Struggling with feedback that challenges your sense of self? Join us as we dive deep into mastering self-awareness with Jillian Harris, the visionary behind Jillian Harris Design and Jilly Academy, co-founder of Jilly Box, and an inspiring mother and partner. We explore the profound impact of self-reflection and adopting an objective view of oneself to shine light on and overcome personal shadows.
For those yearning for a life filled with happiness, joy, and peace, this episode is packed with actionable insights. Learn the art of effective communication, which not only prevents pushing people away but also establishes a firm ground to articulate your needs and desires.
Are you caught between being genuine and conforming to others’ expectations? Spoiler alert: authenticity wins! Don't miss out on this enlightening conversation with Jillian Harris where we reaffirm the power of staying true to oneself.
Originally published May 2023
Today’s guest is the talented and dynamic Jillian Harris. Known for her creative flair, Jillian shows up to this podcast as authentically as ever. Jillian is a mother, partner, and an entrepreneur who wears many hats. She’s the founder of Jillian Harris Design and the Jilly Academy, and the co-founder of the Jilly Box. In this episode, we dive into Jillian’s life and talk about what drives her, how she balances her various roles, and the challenges she’s faced in building her successful businesses. We also discuss hardships coming out of the pandemic, mental health, mental illness, and mental breakdowns (or Menti B’s as Jill calls them) . We dive into what Jill’s been doing to focus on wellness, renew her passions, support her team, and thrive as a human. We hope you enjoy this episode with Jillian Harris.
First Session exists to help you find the right therapist for you so you can get help now. We deeply believe that the fit between you and your therapist is the most important factor for a positive outcome. First Session is committed to making your search for a therapist user friendly, transparent, and trustworthy.
Jillian Harris (00:00:00):
And those days that you do have the meltdowns, I mean, it's an emotion. Emotions are there for a reason, and it's okay to get mad, sad, scream, yell. I think the goal is to be happy most of the time. That's sort of the goal, I think.
Rob Pintwala (00:00:22):
Welcome to Actualize a podcast focused on the intersection of performance, ambition, and mental health. I'm Rob Pen, and I'm joined by my co-host Kim Foster Yardley.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:00:36):
Rather than fixate on the wins and successes, our mission is to uncover the whole picture of the being behind the performance. Join us as we interview top performers across business, sport, and the arts.
Rob Pintwala (00:00:51):
Actualize is presented by first session. Have you ever considered trying therapy or simply just wanna level up in your personal or professional life? I started first session back in 2019 to help Canadians find the right mental health professional for them. Since then, we've connected thousands of Canadians with the right therapist, and I'm really passionate about helping each individual find the right fit in the therapist for them. We spent hours and hours interviewing therapists across Canada, and each one of them has a professional video for you to take a look at while you decide who might be the right fit for you. Check us firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:01:28):
Actualize is also presented by the Mental Game Clinic. The Mental Game Clinic was founded by myself, Kim Foster Yardley. I combined my 20 years of experience as a clinical psychologist with my passion for sports psychology, and I built a team of therapists who specialize in working with high performers, Olympians and founders find us at the mental game. Me
Rob Pintwala (00:01:58):
Today's guest is Jillian Harris. Jillian is a mother, partner, storyteller and quintessential busy bee who pours her heart and soul into every endeavor. She's the founder of Jillian Harris Design and the Jill Academy and the co-founder of the Jilly Box. Jillian is passionate about love, family, philanthropy, fashion, and much more. Topics we covered include what it's like to always be judged on social media, the life of an influencer, being at the helm of a growing business, being a female entrepreneur and more. I hope you enjoy today's episode with Jillian Harris.
Okay, Jill, we are going to jump right into it. You run a business but you come across as super personal almost like whoever's watching on social media's, friend. And a couple weeks ago I was on your Instagram stories trying to prepare for this conversation, and I, we were just chatting.
I kind of hit the jackpot as far as you sharing a lot of what's been going on in your life. And you mentioned that some folks in your audience or who, who are following you are been calling you greedy. But you, you also said that like you're running a business now and that, you know, you're supporting your employees. I'm just wondering like when people who are sending you these, these kind of comments that are super direct and and rude how does that, you come across as someone who can just brush stuff off, you know, but how does that actually sit with you,
Jillian Harris (00:03:33):
<Laugh>? Well it's funny that I'm talking with both of you about this with, especially in relation to your, your background in mental health because at the early days, any kind of comment would send me off. I would get anxiety, I would fester over, it, would completely side rail my day. And then eventually I just realized like that discomfort was just so debilitating. I just had to figure out a way to get through it, a for my own mental health, my family, and also my business. Like I just had to deal with it. And I realized that it comes with the business. When you share your life and your story and you're so vulnerable, you're actually more open to criticism. People feel like they can judge you more. They can have opinions and they can just sort of say whatever they want. And when you have 1.3 million followers, you're gonna get all, you're gonna get all different kinds of, of opinions.
You're gonna get people that love you no matter what they're gonna, you're gonna get people that hate you no matter what. And so I've come to realize that you really just can't please everybody, which is very difficult for me because I'm a people pleaser. So that was very difficult and I've learned to just sort of compartmentalize it. Remember that it's just a job. I try to focus on the, on the good comments. I've tried to have balance and Covid really, I think changed me for the better. But it had to get worse before it got better because I, I went through so much change during Covid, mostly as it relates to like Black Lives Matter and inclusivity and d e I, like, there was so much that I was missing as a brand and as a human that I was unaware of.
And so I crashed big time during covid. Like Covid itself wasn't even the main issue for me. It was everything that came after that. And I really had to unpack so much about myself and my business, and I had a lot of guilt. And so, and I, I worked so hard to try to fix myself or fix my business. And eventually I got to a point where I just had to swing that pendulum and come back to this place where I was like, I am human. I'm gonna screw up. But I also know I have a good heart and I, I can do this. Like I, that the, that learning and that growth never ends. But at the same time, I was beating myself up, taking every anti-racism course every, like, I was like, oh my gosh, like, what is going on?
And so anyhow, what the, to speak to what you're asking, how do I deal with it? Recently, as my team has grown and I've gone through so much criticism and being called out and also screwing up and whatnot, I have had to take a step back and not get offended as much. But part of the way that I've protected myself also, and I think you're gonna talk about this later, is I've started filtering myself more. So I'm, I'm not, I'm not on social as much, and when I am, I am not as, I'm not as filter free. And, and that in a combination of my business changing so many meetings and whatnot I'm just not on Instagram as much. So anyways, how do I take it? When I heard this comment, I was so sad. And I tried to let it go becau but it was, it was more of a personal attack, not an attack on the business.
And sometimes I wonder, am I greedy? Am I greedy? Because when, what, a lot of what I learned in 2020 and whatnot isn't just, wasn't just anti-racism, but was capitalism and the social construct of capitalism and the fact that I am a type and I am an entrepreneur and I've been learn, I've been, I was trying to make money since I was like five years old. Like, I literally have pictures of me like trying to sell our whole household, working at my, like I've been, and why, how was that in my brain? My parents were entrepreneurs, but somehow it was in me from a young age that I had to make money. And that is a social construct. I think a lot of people are trying to wrap their head around right now of like careers and working. And like right now, the the economic divide is, is, is it was really big.
And I'm looking around when people are saying these words like, this is just greedy. And just to give context to our listeners is we wanted to try out a new Instagram feature where you could subscribe and our, our followers would pay like $2 a month or something to subscribe and they would get exclusive content. So so anyways, when, when somebody says the we're greedy, I look around and I think like, am I, like I do have a beautiful house and a farm and I can pay for my groceries and I have a nice car, which is all dented up cause I'm a bad driver, but I've got all these things. And so like, do I need to be making more money? Do I really need to be like, maybe this is greedy? And so I really, I really do fester about it and I know that I'm not, but at the same time, I think we're all just trying to unpack like, you know, what is, what is rich and how much is enough and how, why do I have to work so hard and what is, what am I doing with this money?
So it's, it's super, super long-winded answer. I'm gonna take all nine min 90 minutes with this, but I think what a lot of people don't understand is that, like you said, it's not just me. The business that we have created is Jillian Harris, this person, right? And people have this connection with me as a person, and that I am so grateful for, but it, it, it, it is a business and between the Jillian Harris Instagram accountant website and Jill Box and Jillian Academy there's 30 employees, there are CFOs, there are account managers, there are project managers, there are marketing managers, procurement, fulfillment CEOs like office managers, hr, like we've got a massive team doing like real people jobs. And I think it's hard for people to understand that when we want to introduce a new business model into the, into the world it's, it's not just because I want another vacation, which I'm not gonna apologize for.
I would like another vacation, but it's also because I'm trying to build a business. And that's what businesses do. Businesses are looking for other sources of revenue, of income, how to grow, how to evolve the times. And so anyways, to answer your question, how do I deal with it sometimes? Okay. But specifically that Instagram story that you saw, and maybe you can share that with, with your viewers and listeners. I had a, I had a, a breakdown and I think it was just a lot of things that were piling on top of each other, and that was just sort of the, the straw that broke the camel's back. And I just had like a full on, I, I don't know if you're gonna like this, but I called him Min Be Ament, be a mental breakdown. And I honestly thought Justin was gonna call like the help mental health services on me. I was like, I was, I'm like, I cannot do this anymore. So yeah, I don't always cope well I'm trying to learn new coping skills, but I think it's important for people that are listening to know that like it's, it may look all fluffy and wonderful, but it's not always that way. I have mental breakdowns freak out crying, like spazzing out too. And I don't know, is that the nature of the business? I don't know. <Laugh>, I dunno if it's supposed to be that way. <Laugh>.
