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Coming Up to the Surface with Pellegrino Riccardi – Act 2

Pellegrino Riccardi opens Act 2 discussing the therapeutic nature of writing - and giving a shout-out to the supportive editing and publishing team for their help with his recent book, Drowning Quietly - Memoir of a Man's Shortcomings.

“It was cathartic, of course,” he says, citing the work of Brene Brown and adding, “secrecy… it’s the rocket fuel of shame!”  He touches on how healing grows when people connect through sharing stories, calling it a sort of deep “collective therapy.”  He mentions  people approaching him after talks, expressing their gratitude for feeling less alone.

Pellegrino reflects on making the decision to love his father powerfully, regardless of his violent behavior, and how that love shocked (gently) that relationship over time.  He circles back to the idea of risk and taking the chance at being vulnerable in loving men, whilst not excusing their bad behaviors.

One of the most powerful things Pellegrino surfaces is a distinction between loving and being in love, pointing out that being in love is a chemical process that will eventually wear out, whereas love takes work.

“Love is about giving someone the power to destroy you and trusting they won’t use it,” muses Pellegrino. It is a labor of choice - choosing each day to be vulnerable with the ones we love, to risk losing it all for the chance of something rich and real.

We close Act 2 with Pellegrino walking his talk, brilliantly and vulnerably.


For over 30 years, Pellegrino Riccardi has excited and delighted audiences all over the world with a style of public speaking that brings together the ability to present complex ideas in a simple and accessible way, which is then wrapped up in a seamless fusion of masterful storytelling and observational humor.

Pellegrino has a unique ability to quickly connect with a wide spectrum of audiences, from Baby-Boomers to Z Generation, from public sector employees to C-suite executives, from high-risk entrepreneurial enterprises to more “conservative” international organizations. You can find out more on his website, on LinkedIn, Facebook, or "the Insta." If you're a man or know any, Pellegrino's book, Drowning Quietly - Memoir of a Man's Shortcomings, is highly recommended reading!