September 15, 2020

Episode #241 // Own Who You Are with Michelle Khouri

Michelle Khouri is back again, this time to talk with Emily about the importance of sharing your story, why own who you are, and how you can let your story fuel your business.

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"Once you are sharing your story, you stop selling."
- Emily

TOPICS DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE:

  • Why it's important to share your story
  • The difference between "selling" and "sharing"
  • How to determine what your story is
  • Defining and shaping who you are
  • Listening to your intuition and trusting your gut
  • How your perspective and values can shift and be redefined
  • The meaning of life and quantum physics (kind of)

RESOURCES DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE

MORE FROM Michelle Khouri

MORE FROM EMILY

Almanac Supply Co.

Episode Transcript

Emily Thompson 0:09
Being boss is owning who you are, knowing what you want, and actually making it happen. From the very beginning that has been one of the core messages of being boss. It's a mantra for creatives who want to cultivate confidence, set goals and earn success. But it's important for you to understand that these qualities of being a boss are intrinsically linked. You can't truly have one without the other. And to get it all rolling, you have to start at the beginning, you must own who you are. Welcome to being boss, a podcast for creatives, business owners and entrepreneurs who want to take control of their work and live life on their own terms. I'm your host, Emily Thompson. And today I'm going back to the basics. I'm starting at the beginning, a place where I see creatives and business owners getting stuck all the time. From struggling to narrow in on what it is you want to create, to figuring out how you want to grow and scale your business, to getting clear on what it is that you're here to accomplish for yourself. It starts with you, you must own who you are. Tell me dive into what you'll soon find is a really a very layered and deep topic. I invited my friend Michelle to join me who you heard from recently in those two episode interviews between Kathleen and me on the past, present and future of being boss. And just as her interviewing style was just what I was looking for and sharing the story of Kathleen and me with you. I also knew that she was exactly who I wanted to chat with when it came to sharing with you the importance of sharing your story of owning who you are and letting your story fuel your business. Michelle Cory is the CEO and founder of frequency media first of its kind company that seeks to democratize high quality and intentional podcast production based in Atlanta, Georgia. Since opening for business in 2018. Frequency has worked with Coca Cola, apple, the Statue of Liberty Ellis Island Foundation, Diane Von Furstenberg, and many others. She's also the host of her own podcast, the culture podcast, which feeds her obsession with arts and culture. You'll see here that we had a blast diving into this topic and we did so live to members of the being boss clubhouse, the second tier of the being boss community, and a monthly gathering we call clubhouse conversations, where our community of bosses got to not only watch this recording live, but take part in the conversation too, and in some places, fill in the blanks. Now just before we dive in, here's a message from our sponsor. Taking care of employees has never been more important. For years gastos have been helping more than 100,000 small business owners run payroll offerings. effects onboard new employees and more. They call it the people platform. And it doesn't just look nice, it works. Your payroll taxes are filed, deductions are calculated and your team gets paid. You can even offer health insurance and 401 K's get three months free after your first payroll when you go to gusto.com slash being boss. That's gussto.com slash being boss.

Emily Thompson 3:28
Welcome, Michelle.

Michelle Khouri 3:29
Thank you, that was all accurate and true. So thank you.

Emily Thompson 3:33
Right. I mean, you sent it to me. I know. I know.

Michelle Khouri 3:35
Well, you know, I'm right about myself.

Emily Thompson 3:38
Right. Right. Well, okay, perfect. So that's even what what we want to be talking about here today. So I brought Michelle because, because of the work she does, she is an expert in the realm of sharing your story which aligns with our theme this month, which is authenticity because to share your story, you have to know your story and to share you also actually have to own your story. You have to own who you are. And that's what I really want to be diving into today. So, with that, let's get going. Are you ready? I'm so

Michelle Khouri 4:10
ready. This is super cool. I mean, everything you've hooked up here today is super cool.

Emily Thompson 4:16
It's going to be a blast. Let's hope Let's hope it all continues to work.

Michelle Khouri 4:20
Amen to that.

Emily Thompson 4:21
Just I mean, the bar just maintains a pretty low, low stature, right and to keep it low. But yes, this is gonna be a ton of fun. So actually, before we even get started, I'd love for everyone in the chat. Feel free to go ahead and say, Hey, and I'd like to know where you guys are sitting. Right and what it is you're sipping. So sitting and sipping, Michelle, where are you at today? I suppose you are every day.

Michelle Khouri 4:47
Yeah, same place. I am every day Pinky. I'm in Atlanta, Georgia. I'm so glad you got that reference. And I'm sitting in my living room. So this is my living room. And I'm sipping water. Just trying to stay hydrated. You got to own who you are from a hydration level as well. You know

Emily Thompson 5:06
what I mean? You do do hydrate, hydrate, hydrate, right? I'm sitting in my home office here today also drinking some water. Yeah, but you know super cool glass. I love that glass. They're very beefy. Oh, I like they're like thick. Yeah, glass beefy. I love them. I love them. So thank you. Yeah. So drinking coffee like leaves. I love it.

Michelle Khouri 5:31
Drinking coffee all day is my favorite hobby. I'm Colombian though. So I'm like, you know, made off 40% coffee.

Emily Thompson 5:39
I love it. I love it. Okay, good. Thanks, guys so much for sharing. It's good. Hi, Kelly and Jenny. Wonderful and Jill. Awesome. Okay, let's get started. Let's get the questions going. I'd like to hear from you. Why is it important to share your story and I'd like to hear this through like the lens of being a Creative or a business owner or entrepreneur? Like, why is it important to share who you are and what it is that you're doing?

