3 Things I Learned from Zach Braff

Written by: Jessica Ortner

As a life-long fan of Zach Braff, from his hysterical and unforgettable role in Scrubs to his deeply moving films like Garden State and so many others, I couldn’t have been more thrilled at the opportunity to sit down with him for an interview a few weeks back. 

Zach recently wrote and produced a new film called A Good Person, starring Molly Shannon – an actress who served as a beacon of light for me during my high school years. 

When I sat down to watch the film, and I witnessed Molly Shannon Tapping on screen and mentioning Tapping, my jaw dropped. It was like an out of body experience that felt like a wink from the universe!

I had such a blast talking with Zach about the movie, the inspiration behind adding Tapping to the film, his personal process of working through fears and anxieties, and so much more. 

Here are my top 4 takeaways from our time together (and don’t forget to scroll to the bottom to watch the full video interview!):

#1. It’s okay to be skeptical and try something anyway

When I asked Zach how Tapping made its way into this new film, he immediately mentioned his stepmother, “an amazing human being” who is a therapist and who is very open to all sorts of different approaches.

Since he was young, Zach remembers his stepmother introducing him to many “new agey” practices, many of which he was initially skeptical about and resistant to try. But time after time, to his surprise, they would end up being “amazing” and “life changing!” 

He’s now 48 years old, and Zach’s step-mom is still suggesting new things for him to try – like Tapping! During a particularly stressful period in his life, he finally took her suggestion and tried Tapping. And despite his initial skepticism and resistance, he couldn’t deny that it lowered his anxiety. 

After personally experiencing the power of Tapping to lower his anxiety and bring him a sense of calm, he even wove a Tapping reference into his new film.

Zach’s openness to try new things, even when part of him is skeptical and wants to fight it, is a powerful reminder to always give things a chance. Because who knows? They just might end up being the solution you’ve been looking for.

#2. Be vulnerable and put yourself out there – even when you’re scared

One of my favorite parts of our time together was when Zach opened up about the vulnerability involved in creating and sharing his art. 

As Zach described, releasing something that comes “from the depths of your soul” is an act of courage and bravery, exposing the deepest, truest parts of you to potential criticism and judgment.

Zach’s recount of re-watching Brené Brown’s TED talk on vulnerability on the eve of releasing A Good Person, was such a powerful moment. He highlighted the courage it takes to be worried, to be afraid, to be anxious, and to put yourself out there and be vulnerable anyway

His experience serves as a powerful encouragement for all of us to share our stories, to make our art, and to express ourselves authentically, despite our fears and insecurities. Because when we’re willing to put it all out there on the field, that’s when we move other people, when we make a difference in the world, and when we do our most meaningful work.

Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.
-Neale Donald Walsch

#3. Everyone struggles with being human – we just need tools to help us show up

Our discussion touched on the universal experience of dealing with fears, insecurities, and doubts. 

Zach emphasized that no one, regardless of success or status, is immune to these human emotions. Even people at the very top of their field have the same, very normal, human experiences of self-doubt, anxiety, stress, and fear. 

We can’t expect ourselves to never feel these things. But we can work on how we show up for ourselves in those moments, and we have the power to build a toolkit to help ourselves move through those moments with greater ease. 

Zach’s personal toolkit includes meditation, sauna, cold plunges, cutting out alcohol from his life, and thanks to his step mom, some Tapping! These practices, and others, help him recenter and find calm when life has knocked him out of balance.

Finding tools like these that work for you, and incorporating them into your daily routine, is crucial for managing the complexities of the human experience and supporting your mental and physical health.

Watch now!

I hope you’ll all watch the full conversation with Zach below, and then go out and watch his new film A Good Person as soon as you can. 

I couldn’t recommend A Good Person highly enough. As deeply emotional as it is, the film is also infused with lots of humor, beauty, and hope. I was moved, I was touched, I cried, I laughed, and I enjoyed every minute of it. 

Watch it tonight (available on Amazon Prime). You won’t regret it! 

Until next time…

Keep Tapping!

Jessica Ortner

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