Rob Pintwala (00:10:51):
Yeah. So yeah,
Kim Foster Yardley (00:10:53):
I mean I, I I just, I'm so relieved that you've been this honest and open about this because so often when I work, especially with women, they have, I, I dunno if it's because I'm a perfectionist that I attract the perfectionist, but I, I kind of have the people pleasing perfectionist day type women working with me, and it's either 200% or nothing. And so they, they kind of feel like they're not allowed to feel vulnerable. They're not allowed to have stressed out moments. And, and in you sharing this, you're just kind of giving us permission as well to have our mini freakouts that we all have, because running a business is a lot of pressure. There's no way around that. Yeah.
Jillian Harris (00:11:35):
And like, I want, sometimes we have breakdowns like that, like there, there's a reason why we have like, there the body needs to let loose. Like the body sometimes just needs to go like this is kinda like, sometimes you just need to do that. So yeah, <laugh>,
Rob Pintwala (00:11:47):
I've, I've been so like, curious about the intersection of like being not even like an actor or like someone on tv, but someone who's like built a brand on social media and I think like is vulnerable on social media, like you definitely are and have been a lot. And how that, like, you, you very, I'm like looking on Netflix and like hbo, I'm like, where's the documentary about influencer mental health? Like, like, it, it, like,
Jillian Harris (00:12:17):
I don't think it's a health, I don't think it's a healthy career. I wouldn't say like, I think there's a lot of great parts that come from it, but I wouldn't say it's necessarily one. Like if you're looking for a career that supports your mental health, I would not go down that career path. However, if you wanna travel a lot and like there's certain things that are great about it and certain things that aren't, but yeah, I would love to see that Netflix documentary as well, because it is really interesting because you are building a business on you as a person, and the more vulnerable you are and the more you share about your intimate details of your life, potentially the more successful you can be, which becomes addicting yet even scarier. It's really strange.
Rob Pintwala (00:12:57):
And did you, like, did you sort of have any guidance or like anyone that you looked up to who was more in the spotlight as you were kind of, you know, just kind of becoming known and starting to like think about like kind of building a business? Like is there, or has this been a lot of intuition in just, you know, you being you the whole time?
Jillian Harris (00:13:20):
So I did a podcast recently and somebody asked me a similar question, a little bit different just about like, how did I get to where I am? And I like to say that I live my life sort of like a science experiment. And you know, like scientists, like, they, they, they, they take things and like, Ooh, that worked or that didn't work. And then all of a sudden eureka. And then, you know, it's kind of like ab ex ab testing or like, you know, write your own, write your own your own story about which path you're gonna go down and, and sort of what happens. And I've sort of just always done that. Like, let's test this out and see how this works and lets, has this out. This didn't work and this did work, so I'm gonna go down this path. And I've, I've continued to just kind of do that my whole life as opposed to trying to come up with these big, lofty goals of what my life is gonna look like.
So I, I didn't really have anybody that I looked up to, you know, I I how I first, I ended up on TV just on a whim, but prior to being on tv, I was fired from a corporate gig for not being professional enough. They loved me as a person. They like really, they really cared about me, but they were just like, you just don't fit in here. And that was heartbreaking. But they told me I should be on tv and I was like, how? Oh, I remember driving away crying, being like, okay, great. I'm just gonna go be a movie star Fran fucking fantastic. You know, it turns out they were kind of onto something and I've talked to them since about it being like, how did you know? So I feel like there was always something telling me that I wanted to be a storyteller or that I wanted to be on stage, but I didn't know what that really looked like.
And then when I came off the Bachelor and whatnot I loved the community aspect of it. Like I loved connecting with people and people asking my outfits and all this stuff. And so that's when I started, started blogging. And I didn't really know many people that did that except for this one Hispanic girl, her name is Julia something. Her, her account is called Sincerely Jules. And she's this tiny, beautiful Hispanic blogger. And she has kept her personal life completely out of it. She just blogs about fashion and travel. I wasn't that smart <laugh>. So anyways she kind of inspired me. And somebody else that inspired me was Lauren Conrad at that time. She, she came off of TV and then she started a, a blog doing like DIYs and recipe and fashion. And I really loved that. But no, nothing, there was nothing, no coaching or anything.
I just really loved connecting with my community and storytelling. And then I loved the high that came with getting a certain amount of likes or followers or reactions and also people liking me. I mean, like, I'm not gonna sugarcoat it. When you start doing this business and you have people saying, you're so cute. A word's that outfit from or I love you, that is, gives you a sense of adrenaline and rush that is addicting. And so I wanted more followers. I wanted to make them laugh. I wanted to them to learn from me. I wanted to continue to build that community. And it wasn't until about 10 years ago that I, my agent at the time told me I was wasting my time with this industry. I was never gonna make money. And I was convinced that there was a way to like, monetize this passion of mine.
And I started doing like, affiliate links and ads and partnerships and then the, I was still doing tv. I still had a TV gig, but my, I wasn't passionate about tv. People know me as this girl on tv, but I was now passionate about it. I was passionate about like my Instagram and Facebook community. And we, I hired somebody and we basically grew it from a $300 a month business to like, I don't know, $30,000 a month in like a year. I was able to like then hire another person and like pay her a full-time gig. And I was making great money and I was like, holy shit. Like this is, this is an actual business. This is, this is for real. And that was 10 years ago. So yeah, so I really didn't have anybody coaching me along the way and I sort of got into it at the very beginning.
So it's been kind of like the wild wild west trying to navigate this industry and also try to legitimize it with, with our following. Because our following, they're the ones that wanted this content. They're the one that wanted to see us do more hire, more grow, but then you get too big and all of a sudden they're upset. They're upset that we have a nice house or that we have a nice vacation, that we're successful now. We're successful from this industry. Now everybody hates the influencers. You hate the influencers. But at the same time we've grown for the last 10 years supporting the influencers. And why, cause many of them are women stay-at-home moms, they're hustling, they're working hard at the, what you see is not necessarily the business. So it is, I find it to be just a very, very interesting industry and one that I don't always have part in my language, the balls for like, sometimes I'm like, I just don't know if I have this in me anymore. But now I have a team to support, so I have to, it's not just about me anymore. <Laugh>. Yeah. That's
Kim Foster Yardley (00:18:37):
Incredible. I mean, it sounds like you find, you find passion just in the process of being an entrepreneur. Cuz isn't that entrepreneurship, like trying all these different things and some of their work and some of them don't, and you just keep going. What, what keeps you, what keeps you driving forward? What,
Jillian Harris (00:18:54):
Well, I think, Rob or you had a great question. Somewhere along there is like it talked about being passionate about being entrepreneur and like, do I enjoy having a team versus the old days? And I will be honest with you, since my mom got sick last year, and like covid kind of weaned itself out. I don't know what it was, if it was my mom, if it was covid, it was the growth of the business or just me as a human evolving. But I will say that my passion for the business is changing. And I don't know, also the team is doing such a good job of running the business that it's taken away some of that that excitement for, not excitement, but like the rush of being a new entrepreneur. It's gotten a bit boring. It's corporate, it's, we've got systems, we've got procedures, we've got policies, we've got HR people, we've got meetings, everything's organized.
And, you know, 10 years ago, I was just, part of my language was flying off a fucking handle, trying to figure out how to grow this business. And now it's grown. Now it's grown, there's money coming in. It's like, and so I said to Justin the other day, I can't figure out whether I'm just bored and over it or if things are just running smoothly and I just have to do my job. I I can't, I, I'm still trying to figure that out. But I do, I do love business. I do love business and entrepreneurship, but I feel like I'm a startup person and once the business gets to a certain point, there's certain things that just don't interest me in it anymore. And part of me sometimes feels like I wanna get away from being on Instagram and just be a business person, but I think I would miss that connection with the people.
So I'm actually going through a big thing right now personally where I'm trying to identify what I want to do next in my life. Like, I could keep myself busy just with my kids sports schedules and cooking and grocery shopping and organizing and gardening. I could, and I don't, I don't need much. I don't need a new house. I don't need the farm. I, I have one designer purse, it was gifted to me. Like, I don't really need those things, so why, what do I wanna do next? And why? Like, why would I wanna keep growing? And I'm trying to, I'm trying to figure out what that is.
Rob Pintwala (00:21:14):
That's, it sounds, that's really exciting. I think Kim and I can both relate to the yeah, we've had our own discussions about like getting to corporate. I mean we're, we're tiny, you know businesses here. But a a as far as, as far as like your, I guess what you want to do next, like, I've been thinking a lot about when, when you like, are building momentum and then you're kind of like finding that motivation again, right? And you have to almost like, okay, what motivated me to get to this point might not actually be the thing that's motivating me anymore. So it's, it's, right. It's, I I think it's amazing that you have a team that can kind of keep at least the business momentum up while you can pause and reflect.
Rob Pintwala (00:21:57):
They're amazing. And like, do you, do you have, have you been able to reflect more recently than, like in the past? Like, were you, or were you always been like stopping and kind of like seeing your direction?
