In this episode, I interview Due Quach (pronounced Zway Kwok), founder and director of Calm Clarity, a social enterprise that uses science to help people master their mind and be their best self. Due is also the author of the recently released book Calm Clarity: How to Use Science to Rewire Your Brain for Greater Wisdom, Fulfillment, and Joy.
Due arrived in the US in 1979 as a baby, after fleeing Vietnam with her parents as boat people, eventually settling in North Philadelphia where Due grew up in the midst of poverty, crime, and violence.
Graduating at the top of her high school class earned Due a place at Harvard, but finding herself in the midst of extreme affluence, among classmates from elite backgrounds who had led vastly different lives from hers, triggered severe symptoms of PTSD. (She wrote about her experience in her widely read Medium blog post, Poor and Traumatized at Harvard.)
Due turned to neuroscience in an attempt to deal with her PTSD, developing what she calls “mind-hacking” techniques to heal her brain from the trauma she had suffered. Later, on a pilgrimage to India, she discovered the power of meditation and yoga to attain heightened states of consciousness, experiences which helped her refine her understanding of what she calls Brain 1.0, Brain 2.0, and Brain 3.0.
After working in high powered jobs in the financial sector in the US and Asia, Due returned to her inner city neighborhood in Philadelphia to “pay it forward,” establishing Calm Clarity to help others master their mind and be their highest self.