We all have a story of moving forward fearlessly on a big or small scale. Some of us are in the middle of our own right now - and I want to learn about them all. So instead of reading a crapton (I have been) and learning in just a few months what seems like more than I did in an entire year of school (also true) and then regurgitating the information to you (down to do that!), I thought I'd do what I would want to listen to right now: talk to someone who knows a lot more about this stuff than I do and has personally experienced it firsthand.
Brenda Gonzalez is co-host and co-creator of Tamarindo, a socially conscious podcast she hosts with her friend, Luis Octavio. Together, Luis and Brenda discuss politics, food, music and life through a Latino lense. Recommended by NPR's Latino USA, they interview comedians, artist, activist, and those that want to shake things up in their community. Brenda has over 15 years of experience working with nonprofit organizations, most recently with a national Latino civil rights organization, the National Council of La Raza - which is the country's largest Latino nonprofit advocacy organization. She is also the Board Chair of Los Angeles Education Partnership, an education nonprofit working in high poverty communities to foster great schools.
Bonus points - she's my former neighbor!
In the episode we talk about Brenda's experience coming into the United States from Mexico as a four year old, the complications that come with wanting to become a citizen (or even just go to school!), how she began working with non-profits, and how a dark diagnosis in her family led them to the lives they are leading today. We also talk Brenda's experience at the Women's March in Washington D.C, the power of simply having conversations, and what YOU can do to make a difference in your own community even if you don't have a background in politics or civil rights.
This is a must-listen, must-share...all the musts.
If your brand of activism lives on the mat instead of the streets, I am here to assure you: it is still activism. Today's WANTcast is all about the intersection of activism and wellness - what the wellness industry gets right, where we fall short, and the small changes we can make on the regular to make a huge difference in the long run.
Things going on (besides marches) in the next couple weeks around the country: https://womenagainstnegativetalk.com/2017/01/ways-to-make-a-difference-this-week-beyond-if-youre-not-attending-a-womens-march/
Read it here: https://womenagainstnegativetalk.com/2017/01/on-activism-an-open-letter-to-the-wellness-industry/
Today's guest is Sarah Britton - author, holistic nutritionist, certified nutritional practitioner, and artist (you'll hear why later in the podcast) who is based in Copenhagen Denmark. She is the creative force behind MY NEW ROOTS, an award-winning food blog featuring original recipes that taste great, look beautiful, and boast incredible health benefits. She follows the philosophy of making healthy choices every day and has been creating plant based recipes for readers all of the world since 2007. She's the author of the my new roots cookbook and the upcoming cookbook naturally nourished healthy delicious meals made with every day ingredients.
In this episode we talk about overcoming obstacles, manifesting things in your life and how important it is to be mindful of what you wish for, how Sarah completely revamped her relationship with food, and three things that ANYONE can do to remove what Sarah calls the fog from your life and wake up FULLY. Basically, how to realize how good you're meant to feel on a day-to-day basis. Verdict: she's the perfect positive voice to help us ring in the new year.
Going through - or just went through - a major transition? Had a stressful year? You might be in need of a planned freak-out. In this episode I break down my OWN structured, PRODUCTIVE break-down - and how you can do the same.
For this episode, I wanted to talk what's going on post-election - but I didn't want to simply have a conversation about how scary things are over and over. I think that we've all had enough of that. I wanted to have an in-depth conversation with someone who could speak to the nitty-gritty details and logistics of it all way more than I could...someone who (preferably) had an inside look into politics, and also (preferably) was in the business of mindfulness. Because in order to change minds and change lives, we can't speak in vague terms. We need to be able to articulate why exactly things are as terrifying as they are, and we need to be solution oriented and determined to mobilize in a way that works for us.
I knew that Danielle Beinstein would be the perfect person to have this kind of conversation with. Dani is a meditation teacher and astrologer in Los Angeles - and go figure, also has a background in politics! You might remember her from Episode Two, which is still one of the most downloaded episodes...so if you haven't listened to that definitely put it on your to do list.
In this episode, we dive into what's going on in the country, we explore why exactly this is so terrifying (like, actually break it down, not just get worked up about it being terrifying and get ourselves more and more anxious along with you), what we need to know about the way our government is set up, what astrology has to say about this time in history (it's mind-blowing), the dangers of "spiritual bypass," what we can do about it all, and how to talk to those who might have different viewpoints than we do. It's the perfect episode to air right before Thanksgiving and the holiday season kicks - a time during which you might be spending time with people who not only have different views than your own, but with people you usually don't have emotional, impassioned conversations with in the first place. Plus Dani has a fascinating theory on the return of chivalry, and what men's role is during this incredibly fascinating time. I'm so pumped about this conversation and know I'll be listening multiple times to really soak it in. And I was there in the first place!
Abiola Abrams is an award-winning author, advice columnist, motivational speaker, and certified life coach who has given her life-changing advice on networks from MTV and BET to the Discovery Channel and the BBC, as well as being a popular advice columnist for Essence and on sites like Match.com. Her book The Sacred Bombshell Handbook of Self-Love won Best Self-Help Book at the African American Literary Awards. As what she calls the "Midwife for Your Inspired Life," her online empowerment programs help women to answer and rock their callings, by turning self-love to self-launch. She is the founder of the women’s empowerment blog and web series on SacredBombshell.com and the podcast Spiritpreneur School, aka The Goddess Factory. (and yes, I know. She's a master at naming things. Just you wait 'till you listen to the episode)
Flashback for context: seven years ago, I was going through a huge life shift. Or, rather, I was about to go through a huge life shift - I just didn't know it yet. I had just moved to Venice Beach, gotten a steady job at one of my favorite fitness studios, finally gotten over a rough breakup, and was starting to feel more like myself than ever. I was starting to realize that maybe the life I'd planned out for myself wasn't the life I was really supposed to lead...and instead of being scary, that glimmer of a thought was actually starting to feel freeing. Basically, all of my channels were open for change - I just didn't know what was coming next.
It was also around this time I started running. Every week, I'd lace up my New Balances and drive to the long stretch of grass along Ocean Avenue and just go. I'd call them my thinking runs: the time that was just for me, where I could zone out and tune into what my heart was really saying.
