#347 What You Can Learn About Your Relationships from a Former Neo-Nazi | Shannon Foley Martinez
We’ve got a provocative but deeply practical episode today. All of us have people in our lives — whether it be our personal lives, our professional lives, or even just people we see on TV — with whom we disagree. So how can we coexist, or even reach a state of mutual understanding, with these people? It’s not an overstatement to say that your personal happiness, as well as the future of the planet, may rest in part in our collective ability to hone these skills.
My guest today has done this work in some of the most extreme ways imaginable. She is a reformed neo-Nazi by the name of Shannon Foley Martinez who now works to deradicalize extremists. She’s also a consultant at American University’s Polarization and Extremism Research and Innovation Lab. In this conversation, we talk about how she got into the white power movement, how she got out of it, her methods for de-radicalizing people who are still in the movement, how she applies those methods to more mundane conversations across the many lines of differences that run through our society—and how you can, too.
Just a quick note - you’ll hear some background noise, from a lawnmower and a barking dog— but that’s just the reality of recording podcasts in the middle of a pandemic. Also, as you might imagine, we hit on some pretty sensitive material here, including discussions of hate-fueled violence, racism, sexual assault, and homophobia.
We also want to deeply thank and recognize mental health professionals for your support. For a year's FREE access to the app and hundreds of meditations and resources visit: tenpercent.com/mentalhealth.
Where to find Shannon Foley Martinez online:
Other Resources Mentioned:
- American University’s Polarization and Extremism Research and Innovation Lab (PERIL)
- Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness
- Bryan Stevenson, author of Just Mercy
- Bill Doherty on the TPH Podcast
- Braver Angels
- Ten Percent Happier Live: https://tenpercent.com/live
- Coronavirus Sanity Guide: https://www.tenpercent.com/coronavirussanityguide
- Free App access for Frontline Workers: https://tenpercent.com/care
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One final item of business, and it is an invitation for you to participate in this show. In June, we’ll be launching a special series of podcast episodes focusing on anxiety, something I’m sure we’re all too familiar with. In this series, you’ll become intimately familiar with the mechanics of anxiety: how and why it shows up and what you may be doing to feed it.
And this is where you come in. We’d love to hear from you with your questions about anxiety that experts will answer during our anxiety series on the podcast. So whether you’re struggling with social anxiety, anxiety about re-entering the world post-Covid, or have any other questions about anxiety - we want to hear from you. To submit a question or share a reflection call (646) 883-8326 and leave us a voicemail. If you’re outside the United States, you can email us a voice memo file in mp3 format to email@example.com. The deadline for submissions is Friday, May 21st.