131 – D’Anne Rudden “If it’s not a hell yeah, it’s a no.”

D’Anne Rudden is an expert in the field of audiology. She is basically a hearing therapist because what she does for people goes beyond the actual mechanics of your ears. She takes more of a holistic approach to your ears and hearing. I first met D’Anne when I saw her on stage at Evoso Live, delivering a speech called “Listen with More Than Just Your Ears.” One of her messages was that sound is simply vibration; and that when you change your vibration, you change your life. This message resonated with me on a deeper level and I have a feeling it will resonate with you too.

After our interview (after hours at the Skirt Sports store), I had the opportunity to visit D’Anne in her actual practice in Longmont, Colorado, the Longmont Hearing & Tinnitus Center. I went in for a few reasons.

  1. D’Anne suggests that we all get a baseline hearing check by age 50. I’m 47 so for once in my life, I’m early.
  2. I’ve been asking Tim to repeat certain words and phrases when we watch shows together and I can tell he’s sort of annoyed. An annoyed spouse is one of the signs of hearing loss so I figured I should check.
  3. A couple years ago I hit myself in the bottom of the jaw with a 20-lb slam ball which I slammed really hard and thereby bounced equally hard into the bottom of my face. My ear/jaw hasn’t been the same since, so again, a reason to check it out.

D’Anne met me after-hours so we had the place to ourselves. The office is covered in brilliant emotional photos of D’Anne around the world, helping fit people for hearing aids. We went into a little sound room and she did some testing that I’ve never had done before. Afterward we went over my results and this is the nutshell. I’m on the low side of healthy hearing in both ears. Still in a normal range for most frequencies, but right on the line. My takeaway? Now I know where I stand so in a few years if I’m having more issues, I can go in and get tested again. Plus, maybe Tim’s just annoyed with me in general not because I ask him to repeat things!

Today we talk about:

  • The ear mechanism
  • What Hearing really is: listening, comprehension, cognition, memory, balance
  • How to overcome being lazy communicators
  • Signs of hearing loss
  • Confidence
  • How yoga saved D’Anne’s life: teaching yoga outside the studio
  • Giving back: Starkey Hearing Foundation
  • Do’s & Don’ts for hearing care
  • And so much more

I was surprised at all the directions this episode took from hearing to listening to yoga to life coaching to helping others and more. I’m just so interested in how people come to find the work they do with such passion. D’Anne’s path was not obvious, yet here she is over two decades later, helping people with one of the most basic functions that so many of us take for granted. I think the quote that struck me most powerfully was when she said “We communicate most poorly with the people we love the most.” I believe she’s right and if we want to make a single change from this episode it would be to change that statement.

For more on the wonderful D’Anne Rudden: