say, Erica, when I went from part one to part two to part three, I took no breaks. I didn’t say, Oh, maybe I’ll catch the next one, which many people did.
I was like, I got to keep this momentum going because I don’t know what’s going to happen if I stop. And let me tell you, Erica, I graduated from this program on March 5th of 2020. The world shut down March 15th, 2020. That business went out. And the people that said they were going to catch the next round never got the opportunity to finish the way that I was able to.
And that lesson has always stayed with me because I’m like, I was the last group to make it out in person the way that they designed it. And I gained so much from it. And I did it because I wasn’t willing to wait because I was willing to trust myself and I was willing to keep going in the work that was helping me.
So I really need to say that because that just was such a big lesson for me. But coming out of it, this program really exposed so much for me. A lot of it was around speaking up a lot of it. I’m introverted and this was a group type of thing and they would make us do group things. All my introverted people right now listening are like, oh no.
Yes, I would have to do group things, group things larger. It would be like 20, 30 people, and we would get into arguments because we wouldn’t agree on things. And I would shut down because it was too much for me. So it really allowed me to see how often I shut down because as introverted people, the shadow side can be like, Oh, I don’t need nobody.
I’m a loner, you know, I’m the black sheep or whatever it may be. We have a lot of ideas around being alone and we try to find comfort in that, but we’re not designed for that. And we need to really pay attention to where, that’s like a shadow versus our strength. And so this program really allowed me to see how much I was hiding, how much I didn’t think I was smart enough.
I didn’t think I was good enough. I didn’t think I was a good team player. I didn’t think that I compared to the other people on my team. And then other people, I thought I was like better than them. So I was like judging them. And it was just. A lot of the dark stuff that was in me just came up and I came out of it and I think one of the biggest things was finding that I do have a place even in a group.
I do have a voice and it makes an impact. People enjoy my presence and I get to celebrate that. And going out of that program is when I first had the voice. Go, I don’t think you want to be in a nine-to-five anymore. And I remember I heard that like it was in my head. I didn’t even say it out loud. And I got so scared.
I was like, no, no, no, no, no, no. We don’t want to do that. That program helped me to expose that inner desire that I had, that I wasn’t willing to even allow to the conscious mind. So it definitely brought up a lot and investing in myself is what got me there and continuing to do it and not put it on the back burner because of life things.
Erika: Two things I want to touch on. The first one is You said I didn’t wait and I think so many times people are like I’ll get DMS with like, oh, when’s the next round of courage driven at the now? when’s the next round of magnetic mastermind when’s the next time you’re doing this and you know, I I can’t force people to do anything, but it’s so crazy how They will delay because they think that by delaying, they’re going to feel more ready.
And the truth is you’re never going to feel fully ready. It requires courage to invest in yourself to get your point. And I have a client, who is in this round of Courage Driven Latina, who her courage project is starting up a lash business. So, lash and like microblading business and she obviously like, I’m not going to teach her how to do lashes or eyebrows because I don’t know how to do that.
But there was a course that she was going to take. So she asked for coaching. This just happened yesterday. So she asked for coaching and she was like, yeah, there’s this girl who, teaches a course and her next course is at the end of October. but she has a course that’s next week and she sent me a DM because I was asking her questions about it and the girl had set my client, a DM and was like, Hey, just so you know, somebody ended up, canceling their spot for the one that the course that’s happening next week.
So I can give it to you, at a discounted rate if you’re interested. And my client was like, yeah, but I don’t know if I should wait until the next one. And I was like, hold on. Why? Why would you wait? She was like, yeah, I don’t know. I was like, girl, if you join this round, by the time the next round comes, you could have already made your investment back.
Right. And I think people are just the, the delaying because they, they don’t want to deal with that discomfort that you felt when you were swiping your credit card or the discomfort that I felt when I made my first investment. But when you bet on yourself, there’s this level of self trust that comes with it, that she.
