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How to Create Belonging and Community (at Any Age), With Radha Agrawal (Episode 51)

Melyssa Griffin

27 min

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I’m a former high school teacher turned entrepreneur who loves few things more than a good hug, hopping on a flight to anywhere, and teaching people like you how to live an abundant and limitless life.

I’m Melyssa Griffin

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What can happen when we focus on belonging and community above everything else? 

For today’s guest, Radha Agrawal, it was the inspiration behind multiple businesses. Not only that, but it was the launching pad for taking a never-been-done-before idea and turning it into the perfect recipe of cultivating belonging and community for others. 

Radha is the creator of Daybreaker, a company that hosts early morning sober dance parties that promote play and connection.

Radha had a sober experience at a festival that revealed to her that dance was the key to unlocking our confidence and life force. In using her own desire to get out of the hamster wheel of entrepreneurship and her deep need for community, she created an experience unlike any other. (Instead of alcohol, they even serve green juice, coffee, and tea!) 

She is also the author of Belong: Find Your People, Create Community, and Live a More Connected Life, a book informed by the things she has learned since appointing belonging and community as the thread that runs through all of her endeavors. 

I loved this conversation because we don’t just talk about what it means to belong to a community, but also about what it means to belong to ourselves (and why that journey is the most important one we can go on).

Radha knows firsthand that to live a Limitless Life™, you first need to break free of beliefs and insecurities that keep you from yourself. Only then can you move ahead to belong any and everywhere you desire to go. 

I’m so excited for you to hear this episode!

Listen to the episode below:

This episode discusses topics like…

  • Where to begin in finding your own place of belonging.
  • How Daybreaker shifted into something we all didn’t expect during this time of social distancing. 
  • The way that Radha integrates that sense of belonging into her hiring process.
  • Radha’s “backpack” analogy that will allow you to view every human with more love and understanding.
  • Moving through her fear with her community during these turbulent times. 

By the way, I created an entirely free, 5-day at-home digital retreat called Limitless Entrepreneur. It’s all about creating a new income stream in less than a week, as well as reprogramming the beliefs that are keeping you from a no-limits business and life. Click the image below to sign up, it’s free!
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Did this episode help you expand what’s possible for your life or business? Do you think your social media followers may learn something, too? I’d be forever grateful if you shared it on social media. 🙂 If you do, tag @melyssa_griffin and @limitlesslifepodcast so I can repost you! Woohoo!

What kind of role does community play in your life? What can you do to build a stronger one (including within yourself)?

Thank you SO much for being here, sweet friend. I’m honored to walk this journey with you. See you in the next episode!

xoxo
Melyssa

Read the Episode Transcript Here

Melyssa: You’re listening to the limitless life™ podcast and today we are chatting about how a never been done before idea turned into the recipe for true belonging and community. That Today’s guest is somebody that I find personally inspiring because she’s a serial entrepreneur and author, investor and a global community builder. Her name is Radha Agrawal. And in 2013, she started a company and a movement called daybreaker, which hosts early morning sober dance parties around the world to promote play, and connection. And I actually went to my first day breaker with some friends a few months ago, it was a 90s themed party that started at five or six in the morning and offer drinks like coffee and green juice instead of alcohol. There was a DJ playing and tons of people who showed up to just get down and have some fun together. But that event was far from the first day breaker and that route is hosted. In the past seven years. Her company has

Hosted dance parties around the world for more than half a million people. And as you’ll hear in today’s episode, it started small with a simple but courageous idea and it’s grown into a global community. Rob has also started companies like thanks period underwear and live it up, which is a text message based life school. And in her book called belong, she shares her tried and true methods for creating belonging and community in the world. I think you’re really gonna like what she has to say on that topic. And in this interview, we dive into pretty much all the things from the broadest start in investment banking to hosting dance parties to ultimately creating true belonging in her life and for other people. You will love the range of wisdom that she has and her inspiring words about what it means to create a limitless life. Let’s do this. I’m Melissa Griffin. And while I was in my 20s, I turned a hobby blog into a multi-million dollar company. Now what I’ve discovered after working with thousands of entrepreneurs is that the greatest thing standing in the way of success isn’t another business tactic or marketing strategy. It’s your own mindset. Now, I believe that you’re meant for more than just the status quo. So on this show, you’ll feel like you’re sitting down with a friend, who’s here to help you transform your fears and roadblocks into a truly limitless version of yourself. It’s time to upgrade your life and business from the inside out. Let’s do this.

Hey, Radha, welcome to the show.

Radha: Thanks for having me. How’s it going?

