Ep #284: How to Design Your First Course with Rebecca Tapia

The Design You Podcast Tobi Fairley | How to Design Your First Course with Rebecca Tapia

We’re still on our topic of online courses, and today I have a very special guest. She’s created a course about a taboo topic that gives her students real, tangible solutions. This is an amazing example of just how good an online course can be, and we’re diving into all of it, the behind-the-scenes, and the results this course has produced.

Rebecca Tapia is a physician-anthropologist-creative actively exploring and reframing the mental drama we have about supporting aging parents. She’s created an amazing course around her passion called Unsandwiched: 5 Steps to Managing Your Mental Drama About Aging Parents, and how she’s done it is truly inspiring.

Rebecca created an amazing course inside my Online Course Incubator, bringing her ideas and passions to a larger audience, so tune in this week to discover what that process was like. We’re discussing Rebecca’s course from conception to completion, how she weaved her uniqueness into every aspect of it, and our advice if you want to create your own course to share your gifts with the world.


My Online Course Incubator is launching again in the fall of 2023. We only have 10 spots, so click here to sign up before it’s too late!

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What You'll Learn From This Episode

  • How Rebecca first became interested in the creative industries.
  • The mental drama around aging that Rebecca addresses through her course.
  • Why Rebecca thought a course was the best way to present the transformation she has to offer.
  • The doubts Rebecca had about designing a course, and how she overcame them.
  • Why the design process is more psychological than you might think.
  • How Rebecca’s online course has opened new doors for her in the design world.
  • Rebecca’s advice to anyone considering creating their own online course.

Featured On The Show

Full Episode Transcript

You are listening to The Design You Podcast with Tobi Fairley, episode number 284.

Welcome to The Design You Podcast, a show where interior designers and creatives learn to say no to busy, and say yes to more health, wealth, and joy. Here’s your host, Tobi Fairley.

Hey, friends, so we’re still talking online courses today. This one is so interesting. I love our guest today. It’s my new-ish friend, Rebecca Tapia, and she is amazing. She is a rehabilitation physician and brain injury medicine specialist turned content creator, out to explore and reframe our own drama about supporting our aging parents which is so needed!

A topic that is taboo, which she is on a mission to change. She really delves into this, not only in today’s episode, but in her course about this taboo topic of aging parents and how to create tangible solutions through her course and her new podcast.

She is really out there on the forefront, leading groundbreaking conversations not only on her podcast, which is brand new, called Real Conversations About Aging Parents, but in other forums. We’re going to be seeing her, for those of you who are designers, at High Point Market this fall, in October.

So, she’s a physician-anthropologist-creative. She’s really actively exploring, reframing, this mental drama that we have about aging parents. Which, let’s be honest, we also have mental drama about our own aging process. So, I love this episode. I love Rebecca. I love the work she is doing.

She’s going to share with you how, as a physician, she’s watched this drama play out so many times with her clients, and what she did with all of that experience and information. She took notes, by the way. She turned it into something that is so valuable for so many of us. So, she herself is living in a multi-generational home. She has her almost 90-year-old grandmother living with her, her husband and her three children, which she talks about also in the podcast. She’s a total inspiration.

I’m going to be quiet and let you listen to this fantastic conversation with Rebecca Tapia.
Tobi Fairley: Hey, Rebecca, welcome to The Design You Podcast. I’m so glad you’re here today.
Rebecca Tapia, MD: Oh, I am so excited. Thank you so much for inviting me.

Tobi: So fun. Okay, we’ve been working together for a little while. But we’ve been working closely together for the last six months, because you’ve been building a course, which is amazing. But before we get into all of that, why don’t you tell everybody about you?

Because I think your story’s interesting. I think your background is interesting. You’re not just another ‘ole interior designer on here. So, kind of tell everybody who you are, what you do, and we’ll go from there.

Rebecca: Sure. I am actually a physician that got interested in home design about 2015, when my husband and I decided to do a custom build. I saw an opportunity to bring my grandmother to come live with us. She had been in a not-so-great situation; kind of moving between some family members.