Is not like anything else. Like when you really begin to invest in yourself and, so yeah,
Alejandra: don’t delay. Is the fallacy. I really think because it really is a fallacy that we are going to feel more ready there when we’re going to be more ready. And I’ll say 0 percent of the people that have told me on a sales call that they’re going to do it in a few months, 0%.
have come back to do it in a few months because life will always get in the way. Life is always going to life. They doesn’t stop. And then I’ve had on the other end clients who were about to say no because they’re going to move or they’re getting married or there’s they’re moving cities, something going on.
But then they go, you know what though? I really want to do this, so I’m just going to do it and I’ll figure it out. Those people then, six months down the line, are nowhere where they could have even imagined they would be. Because they decided to say yes, despite getting married. Despite the fact that they’re moving.
Despite the fact that life is going to life. And that is one of the biggest things. It’s such a fallacy that we’re going to be ready at some point. Or the summer, like that’s another one. Oh, I’m going to wait until the summer ends and things like that. It’s like… There’s always going to be something else.
And so we have to be onto ourselves and like, what’s the thing that I want? Like the same thing with the program. Do what, do I want this? Okay. Yes. I’m scared. Okay, cool. I’m just going to have to. Feel scared and do it anyway. And that’s why that’s the part that I think is so important to identify It’s a fallacy that we think we’re going to be more ready is really anchor in are you avoiding something?
Are you trying not to feel discomfort because it’s not really going to happen It’s going to be scary if you’ve never invested in yourself. I still get scared and i’ve invested in myself Okay, so like it’s scary. It’s okay, but is it the right thing for you deep down? You know the answer to that?
Erika: Yeah, exactly and I want to be really clear that ale and I are talking about The importance of investing in yourself and things that feel aligned, right?
We’re not telling you what to invest in, but if you’re feeling called to something, this is, this is not like an ad, not even for my programs, right? Like we’re not telling you join Courage Driven Latina or that you have to work with Ale. You have to work with what’s aligned for you. But what we are telling you is don’t wait because your future self and your higher self they are betting on you.
Because they already know what’s possible for you. And this little moment of self-doubt that’s telling you, Oh, just wait till the next time. That’s fear speaking.
Alejandra: Yeah. Yeah.
Erika: So good. So good. Yeah. Okay. So the other thing that you mentioned that I think is so important is that you talked about how this program you joined brought up a lot of discomfort for you and it forced you to see essentially your shadows and the things that weren’t so fun to see.
And that is so valuable because our triggers are teachers, right? So whenever we are triggered, we are being taught something. And whenever it’s. I think a lot of people try to avoid discomfort at all costs. I mean, most people do. It’s a human, it’s human nature. But if you can get to this place where you’ve just described that you were seeing parts of yourself and having these realizations that you hadn’t had yet, and they were very uncomfortable, it took you facing them and recognizing them in order to get to the other side.
And I think a big part of investing in yourself is that it’s going to trigger you and it’s going to force you to see parts of yourself that you don’t like, but that’s necessary for growth. Would you agree?
Alejandra: Absolutely agree. It’s so important to be able to face that because they’re not going to be comfortable, but seeing them and then being able to have the support to process it.
Is the key thing that allows people to grow and this program what I feel like I just kind of got ejected into personal development like I didn’t ease in with books and then like do an online course. Like I went into something that was very experiential. It was in the moment like. My boyfriend at that time, now husband, he was a coach and had done a lot of reading, but even he was like, it’s different though, to actually be in it and have the things press, have the trigger press.
It’s one thing to speak on it in one moment, but to actually be in it and process it. So I think having the space where not only it could come up, but then having the support to process it, that was also a really key part.
Erika: Beautiful. I love it. Okay. So let’s switch gears a little. I had read on your story about how you didn’t think that you even wanted to get married, right?
But now we’re learning about Mr. Thompson.
Alejandra: So tell me a little
Erika: bit about, you know, what the resistance was and that transformation and kind of like where you are now.
Alejandra: Oh, gosh, this is a good story. Okay. My husband loves talking, loves talking about this one. He’ll tell me, he’s like, yeah, she didn’t want kids before me.
So this is, or get married too. So it was both. I didn’t want to get married or have kids. So, I didn’t want to have, I didn’t want to have kids or get married. I was especially adamant about the kids. I, if you ask anyone that knows me prior to like 27, they’ll tell you, Alejandra doesn’t like kids. Don’t ask her to take care of your kids.