Melyssa:  And going so good. We’re really excited to just chat with you and the genius of who you are. So I actually went to my first day breaker a few months ago was the 90s themed party and it was so much fun. I’ve heard about it for years. It’s something that I think a lot of people know about and you’ve touched upon.

Half a million people with this whole idea of daybreaker. So seven years ago, you had the idea to start it this morning dance party brought people together and created community. Why was it so important for you to create this especially at that point in time?

Radha: Yeah. I mean, I think for me, I was in the hamster wheel of entrepreneurship, you know, so I was just like, running in the hamster wheel building. My company is when I was under a company called things with my twin sister. We were just launching a Kickstarter campaign for that business. And then I was I had also just started a children’s nutrition education company. I see kids about food and nutrition education, those very, I’m still doing very fascinated with that. And I just think that you know, as a, you know, woman in her early 30s, I was single, I was, you know, going million miles an hour and I wanted to go out at night, let my hair down. And, you know, I think at the time, I didn’t really know what belonging really meant.

I think when you’re an entrepreneur, you’re especially as a woman, you’re often leaning into your masculine so much. And you’re often hiding the beautiful feminine power that I came to discover as being actually my biggest source of power. But I was hiding that side of me because I thought that that’s what I needed to do to be taken seriously as an entrepreneur to raise the money to do all the things I was really sitting in a mastermind and hanging out with people who didn’t inspire me, because I really felt like I was I didn’t really belong, but I was doing what in my deep, like sort of depths in my heart, but I was like, still going to clubs and like, doing all the things that, you know, that kids in the scene would be doing, but I just knew that it wasn’t me. And wasn’t where I was thriving. Just as a human. I was running away from, you know, the person I was and I want to come home to myself. So daybreaker was very much the beginning of that kind of homecoming. It was just sort of this moment, you know, I was 34

And I just gone back to my first burn, Burning Man for those who haven’t been. And I’ll never forget just like riding my bicycle to at the festival while everyone was sleeping for the first time it was by myself without the crutch of my twin sister or friends around me. I’m such a social creature and I just decided to go out to deep playa my bicycle out. It was at 3am in the morning, and I get to this bus, this giant bus called robot heart and at the time, I had no idea what it was it was a really cool art car with like, craziest sounds ever heard. And I remember just throwing my bike down and you know, for the first time in my entire life, getting out of my head sober By the way, getting out of my head and into my body for the first time and just dancing and like Lego and like fully just releasing all of the self judgment that I’ve had towards myself, all of the judgment. I had towards the

I just I appeared in public or whatever, and I just danced for myself. And I remember all this beautiful unlocking happen that moment. I’m just like, wow, it’s my feminine energy it’s moving the way my body is meant to move, it’s connecting to myself. It’s that is the beginning of confidence is when you can actually come home to your body and move the way your body is meant to move confidently like doing it in a way that feels exactly the way you want to express yourself. That is your superpower. And that was when I unlocked for me and I just was like, wait a minute, dance and unlocking dance is the ticket is the actual unlocking of life. So that became the big metaphor that I began exploring. And so when I came home to New York, I realized Wait a minute, how are so many of these unlocking movements relegated to mostly festivals, right? Like why don’t we have these unlocking moments in the cities where we live, where we’re working in our lives.

Waking up and we’re doing the thing where the hamster wheel and you know why can’t we find that unlocking there and and how can I create that instead of complaining about it which was what most people will do is complain and bitch and moan I’m not a complainer I love doing and I love creating and so my good friend and I, we were having late nights waffles and we just said, you know, what if we created something here that brought the sort of burner spirit that then infuse a bunch of things that we believe like, I’m not a sober person, but I really believe that your homecoming starts with a clean experience. And so daybreaker was really born long story short, as an experiment in big cities, perhaps the most daunting city to start something, you know, especially in the world of nightlife. You know, it was really like a way to come home to myself and help my friends and my community and my new friends and create a community where I belonged. And like, you know, really develop the community of my dreams and do that with all the ingredients that made me feel free. So

For that, that was like taking away all the shitty ingredients and nightlife. So like removing the mean bouncer, you know, replacing it with a hugging committee. Right? So we have a housing committee, every neighborhood event, replacing the alcohol with green juice, coffee tea, adding performative elements and then of course during in the morning, right when your energy is the most full, and we’re excited to show you the most optimistic, you’re the most joyful, you’re the most energetic, ready to connect. So you’re like, Alright, what if we did something in New York, but like, in a time of day where no one’s actually socializing? So let’s do a party on a Wednesday morning from six to 9am before going to work and see people show up. So that was the genesis of daybreaker was bringing dance self expression play community belonging, like all of that into Gotham City. And then I think that was the moment changed my life was just like the doing of right and I think some people are so afraid of starting doing something and you know, for all those listening the entrepreneurs, young entrepreneurs aspiring