When we sat down with the architect, and we started looking at the designs, I was just so intrigued by the power of interior design to keep her functional and mobile and improve her quality of life. I felt like I had come upon some secret magic sauce, that I don’t know why I didn’t know about this before. It just lit a fire in me.

I just thought, from a physician perspective, and from somebody trying to help my grandmother, I just thought the idea of interior design was so fascinating. It’s such an underutilized tool in thinking about how we can help other people. That sat deep in my belly somewhere for a long time. I was really busy at the time and didn’t really circle back to interior design as a tool for improving function and health probably till 2021.

I had been listening to your podcasts actually for quite some time, and you had talked to Kricia Palmer, who’s a now a mutual friend of ours. She was a physician that turned into a designer. It just felt like I had finally put some pieces together, that that was possible.
At that time, I started doing some side consulting on multigenerational designs specifically,
and in the back of my head had thought doing one-off on the side was not necessarily helping a lot of different people. I had had it in my brain somehow that I would write a course someday. Then that kind of comes to where you came in more efficiently in my life, outside of just listening to you on the podcast.

Tobi: Yeah, amazing. Okay, so are you a practicing physician still? What do you mean when you say consulting? Like, were you talking about interior design, where you bridging the gap between the two fields? Kind of help me understand a little bit more, and everybody listening, what role that is that you’re playing between these two industries?

Rebecca: Sure, yeah. So, I’m definitely still a practicing physician. But in order to meet that creative part of my brain and follow that passion that was sparked so many years ago, I just started offering consultations on design edits.

So, people would bring me a design that they already had, or that they were thinking of doing, and I would go through and think of it from a physician perspective, a health perspective. More specifically, if I could talk to the person who was actually going to live there.

Then make suggestions on the details or the specifications of different things, like the countertop height, materials, those types of things. Not necessarily from an aesthetic standpoint, but from a functional standpoint, now that that’s coming so much more common to merge generations in a household. But again, that was just a side thing I was doing for quite a while, and I felt like I wanted to do something a little bit bigger than that.

Tobi: Yeah, I love it. Okay. So, that’s when the course came in. You’ve been part of my online course incubator that ran from January to June, putting together your amazing course and program. So, tell us about that. What is the course? What do people learn in the course? How does this bring these ideas and passions you have to a larger audience?

Rebecca: It went through multiple iterations, I’ll put it that way. When I first signed up with you, I was thinking I was going to write a course on multigenerational design. Going through your process, and sort of coalescing around different ideas, I realized that this probably wasn’t going to hit all of my different skill sets and experiences, and it wasn’t going to be as exciting as I had hoped.

I would try to write it. I’d sit down, and I’m thinking, “Okay, who’s going to buy this course on multigenerational design from a non-interior designer?” But it was in speaking with you… I remember, specifically, where I was sitting; I know, that sounds kind of funny. You were coaching me on this, and I was thinking, “I don’t know that this is the right course. It doesn’t feel right.”

You said, “I want you to swim upstream and find those same people, but maybe a step or two before they’re engaging with you for multigenerational design.” I know that that was, in the course of lots of discussions you’ve had, for some reason in my brain, it just felt like all the pieces fell in together at that one moment.

I thought, “I am going to talk about the problem I’m having when I’m doing these design consults. Nobody’s actually having a difficult conversation with somebody about what’s going to happen to all their stuff when they move in.” I would talk to somebody about what I thought was going to be a home design, and they’d say things like, “Well, we don’t talk to mom about that. Dad doesn’t want to…”.

They would say things that just blew my mind with how many cultural and social dynamics there were. And of course, I was trying to make this a formulaic design thing. I realized that really, you become part of the psychology, when you’re doing design, of whatever you’re designing.

Whether it’s two generations together or a new home, you think you’re still over in the blueprint somewhere, but you’re well in the thick of the psychology of the dynamics of that family, or wherever that person is in life. And so, I thought, “That’s exciting to me. I could get behind that. I could write an entire course about what I have seen as a physician.”

I mean, I’ve been standing at that intersection for over 11 years, of people having catastrophic life events happen, and then the family scrambling to try to get prepared, and the dynamics, and then the design components of trying to get somebody out of the hospital; they can’t go home because the design can’t meet their needs. It just felt like a eureka moment. I thought, “That’s exactly what I’m going to write of course on.”

So, I ended up writing a course on managing mental drama about supporting aging parents and getting prepared for that phase of life. Then I just started to feel, I don’t know how to explain it, but it just felt more natural and like it was already in there. I knew it was going to take a lot of effort to pull that out and to get that content together.

That was it for me. I just sat down and wrote it a couple of weekends later. That was where things really connected. So, that was really, really helpful.

Tobi: I love that. I do remember exactly having that conversation. I’ve said that many times to people, what’s that one step before they need the thing you think they need? That kind of, as you called it, swimming upstream. I love that, because maybe later on there is a design course in you, or a collaboration with you and a designer in a design course, or something else.

There are so many places you can go, once you figure out how to find your voice and create your first course, and go through the process and all of the gnashing of teeth and all of the stuff, there’s something about being on the other side of that, of knowing how to do it again, right? Like, you could come back and have other versions.

Rebecca: So true. I don’t even think I told you this, but I did end up writing a second course. It’s about health-based design or science in design. So, I’ll be at High Point, this October, on a panel talking about exactly that. It didn’t limit me just to that one idea, it actually just gave me a pathway. I ended up writing the second one, and becoming part of that Certification for Science in Design.

Tobi: Oh, that’s so exciting. Amazing. So, tell us about that. What does that mean? What is the Certification of Science in Design? I know you had mentioned it to me before, there were some groups and people you were talking to where you were like, again, this perfect expert to come in from the physician side. Because we don’t always have that voice in the conversation on the design side. But yeah, tell me a little bit more about that.

Rebecca: Yeah, so it’s run by Linda Kafka and Mike Peterson. I connected with them some time ago, and they had been publishing various webinars and other types of meetings and so forth on the topic. But they came together and decided to write an actual certification course, which will be going live this fall.

Part of the introduction to that is a symposium we’re doing at High Point, October 12th-14th. The name is Design, Art & Science Symposium. I’m going to be one of the faculty members on that course, and then also presenting there. Just as an example, I was able to basically take everything I learned and do it over again.

And I already had this other connection, which is really coming together for me. I just enjoy that I can do both things, and I can be, you know, producing content in both areas. They have a nice synergy, as well.

Tobi: Yeah, I love it so much. Okay, so let’s go back to the course. So, the name of your first course, that you built in online course incubator, is unSandwiched, right?

Rebecca: Right.

Tobi: Does it have a subtitle too, or a description?

Rebecca: Manage You Mental Drama About Aging Parents.

Tobi: Okay. Yeah. So basically, it’s the sandwich generation. It’s those of us who have children and aging parents, and how to have those hard conversations, and we really had a transition. It’s about a lot of stuff, right? what are some of the other things, besides how to have the hard conversations, that people are going to learn when they get your course?

Rebecca: So, I laid it out in five different modules. We even talked about how many modules to have; the length and so forth. I started from the… Again, this is a psychological focus as well. The first, was just understanding the stories that were already in your head about yourself, your parents, what that meant. I was taking a lot of the dramatic emotional language I had heard, even myself included, and putting it out on the table.

Module 2 goes through the actual facts of the situation. It’s actually the shortest module of the five. Because the facts are actually pretty boring, but it helps you lay out what the situation is and put some data around it and write clean sentences about what’s actually happening.

Then, number three, which I think is the core of the whole module, is to get really clear about your value system. Not in a religious way or a specific way, other than understanding where you want to show up and how you want to show up in life.

Then making decisions and expending effort from that place, versus “I have to. I have this cultural pressure to do this. Good daughters do this.” So, we examine all of those types of thoughts. Like, what does a perfect daughter do? That’s the first three modules.

Module 4 goes through the nuts and bolts. That’s my physician perspective module of literally, just how do you get ready to go to the hospital if that happens? What are the different types of rehabs that are available? Medicare, Medicaid; just a primer. So, you have an idea of what these terms mean, even if you don’t need that right now.

Module 5 is an extensive, step-by-step, difficult discussion guide. I organized it into several different areas, like advanced directives, or living situations, or if you ended up needing assistance who would you want to provide that?

