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Your Stories Don’t Define You, How You Tell Them Will

Sep 15, 2020

Angie Gallagher lived between two worlds. As a child of an immigrant mother and a white American father, her life was filled with questions and contradictions.

In this conversation, Angie shared how being raised in a family where racism was subtle but cruel made her more resilient. Her mother is Thai and met her father when he was serving during the Vietnam war. Her mother moved to Appalachia with her new husband when she was around 19 and slowly tried to fit herself into a very small, very white, very conservative town and family.

Angie and her sister watched their mother's journey, and each of them was impacted differently in their perceptions of themselves and the world around them.

Angie credits her resilience, persistence, and sense of adaptability and positivity to a pivot point in her life when she intentionally chose that path.

She studied this "in-between" idea of growing up in between cultures and ethnicities for her master's thesis. A highlight of this conversation for me was when she spoke about the action of moving from rumination to result, her realization that deep thinking can only go so far before it causes more harm than good, and that we must move into action mode at some point.

Angie spoke briefly about two films, the Celluloid Closet, and Tough Guise, and also mentioned the work of Jack Kornfield


Angie currently works at BurstIQ.  Be sure to connect with her on LinkedIn, and you can follow her fantastic photos on Instagram.


Sarah Elkins loves to guide individuals and teams to improve communication, using storytelling as the foundation of her work. She is a Gallup certified Strengths coach and uses that tool to coach her clients to improve their communication in all relationships, and to find more satisfaction at work and at home.

Her book, Your Stories Don't Define You, How You Tell Them Will is available on (supporting independent booksellers), and on Amazon. The audiobook will be available in fall 2020.