It just starts with just doing and you don’t never, you don’t ever know what’s going to happen. And for us, the worst case scenario is no one would have shown up that morning, we would have had a dance with just five votes in a room, and then we would have gone home that day. And that was it. But that’s not what happened. You know, 200 people showed up. And the next one, you know, 400 people showed up in the next one fiber video, people shut up and then go to San Francisco, in Los Angeles, and then, you know, all over the world and the rest of history. We’re in 20 cities around the world now and over 500,000 community members. That’s so amazing. And what I love about it is that it was born from a place of coming home to yourself. It wasn’t born from a place of I have to do this. It was really from this changed my own life. And I want to bring it to more people and create this sense of community and homecoming for communities around the world. That’s right. Yeah, yeah, that’s right. Is there a moment from daybreaker that stands out to you, you’ve done so many at this point. I honestly I will say this daybreaker live the first one that we did. Yeah.

Just shut down all of our live events across 20 cities and we had to launch a virtual experience to keep servicing our country members who are dealing with such isolation, you know, kind of experiences and you know, depression, anxiety, I mean, suicidal thoughts like, you know, domestic violence, there’s so much happening right now in the country, and that we, you know, we have to continue, I believe daybreaker was built for these times. I really do. And I think that when everyone was socialized learning wearing masks around New York, we’re in the epicenter here in Brooklyn, COVID-19. And, you know, the first event that we did was really at the beginning of this sort of, kind of whatever, and to stay home, and then social distance and all that and people were feeling really sort of scared. And so we launched daybreaker Live, which is our first ever virtual live stream. And when I tell you like we had 38 countries represented over 3000 people purchase tickets to support our community to keep the community going. That’s what went on there.

Forget because, you know, in seven years of doing daybreaker we have always wanted to bring all of our cities together in what we thought was going to be an IRL festival, right? Like everyone meet us, but then to have the technology through zoom and like great cameras, you know, having just like, great sound equipment available and all the technology that exists today I’m just so grateful for and, and we had 38 countries represented in the first daybreaker live stream and seeing everybody holding up the signs of their cities and we know we had a packing list rather bring a miss shift kit like with them. So a photo of London they’re missing right down the city. They were from soup cans to do a workout together and like that sort of thing. And I just was unbelievable seeing grid after grid after grid of just people dancing being married couchsurfing together on their couches. You know, I haven’t felt that kind of, you know, visceral joy in a while and I think you know,

What I’ve learned was that without the low lows, you can’t experience the high highs. But I think that’s what is Corona, what I call cocoa, this cocoa virus is is teaching us is just that you don’t need much to be happy. You just need music, dance each other connection, play and a sense of you know, we’re all in this together. And I think that is taking us back to the basics like away from all the other frivolous needs that are being put on us by let’s be real, like the world of finance and the world of, of investors like that whole world. And of course, I’m caught up in that world too as being an entrepreneur. every entrepreneur in this country is working for their investor who’s working for it’s like, when you stop that cycle altogether and you get back to what is important to humanity, what is important to life, you begin to ask yourself, why am I doing this project in the first place? Or when I started? Am I still sort of answering the call that I’m answering when I first started this project?

Am I now sort of somewhere else off the path, because I got caught up in fundraising and this and that and having to, you know, deal with all these other kind of external energies that have now impacted my original, you know, goals and dreams. And so, as entrepreneurs, we often will get veered off the path because of investments that we are raising or, you know, or teams that we’re building or advisors that we’re bringing in. And you know, this time is a wonderful time to look inward. And then ask yourself, like, why am I doing this?

Melyssa: I actually got tears in my eyes when you were describing the virtual daybreaker that you did and how many people there were and how they just represented their countries and represented just the sense of global community. I also really felt connected to how you’re describing the whole COVID thing. This is like this is a global pause. This is a time for us to all just be thinking about reevaluating our commitments.

Thinking about who we are in the world, what we’re giving our time and priorities to and if maybe there are some things that can shift in our lives and in the whole global society to that might actually make a huge difference.

Radha: I mean, I think that, you know, unless we realize that, you know, humans are the most magical, but we’re also the most destructive. So we are the virus, I mean, like, literally and so, us actually stopping and being in our homes, is allowing, I mean, you heard about the Venetian canals being filled with like, you know, dolphins and white swans are back in there, the waterways are clear, they’re no longer Brown. You know, I mean, like, the world is quickly, kind of quickly coming back. And we have to ask ourselves, like, Are we the ones who are being stopped, you know, sort of from what we want to be doing? Or are we being asked lovingly by Mother Earth to reevaluate how we’re showing up for her, you know, so I think that’s really where the real work lies. Yeah.