Not that everybody can have all those conversations right now, but I wanted people to have a literal workbook that they could go through with somebody if they were willing. Or just to start to realize what they don’t have, the information that they don’t have necessarily, and be able to get it in the future.

Tobi: That’s amazing. I mean, the value of that is just mind blowing. I’m sure there are some people listening right now who are in that place, and they’re like, “I came here for interior design or business coaching today, I had no idea I was going to find this kind of gem of a resource.”

But that’s what’s so beautiful about taking people like you and pulling out your life experience and your intellectual property and your passions and all of the things, and rolling those into something that other people can access. So, it makes me so happy and proud of you, and for just being a part of that. So yeah, thanks for letting us be.

Can you talk a little bit about the experience for you of being in the online course incubator. What did it do for you? What did it do that you weren’t able to do on your own? What did you love about it? What was surprising about it? Tell us some of those details.

Rebecca: Sure. Just as a quick backstory, I had tried an online course developer about a year before yours came out, and I failed at it. It was just a lot of very beautifully written information. But just where I was in my life, and my mindset, I tried, and I put it away.

I actually felt some shame around purchasing something and then not following through, that I think it actually set me back maybe six to nine months in even pursuing it. Because I’d already bought what looks like a PDF guide of how to do it and I couldn’t put it together. What I decided was to reverse engineer. Where would I want to get a course from?

I had already known you, liked you, trusted you from the podcast, and I liked your brand. When that came out, that email, I remember where I was sitting, and I turned to my husband and I’m like, “I’m about to buy an online course incubator.” I had some look, and he’s like, “I’m not going to challenge that. You have that look.” I said, “I think that’s the best thing.”
Tobi: She’s determined.

Rebecca: I was determined. So, what I found was… Just as a physician, I operate much better on teams and collaboration and discussion. What I knew it offered initially, was not just your expertise, but there would be other people that we could work with. It was really getting the whole team and their input and their feedback.

I found immediately that it was it was a good network of people, that there was a very active, engaged feedback system. Which is really what I was looking for to make sure that I was on the right track, and just reassurance really for the many turns. Like, “Hey, just keep going. This is normal,” and that type of thing.

Tobi: Yeah, because that’s the biggest obstacle, or the biggest multiple obstacles, is the stuff that keeps coming up mentally, emotionally; the thoughts, the fears, all of that stuff through the process, the second-guessing, right? It’s not that you didn’t have the expertise, you had it, it rolled out perfectly when you put your mind to it. It’s all those other thoughts that get in the way.

Rebecca: Yeah, and part of the incubator was having some coaching with Lauren, and that was transformational as well, just even the first coaching session. I told her all of my hopes and dreams, and she just gave me a lot of good advice. I was thinking, at that point, of changing my career, and changing into a different job just to help support pouring out this content that I knew was in there.

She challenged me on all my different timelines and reasons why you shouldn’t do that. And again, that was another moment where I thought, “She’s absolutely right, I can do this. I can put together a plan to really make this work.” So, that that was also very helpful.

Tobi: I love hearing that. So, what did you like about like the tools or the meetings? For somebody listening that’s like, why would I pay that much money to come do something that I could do on my own? What were some of those other things, besides your peer group obviously, the showing up and the accountability, but anything else stand out that was really helpful?

Rebecca: Yeah, a lot of it goes back to, and I’m not trying to butter you up, I promise, but how much I trusted you because of your brand. I went that whatever you suggested had been researched, tried and true.

So, I saw it as an efficiency thing. I’ll pay money to save time for myself, and so, I saw this as, “Okay, if she’s already been through this, I’m sure she’s thought about this and maybe tried it five different ways.” So, that was going to be helpful.

In addition to that, I know this sounds simple; you gave us a lot of templates and a lot of tools. But there was something about the PowerPoint templates you put out that really accelerated things for me. I am not an experienced graphic designer, by any means. I did not like the way my PowerPoint was even aesthetically looking, but I didn’t know how to fix it.