Jillian Harris (00:22:09):
No, I think also recently the team has been really urging me to come up with a plan <laugh>, which I normally like planning, but you know, the team needs to know what their trajectory is gonna be like in the next five to 10 years. What should their priorities be? What should they be working on? And up until now, we've just been reacting. We've been reacting and we've been going with the flow and trying new things. We released presets and made a bunch of money on that and that helped grow our business. And then we had this idea to do the jelly box. So we just did that and you know, and now they wanna know like, what, what are we working on next? Like, what do we, what do we do? And up until now I haven't really been reflecting, no. And I think a lot has happened, you know, covid babies, my mom being sick.
Even my relationship with Justin, I've realized like needs more time and attention. I, I miss socializing so much. Like covid sort of ended, but then we failed our schedule. So many other things, I feel like I don't have the time or I don't know how to get that, that socialization in anymore. So yeah, I've been thinking a lot more recently. And also the team does such a good job that frankly I'm, what I said to them about a year ago is, I need to get back to the place where I'm in front of my customer and I'm not worrying about hr, I'm not worrying about numbers, I'm not worrying about the bottom line. Like, I've hired you all to figure that out. I need to get back on Instagram. Creating, talking, connecting. And we haven't quite got there yet. We're slowly getting there.
I've got a little bit more, but now that I've gotten more time, I find I'm not spending it on Instagram. Like I told them I was going to, I'm spending it, organizing my kids' schedules picking my kids up, going to get my nails done. I'm, I'm spending it living my life and I'm really enjoying that. And I'm feeling guilty that I told them I was gonna be on Instagram, but really I'm actually not doing that. And I keep telling them, if you can get me off of less meetings, I promise I'll do my job. But I am, I'm suspicious that if they get me off of less meetings, that I'll be going to yoga more. I'll be going out for lunch, I'll be, I'll be, I'll be doing all the things. So I'm, I'm just curious and I'm just trying not to put too much pressure on myself because ultimately I have a team of really brilliant people and they love their job and they wanna keep working there.
They're gonna figure out how to make this business work. I am not worried about that. And if they don't, if they don't or they don't want to anymore, then that's up to them. I am okay as a human being. I came from northern Alberta. I came from a cookie cutter house on a cul-de-sac that probably today would go for a couple hundred thousand dollars. And I was very happy there. I love, yes, I love traveling. Yes, I love my big fancy house, but I could go back to that and I know I could be happy. So I've, I think I've just been reflecting lately, really trying to lean into when I'm, when I'm in that hustle culture moment, why am I doing that? And how did I get here? Who put me in this place? Am I enjoying it? And if not, then I have to start saying no more.
Like, I'm really trying my best to to, to follow my heart that way. And I was driving home from dropping Leo off today at school, and a country music song came on and it was called, anyways, it was an eighties country song. And it reminded me of the eighties days when my parents would listen to like, like Dwight Yoakum and Tanya Tucker, and it was Suno and I turned up the, the volume and I kind of started crying a little bit. Like, I just felt like so happy. And I was like, oh my God, I miss that feeling of just like feeling like, you know, when you're so happy, like, like you're just like, ah, like you're just happy. You don't, you're not stressed, you're just, you just feel energized. You wanna dance, you wanna sing, you wanna roll down your windows. And I, I'll be honest, like I'm starting to cry, but, but I haven't felt a lot of that in the last four years.
So yeah, like this is like for sure, for sure in therapy that everybody's gonna get to join in on later. And so it felt really good and I started thinking about this podcast and work and Justin and everything. I started thinking like wow, I'm in my mid forties and so what, am I gonna wait till I'm 50 to enjoy my life? Am I gonna wait till I'm 60? Like when is it that I'm gonna wake up in the morning and just be like, I'm in control of my day. I get to decide what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna go to yoga, go visit my mom, pick up my kids early, make some sourdough and not have to be on meetings. Well, how long am I gonna wait to do that? And many people don't have the luxury of making that decision. A lot of people just have to work forever. And I am very cognizant of that. And I just don't know, like, I just think like, well, how much more do I really need? Do I really need to keep on doing this? But I, I don't know. Anyhow, so I'm, I'm struggling. I'm trying to figure out, and if all of the meetings went away today, would I be happy? I don't know. It's scary. I don't know. Could you quit working today, Rob? Do you think I'd be happy?
Rob Pintwala (00:27:14):
That's a good question. I mean, I, I think about that here and there. Not, not long enough to actually <laugh> make an, make an impact. But what
Jillian Harris (00:27:23):
About you, Kim? Could you
Rob Pintwala (00:27:24):
Kim Foster Yardley (00:27:27):
I would get bored think, I think I'd get bored. I, I, I think I need, I dunno if it's an addiction, but I, yeah, I get a great deal of satisfaction from challenging myself and then seeing where that takes me.
Jillian Harris (00:27:41):
I think that's the problem. I feel like I don't know if I feel as challenged anymore.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:27:46):
Jillian Harris (00:27:47):
Yeah. Right. Maybe that's the problem.
Rob Pintwala (00:27:49):
In my own therapy, my therapist has, has talked about this <laugh> zone of like, slowing down is like, right. If I was a therapist, what I'm not, I would say to you, Jill, like your next big thing's just around the corner, you're gonna crush it, but you're just like waiting for the right thing.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:28:06):
Jillian Harris (00:28:07):
Right. And that, that stresses me out. I'm like, cool <laugh>, I don't that thing, I don't, my schedule doesn't offer it.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:28:13):
It, whereas Jillian, I'm thinking, you know, when we take on challenges and we, and we and we are like, the way you are so authentic in how you are, and then you take on these challenges, we grow and we mature and we change. That's true. So what we need change. Yeah. What drives us changes. And I'm just wondering if this time that you're taking is just a, a way of attuning. Yeah. Like tapping back into this different version of you that's now in your mid forties and maybe needs other things because you've grown. Right. Because that's what being human is. We don't stay in one place. Totally. Especially if we are willing to push ourselves. Right.
Jillian Harris (00:28:55):
Totally. Yeah. It's, it's really interesting. And I've been, I don't know if you guys have noticed it, but there is a big shift, not like just in culture of just like even the workforce and people working and wondering why they're working. And sometimes I wonder like, well, how are these people paying their bills? But a lot of people are just going like, I just need less. Like, I just wanna live my life. And so I feel like that's really interesting as well. Like so much has changed in the last four years. I'm always so curious to see what is gonna happen to our society, like what is gonna happen to the workforce and to, like, I always like, it's just, it is wild. Like even for us, staffing has just completely changed. Like how people wanna work and what people are willing to do and not willing to do versus five years ago is so different.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:29:39):
Yeah. I think, I think because
Jillian Harris (00:29:40):
Of, sorry, Rob, do you wanna
Rob Pintwala (00:29:42):
Go first? Go ahead. No, yeah, no, I was, I was just thinking about what you said earlier about like, most people aren't lucky enough to even be able to think about like not going to work, you know? Right. But I, but I, but I think that from my observation, you know, I can imagine that building your business isn't like you can take an extended period of time off, like your business is like that engagement and that like constant checking in. So it's, it sounds to me like there's been some work done on like, not feeling as required or like not feeling as maybe trapped as totally in, in, in, in the past where you feel like you have to like, be on Yeah. And is that, that must be ama Like is that the case? Or is that, that must be a huge ch change. Like
Jillian Harris (00:30:26):
It is, it is totally wild. And you made me think of something before I get to this about oh, the other thing I think that has like, you know, when I say like, well maybe I just don't even wanna work anymore. Like, you know, Justin works, he makes good money. Like he could, he could support the family that that would be fine. Not all moms work, you know? So maybe I don't want to, but one of the other reasons why is when I look at the team, and many of them are moms or moms to be, or dads and dads to be, and I look at them and I see how much they love their job. And I think if I were to fold everything today, what would happen to them? And that is part of that legacy that I think, I think somewhere in, is it this podcast or somewhere else that somebody asked me, oh no, I'm doing a Girl Boss podcast later on this month.
And one of it was just like, what, what are you most proud of? And when I think about what I'm most proud of, it always is the team and seeing how they've grown and how they've evolved, and now how they're buying houses and supporting their families. And we have an R s P contribution, and so I can tell that they're, they're saving up, they're growing. And so that is addicting for me because I want the team down the road to have a family or grandma, or be a grandma, and their kids are great grandkids. Say, yeah, you know, grandma Shea, she had a good job working with Jillian Harris, and this is why we have this cabin on the water today, or whatever it is. Or, you know, and, you know, aunt grandma Shea put us through college because of how hard she worked with this. You know, like to me, I keep on thinking about this, this, this legacy that can be built not just for me, but for our team. But Rob, sorry, what was your question? Your question
Rob Pintwala (00:32:10):
Was just, just feeling sort of obligated to Oh, to, to be on.
Jillian Harris (00:32:16):
Yeah. Okay. So yes. So I went away for, to Hawaii for two weeks and I mostly disconnected like I shared on Instagram to be connected with my community, but I was completely disconnected from the operational side of my business. And that I haven't done for a long time. And what happens when I usually go on vacation and I disconnect, is I get anxiety and I get thinking like, is is anybody even working? Like, what are people even doing? And I've got 30 something staff and I haven't even heard from them. Like, are they on vacation as well? And so I felt completely disconnected from my business when I got back. And then we had this massive meeting yesterday, and it was a meeting that we'd been preparing for, for about five months, and it was about our five to 10 year plan. And I said to Justin, like, I have this meeting tomorrow and I don't even know what the fuck is going on.