Melyssa: 100% Yeah. And I feel like if we don’t learn the lesson now, then it’s going to come back later this year, and it’s just going to be like, you gotta learn this lesson before I’m gonna let you go out of your house and, and start doing normal.

Radha: I mean, they say, we’ve got like, we’ve literally got 11 years to figure this out before the Earth’s temperature gets too high that we’re actually all doomed. So I think this is step one, honestly of her big warning of saying, Hey, you know, here’s what happens when the Earth’s temperature goes up a little bit. new viruses come in, and they are deadly. And they’re pandemic deadly, you know? So that’s just and they’re, they’re saying, because, you know, global temperatures are increasing. And so there’s all these new viruses that are coming into play. So this is just one piece of that.

Melyssa: Interesting. Yeah, yeah, I think we’re in for a ride over the next few years. Well, you wrote an amazing book called belong, find your people create community and live a more connected life. And for somebody who’s created community for half a million people around the world do you know a thing or two about what you’re talking about? So how would you define belonging

Radha: I think belonging is a feeling it’s an exhale of home. That’s what belonging is. It’s a feeling whereas community is a space in which where you experience belong, right? So community, to me is a space that we create in which you experienced the feeling of, I’m home. So that’s what belonging is, to me is is very much a place where you get to feel fully seen for all of your colors and loved for all of your colors. And you feel like you can, you know, talk or not talk, you know, for hours in the words of Best in Show, but it just yet to me, that’s what it is. It’s an exhale home.

Melyssa: I love that definition. And based on that, you have a quote that says, longing starts with yourself, you have to know who you are first. Beautiful. I love that. That’s right.

Radha: And in my book, I have 20 exercises in my book and the first half the head fake is that you buy the book because you think that it’s about building their community but

Really the first half is about going in, I always have to go in to go out. You know, whenever I meet with a new potential coming the architect for a daybreaker city, my first evaluation is around, you know, have they done the internal work? Do they belong to themselves? And do they feel connected that we talked about that the dancer inside of the The Confident dancer inside of you? Is that person there and have they returned home to themselves? And if they’re home to themselves, they’re able to radiate that real sense of that real authentic energy out to the world, which will then attract the right community members to that community within the city that we’re launching it right. So there’s been multiple, you know, community arcades, I’ve interviewed and I’ve met with who, after, you know, two days of spending time together, I noticed that they they were still judging themselves. So they’re still you know, sort of feeling a lot of stuff they had to come home to, right. And so, we have done a conversation and end up being this beautiful, tearful conversation about hey, you know, we will

Want you to build a neighborhood community in your city? But step one is like, let’s come to you first. And then once we get to my book, I’ll walk them through several exercises to do. And then I’ll say, hey, like, take this time, take six months, go do that, and then come back and let’s talk. And it’s always led to just beautiful conversation, beautiful letters. After that, instead of, you know, an angry like, you rejected me, it’s usually like, Wow, thank you, I really needed that, you know, and in doing that, now I can lead from a place for build a community and a place of authenticity, not from a place of like, desperation or place of like, I need to versus I want to write and I think that’s so often what I find with community builders or community architects in general is so often a community architect that I meet, I’ll ask them the question like, do you belong to the community that you’re building? Are you a community member of the community building, and so on? The community argued, I will say Actually, no, I’m not. I’m on the outside. Looking in

Right. And so so often a community leader or community architect will, will be the one creating the container because they’ve been wanting to do it. But he still don’t feel like they can really connect to that community. So, so important for any new business owner and a new community architect, any new community builder to really take that time to go in, connect to your via charts and my book, it’s like your values, your interests and your abilities. Like, what do you value today? So it might be different every year, right? Like, every couple years, you might be like, okay, like, now I value gardening and cooking like, you know, but today I value, you know, building out my podcast and my community online to really serve other women or whatever, right? So our values change or repeat for me, my values today are I’m a new mother, I’m a 14 month old at home. So my values very much skewed to family and education and nutrition and the environment and making sure she has a home and earth to live on in 11 years, you know, so my values have changed. And then you know, what am I interested in, so like

