Shannon Russell This week Audra sits down with Shannon, a career transition coach with a diverse background in television production and entrepreneurship.
In this episode, Simon, Helene, and I explore what ‘friendship’ is, its importance in our lives, and the value it can bring to entrepreneurs.
For those of you feeling alone in your business, this is for you!
*What follows is an AI-generated transcript may not be 100% accurate.
[00:00:00] Audra: all right, So welcome to today’s podcast. I’ve got two special guests that we’ve tried twice now to get you guys on, and Mother Nature has had other plans for us here in Florida, but we’ve been able to be successful and get this podcast up and running.
[00:00:16] And so today I’ve got Simon and . I’m gonna say it wrong. He, no, he, No, he, No. Nope. . Dang it. We’ll get there. We’ll get there. We’ll get there. We’re gonna practice. We have an entire podcast to get there. It’s all good. There you go. welcome to the show today. I’m so excited to be able to talk to you guys and dive into the fun stuff that you guys are working on.
[00:00:39] So welcome.
[00:00:40] Helene: Yes, we are delighted to be here. Thank
[00:00:42] Audra: you. Yeah. So why don’t we take a few minutes to share with the audience, who you guys are, how you show up in the universe, what’s your place there, and then we’ll dive into the conversation from there. Yeah.
[00:00:55] we are Danes, so all the way over in Scandinavia.
[00:01:00] Helene: We are married, we are parents, we are people lovers. Oh yeah. We are big city lovers. We smack in the middle of Copenhagen with our two kids. , we are, I’m a first time entrepreneur. Simon is a serial
[00:01:14] Audra: entrepreneur. Nice .
[00:01:17] Helene: We are passionate and idealistic people who wanna make this world a better place.
[00:01:22] And honestly, our biggest purpose is to see each and every one of you who are listening and whoever we meet, become who you’re created to be and do in the world where you’re created to do
[00:01:36] Simon: good. How do we then outwork that? Yeah, . So [00:01:40] for many years, Professionally and privately we’ve been coaching and mentoring people in different areas of life.
[00:01:46] and a the same topic kind of kept on coming relationship between people and specifically a very overlooked one. The friendship. Yeah. There was something about the way people kept on talking about friendship that kind of just over the years developed something for us. The fact that either friendships have to appear naturally and it’s gotta be no work and you cannot fight in a friendship.
[00:02:12] Simon: And all of these that we by the way do not believe in whatsoever . These mix kept on urban legends Exactly. Kept on destroying people’s friendships. and so a couple of years back we decided to, let’s go down this rabbit hole and figure out what is this whole friendship deal. and that means that actually today we are something as exotic as.
[00:02:36] Friendship coaches. Yes.
[00:02:39] Audra: Nice. And we do see
[00:02:40] Helene: that when people get the friends that just see and love them for who they are. It’s just, it
[00:02:45] just grows your courage to show up. Yeah. And it grows your courage to step out into the world. So it’s flipping the whole self involvement movement around.
[00:02:53] Yeah. And starting with the relationships you need to support you rather than starting with working on yourself. they go together. Yeah. So it’s one or the other, but it’s just to go, we actually also need people to support us. We are a tribal kind of beings. Yes. We created for community and how do we build that community because it’s hard.
[00:03:13] Simon: Yeah. And it’s really interesting. It’s not just something that feels nice, it is actually [00:03:20] scientifically proven that the amount of friendships, of the quality of friendship is actually filling over to your physical body. It is more unhealthy to not have. Close relationships than massive drinking, smoking, and I’m not 15, 15 cigarettes a day.
[00:03:38] I’m not saying, but I’m saying there is a direct link between your mental happiness and how your body is working and the people around you is a massive influence on that. Yeah.
[00:03:51] Helene: So we’re pretty passionate about that. He talked
[00:03:53] Audra: lot about this , you couldn’t tell lot testing. You ate your jobs, you ate what you do.
[00:04:01] I adore
[00:04:02] Helene: it. I ado, We see people go, Like the other day, our very first clients sent us a picture. He was like, This is my birthday party. If I hadn’t met you guys, I wouldn’t have been able to fill my table with the amazing friends that I have today. Yeah. Aw. That was just a, That is such an incredible blessing to be part of your journey.
[00:04:23] and just to be able to do that, especially this is a big strong man who just got in touch with himself and got away from the toxic masculinity and actually figured out what it was to be a real man. And it was just an amazing journey. And just sitting with him, we had a little bit of a bromance going on through through the whole thing, but just really connecting as men and figuring out,
[00:04:44] Audra: But clearly that’s what he needed.