Michelle Khouri 6:08
Well, um, I think I'm going to go deeper than with this than a lot of people expect with this question. But it's really actually a fundamentally human thing to share our stories, and in fact, it fosters trust between us when we do share those stories, as many of us know, or many of us who know Scorpios No, just kidding. I kid I love you guys. Those who are more mysterious or who don't more readily share their stories, we tend to fill in the blanks with our own machinations. Right? And that can be a dangerous game. And so knowing your story, accepting and embracing your story, and then being more open with that story, and in the same way that Bernie brown talks about vulnerability so often, is I think key to connect In general, and really all any of us are doing fundamentally no matter what our product service or endeavor is, is connecting with other people. And so when you boil it down to a very human level when you're just like, fundamentally I'm a human being with a story to tell and in order to connect with this human being, I have to tell my story and also listen to theirs. I think that kind of shakes you out of the mechanics of well, this is marketing.

Emily Thompson 7:29
Do you know what I mean? Yeah, for sure. I can't and not Kelly. I'm Tara. Tara st I can't remember what it is that she said she was on the podcast on iTunes and basically saying this is the exact same thing whenever you and or maybe it was actually even Kathleen and Kathleen being Tara sister. It makes sense that I would totally get them mixed up. But one of them said something to the effect of once you're sharing your story, you stop selling like yeah, it's there's a little There's a little switch that happens where and especially for creatives, who usually struggle a lot with selling Mm hmm. Whenever you can reframe it just sharing your story what it is that you're doing, why it is that you're doing which is more important even than what it is that you're doing. You're not selling anymore. You're just sharing Yeah, that puts you in a place of feeling. feeling more in control of the conversation feeling more comfortable with the conversation, and you actually probably getting more out of the conversation than if you were trying to sell

Michelle Khouri 8:31
100% You know, I think once you once you put it like that, I'm selling every day like when you own a business, particularly a business that provides well I any business really, but my business provides a service I i by the by the traditional definition of sales and selling every single day. And yet, I'm not a salesperson. What I am doing is telling the frequency story or My story via frequency every single day. And to be clear, I think to be clear on your purpose makes it super easy to share that story. Because all of a sudden, it's not just like I'm selling this to make money. I'm selling this because I want to heal, enlighten and uplift the world through sound. And that has been my goal being in sound from day one. And so it's very easy because it's kind of like I'm preaching every day versus selling right I'm preaching the message that is the power of sound.

Emily Thompson 9:34
Hmm, I mean, that's another powerful sort of mindset switch making especially in something like your selling sound. Let's talk about how like abstract how right and

Michelle Khouri 9:46
then how tangible in like a very weird interaction between the two, right? It's like,

Emily Thompson 9:51
yeah, yeah. So you have to like, you have to find other ways to sell than just selling it and The most natural authentic way of doing that is to preach more to share the story behind it and what it is that it does for others. So

Michelle Khouri 10:09
yes, that's good. Yeah, exactly. Do you feel like you're selling constantly in your job? Because you actually have product and service?

Emily Thompson 10:20
Yeah. You know, I don't think I do so example of this. So we started doing crystal parties at Almanac every Friday we're doing a zoom sort of like exclusive and I'm air quoting here, exclusive private crystal parties or crystal sales, basically, where we're getting in there and we call them parties because they're a ton of fun. Like tons of people are doing IV sales of crystals where they're getting on and like it's very like, almost what is auction style? It's almost very, so cool. Yeah, kind of intense and there's no like bidding necessarily, but like you got to claim that thing and Very fast moving. It's like this whole thing that kind of drives me a little bit nuts. So we were like at Almanac, how can we do this differently that feels a little more authentic to us, and how it is that we want to show up and do this kind of work. And especially in the time of COVID, when I can't like, invite people and see all the crystals like how, what does this look like for us? And so we started doing these crystal parties where we're getting on zoom. And we're showing them very similarly to how everyone else is doing it on Instagram. But we're doing it in a very storytelling kind of way, or like very educational way. So we're talking about where the crystals came from. We're talking about how they've been used in the past, like we're being very educational and because like the whole team is in there. It's me and David is there and our employee, Mary is there like, we're having this conversation. We're laughing and there's like, we're all gasping because like the crystals come out or they sparkle just right. And we're like, do you see that? Like it really just turns into a thing and we're not selling anything. I mean, we are we've shown up we're showing anything but we're not vocal selling anything, we're sharing the stories of ourselves and our relationship and of the products that are being sold. We're not going like, Oh, this is so unique and rare. If you don't buy it now, you're never going to see it again. Like there's none of that. There's none of that we're just showing the thing. We're sharing a story and, and people buy them because sharing is selling if you're sharing something worth buying, you know,

Michelle Khouri 12:25
yeah, I mean, I think that's really well put and it actually brings an example to my mind that I, I get, we all get emails from people selling some kind of a service or a product and I get a lot of these all the time, especially like when you're a small business owner, people reach out and they're like, I could help you enhance your follower account or whatever. And I had this one guy reach out and he, it was very salesy, and he emails me at my frequency email, and then he adds me on LinkedIn and messages me there. That night, and then the next day he DM me on instagram through frequencies account, DM me through my personal account emails me again, emails me again the next day. And I finally responded to him and I was like, Hey, dude, you got a response from me, but it's not the response you were looking for. This is not the way to sell something, this is the way to get blocked, which you now are fun fact, I didn't actually block him. He then responded to me again and was like, sorry, I was emailing you so much. I just so much believe. And then he goes again and sells tries to sell again. So now he's actually blocked because thank God, he gave me the reminder to block him. That is sales versus story. That is, and it's also like, you're not sharing your story with someone by hunting them down. That's not an organic exchange of human storytelling, right? It is. That is clearly that you feel targeted. And I think we've all felt those situations when someone's trying to blatantly sell us something and we feel uncovered. Trouble immediately. That's I mean, our guts tell us our guts know how to suss out when somebody is not being authentic with their sharing. And I think that's also authenticity. It's one of our values at frequency. Because sound in particular thrives off of authenticity. And if you're not going to be authentic in your, on your podcast, in your audio property, whatever it is, people can suss it out immediately, because we are trained to do that on a physical level as human beings. So authenticity, knowing your story and then sharing through that place of of knowing, understanding and authenticity, and that requires then owning it right. So all of those those dots start to be connected. Hmm