One day before a thinking run, I was looking for a way to tune into the radio show I'd been listening to on my drive over (I miss the car radio in NYC!) and came across these new things called "podcasts." My first observation? There weren't a lot of female hosts. Finally, I found one. The Goddess Factory by Abiola Abrams. Looked promising. I could get down with goddess talk.
Well, I ended up becoming HOOKED. I found Abiola's enthusiastic yet no-bs outlook on life just the type of inspiration I needed. It felt like she wasn't just talking directly TO me, but like she was a friend who was giving me permission to be as passionate, deep, silly, funny, and BIG as I wanted to be. It was just what I needed to catapult me into the next stage of my life, which ultimately, has led me right here. It sounds kinda cheesy to say I couldn't have done it without her, but honestly - I couldn't have done it without her.
I LOVE each twist and turn of this conversation, talking everything from what to do when you feel like other people just don't quite GET what you're about yet and sticking to your guns when it seems like everyone else is getting ahead, to getting your voice heard even when other people are trying to manipulate it to their liking along the way. We also talk about being an extroverted introvert and getting swept up in the bigness of whatever's going on around you, and whether you're super extroverted or incredibly introverted, how to stay grounded AND enthusiastic even when life is demanding a lot of you (especially when things are really good and borderline overwhelming, which are the times that can sometimes throw us off the most if you're anything like me).
We seriously could have talked for ages - you'll hear, her energy and genuine enthusiasm are infectious. Make sure you download this one everywhere you listen to podcasts, because you're gonna wanna go back and re-listen later. I know I will.
Chances are, you've heard of Jordan Younger, aka "The Balanced Blonde." Maybe it's because of her best-selling book, Breaking Vegan. Maybe it's because of her lifestyle blog that's literally read by thousands of people worldwide weekly. Maybe it's because of her adorable clothing line, or uber-popular social media channels...
...Or maybe it's because you saw her on virtually every morning news circuit two years ago, when she "came out" to her readers saying her intense focus on healthy, vegan living had spiraled her into an eating disorder. One that had zero to do with veganism but everything to do with the way she was using the label to mask her unnatural obsession with eating as "pure" as possible. And one that, subsequently, made her the target of intense hate and even death threats from people convinced that she was speaking ill of the vegan community.
In reality, nothing could have been farther from the truth - or the real Jordan behind the news headlines and blog posts. Only 26 years old (as of today! Happy Birthday, Jordan!), Jordan's transition from The Blonde Vegan (her former blog name) to The Balanced Blonde made her a wellness "It Girl" virtually overnight. She's managed to navigate both the highest highs and lowest lows of being in the public eye with grace, humor, and integrity, all while unapologetically being, well, herself. She is bubbly like champagne, kind to the core, and just as enthusiastic about championing others' success as she is when it comes to pursuing her own. She takes her work seriously but takes reactions in stride, and treats each person she meets like a new friend in the making. In a scene that's becoming almost overly-saturated with a wellness-elite vibe, Jordan is a breath of fresh air and true authenticity.
After years of "knowing" each other from afar and running in so many of the same circles, Jordan and I finally got to met at the WANT Moving Forward Fearlessly event back in April. She crushed it (check out the recap here). And she's become a cherished friend ever since.
What I love about Jordan is that she doesn't apologize for being who she is, and she doesn't tailor herself to fit other people's liking. We share countless similarities - from our history with Orthorexia to our blogging backgrounds to our Libra birthdays - and I know I can always speak candidly to her about both the exciting moments and, well, b.s. that comes along with starting up your own purpose project from scratch.
The thing about Jordan is that while she’s gotten a lot of outward success in a relatively short amount of time, what impresses me the most about her is how completely transparent she is about her journey getting there, how she was feeling at the time, and how she currently navigates the extremes that come with both being a highly creative and driven person. It’s a lot easier to take risks and pivot when you’re lesser known or just starting out at whatever you’re doing, but once you’ve got all eyeballs all on you, it can be tough not only to take those risks in the fist place, but also manage the reactions of others you get in response to those risks. She’s able to laugh at herself, is incredible self-aware, and takes it all in stride without throwing out the sensitive parts of her that have made her so magnetic to so many people.
In this episode we talk about adrenaline addiction, the fear of success instead of fear of failure, finding the work style the works for you, how Jordan has learned to manage both the highs and lows of her business while staying true to herself, being a leader when you still feel like you're learning, and forging your own journey even when it's tempting to compare yourself to other people in your age range or career field. We also talk about some of her not-so-traditional health and spiritual adventures, the latter of which starts off with us laughing about it, but ends with a lesson all of us should remember about believing what we can't see.
I can't think of a more perfect, pragmatically positive person to kick off Season Two of the WANTcast.
The Balanced Blonde
Jordan at WANT's event in April
That time she was on Chelsea Handler's Snapchat
WANT to support the WANTcast? Click over to Amazon via this link, then shop as usual. I will receive a small-but-meaningful kickback, which means we can invest in things like sound editing, new equipment, and more. No extra charge to you. Easy as that!
Like this episode? Shoot me a comment below, leave a review on iTunes, share it on Facebook, tweet it out on Twitter, or post it on Instagram. Be sure to use the hashtags #WANTcast, #womenagainstnegativetalk, and/or #WANTyourself!
* SEASON ONE FINALE *
As you probably already realized…this episode is a little different. It’s just me today. I’m gonna try something new. It just so happens that by the time a lot of you listen to this, it’ll also be my 30th birthday. I decided that today, I’d jam about 30 lessons I’ve learned in 30 years. I know. A little headline-y. But hey. I always love reading those lists, and hearing what others have to say about the lessons they’ve learned, so I thought maybe you’d like to, too. And honestly, as I was thinking about it, there is a LOT of overlap in the lessons I learned in season one of the WANTcast. Some of these are a little more trivial than others – like, stuff about smog checks, for example – but when I was in the moment and didn’t know what to do or was thrown off my game, they seemed like really big moments. 30 lessons in 30 years. As full of a list as I could muster up. Here we go!