Like she’s just not a fan of them. I didn’t like them and I never wanted to have my own and I, and then when it came to marriage, I was kind of like, not really like whatever, didn’t really, didn’t really care too much about it. Now I start dating my now husband and We were doing, I mean, he’s a coach and we were just, we were having a lot of, he was coaching me in some ways before I knew.
So we would have conversations and this conversation did come up. And I don’t think I was very honest with him about the fact that I. didn’t want kids. I think I maybe said something along the lines of like, I’m open to the idea of possibly, but the truth was, and I think actually, no, let me rewind. I actually do think I was getting to an age where I was like, maybe, but I don’t know what wound up happening is I had A revelation through doing this work, it was a moment where I had a revelation that my desire to not want to have kids or get married came from trauma.
It came from seeing my mom bust her butt, self-sacrifice, put herself last, stay in relationships she didn’t want to be in, all for the kids. off and get cheated on and I just grew up with that and I also grew up working class daughter of immigrant parents. So most of my friends were working-class children of immigrant parents.
So we, I grew up around a lot of like single parents or struggle, like just a lot of struggle, a lot of struggle with like finances and trying to make it and feel safe. And so I never actually witnessed. a marriage or a family that I aspire to. I love my mom and my mom put up with a lot and my mom sacrificed a lot for us to have stability.
And so I, once I made that connection, it was like, there’s been few things in my life that have been Such a breakthrough that it’s literally a 180 like most things in my life I’ve like had a breakthrough but then I work on it and work on it and work on it and see progress over time This was one of those where it was a breakthrough and it was a 180 I was like it’s rooted in trauma and it doesn’t need to be mine and it completely broke off of me.
I was like, I can have a family. I can have kids. We can be a unit and we can have something that I haven’t particularly seen before, but we can have that. And that’s really what broke it for me. I had that moment where I, I didn’t my whole, like my whole adult adolescent adult life. I just would say, I don’t want to have kids.
I don’t want to have kids. I don’t want to have kids. And so much of our trauma shows up like that. I’m just like that. I just, Oh, I’m just a loner. That’s just how I am. We just say things and a lot of times those things are rooted in trauma. And if we could see that we could heal that and then we can move past that.
Erika: That is so good. Yeah. It’s almost like we’re taught or our experiences have. given us an identity to attach to and sometimes we don’t recognize that we get to consciously choose what identity we want and you know, just like you said, Oh, I, I’m a loner or, you know, like we are identifying as that type of person when we get to choose which identity we want to embody.
And yeah, to your point, you can’t change something that you’re not. So yeah, that must’ve been a, like huge, I can imagine just like a mental breakdown as it
Alejandra: blew my mind, Erica. I was like, why it’s like, it blew my mind. I was like, I can’t like, yes, this makes perfect sense. Of course. Why would I aspire to that?
I’ve seen so many single moms. Why would I aspire to that? I think I was like. 18 or 19 before I learned that people had kids on purpose. No lie. I didn’t understand the concept of that. Like, you’re laughing. I’m so serious. I was like, oh, people do this on purpose. I didn’t know that because so many of, again, my friends were like, yeah, it’s got pre, oops.
And I went to, I went, the high school that I went to, we had at least like, I at least saw five to six teenage girls get pregnant in high school. I didn’t associate that with like planning and excitement and, and joy. And so that was so foreign to me. And even my mom had me at 22, like 21, 22. So even I remember this was in high school.
My friend told me that. His mom was like, Oh my gosh, I think he said his mom was like, I don’t know, like 45 or something. I just remember like, it just blurred. She’s old. It just blurted out of my mouth. And it’s like, that’s the world. It’s just like, I came from a world where people accidentally had kids young and then it was a hard life.
So of course, so that was a huge breakthrough moment for me. Yes.
Erika: Yeah. So tell me a little bit about how have you, and feel free to share anything that you feel like sharing, but being that you had, cause I can relate to this a lot. Like the examples that I had growing up of relationships were not healthy relationships.