Like, I don't even know what our five to 10 year plan is, and I'm supposed to get up and present. I was like, I, I, I don't know. Like, I don't know what we're doing. I don't know what I'm doing, like what am I doing? And so Justin was like helping me prepare for this meeting. And I woke up in the morning and I was like, how do I get out of this meeting? Like, I'm the business owner, I'm the owner, I'm the founder, and I'm thinking like, oh, I got a frog in my throat. Like I should call in sick. Like I can't go and lead my team. But I was like, okay, I had a green smoothie, I liked, I I had my lemon water. I was like, okay, I had oatmeal. I set myself up for success and I got there and they gave me, I don't know where it is, I printed it out somewhere and they gave me this deck and it's like this 30 page deck.
And they had my parts in it, and they had their parts and they had the whole plan of like, this is what our trajectory looks like, this is what we're gonna be focusing on. These are our brand pillars, this is how we're gonna achieve our goals. This is who's gonna do it and this is how it's gonna work. And I was able to sit there and watch the team present, and I was able to go, yes, yes, this is what we're doing. And then I was able to amplify and support them and be able to like amp up the team and add that personality to these presentations. And when I left, the sun was shining and we all walked back to our cars and I just like thanked everybody so much. And I was like, wow, like you guys have worked so hard on this.
They've, all of that stuff that I hate, the policies and the systems and the meetings that really led into this beautiful created presentation that actually I probably needed the most, more than anybody. And so Rob, I have been able to step back and relax and I don't feel as pressured and I'm so grateful for it, but I still wanna make sure that I'm passionate about it. So now I can continue to lead them from a creative angle. So I'm just trying to like, now they're like, okay, Jill, this is what you wanted, so now do your thing. And so now it's my turn to like to, to get on it, and I gotta just figure that out. <Laugh>.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:35:05):
I mean, I, I think that what I'm hearing so strongly, I mean, I have a couple of thoughts. The one was related to how, what was happening with your mom, COVID becoming a mom. There's a lot that's happened where just even I think of all of us, not just of you, we we've had a lot of loss. Yeah. We've had a lot of change. And, and when those things happen, it kind of forces us to start thinking about what matters to
Jillian Harris (00:35:34):
Kim Foster Yardley (00:35:35):
Yeah. Yeah. And like, I just thought like, just like what matters changes
Jillian Harris (00:35:41):
<Laugh>, and it does,
Kim Foster Yardley (00:35:42):
Maybe what matters is becoming more important.
Jillian Harris (00:35:44):
Totally. Totally. Yeah. Totally.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:35:49):
And I, I was thinking about that and then as I was then Rob asked his question and, and you were talking about your team, and it sounded to me like what you were saying is that part of what matters to you is that legacy and seeing your team flourish
Jillian Harris (00:36:03):
Kim Foster Yardley (00:36:04):
Creating something sustainable and that, that, that's actually been part of the fuel
Jillian Harris (00:36:08):
Now. Yeah. I think that's important. And then the other thing that I've been really cognizant of, and I think about night and day and throughout the day and whatnot, is my presence and time with the kids. Like, I feel like I've been so frantic up until now. I've been so busy. And Rob, I don't know, you said you have a 16 month old mm-hmm. <Affirmative>. Yes. So I don't know how you feel about that. You're a dad, so I feel like dads are just better at this. But like, I'm not a good player. Like I can't play with my kids. The kids always want me to play. Justin's so good at playing with the kids. And so I'm always thinking like, how are the kids gonna remember me? Are they gonna remember me as the mom who was always busy and always rushing them? And I was always in the kitchen and I'm always doing things?
And is, is there anything wrong with that? Like, like my kids got, my kids have pancakes and eggs every single morning. Our house is clean and tidy. We go on lots of vacations. I've alway I'm planning things for them, I'm signing them up for camps. Like I provide for them in the best possible way, but am I really present with them? Am I connecting with them? Like, am I, I don't know. I think that's the other thing I'm really cognizant of is like, from a business perspective, you totally nailed it, Kim. But on a personal level, I'm just trying to figure out like, how do I be more present and more calm and less reactive? How do I be more organized? And I just generally, my brain is just that kind of person who just loves chaos and, and jam packed to action to begin with. So I'm trying to retrain my brain a bit as well.
Rob Pintwala (00:37:36):
Just to bring the like conversation a little bit more back to mental health side of things too. Like it sounds, it sounds like the fact that you are reflecting a little bit more, it seems, seems like lately, has that been motivated by like a prioritization of like wellness or health, mental health, like, or is that Yeah.
Jillian Harris (00:37:56):
Well, so when mom got sick last year, you guys are gonna love this story. Our viewers are, I've never told this story publicly, but I'm gonna tell it now and I'm probably gonna get judged. But it's kind of a funny story for some people. Probably not funny for like, people who are very not liberal. It's gonna be, they're not, they're gonna judge me. But anyways, so mental health, wellness and whatnot is, so I've first of all also a dairy devil and I'm very stubborn. And so basically a little bit prior to Covid and during Covid, I was like sort of like, look at me. I can accomplish all these amazing things whilst only drinking wine, coffee and eating pasta. And I can, and I don't have to work out. I hate working out. Like who works out? It's so stupid. They don't like exercises for like, I'm not doing that.
And I did that somewhat successfully for several years until everything started piling up on top of each other. I was gaining weight, I had bags under my eyes, I was puffy, I was sluggish, I had anxiety. Then my mom got really sick. We had a whole bunch of staffing issues and I took it really hard on myself. Like, I thought I was this great leader and this great boss, and we were really struggling in the HR department. And I was like, fuck. Like I just feel like I'm, I'm losing control. Like I am losing control of my life. And mom was so sick last year that, you know, not to paint the whole picture, but we had several trips to emergency. I thought we were gonna lose my mom last year and I just could not cope. I could not cope. And I was breaking down with Justin with the team.
I was breaking down with the kids. Like I just, I was losing it. And <laugh>, we were visiting with some friends and I won't, I won't say who they are because he may not wanna be named. And he said, has your mom ever tried Asci IBANs, which is mushrooms? And I said, well, I'm really curious about them. I think they would be great for my mom, but I just don't know where to look. Like I don't know where to go. Maybe Kim and Rob, you'd have some advice for me after this, but I really think like, like going down the mushroom route with my mom, I feel like it would help. Anyhow. I was like, so I said to my friend, like, if you got any ideas, let me know. And he's like, well, the, the only ones that I know are like super, super small.
Microdosing is probably not what your mom needs, but maybe you would like them. And I'm like, oh, sure, I'll, I'll give it a shot. So anyways, I come back from a work trip and my mother-in-law says, yeah, your friend dropped off these, these pills for you <laugh>, and it's like a picture of her little Buddha on a white bottle, like <laugh>. It's like totally like I I, I don't even know where he got these things from. And I tried one and I didn't really feel much and I tried one the next day and didn't really feel much and I was like, oh, whatever. And I tried C B D, I tried all, I tried all the things to cure my anxiety except for like actually prioritizing my health. And I also was drinking a lot of wine and whatever, drinking whatever I, I could drink.
So anyhow, yeah, I definitely need a few sessions with you, Kim. Anyhow, we were having this big team meeting and it was 9:00 AM and I had so much anxiety, I was thinking about everything I needed to tell them. And I took two pills and I got in on this call and I'm on a Zoom call. And Shea, who's our main girl, is like, why is your face so close to the screen? <Laugh>? I'm like this. I'm like, I'm like this. I'm like, oh my God, I think I'm high. And she's like, on a Wednesday morning, I'm like, yeah, no, I'm for sure high. I am a hundred percent high. I took mu I took, I took mushrooms this morning. She's like, oh my God, Jillian. I was like, yeah, I'm, I'm gonna have to, I, I couldn't stop, I couldn't stop laughing. I was full on tripping out at nine o'clock in the morning this summer on a Wednesday morning.
And I'm like, oh my God. So my mom, who was not well at this time, she was, I had to watch her. Like my dad had to go to work and my dad's like, she can't be alone. So my mom comes around the corner and she's like, hi, Jill. I'm like, hi. She's like, how are you? And I'm like, I'm hi. She's like, you're, hi. And so meanwhile we had to call my dad. I'm like, dad, we can't do it today. Like, mom's not doing well, she's depressed. I'm high. My dad was just howling. My dad was like, my poor girls like you girls. So we had to call my just Justin's brother who knows a lot about Psilocybins. I had to get off the call and that was like my call, that was like my come to Jesus moment. I was like, I have hit an all time low.
Like I, not that taking mushrooms is a bad thing for those of you. I know they can do many wonderful things, but like, I just was like, I was not going about it. Right? So essentially what happened after that meeting is I was like, okay, I've gotta go the AB testing we talked about earlier, the scientific experiment, I was like, I can go down one of two paths right now. I can quit. I can quit everything and just be a stay-at-home mom. Justin can support us. I wanna focus on my mom, I'm gonna focus on my health and I'm gonna say goodbye to this career and I'm just gonna focus on this. And I lived with that decision for a couple of days. Or I can actually try to do the things that I know I need to do that are actually gonna work to get myself out of this hole and then make a decision when I am on my game.