You know, what am I interested in pursuing today? What am I interested in exploring? What am I interested in, in general? Right? Like write that down. And then your ability is not like your abilities as in like, I’m good at Excel. But your ability is in a sense that like, I’m great at gathering people at my house, or I’m going to take out the trash, like, I love doing dishes. I love sending out really pretty invitations to people, right? Like, what are your abilities as it relates to building a community? Like what comes naturally for you? Do you like cooking? Do you like, you know, I mean, I have a girlfriend who literally has a bag of like little lights that she brings everywhere she goes, because she can’t stand overhead lights. So and then we have a gathering, she’ll come over and then she’ll turn off all right, got her a little bag of tea candles and like lights or whatever. And then it will make the room all vibey and like, thank God, because here like she brings the light, you know. And then I have another friend who always brings like instruments wherever she goes. And she should always have like, a little sound bowl, a little ukulele a little you know, blah, blah, blah, little bells and so whatever comes out

If you always like have you for everybody for play, so like her ability is music and sound right by the man’s light rather friend always giving everyone massages like Allianz coming over because he’s going to, you know, rub everyone’s shoulders in the cavern feels the super oxytocin release. And so, you know, I think, you know, everyone has a different ability that they bring. And I think if you identify what that is, you’ll have community for life. Hey, limitless listener. We’ll get back to the show in just a moment. But I wanted to take 20 seconds to invite you to the free at home digital retreat that I created just for you. It’s called limitless entrepreneur and it’s all about helping you to create an abundant, fearless mindset, all growing your online business. You want to join just visit limitless entrepreneur retreat, calm to register, it’s totally free. That’s limitless entrepreneur. retreat.com. All right friend. Back to the show.

Melyssa: I love that what you were talking about when you’re hiring people and how you need them to belong to themselves before they can actually lead a community for you. I can imagine a lot of people who are listening right now and actually feeling like those community architects that you were hiring and thinking like, Oh my gosh, I don’t belong to myself, What do I do? How do I create belonging within myself? Where would they start? values interests abilities? What else might they do to know

Radha: For me that the first actually ever did as well as in my book is I dreaded timeline is my whole life.

Right? So I drew a timeline, you know, it’s like, all the moments in time of where did I grow up? Where do I go to school? You know what, I play sports or were they part of this club? Or what? Who are my friends like, Who would I spend time with? When was I happiest? When was I truly feeling the most belonging in those aspects of my life? And if I never have Okay, well, what am I really like? What have I learned over the last X number of years of my life that has led me to today that I actually would want to have in a community so for me, it was

Like, playing sports growing up, or my neighborhood where I grew up, you know, as a young person, I always felt like okay, it was a sense of place like freelance would never work for me because I feel most belonging when I’m actually like landed in a place. And I can build a community who lives in close proximity. And in fact, I mean, there’s there’s a lot of research that shows that it’s really hard to feel a sense of belonging if you are a freelance, not like if you’re not in freelance, but like if you’re, I mean, I say freelance because virtually freelance that you’re nomadic, there’s such a sexism of being nomadic, but there’s that adventurous side of being nomadic and he can belong to the world around you, of course, and like you can certainly feel a sense of belonging to nature. But ultimately, as humans, we cannot survive or thrive without social connections, right? Like that is truly the human experience as meaningful social relationships. And so if we don’t have a sense of place, and even with work, like going to a job, going to work, you’re like, I don’t want to go to to work here.

But when I’ve interviewed hundreds of freelancers and those working from home, and those who cross between the two, it’s been very interesting to hear that. And also to come out to around the difference between this sense of place the sense of connection you have to your work when there’s somewhere to go, especially as you’re building a team, of course, right. And I think that there’s something to be said about that. And the same thing with home is this having a neighborhood to really sink your teeth into like, my next door neighbor, George is 70 and blew my neighborhood a year ago, I just had a baby and my he took out my trash three days a week for the entire year because I had a baby and I’d watch him through my window. I said, like, George, what are you doing? And he’s like, you had a baby. This is what we do. And neighborhood we take out your trash for the first year, I was like crying and I’m like, here’s my book, I wrote a book called belong and like, you make me feel like I belong and like, you know, this whole thing. I bought him a pie and there’s like a beautiful neighborhood experience. And I just know that. For me, that’s a very important feeling as I went through my timeline of my life, so coming back to that going