And, I always wondered why I was so such a fan of like the breakup songs. And my cousins were like, Had their, you know, wedding and they’re on their vision boards. And like, I never had that, but their parents to this day are still together. I’m like amicable and my parents literally have not spoken since they split up.
And so the, the examples that we had of love were very different. So I’m just curious, being that you grew up with an example. of love that maybe wasn’t the type of love that you wanted to have in your own life with your partner. How have you been able to make that conscious decision in your relationship now to build the type of relationship that you want?
Alejandra: Yes. Oh, this is a really good question. And my husband and I got married April 30th. So this is something I’m currently still like, how am I going to do this? So what I would say is leading up to it because, there’s been a big shift in my journey and my spiritual journey this year where I’ve been really working on my relationship with God.
So there’s also been a big shift this year as I go into this. marriage and a big thing that I’m seeing that shift go into. Like before I was really focused on like healing myself and how do I communicate and how do I speak up and how do I ask for what I need and how do I say that that bothered me?
Like just all these things, like I was working a lot on and I still am, but I was like, I was focused. on myself primarily and really only. And now as I go into this year and I’ve been building my relationship with God and I got married, I’m really focusing my work on relationship with God in prayer, asking for healing, asking for guidance, asking for like how, how allow me to show like in the Bible, it says that to become one I’m like, help me understand that God.
Cause I don’t. I still see me as me. I still see him as him and he pissing me off and he’s doing that and blah, blah, blah. And I’m like, help me. Like I asked for so much help. So a lot right now, and this is, again, new as we’ve just recently got married. It’s, I’m asking for a lot of help in my building of my relationship with God.
And that has been incredibly healing. And. He’s been showing me a lot about myself and things that I get to heal to be a better wife. And the other thing is I have been watching content of couples that have been together for a long time. So I have now people like, you know, these people that are online that create courses, or they may just be married for a long time and they have like a YouTube and sometimes they’ll talk about their relationship.
I will listen to them. And I have a lot in the content that I’m consuming because I didn’t have that growing up. And so I get to seek that out. And I have also told my husband again, going back to like speaking up and using the power of your voice. I told my husband like, I would love for us to have more older married people in our lives because he doesn’t come from an intact home either.
I don’t come from an intact home. His mother has passed. My father has passed. So we’re also missing just. elders. I’m my grandparents. I never had a close relationship with because they live in Colombia and my grandfather’s already passed. So we’re missing elders and we’re missing intact marriages that are example.
So I’ve been seeking that in other ways through people online. A lot of like christian married couples have been together for like 2030 years. And so I’ll listen to them and also prayer. Those two things have been really big for me.
Erika: Yeah, thank you for sharing that. So there was You know, one of the things that stood out to me as you were talking about, being in this relationship or in this marriage, relationships are mirrors, right?
Where like, I’m sure you’ve learned so much about yourself through being in this relationship.
Alejandra: Yes, yes, absolutely. I think they are mirrors. They are. I think romantic relationships like the person that you decide to spend your life with are the people that will really trigger you the most. And it’s not because it’s not necessarily because they’re bad.
There are definitely abusive relationships and people that are doing things that are harming others, but it’s just the closeness, the proximity,
the intimacy that it is, how close it is, that closeness requires a level of vulnerability, and then that vulnerability exposes, and so there’s a lot of triggering that happens in romantic relationships, and I’ve seen I’ve seen this commonly When I’ve done this is actually just a question I’ve been posing to myself because I’ve been in spiritual communities or like people that are in the personal development, like spiritual space, and I’ve noticed that there’s a pattern I’m seeing where there’s.
A lot of talk about being spiritual and like the way that you act with people, but a lot of them, or I know a lot of them is me adding in things. That’s not true. I’ve noticed a few people that I know where I’m like, I don’t get it though. They can’t hold a relationship. But I’m like, but they do so much work and they’re like, they’re always about this.