Benjamin Mathes episode
Kirsten Potenza episode
Ashlee Piper episode
Jessica Murnane episode
Many Lives, Many Masters
Using Your Intuition Vs. Being Triggered
I Love You And I Like You: The Ebbs And Flows Of Body Image
The Dreams We Woke Up From: An Ode To Transitions
Like this episode? Shoot me a comment below, leave a review on iTunes, share it on Facebook, tweet it out on Twitter, or post it on Instagram. Be sure to use the hashtags #WANTcast, #womenagainstnegativetalk, and/or #WANTyourself!
The end of August/beginning of September always symbolizes a fresh start to me - and this is the perfect episode to hopefully catapult you into whatever newness is in store for you in the season to come.
Emily Greener is the CEO and co-founder of I AM THAT GIRL, a global movement inspiring girls to be, love, and express who they are through education, content, and community. She’s been Emily and the IATG crew have taken their movement off-line into communities all over the world, motivating girls from SoCal to South Africa to live the lives they were meant to lead, judgement-free. For even more on Emily, you can check out her WANT Woman spotlight here.
In this episode we talk about navigating major turning points in life (like quarter-life crises and your "Saturn Return," which I've got links to read up on in the show notes), how to become a leader in whatever space you're in whether it's in work or in life, the power and scariness of going first, and of course, the chance meeting and turning-point moment that sparked the mass movement that is now I AM THAT GIRL.
Two super-powerful parts of this conversation in particular really struck a chord. The first is when Emily talks about how to hold space for others as a leader, and the moment when she realized that in order to be the leader she was striving to be, she would have to let go of some stuff first. The second? The mindset shift she experienced recently when it comes to success. We talk about the delicate balance between humility and recognizing your successes, and how she was able to find that happy medium and really let love in.
What I love about you guys, as WANTcast listeners and fellow WANT Women (and WANT men, too!) is that...it's so cool, you are natural-born leaders. I see it in the comments on the site, in the emails, on social, when I meet you in person - you can't ignore it. But just because you're a leader, or you maybe don't view yourself as a leader yet but WANT to be a leader, it doesn't mean you're immune to self-doubt, fears, or moments where nothing seems to make sense. If anything, you're probably even more sensitive to those moments BECAUSE of that leadership chip in your brain and hear. This episode might be just what you need to help you be the leader you know you've been inside all along.
Also, next episode will be the end of SEASON ONE of the WANTcast! I was thinking of doing something special and different - I know a lot of people have asked me how to start a podcast, or what my favorite things about doing a podcast are, or what I've learned - I don't know, would you want to hear an episode like that? Let me know - email me at email@example.com, or shoot me a comment on social, or drop me a line in the comments section of this post. I really want to do something cool for episode 20.
Alright, we'll talk about that later. For now, let's live in the moment. Episode 19. Enjoy.
I AM THAT GIRL
Find a chapter
Start a chapter
Emily's WANT Woman spotlight
Saturn return 101
Astrologer Danielle Beinstein on the WANTcast
Emily's DVF Award
Like this episode? Shoot me a comment below, leave a review on iTunes (the more reviews, the more Emily’s wisdom is spread), share it on Facebook, tweet it out on Twitter, or post it on Instagram. Be sure to use the hashtags #WANTcast, #womenagainstnegativetalk, and/or #WANTyourself!
Today’s guest is the lovely Ashlee Piper. Ashlee Piper is a political strategist turned vegan and eco-lifestyle expert, writer, and TV personality whose work has been featured in/on Refinery29, Apartment Therapy, Women's Health, Reader’s Digest, Mirror Mirror, Mind Body Green, VegNews, Vegetarian Times, AOL, NBC, CBS, ABC, and FOX News, to name a few. Piper is also a brand strategist and influencer for some of the world's most ethical and innovative companies.
One of the things I love about Ashlee is her versatility and mad smarts. I’m fascinated by Ashlee’s background as a political strategist and creative consultant, and how that has led to her building a name for herself as an “eco-lifestyle expert” over the years.
In this episode, we talk Ashlee’s winding career journey that ultimately led her to where she is today, how to pivot both personally and professionally when what you had or who you were no longer serves you, the importance of listening to your intuition and how to discern whether it’s your gut talking or if you’re being triggered, how personal and professional brand can, and maybe even should, be one and the same, and the social media frenzy to keep it hashtag-authentic vs. actually authentic.
We also talk about how to push through when you’re afraid of taking chances and asking questions, self-promotion, and how to deal with that nagging question we all get at one point or another: what will people think of me. She gets me a little more chatty than usual when we start talking about intuition, and at one point got me revealing a story about a time that I was trying to convince myself that I was following my intuition, but I really wasn’t – a story that I probably would have been more comfortable just writing about and calling a day (because, I don’t know, it’s less vulnerable than saying it out loud?), but I’m so glad that she turned the tables a little on me, because it opened us up to an even greater conversation around what it really means to be happy.
Whether you’re feeling solid in your career, romantic life, and personal life or you’re feeling like you’re on shaky ground somewhere in the mix, I can guarantee this episode will have something for you to take with you into your day and into your life, and make you even 2% more positive and proactive in being the you YOU know you’re meant to be.
A note on recent events in our country and world...
There is a dark cloud over our world right now and for weeks I was trying to decide what to do and how to proceed. And no, that doesn't mean using hashtags and prayers (although those should never be thrown aside because every teensy tinesy step counts). I realized that "doing something" meant talking to EVERYONE, asking questions, and ESPECIALLY informing myself when it comes to perspectives other than my own. This has been my MO for as long as I can remember, but this month has been a huge, grim reminder that I can do more and be better and search harder and dig deeper. Always.
However, there is a delicate balance. For me, someone who has been born into skin deemed "white" and therefore has never experienced racism firsthand, I've wanted to gain massive insight on how I can be an ally and work toward change beyond posting an article on FB or a hashtag on Instagram (both of which are still important and will continue to do). But I know that some people aren't ready to jump into explaining "How You Can Help" to me. The country is grieving right now. The world is grieving. And it's wrong to assume that just because one person wants answers, another person is ready (emotionally) to give them counsel.
