Type to search


#15: Stories of Resilience: An Unexpected Launch


This is a story of heartbreak, strength, and finding yourself along the way. Today I sit down with Kirstin Duncan, host of Unexpected Launch Podcast. 4-years ago, life, as she knew it completely fell apart. Her story of resilience is a reminder that there can be love and growth found in even the most complicated and unexpected parts of life.

Today’s Guest

Today’s guest is the host of An Unexpected Launch podcast, a rockstar executive, and an amazing human. When you listen to her story, you will think, this is just too much for one person. I’m honored to sit down with Kirsten Duncan as she shares the turbulent events of the past 4-years. Kirsten inspires others to remember they are not alone – that it’s possible to forge a new path forward and find meaning and beauty in the journey ahead.

Key takeaways from this episode:

  • Find your source of strength. For Kirstin it was showing her 3-boys that everything would be ok.
  • You need a support system. Who are those people who will literally pick you up when you are down?
  • We all have a story. Many of us don’t share because we feel ashamed or worried about being judged. But, by sharing your story, you empower others to feel less alone. 
  • We try to be the perfect daughter, student, coworker, wife, or mother. The thing is – perfectionism is our shield to being vulnerable. 
  • When you’re keeping yourself too busy – ask, what am I avoiding? What work should I actually be doing? 
  • If everything feels overwhelming, take a moment to slow down and allow yourself space. Find the value in just being quiet.
  • You can’t force anyone into therapy. When they are ready, they will go. 
  • When you feel safe and loved, there is room for healing to begin.
  • Life as you know it might entirely fall apart. However, through this mess, there will be unexpected and beautiful gifts.
  • If life feels like it has been turned upside down, take the opportunity to ask: Who am I? What’s next for me?
  • The unknown can be full of fear. Don’t let it control you.
  • You are not alone. You will be ok. Through hardship, will come out stronger, wiser, and transformed. 
  • You will meet many guides along the way. One day, it will be your turn to be someone else’s guide on their journey.


Gifts of Imperfection, by Brene Brown
When reading this book, Kirsten realized she was using perfectionism as a shield to being vulnerable.

Rising Strong, by Brene Brown
When we deny our stories, they define us. When we own our stories, we get to write the ending.

Broken Open: How Difficult Times Can Help Us Grow, by Elizabeth Lesser
A book filled with stories of trauma, grief, and loss. These stories gave me hope that I could make it through these tough things too.

No Mud, No Lotus: The Art of Transforming Suffering, by Thich Nhat Hanh
This book reminds us that the secret to happiness is to acknowledge and transform suffering, not to run away from it.

Do One Thing Every Day That Scares You: A Journal, by Robie Rogge
Kirsten found this book when lost in Brooklyn, New York. It inspired her to run into her fear and tackle the things that scared her.

With courage, kindness, and grace,

Love Sam

p.s Want to featured on my next episode? Write in a question or story here, I would love to hear from you!