So that was basically in September and it took me, some people make these, these changes and they, they think that they can make these changes to their life overnight. And I knew that I was gonna set myself up for failure. So I gave myself a timeline that basically by January, so I gave myself four months to kind of pull it together. I knew I was gonna do this, I had to prepare for this. I wanted to wait like Christmas. I love Christmas, like the eggnog and the rum. And we had my friend's wedding over New Year's. And so I was like, okay, after that it's gonna be a whole new me. So throughout the month of January like I didn't even recognize myself and neither did Justin or my team. I was like liver detox. I was like removing certain things from my diet.
I started yoga. I went on a wild wellness cleanse. I started meditating. I was prioritizing my self-care. I started getting into like my facial treatments again. And while low and behold, what do you know, I started feeling better. Like, I started feeling like I had more energy, I started feeling more positive. I was having less breakdowns. I was able to handle stress better. Like it just, it goes on and on. And so sorry again for the long-winded answer, Rob. But I do believe that like a lot of this reflection and like this podcast even coming at such a perfect time is like it, all of these things are happening and it's allowing me to now start thinking about what the next steps are for me. And maybe I'll be able to make, I don't think I'm quite there yet. But I feel like I'm about a 25% way into this like, wellness journey.
And I'm really, really loving it. Like, I love that I don't think about wine every night. We're hosting Easter this weekend and I'm like, eh, maybe I'll have a glass of wine. Maybe I won't. Where I don't even remember last Easter. Like I, I, I'm put on a beautiful dinner. It was very Instagram worthy. I made homemade buns, but I was drunk. I was drunk. I'm not gonna lie. I, I was, and it was fun. We had a great time. But it's, it's not healthy. It's just, it's, that's not the legacy I wanna live in my forties. Like, it's just not who I imagined myself to be. And so I'm really, really proud and I'm really excited, but I don't think I'm fully there yet. But I, I have made a lot of changes and, and it does work. It, it does work, but it, it's all, it's hard work. Like waking up at five o'clock in the morning to go to yoga, like that's, that's hard. Pat myself on the back.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:45:23):
Parenting oneself is hard work.
Jillian Harris (00:45:24):
It's exactly. It's so much discipline. Exactly. Yeah. So anyways, I've never told that story before publicly. And hopefully I don't get judged too hard. But, you know, everybody hits their sort of rock bottom and, and I, I totally did this summer.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:45:37):
And I think what, you know, firstly, thank you for sharing and certainly from my end, no judgment at all because I think you're just so honest and authentic around the experience that you give permission to others to be the same. I think I've, I'm repeating myself a bit there but I was also thinking about how you are really exemplifying for me how when we are distressed, often what we want to do is try and avoid it or numb it out. Yeah.
Jillian Harris (00:46:09):
Kim Foster Yardley (00:46:09):
Actually that anxiety or that stress or that breakdown, what did you call it? An empty
Jillian Harris (00:46:14):
Kim Foster Yardley (00:46:15):
Bement be <laugh> be <laugh> that mentee be, might actually be our inner wisdom trying to help us to connect back to ourselves. Right, right. Totally. Trying to like show us our direction. Yeah. And if we, if we try, if we try listening, most of us know what we need to do. We don't actually need someone else to tell
Jillian Harris (00:46:33):
Us totally why we haven't. Justin and I have a therapist and before every meeting I'm, I wanna cancel cause I'm like, I already know what he's gonna say, <laugh>. I already know the answers. Like we, we just told, like when I, when I'm like, what's wrong with me? How do I change this? I know how to change the things. It's just a matter of doing it. That's the hardest part.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:46:52):
And what you're doing by, by kind of giving yourself some grace by not doing everything at once, you're recognizing that you're human and we can't conquer a mountain in a month.
Jillian Harris (00:47:01):
Totally. Right? Totally. Yeah.
Rob Pintwala (00:47:04):
That's what stands out to me is that you gave yourself those four months. Like that is amazing. And I know I, I can relate to, you know you know, being not sober on different, different substances and part psilocybin as well. What that's like not, not on a,
Jillian Harris (00:47:25):
I like, I like calling it psilocybin cuz it sounds much more fancy.
Rob Pintwala (00:47:28):
Yeah. It's the next frontier in terms of like mental health. Oh, totally apply. I'm, I'm getting interested in it. But yeah, I I think it's just the, like, the self kind of patience that you're showing is just that's very inspirational. It's amazing.
Jillian Harris (00:47:44):
Thank you. I really, I really appreciate that. Cause I'm not a patient person, so that's been really hard for me to go like, okay, this is gonna take time. But yeah, I have to take my own advice too because with my, with my mom being sick, you know, my mom was so sick and I'm trying to give her advice and I'm trying to support her, but yet I'm not taking my own advice. I was like, okay, I know the answers to this. And I think it's when you, when you really desperately want it to be successful, if you desperately want it to be successful, then you really have to do the work. And it is all work. Like I understand why there are a lot of humans on the planet that are struggling or overweight or unhealthy weight not underweight, overweight, underweight unhealth struggling with our mental health and and whatnot.
First of all, it's a very interesting time to be alive and in terms of like economics and mental health and the workforce and just everything that's been going on. Social media, media. But also it is easier to let ourselves go and to just go like, you know how I think about a and w every day <laugh>, I won't. I love a and w I actually love McDonald's too. I love it All pizza. I love, I love wine. Ooh, tequila. Well, I could do it all, but it is, it, it, I can see why it's easy to just go down the, the, the, the slippery slope. Cuz it's, it's easy to do it. It's harder. Like this is disgusting. This is disgusting. It's romaine lettuce, celery, cucumber, kale, broccoli and parsley. It tastes like a dirty fart. But I am, I am three quarters of the way done <laugh> and I hopefully will feel great tomorrow morning. <Laugh>.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:49:32):
I think that's the thing, when we do those things that are hard, they end up showing such good returns. Right? But it's a
Jillian Harris (00:49:40):
Long game. Yeah. Have you guys heard
Kim Foster Yardley (00:49:41):
She's such a long
Jillian Harris (00:49:42):
Game. Catherine Rosco bar, I did this retreat with her. She's incredible. If you've ever chatted with her, she's great. But she taught us about this thing and it's called oh God, hope I can remember. It's these four different sort of disciplines and it's constructive pain, destructive pain, constructive pleasure and deconstructive pleasure. And so these things that we do, that we analyze, like how is this harming my life? Or how is this like contributing to my wellness? And so like, like the dirty fart juice, it's like, I call this I call, call this constructive pain. It's like, it's gross but it's gonna make me feel good. And so I always, I actually started teaching the kids about this. Cause you know, they love the, the, the candy first thing in the morning, their iPads. And we just talk about like, why do you like this and how does this contribute to your wellness and your wellbeing? But I try to look at things differently now and try to a ask myself like, I really enjoy this I love this is it, but is it also good for me? Like, I actually, I love hot yoga. I actually love hot yoga. I, I, I crave it. And I didn't do it for 10 years, and now that I'm back at it again, I'm like, how did I let this out of my life? So yeah. Yeah, some of those things, one of those things are hard. Go ahead, Rob. Sorry,
Rob Pintwala (00:50:56):
I'm on the hot yoga train as well. Yeah. My wife and I, it's the best. Yeah. Isn't it
Jillian Harris (00:51:00):
Rob Pintwala (00:51:01):
I just wanted to add too there though that I, I mean, I started Kim's a psychologist and I started a company connecting people with therapists, right? So like I, I've had my own kind of rock bottom or near rock bottom experiences, but also it's like, it goes back generations in my family. And I think what's really a key unlock is what I hear people like you kind of just alluded to, like, the work is never done. Yeah. And I, I think like it's tempting for <laugh>, I'm a millennial, but it's tempting for like, you know, millennial to like look at the boomer population and be like, oh, like the boomers are like, they've done their work, they've gone to therapy before and now they're done. You know, it's like, that's exactly. I don't know if that, that's how it works. And it's
Jillian Harris (00:51:49):
Funny you say that because I, I, I talk to my parents a lot about like, now my dad's retiring and they're bored and my mom's still not doing well. And I can see them going kind of stir crazy and I'm like talking to them about like therapy and going to yoga and like, what are they gonna do with themselves? And my dad actually said something similar. He's like, well, I've, I've done, I've done all these things like I just wanna enjoy. But I'm like, I, I dad, I don't think it works like that. Like, I think you gotta keep on discovering yourself. You gotta keep on thinking about these things. You have to keep on growing. My dad's such like an old school guy, he's like, ah, I don't know about that shit. But, you know, it is really interesting because when you stop that work, you stop challenging yourself, you stop growing. And I think that's a kind of a scary place to be.
Rob Pintwala (00:52:34):
Yeah. I think as an entrepreneur too, like you're always looking for the next creative output. Totally. And I think it's, it's, it's really hard. I know I struggle with it too. It's like, I, I mean, I love working on myself. I'm probably obsessed with it. And I'm like, amazing taking a break from therapy right now, but I'm sure I'll be there again soon, <laugh>. But as far as as far as actually like, I'm like sitting and enjoying the ride. Like, like you said, could you not work? And I'm like, well, I actually have been kind of thinking about that because like, what is the point? If you can't just like relax for a second or at least like create some sort of joy from what you've worked on. And I've like, you know, I never feel like my business is doing well enough or good enough and Right. You know, people ask me how it is and I'm like, oh, that's okay. Like, it could be better. And that's just kind of my nature, but I think it's like other people help me realize like, hey, like this is great. You should be kind of yourself. And I think that's so important. But also for your own personal growth and work and therapy or not therapy or just trying to be kind yourself and realizing that that's super important.