And so I wanted to have a conversation about it....and so, so more.
Enter Erica Chidi.
Blending her skills as a doula, lactation counselor and chef, Erica guides expectant parents through their pregnancy and transition into parenthood. Her intuitive and gentle approach, coupled with her expertise has helped hundreds of families easily adjust into their new roles with support and confidence.
In 2013 Erica founded The Mama Circle, which focused on nurturing women into motherhood. The Mama Circle provided doula services, lactation counseling, nutritional support as well as prenatal, postpartum and parenting education programs.
Her newest venture, LOOM, is co-founded with Quinn Lundberg and set to open in Los Angeles in 2017. LOOM will be a wellness hub for pregnancy and parenting offering coaching, classes and community events.
Erica's first book on pregnancy and early motherhood will be published by Chronicle Books and released in fall 2017.
What I LOVE about this episode is how unexpectedly seamlessly all the topics flow together. From ways to practice gratitude during times of strain to how to prep for motherhood even if you don't really know if you're wanting kids yet to the generational wounds triggered by the most recent shootings and racist violence, this conversation with Erica is filled with wisdom, introspection, and inspiration to stay not only grounded, but balance being both empathetic and self-loving at the same time. Basically: what it means to confront the uncomfortable in all aspects of life.
If you are feeling low, please do not berate yourself for being so profoundly affected...even if you can't put words to it. Energy is neither created nor is it destroyed. Our world is at an empathetic standstill, which means that those who DO feel deeply might be feeling enough for many others who don't have the awareness or courage to sit with and process their own emotions. It's okay. Feel all you feel, and feel it deeply. And then once you've let it sink into your bones, like calcium to the skeleton, use that empathetic energy you've metabolized to TAKE SUCH STRONG AND POWERFUL action that the world can't help but be better for you being in it.
Thank you a million times over to Erica for sharing so much of herself with all of us. This episode is a must-listen. Be sure to listen until the end for a challenge for all WANTcast listeners - one of those small things that can make a HUGE difference.
So, you’re probably wondering about that title, “your vulva is a snowflake,” and the fact that today’s episode had the word “sex” in the title. You might even be thinking, oh this episode isn’t for me, I’m not in a relationship – or, I AM in a relationship and it’s a healthy relationship – or, I’m not looking for sex advice right now – or whatever might be coming into your brain because this episode has “sex” in the title. I want to make this clear – yes, we talk about the act of sex a little, but this episode is not about intercourse or partnership. Like, at all. This is, I mean, maybe one of the most all-inclusive, body-positive conversations I know I’ve ever had. And probably, you too.
Anne Hodder is a Certified sex educator, sex toy expert, and sex-positive PR & marketing pro at Hodder Media. She’s also been a friend of mine for about….5 years now?...I met her at the gym, in a spin class, and since then she has just been such a thoughtful, wise, and supportive presence in my life. I knew that when the time was right, I needed to have her on the pod. And today, more than ever, seems like the moment to talk as candidly, honestly, graphically, and altruistically about sex, sexuality, trauma, consent, desire, and body positivity as we do here in Episode 16.
So when you hear “sex educator,” if youre like me, you probably think about your health teacher in middle school and that one unit they did on basically the how tos of sex and our bodies.
Talking to Anne, I learned it’s, so, SO much more than that. And while most of us get the birds and the bees talk or maybe get that year or two of classes in school, it’s NOT enough. What Anne does isn’t just talking about intercourse – it’s about owning your body, your decisions, your emotions, and making empowered choices. Yes, sometimes in the bedroom – but a lot of what she talks about doesn’t even have to do with going between the sheets.
In this episode, we talk about shame, what we get wrong about sexual trauma – or at least what I did – and how MUCH that explains when it comes to the way we navigate our relationships and sexuality, her experiences with talking to high schoolers vs. adults, Anne’s journey into the sex journalism and then sex education world, judgement, dealing with embarassment, body hangups, sex positivity, body positivity, and why no emotion is mutually exclusive. That’s just the tip of the iceberg.
I came to a realization while listening back to this recording: Ann says "There are things we can and cannot say to people under 18. The thing we need to remember when talking with high school kids is that developmentally they're in a totally different place." And it donned on me that most of our FORMAL, ACTUAL SEX ED ends in high school health class. Which means that, for most of us, the education ends before we're actually experiencing the majority of our mature sexual life. The education ends - and the speculation begins. No wonder sex, sexuality, and everything even closely related seems like such a mystery - the information we have was given to us based on what we were actually able to process at the time! When we were kids! The rules around sex ed are so varied from region to region - I mean, I had "human development class" every single year from kindergarten to sixth grade, talking about everything from dating to kissing to drugs to yes, how babies are made. And then I got to middle school, and I distinctly remember we talked about sex in 7th grade. And then nothing in 8th, then barely anything in 9th, and that was it. In 9th grade, I was 14 years old. I was really lucky to have incredibly open-minded and candid parents, especially a mom I could talk to or ask anything. But I know most young women aren't as lucky growing up. Even with her guidance, I was still being handed a set of experiences and opinions - nothing from anyone actually trained to guide me through things from an educational non-parental perspective. So it makes sense to me that sex and sexuality are most commonly surrounded by shame, mystery, rebellion, etc. And moreOVER!, we only see sex portrayed a certain way in the media - USUALLY heterosexual, usually cisgender, and USUALLY two young, pristine-looking people. Very little body diversity, age diversity, gender diversity... that's why shows like sex and the city and girls were and are so groundbreaking.
This should go without saying, but this episode IS for mature audiences – we swear a bit, we talk not GRAPHICALLY in a vulgar way but in an anatomical way, and while Anne was cracking me up throughout the entire episode, it’s definitely not a set of subjects to be taken lightly. If you’re not into it, cool, or if you’re, I don’t know, my grandma listening (and she does listen) and you don’t really want to hear your granddaughter talking about this, that’s cool too! But on the flipside, I would say that this is an episode that should DEFINITELY be shared with anyone in your life who is open to listening because as we discuss on the episode, we live in a culture that dodges these important topics way too often and to our detriment.