Emily Thompson 14:47
100% Okay, let's talk about his owning piece because yeah, I do think that this is this is something that bosses struggle with to a point like everyone comes to us like this idea of like, oh, I'm a creative like, I probably should be a doctor. Or can I like to start my own business? Or like, Who's gonna buy this thing for me and like, but we're here because we know we're being called to do this work. Yeah, whatever it is, but we have a problem with that like owning it and being like, I am a creative, I am going to start this business, I am going to sell this crazy thing that no one's ever thought of before. So let's talk about that. That owning of it so you can share it. And maybe there's even like you mentioned like this, like they're all connected, maybe even goes from one to the other. Where do you see those connections being made between like sharing it like saying I'm doing this thing and actually owning it?

Michelle Khouri 15:40
Well, I don't think you know, I don't think fundamentally you can share it from a place of authenticity, unless you've done the work of owning it. And so, you know, I think I can give I can give you an example of my own in my own life to show you but, you know, we've talked about this extensively. Women are particularly It is particularly hard for us as women to own our power. And to what I preach from the rooftops is be as big as you are. And that is now we've incorporated that into the messaging for frequency because that's actually essentially what we're doing is encouraging people to be as big as they are and to allow themselves to take up the space in this world that they take up. And that was born of my own personal journey as this like large Amazonian woman with a giant personality and like a large projecting voice and big ass opinions and big ass ideas. And I was told from a very young age, especially in Colombian society, it's like, No, no, no, no, no, a lady is not heard from she has seen and she's petite and so you must shrink, you must shrink yourself. And I do feel like a lot of us whether we're women identifying or male, identifying Understand what that feels like to shrink yourself. And so the first step is stop it. Be as big as you are. You deserve to take up room in this world and your ideas deserve to take up room in this world. So step one, I have an idea. Stop calling yourself crazy for it step to own that idea. And believe in yourself the way that you fundamentally at your core believe that you can make that idea come to life in the broadest way. We are infinite beings on this planet infinite, we can make anything we want happen on this planet. Okay, cool. So now number one, I've allowed myself space. And I have told myself I deserve it. Number two, I have an idea. I'm going to stop bad mouthing it and I'm going to embrace it and say, what's the worst that can happen? Well, the worst that can happen is that I not pursue this idea and live in regret. Personally, that's my worst case scenario. Number three, I'm going to do it and I'm going to do it hard. I'm going to go after making this vision a reality. Put my whole heart and soul into it. By the time you get to a place where you are like, Okay, I'm going to do it and I'm going to go hard. Oh, you are owning it, you have gotten into your owning graduation phase. And now you can you're going to not be able to do anything but shout about it from the rooftops because you are so amped on yourself and you believe in yourself so much and you know that the worst thing that could possibly happen is in fact not that you fail but that you don't even do it that you live your whole life saying I would have done this If only I believed in myself. That is terrifying.

Emily Thompson 18:36
Hmm. You do preached quite

Michelle Khouri 18:38
nicely. I shall

Unknown Speaker 18:43
I love it.

Unknown Speaker 18:45
Any deck?

Michelle Khouri 18:46
Yes.

Emily Thompson 18:48
I love this. So okay, two things for you. One is that I love that your story. And this is the thing I really want to point out here is that you Your story really does shape what you end up doing like your actual physical you grew up being told to be small, be quiet, all these things. And here you are in your business telling people to go big. Let's use your voice to tell everyone exactly what it is that you're here to stand for. Mm hmm. Which is why I think owning your story like recognizing your story really helps you evolve into that more powerful version of who you are and what it is that you want to do and you can do it so much more effectively because you've overcome the thing that has brought you to where it is that you are. So high five on that. Yeah, but also I want everyone to see that everyone to see that and to I love to hear from you though how it is that you did that. Like how did you go for being the little girl being told that she like can't say anything you could only be seen not heard to being who you are now.

Michelle Khouri 19:56
Thank you for that question, Emily because you know, I was laying in bed not too Two nights ago, and I was replaying this other podcast I was on and that conversation and I kept saying, it's it. I kept saying, I was just born who I am. But I, but I skipped this whole chunk in the middle where I didn't know how to be the full expression of myself. So I was like, Man, that was such a missed opportunity to like, tell people that like I was born, only knowing how to be who I am, but like the people who told me to be smaller, succeeded for a long time, I was smaller, smaller, energetically, I was a smaller presence. I was containing myself constantly. You know, I was in a relationship with a lovely man who was not compatible with me at all, but it kept me feeling safe in my containment zone. Intuition, like here's the thing, the thing that I why I say that I only know how to be who I am is because even when I was so contained And so, so much such a small version of myself a shell of myself is how I really look back on it and see myself as there was always this voice shouting at me being like this isn't it This isn't it This isn't it This isn't it, you're going in the wrong direction this isn't it. And I did everything in my power to ignore it. I mean, everything in my power and I blamed myself, I said that I was self sabotaging my life. No, it was my intuition. It was my higher self shouting at me being like, Okay, great. You've done this whole part of your journey. You've learned this lesson. Now. It's time to like really be you. And so what I have done in my journey of the last 20 years has been to listen to that voice and back that I wasn't as awake as I am now. So I didn't quite know what I was doing. All I knew was that something was dissonant. It didn't feel right and Thus, I was going to make a decision that took me out of that situation and led me to something that maybe felt more. Right. And that meant that over those those 10 to 15 years in particular with my career, I was making decisions that everybody was like, What the hell are you doing with your life, Michelle, and I had to trust myself so much that everyone around me who was like, you might be making a huge mistake. I could look at them and be like, I just really don't think I am. I didn't know I could have been, but I did it anyway. And now after years of meditative and spiritual practice, I'm like, Oh, I was following my intuition. And that's why I think for us like you and me, Emily, we preach this and I'm like, y'all take our mistakes, and just know that your intuition is gold. Follow it. Yeah, and also I'm so sorry, but my laptop is dying. So I have to get my charger. Go get

