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Perfectly Imperfect | How to Embrace Becoming Flawsome
Ep 35

Iva 1:23

We are so honored we had the opportunity to have Kristina Mand-Lakhiani as our featured guest in in this episode that is all to do with two topics that are close to our hearts.


If you’ve been in our world for some time, you know that this podcast started as a conversation between moms to build community and help us navigate the demands of modern life while sharing our gifts and talents with the world AND staying true to ourselves. 


The themes of self-love and ditching perfectionism are part of those important conversations that need to be heard and that we need to have in many ways, on a regular basis, and which we are highlighting today through our conversation with Kristina.


Plus, she has a new book out that is being described as “10 years worth of therapy in one book,” called Becoming Flawesome.  And we can’t wait to dive right in!


Desiree 2:40

Kristina Mand-Lakhiani is an international speaker, entrepreneur, artist, philanthropist, and mother of 2 kids. She is the co-founder of Mindvalley, a leading publisher in the personal growth industry. 


It started as a small meditation business operating out of an apartment in New York, the company quickly grew into a global educational organization offering top training for peak human performance to hundreds of thousands of students all around the world. 


Kristina believes life is too important to be taken seriously and makes sure to bring fun into every one of her roles: as a teacher, mother, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and world traveller. Kristina helps her students to virtually hack happiness by taking them through her unique frameworks. We are so excited to share the meaningful conversation we had with her. 


Iva 5:02

So, Kristina it's such an honor and such a pleasure to have you in our podcast and one of the premises that we share with our Mom Bosses Abroad audience is that you can do it all, you can enjoy it all not necessarily in the same day but within the same season of life while having fun along the way. And that is why we resonate so much with you, and how you share your belief that life is too important to be taken seriously. So you make sure to bring fun into every one of your roles and we love that and so we would like you to share with us: how do you bring fun into your work and your role as a mom?


Kristina 6:08

That's that's such a complicated question. In a way, you know I'm really bad at making jokes by the way it's one of the things which I can't help doing. It's a compulsive joke teller, but I'm also really bad at that. But I have to I have to be very fair to one wonderful human being who came up with that saying that “Life is too important to be taken seriously.” It's actually by Oscar Wilde. So was this wise. It's, he's the guy who said that “Well, in my case, it's I guess it's just the desire to always stay true to who you are.” And I guess I just wouldn't be alive if it wasn't a little bit fun. So a more for example, I am having this is Monday, we are recording it and I'm having- I'm going to have a very intense two weeks ahead of me and as I was on Sunday night I was getting into this. I started feeling about a little anxious because sometimes we feel anxious just because things are the alternatives work and somehow work and they don't associate with but then sometimes you don't just sometimes feel okay, let me just wing it. Enjoy. 

And sometimes, you know, it's good to play rather than work and on a more serious note, I know that a lot of professional singers or performers they have the stage fright despite having performed in front of stadium,s filled stadiums. And I'd heard of course I haven't researched them but I've heard that quite a lot of very famous, famous entertainers, they are not themselves on stage. They're a persona they like to play because that takes away the stress. You kind of you go on stage and if it's not me, I can do whatever I like. So sometimes it's a coping mechanisms, you know, you can't, you can't take the stress because everything is so important and you have to be so responsible, that you just breathe out and you don't progress. And that's probably one of the recent examples of how fun comes into play. But on a more day-to-day basis, I just if I catch myself, that I'm dreading something because it's become too mundane and too I don't like to say the word boring but more important than that's the time to spice it up and to ask yourself, how can you make it fun? Fun is so much more important in the future with credit.


Desiree 9:09

No, absolutely. And it's one of the things that Iva and I have always said going into this venture together to say “You know what? We're only doing this while we're having fun. The moment we don't have fun doing this anymore, either at all or together, that's when we stop doing it.” So it's always been such an important element for us. And another really important element is that once we became moms, we still don't realize that it is so difficult to have a balance in your life. I mean, it's almost impossible, right with little ones around you. So we would rather like to say that we like to strive for harmony because things will never be totally in balance anymore. Yet it is a mindset shift that we have and that we say, Hey, we're in harmony. Maybe I didn't get this done. And I didn't get that. But I had had this moment and that is so much more important. So we would also like to ask you like how you do so many things. You're a mom of two. You're a very successful entrepreneur and how do you keep your life in harmony?