Something I'm realizing now more than EVER is the power of community. So it's only fitting that today's episode is with community builder extraordinaire Audrey Bellis.
Audrey is a FORCE OF NATURE. A first-generation Latina, she's is shaping the future of Los Angeles, and specifically, Downtown LA by fostering the startup and tech communities as a founder of StartupDTLA and as a cofounder ofGRID110. Not only that, she’s linking creative female entrepreneurs as the founder of Worthy Women. Mayor Garcetti's office honored her as 1 of 5 "Inspiring Latinas of LA" and TechOutLA named her "a key player in the Eastside/DTLA tech movement." If there's anyone who knows how to create community and make a collective impact as visionary women in the world, it's this stunner.
In this episode, we dive deep into knowing your body and healing past trauma, why owning your worth is so important in everything from business to friendships, Audrey’s crazy medical complications that gave her a huge wake up call – and her sort of Eat Pray Love experience that helped facilitate that, and why it’s so important that we’re never, ever, ever done with the work, even if we think we’ve reached success or that we know it all.
We also talk building community, making friends as an adult, finding the people who we connect with on the deepest levels, which can be hard sometimes as an adult, and so much more.
HEADS UP: this episode contains graphic descriptions of Audrey's health scare. So if you're squeamish, you might want to skip over the part about 15 or so mins in where she's talking about the bathtub. We don't shy away from anything here on WANT - it's so important to me that these podcasts tell unedited, unglossy stories (because life is unedited and unglossy). But you've been warned ;)
If you follow me on Instagram or read WANT often, you know I'm a sucker for a good fitness experience. And it's not because I'm super passionate about how to do a lunge or because of any sort of caloric burn: just like anything else worthwhile, fitness, to me, is all about how it makes you feel.
Today’s guest is a long time in the making (we may or may not have tried to record this 7xs, nbd), someone whose journey I’ve had the pleasure of witnessing over the last five years: Kirsten Potenza, the co-founder of POUND.
POUND is a workout unlike anything else I’ve ever experienced - IF YOUR IDEA of a workout looks more like head-banging at a rock concert than logging miles on a treadmill, then POUND may just be your fitness spirit animal. The concept behind this killer workout is simple yet genius: a full-body cardio jam session using weighted Ripstix to drum to the music for 45 crazy minutes. I live for music, so when I was first introduced to POUND, and Kirsten, I felt like I’d found a workout meant for me.
The POUND story was born from struggle and a journey to self-realization that involved finding out what was missing for both Kirsten and co-founder Cristina. When they met, they were both living in extremes - Kirsten, in particular, was a work-a-holic and a play-a-holic with zero sense of balance.
After realizing there was a shift that needed to be made, POUND and the POUND philosophy was born: life can’t be fully enjoyed without balance and nurturing, and if you give up on self-improvement, you give up on yourself. There is always something you can do, big or small, to be the you YOU know you're meant to be.
In this episode we talk Kirsten’s past with negativity and her catalyst for a new way of thinking, going from feeling completely alone to being a community builder extraordinaire, why all "fitspiration" is NOT created equal, and the immense value in going slow in whatever you feel passionate about.
I’m thrilled to have her on the WANTcast and to be able to introduce you to her.
Like this episode? Shoot me a comment below, leave a review on iTunes (the more reviews, the more Kirsten’s awesomeness is spread), share it on Facebook, tweet it out on Twitter, or post it on Instagram. Be sure to use the hashtags #WANTcast, #womenagainstnegativetalk, and/or #WANTyourself!
It Gets Better Project
Jay on Dance Moms
I Am Cait segment
Stone Butch Blues
North Carolina restroom laws
Kroger being awesome
Daniel Golman's Emotional Intelligence
Being Boss podcast w/ Jay
I am an emotional sponge.
I walk into a room and can instantly feel whether people are relaxed or tense. I can speak two words to you and feel what’s going on. And you can bet yer bottom dollar that I internalize whatever energy is swirling around me.
For the longest time, I felt like an outsider – and truly weirded out by the fact that things as small as people laying on their car horns in rush-hour traffic would leave me shaken for a good few minutes.
And then I found out that not only was I not alone, but that I could work with what I’ve got – and it was my greatest asset in this world.
If you’ve been reading and listening for a while, it *probably* doesn’t come as a surprise to you that I’m into personality tests, personality indicators, and the psychology behind personality types. I find any chance to learn more about the inner workings of others, and myself, absolutely fascinating.
About 6 years ago, I stumbled upon the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (here’s one you can take forfree!), took the test, and the results completely blew my mind. All this time, when I had been thinking “Oh, I’m so different. Oh I don’t fit in,” berating myself for feeling awkward in certain situations while in others I’d completely own it, or the big understanding gap there seemed to be between myself and certain people, or why I’d get into the same ruts over and over…now EVERYTHING started to make sense.
THEN I read a book that was recommended to me called the
Person by Elaine Aron. I think I cried when I read it the first
time through. Because again, this was so much of who I
was – that I was either trying to fight against or was
struggling to understand/make others understand – I had just never
had words to describe it.
Introvert, Dear is the #1 website and community dedicated to introverted personality types AND HSPs. This site is followed by literally hundreds of thousands, the community is SO strong, and it’s a resource that’s really helped me when it comes to not just understanding why I am the way I am, but communicating who I am to others (and understanding THEM better, too).
Introvert Dear is the brainchild of Jenn Granneman, a teacher, writer, introvert expert, and fellow INFJ/HSP. So basically, I knew I had to have her on the podcast (especially since I get asked so often what the heck these acronyms even mean).
Here’s the deal, in a nutshell: Myers Briggs personality types are broken down into four components – introverted vs extroverted, intuitive vs sensing, thinking vs feeling, and perceiving vs judging.
A lot of people will just focus on the introvert/extrovert part of the equation, but Myers Briggs, and Jenn’s site, dissects the fine nuance between each specific combination.)
There’s a big theme in this episode of the number one lesson every introvert (and HSP) needs to learn in order to thrive. Even if you’re not either, take a listen – we’ve all got a little bit of introvert in us, and WAY more of us are HSPs than we realize, we just never talk about it.