Emily Thompson 23:05
your charger. You're good. My

Michelle Khouri 23:06
intuition is telling me that if I don't do this, my laptop will die. So hold

Emily Thompson 23:10
on, let your intuition that's a be not the same thing, not the same thing. Hey boss, have you heard the news? Being boss is hosting our second big virtual event and this one is bringing the magic. The guided by intuition gathering is a three day live event for bosses all across the globe to get together and connect with each other, as well as with your own inner wisdom so that you can take more aligned action within your business. Join me on October 8 through 10th for panels, workshops, Live podcast recordings and more. With me and a group of boss experts including my guest co host Kelly Knight who's the owner of modern mystic shop. Bridget Esslemont the founder of V Taro the internet's biggest Tara resource serving over five million Tarot lovers every year and Mecca woods, astrologer and author of astrology for happiness and success, and more. Basically, it's three days that will live up to your wildest boss whoo dreams with a focus on intuition and a heavy sprinkling of magic in business. Learn more and it's now your seat by going to being boss club slash gathering. Hope to see you there. Okay, I do want to touch on this intuition thing, because you were ignoring it for a long time. Yes. And then one day you started listening like what does your intuition feel like? Do you like, Is it something in your body? Is it something that's repeated in your head that like, What? What is it for you?

Michelle Khouri 24:49
Well, I have a very visceral, solar plexus feeling. So it's in my stomach. My stomach responds viscerally to energy, which, which really all of ours do, but I'm very connected to it. I also have celiac disease, which I think is an interesting connection in that my gut is overactive in such a way that it attacks itself if I gluten for instance, but my gut in a very physical way and in a in a figurative way is very strong and present. So I do listen to that. So it's physically uncomfortable and painful for me to be around people who are harboring any kind of like, negativity, trauma, things like that. And then the voices Yeah, like not the voices

Unknown Speaker 25:43
Yeah, all the voice.

Michelle Khouri 25:47
No, it's that you know, it's it's your, it's, it's, it's that it's that voice in your head that's like, not literally a voice but rather, just that itch. It's just that mental itch. That's like Or Yes, yes, yes. And after years of developing that through meditation and that's a very active word for it because you know, like meditation, just the mere act of allowing, I consider meditation sort of like parting the Red Seas of your, of your mind. And so it's not so much about for me my practice isn't so much about not thinking anything but rather parting the seeds of all of the like little frivolous racing thoughts, so that the stuff really in the back that's buried that really deserves the most attention has the space to come forward. And for me intuition, are those that that find their way forward, regardless of all the little thoughts.

Emily Thompson 26:49
Hmm, thank you for sharing that. And if anyone here if you have access to the clubhouse in there, we have the sessions from the making notes. wasn't what is it make time to shine our conference from April. And one of the I asked Michelle, this because one of the exercises in there we had a breakout session from Kelly Knight from modern mystic, right? Who did an exercise about sort of feeling in your body where your intuition manifests for you. And so if you are interested in that there's a nice little exercise in there that will help you connect with where in your body, you hear or fill your intuition. So that's great.

Michelle Khouri 27:30
That's powerful.

Emily Thompson 27:32
Yeah, it is and like and not something that knowing, feeling your intuition is not something that a lot of people are in touch with. But I do find that people who are who feel best about their business and that does not mean that these are the people who are most successful in business because I know lots of successful people in business who are so out of touch with their intuition is no joke, no joke, but the people who feel best in their business Are the people who are the most in touch with their intuition. They feel good about the moves that they're making, which actually brings up for me, you're talking about how it is that you sort of made your transition. For me whenever I was in college and I don't know where this started, I there's like, no point where I can recall like me having this thought for the first time or anything like that. But for me, what sort of helped me put me on that path was this thing that I literally repeat to myself all the time is I refuse to regret anything. Mm hmm. Right. And so it's just something that I think of, and it's not so much that I'm going to do dumb stuff and then refuse to regret it. It's like, it's both proactive and reactive. You know, so I'm also thinking very hard about decisions as to whether or not this is going to be something that I regret doing or not doing. Yeah. And then afterwards, let's say something does go horribly wrong or whatever, like I still refuse to regret it. Whatever it may be. So that's just something that came out and I like it's not like I had a weirdly, you know, traumatic childhood or like or anything, just the normal stuff. I think that, you know, a lot of people deal with also told as a kid that like seen not heard, like all those things for sure. But for me the way that the way I course corrected was this thing that I started repeating to myself if I refuse to regret anything,

Michelle Khouri 29:30
that's beautiful. And I also think that when you're aligned with your values, and you really are you really understand what your values are and who you are as a person and what you're here on this planet to do, or even. I mean, that's a big one right that a lot of people are like, I don't friggin know. I'm like, Well, yeah, I guess fundamentally does anybody but if you understand and feel a sense of purpose about something, these decisions become a lot easier to not regret. Because you are acting in accordance with your fundamental core, right? And then all of a sudden, even if things go wrong, you're like, Well, I know that I did what was best, according to my value systems and my morals and my ethics, and, you know, you could even see regret as like a karmic energy that returns to you if you're putting something out in the world that isn't quite aligned. Because that's a heavy feeling. And I just don't know. I mean, you know, even people I've trusted who I might put the word betrayed who have betrayed me in very recent times, like I can't regret trusting them because they did the absolute best thing for me, in terms of putting out the right ripples in the world. And also trying to place love into somebody who obviously wasn't ready to receive it, but that's on them, not me. You know, like, that's it. So I love that That that's your mantra or one of your mantras because it's a powerful indicator of something even deeper, which is alignment with self.