For some reason, just having those templates available and thinking, this is my own thought, “Well, if an interior designer put these together, and a graphic designer approved these, then they must be pretty good.” Because I did have a lot of reservation, honestly, about even presenting to interior designers; not being somebody from a design or a fashion or anything aesthetic background at all.

I always thought, “Well, at least it has to look pretty.” That’s what I kept telling myself, and so I don’t remember which month it was that you put those out, but I immediately transferred everything on there.

Tobi: I think it was three, somewhere in the middle, like three or four. We didn’t want to put those out… I mean, of course we could put them at any time, I guess. But we were giving you time to kind of work through your outline and get your building blocks in there. Then we were like, “Okay, now here’s how to make it look pretty. Pick one of these and see what happens.”

Rebecca: Yeah, yeah, I thought that accelerated things quite well. When you did give tools, it was not just in one way. It was, you could do it this way. It was limited; it wasn’t going to give you a lot of decision fatigue. But it was, “If you’re more visual, do it this way. If you’re more Excel spreadsheet, do it this way.” I appreciated that I could have both and move forward.

I also enjoyed just having the team, but hearing you talk to other people helped me understand how much I was overthinking things. I don’t know how it is, but when you hear somebody else saying it, you think, “Oh, they’re probably really overthinking this.” Then I hear you tell them that as well, and I think, “Yep, now I can see it in myself better.”

Tobi: Yeah, I hear that a lot. It’s true for me, too. Watching other people get coached or move through an obstacle or come up with a solution sometimes is more powerful than you being in that place. For multiple reasons, right? Like you said, you could see it in yourself.

You’re also not in the hot seat, so you’re not terrified. You’re not not listening to the person. You’re not missing it because you’re thinking about yourself and what are you going to say next; all of those reasons.

But then there was some really fun… As you’d kind of alluded to earlier, there were some really amazing synergies with the people that happened to be in this group, which always happens. But I mean, you were building what you’ve just shared with us that you were creating. We had another person creating interior design for kitchens for weight management. We had another person working on a wellness type of space for new moms.

There were people that had some crossover with your topics and their topics, and it was fun to just watch y’all network and share ideas. The people you just mentioned you were working with, Linda and Mike, that you already knew, somebody else told you about them. You were like, “Oh, yeah, I know them. Just the validation, that was so fun to see. I’m sure it felt good from your perspective to have that, as well.

Rebecca: Absolutely. Several the designers reached out to me separately, and I’ve had separate relationships and conversations with them. I think that’s been phenomenal. I didn’t expect that part of it.

Tobi: Yeah. So fun. Awesome. Okay, so what’s next for you? What are you going to do? Are both courses out? Can people get them? Tell us about that, and then tell us where you’re headed. Is it on this path?

Rebecca: Sure, sure. So, the design course is part of that certification I mentioned. That’s coming out in October. Then, my Managing Mental Drama About Aging Parents, I just finished the beta testing for it. I’ll launch it again here in September. I’m not sure when this podcast is going to come out. But what’s even more exciting, I’ve got so much momentum and confidence about me on this topic that I ended up starting my own podcast.

Which had also been a lifelong… I shouldn’t say lifelong. That’d be ridiculous, right? I’m too old to be lifelong for a podcast… But it had always been a way to consume information, and I wanted to share information. So, in part of the building my brand and building the awareness, which I know you talked a lot about, it’s make sure people know who you are.

I started that podcast around the same time we were finishing up the course. I’ve got about 1500 downloads on it, about 500 listeners, and 20 episodes so far. So, that’s just been keeping me going as far as staying engaged, challenging myself, and really engaging with people in a different way. So, that’s been fun as well.

Tobi: That’s amazing. We did talk a lot about that in this program, too. Like, how to get visibility, how to create credibility, how to get people interested in the course, build the trust; all the stuff. So amazing that you, and congratulations, that you took that leap. What’s the name of the podcast? Where do people find the podcast?

Rebecca: Sure. It’s called A Real Conversation About Aging Parents. It’s on all the major podcast sites, like Apple and Spotify.

Tobi: So good. I love that. Okay, so this episode will probably come out, I think it comes out the last day… I think it’s either the last day of August or the first Thursday in September; probably the second one. So, it should be right around the time that you’re getting ready to relaunch your course.