At the best, you’ll learn about yourself. At the very least, you’ll definitely learn about someone you care about.
Take the personality type test
Introvert Dreams coloring book
Quiet by Susan Cain
The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine Aron
Like this episode? Shoot me a comment below, leave a review on iTunes (the more reviews, the more Jenn’s awesomeness is spread), share it on Facebook, tweet it out on Twitter, or post it onInstagram. Be sure to use the hashtags #WANTcast, #womenagainstnegativetalk, and/or #WANTyourself!
She had me at "hello." And by "hello"...I mean lip balm.
Today’s episode is with Adina Grigore, who, if you DON’T know, you’re going to WANT to know after we’re through here. Adina is the founder of S.W. Basics, one of my absolute FAVORITE all natural skincare lines – and the author of Skin Cleanse: The Simple, all-natural Program for Clean, Calm, Happy Skin.
So, funny thing about me and Adina – I actually fell in love with her before I even met her, and what’s even weirder is that it wasn’t through social media or a podcast – it was because at my former editorial job, someone sent us a pack of her lip balms. You know how sometimes you’ll see someone from afar and think, I need to be friends with this woman? That’s how I felt when I saw the lip balms.
I know. What a weirdo, right? But here's the thing: there was something so special and unique about the S.W. Basics brand that felt so personal, so down to earth, I knew that could only come from this badass woman founder who was steering the ship. This podcast is actually the very first time we talked, and I think you’ll be able to hear it, she just has this way of making you feel so at ease and like you’ve known her forever. It's no wonder she's in the business of making people feel good in the skin they're in.
In this episode we talk about the correlation between skin and body image, the trajectory that took her from dancing at The Ailey School to having a skincare line that's in Target stores nationwide, dealing with skin issues as an adult and the stigma that surrounds it, and why Adina is so passionate about not doing this ONE specific thing that basically everyone does in order to grow their business (hint: it's kind of like Kanye West's behavior).
She also gets me being more of a Chatty Cathy than usual, but I couldn't help myself - she's one of those infectiously passionate and all around rad people you could talk to forever. (But I did you a favor and kept "forever" to under an hour.)
Let's do this thang!
Like this episode? Shoot me a comment below, leave a review on iTunes (the more reviews, the more Adina’s awesomeness is spread), share it on Facebook, tweet it out on Twitter, or post it on Instagram. Be sure to use the hashtags #WANTcast, #womenagainstnegativetalk, and/or #WANTyourself!
S.W. Basics makeup remover
The Ailey School
Adina's blog post - "You're Really Hot. No, Really."
Womens Leadership Conference
WANTcast on Youtube!
Hold the phone. Stop the presses. We are, officially, IN THE DOUBLE DIGITS. When you’re creating one new pod every three weeks, getting to double digits feels like forever – so, to me, this is a huge deal (we’re heading towards the 6-month mark!).
Especially because of this one little not-so-secret: I was scared out of my mind to start this podcast. I had a smidge of sound editing experience under my belt, had NO clue how to record with someone over Skype, and forget about even getting the tech stuff up and running. This podcast has taught me to be ballsy and just make things happen – because once you’re ballsy a few times in a row, it starts to get easier and easier.
I will say, it’s a lot easier to be ballsy when you’ve got people in your corner. And today’s guest is a super special one, because she has been in WANT’s corner since literally the very first email conversation we had (she was actually the person who told me, “You HAVE TO START A PODCAST” and never let me forget she was waiting for it). She’s now become a dear friend of mine, a woman I admire endlessly – and, well, you probably already listen to her podcast religiously.
Jessica Murnane is the wellness Wonder Woman behind JessicaMurnane.com, host of the wildly popular One Part Podcast, and, the MOST exciting, author of a soon-to-be released full-on plant-based cookbook with Harper-Wave in 2017!
If Jessica looks familiar, it might be because she’s been on WANT before. After being diagnosed with Endometriosis and receiving a pretty crazy ultimatum from her doctors, Jessica decided to try overhauling her diet to see if she could heal herself naturally. Fast forward to today, and Jessica now has zero of those debilitating endometriosis symptoms and follows a full-on plant based diet.
In this episode we talk about the HUGE thing on Jessica’s mind lately, something I don’t think we talk about nearly enough in our culture if even at all: letting go of the past and what that actually looks and feels like in the body. We also talk endo, mendo (yup), listening fiercely to your body, and Jessica’s refreshingly honest take on motherhood. (This episode also contains a little bit of quasi-gangsta-rap-language, so if you’re sensitive to that, you’ll be getting fair warning beforehand.)
One Part Podcast
Jessica on WANT (“Positivity is…”)
Endo in men
0 to 100/The Catch Up – Drake
On Never Wanting To Be Pregnant (from jessicamurnane.com)
Jessica’s octopus plates
And just for fun: Watch Drake Perform At A Bar Mitzvah
Today's guest is Komal Minhas: an Indo-Canadian film producer, writer, and investor. She has been deeply committed to improving the lives of women and girls globally, and champions this work with her continued investments and work in film and storytelling through her company KoMedia Inc. Most recently, Komal's been working as producer and co-founder of Dream, Girl.
Dream, Girl tells the inspiring stories of female entrepreneurs and CEOs in order to empower the next generation of girl bosses to dream bigger. The Dream, Girl movement was brought to life by director Erin Bagwell, and close to 2,000 backers on Kickstarter, with $100k pledged. This is the kind of documentary we SO NEED right now.
The film is set to release in the spring of 2016, but the amount of momentum behind this film right now is absolutely extraordinary. To some people it might make more sense to run this closer to the film, but I wanted to give you a first look so you can get on the action before it hits big and trust me, IT WILL HIT BIG.
Komal is taking the Dream, Girl movement and its feminist message global to empower more women and girls to dream big in business, media, and beyond.
In this episode, we talk about the sort of feminist renaissance we’re having at the moment and why this point in time matters, going big and making your dream your reality, the health challenge Komal’s been facing in the mist of producing this dream project and how to take care of yourself when things get tough, mentorship, being ballsy – and maybe my favorite part of this episode, making friends as an adult and the power of female friendships.
