For Janes Dreamweaver, posture is one of his favorite topics and is something he actively pays attention to as a yoga instructor.
“My staff will tell you they are so tired of hearing me talk about posture,” Dreamweaver said with a smile. “But posture is so important because you’re communicating things to people without saying anything.”
Observing body language is also an important tool when he records TruTalk, a podcast that he created a little over three years ago which currently has over 30 episodes.
Dreamweaver is a 2009 alumnus who returned to Truman State University to become the fitness-wellness director almost four years ago. He said he knew he would be living in the gym, like most fitness professionals, and he would have a hard time getting out and being part of the community. Creating a podcast at Truman was his opportunity to create an online community for Truman students, faculty, staff and Kirksville. He wanted to meet and talk to people he thought had an interesting passion or talent. His guests have included Emily Costello, Elijah Farrales and Amy Eagan, who respectively serve as Truman’s Equestrian Team Coach, senior track athlete and cup stacker, and women’s basketball head coach.
Dreamweaver said he wants to make sure that the people he talks to are relaxed and having a good time. He doesn’t prepare interview questions, and many of his guests are people he is meeting for the first time. He asks them if they would be interested in talking to him, and if they agree, he meets with them and records an episode. He said he hits the record button and his guest talks about what they do for the University or the community, and anything else that might come up. For him, it’s just a conversation.
“You sit across from me and talk,” Dreamweaver said. “I don’t edit it or anything. I just hit record and we talk. Then I press stop, save it, export it and then post it.”
Dreamweaver usually uploads the podcast the same day he records it. He doesn’t have a set schedule for uploading podcasts — only whenever he is able to interview someone.
It did not take him long to get comfortable talking to people, though he had to adjust to the technology. He has a general roadmap that he takes so he can connect the dots for his listeners, such as why he chose the guest to come on the podcast. He also has been seeking out alumni who are working at the University, either from the time he graduated or more recent alumni coming back to work at the school.
Dreamweaver said he was surprised by how easy it was to set up his own podcast. All he had to do was get approval from his boss, get the logo designed and download WordPress. He records each episode, takes a picture and then uploads it online.
The name of the podcast needed to be Truman-oriented, and he wanted to play with the branding on campus. He wanted to keep the title simple and have it reflect what he wanted to do with the podcast — that is, have a conversation with no edits. Thus, he chose TruTalk. There is no intro song, and he jumps right into the conversation.
Dreamweaver said his favorite part of the podcasts are the deep conversations he has with his guests. He gets them to relax by telling them to take a breath and start telling him things that they are interested in. His favorite questions relate to his guests’ habits and experiences.
“That’s what students are looking for when they have free time and they want an opinion,” Dreamweaver said. “What do you think life is really about? Do you have role models? Maybe this podcast will introduce you to someone who is inspiring. You could get a little nugget of wisdom from this person.”
Dreamweaver said he hopes TruTalk listeners will learn to be themselves, to not forget how awesome they are, to invest in their passions and not hesitate to share them.
TruTalk is supposed to help everyone slow down and talk to people. Dreamweaver said he hopes listeners will discover who they are because even though they are in school now, they will leave someday, and they will only be taking themselves and their experiences.
“And don’t forget that life is about learning,” Dreamweaver said. “TruTalk keeps me a lifelong learner. Life is more fun that way, and there is always something new out there to learn.”
TruTalk can be listened to online at the Truman recreational site.