Jillian Harris (00:53:42):
Yeah. I always wonder if there's like something wrong with me because, well, there's something wrong with all of us, I'm sure. But there's some days where I'm like, like today I'm like, I'm so proud of our team. Like, holy smokes, like, our business is doing so well. And I mean, yes, there's certain things like that. I'm like, how come we're overhead's too high? Or do we have too much staff? You know, there's certain things that I'm always, I'm always analyzing, but then there's days where I'm like, this is bullshit. Like, I'm folding the towel. This, this, this industry is sucks. Like I'm, I'm done with this. Like, I just wanna, I just wanna go on my farm and grow potatoes and you know, teach my kids how to paint. And you know, there's days and I always ask my team, I'm like, am I the most inconsistent person ever? Like, there are some days where I'm like, look at the bottom line and how did this take us so long? Let's get this going and we need to be more productive. And then there's days where I'm like, everybody gets a Friday off this summer, <laugh> just enjoy yourselves. Don't worry about work. And they're like, who? Who is like, I literally have a dual personality. I think it's very confusing for them, but it keeps things interesting. At least
Rob Pintwala (00:54:42):
It sounds like a classic entrepreneur. And I love that you're forced into entrepreneurship by getting fired. I have a similar story.
Jillian Harris (00:54:48):
Totally. Totally. Entrepreneur. Yeah. And I, I entrepreneur, I talk about it often. So it was Cactus Club. I worked for Cactus Club. I was a designer for them. And have you guys ever heard of Richard Jaffrey? So Richard Jaffrey is like one of the founders of Cactus Club. He's founded it with a guy named Scott Morrison, who now owns Browns. Of course now the Fullers own Earls, they own everything, but they're like such visionaries as it relates to like entrepreneurship. Like it's totally wild. But yeah, he kind of, he's pub hopefully never listens to us, but he kind of reminds me of Mr. Burns and he's kind of skinny and he kind of sit behind his desk, whatever. And I remember when he fired me for, for that. And I just remember being so devastated and he's like, I know you're devastated, but I'm telling you you're gonna do great things.
Like there's something about you that I feel like I can't keep you here. And I remember being so pissed off at him, like, you don't get to decide what I wanna do with my life. I will decide I wanna work in this stingy office with my face to a screen doing CAD drawings. Like that's what I wanted to do. <Laugh>. And I had, I known that him letting me go would've led to all of these things that would've been the best day of my life. But that's why like when we let our staff go or they quit, or I see people that are going through, you know, these certain rock bottoms of in their life I'm just like, you never know what can change. You never know. And that is one thing I would say my biggest takeaway to anybody when they ask about my trajectory and whatnot, is just always be open to the possibilities.
That is one good thing I can say about myself is I'm a very optimistic person and I always think that something good is gonna happen. And my husband Justin is always like, well, of course it'll happen for you. Like, he'll be like, he'll be like negative about something and I'll be like, oh no, we'll find a parking spot or, oh no. And he's like, well, of course you will. You will. I'm like it, I will because I do believe it's gonna happen. And so just be open to the possibilities and just do believe that you deserve great things and you're meant for great things and continue to tell yourself that because when you do that, you will put up with less shit from the world and from yourself and you will then be able to, I self-identify when something isn't working for you because you already decided that you're meant for these great things. So that's like the, I don't have a lot of advice because I've got my own issues to deal with. But that is the one thing that I'm always like, okay, I know that. Am I, I know that the, the possibilities are, are possible. It's possible to do all these great things. So, or that they can happen to you. Sometimes there is luck involved.
Kim Foster Yardley (00:57:21):
Wow. That's incredibly inspiring, huh? Thank you. Wow. <laugh>. I feel like you're talking yourself Nugget for the day. You like talking to yourself. You take your advice, Jillian open mirror, it's gonna be okay. Yeah. Oh goodness. Cause I think, you know, the, to, to your point about the ups and downs, like we are, we're, we are responding to what's happening in, in the world, but we are also responding to how we feel on that day, right? Totally. Like the state we wake up in that morning. Totally. Oh yeah. And so amazing how that can just shift everything and how we see the world. You
Jillian Harris (00:58:03):
Must love, like I actually am especially seeing what my mom has gone through over the years. This industry is so interesting and it's one that I've been very passionate about. Especially like I could, we could have a whole other conversation about like the healthcare system and like what you do, Rob, I have this idea for mental health patients and the a need that I've been seeing, and maybe this is like a, a thing. You could, you can just take this and if you, if you make a couple million, just let me know. Take me out for dinner. You, your wife and your, and Justin. We can go on a nice little fancy trip or something. But essentially it's like a project manager for that person because yeah, it's not just a therapist that they need. Like what my mom needs is, my mom needs a psychologist, a therapist, possibly a neurologist, a doctor, maybe a naturopath, maybe like a psilocybin doctor, maybe.
Like there's all these different people that I think need to assess her. They need to assess her, they need to do tests. Like I want my mom, my, my mom has a heavy metal B buildup. Maybe she's got, maybe she's got actual brain damage. Maybe. Maybe there's something that that that her psychiatrist has not identified that reason why she can't get better. But because the, the mental health practitioners don't really work with each other. It's so lonely. A therapist only works with therapists. There's, it's not collaborative. How do you solve this problem? What if my mom's got a few different problems that are contributing to her mental health issues? And so I did find a private practice that could help us, but it's 65 grand a week. It's, it's, it's gonna cost us a quarter million dollars for, for, and I, and I'd, I'd sell the farm, I would do it, I'd pay for it.
But there's no, there's no guarantees. And so I always think that this industry is really so interesting. And what you were saying, Kim what made me think about like how you wake up every day. I even have an obsession cuz you know, I did design home design before about how you wake up and how your space your space, your health, your clothes, everything contributes to your mental health. The color you paint your walls, how organized your bedroom is. Do you sleep with your bedroom blinds open? Is the sun waking you up? There's so much that can contribute to it. Like I, maybe that will be what I do when I'm done with Instagram. Maybe I'll go back to school and take psychiatry or mental health or or something like that. Cuz I think it's so interesting.
Rob Pintwala (01:00:22):
We can enroll together.
Kim Foster Yardley (01:00:22):
I think what you're saying.
Jillian Harris (01:00:23):
Rob Pintwala (01:00:24):
Be in that program with you
Jillian Harris (01:00:25):
<Laugh>. Totally. Kay. Let's do ahead. I
Kim Foster Yardley (01:00:27):
Think, I mean what you're saying is so true because just so for context, I've been a psychologist for 20 years. You're right. Wow. So I've seen everything, everything. <Laugh>. Yeah. And I've worked in South Africa where I'm from and I've worked in Canada, in Ontario, in Toronto. And it's often the small decisions we make every day. And like, like I know clients come to me and they're so desperate and they're in so much pain and they're like, can you just give me that one thing that will change everything? Right. And it's really heartbreaking Yeah. For me to have to say this, but it's, it's more like you're chipping away. It's more like you're peeling an onion. It's more like you're changing this piece and then that piece and then this helps and then there's this sit back. But then you try this and you're absolutely right. It's from so many different sides of us. Yeah. Our bodies, our minds, our health, our physical health who we surround ourselves
Jillian Harris (01:01:21):
With. Totally. It must be so overwhelming for so many patients. And I know my mom specifically cuz my mom's just waiting for her pills to just like make her feel a hundred percent. And I'm like, they can probably get you to a certain point, but then at that certain point it's gonna be up to you to do all of these different things and it's not just gonna be one thing. And for her, she's already overwhelmed. So she's like, well frick, like you're telling me I gotta eat healthy and I gotta do yoga and I gotta wash my hair and I have to exercise and I gotta go to painting class. Like I gotta do all these things. And then what if I can't do all these? It's so overwhelming. I mean that's what I'm saying. There needs to be like a project manager that'd be very expensive, but I'd be willing to pay extra on my taxes. This tax man can listen to me. Right. Right now I would literally pay whatever if we could have that kind of service. Because I think the mental health situation is only gonna get worse.
Rob Pintwala (01:02:12):
It sounds a little bit like in, from what I've learned in the US they have what, what they call functional medicine and I don't know they have that in Canada even, but functional medicine also sounds very expensive. But like they will give you a test to see if you have mercury poisoning or Lyme disease or you know. Right. But, but it's like, it's super, super thorough. But but then I, I just wanna add too, for like the younger population now there's all this like data and you know, the health podcasts and like there's so much information available. But then there's all these like wearables that you can track your sleep and you can track your glucose and you can like, if you have the means to do so. But I think there's so much more anxiety even associated with tracking all these things. Cuz then you're like, if, if you don't have a good sleep or like you have a sugar spike after eating, like, you know, have an ice cream and then you're just sentient in all,
Jillian Harris (01:03:01):
You almost manifest that you're in a bad mood that day. Totally. Yeah. Totally. Dude, I'll tell you I bought myself a new Apple watch because I, because Justin is like dragging his rings right? And I'm like, well I wanna do this with you. Right? And so like I'm putting the kids to bed and I'm like, oh fuck. I'm like, I'm like standing at the end of the kids' beds and I'm like trying to like close my rings at the end of the day and, but then when I don't close my rings I'm pissed off at myself. Like I'm feeling disappointed in myself cuz I didn't close my rings. I'm like, oh God. As I actually don't have it on today. Cause I'm like, I knew I was sitting in meetings all day today and I knew it would be telling me to stand and be telling me I'm not moving enough and I'm just like, Hey, you know what? My it can, it can shut up today. Like I already know I'm not gonna close my rings today. Okay. <laugh>. But yeah, it could,
Kim Foster Yardley (01:03:48):
I I'm avoiding that. Yeah. I do not have an Apple watch. Yeah, don't what? Because I know that's exactly what will happen to me. Yeah. It's just I don't need another thing telling me
Rob Pintwala (01:03:57):
My my wife
Kim Foster Yardley (01:03:59):
Rob Pintwala (01:04:00):
<Laugh> my wife makes, it'll be bad for my adhd <laugh> I yet
Jillian Harris (01:04:04):
Yeah, <laugh>, that's another thing that I wonder is that if I have h ADHD and I've had so many people tell me I do <laugh> and it's like I'm avoiding get, like I'm avoiding going down that path to find out if I am. But I'm thinking, well maybe if I am, maybe there's something that could help me and I can, but I'm like, I like myself the way I am. I like that I'm a disaster. I like that I'm all over the place, but what could I accomplish? Like you just never know. Like, does do things get better after you're diagnosed and you get medication? Or do you I don't know.