Emily Thompson 31:08
Yeah, I mean, it's definitely taken on layers and layers of meaning as I've grown up. Yeah, like this idea of what it really means to me why it is instilled in me and I will say even after saying that, like, I don't really know where it came from, but I also do I often joke and it's not a joke. But I often joke that my family's love language is guilt tripping. Right And so, right so And that, I think is where it really started coming up for me is this idea of like, I'm not gonna regret that.

Michelle Khouri 31:38
Yes. Wow, what a powerful rebellion for you like,

Emily Thompson 31:42
truly basically my middle name Emily powerful rebellion.

Unknown Speaker 31:47
Thompson Do you forget your

Emily Thompson 31:48
last name? No, I just needed a dramatic pause.

Michelle Khouri 31:55
I was like stop saying, No, no,

Unknown Speaker 31:57
it was needed. It needed space.

Michelle Khouri 32:03
Oh my god. Also I want to touch back on something you said because I'm, I'm preaching a lot about capitalism right now. And, man, I swear I'm not preachy. Okay? I just preach a lot.

Unknown Speaker 32:17
Yes, I

Michelle Khouri 32:18
can see I'm a boss, you know what I mean? Like, but I am an anti capitalism capitalist. And yeah, basically, there's something you said, which is that there's a lot of people who don't, who aren't aligned with themselves and their values, who are doing just fine. They're doing just fine over under the old capitalistic systems that reward, profit over all else. We are hopefully and I really feel this moving into a very new era for humanity and for our society. And I think we are moving into the next economy, as it's literally called good It's really fascinating. And it the next economy is built with companies that value humankind over all else. I'm talking about like humans over profit. And that's how I run my business is like, I spend most of my time making sure my people feel cared for making sure my people have everything that they need in this world. And then what I believe is from that comes profit and not the other way around. So you know, that's the old systems and the old systems also rewarded sociopaths and narcissists and people who just didn't care. It rewarded individualism above empathy, the new way as we enter this, very violently enter, Age of Aquarius,

Emily Thompson 33:50
kicking and screaming.

Michelle Khouri 33:53
Like when we were wearing flower grounds, this is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius. I was like crowns. There's Corona crowns, not flower crowns. Right? Oh, listen, New Age hippies look like this.

Emily Thompson 34:15
Yeah, right there sitting at home you do Do you have PJ pants on down here? Oh,

Michelle Khouri 34:19
I actually have jeans on for you guys. For you guys jeans.

Emily Thompson 34:26
Nice. No pants, real pants or hard pants. It's hard to write a term we've we've coined around here hard pants. Um, no, I think and I even want to talk about like how this works because even you saying it is like Oh, is it like, huh? But let's all think about this right now. Because what we're all doing is we're all sitting at home. I'm spending less money than we usually do because we can't go out and you know have margaritas may they rest in peace

Michelle Khouri 34:55
Speak for yourself. I'm where things are open.

Emily Thompson 35:00
Through that through that but um you are being so much more thoughtful about where you're spending your money right you're thinking you know instead of instead of buying this like freezer Margarita mix from the Walgreens like let me go down to my like local Mexican restaurant and get a jug of like real Margarita you guys not doing that

Michelle Khouri 35:24
oh why have I not done this yet? You're saying this and I'm like wait, wait wait I'm drinking gin and juice like I know no

Emily Thompson 35:34
then let me tell you about this and then we'll get back to the actual thing. cinco demayo is and David was like what? Two months into quarantine at that point I was like I don't care what cootie you get? Go get me some margaritas and some cheese Deb like again guys. I was joking a minute ago like basic, so basic, it's fine. And so he went and he was like having a margarita Do you want and I was like two I want you can have Margarita I can have Margarita as like if you can only get one that's fine we'll share it but get to because who knows like you can you can drive with booze that's the thing. I mean can you get so we came back and I was sitting right where I'm sitting now sitting here working and he came in as like the only let me get one. I was like, Are you kidding me? Two months into quarantine. I thought that you know, the world was over. I can only get one Margarita and he walked out there and he holds it up and it's a gallon milk jug

Michelle Khouri 36:30
is the best day of my life. Listen, if Latinos don't know how to do anything else, we know how to turn up and turn up in style. Okay.

Emily Thompson 36:39
Yeah,

Michelle Khouri 36:40
yes, I may not survive the acop apocalypse past a few days. But cscf though. I may not survive the apocalypse past a few days, but those will be the most fun days of my life.

Unknown Speaker 36:53
I'm a pencil burn the whole

Michelle Khouri 36:55
Yeah, y'all are gonna be fighting for your life. I'm gonna be like Let the zombies eat me. They're gonna get drunk.

Emily Thompson 37:04
You're gonna be gathering up everyone's job.

Michelle Khouri 37:08
I'm gonna recycle them guys. Oh, man.

Emily Thompson 37:13
Okay, well, there was like a real story here. So okay, actually though, we were very particular about even the Mexican restaurant that we went to go get our Margarita and she's debt free. You know, there's like one family that runs a one mark and it's like the furthest one away. That's it, but that's the one that we went to. Yeah, right. Yeah. And like, and I know, I'm not the only person doing, like, we're all being so much more thoughtful about where we're putting our money that what is going to happen is that the ones of us who are left behind are the ones of us who are serving people in a way that feels like they want to return the favor. You know, like even when times are hard, even when they're making like they're only buying one thing this month or whatever it may be. They're going to think about those people who are real, who are authentic, who are sharing a story where like a real story works. Sharing like, what is the story of Walmart? And can we all relate to it?