Through Thailand of your life and really ask yourself, there’s a dozen questions in my book, like, when are you coming home to yourself? When were you being alive? When are you running away from yourself? When were you most afraid? When were you, you know, not spending time with people who gave you energy, you know, and when we gave you energy, so going through all of that audit, all of a sudden, you start realizing, Oh, right. There were pockets of moments in my life that I thought deeply like, you know, and how do I cultivate that back into my life and, and it’s never too late. That’s the other thing. Also, as we go through about nine or 10 inflection points in our lives, from when we you know, move to college or go to a new city or when we get married, we have a child and we get divorced, if we get divorced, when we retire in this new city is like, there’s so many moments in your life where you’re starting over, like you’re about to move to Brooklyn. And you’re gonna start over in some ways, and if you don’t have a huge community, and people often will get more afraid the older they get to start over because there’s a sense of, well, there’s no school. So how am I going to have these daily collisions with people like how do I do this thing? So step one, Like when you’re starting over from scratch and you’re like, Okay, this is like a return to myself, but then be like, where do I start building my community? So step one is returning returning to yourself is going that timeline of your life write down the qualities you’re looking for your friend, write down the qualities that you need to embody in order to attract the friends that you want. Right? All this is in my book as well. But just there’s all of these exercises that you can do to begin asking yourself questions like wait a minute, why I’ve been hanging out people who are shoulder sugar’s, you know, who are like when I’m like, Hey, you know, hey, do you want to go this thing? And they’re like, Yeah, sure. Whatever, you know, great. Yeah. You know, versus like, Oh my gosh, yes. Like let’s call it an FYI if a fuck yeah, friend, like you want to surround yourself with fuck yeah, friends, you know, it’s a very important quality that you’re looking for in your friends if you can embody the qualities of the fuck yeah, friend, then you’ll also have friends for life, you know? So it’s like, those are all the things I want. And if you’re not an FYI, why aren’t you and FYI, like what’s in your backpacks never actually has also that’s like, we go through like what’s in your backpack, like My mother died of cancer My father was abusive. My teacher, my friends, my boyfriend’s my this my that. So my backpack is full of my baggage and my shit. Let me unpack what’s in my bag and see how it’s impacted. The person that I am has made me move further away from the authentic version of myself based on what’s in my backpack, right? So like, as you begin going through all of these exercises, you begin realizing, oh my God, I’ve been wearing all these layers. And let me just take these layers off and just be like, okay, like, let me remove all the labels. I’m not an introvert I’m not an extrovert. I’m an introvert, we are all these things. I am not socially anxious. I am not a totally I can talk to anybody. I’m both of these things. You know, like, once you remove all these labels that we’ve piled on ourselves, we begin to find that freedom of joy of being human, which is all of the things you know, so that’s when you get to really come home to yourself is like what does that look like? When you remove all the label? You look inside your backpack, you ask yourself the question for your friend, you look at your timeline of your life. All of that begins to sort of piecework what that belong to South looks like and then you’re ready to go out and find your tribe from that place of authenticity. And then there’s a lot that goes into going out and finding your tribe as well. When you move to Brooklyn, and you’re like, Okay, I love hats and I love personal development and I love gardening and I love cooking and I love burning them, you know, you go to Burning Man. Okay, so I love blah, blah, blah. And then so so based on all of these interests, right, he then start plotting your basically your four phases of friendship. So first, your exploratory group, so exploring all these communities, then you’re like, Okay, I like this cooking group. I like this thing. I like that thing at least first amendment rights authorship group 10 from darlin start participating in those groups, so exploration to participation to the outer core to inner core. So that’s how you begin finding that connected tribe.

Melyssa: Yeah, I really love the backpack metaphor of like, I feel like a lot of people excited experience things that are really challenging and then just put it in the backpack and don’t look at it and they’re like, I don’t want to feel that anymore. So I’m just gonna leave it in the backpack. And then we go out and we try to create community and friendships and then we’re coming at it from this place of pain and and like you said, not belonging not being authentic because there’s so much in the backpack that we’re not actually feeling and expressing and so how can we possibly create authentic connection when we’re not being authentic with ourselves? So I really love that because it’s really just speaking to healing the things that are there acknowledging them even as simply as that

Radha: you acknowledge that I have this exercise also. That is like when you’re walking down the street, of course, past COVID-19. And even now, when you walk down the street with your masks on, you know, I always look at everybody and I ask myself, you know, I imagine an imaginary backpack on every single person walking down the street, so that as I’m walking down the street, instead of having a judgment on that person, if they’re like, have a negative energy, they’re emanating, I kind of imagined it. What’s an her backpack is being very heavy, or having something that’s like painful that they’re carrying with them, which is what’s making their energy be that way. Or someone who is like a joyful, skipping down the street type person, imagine their backpack to be filled with like, you know, stuff with other managing their backpack really well, you know, so it’s like, I just look at every person walking the street is and when you do that, you end up judging people less, you know, and it ends up being a much more kind of a loving neighborhood experience. And you begin seeing everybody as a beautiful individual.