Rob Pintwala (01:04:37):
I I I'm 33 and I was got diagnosed when I was 32, so I got diagnosed last year Right. In bc and so my therapist recommended it and I haven't chosen to do any medication yet, but I do have that option. But I think a lot of the things that you're doing, and again, I'm not a therapist, but it's stuff like hot yoga. Like I love hot yoga. Yeah. It calms me down.
Jillian Harris (01:05:00):
So you're not taking any medication?
Rob Pintwala (01:05:02):
I'm not, no. But I, I know that there's some folks that choose maybe to have the medication for like, there's like podcasts dedicated to this stuff that I've gone down the road. Yeah. <laugh>. But you know, some people, if they have to do taxes or like bookkeeping or whatever, they'll like take a, they'll take one of their medication like for the day and then they just like, yeah, they get it done. But I mean, I'm not definitely not giving advice or anything but people do that. And yeah, I think it's, for me it's like I, the question of like the diagnosis, like there's a kind of a family history of I think being afraid of diagnoses in my family. Right. And not ADHD wasn't a big deal to me cause I reflected a lot on like diagnosis and you know, things like bipolar and things like that have come up in my family. But yeah, I think as long as you're like at the point where you can accept that like a diagnosis isn't gonna completely rock you and you can kind of use it just totally to learn more about what, how might you live better just by that knowledge.
Jillian Harris (01:06:00):
But do you think that people who have adhd, like I haven't done a whole lot of work on it, but it seems to me that there's this connection between people with ADHD and also entrepreneurs and overachiever and a typers. So like part of the time I'm like, well yeah, if I, if I didn't have adhd, like let, I don't know if I do or not, but I just have the suspicion that I do <laugh>. Like would I, would I have been able to like start all these businesses and juggle all these things and have these ideas and do these things? I mean oftentimes we're trying to like take all these pills to like normalize us, but like that's not interesting either. Like isn't that the, what makes the world go round is we're all just kind of different and some of us are a little bit loopier than others and that's what makes things interesting. I don't know.
Kim Foster Yardley (01:06:39):
I agree. I mean there's, there is that study a couple of years ago that looked at founders and kind of the incidence of mental health issues and it was something like 35% if I remember correctly. Mm.
Jillian Harris (01:06:51):
Kim Foster Yardley (01:06:52):
Presented with some kind of early trauma or had some kind of diagnosis or some kind. And there was something in that the writers were talking about around, or researchers rather around how early childhood trauma and ex kind of hardships, not necessarily full traumas, not the big teas. And you know, I could go into the big teases and the small teas, but basically just these hardships they help us to develop, not that I would wish trauma on anybody, but they do help us to develop grit and resilience and the ability to kind of be flexible and sometimes have too high a pain tolerance probably but also kind of be hungry for more. Yeah. And, and that and that thing ends up fueling this entrepreneurial process. So that was pretty interesting.
Jillian Harris (01:07:47):
Rob, you said that you had, you meant, do you have mental health history in your family as well? Yeah. Yeah. So that's really interesting. I mean this isn't Yeah, your interview, but I, I feel like I am curious because Please. I had such an interesting childhood in that my parents were incredible parents. They did such a good job raising me. But like there was alcohol abuse. My mom had a lot of issues with mental health. They separated, they got back together. I lived with my aunt, I lived with my dad like us and people were like always like, oh, poor Jillian, poor Jillian. And I would never want my kids to go through that. But whenever my parents feel guilty, like today my parents are together and everything is is great aside from my mom's, my mom's illness. But they're always like, oh, we feel so bad.
And I'm like, oh honestly, trust me, whatever you did, I, I turned out great. Like, look guys, I'm doing great. Like yeah, maybe not everything I'm doing is good for my mental health, but I'm happy and I'm hopefully changing some lives and producing aspirational content and traveling. I'm like, do you think that I turned out bad? Like, are you sorry, do you think I turned out bad? So anyways, I would never want my kids to go through what I went through, but sometimes I worry that what, what adversities will they go through? Any adversities that will make them stronger? And what happens if you have no adversities? Then what happens? Do you still turn out okay or do you become just like a spoiled soft brat? I don't know.
Kim Foster Yardley (01:09:09):
<Laugh>, I thought about it. Well apparently it's like a middle ground. Yeah. There's a study that was done at the University of Buffalo, like in the two thousands and they talk about how it was quite controversial cause he was like, you need like a certain number of hardships. And they were talking about like the people who were the most happy and repor had, they almost had like an average of eight or something <laugh>, which is like, I dunno if this is a random number com where he interviewed I think 20,000 people in North America. So there was something around how adversity
Jillian Harris (01:09:44):
Kim Foster Yardley (01:09:44):
And exposure to stress actually. And then the people who were on the other sides of the curve who had had a lot of, lot of hardship, who had none at all were the most unhappy,
Jillian Harris (01:09:53):
How much of
Kim Foster Yardley (01:09:54):
His life satisfaction.
Jillian Harris (01:09:55):
But I get in a way, sometimes you need to go through like you need shit to hit the fan so many times so that when things are normal you're so happy because things are just normal. Like you're just happy to be existing cuz shit's not hitting the fans. Maybe that's the psychology behind that,
Kim Foster Yardley (01:10:10):
But I actually think it's because how do we know that we are resilient? How do we know that we confident if we don't overcome difficult things? Right. You know, like, I know I'm kind of being a downer, but like, you know, it is just that, that that stretching of ourselves and then seeing, hey, I I I could actually handle that. Wow. So suddenly we have confidence in ourselves to be able to handle things and we didn't think we could before.
Jillian Harris (01:10:35):
Rob Pintwala (01:10:37):
I think a lot of like, as far as parenting goes, like I think people have a tendency to sort of overcompensate for what they might have missed out on. Right. As a parent. And I know that like, I think that the most prevalent mental health occurrence and, and my family that I know about is like my mom's parents dad was a war veteran and had like pretty severe P T S D. There was like attempted suicide. My mom was like 10 years old and then her mother was suffered from alcoholism. And so my mom like realized at one point that she was like, from this family that, you know, was dysfunctional and then like, it was like her mission to not make that happen again. And so it was like, it kind of like almost overextended <laugh> on that, on that mission.
And I think like to your point about not not having adversity, I think like even just seeing like my older nieces and nephews grow up, maybe they're around your children's age, I just think like, doesn't matter what neighborhood you grow up in. And, and I know like I've heard a lot of therapists tell me like, don't compare traumas, like your experiences, your experience. Like yeah, anyone going to grade school is gonna be up against hard, hard times, whether they are wearing the nicest clothes and getting dropped off in the nicest car or yeah, not right. And I think like these stories about youth you know, suicide and things like that now, which are terrible, but you know, just bullying can cause it totally within like online bullying and just always being on with them, like on their devices and like all sorts of the stuff. So I think there's, there's enough adversity around that, that teaching the good modeling, the good coping skills and
Jillian Harris (01:12:15):
Great, I don't have to worry about how I'm gonna traumatize my children in order to make them better human beings. Okay. <laugh>
Rob Pintwala (01:12:20):
<Laugh>, <laugh>. One
Jillian Harris (01:12:22):
Last thing, one last thing to worry about. Great.
Rob Pintwala (01:12:25):
H how have you wanted to ask you a little bit about being a, being a mother to be before we run out of time? You know, how did that initially kind of change your outlook on, on things and, and, and, you know, where does that fall in kind of meaning and importance to you being a mother?
Jillian Harris (01:12:44):
You know, it's really interesting because up until now our kids were just babies, right? They're babies are toddlers, they're cute. You get to decide what happens with their day, you get to make decisions for them. And so I, I found it was just really easy. Like, it was really easy to like somebody, my friend Michelle and Kenny, which by the way, Kenny is the one that came in the mushroom, so I'm just gonna call him out right now. But anyways Michelle and Kenny, they're such good friends of ours, amazing humans. Michelle was saying to me like, just wait until they're older, like they're gonna need you more. I'm like, how is that possible? Like, I'm literally breastfeeding every three hours, like how can this human need me more? But I, I realize it now because they're actually little human beings that require conversations and they have their own opinions and they have feedback that happen throughout the day.