And I started to just be curious about it because at first I was judgmental. That’s like a big thing I have to work on that God’s working on me on. But then I got curious and I was like, Oh, it’s because you can do a lot of work on your own. But when you get yourself someone, a romantic partner, it’s a mirror.
that you can’t escape unless you literally end the thing. And so it is a mirror and it requires a lot. It requires vulnerability. It requires an openness and a willingness to be able to want to work through those things. And that definitely, was incredibly challenging for me in the beginning where I.
Didn’t feel worthy of my husband. I thought that he was like better than me. And I didn’t think that he would want to be with me and I had to like work, but that was a lot of triggers, a lot of triggers, male abandonment was a big wound of mine still is. And I have to work on it. I still is. And that was a big trigger.
I was like, he’s going to leave. He’s not going to want to stay with me. And it was this program that I did was so powerful because we did it together. And it brought up so much early in the, we had been together for like six months and it was like this and this and this and that, like all these things we were bringing from like our parents and our childhoods, we like came face to face with it in that moment.
And I think having that program structure helped us to talk through it and help us to get a lot of that in. I wouldn’t say out of the way, but just bring it up earlier on to have some type of comfortability talking about that moving forward. So yes, they’re incredibly triggering, but they’re incredibly rewarding.
And I think there’s so much growth when you find a person that you know is right for you work through those things. If you know that person’s right for you and they’re good for you and they’re a good person, nothing’s gone wrong if you feel triggered. That’s just what happens. That’s part of the game.
And it’s a great way. I think God places these people in our life specifically so that we can work through them.
Erika: Yeah. It’s so funny. I think business, like being an entrepreneur and relationships are the biggest triggers, right? Like your business will make you look at parts of yourself that you do not want to see.
It will expose your, your deepest wounds and It’ll require you to show what vulnerably and courageously. Yeah. So the last kind of topic I wanted to talk to you about is about stepping into your feminine energy. Oh, okay. So, I heard you talk about, you know, this is something that I’ve really been focusing on a lot.
This is something that I’ve been focusing a lot on lately, especially with my new program Magnetic Mastermind, which is all about helping women go from like being in hustle mode to like stepping more into like femininity and feminine energy. So we obviously live in a society where Hustle and doing is very valued, right?
But, but feminine energy is more about receiving and being. And, that’s not looked at as something as valuable, but the truth is that we need both because that’s where creation comes from, from like both feminine and masculine energy. So have you found yourself like really in hustle mode at some point and transitioned into bringing in some feminine energy into your life and business?
And if so, how,
Alejandra: yes. I absolutely in business. It’s been the hardest for me to bring into business because entrepreneurship where, and we, we live in a context where it is very masculine, hyper-masculine you’re doing your go-getter. You got to keep it. And even just like, even thinking about, The way that we’re supposed to grow and scale and keep, it’s just like constant.
And so I do find it to be the most difficult in my business. And again, there are certain things that for me personally, personal development. In the more like, I think traditional sense that we see it wasn’t really helping me in a way that like walking with God was able has been peeling off of for me.
And so that’s even been interesting to even see that process for me happen. So when I started my business. I’m wired to work, work, work, work, work, work. Like, that’s just my default. That’s the way that it works within me. And so I remember this moment where Mike, this was a coach that I had at the time. She was just like, she just straight up was like, you have no clients.
Like, why are you working this hard? She was just like straight up with me. And I was like, because I’m supposed to, like, I didn’t know anything else. And so one of the things that I started to do first with femininity. Is I started to actually take into account my cycle, my menstrual cycle and look at the different phases.
And when I learned about that, that’s a whole different podcast. And I actually have talked about on a different podcast, but that’s a whole different thing. When I actually learned about that, I was like, okay, I was taking more of that like logical, still kind of masculine, but like logical sense. I was like, okay, I’ll add in more like rest days here.
And I was beginning that process and that was really helping me. But fast forward, I still found myself working hard, overworking, but overworking. It wasn’t just working hard, it was overworking. I was always stressed. I always had to do something. And as I started to walk in relationship with God, I realized it was really tied to scarcity and just not feeling safe to rest.
Because Everything’s like, I’ll just lose everything. And it doesn’t make sense, but it doesn’t have to, because that’s the thing about like trauma and conditioning. It’s like, it doesn’t always make sense. We can logically understand that we’re qualified for a job and not apply for it because we don’t think we’re good enough.