Melyssa: Right, right. And it like opens you up to create connection with everyone to because they got it, like you said a judgement of, well, they’re a mean person, so I hate them. It’s like, right, there weren’t very nice today because they’re probably going through something or they have a reason why they’re showing up that way both if they’re showing up in a mean way or in a way that’s super loving, like that’s coming from somewhere. And so just recognizing the backpack in us all I love that. One thing that I find so interesting about you Is that you have started all types of organizations and companies in a lot of different spaces. You’ve started daybreaker these morning dance parties, things, underwear, you now have a project called Live it up for online classes that are text message based. And so what I’m curious about is, what’s the thread that ties it all together for you like what motivates you?

Radha: belonging, that’s it. It is blocking. I mean, sinks. It’s interesting, you know, it is about belonging, it’s coming home again, to your feminine energy. I mean, 100 million girls drop out of school every year because of their periods. And they don’t belong to their communities one week, every month, because they’re totally can’t go to school, or they’re thrown under their houses, or they’re pushed away from kind of living their best life because of something as natural as their periods. And so that, to me, is like holding a pair of underwear and women also for me, I think also actually, truthfully, it’s twofold. One is it’s belonging, but it starts with belonging for me, so it’s like, for me the pain point was, you know, I bleed every month. You know, really embarrassingly and heavily and I’d have to run out of meetings. And I just was like, how can I belong to the world of entrepreneurship and keep up with the kind of the male Johnson if I’m having to, like, run to the, you know, and like, embarrassingly, you know, deal with all this stuff every single month, and then I began looking into it. I’m like, wow, there’s so much shame around it, how do you remove the shame around it to really come home to our feminine power, blah, blah, blah. So that sort of that piece and then live it up. Which by the way, I want to offer for free 21 day challenge for free to all of your listeners. So I leave that out. And they can do my 21 day belong challenge for free and I lead you to a 21 day challenge. It actually mirrors a lot of the exercises in my book. So I’m happy to offer that to you and your listeners here today. But basically live it up is Yeah, it’s modern life school. And for me, it’s like I love learning, but I’m busy and learning on the go is really hard and I’d start a class that I would never do the second one. It’s like we all want to do a masterclass but like when we got the time to remember all Login to take 20 minutes. So you just want to create something that was, for me a pain point, which is like belonging to knowledge and feeling a sense of like, connection to endless knowledge that exists out there. And the people that made me feel a sense of belonging in the world of entrepreneurship in the world of leadership, are all people on the platform. So I have 20 plus guides on the liberal platform. And these are all my close friends who have been my biggest mentors, friends support network over the last, you know, decade in New York, and I wanted to share their wisdom with the world. And I was like, you know, here I am, I had this incredible resource, the network of resources, who have taught me so much, and it’s not fair that I get to just have their wisdom. So let me interview all you know, like 20. And I’ve continued to bring more people into the platform, but let me get them on this platform, ask them to share 21 challenges and teach them all the things that I learned from them. And so that’s been really really cool to help you know, thousands of people now Learn from some of my biggest mentors and my biggest inspirations and so and then delivered to your phone every morning. It’s like a three minute bite size challenge, like to me was like, Okay, cool. Like, that’s innovative. No one’s ever innovated in this space of education through the portal of text message. So we’re the first ones to do it.

Melyssa: When you approach a project, you often look at it from a place of like, Am I innovating?

Radha: Yes, it has to be one of one. If it’s not one of one is wasting my time. Yeah.

Melyssa: I love that. You’re all about that. I mean, we were talking about this before we started the call of you don’t stop feeling the fear. You just feel it and then do it anyways. And maybe over time, it becomes less and less. And I completely agree with that. And I know that a lot of people listening are thinking like, she started all these companies and all these really unique things like how does she move through the fear to work with investors and create companies that have never been done before especially? So how do you do that? How do you move through the fear when it pops up, especially when you’re innovating something that hasn’t been done before?