Michelle Khouri 38:05
No. And listen. That's why business values like businesses and the values they've put out historically have seemed like such a load of BS is because it's not authentic. Now our values for frequency when we set them, they're part of our story and every value right now, I'm actually redoing our values I'm looking at like, where are we now after just over a year and a half of like, pretty substantial growth for us, actually, in a few days from when we've recorded this, so Okay, let me restate that. Actually, a month and a half ago was two years since I registered the business. So July 23, is when I registered the business in 2018. And we started business a few months after that. So we're like verging on our two year anniversary. And a lot has happened in that time. And so we as a team are constant really talking about our values constantly just organically like, Oh, you know, this is why clarity This is why alignment like just everybody on the team. And they're so living and breathing for us as if, as a unit we that's what a corporation is a group of people whose energy combines to create this very special other energy. A corporation is not a person. It's not a tangible anything it is the energy created by the hard work, desire and purpose, ideally, of a group of people working toward the same mission or purpose. And so, you know, that said, looking at our values and being like, Okay, well, how has our story evolved? Let's take a step back. Let's see what the story has evolved. Let's see what that new story is. And allow it space to actually live and breathe and then translate that into new values as needed. But it's it's also like as you're at as you're building a business Whether it's a solopreneur ship or a retail short store, or an e commerce or you know service offering a service based business like mine, you got to keep your finger on the pulse of the story because once you build this thing based on your own story it takes on its own life. And there is this interesting collaboration between you and the business. And it's sort of like on you to guide that business but also on you to listen as that business takes on its own story and life. And if you don't like where that story is going, change the direction. You have that power and that control.

Emily Thompson 40:42
Absolutely. So what have you you were saying where are you at in the redefine like you're writing the story? You haven't defined the values yet? Correct?

Michelle Khouri 40:52
I have not. And I know that the gala who is my amazing PR and communications director has been pressing me to do this. And we're in the middle of first of all of a rebrand. So, by the time this episode is out, y'all can go to frequency dot media, you can see the rebrand. And it has been a total exercise in story. And it has really pushed me. It's been uncomfortable in a lot of ways, because I'm like, Oh, my god, there's so now we're a bigger team. And so everybody's asking me questions all the time, like we but who are we targeting? And who are we speaking to? And what are we saying about it? And how do we say it and who does it? And it's such a heavy mental exercise to take on in the midst of a mentally taxing and exhausting time and yet, there is no better time to engage in this exercise. Because we don't know where we're all going. So the best thing you can do is know exactly who you are, is know exactly what your story is because that way you can respond to complete uncertainty in a state of absolute confidence that the way that you're responding agilely you know, flowing with whatever comes is aligned with who you know yourself to be or what you know your business to be.

Emily Thompson 42:10
Yeah, and it's something that you'll never regret. Ah ha,

Michelle Khouri 42:13
yeah, no, but truly,

Emily Thompson 42:16
right. So I so because you haven't done your values Yeah, I have. I have it. I wonder, I wonder if they'll actually change. And I wonder if instead the way you define them will change.

Michelle Khouri 42:30
100% Why do you say that? Right.

Emily Thompson 42:34
Um, it's something that I've been thinking about a lot lately. It actually is like a little nugget that came up for me. Earlier this month as of recording this early in July. I did a CEO day live. We did our CEO day kit. We did a live I did it free for anyone who wanted to join it was a ton of fun. And one of the things that came up during that it's like, kind of a story. The story is Catalina and I wrote in our book that we thought that your values were something that You were born with and that they never changed. Like, there's just like, it's like a part of your character that is so ingrained in you that it just is what it is. And then this past summer or no last summer back when we could travel, say a little bit of anger. This day, I was sitting in Greece on this trip and this woman next to me, we're talking she's a life coach, right? I know, everyone just gets like, sad face. Remember those days, we could go to the beach? Right? So she was an older woman, a life coach, we had been having conversations for days, she was totally delightful as she's talking to me about about values as she tells me that, you know, she helps coach people through, you know, their values changing was like,

Unknown Speaker 43:43
What

Emily Thompson 43:44
Wow, values change. And I thought like, okay, because this woman is 2030 years older than me, perhaps. Maybe she just knows more than I do. So I really started like shifting my own idea about what values are even though like I've read it, I wrote it in a book, published, lots and lots of has many copies in print. So I started feeling really weird about it. And then we actually had something come through our inbox a couple of months ago. And as someone who asked the question, if you would change anything in the being boss buck, what would it be? Wow. And so I answered the question on one of our 10 minutes to being boss episodes where I said, I think I would change my stance on values, maybe they are something that you can actually actually change as you get older. And it like, but I'll tell you, that's never sat well with me, like my intuition has never like actually accepted that definition. And I'm also talking here, but there is a difference between personal values and business values. Business values can change all day every day. I mean, look at Walmart. Right. So but during our CEO Jay Keller, CEO day Live. One of the things that came up for me as I was talking in front of hundreds of people, I just like had this like moment of clarity around values, where I don't think it is your values that change, I think the way you define them simply changes in every phase of your life. And I think what we're all experiencing right now is a change in values like every or change in definition of values, we're all having to define those core characteristics in a completely different way. And I think it has, even if we can, like, bring it home a little bit, it's shifted the way we're sharing our stories, it's shifted our like confidence in our ability

Unknown Speaker 45:34
to

Emily Thompson 45:35
share our stories, because we're a little now misaligned with the things that we've always identified with because the definitions of those those identities is now even maybe just a hair different and in some ways, a lot different. That has us all feeling a little weird about showing up and selling what it is that we're doing. Right and share it like owning who we Now and what our opinions are in or what they have been and that they need to change. Yeah. Right. So this long story Oh,

Michelle Khouri 46:10
fascinating. Yeah.

Emily Thompson 46:13
I think I think maybe I would love to, for you to follow up with me as you are looking at your values, do they actually change? Or do you simply redefine?

