A Detourist looks for the upside of obstacles. A detourist follows that twisted path because they’re curious to see where it could lead.
A detourist travels along detours – simple enough. But in addition, a detourist embraces those unexpected routes asopportunities for growth, change and self-fulfillment. I am living proof that a detour can lead to unexpected blessings.
“Intentionally Wandering” might be the best podcast name ever – isn’t that what a “Detourist” does? I’m so excited to share with my fellow “Detourists” my talk with Jeff Sandquist, who runs this great podcast!
Not all wanderers are lost.
The Podcast by Jeff Sandquist. Check it out here.
Amy Oestreicher shares her journey and lessons learned along the way from thinking she had her whole life planned out to encountering a number of major detours starting in high school, including surviving sexual abuse from a trusted mentor, having her stomach explode and almost dying, enduring 27 surgeries, and not being able to eat or drink anything for 6 years, to becoming the thriving detourist she is today helping others to embrace, love, and trust their own beautiful detours. She discusses what being a detourist means, embracing, loving, and trusting your detour especially when it is hard, as well as the roles of creativity, art, and curiosity throughout the process.
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TOPICS & TIMESTAMPS:
- [1:45] Amy’s journey and big dots
- [13:15] Being a detourist
- [18:30] Loving your detour
- [21:40] Creativity and art
- [24:45] The role of curiosity
- [27:10] Amy’s Why
- [28:10] Connecting with Amy
- [31:10] Closing announcements
- “As a performer, I think I made meaning in my entire life by connecting with the world and giving back—performing was always how I found connection.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “I found ways to really be in society by creating—it gave me an identity and it also made me feel that I had power over a situation where I didn’t have any power at all. I think the most important thing, it helped me just get from day-to-day—I knew in my heart that I couldn’t think about the big picture, I just had to make it from day-to-day.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “I think we’ve all asked, why me, a lot in our lives—and I asked it for a really long time. The point where I was able to get to, why not—just that question—opened the awareness for me because it is all about mindset.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “I realized that when life takes a detour, by the nature of someone that just keeps going, you eventually pass all the pain and feeling like your life will never start again if you just keep going, and then you’ll just be left with the rewards of it.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “I started calling it a detour because I didn’t really fall into any category.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “I realized that even though my experience was very unique, the emotions that I experienced and faced, those are universal things.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “The important part of being a detourist is it takes the emphasis away from the uniqueness of what happened to you in a good way because sometimes I think we can get bogged down in feeling victimized—like no one can understand, no one can relate, that’s why I can’t get better. But I think we should be finding the uniqueness, not in the specific obstacle we’re dealing with, but what that obstacle forces us to do—I think that gives us the confidence and self-assuredness to move on from it.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “A lot of times we can cling to what happened to us because it becomes our identity, but if we focus on the uniqueness of the gifts we could get from it, then we’re forced to cling to all the good things that’s come out of adversity and that adversity just becomes a detour like everyone else’s. … Becoming like everyone else’s is not minimizing what you’ve been through, it’s actually making it stronger because it’s something we all have.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “One thing to keep in mind is, even as one detour is ending and you’ve finally found that meaning—and you’re able to say, oh, I see why that happened—another one could start right from there. Detours constantly keep us on our toes so we have to be in that ready position—not in a neurotic way, but life is full of obstacles and opportunities and we have to stay open to it.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “In the moment you don’t always love your detour and you don’t have to. What’s important is that all you have to do is show up and trust it.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “I fell into art accidentally. For me, all it was was a way to get my thoughts sorted out before I was actually able to speak them. I think creativity is a mindset—it gets us seeing situations in a different way—it also gives us a sense of control and power where there might not be something.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “I think that’s why art is such a cool thing, it’s all about having that child-like wonder and a fearlessness to make mistakes and work with them.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “Remember that fear is energy, and we have the power to transform energy into whatever we want. So take that fearful, really energetic pull in us that’s making our heart pound, and use it for some kind of creative good.” (Amy Oestreicher)
- “I do everything to feel alive—I had to be numb for many many years. … I realized the worst thing in the world is not feeling pain, the worst thing was just not feeling. Now whatever I do, I do it so I can feel alive, because now I realize that even though it’s a risk and sometimes it hurts, I would rather feel everything than nothing.” (Amy Oestreicher)
MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
- Website: Amy Oestreicher
- Support: Amy’s Patreon
- TEDx: Following Your Detour and Finding Your Flower
- Event: One Woman Musical Gutless and Grateful
- Blog: Why Not Wednesday
- Podcast: Episode 19 with Brett Henley
- Podcast: Episode 58 with Srini Rao
- Podcast: Unmistakable Creative – A Beautiful Detour with Amy Oestreicher
- Book: Courage to Heal by Ellen Bass and Laura Davis
- Book: Experience Curating by Joel Zaslofsky
- Website: Break the Twitch
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