Like that is a very real thing. And so once I started walking with God, he was like, you don’t trust that I can actually provide for you. Like, you don’t trust that you’ll be okay. And I was like, Okay. So now over the past six months, this is actually, it’s so funny you asked that because this is really something that I’m starting to see a lot of strides in the last six months.
And even in the past three months, I’ll actually share on the past month, my church did 21 days of prayer and fasting. And so you’ll, similar to Lent, you’ll like give up something and then you’ll have extra time for like prayer. And so what I gave up was. All social media outside of LinkedIn. So I took off Instagram, I took off TikTok, I took off, I said I’m not gonna watch any YouTube clips, like, none of those things.
And as I was preparing for this fast, I kept asking, like, Okay, is that it? Like, God, like, what, what? And then I, like, what came through is, like, remove WhatsApp from your phone. That’s where I communicate with my clients. They’re like, you could, you can check that. On your desktop twice a day, like remove it from your phone.
And I was like, okay, so I was like, all right. And then the last thing I almost thought I was like, God, that’s a little too much. I like got a little bit frustrated. Remove your email from your phone. He’s like, you don’t need your email on your phone. You can you can remove it and you’ll you’ll check your emails throughout the day on your desktop and you can just spend an hour on LinkedIn a day.
Engage, post your content. That’s where I primarily, host my community is on LinkedIn. So I’m going into this fast and I’m like, okay, so I took all these apps off. Slack is off my phone. WhatsApp, LinkedIn, Tik TOK, Instagram, all of these things are off my phone. I’m only doing this. And that was just this past month.
And that has truly, I’m still integrating that fast because I really started to see. You overwork yourself, like you check in your email, all types of times in the day, it’s mostly spam. Like you, you don’t even need to be doing that. You’re checking WhatsApp all the time. And then you’re in these group chats that you don’t even want to be in.
And then you’re on Slack. And then you’re in like, I’m constantly ding, ding, ding, like my head’s just constantly getting more information, more information, more information. And so this past month has been actually a really big transition where I. This past month, I was like, I did a lot, but I don’t feel like I’m overworked.
Like, I feel like I, I didn’t, and that’s what it is. I’m actually, he’s helping me be more feminine, release, like not be so attached to overwork. And being okay with that and trusting that I’m going to be safe and trusting that I’m going to be okay, even if I don’t work super hard. So that’s been the biggest, that’s been the newest thing that’s absolutely been a journey for me.
And that’s still in progress right now. Full transparency is still in progress right now, but that’s been a huge step. I can, I can feel the huge stuff that I’ve had not always being on and trusting that. No one’s your clients. No one’s going to leave you because you didn’t check your email five times 20 times a day.
Like it’s going to be okay. But those things didn’t feel true until I, I gave it up in a fast. Yeah,
Erika: that’s so, that’s so interesting. And the cycle syncing that you brought up, this is actually one of the main things that I’m helping my clients with inside of the mastermind that I’ve launched. We’re looking at cycle syncing.
so like when using your period alongside your business so that you could work it the most. productive so you can work during your most productive weeks and also intentionally rest whenever you’re not, in those high energy weeks because running your business alongside your period cycle is a game changer.
Like it has completely changed my life. So. love that you talked about that. And also just knowing that like the fem, the, the female body works differently. Right. We don’t have a 24 hour clock. We have a month cycle when it, when it comes to our energy. But, I also released a podcast episode about hustle versus discipline.
And where I talk about how, like at the root of hustle, it’s essentially scarcity, which is exactly what you’re saying, right. Where we feel like there’s not enough and we have to keep going. And I think culturally this is so embedded in us. Right. Scarcity is so embedded in our culture and also the value of hard work and working hard and that’s just looked at as such a, as such a, something that’s.
That’s celebrated, but then we look at, you know, our elders and they’re, they’re physically exhausted. Like they’ve wore their bodies out completely. And my mom still to this day works a labor intensive job and so does my dad. And like they’re at retirement age, yet they’re still doing yard work and cleaning houses.