Michelle Khouri 46:22
Well, you know, I think that those might be one in the same and I guess it depends on how vastly you redefine them. Because I think it's a great example that was fascinating. Oh, my God, Emily, that's because I'm in the middle of this exercise. So I've already been reevaluating them. I've been looking at each of our six values and being like, Okay, I'm not going to have like, we're not going to have like a list of 15 values. That's, that's ridiculous. Like, we really need to think about, like, if there are six or less things that we stand for, what are they? And, you know, we care tremendously about all six values that we currently have. I'll tell you What there really are two that I've looked at that I'm like, Well, those are truly an embodiment of our team. And one of them is authenticity. And it just keeps coming up. And to me that's a crux of the movement to or mission to heal and lighten or uplift through sound. And the second is playfulness slash passion, something along those lines because we really play so much we have so much fun doing what we do, but I don't know if that's like this, like fundamental thing, you know, like, Whoa, we have so much fun, trust us see its value. You know. But I do think that in redefining significantly, let's say, formally somebody, somebody's white, one of their values, white American, one of their values is community, but the way that they define community is Their tight knit white community white dominated community. And they want to make sure that they protect their community at all costs. And when somebody during this nationwide reckoning with weight race that we're having Finally, in what feels like a critical mass moment tells them Well, part of your community is also just like humanity. Don't you think that like there is a human community? And what about the black people in your community? And what about the black people that you consider not a part of your community because they're on the other side of your neighborhood or gate or whatever. I have seen people starting to completely switch what they consider to be community or family or whatever it is. To me that's a fundamental shift in values. That's a shift away from subconsciously racist values and and a racist framing of values. Or a selfish one, you know, if you don't want to use such a harsh term, which I think we all need to, like confront. So I think as a nation we are in a moment of shifting values and the redefining of those values. innately means that they're completely different values, even if you're putting even if diversity is the same word. The way you redefine that in this current age versus 40 years ago, it's a totally different value system. Yeah, so I think it's both I think it's both Yeah, I'm also like, Listen, I was born. Like I was born with a certain set of values personally, that I continue to hold today without choosing it, like injustice, gives me an actually, I mean this for real this year, or this week, gives me hives. And I literally two days ago started breaking out in hives because I got this like Ba ba ba, ba ba all these Little situations that felt so unjust. And I'm a person who doesn't handle injustice. Well, it makes me so angry that I can't do anything about it. And it's injustice on a broad scale. It's injustice on a small scale with like ridiculous policies and our government. It's all sorts of stuff, you know?

Emily Thompson 50:20
Yeah. I just had a thought what if the purpose of life okay, I'm here is to find the truest definition of your values.

Michelle Khouri 50:35
Hmm,

Emily Thompson 50:36
wow. Like the like the truest and most complete definition of your values as someone who does value community like the purpose of their life is to actually fully embrace the truest and most complete definition of community. I am super down for that same suit. are down for that so I'm gonna have to journal about

Michelle Khouri 51:02
yeah because night like for real let me sink into that I need to process that for a few days weeks that's a really interesting thought and I and there is something you know to bring this back to owning your story I think that there is a really I love the exercise Kelly and your exercise of like understanding where intuition how intuition feels in the body, but then also really thinking about your whole life as an individual and being like, what are the things that What are those? Oh, god, I'm trying to say an American saying right now.

Emily Thompson 51:39
Okay, always say hippies,

Unknown Speaker 51:41
spine.

Michelle Khouri 51:43
What are the hills I tend to always die on is that I always sound aggressive.

Unknown Speaker 51:50
Sure, yes,

Emily Thompson 51:51
that's right.

Michelle Khouri 51:53
You know those things that you just always You can't let go of that really, really? A Hill Do you want to die on? Yes, thank you so much. Oh, I'm so glad to have people who can sweet.

Emily Thompson 52:05
Jill is actually always really great at filling in my blanks. She's like my Oh, it's great. Thank you, Jill

Michelle Khouri 52:10
bless. Bless. Okay, so what are those things those values, like maybe Jill's value is to rescue people when they are in need of help in a moment, right? Maybe one of Jill's things is like she cannot see somebody struggling and not try to help them out of that situation. Right. I believe it. And you know, and so I think that knowing that about yourself also helps you to tell your story because those that helps to connect the dots between Why are you even doing what you're doing? You know, there's got to be a part of you that's like, I mean, look at look at me, I mean, injustice is one of those things, love and trying the constant relationship with expressing love but also needing love expressed back to me, all of those things tie into my business like they do this mission to heal enlighten and uplift, heal enlighten uplift in justice, love. Yeah. You know the second all this happened I was like, You know what, I'm not going to be a Trojan horse anymore. That's not my value my value is to be as big as I am. So I came out blatantly against white supremacy against racism like shouted it from the rooftops and then also am like blatantly an anti capitalist now rather than being what I used to call myself which was already the Trojan horse of patriarchal capitalism. Like No, no more Trojan horse. I don't like knock on the door gently anymore. I kick it down.

Emily Thompson 53:43
Yeah, right, living more authentically owning who you are, like showing up in embracing your values to the fullest extent that you possibly can

Michelle Khouri 53:55
be as big as you are.

Emily Thompson 53:56
Yeah. Um, and so this like purpose of life. I also think this rolls into like the purpose of your business. Right? Is it not also to uphold to like, find the truest complete, and I would even say universal definition of your values and embody them 100% all of the time. Right? That is what to do for power. And yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. I mean, I don't I'm universals and interesting word for me, because I think that,

Michelle Khouri 54:31
oh, there's so much gray area. And also, you know, in quantum physics, there's this theory that like, everything that ever will happen ever has happened and is happening now is all happening at the same exact time. And, you know, that is like, what, what do you mean, and I will tell you, during COVID is the first time that I'm like getting an inkling with my tiny human brain of what that could possibly mean because everything does feel like it's all happening at the same time and it feels like this is the worst best, most horrible loneliest most fulfilled most loved most joyous, most opportune, like most opportunity, least opportunity, scariest and terrible and bla bla bla bla bla, time, all at once. And so universals are hard word for

Emily Thompson 55:28
we just take that one off the

Michelle Khouri 55:29
docket a little too big. It's like when a Virgo is having a meltdown and existential meltdown. Is there even any definition to anything?