She is beautiful, inside and out, and even though this was literally our VERY first time talking, I already feel like I have a new friend. And I feel like that’s part of Komal’s magic – her magnetism, enthusiasm, and inclusive personality combined with this drive you can just feel.
This is a !!special!! edition of the WANTcast: The Women Against Negative Talk podcast, episode seven.
I’m going to keep this intro short and sweet: You'll notice the timing is off on this one. This is actually an extra episode. Last WANTcast I asked you all if you’d like an extra episode before the new year and the typical three-week mark, and the answer was a resounding YES. So, here you go!
What I decided to do is call up a friend of mine, actress and activist Sascha Alexander, who’s actually been on WANT before, and just see where the conversation took us. Which, turns out, always leads to the best conversations.
We end up talking about upper limits, success hangups, pole dancing, empowerment, how to define yourself, endings, beginnings, what it’s like to go viral - and I end up revealing some news on here that I wasn’t really planning on. Lots of laughing, lots of deep talk…everything I love most. Endings and beginnings.
I hope you all know how much I love you for listening and for joining me on this journey this year. It has been indescribable. Next year is bringing a lot of newness - think offline events, tons of really exciting WANTcast guests, and a couple things I can’t quite talk about yet - so be sure to go to the site and subscribe to weekly emails so you stay in the know. Let’s get down to it. Here’s the most off the fly WANTcast yet :)
Today's WANTcast guest is someone who's been on my list for a while now: goal coach Jacki Carr.
Jacki’s become a highly sought-after pro in her arena who's helped hundreds of people across the globe not only reach their goals, but actually craft exactly what those goals look like, why they matter, and a path to them that is unique to every single person – personal goals, professional goals, whatever.
I've met a lot of fantastic people over the internet through the years (holy jeez, just realized I made my first virtual friend at 12. Almost two decades. How did that happen?! [ps. it was a 14 year old girl who loved RENT as much as I did, natch]). What's interesting about Jacki is that we actually should have met in person. We've got about a zillion mutual friends, from fitness instructors we've both worked with to former Lululemon employees (Jacki used to work for Lulu) to various personalities in the Venice/Santa Monica region (where we both called home for one point in time), even people I've met through work that I'd never expect to have a mutual connection with - Jacki is our mutual connection.
And it's not hard to see why: Jacki is gregarious to the core and electricity personified. People who meet her are swept up by her enthusiastic and vivacious personality and get hooked on her attention connection. In other words, they come for the spark and stay for the soul. Jacki has the ability to bring out the best in whoever she meets, whether it's in person or virtually.
And yet, we'd never met. I was nervous to talk to her one-on-one for the very first time, as when you've connected with someone from afar you sometimes get nervous it won't be that great in person...
Boy, was I wrong. We chatted like old friends, and it truly felt like I'd known her a lifetime ago. I know I'm not the only one who has felt this way, which is why I think Jacki is such a powerhouse: she makes everyone around her feel like family.
The way I structure my podcasts is very, very loosely - I do a bit of research, I gather a few points I'd like to discuss, and then we just go. I end up rarely needing my notes, as each conversation unfolds so beautifully and naturally, and the women on the WANTcast really have a knack for being a next-level open book. With Jacki, it was just like that. I'd read somewhere that she identified with being an extrovert while her best friend and business partner, Mary Beth LaRue, was an introvert, and as an introvert myself, I was curious to hear the other side of the story when it comes to relationships with different personality types. What unfolded was even better than what I could have imagined. Her husband, turns out, is an introvert as well, and Jacki and I got to dive into the nuances of what happens when we're with our opposites, both in love and in life. Having grown up in an entirely extroverted family and always been attracted to extroverted personalities, I was sucked in by this (in a good way!).
Other big things we talked about? Making friends later in life. As Jacki put it, "making new friends in your 30s is gnarly." She's just relocated to Denver after living in LA for quite some time, and we got down and dirty into the topic of navigating life transitions, from business rebranding to personal rebranding to pregnancy and even those little-big stages we all go through in life. Basically, the through-line of this episode comes down to one thing: rebranding your life.
What I love is that Jacki’s not a life coach, and she’s not a therapist, she’s got a passion for GOAL SETTING and ACHIEVING specifically that just exudes from every single thing she does. I found this episode not just uplifting... but I was sitting for a WHILE after this call reflecting on my own goals and visions, and how I can use what I’ve been given to make my own unique impact both personally and professionally. I thought about the stages I've been through, and what kinds of changes I might want to make in the future. Hopefully, it’ll do the same for you too.
*Little note: this is technically supposed to be the last episode of 2015, but I’m thinking that maybe we throw in an extra episode before the year is up! Not really sure what that looks like yet, but if you’d like that extra episode, shoot me a tweet, or leave me an Instagram comment and just say "YES!" I’ll know what you mean.
The Neshama Project has developed almost a cult following here in LA, and it was born out of her desire to bring her passion for educating others about a culture she loved and wanting to make the world a healthier, brighter place. Rachelle inspires me because she’s not your typical yoga pro or even your typical entrepreneur. She’s seen a LOT, which we’ll get into in this episode, and she always just rode on the feeling that she was meant to do something important with her life, without even knowing exactly what that meant.
As you’ll hear, and as you probably already know about me, I’m not just interested in the light easy breezy moments or the dark rough spots, I’m most fascinated by the intersection of the two and how they can, as the tagline says, help you move forward fearlessly onto the path you're meant to follow.
Just a heads up, we do discuss some dark topics in this podcast, namely suicide. So if that’s a trigger point for you, you might want to skip through minutes 20-30ish or just skip this one altogether, or just mentally prepare yourself. YOU know yourself best.
In this episode, we talk about the fallacy of the necessity of the 5-year plan, turning ideas into action, being a people person and the necessary boundaries that come with that, cultivating your intuition, moving forward through what seem like the worst of challenges life can throw at you, and finding not only meaning but a lesson in every single moment, even if it’s not clear at first. Oh, and of course, before this episode, I internet-stalked her and read a sentence somewhere about a Hummus challenge she took. So obviously, I HAD to ask about that.