Kristina 10:23

So I have to I have to give a disclaimer my two little ones are not so little anymore.


Iva 10:30

But as they say, little little children little problems, bigger, bigger problems. So it's really how to tackle that stage right a little bit.


Kristina 10:43

Well, it's the problems become a little different nature of course, but I would I would rephrase that little, little children, little helpers, big children, big helpers, and I'm leading up, leading it to the idea that I actually cannot credit it to anyone I don't know where I heard that but I've heard that lazy mothers have really very diligent children. So you know, I let my kids do everything that they are physically and mentally and in all other ways capable of doing and they just don't waste time on certain things which we can we can split the tasks after that I'm actually single mother. I do have helpers in the house. I mean, I have my parents who helped me, I have I have other people who help but I am well, I am a single mother. I mean with the father we don't live together. But yeah, but you know, here the important thing is to let go of your perfectionism. And that's the scary thing. Of course there are other ways of doing things there is the way where you do everything perfectly everything and perfectionism it's not just about how you perform a task- perfectionists want to do everything. They're not very good at delegating, because the moment you delegate it it’s not going to be perfect. And that's the struggle, so you have to give up your perfectionism. For example, if you want to delegate cooking to your kids you have to be okay with the fact that it's going to be done imperfectly and the kitchen is not going to be in perfect condition afterwards. So if you really want to put more stuff in your life, you have to you have to let go somewhere,  you can't be too strict about the rules how everything has to happen. Now with that said, prioritization is also important. Not everything needs to be done. Not everything needs to be dealt with and sometimes we compartmentalize too much. For example, a good mother and I'm not using good in the actual sense of this word. But what we perceive as a good mother or what society thinks of a good mother is the mother who takes care of the house. Everything is good there. She takes care of herself, hopefully sometimes, and she takes care of everyone in the family. So for example, a good mother should clean cook feed, but then also find time to entertain the child. Now, it never happened like this until recently. We get we got all the comforts of contemporary civilization where you have you know, machinery whether housework or you can order food if you if you don't have time, but in the old days, that was part of doing the things that you were supposed to. So if you need to cook for your children, engaging them in the process might be both somehow, of course, very small. It's probably more distraction than help. But it is also the quality time that you spend with your children. Again, as I said, my children are quite grown up right now. So I don't remember quite as vividly the pain of not having a time for a shower.


Desiree 14:09

Oh, the pain is real.


Kristina 14:13

But then again, I can't imagine how many wonderful things you can do while you're singing because you haven't had a shower.


Desireen 14:20

Yeah, it's true. Yeah, it's true.


Iva 14:24

Yes. And Kristina, we love how you how you delve right into this topic of perfectionism. Because it is one of the themes in your upcoming book Becoming Flawsome. This whole notion about we need to have this honesty about ourselves, and to be authentic as well. And yet, we are as a society, we seem to move into this direction where things are not the way they seem right. There's a lot of filters that are used, there's a lot of the things that are put in social media in a bigger platform to show or to convey a certain type of idea that is not necessarily what it seems. And so we would like to know a little bit more is, your book Becoming Flawsome, first of all, ‘flawsome’ is an amazing word and we love it will like to share with us how did it come about this, this ‘flawsome’ idea because it's so powerful. It goes right to that to that premise and to that point of, ‘Oh my God, there's this value into being my authentic self and really boycotting this need for perfectionism even though most of society is moving into that direction.”


