Reboot Podcast Episode #97 – An Act of Grace – with Grace Belangia

The Reboot podcast showcases the heart and soul, the wins and losses, the ups and downs of startup leadership. On the show, Entrepreneurs, CEO’s, and Startup Leaders discuss with Jerry Colonna the emotional and psychological challenges they face daily as leaders.

Episode 97 // January 24, 2019


Grace Belangia

Grace Belangia

Executive Director of

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Episode Description

For many leaders, particularly entrepreneurs striving to build a vision, the experience of rejection hits close to home; oftentimes, it can feel as though there’s been a dismissal of our very soul. When faced with the fallout of rejection our initial response may be to thicken our skin or steel our reserve, building a wall behind which we suppress our sadness, our hurt, our tender selves. However, for all of us, another opportunity exists, one of compassion but also of strength; the opportunity to meet rejection as a warrior.

On this episode of the podcast, Jerry is joined by Grace Belangia, Community Development Strategist for CONima and the Executive Director and Founding Member of the Clubhouse, a collaborative and innovative community for entrepreneurs. This past fall, Grace reached out the Reboot Podcast looking for support navigating her feelings around rejection. In this conversation, Jerry works with Grace to uncover to the root of her fears about rejection and how its threat may actually be the driving force that allowed her to discover her life’s passions.

With Jerry’s guidance, Grace is encouraged to take an open-hearted stance toward rejection and reminded that standing as a warrior requires that we release ourselves from the notion that our self-worth is tied to the acceptance of people we deem powerful and influential. Jerry affirms that as we exist, we are lovable and whole, regardless of our perceived failures, and that ultimately, we, and we alone, hold the to key to determining our worth and belonging.

Grace Belangia on Twitter

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Show Highlights

Top Quotes:

“We all have this sense of I’m failing and it doesn’t matter if the public forward facing-ness makes you look like you’re the rockstar or you’ve got it all together. And in reality, I think we’re all struggling in some way.” – Grace Belangia

“Those failures, you know, they pile up, and they start to make you feel like you’re inadequate, or that you don’t really have your shit together. The imposter syndrome kicks in big time.” – Grace Belangia

“Everybody’s got a gift. Everybody’s got a story. Everybody has significance on this Earth.” – Grace Belangia

“Part of the languaging that I heard here is that there’s a wish that those people would be heard. Which, in that jiu-jitsu move that we can often do, might also be a reflection of the wish of ourselves to be heard.” – Jerry Colonna

“When was Grace told to shut up and so, therefore, she shut down? “ – Jerry Colonna

“Bravery is a strength. But so is the ability to have your heart broken.” – Jerry Colonna

“The ability to have your heart broken implies an ability to feel empathetic connection, meaning I can touch into the pain that I have experienced so that I can compassionately be with someone else’s pain. Compassion means to be with feelings.” – Jerry Colonna

“The problem is that your own self-definition of worthiness is linked to whether or not the people of power and influence agree and support the idea.” – Jerry Colonna

“The fear of abandonment is a fear that we will not find a place where we belong.” – Jerry Colonna

“The only person who has such profound, persistent capacity to reject the essence of you is you. The only person who can put you in a position where your DNA is fundamentally, completely and totally annihilated is you. So the powers that be, as you referenced, those with influence and power to decide whether or not you are worthy or you belong, is you.” – Jerry Colonna