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Broken Open: the podcast

Broken Open: the podcast

By Maureen Towns
"Never Waste A Good Crisis" - Winston Churchill

Guest interviews about unexpected crisis and how in hindsight, they've turned out to be pivotal moments that made them better, stronger, more insightful people. Hosted by Maureen Towns, author of Broken Open: A Mothers Journey to Survive Her Children's Addiction and Mental Illness.
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Cathlyn Melvin, Copywriter, Editor and Full Service TEDx Coach - S3E2
Please enjoy this conversation with the great Cathlyn Melvin (originally recorded in December 2021). Hear how Cathlyn took a 90 degree turn off her well laid out path of going to law school on a scholarship to becoming an entrepreneur whose mission is to help others get their message out into the world in the very best way possible.  And please don't forget to watch her TEDx Talk "The Brave Leap Sideways".  If you've ever dreamed of delivering your very own TED Talk, be sure to reach out to her - she can help you get there! Find her TEDx talk at:
June 07, 2022
Sheldon Crocker, Author and Inspirational Keynote Speaker - S3E1
Sheldon Crocker has taken his experience of growing up with a physical disability and abuse and turned it into an inspirational message.  He shares his message is his book "Keep On Walking" and in his keynote speaking.   I hope you enjoy our conversation.  Find his book "Keep On Walking" at fb: @sheldon.r.s.crocker.speaker Linkedin: @sheldon-r-s-crocker twitter: @SheldonCrocker1
February 09, 2022
Mike Govoni - Integrative Holistic Recovery Coach - S2E11
Mike Govoni wandered into the forest feeling hopeless; he was highly allergic to almost everything, and had debilitating digestive inflammation. He was at the point that functioning in society was beyond him.  He was highly reactive to our everyday surroundings.  It was there, with the trees that he experienced a spiritual awakening that put him on the path of true healing and recovery from a life riddled with trauma.  Hear how he helps people who may be sober, but who have yet to find what they have been so desperately been seeking - healing beyond recovery!
July 16, 2021
Leona deVinne - Author, Coach, Consultant, Advisor - S2E10
Leona deVinne is all about JOY.  And not in a trite, 'just be positive' way; she is a student of neuroscience, behaviour change, and overcoming trauma.  She walks the talk - she's experienced serious hardships and now uses what she has learned first hand, as well as all the courses and training she's had, to help people like you and me find real, life changing joy.  Her NEW BOOK Finding Your Joy Spot was released last week (July 5, 2021).  Get it, read it, and rate it on amazon (please!) to help get the book in front of those who need it most.   website:  FB and IG @thejoyspot Book website - released July 5, 2021 Part of the proceeds from the sale of each book will go to Joy Socks and we will donate fun, gift-wrapped socks to patients in adolescent mental health units in local hospitals. (They love them!)
July 09, 2021
Jean McCarthy - Author, Blogger, Podcast Host - S2E9
Jean McCarthy is articulate, honest, and very talented.  She has chronicled her alcohol-free lifestyle since her first day of sobriety in 2011. Thousands of readers credit her blog, UnPickled, as a motivating factor in their decision to quit drinking. Jean joined The Bubble Hour podcast as a co-host in 2013 and took over the weekly program as its sole producer and host in 2016. The show has a devoted and enthusiastic listenership with more than 75,000 monthly downloads, so you know she has a message worth hearing!  I hope you enjoy our frank conversation about addictions, sobriety, and healing. IG @jeanmccarthy_writes FB @thebubblehour and @unpickled Blog: UnPickled Podcast: The Bubble Hour Books: UnPickled Holiday Survival Guide (2019) and The Ember Ever There: Poems on Change, Grief, Growth, Recovery and Rediscovery (2020)
May 27, 2021
John Loxley - LifeCoach, Author, Podcast Host - S2E8
I feel like I could chat with John Loxley for days.  I love his insight and easy way of articulating complex recovery concepts.   John Loxley (also known as Ren Koi) is a certified Life Coach, Author and Host of the Life in Recovery Podcast. As a DJ and music producer he spent over ten years drinking alcoholically and using drugs before starting his recovery journey in 2010 when he hit rock-bottom. He has since tried to carry the message of recovery to still-suffering alcoholics and addicts by helping them help themselves to a better life. Life in Recovery is John Loxley’s movement, which helps people to recover from mental health issues and substance and behavioural addictions through publications, podcasts, social media and life coaching.  John hosts a podcast of the same name.  His books can be found on his website and were published under the pen-name RenKoi.  Watch for a new book coming in 2021 under his real name!  Find him on facebook - Check out his website -