Kristina 15:45

You know, there are so many things I would like to say to your question, first of all, it's not just contemporary society that has created the illusion and our life we've actually if you know how our brain works, we've always lived in an illusion. I mean, that's just the function of the brain. It creates illusions and it feeds your own illusions. So no matter what kind of paradigm you take, it is an illusion. Now, when it comes to perfectionism, I hear again, I'd like to say that, you know, it's so tempting to say the society expects me to be perfect because if you go on Instagram, they're all those beautiful young moms who are not just perfect cooks, like chefs, and their children are constantly bright and smiling and so cute. And so adorable. And then they also look like supermodels. Yes, there are people like that. But it is not them who make you feel that you have to be perfect. Not at all. It is whether we like it or not, but perfectionism is the cross that we take upon ourselves. Nobody pushes it on us. Nobody accepts us expects us to be perfect. We just like to see that because it's so much interesting. Oh, society wants me to be perfect- bulls&^t, contemporary society doesn't want anything from you to be honest. Moreover, forget your children, they don't care. I'm I mean, I'm 45 I used to be very different and sometimes when I get into my victim mode my daughter she looks at me she's not understands she sees everything, all those facades and beauty and she's like, “Mom,” every time I go, you know, I go to put my makeup on before interviews and I tell her I'll go and make myself beautiful and she's like, “No, you're beautiful.” And it is so sobering. It is so sobering because them they don't see me the way I see myself in the mirror. You know? Research says that 80% of women don't like what they see in the mirror and has nothing to do with how they really look. Now to drive this point to the very, very painful depth: my mom used to work in an orphanage in Astoria, and in Western societies, usually people or children who end up in orphanages they come from very complicated families. So most of my mom's wards were born to people who, who were the drug addicts or alcoholics or even worse she's had kids because that killed their mom and ended up in in jail. And my mom used to say she was always so shocked she used to say and it really it really woke me up to the reality of how much bulls%^it we put on our loved ones. So my mom said, “You know what really puzzles me? These kids have some of the most complicated parents really tough kind of parents. But no matter what they love them, and all they want is for the parents to be with them and just to love them back.” These parents, if kids don't care how messed up their parents are, they love them. And our loved ones, our parents, our children, our siblings, and I believe even our partners actually. But I think that people really love you. They don't want you to be perfect. It's just not the point.


Desiree 19:11

Yeah, yeah. At the end of each season that we do for our episode, we usually bring our kids into the episode and we interview them and when they're still little, they're like ranging between like one and seven now, but I really love talking to them because we ask them questions and the answers we get in return. They're so humbling. And then so like, see mama, that it's enough what we do is so enough, we give them everything we need. We need to stop being so hard on ourselves. We make them so happy and the things they tell us because it really puts tears in our eyes and we have it on the episodes and it's just a beautiful reminder for ourselves. You're so right about that. 


Iva 20:01

Yeah. And Kristina, can you tell us also as well and share with us what can we or what were the lessons that you learned while writing Becoming Flawsome like as you were writing, I'm sure like you started off with powerful premises but along the way right, I'm sure there's always an element of discovery in that artistic journey of writing a book and knowing that it's going to reach so many people and impact so many lives. And, but there's things that are left out to write for many reasons, and maybe there's a few nuggets of wisdom or certain things that you learned along the way, by writing Becoming Flawsome and maybe you would like to share with us.


Kristina 20:48

The journey of writing becomes awesome, and then later, editing and publishing. It has been of course full of direct it's not like there was one lesson and one of the biggest lessons was probably the balance between sticking to your, you know, to your own values and to being true to you and following their convention of holding what society expects you to do in order to succeed and we can't close our eyes to certain demands of society. Sometimes you have to learn to speak the language to be heard. For example, my book is about self-love. But people don't buy it yet. I mean, the self-love the concept of self-love, they don't buy it. It's not a sexy topic. So I have to learn to explain the pain through things which are much more understandable. And this is this one, one moment where you have to balance between what makes you you and what society expects you to, you know, the way society expects you to interact with that. But you know, as we're talking I suddenly remembered, I do I do remember the pains of being the mother who didn't have time for the shower, I remember and I really felt like I want to share it because your audiences is young mothers who are starting their own probably business right or whatever that is. And very often we position but that's not the case. That's actually the opposite. So when I think the best job for a young mother is to be your own boss. I remember when, when my little one was small like eight, I got to take them on business trips. My daughter, I actually changed one of the rooms in our office for my daughter to be, you know, a nursery so she slept because I was breastfeeding both of my kids until, until quite an age of 14 months. And that required me being close to them. So it's perfect. It's actually perfect because you see you get to make your own rules who said that? You can't bring a child on a on a business trip. I remember my first speech on it. It was a massive event of Mindvalley on marketing and business and in us I don't know for me it was a big event like 500 People like one of the frontal like one of the coolest events for us at that time. I brought my daughter with me and of course I had a nanny as well to help me I mean someone to take care of her. But I remember, I went on stage and I said I'm sorry, I'm sleep deprived because I still breastfeed my child. She was like full time. Nobody cares. If you come and say that this is the norm. To even bat an eye they'll say this is the norm. And, and it's the job because first of all you can create your job around your lifestyle and second you should. So I remember when my son was younger, he was still a toddler. We went on a trip, a mastermind trip on Richard Branson's island with like a whole lot of entrepreneurs and he was there and I remember having a dinner and I of course there was Richard Branson. I was chatting to him and I was like, and then I suddenly look and I realized that my child is asleep somewhere between the guests under the table with some pillows in this moment. I mean, shame on you. Being weird as I am, of course I averted and I'm like, ‘Oh my God, I feel such a horrible mom.’ And Branson said to that like,’ Oh, don't worry when my kids were small. I took them along to all the meetings. We'd have a meeting at the table and they like playing under the table. You see Branson brought his kids along. It's the best thing. You don't need to explain to the children what you're doing. They know who you are. They know your life. It's exactly how we used to live in 2000 when we were close with our family and not just flatmates. So I think it's the best the best choice actually.