And, you know, we don’t see people that are wealthy. Working that hard, right? So it’s not necessarily that hard work equals wealth or abundance, but it’s our mindset around it. So I think both men and women in today’s society can really lean more into that feminine energy and being. And as before we were recording, I mentioned to you that I had just come back from a retreat in Sedona and it was a breath work.
It was a spiritual retreat, but it was like a lot of breath, work and meditation and rituals and releasing and letting go. And I was hardly on my phone. And when I came back this week. I had to easy in back into my phone and I’ve just found myself putting my phone on airplane mode more than I had ever done before.
And it’s allowed me to finish the things that I’ve started. It’s so crazy how we live in such a distracted. time where we’ll get started on something and then we’ll get distracted by a notification and then we go and do that and we never actually finish what we’re doing. Like we’re living in such a distracted time, but going to that retreat and coming back, which, you know, it was a, it was a five day retreat, but.
Pretty much the same thing as you where I was taking a fast from a lot of these different things and I felt a shift. I felt a huge, huge shift. So yeah, thank
Alejandra: you so much. Because even when you go back to it, I don’t know if you experienced this, but, I’ve still don’t have the apps on, but I, I downloaded Instagram because I’m speaking at an event tomorrow.
And so I wanted to promote it. So I was like, I downloaded it to like reshare things to my story. And even as I was on it, like. My spirit was disturbed. I was like, I don’t want to be here. Like, I was just posting it, engaging. I did a video to say hello. But there was, there’s a sensitivity that increases when you give yourself the space to be in your feminine.
There’s a sensitivity that increases to allow you to Embrace that more and more. And so I do think that there’s levels to it. And I don’t think there’s, there’s nothing wrong with anyone who’s listening to this and it’s like, I struggle with like, yes, it’s a big struggle when we come from a background where working hard and then growing up with people, working hard, not only working hard, but like scarcity, financial scarcity, physical labor, those types of things.
It’s. It’s nothing has gone wrong. You’re not broken in any way. And there is a way to be able to work through those things because it is essentially, it’s a rewiring of our mindset of our nervous system. And that takes some work to be able to do. So I’m glad you’re doing cycle syncing in your mastermind.
Cause that, that was a first step for me for sure, to start implementing that. And even like podcasts, like I’ll look at my calendar and I’ll make sure I’ll see where I’m at before I’m booking something. So I do take that into consideration and it is a game changer.
Erika: Yeah, and obviously like you have a speaking engagement tomorrow.
You can’t be like, Oh, I’m not ovulating. I’m not going to speak. But when you know, Oh, this is my lower energy week. Like I should take it easier around. You can prepare for it. It’s almost like when you check the weather and you know, it’s going to be raining. You could bring an umbrella. It doesn’t mean you just don’t go.
Right. Or you can just take the precautions, but just the awareness of like. Even, you know, the week before your period when it’s like the self critic week and the, the, when we’re low on energy and just, we can be really mean to ourselves, even just knowing like, why am I, why am I being so mean to myself?
Oh, it’s the week before my period. It’s almost like a, ah, okay. That makes sense. Right. It’s okay. A little bit more of a break. But, this has been such an insightful conversation. We’ve touched on so many amazing topics from being introverted, to investing in yourself, to putting yourself first, to relationships, to triggers, to feminine energy.
So where can people connect with you and find you?
Alejandra: Yes, on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is where I’m popping. It’s where my community is. So you can find me on LinkedIn. I’m Alejandra Thompson. So my LinkedIn is LinkedIn slash A L E Thompson. That’s where you can find me. And, I do. Can we touch on one thing, Erica, before we head out?
Okay. So one of the things that you mentioned beforehand was, really enjoying like me being introverted because you’re extroverted and you have introverted clients and they’re like, okay, but that’s you Erica. And I really wanted to kind of highlight even just a little bit about my own journey for anyone who is listening and they’re like, but I’m introverted and I don’t like speaking and I don’t like showing my face and I don’t like networking and all these different things.