Radha: Again, It starts with community. I think once you have a base network, and I say network, but it’s like, actually I hate that word network. It’s a basic community of support. I actually hate the word networking. No one ever network always connect, right? There’s a big difference. I think that that’s where it starts. I think once you have a community, you’re no longer pitching. You’re just getting referrals and you’re getting support and you’re asking for advice. You know, I think step one is stop being so transactional and I think so often we’re like, we’re being taught to be so transactional, that if you genuinely are building a community of smart entrepreneurs, you know, kind of creative interesting you just start I met someone on an airplane like I’m not kidding, I was like you like you’re awesome. Like let’s join my whatsapp group. You You’re awesome. Like you join my whatsapp group like you You’re awesome. I’m doing my math. So now over the last like 10 years, like picked up all these amazing people and like they’re in this like really cool whatsapp group. And now there’s like a couple hundred of us or maybe 110 of us in the whatsapp group. They’re all like wonderful, interesting, amazing entrepreneurs but also like down to party and down to like workout. But these friends are the ones who showed up and bought the first tickets to go to daybreaker. You know, the very first one and these are the friends that bought the first underwear on Kickstarter. Even if they’re men, they bought a couple pairs for whoever, like on my Kickstarter campaign for things like when you have a community friends who truly genuinely support each other, you create that real connection point and there’s no jealousy, like literally anybody in the WhatsApp settings like I’m doing this event like everybody all hundred and buys a ticket to that event, or, Hey, guys, I’m gonna go fund me for this thing. Everyone’s reports go by, Hey guys, I’m doing a party, my house tonight seven o’clock and like, of the hundred 10 people that thread like 60 of them show up during me like, it’s like that type of like, if you show up for your community and don’t flake out and you like genuinely show up hard for your friends, then they show up for you. And it’s not a tit for tat but like it genuinely That’s just how it is. And the more giving and in service of your community you are, the more opportunity you have to fly. You know, and and i think that daybreaker would not be what it is today. Absolutely not. Had it not been for my community, even daybreaker live or virtual, our first one out of, you know, 110 friends, I think like 80 of them showed up to the first virtual like, live three weeks ago. And I’ve been around for seven years. I know we were like, Listen, like this is crazy time. And everyone’s like, I mean, I’m in I’m in, they all post their social media, they all bought ticket didn’t ask me sit under the guest list. Like they all they were all showed up, you know, and, and they’re showing up not just showing up with a showing up with energy and excitement for you. And I think that’s really where if every single person listening right now showed up hard for the communities that they want to belong to or they wanted to be a part of, or you know, or start if you don’t have a single committee member that you’re like, I’m inspired by then. Here are the steps I have in my book as well. But it’s like step one is give it a name, sort of Facebook group, you know, have a cadence that people can count on. And that’s it, spend $10 on like fun little things like gold stars or whatever, and then start your thing and like, and that’s it. And everything in life starts with community. I mean, especially today, and also like when you’re successful, like when Mickey and I sold our business last year to Kimberly Clark, and had an exit of a lifetime and it was like, life changing just like wild experience. Think about all golfers who had exits and had no one to share it with. Right? They’re like yeah, like I made it. I sold this for 100 million dollars and like, no one’s there because I backstab everyone my way and I wasn’t there to support anyone. I cancelled all my friend parties because because I was too busy working and now nobody’s there, celebrate my big win. Or if they are there, they’re using me because now I’m rich. You know what I mean? So it’s like, who’s actually there for you? So when we when we had a big exit last year, you know, we had this like, we took 40 Friends are actually with us to Cartagena, Colombia and just had this like massive foreign a ranger with them. And it just was like the most unbelievable experience because I had a community to celebrate it when at 40 years old, I’m 41 now, when at 30 years old, I looked myself in the mirror and I was like, I literally don’t have anyone except my sister, you know, that I really could feel connected with and so just in the last 10 years, from 30 to 40. All of this has happened because I took the time to focus on community. Right and not by thinking of community as like, okay, what’s my boyfriend once I, I built my business like those two things are priorities, whatever and the communities like last but if you make communities first they’ll unders your boyfriend you know, they’ll make you successful. Your business like community being first. Even we start having a boyfriend even with kids. My community is still right there like with my daughter and my husband like nothing has changed my community with the way I show up to my friends just because I have a kid like I haven’t disappeared. You know? That’s my biggest takeaway.

Melyssa: I love that advice so much that what I’m hearing is just like, stop trying to do it all alone, like be in our house on our computer, trying to create something by ourselves and totally forgetting the power of just this circular community. It’s beautiful. I have one last question for you. What is one piece of advice that you give to our listeners about how to live a life with no limits?

Radha: Well, yeah, so how to live life, no limits. I mean, such a mindset. It really just starts with so limitlessness starts with coming home to yourself first. And then the people you surround yourself with makes you feel limitless or limited, right? That’s it. It’s literally that is who you surround yourself with, will make you feel limitless. Those who who give you wings are the ones that make you feel in us but it starts with coming home to yourself and I mean, it’s it’s what I’ve been saying this whole entire time but yeah, limitlessness starts with first coming home to yourself and then surrounding yourself with people. who say fuck yeah, I’ll give you one things I love that gave me chills.

Melyssa: Surround yourself with people who make you feel limitless instead of limited that’s so beautifully put. Thank you. I appreciate you so much

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Melyssa Griffin

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