If people come to your site or your podcast, and tell us what your website is too, they’ll be able to either see it there or see information that it’s coming soon, right?

Rebecca: Sure. Yeah. is my website, and then I’m on Facebook and Instagram also with Rebecca Tapia, MD.

Tobi: Amazing. Okay. Amazing. We’ll put all that in the show notes so everybody can find that. Well, anything else that you want to share, either about this process, about anything that we haven’t touched on yet. I love your story.

I love your courage to leap out and do this. I love that you are following your passions, not only of design and the podcast, I love seeing all of this. But is there anything that we haven’t touched on that’s really important, that you want to get out to everybody that’s listening?

Rebecca: Sure. So, along the lines of considering the incubator, I know you’re focused on developing the course, but you’ve already mentioned a couple of things. The ability to move longitudinally, and look and say, what else do I need to do for marketing? What else do I need to do for even post marketing follow up? You guys didn’t put these hard…

Oh, we only talk about the course development, writing it in PowerPoint, or something. It was really a comprehensive soup to nuts, if you will, on writing the course. I felt like that was the community, that was the setting that I needed to be successful and to put that out there. So, I really appreciate that.

Tobi: I love that you said that. Yeah, I was thinking, when I built it, I was like, “Okay, I see people buying other people’s courses on courses. I see people saying they want to do a course. I see people having great ideas for a course, and the courses aren’t coming. They’re not happening. What is that missing piece?” That is what we were trying to create.

It’s that safety to ask all the questions, the cheerleading, and the accountability to work through the process with you. And then, just that open platform to say, “We may not have this as part if any of our spreadsheets or whatever, but ask away. We are an open book. We will answer whatever it is that you have a question on.”

We don’t get a ton into the tech. Although, this time, when we’re launching, we’re offering a tech upgrade. Because my team is going to do some support on the tech piece, which we didn’t offer in our first round; it was more of kind of a beta for us. So, even have that now.

But I love that you mentioned that, because that’s always my goal, is to just be an open book. I’m a guinea pig. I try things. I don’t like to gate keep information within containers like this, or experiences like this. So, thank you for saying that.

Rebecca: Absolutely. If I could add one more thing about the whole reason I wanted to do this, if you’re finding yourself struggling with some of the stigma or taboo topics in dealing with aging parents; it’s not something that we talk about enough as professionals or as women; you want to come and be part of that conversation. Please find my podcasts. Please find my website. That’s what I’m here to do. And the more people, the more voices, the more stories, I think that’s going to help us move forward as well.

Tobi: I love that so much. I’m sure they can DM you on Instagram. Because I think you’re so right. That’s the thing that probably feels the most rewarding about helping people create things, like what we helped you create. Because I do think there are so many topics, just like… Well, yours is not just a topic, it’s an it’s a broad kind of conversation. There are so many other versions and aspects and pieces of what you’re helping people with.

But whether we’re an interior designer or creative or business person, whether we’re a man or a woman, whether we’re affluent or having to pinch pennies, we all are going to go through this some point, either ourselves or with our parents as we age; all of the things.

I think that you’re right, so many of those topics aren’t talked about. America, it just really loves to favor the young. We don’t like to talk about aging. We don’t like to talk about any of these icky topics. And so, bravo to you for having the courage not only to create a course on it, but to have an ongoing, regular conversation on your podcasts, about something that’s really hard to talk about for so many people.

Rebecca: Absolutely. Thank you for support in making that.

Tobi: So fun. Well, it was a joy to have you. I love knowing you. I can’t wait to watch what you’re doing next. Is there an ongoing piece to this certification? Like, your course will be part of the bigger certification, and then will you be doing other things around that?

Rebecca: Yes, absolutely. Me going to High Point is really the debut of that. I’d like to sort of see what the interest level is. I’d love to create more content on that side. Like I said, that’s a very genuine interest I have. It’s really giving a different perspective in the design community, from the physicians. And really cheering you guys on. The power of interior design to shape lives and pull generations together is unbelievable. I’m almost jealous that you can actually influence the format of the home and how much that can help people. So, I have a design crush on interior designers.

