Michelle Chalfant | The Adult Chair | 308 – Bending Reality with Yemi Penn
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308 – Bending Reality with Yemi Penn

When we’re born into the world, we’re born into a set of assumptions and norms. When this is all we’ve known, we think this is just the way the world works — but what if it’s all just an illusion? What if there’s another way to live – outside of the status quo – and how can you manifest that life for yourself?


Yemi Penn calls this “bending reality,” and, no, she’s not talking about some kind of Star Wars-like force – she’s talking about questioning societal norms, thinking outside of the box for ourselves and removing what gets in the way of the life we want to live. After experiencing childhood trauma and a period of homelessness, Yemi decided it was up to her to transform her trauma and turn it into a gift. This led her to live all over the world, run four successful businesses, tell stories through books and documentaries and build a life inspiring others to overcome fear, find their power and grow into their potential.


In this episode, we discuss healing from trauma, how we can reframe our norms and preconceived ideas about life and four steps to radical change – first in our minds and then in our reality.


Listen to discover:


  • The definition of trauma
  • Methods that work well for healing trauma
  • What “bending reality” is and how to break out of the status quo
  • Four steps for radical change 
  • The role of ego and identity 
  • The power of suspending disbelief and seeing possibilities for your life


I love Yemi’s perspective because this isn’t pie-in-the-sky thinking or idealism. It’s grounded in science, authenticity and real-life experiences of overcoming trauma and failure in order to show that anything is possible. She is a phenomenal person with so much wisdom to share, and I hope this inspires you to live a bold life of connection, bravery and power.


What is a reality you would dream of for yourself if there were no societal conventions and expectations holding you back? What if you decided they didn’t matter? 


“I’m asking the question, ‘Can trauma be transformative?'” – Yemi Penn


“I think there’s so much wisdom in our own bodies that we haven’t even connected with.” – Yemi Penn


“We need to start trusting ourselves.” – Michelle Chalfant 


“Bending reality is almost removing yourself from the reality that we all appear to live in…It means not signing up for what we have been told is the only way to be.” – Yemi Penn


“Bending reality for me is beginning to learn how to dance with the fear of criticism.” – Yemi Penn 


“Pretend you were not in this version of reality and you were somebody else. Who would you need to be to make it happen?” – Yemi Penn


“The ego really puts us in these boxes and says, ‘No, you have to do it this way.'” – Michelle Chalfant 


“You can’t expect life to show up differently. You have to have radical change.” – Michelle Chalfant


“We have to subtract the fear from that innate power we have that most of us have forgotten.” – Yemi Penn





Yemi Penn Website 



Yemi Penn TED Talk



Yemi Penn Documentary



“Did You Get the Memo?” (Yemi Penn book)



Yemi Penn Facebook



Yemi Penn Instagram






The Adult Chair® Website



The Adult Chair® Membership



The Adult Chair® Workshop 



The Adult Chair® Coaching Certification






Instagram: @michelle.chalfant

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