May 06, 2021
Veronica Cisneros - Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Motivational Speaker, Podcast Host - S2E7
Hear about how Veronica's family of origin story (trust me, your won't want to miss it) inspired her to aim higher than she thought possible.  It made her passionate about helping women become "Empowered and Unapologetic" (also the name of her podcast) in the pursuit of their dreams.  This 'take no crap' woman comes by her attitude honestly, and she's taken some tough moments as opportunities to examine how she shows up in relationships.  She can help you do the same!   Enjoy our very real conversation. Fb: Instagram:
April 15, 2021
Kanchan Prinsloo - Executive Coach with a focus on Women of Colour S2E6
Kanchan gets real in our conversation about her move to England and then back to Ontario, and how that experience had her examining who she was and what really mattered to her.  Kanchan believes that your power comes from knowing who you are. The cost of not owning who you really are is not living a full life and feeling cut off from your true self. The gift of this is that when you truly own who you are from the depths of gender and culture you came from you are being more honest, more real and people trust you. More importantly you trust yourself. Power emerges when a woman embraces herself, her culture and makes it a part of her leadership. Website - Linkedin -
April 01, 2021
Dr. Lotte Valentin - NMD, author, evidential medium
Dr. Lotte Valentin is an N.M.D., author, evidential medium, spiritual educator and an international keynote speaker! She teaches several different spiritual workshops as well as offering one-on-one sessions for mediumship, ancestral healing and as a medical intuitive. She has experienced two out of body near-death Experiences, NDE's which led her to start medical school at age of 54. Dr. Lotte also hosts her own podcast Dr. Lotte: Science with Soul to help people create a path to healing their own life physically, emotionally and spiritually, and bridge the gap between science and soul. She lives in Phoenix, Arizona, where she operates Center for Integrative Medicine as well as her Spiritual Center, Divine Spiritual Essence. Facebook and Instagram @ Dr.LotteValentin 8 week course - Souls Journey, Hearts Way, Open the Doors to Your Divine Potential, starting March 27th
March 18, 2021
Aly Pain - Certified Life Coach and Certified Relationship Systems Coach focusing on teens and parents.
If you are a parent who could use some help with your relationship with your teen, or a teen struggling with your parent, this episode is for you!  Aly Pain empowers parents to end the baffling blowups with their tween/teens by creating respectful, honest relationships.  She is honest, authentic and vulnerable in her work, and in this conversation.   Hear how her personal experience as a teen contributes to the work that she does today.   Website: IG @alypain TikTok @alypain Clubhouse @parentingteens Pinterest @alypain
March 04, 2021
Ben Bondar - Personal Shopper and Host of the Fashionably Sober Podcast
Our outward appearance is often indicative of how we feel on the inside!    For Ben Bondar fashion is reflective of his energy, sense of self, and his mental health.  Hear how he helps others find and express themselves through fashion (and within a budget).   He also generously shares some very vulnerable moments that have been pivotal in inspiring change and recovery.   Ben Bondar Instagram  - Fashionably Sober Podcast on Apple - Website - Also mentioned in the podcast - Kelsey Merkeley Jewelery -
February 18, 2021
David Lewry of Freedoms Path Recovery Society
David Lewry has made a life's work of getting honest, facing his demons, and using everything he's learned to help others in the most accessible, non-judgemental and creative way.  He founded Freedoms Path Recovery Society and hosts the Voices of Recovery Podcast.  Hear his perspective on recovery, healing and his openness and support of individual, tailored paths to freedom.   Freedoms Path Recovery on Facebook - Freedoms Path Recovery Website - Voices in Recovery Podcast on Apple - Freedoms Path Recovery Youtube Channel -
February 04, 2021
Lynn Courey, Founder and President of The Sashbear Foundation
Lynn Courey lost her daughter Sasha in 2011.  Sasha died by suicide after a short time in treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder.  Hear how Lynn and her husband started a Foundation that offers skills and hope to families struggling with emotional dysregulation and Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).  They made the decision, even in their grief, to change the landscape of DBT therapy in Canada by becoming facilitators of the Family Connections Program shortly after Sasha died.  Their passion has resulted in a Foundation in Sasha's name called Sashbear.   Their work is changing lives every day by bringing HOPE to those suffering with BPD (and their families) that they can have a life worth living. For more information about Lynn and her work visit:
January 21, 2021
Broken Open #21: Erin Ekman: A Deeper Dive
Erin Ekman is a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) with the International Coach Federation(ICF), and the principal facilitator and leadership consultant with Centrivity. This is our second podcast recording - and in this episode Erin and I do a deeper dive and chat about adversity, and her journey to resilience through loss and disillusionment.  Listen to the end to hear us talk about how we worked through the discomfort we experienced during the recording!    Erin's website: - subscribe to her newsletter to stay up to date on her upcoming online program.  It sounds incredible. Erin's linkedin:
July 21, 2020
Broken Open #20: Adele Fedorak
The beautiful Adele Fedorak and I chat about the power of storytelling.   Adele, speech pathologist and certified coach, has combined her many passions into a new program for those wanting to become great storytellers.    She's understated, genuine, and very, very talented.  I hope you enjoy our conversation.  Website (under construction): Email: The Story Edge on Facebook: Mentioned on the podcast: Parentology -
July 14, 2020
Broken Open #19: Claudia Jungert
Claudia Jungert, Portfolio Coordinator, Centre for Continuing Education and Professional Studies at SAIT, shares her story of becoming a widow and supporting her son through drug treatment.   Claudia shares how the experience changed her, how she became a more empathetic leader and a better listener, how she has learned to "stop trying to control everything", and how those things have helped her during COVID-19. Mentioned in the podcast: AARC - Alberta Adolescent Recovery Centre: PCHAD- Protection of Children Using Drugs:
July 07, 2020
Broken Open #18: Kristin Moore
Kristin Moore is a Certified Professional Recovery Coach and Intervention Specialist.  The founder of Shift Recovery Solutions, she specializes in supporting professionals, executives, and business owners with concierge level Recovery Coaching and Intervention Services.   Shift Recovery Solutions is the first Canadian Certified facilitator of Addiction Awareness in the Workplace.  Shift Recovery Solutions Website: Kristen's linkedin: Shift Recovery on Linkedin: Hazelden Betty Ford Family and Children Program:
June 30, 2020
Broken Open #17: Karine Dazé
Karine has been a snow and skateboard coach for 18 years.  A graduate of the National Coaching Institute Program at the University of Calgary, she blends her formal education with her 26 years as a snowboarder - specializing in the half pipe -  and is passing on her passion for sport to the next generation.  Not growing up in sport, I've been fascinated to hear her credit the lessons learned through sport for her own tenacity and resilience.   This podcast is being released on her birthday!   Follow Karine's personal Insta @kadaisies Push to Heal Read about the Jesse D Foundation here: For information about qualifying for the Jesse D Legacy Fund contact The Compound staff - info on their webpage. The Compound: fb:        Insta: @thecompoundyyc Riders On Board:               fb:    Insta: @ridersonboard
June 23, 2020
Broken Open #16: Donna Hughes
Donna Hughes is the President, Executive Director and Clinical Director of Inner Solutions in Calgary.    Hear her story - how she went from being a registered psychiatric nurse therapist to pioneering new programming for the treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder and creating an organization that specializes in the delivery of Dialectic Behavioural Therapy.    Inner Solutions: Visit for links to the podcast
June 15, 2020
Broken Open #15: Ally Towns
Ally Towns is changing the world!  Ally is training to become a Child and Youth Care Counsellor at Mt Royal University in Calgary.   Her passion for helping others is based on her own experience with self-harm and her belief that we all have issues we're struggling with.  She is a vocal advocate for mental health, normalizing mental health struggles, and seeking therapies that can help.   Enjoy our frank conversation about her experience! (Full disclosure: I am Ally's very proud mom)
June 08, 2020
Broken Open #14: Clare Keast
Clare Keast is the courageous mother of five beautiful children.   Clare shares her journey as a mom supporting her kids with mental health and addictions, and in particular her experience with her son Kevin, who died of an accidental overdose at the age of 36 years.  Kevin was a successful social worker who battled addiction for years without most of his friends and family even being aware of his struggle.   I hope you find something helpful in Clare's story. Mentioned in the Podcast -  Moms Stop The Harm Facebook Group: Fourcast Addiction Treatment:
June 01, 2020
Broken Open #13: Nikki Takahashi