Tobi: Thank you for sharing that. I love that you started this podcast off with that. It means so much, because so often interior design sort of gets dumbed down to decorating or shopping, and it’s far beyond that in so many ways. Maybe in the commercial side it gets a little bit more credibility.

But in the home, which is what you’re talking about, in the day-to-day, I think it doesn’t get it’s due for the power that it has to, like you said, impact our daily lives, our quality of life, our wellbeing, our longevity; all the things. So, to have someone that is a physician, that deals with this all the time, stand up and say out loud how powerful this is, I think it’s so important! And wow, thank you for doing that as well.

Rebecca: Well, I live with it, right? My grandmother, she’ll be 90 this fall. When she moved in with us, she was 83. I know from a clinical perspective, she wouldn’t be where she’s at right now, functioning at the level she’s functioning, extending her life, and really supporting social engagement; the way that the place is set up to have visitors, so she can host, and all the things that are so core and important to her as a matriarch.

I literally live next to it in my own home and I see it every day. So, that is another big push for me to continue to put out that content, to connect, to be part of that community. That’s really what we’re moving towards in The Science in Design.

Tobi: No, I love that. I love what you just shared about that. Because you didn’t just say, “Well, if she hadn’t had a grab bar she couldn’t get out of the shower.” You said, if she didn’t have a place to entertain and connect with people and basically be a hostess. It’s that human connection that keeps us around for so long and gives you a purpose, right?

That’s so beautiful that you said that, because I do, again, sometimes think that design gets just kind of brought down to a task or a specific specification. What you’re talking about is… I mean, both are important. Yes, you do have to specify the actual materials and the finishes and the space planning and all the things.

But I think to look at it from more of that 40,000-foot view and say, but what is the result we’re creating for people here? What’s the change we’re making for people here? Just imagine your adorable grandmother hosting and connecting with people in her own space, that’s connected to your house, makes me smile. It’s so good.

Rebecca: Oh, yes, it’s so much fun.

Tobi: So good. Okay, well, we can only be so lucky. Maybe we can have our children listen to this so that they will remember this when we’re 82 and we want a space that we can entertain and be connected with those people we love. I think we have to have you back. I love talking about this from the course perspective, we did get to talk about a lot of other things, but I think there’s a whole other conversation about this topic that we can dig deep in.

The multi-generational living, which I think has become lost in our community over the last, what, 30 years or more? Thirty or 40 years. We see people moving back to that for all kinds of reasons. There’s been some amazing articles that I’ve seen in Wall Street Journal, about all these college students and young adults who are moving in with their grandparents.

There are such neat things happening that I definitely want you to come back and let’s do a deep dive into this whole concept of multi-generational living. Let’s do that sooner than later, because it’s very needed.

Rebecca: Oh, absolutely. I’d love to, thank you. Awesome.

Tobi: Okay, well, we’ll bank on it. It’s a date. Thank you so much, Rebecca, for being here today. It was so fun. Yeah, I can’t wait for people to listen. I know. We’re going to get lots of great feedback. So, again, congrats and yeah, I’ll see you really soon.

Rebecca: Absolutely. Thank you so much. I appreciate it.

Okay, is she not amazing? I mean, first of all, she’s super smart. Second of all, I love that she leaned into her creativity, like so many people we bring on the podcast that initially got into one field and just couldn’t ignore this creative urge that they had, that they wanted to tap into. So, I love how she is specifically combining her two passions to do work that is a major life changing work.

So, check out Rebecca on Instagram. Go find her podcast. Especially if you are already in this place of living with aging parents, or getting close to needing to know how to handle this situation, Rebecca is going to be your new best friend, your new favorite expert. I’m so glad that we could connect her with so many of you that are going to find her to be a valuable resource.

Okay, friends, that’s what we have for you today. I’ll be back next week with another great episode, I promise, of The Design You Podcast. Bye, for now.

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Hi! I'm Tobi

I help creative women (and a few really progressive dudes) design profit-generating, soul-fulfilling businesses that let them own their schedule, upgrade their life and feel more alive than ever!

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