If you’ve ever experienced extreme lows, loss, have a sense of adventure but don’t know how to cultivate that, or are interested in building a community that speaks to who you are and who you want to be, this is the episode for you.
This is the time of year we’re the most contemplative about where we are in our own lives - and it’s for that reason I’m so excited to introduce you to today’s guest. Lynn Chen is an actress, activist, and food blogger who’s been seen in countless TV shows and films, serves as an ambassador for the National Eating Disorders Association, and has not one but TWO blogs. The Actor’s Diet, which Lynn started in 2009 as a sort of journal to help her make peace with her food after years of eating disorders, it’s now one of the most influential food blogs on the web, with some of the most longevity at that. AND, she’s got a podcast, the Actor’s Diet Podcast! Her other blog is called Thick Dumpling Skin, a phenomenal body-image blog that’s centered around the Asian American community.
We ended up talking for close to two hours – Lynn shared so much of herself with me, and with us, that I really, really wanted to be mindful to do each word and thought and story and lesson justice. She’s in a majorly transitional time in her career right now, and that can be really scary – I went through the same thing multiple times – where you’ve pretty much built your identity being one thing, and then you decide to change directions from that. I don’t care what kind of career your in or what your life looks like, it’s something we all experience, but we usually hear people talking about it AFTER it’s happened. I’m honored Lynn opened up about this to me.
We dive deep in this episode, but the one theme that kept popping up was learning how to accept what is, and then moving forward from there. We talk about the way blogging’s shifted over the last six years, Lynn’s choice to move away from acting and why success isn’t always what it seems, the lessons she learned while she was trying to get pregnant, and the unexpected strategy she’s used to cope with everything from the sudden death of her father a few years back to her long history with eating disorders. We also talk about rejection, comparison, and how to make your mark by being exactly who you are.
It gets deep and it gets emotional and we both cry a little, but I promise, just like anything else with WANT, this is really about hope, taking what’s handed to you, and asking yourself, where can I go from here.
Today’s guest is Negin Singh, the Founder and Artistic Director of cARTel: Collaborative Arts LA, and currently the Director of Inspiration (real title) for top Augmented Reality developer DAQRI. She’s been featured on the White House Blog, spoken for the big-wigs at places like NASA, and was named one of the top 30 Indian Entrepreneurs under 30 by India Current Magazine.
If you’ve ever wanted to create something in your life – whether it’s theater, a business, a product, whatever – you KNOW how many hoops there are to jump through and how often it is that the good stuff never gets out into the world simply because people don’t have the resources or funds to let their extraordinary talent or vision live. As you’ll hear from Negin, cARTel was formed to solve that problem and take away those barriers that usually end up preventing really fantastic art from every even happening. They’ve put on critically acclaimed concerts, film festivals, circus and theater events, live radio shows, spoken word performances, art installations…most of which have been held in unexpected places like parks, vintage stories, pool parties, living rooms, and pretty much any place that’s anything BUT traditional.
Back to DAQRI - if you're anything like me, you read the words "Augmented Reality" and thought...what? Basically, as Negin taught me, AR is where technology meets the “real world.” Think Google Glass and projects like that. The fact that Negin is the leader when it comes to creating such literally life-changing, visionary projects absolutely blows my mind.
Negin is actually a friend of mine from college. I’ve had the honor of watching her grow and flourish for the last decade and completely shift the way others think about what it means to CREATE. What's more, is that every step of the way, she's championed other artists, other woman, and even when we were competing for the same roles, she never let me forget what a joy it was just to be "it it" together.
In this episode, we talk about body image and fitness experiments, Negin’s tweendom in Dubai (and her most embarrassing childhood memory), capitalizing on what makes you different, recognizing your privilege, and how she turned her frustration with the system she was supposed to prescribe to into a movement so big that their annual music festival got called out by a certain “-chella” festival ;)
We also talk about not fitting in, not following rules, and about how you really don’t have to have a degree or background in something in order to succeed at it.
If you’re a creative of ANY type, you’ve ever felt different, or you’ve ever wondered how you’re going to get your message out into the world, I think you're going to really resonate with Episode 003.
Today's WANTcast guest is Danielle Beinstein, an LA-based Astrologer, meditation coach, spiritual counselor, and co-founder of the New Moon Circle in Venice Beach, CA, which gives women a sacred space to set intentions, form bonds, and heal their lives from the inside out (on the new moon of each month, of course).
I first met Danielle Beinstein at a cocktail party a few months ago, and by the end of the night we’d pretty much locked down our first friend date because I could just tell this was a woman I needed to have in my life . It was probably after she told me that she was, like me, an introvert usually confused for an extrovert AND an HSP, or a highly sensitive person.
For those of you who are thinking this might be getting a little too hippie dippie groovytime for you, I promise you, you’re in for a surprise. I am, admittedly, a little hippie dippie groovytime myself, but the reason I was drawn to Dani was…she’s got this intellectual, pragmatic, reason-based side of her that is able to boil down more esoteric matters to be incredibly accessible, relatable, and highly personal. Turns out, she has a crazy academic and business background, so something I really wanted to talk to her about was how this highly off-the-beaten path career took shape, when it was nothing that was anywhere where she thought she wanted to be her entire life.
In this episode, we talk about how to balance being an introvert with extroverted tendencies, adapting and protecting yourself as an HSP, or highly sensitive person, and Dani’s windy, highly untraditional path from living in Manhattan in a super competitive world to ending up in politics to finding her way into the entertainment industry, to trying out tech, to a degree in Spiritual Psychology (which I didn’t know was a thing) from university of Santa Monica and ”coming out of the astrology closet”, She also talks about following your heart, conscious friendships, and, my favorite, what the planets in your chart say about where you are in your own personal growth cycle which will NOT look like anyone else’s.
Bonus? Dani’s also giving away a copy of the New Moon Circle journal on the site! Head over there for all the details and some little teaser images which are absolutely stunning.
One more little public service announcement, there’s some pretty fun stuff going on in these next couple months, so be sure to subscribe to pod, and to the WANT newsletter so we can share the fun together, there are some super cool events coming up, and way more weekly content, so I’d love to see you there.