I always knew that Nikki Takahashi was edgy but  I had no idea that she had a boatload of courage as well.  Listen to the end to hear her answer the "broken open' question.  She drops a bomb about listening to your gut in the face of societal and cultural norms! #podcast #brokenopenpodcast Instagram @nikkitakdotcom @fetchingfinninc  Website: Personal site: Fetching Freaks Podcast Release soon- stay tuned on Nikki's social media
May 25, 2020
Broken Open #12: Lisa Marie Genovese
I have known Lisa Marie Genovese for the past 8 years, and always enjoy connecting.     Lisa is the President at BottomLine Marketing where she "helps brands level up and get where they're going FASTER".   She's smart, sassy, and one of my favourite trouble makers!   Find Lisa at Linkedin: linkedin/in/lisamariegenovese Also mentioned in the show: Kolbe Assessment Tool: Culture Smith:  Emergenetics: (Recommend Tara-Lee Goerlitz as a certified facilitator) 
May 18, 2020
Broken Open #11: Jerome Zeyen
I've known Jerry Zeyen since 1982, and in this episode we have a great conversation about his career .   Jerry is as an executive leadership coach with an impressive CV.  Jerry's passion for helping leaders create a culture that supports authenticity, honesty, and integrity is inspiring.  I hope you enjoy listening as much I enjoyed talking with him.   Website: Instagram: @jeromezeyen Facebook:
May 11, 2020
Broken Open #10: Amber Brososky
Meet Crossfit and Nutritional Coach Amber Brososky.  I met Amber a year ago and she has inspired me to train harder and smarter ever since.   We have become friends and now enjoy chatting about change, personal growth, motivation, and our life's purpose.  Enjoy our chat. Find Amber at: Instagram: @ambwrbro
May 04, 2020
Broken Open #9: Randal McDonald
Everyone should have a listen to Randal.  We always have great conversations with a few good belly laughs.  Randal is a great friend who is a lifelong learner with wisdom to share.  Enjoy. Contact him for all things related to buying and selling vehicles using his email: Also referenced on the show: Jim Rohn: Book by David Goggins "Can't Hurt Me" Books about Audy Murphy: "To Hell and Back", "The Price of Valour" Family Life Family Life Today radio show:
April 27, 2020
Broken Open #8: Calvin Butts 2.0
Join Calvin Butts and me for another conversation.  Hear about what's new in the bespoke tailor business (it's going to be GREAT) and hear Calvin describe a time that he experienced adversity in trying to support someone he loves who was struggling!   Once again, you can find the Calvin at where you can book appointments with him, and on Instagram to keep an eye on what he's up to.
April 23, 2020
Broken Open #7: Joanne Gibson
I love chatting about all things leadership with Joanne.  She's a great friend and always thought provoking.  Enjoy! Linkedin: Instagram: "Reframe Your Life" Podcast Episode hosted by Joanne and Sandy with Maureen as a guest: from January 2018.
April 20, 2020
Broken Open #6: Tamara Sheppard
A casual conversation with the beautiful and talented Tamara Sheppard, a brilliant communicator and facilitator.   Hear about how she is embracing the opportunities within the changes imposed during pandemic. Facebook: dashacademy Instagram: dashacademycanada Youtube: TBA - keep an eye on Dash Academy's social media for announcements
April 16, 2020
Broken Open #5: Kathryn Kolaczek
A conversation with the great Kathryn Kolaczek.  Kathryn is the CEO of Alchemy Communications, a full-service Public Relations firm in Calgary. You can find her at Kathryn invites you to take advantage of the free marketing resources available on her website.   Thanks Kathryn!
April 13, 2020
Broken Open #4: Matt Landsiedel
A conversation with Matt Landsiedel all the way from Vietnam!  Matt is a transformation coach.   He inspires and educates people to create and live the best version of themselves.  He has a new book called Be The Space: A Loving Guide to Creating Inner Space Through Present Moment Awareness, which you can find on his website.  Contact Matt at Follow him on Instagram: liftyourcheekbones Facebook: "What the Bleep do We Know?" referenced in the show - Dr Joe Dispenza - mentioned in the show - 
April 09, 2020
Broken Open #3: Erin Ekman
A conversation with Erin Ekman, founder of Centrivity.  Erin is a certified coach with ICF and helps individuals and organizations who are committed to growth and transformation. Website: Instagram: erin.ekman Powerful Communication Program - - events
April 06, 2020
Broken Open #2: Lindsay Recknell
A conversation with Lindsay Recknell, expert in HOPE.  LIndsay teaches people to use hope to motivate and propel action.   To get in touch with Lindsay -  Lindsay's Instagram –  Lindsay's facebook -   Rachel Hollis Instagram -   Chris Chandler ( And his husband Brad (   Trent Shelton -
March 29, 2020
Broken Open #1: Calvin Butts
If you're looking for relief from all the Pandemic talk, this is not your episode.  Calvin and I chat about his business as a bespoke tailor, and our predictions for pandemic in Alberta. Find the Great Calvin Butts, bespoke tailor and all-around-great-guy at where you can book appointments with him, and on Instagram to keep an eye on what he's up to.
March 26, 2020