Dr. Danielle Gordon joins me on my podcast to talk about balance, being an alternative leader, education and optometry. Danielle is an optometrist and the owner of Sphere Optometry, a full-scope purpose-driven optometric practice and optical shop in Calgary Alberta.
Sphere is all about kindness and connection, ocular and holistic wellness, and giving back to their local and global community. Also, the team at Sphere harbors a deep love for independent hand-crafted eyewear, and delivering intuitive and compassionate care. Sphere is also the home of the Fit to Read Project, a project that Danielle launched to connect books with kids in need.
Danielle graduated from the University of Waterloo with a Bachelor of Science and Doctor of Optometry degree, both with honors. Since then, she has been passionate about helping her patients to live fully and joyfully, and creating positive impact in the world around her. Outside of work, Danielle loves to spend time with her husband and two young children, get her heart rate up with a good run, and relax with a good book and hot cup of coffee.
Listen in as we talk about:
- Finding grace in balance. Danielle shares how she’s still learning to find balance, and the importance of giving herself grace in the process.
- Being an alternative leader. Challenge the stereotypes around what it means to be a leader.
- Optometry for kids. As an optometrist, Danielle shares with us signs to look out for in terms of eye health, and how to find the right optometrist for your kids.
- Education as a tool. Danielle values education, reading and learning and speaks about the importance of access to books and how this led her to create the Fit to Read Project.
Connect with Danielle:
- @sphereyyc https://www.facebook.com/sphereyyc
- Website: https://sphereoptometry.ca/
Connect with Tiana and The Part-Time Jungle Community:
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/parttimejungle/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/parttimejungle/
- Website: https://theparttimejungle.com
FINDING GRACE IN BALANCE
“Am I doing the best with what I have? Am I doing the best that I can in this moment?”
It’s no secret that as moms, we welcome all the tips and tricks when it comes to finding balance between work, kids and everything else! I asked Danielle to share how she juggles it all, and she candidly tells listeners that for her, finding balance is definitely a work in progress. Her perspective is a permission slip for all parents who don’t have a ‘fail proof’ system in place (hint: almost all of us)!
Danielle really tries to be fully present in whatever she is doing. In the motherhood and work juggle, you are wearing a lot of hats. When Danielle is wearing her ‘work hat’ she tries to focus on work. When she is with her kids, she tries to truly compartmentalize and put aside work. She tries to really enjoy her children for what they are bringing. They grow up so fast! When it comes to the idea of balance, she shares that for her and her family, it looks different in different seasons. And while her plate is often very full, she is now trying to learn how to schedule rest and blank space.
BEING AN ALTERNATIVE LEADER
What makes a good leader? How do we determine who is a “good” leader or not? Typically, we have an idea that comes to mind when we think of leaders in our lives – typically more extroverted.
Danielle shares her take on leadership, highlighting how she is introverted, likes being by herself, and is curious and quirky. She had many doubts as a business owner that maybe her leadership style wasn’t a leader that other people were looking for. What she found is that this wasn’t the case. She believes that your skills can allow you to become the leader you want to be in your own way, and that your skillset makes you unique and is exactly what people need. It’s about building relationships in different ways by being authentically yourself.
OPTOMETRY FOR KIDS
Throughout our conversation, Danielle shares key takeaways you need to consider when it comes to dry eyes, eye health and finding an optometrist for your kids.
She talks about how certain eye conditions, like having dry eyes, can be a sign of something else going on within the body. There is so much more to optometry and eye health than simply going for a yearly eye exam. Danielle gives us what we need to know.
EDUCATION AS A TOOL
“Reading is such a great way to spark imagination.”
Danielle values education, reading and learning. She created the Fit to Read Project in hopes of giving access to books for those without through organizations such as Calgary Reads. She truly believes that education is a tool and is one of those things that can be such a difference maker. It’s how we can create communities of critical thinkers where ideas come from. Danielle believes that books and reading can change the fabric of your community.
BEG, BORROW, & STEAL FROM DANIELLE
- Go-to meals on a busy night: Stir Fry or Tacos
- Favourite family activity: Bike Rides and being in nature or board games
- Favourite show: How I Built This
- Favourite book: Never Split the Difference by Christopher Voss
- Who Danielle would love to sit down with: Michelle Obama
IMPORTANT PODCAST UPDATE:
As you will hear in this episode, the last episode of The Part-Time Jungle Podcast will be released towards the end of June. In the fall, I will be launching a new podcast called “The People Teaching People Podcast“. It will be a place to talk about the who, what, when, where, why, and how of teaching and learning in a world where there is always more to discover.
I have so many mixed emotions in making this change. The connections, conversations, and sense of community that have come from The Part-Time Jungle Podcast have been incredible. However, it is the right time for a shift that aligns with my passion for education and the work that I am doing as an educator and course development consultant.
Thank you so much for listening and for being a part of The Part-Time Jungle community.
Wishing you all the best with your motherhood and work juggle!