Desiree 24:51

Yeah, and they should see our passion and our drive and what we're doing and realizing and chasing our own dreams. Right. They should see that and grow up with that. So yeah, I think we agree with you totally that it's beautiful.


Iva 25:12

And we can't we can't wait to you know, to get our hands on a copy and really share our own insights from reading this beautiful book that you've put together in the name of self-love, collectively for all of us to appreciate it more in ourselves, to practice it more within ourselves and to really spread the word into the new generations because they also need to see us being more self-loving so that they can emulate the same.


Desiree 25:42

Exactly. Yeah, so congratulations but also a big thank you for putting that out there and for all of us moms and living our true authentic self. So thank you.


Kristina 25:56

Thank you so much.


Iva 25:58

This conversation with Kristina was one of those incredibly powerful episodes that put front and center the importance of self-love and embracing all of our flaws and imperfections because let’s face it: there is a lot of power in being perfectly imperfect! As busy, on-the-go Mom Bosses Abroad, we are striving every day to be the best version we can be while also being the best moms to our children.

But sometimes, that can lead to burn out from trying to achieve perfection, or having everything being ‘just so’ and we might end up neglecting ourselves in the process. One quite we loved in Kristina’s book is, “Self-care is about surviving, while self-love is about thriving.”

Desiree 26:50

We dedicated a whole episode to the topic of self-care and self-love in our first season (episode 10) and also about how “Done is better than perfect” in (episode 2) so you can go and check them out if you haven’t already. We will be sharing the links in our show notes.

 And we will also be sharing ways to connect with Kristina and her powerful message of celebration of our whole selves, warts and all, and the glory that is to be found in living in our truth.

 Kristina’s amazing book " Becoming Flawesome" is on sale July 10, 2023. In it she shares her own journey from being on top of a personal growth empire like Mindvalley to stepping aside, conscious uncoupling from her husband, and walking her path towards being more honest with herself.


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Episodes Mentioned

Ep 2 Season 1 Done is Better Than Perfect | The Mompreneurs’ Motto of Tackling Productivity and Ditching Perfectionism

Ep 10 Season 1 Sharing is Caring | Self Care with Kids IS Possible and Here's How

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Kristina Mand-Lakhiani

Kristina Mand-Lakhiani is an international speaker, entrepreneur, artist, philanthropist, and mother of 2 kids. She is the co-founder of Mindvalley, a leading publisher in the personal growth industry. 


It started as a small meditation business operating out of an apartment in New York, the company quickly grew into a global educational organization offering top training for peak human performance to hundreds of thousands of students all around the world. 

Kristina believes life is too important to be taken seriously and makes sure to bring fun into every one of her roles: as a teacher, mother, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and world traveller. Kristina helps her students to virtually hack happiness by taking them through her unique frameworks. 


IG @kristinamand 





Being described as “10 years worth of therapy in one book,” Becoming Flawesome by Kristina Mänd-Lakhiani is a celebration of our whole selves, warts and all, and the glory that is to be found in living in our truth. In the book, Kristina shares her own journey from being on top of a personal growth empire like Mindvalley, to stepping aside, conscious uncoupling from her husband, and walking her path towards being more honest with herself.

You can get a sneak preview by downloading a chapter from her book titled ‘Calling Out The Critic’ for free here.

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