And you need to be present for it, and you need to be thinking about how you're gonna react to that and how that's gonna affect them. And both our kids are just incredible kids, but I would say I worry about Leo's confidence which is really shocking for me because I feel like I'm a very confident person. But I worry about that with him. He's a little bit shorter and he is a little bit smaller and just, I just, there's something in him that I can tell he needs help with his confidence and Annie doesn't need help with her confidence, but she is very emotional, which is totally fine, which is totally fine, but it is like a definite rollercoaster around here. I'm very stubborn, so I'm always thinking about like, how can I best support my children so that I raise these humans to be well-rounded and to have confidence and to love themselves and to love others and to be kind.
And so being a mom, you know, it's just, it takes up so much more mental space than I even said in this mom group today. I'm like, motherhood did not prepare me for this. Like, signing them up for baseball and who's on their team and are they gonna enjoy it? And then what camps are they gonna go to? And Leo's telling me at class he's getting bullied, but is he actually getting bullied or is he just saying that? But if he's just saying that that means something too, like why is he saying that? And, and you know, you know, you're always just wondering like, how can I, I wanna give these kids just like the best upbringing and be the best mom. And last night, evenings are not good for me. I'm a good morning parent. Justin's a good nighttime parent, which was great.
We balance each other really well. But I'm always tell myself about this time of day, like, remember, you're gonna be cranky tonight. Like, I'm always so irritable at night. My work is very I'm always on, I'm always like communicating, creating, telling stories. And so by the time nighttime comes around, I don't want to talk to my husband or kids, like, I just want everybody to shut up, eat their dinner and get the health of bed. Like I, and all they wanna do is talk to me. I'm like, oh, so what? Like when Justin goes to golf, I'm like, yes. Like, oh, I can just put on a TV and just zone out. Which is also not healthy. And hopefully he doesn't listen to this whole podcast. I know he'll get bored of listening to my vo voice after 15 minutes. But anyways, last night my mom brought over their favorite yogurt and they started playing with the yogurt and like splattering it on each other and whatnot.
And I was like, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. Come on you guys, don't be silly. Let's get in the bathtub. And I was like, I was telling them, stop that. Don't do that. That's gonna get in her hair. Like, and I knew they were going in the bathtub and like, what's a big deal? It's just yogurt. But I was very irritable, I was very cranky and I got them in the bathtub and I decided in my head that it was one of those nights I had to give them melatonin. I was like, I can't even do bedtime tonight. I'm gonna let them melatonin do the the job anyhow. I get them to sleep and I'm lying in bed. And what's the first fricking Instagram post that I pull up on my phone is this parenting post that says, your kids are only young ones.
Literally let them smear yogurt on themselves. Let them, I was like, are you attacking me? Let them just let them be kids. And I'm like, looking at my poor kids that are zonked out from melatonin and I literally had to like wake them up to be like, I'm sorry about the yogurt. I'm sorry about the yogurt. Like, you guys can spread yogurt on your faces tomorrow, <laugh>. But yeah, I feel guilt. Like I just, I feel guilt and I ju I think it's a normal parent thing, but you just want, you just wanna be the best parent. And sometimes you're just like, am I, was I too grouchy? Was I too, did I give them enough time and attention? Was I too worried about the house being clean? I don't know. So yeah, it's, it's, parenting is hard. It's a trip, man.
Rob Pintwala (01:17:06):
No doubt. Yeah,
Jillian Harris (01:17:08):
Justin just walked in <laugh>. I'm on a podcast right now with a company called First Session this guy Rob who you can come meet. He created it and it's an online platform that connects patients with therapists. So smart, brilliant, right? <Laugh>. Yeah.
Rob Pintwala (01:17:25):
Jillian Harris (01:17:26):
Rob Pintwala (01:17:29):
Maybe to, I know, I know you gotta wrap up here, but I know Kim had a had a, you wrote down a question just about like female led businesses. Do you wanna end with
Kim Foster Yardley (01:17:38):
That? I mean, I just, yeah, thanks Rob for the prompt, but I feel like Jillian's been answering me all along and even just what you said now about being a mom. You know, the question I had written down was really for female business owners and if you have any, like, from that perspective, I think just even spoke speaking as a mom, like what, what that's been like for you. You've been, you are very candid about that and I'm just wondering like what kinds of things do you do to support yourself around that? You know, what is the challenges and some of the opportunities you found, the possibilities you have found?
Jillian Harris (01:18:15):
Totally. I mean, it's so interesting because I, it when I, I often say, oh, wasn't supposed to be like this, right? It wasn't like moms were supposed to raise their children and, but like really, what was it supposed to be like? Like it's the world has evolved and what I have been happy living in the fifties, being a stay-at-home mom. Like, would that have satisfied me? Sometimes I think I like it. I would get dressed up in my cute little dress and I would bake all day and I would have parties and we'd probably end up drinking vodka at two o'clock in the afternoon. Like who knows what would happen. But anyhow but it is it, I mean I think it's just interesting all around being a parent and being a business owner for sure. I see, you know, Justin is such a good dad and he's so hands on.
I'm a different parent in that I'm the one that is like organizing this and organizing that and Justin just, he doesn't feel like that he, he doesn't do it because it probably doesn't need to be ha it doesn't need to happen. Like he just goes with the flow and things just work out and that's sufficient. Like what I do he thinks is just like, it's unnecessary. The amount of planning that I do, I think it is necessary. Anyhow, I think it's a really interesting time because most parents have to work two jobs. So that is something to recognize and a lot of women have just, even if they don't have to work, two jobs have evolved and that they realize they're not satisfied with just just being a stay-home mom. Some women want to start their own business, but ultimately even when you want to start your own business, even if you don't have to, it, the responsibilities of being a parent and a partner and taking care of a house are still there.
And so I'm very, very lucky and that we have a nanny who also does the house. And she's incredible. Absolutely incredible. And I even just said today before this call, I said Annie, to, to my daughter, what would we do without Auntie Sisa? What would you be doing right now? Like we'd all be laying in the corner a fetal position. Like we could not live without her. She is literally like our, our saving grace. But even with her, it is a challenge because you are try in meetings, trying to sign your kids up for camp, you're thinking about what's for dinner. I'm thinking about Leo's confidence. I'm thinking about him today. He's gotta feel a trip, but how's that gonna work? And you're also thinking about your staff and I'm thinking about dinner and hosting Easter and I also really want to get to yoga and when's that gonna happen and why do I have to drink this, this juice?
And you know, it's all these, all these different things that, that sort of layer on top of themselves. And sometimes I think it's healthy for your brain, it keeps your brain like active and excited and, and sometimes it does lead to, to burnout. And I always tell our alumni on Jilly Academy, so I started this I started this company called Jilly Academy and it's an online platform that helps teach people's small businesses, entrepreneurs, creators. But I always tell them, I always ask, how do I do it all? And the answer is, I don't do it all. And when I do try to do it all, there's, it comes at a cost. Something always falls off the wagon or suffers because of it or I have a, a mentee tb. But you just have to continually be interviewing yourself and, and checking in with yourself and saying like, what, how does this feel good and what doesn't feel good and what can I do differently?
If you have the opportunity, I mean there are some parents that just have no choice. They have to run their household, they have multiple kids, sometimes single moms, single dads, and they have a, a business and you just have to do it. And that is when I think you have to work the hardest on yourself, on your green juice and your yoga and your sleep and the no alcohol. Like, you've got to make sure that your brain, your body can handle that cuz you are working in a high performance mode. And yeah, it's really, it's a really interesting time, but I'm grateful for it all. Like there are some days where I feel burnt out and I wished it was this way or that way, but ultimately I, I really don't have anything to complain about except for this juice
Rob Pintwala (01:22:15):
Jillian Harris (01:22:16):
That's it. Constructive pain, joy, constructive pain. Yeah. Yeah. But you really do have to be analyzing yourself and, and those days that you do have the meltdowns, I mean it's an emotion. Emotions are there for a reason and I always tell the kids like, it's okay to get mad, sad, scream, yell, even swear, whatever. Like as long as you're not hurting other people, you've got those emotions in you for a reason. There's a reason why anger I exists, it's okay to be angry, but then checking in with those emotions and seeing like, okay, is it okay to be angry all the time? Am I angry all the time? Am I sad all the time? Like, what's going on here? So I think the goal is to be happy most of the time. That's sort of the goal I think <laugh>.
Rob Pintwala (01:22:57):
I love it. Thank you. Absolutely love it. Love it. I think that's a fantastic place to end it here. Thank you so much, Jill. Yeah. we'll we're gonna be following you along and thanks for sharing all your wisdom and lessons here.
Jillian Harris (01:23:11):
This was really fun and I feel like I got a free 90 minute therapy session <laugh>, that we're also gonna be able to share with the world. So super, super excited about that. I was super impressed when I first heard about first session, but I haven't dug really deep into it and I'm really excited to, to look into it more, even for my mom. I think it would be great even for myself. So congratulations on what you've built as well, Rob and Kim, and it's been such a pleasure chatting with both of you.
Rob Pintwala (01:23:38):
Thank you so much. Thank
Kim Foster Yardley (01:23:40):
You. Thank you so much.
Rob Pintwala (01:23:54):
Thank you for listening to this episode of The Actualized Podcast. You can find the show notes for this episode as well as all other episodes at first session.com/podcast. If you like this podcast, please leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform. Thank you again and we'll see you next time.
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