The Insurance Dudes are back with another exciting episode and this time, their guest, Antonia Bowring, is an executive coach, strategic facilitator, and a one-time standup comedian. So best believe this episode will have you laughing but also learning!
The conversation starts with Antonia going into details regarding her coaching career, and some core rules regarding coaching she believes in. but then the conversation flows into the topic of ADHD, and from there, both the hosts and Antonia end up sharing their personal experiences and their ways of dealing with life and work with ADHD. If you have relatable stories or signs of a life with ADHD, this episode is for you!
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Bio of Antonia Bowring
Antonia Bowring is a highly credentialed executive coach, consultant, and strategic facilitator with comprehensive experience in early-stage, nonprofit and corporate settings. She has earned the reputation as a candid coach and an objective sounding board to executives and founders.
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Craig Pretzinger & Jason Feltman
The Insurance Dudes
the wildest thing that ever happened to me when working this was a while back, I worked for an international organization that helped women in microfinance. And we had a big conference in Italy. That's important. We had leaders from all over the world, including, like from Africa, Asia, you know, all over. And there's something important you should know, in most parts of the world. A lot of people don't drink alcohol, right? It's either against their religion or this or that. So when we were organizing the conference, we were very clear with the hotel in Lago di Garda, listen, we have a lot of non drinkers coming. And they're like, Oh, don't worry, we have a non alcoholic or punch, an alcoholic come in, no alcohol punch. So we everyone's there, and they're saris and, you know, their moves. And it's kind of everyone is, you know, getting ready to have a nice evening, international evening. And we start noticing that they're kind of getting wild, right? And a bit shaky tipsy and I, there might have even been a couple of people on tables. And I went up to finally it sort of dawned on me these women are drunk. I went up to the guy that like ran the catering of this hotel, and this was an Italian but I'll say it in England, like what's going on? They're drinking the non alcoholic punch, and they're drunk. And he said, Ah, no alcoholic or in Italia in Italia. Oh, just a little alcohol. And I was like, oh, oh. And I was like, Oh my God, it was anyways, it was funny. But then not so funny when that some of them were throwing up. So there we go. WereJason Feltman:
these people that might have had a problem in the past or like it?Antonia Bowring:
They were just like they were Hindu. They were drink. They did not drink ever touch. Oh, no, they do.Craig Pretzinger:
So against their religion. So like, they feel bad about getting drugged.Antonia Bowring:
Exactly. Yeah. It was kind of Yeah. And they didn't like the food either. Yeah. No. Too many sandwiches. Not enough meat.Craig Pretzinger:
I would say which panini. Oh, panini. That's right.Antonia Bowring:
So I am Antonio Bowery. I forgot. And I am an executive coach. I am very importantly, I am Canadian. But I live in New York City. And I am an insurance debt. InsuranceCraig Pretzinger:
dudes are on a mission to escape big hiccup by our agents.Jason Feltman:
How? by uncovering the secrets to creating a predictable, consistent and profitable agency Sales Machine.Craig Pretzinger:
Hi, I'm Craig Pretzinger.Jason Feltman:
I am Jason Feldman. We are agents. We are insurances. A heck of a story. Yeah.Craig Pretzinger:
I think that's a second story on this show that's involved Italy. Ah, right. Somebody flew to Italy to get to meet a client. Yep.Antonia Bowring:
Wow. Okay. That's cool.Craig Pretzinger:
I mean, it's a it's a bustling hub. Hey.Jason Feltman:
So you're from Canada, and you moved to the New York. Personality wise. Those are polar opposites.Antonia Bowring:
Yeah, right. Thanks for noticing that.Craig Pretzinger:
You got a problem?Antonia Bowring:
Can I tell you a story? And yeah, I'm gonna tell it to you. Like I'm an American, and then I'm going to tell it to you like I'm a Canadian. Okay. All right. So have you ever heard of high rocks? High Rocks, High Rocks is this kind of crazy physical fitness thing? You do? You run a kilometer then you like push a sled of weight, then you run a kilometer, then you row 1000 meters and you do this eight kilometers in eight events. And it's it's tough. It's really tough. Or something like yeah, like a Spartan Race. Yes, the kilometer.Craig Pretzinger:
It's like, it's a small mile. AAntonia Bowring:
small mile, right. So I got a couple of these high rocks things. And the last one I did. I'll tell this to it's an American. Yeah. Guess what, Jason and Craig I came second in my age group in a recent high rocks. Ooh. Now, do you want me to tell you like a Canadian? Sure. Yeah. Well, guess what, Jason and Craig, I came last in my age group.Craig Pretzinger:
For two people.Antonia Bowring:
So I'm going back one more time. With the goal of being the only person in my age group. I can do it super slow. And and when I get on the podium number one. Oh, that's funny. But it's kind of true. Like, yeah, how Canadians lead a? And that's how you Yaks lead. Yeah.Jason Feltman:
And I wouldn't have to say that. New Yorkers, I know there's, we have a lot of New Yorkers out there. So this suggests No, no, here's the thing. I love New Yorkers. But I've also worked on teams that talk to a lot of New Yorkers, and they're like, they always say the same thing. Oh, that person's a jerk or like that. And it's like, no, no, you don't get it. Like that's just how it is. They are blunt. They tell you how it is they tell you how they feel about it. And how the I'm like, that's just that's his passion. Like that'sAntonia Bowring:
fast. Yeah. And they order their coffee fast. Everyone's always in a rush. So apparently the speed like goes down across the country.Craig Pretzinger:
So Hawaii is just the slowest is just That's it? Yeah, yes. Yeah. I mean, Honolulu is the FAR is like way, you know, on kawaii the farthest east probably. And it's, it says slow yourself down. Where do you write? What do you pull in? Yeah. Good point. Interesting. Well,Jason Feltman:
awesome. I would love to know how you became an executive coach. And I want to know that like, like the story behind it, too. Usually, however, we get somewhere. There's a lot, there's a really good and sometimes painful story that got us where we are. MmAntonia Bowring:
hmm. Yeah, mine wasn't super painful. But I will say that this is what I was born to do. But it took me a long time to figure that out. And also, by the way, never hire a coach who just graduated from college, because they don't know what the hell they're doing. That's a personal opinion. But I don't know if you can coach under 40. I might get in trouble for saying that. ButCraig Pretzinger:
I mean, I think that there's a lot of experience that goes into it. Right? Like, I mean, you're transferring wisdom and knowledge based off. It's not just textbooks. I agree.Antonia Bowring:
I agree. So unless you're like a gold medal winner or something, and you bring a whole different sort of angle to the coaching. So I have been a management consultant worked in Canadian Parliament, worked in microfinance. Like I just told you that story. And and then I held some leadership positions in nonprofits. And then I went to run one open an office of one, actually from California, in New York. And we did really well, super well. But guess what, we did not control our budget, right? We could raise money, but the money went to the California base headquarters. And then we accessed it through the budget process, right. And the organization essentially went bankrupt, which nonprofits technically can't go bankrupt, but it did. And so we had worked really hard. And we done really well. We got it was to help low income women start businesses, we had great engagement we had recruited there were businesses that were starting to flourish, we had great numbers of them finishing the course, getting access to finance, and, and then all of a sudden, it was like gone, right. And I thought to myself, I had a, I had brought in some coaches to help the women pro bono. And this was like in 2012. And the only thing I was clear about was the next thing I do, my success or my failure will depend on me, not anyone else. And then this woman who was like my totally beloved mentor who passed away a few years ago, really young, because I'm really young. And she she He said to me, what are you going to do now? And I said, I don't know. I don't know. And she said, Well, why don't you take my intensive coaching course? at NYU? Your total natural? And literally, I never looked back. Hmm. Yeah.Craig Pretzinger:
What was it that you loved about it?Antonia Bowring:
Well, oh, man, what do I love about it? First of all, I just am naturally super curious. And so I'm really interested what's going on in people's lives. And that's one. Secondly, if you're a coach, you're always doing research and research. You're always like, taking courses trying new different kinds of therapies. You're, you're you're always building your toolkit, right? Yeah. I love that. It's like your own personal self improvement plan, right? If you're a coach, because you got to be your best to show up. Yes. For your clients. I love the diversity of clients, issues, sectors, you name it. I love the flexibility. And one of my core values is in service of and right now the way that value is activated is I am in service of helping my clients to thrive and flourish.Jason Feltman:
Love it. Are you at any gram five? Do you know what?Antonia Bowring:
I don't? I? I don't understand any diagrams. Someone told me they thought it was an eight. Oh, yeah. What's an eight? IJason Feltman:
think an eight is your I thought oh, yeah,Craig Pretzinger:
I'm a seven urinate.Jason Feltman:
I ant Yeah, so I'm an eight. I am the The Contender or no? What is it? Enneagram? Eight. It's the argumentative basically, the challenger. Greg, Greg does this. So it's like you challenge everything like even if you will take the opposition of what you actually feel just because you want to challenge the thought of somebody else. I'm always like, I'm a That's my son contrarian. OhAntonia Bowring:
yeah. Maybe I don't actually. I don't actually think of myself that way.Jason Feltman:
The fight of the investigator like you're okay. insightful. Curious. You're you love to study in that stuff.Antonia Bowring:
Or you could call it I? I am a seeker for sure. Yeah. The seeker like for sure. That is. Yeah.Craig Pretzinger:
That's, that's the investigator. The secret?Antonia Bowring:
Like, I will tell you to write my book. If we ever talk about my book. I had to give up Stand up. Because now I had a short career and stand up. Wow, most of it was online. But I had one live show. Guess where it was? On zoom online?Craig Pretzinger:
Oh, it was it at a place at the at the ApolloAntonia Bowring:
close. It was at my mother's retirement home.Craig Pretzinger:
Same thing. Did you killAntonia Bowring:
Oh, man, I you know, tough crowd.Craig Pretzinger:
But if anybody died, then you did kill. SoAntonia Bowring:
it was a tough crowd. I'm telling you. I had to ask one woman to leave because she kept trying to tell me I was 72 I guess to her that was young. It was really interesting. They want to hear a story about Okay, so I was I had this one piece of it where I was like, talking about different jobs I'd had that I worked in an orange juice factory, but I got canned. And right. That's a good one. And then I said, you know, then I said, Well, what do you think this job was? And I described it and I went, you know, I get to dress up. I get to wear makeup. I get to move my body in interesting ways. I have a very flexible schedule. And I said, What do you think I was doing? This one woman puts up her hand she goes pole dancer. And then this guy in the back goes. Lady Of The Night. Nice. Belly Dancer.Craig Pretzinger:
Belly Dancer. Yeah,Antonia Bowring:
but Lady Of The Night.Jason Feltman:
Lady Of The Night. Yeah, that is so funny. Yeah, of the night. So you're an executive coach. And we have a few topics that that are so relatable for insurance agents like leadership support. I mean, we we love talking about these things, because we know that if we can move our teams, they're the ones that do, you know, basically everything in the in the office for us. So it's so important to be a strong leader. But what I love is that you have expertise in harnessing focus with ADHD, which is awesome, because that is, that is Craig and I, we both have ADHD. Yeah,Antonia Bowring:
the adult diagnosesJason Feltman:
I do. I soCraig Pretzinger:
see ADHD see the big one? Oh, yeah, that has all the problems.Jason Feltman:
I had. I was not officially diagnosed by someone when I was young, but then my son was recently. And like, yeah, you definitely like, yeah. apple doesn't fall far from the tree.Antonia Bowring:
Yeah, that's actually how I found out. My son was diagnosed. And I was like, Wow, that really sounds like me. Yeah. I will say, this is like a little plug for my vanity project. Antonia Bowering, one word 963. On tick tock. I go on every day with ADHD tips. Oh, no way. No way. Yeah. Well, you follow me? Are you going to get the TED Talks?Craig Pretzinger:
I don't even want to be on that. tiktoks Oh,Antonia Bowring:
I don't know how to do anything. I don't either. So ICraig Pretzinger:
literally I just I don't know how to do anything. Well, you justAntonia Bowring:
find me and then say follow. And I got like a huge dopamine hit today. Because 14 People followed when I'm going viral yourCraig Pretzinger:
journey five years. You're in the double digits?Antonia Bowring:
Oh, I have. Okay. 898 followers? And I don't know any of them. That's family and friends. Yeah. But But seriously, I'll tell you my dream. For ADHD for folks with ADHD. My dream is that Craig would say to me, oh, and Tanya, we should pretend we're in the insurance, business. insurance business.Jason Feltman:
Yeah, that's what he does every day.Antonia Bowring:
Yeah. And Craig says to me, oh, Antonia, we have a meeting to get things ready for that client presentation. And I and you say you've got ADHD, right? And I say Yeah, and you say, what, what kind of accommodations are what can we do to make it easier for you? Period? That's it. I say that? Yeah, you do? Yeah. Yeah. And I say, Well, you know what, Chris? Yes. If you can, like record what you want tomorrow on your phone, I'm a really big auditory learner, that would be super helpful to me versus sending it by email? Or could you get me the documents a little bit early because I run them through a transcription. And so I can hear them and like, whatever, or hey, don't worry if I get up and walk around. That's just I need to do that to focus. Right. i My dream is the it's not like, we only talked about oh, all the superpowers, or oh, it's like so many problems. We just say different brain wiring. Okay, so what did we do to accommodate that? And that's my dream.Craig Pretzinger:
Right? I think that what's interesting is if you haven't been diagnosed with it, then you don't believe that even is a thing. Right? Like, I used to think that it was a thing that they made up so that they could sell out. Right? I mean, that's a lot of things. Maybe that could be the case, but But now, understanding like, you know, growing up in the 70s and 80s, and like, what it was like back then, and how, how I was in class, and even all through college like it was, it was impossible, like I'd either fall asleep or right. Yeah. I'm either talking and bothering everybody or I'm falling asleep. Like it's theAntonia Bowring:
in between, oh, I know. And, and you know what, first of all, I will never forget in fourth grade. I loved my teacher, sister, Marjorie Fletcher. And on the last In class, somebody brought her flowers. And I knocked them. I was so excited. I knocked the vase all over her, like, attendance book. And, and, and she I will never forget, like the way she looked at me like, really? Oh, really? And you know, not to over sell this, but there is a huge amount of shame. No, it's not an Oh, Antonio, like, why are you always looking at other people? I'm talking to you. Right? Okay. I'm not trying to look at other people, but I can't look at you. Right, right. My brain 100%. And now what would i What would I say to you, Jason? I'd say, Jason. I really want to focus. But I have ADHD. Can we go sit in that corner? So I'm looking at you in the wall? And then you will have my undivided attention?Jason Feltman:
Yeah, that's 100 present, Joe, if there's anything in the background, but there's a butterfly. It's like,Antonia Bowring:
yeah, too much. Too much.Craig Pretzinger:
So flattered. So that is so wild. Because you know what I do at the restaurant, I always take my the seat with my back to the wall. And then I see all the chaos happening, right, which is a focus, but I can't focus on the conversation. The problem, like we were just important, my wife and I were in Portugal, we were in this back room of this restaurant. And it was like, they must have put us in the room that had all the kids like it was the babysitting room. It was in SAT, like the most craziness going on in the background. And she was talking, I'm talking to her. And I just at one point, I said, Do you have any idea the kind of shitshow that's happening behind you right now? And she's like, Oh, what are you talking about? And she looked she goes, I don't know. I don't know. There's like babies screaming the throat like it was crazy. And this is really gone. That's,Jason Feltman:
it's like, Isn't ADHD like a mild form of autism? Like Like, you're like, not even a tiny bit? No, it's auditory. Visual.Antonia Bowring:
It's, oh, my God.Jason Feltman:
What does it call as workers?Antonia Bowring:
Oh, my God. What does ABH attention deficit? Oh, my God, I saved Deficit Disorder. And what it really is about is an I am not a neuroscientist. And so I please, if I get any of this a little bit, it's, they're saying it to have lower levels of dopamine. You, you are like, you're always looking for I love this language, bright, shiny objects. I'm always like, Oh, that's a new idea. Oh, that's interesting. Oh, and then, but it shows up differently in a lot of people like what? Craig just said that he could either be causing havoc or falling asleep, right. That's the challenge. And to make it even more challenging, because it shows up so differently. Women tend to be under diagnosed. The statistics are are pretty interesting, but I can't remember them.Jason Feltman:
Because HD womenAntonia Bowring:
are tend to be inattentive versus hyperactive. So they look dreamy, looking out the window, but it's ADHD and and you know, there's a huge coexistence. I don't like the word comorbidity coexistence with anxiety, depression, addiction. It's like, where's that next dopamine hit coming? Right? Yep. AndJason Feltman:
Craig and I in the past, both struggled with alcohol. And we both Yeah, we both don't drink anymore. So awesome. I struggled with drugs a lot in my past as well. And just like, let's not go there. Yeah. Well, you know what, it's funny. It's like, like, I don't feel shame about. I mean, I guess I should feel shame about oh, no, but no, well, I'm saying like, if somebody's listening to this, you would think right, but like, it's, to me, it was a incredible learning lesson. I'm so glad I like to be able to go through stuff like that, like some stuff that brought a lot of pain and then to be able to get past it is pretty phenomenal. And then you're so grateful that you're not on the other side. And yeah,Antonia Bowring:
huge. Like, I don't drink now either. And it's awesome. I kind of quit drinking and got my diagnosis around the same time. And I want to just say to anyone out there who may have been my client when I drank, I always showed up late Ready to do work and be focused and be there. And I show up as a better me now. Yeah. Yep. I was good. No, I'm great. That was an American answer, not Canadian.Craig Pretzinger:
Well, I think that there's the, like, the alcohol and or whatever is replaced is trying to like maybe replace or comfort, the shame that came with, you know, over and over. Why are you doing it that way? Why are you doing it that way? Why are you doing, you know, like just being hammered that we're doing it the wrong way? Because I mean, right. Yeah, the dopamineAntonia Bowring:
that that the anticipation of that hit, right.Craig Pretzinger:
Yeah, right. I think it was more fun to drive to the bar than it was actually being at the bar, right.Jason Feltman:
100% Yeah. It is funny too. Because like, I think that's why a lot of people will like I know for me, I would be able to show up and do things well because I was stimulated when I showed up and did things well like I knew like like if I was playing music at the time, like I had a you know a lot to do and then it's like the drinking kind of numbed out the the hamster wheel in my head, which felt good, right? And it's fun to numbing out but you can also numb it out to by like actually doing productive things by working out by by read like, you don't I mean, getting interested in stuff like research. Like yeah,