I don’t like being seen one. I think going back to like the beginning is really identifying. Is this really coming from introverted or is this coming from insecurity? And when I started my own journey. I became a business owner. I became an entrepreneur. And like Erica said, that was another thing that brought up a lot of my triggers.
So I was like, Oh, so now I have to speak and I have to show my face and I have to say, it’s, it’s me, it’s my program. And that was really difficult for me. And that’s when I started to work on unleashing the power of my voice as an introvert. What I always encourage introverts is to start small. like, I’m speaking on a panel in person. That’s not where I started. I started with like posting a video on my Instagram story talking about me Leaving my job and starting my own coaching business. And then I started to do more videos that were like reels. And then I did a webinar. And then from there I just continued to grow and grow and grow in this.
I joined a Toastmasters. And that’s like a group that’s meant to help you with your public speaking. So I joined a Toastmasters group and I did like a one minute presentation. And sometimes I would, one time I recorded myself and I shared it with my friends. Like friends that I trust and was like, Hey, can you give me feedback on this?
I went, my husband has a podcast. I went on his podcast because I know I feel safe. This is someone it’s. He’s right there with me. I feel safe. It’s a, it’s uncomfortable, but it’s, I can reach that. And then I started doing podcasts on strangers podcasts. So I want to tell anyone right now that feels like, but I can’t do that.
It’s like, if you want, you don’t have to unleash the power of your voice, but I think if you’re listening to Erica’s podcast, you want to. So if you do understand that it has nothing to do with you being introverted, It has to do with probably insecurities of being seen and you can process those things with the help of therapy and coaching and spirituality and books and God.
There’s many different ways that you can take and then start small and keep building your way. It’s gonna require courage. You’re not gonna feel confident the first time you do it, and that’s okay. But I’m only able to speak on the panel because I’ve been willing to have the courage to speak on panels even when I was like sweaty palms, trying to remain calm, just breathing and breathing and breathing and going over the questions over and over and over again.
So I just really wanted to share that because it doesn’t have to do with whether you’re extroverted or not. With that being said, you want to take into account being introverted the same way like your cycle. Like… Erica, you just said, if it is, for example, like, let’s say there’s a speaking engagement and it is like the day before my period, I can decide to do it.
But then I. schedule out my day in a way where I’m not going to take any other calls that day. I’m not going to do any other things. Maybe I’m going to have a bath. So same thing. If you’re introverted and you’re going to go to like a big event and go network, make sure you bake in some time to be on your own.
Make sure you have a practice that helps you feel grounded. Add in things to help you because being introverted is really just like We’re more sensitive to stimulation, which is why like a lot of people, a lot of crowds, a lot of like talking can drain us. That’s all it means, which means get yourself to a place where you can have less stimulation and recharge.
So I just wanted to add that because it is, I’m really passionate about that. Like just because you’re introverted, doesn’t mean you can’t shine. Doesn’t mean you can’t be bold. Mother Teresa was an introvert. Oprah Winfrey is an introvert. Rene Brown is an introvert. Like, we’ve got powerhouses of introverts and you can be one too.
Erika: Love it. Thank you so much for, for adding that because I think it’s so important and you know, me who identify as an extrovert, which honestly after the pandemic, I don’t even know. I like my alone time, but I still get terrified. I mean, I told you I’m speaking at an event in Miami at the end of the month.
And I am terrified. I’m like, what if I say somebody’s name wrong on this panel? Like it’s just, there’s so many, yeah, like I still get scared, but you’re right. The breathing and the little steps help you prepare for the bigger things. So thank you for adding that so people can find you on LinkedIn. where else?
Alejandra: LinkedIn, you can go to my website, empowherchange. com. So it’s empowerher, E M P O W H E R. com. So empowerherchange. com. That’s where you can find me. Those would be the biggest things. Empowerchange is also my Instagram, but I low key don’t be on there. So just connect with me on LinkedIn. That’s where I’ll spend my time.
And yeah. That’s that’s where you can find me.
Erika: Perfect. And we will have all those links down below because you already shared those with us. So Ale, thank you so, so much for being on. I hope you have a fabulous, fabulous day and hopefully we will cross paths when I’m in Miami. Absolutely. Thank you, Erica.