Emily Thompson 55:41
I love it. We're also I did not know that we were gonna come in here talking about the meaning of life and quantum physics today. But but that's just what we do. Sometimes. That's just what happens. Well, that's your purpose. Maybe, maybe, to make you understand the word universal.

Michelle Khouri 56:00
She said universal is like Well, according to quantum physics.

Emily Thompson 56:05
Oh man, I appreciate you I appreciate you uh, done perfect. I do want to start wrapping this up we're at this time just went so fast quantum physics

Michelle Khouri 56:15
so fast. It's not even real

Unknown Speaker 56:16
right? It's all happening the same time.

Michelle Khouri 56:19
Nothing in everything exists

Emily Thompson 56:22
anywho I have not seen any, any questions pop up here. So let's go ahead and start wrapping this up. Um, I would like to know Do you have any tools or tactics or tips or like maybe like a good journaling prompt that anyone who may be struggling with identifying themselves or owning who they are can use to start I don't know digging in.

Michelle Khouri 56:48
I do so like, before I started frequency I had creative powerhouse which was a marketing agency. And we did that a lot for our clients was actually fine. And cooling their story so that we could then write it into a bio, write it into white paper, write it into web copy. And one of my favorite exercises is a journaling exercise. And it's it's very much dependent on your stream of consciousness, your ability to allow yourself that stream of consciousness. And it is basically you just want to write a list of three lists. The first list is everything that you are really, really good at, like very skilled at the second list is everything that makes you super happy, like very joyous. Think of like Marie Kondo for your soul, all that and then third list is every every way that you have made money and know that you can make money. And when you Venn diagram those and sort of start connecting the dots between them is when you start realizing what your purpose is and what you or what you should be doing. For your purpose. You can always Do this for your story, right is like write down some of the key milestones that have happened for you personally in your life, good, bad, ugly, great. Do that for your career. And then you can do it as a business owner or some other category that you set for yourself, you know, cuz I have all three of those, right? I have a career, but I also have my time and life as a business owner and CEO, which is very different from a corporate career, and then my personal life. And what you're able to do is spot themes, you're able to start connecting, like you can draw literal lines. If you're doing three columns next to each other, you can draw literal lines for different things that connect to one another. So an example of that might be for me, like, when I was younger, when I was a child, I was in theater and I was in musical theater and I was a singer. And that line would connect to the middle column where in my career My first job was at Interscope Records with a&r. So all of a sudden that line connects from singing and musical theater to the music industry. And then all of a sudden, that line would connect to the fact that I have a podcast production company or if I was trying to get to a frequency, it would connect to the fact that I have a podcast. And all of a sudden, I'm starting to make these connections that I'm like, oh, wait a minute. Sound has been a part of my life intensely since I was born basically. Right. So

Emily Thompson 59:33
that's my advice for an exercise that is a powerful exercise. It sounds like me, I'm gonna do it. Can I do it? Just not for you. Not for you, of course be as big as you are. Thank you so much, where can people find more about you?

Michelle Khouri 59:52
So me and everything about me is frequency. So you can look up frequency which is F r, q ends See why it's the millennial spelling novellas for us thing. FRQ nc y dot media and then we're frequency media on Insta. And then you can also just request to follow me on Insta to I'm posting on instant Facebook a good bit. So you can find me through my name nice and say hello.

Emily Thompson 1:00:18
Yes. And you can find all of those links in our show notes. And finally, finally, what makes you feel most boss

Michelle Khouri 1:00:29
thought about this question too. And any given day, it's different. What makes me feel most boss is being able to find joy in every single day. Yeah, that's incredibly important to me. None of it. No, Matt No, no matter of revenue, no amount of profit is is worth it. Or means anything if I'm not feeling joy in it so yeah that to me feeling joy with my team makes me feel successful as a leader. Seeing my team feel joy within themselves make makes me feel successful seeing the joy coming from my clients when they have a podcast they never thought in a million years they could have makes me feel really successful. And and lighting up when I talk about frequency and cultured my podcast makes me feel really successful.

Emily Thompson 1:01:29
Hmm, thank you for sharing all of that. And thank you for coming to hang out with us. I had a blast talking about all of this with you.

Michelle Khouri 1:01:38
As always, this has been awesome. Thank you

Emily Thompson 1:01:40
so much for having me. Of course, of course. So everyone who's here. podcast done. Right. Thank you guys, y'all for coming to hang out with us. I'll see you guys around the community. I'm Michelle. This has been fab. Always so good to analysis connected my love Yeah. Soon, all the time.

Michelle Khouri 1:02:03
You can't escape.

Emily Thompson 1:02:05
Through that through that. And guys, we actually do have some fun stuff coming up with Michelle, I'm not going to share with you now I'm gonna like trickle out some details as we go. But this is not the last you'll hear from Michelle. Ooh, did you love this episode as much as I did. Imagine sitting in on conversations like this live either every Monday with your fellow bosses or you can talk about what's coming up for you in your business, or in a monthly clubhouse conversation where I go live with a boss to have a real conversation about doing business as a creative, just like this conversation with Michelle attended by a group of business owners like you and the being boss community, you can decide how involved you want to be from just connecting with others in the baseline community to having access to extra content, like this live recording, and more and clubhouse. Learn more and join in on the fun at being boss club slash community. And until next time do the work. Be boss.

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