[00:04:47] Simon: And that’s where it all came from. His realization that he didn’t wanna be a man, like his father was a man, like distant and island. No one could speak to him, no one could ever challenge him. He didn’t wanna be that kind of a man to [00:05:00] his future kids, to his future wife. So he wanted to change it, and he definitely did.
[00:05:04] and that journey we got to walk on. That’s just amazing. Yeah. Wow. Yeah. .
[00:05:09] Audra: So how long does your program last? Is this a Okay. Is this new for you guys that you’re exploring?
[00:05:17] Helene: An online program? Yeah. Okay. Is relatively new. So we are still, right now, the last ones we boarded, we actually boarded them for a year.
[00:05:26] Okay. Cause we have a blended learning program where we have prerecorded videos. Okay. And we think a lot about how do we learn. So we have the input, the video, then we have reflections, and then we have exercises for people to go and do good. And then we have monthly coaching calls and just like support whenever you need it.
[00:05:46] Audra: Okay. And
[00:05:47] Helene: so if you take our. You watch one video a week, and then you have half a year is done, and then for the rest of the year you can really work on those skills and get our support to just really get to a point where you say, Now I have some deeper friendships. Yeah. So we mix it. So that’s what we are testing right now.
[00:06:06] Yeah, that’s good. We mix
[00:06:07] Simon: it between one on one sessions, group calls, these prerecorded messages and some of these practical initiatives to really go and get your fingers dirty as well. So it’s a big mixture of everything.
[00:06:18] Audra: Yeah. that’s good. There’s, there’s a few things that come from that.
[00:06:21] One, we all learn differently, right? , we’ve got different learning modalities. So offering, learn the content, now let’s actually implement it so it becomes a habit. That’s some of the biggest failure when it comes to online content or even in person content. You go to an event, they teach you a bunch of stuff, but there’s [00:06:40] nobody there on the backside that said that you could say, Hey, watch me.
[00:06:44] I’m gonna now actually try to do it and I need some feedback. Am I doing it right? Is this how it’s supposed to work without closing that loop? it’s very tough to take that stuff and turn them into consistent habits, and especially when it comes to personal development like that, unless you’ve got somebody to be that sounding board.
[00:07:04] Remember, we make up whatever we want in our mind, We did half of it, so that must be right. We’re there. Okay, we’re done. Let’s move on. Yeah,
[00:07:12] Simon: absolutely. Yeah. And that’s actually why we’re up to 12 months as well. Our very first client, they came in on a three month and we figured out pretty quickly, it’s way too short.
[00:07:20] There’s too many taboos with this and too many hard topics when you’re not physically with a person and we have to do it in a distance and do it online. We just saw that the pushback was a little longer than when we’ve had physical clients. So three months was just not enough. And so we took a client in for a six month and we still figured out, you know what, Let’s just try go all out and see where this takes us.
[00:07:44] So right now we’re testing out 12 month. Okay. And so far we’re loving that, but, Good. But let’s
[00:07:49] Audra: see, , see what the results are after that. Exactly. Now, is this a background for you guys? I know you said you’ve been doing coaching for some time, but is, have you always been in some kind of, some portion of this?
[00:08:01] Helene: I’ve been a train coach for the last 15, 15, 20
[00:08:06] Audra: years. Yeah, something like
[00:08:07] Helene: that. Okay. And then I worked as a leader first, and I didn’t do full-time coaching, but I’d worked as a leader first. Then I worked in human resources for. Human resource development that is not the management part, but the [00:08:20] development part and worked with culture and how people are thriving and how to upscale people for 10
[00:08:26] Audra: years.
[00:08:28] Simon: Yeah. Yeah. And I’m a trained teacher about profession. Okay. I actually then I took quality to, Cause I never went out as a teacher. I started working with, with troubled youth. So I did a lot of mentoring and coaching with troubled youth and gang relations. Then I did a couple of years as a street pastor working with, with homeless and people in addiction.
[00:08:48] and then I’ve had a little of a.com period , where I did an IT company and now I’m back on the coaching track again. Yeah. .
[00:08:59] Audra: So you’re more about the people than the machines.
[00:09:02] Simon: I love people a lot more than I like it. I find it fantastic, but I love people. That’s what makes me thrive. .
[00:09:10] Helene: Yeah. Yeah. Cuz on top of that, we’ve also been heavily involved our churches along the way.
[00:09:15] Yeah. besides our vocation, we’ve also been involved with coaching, mentoring, being mom and dad, being big sisters of brothers, and just trying to help people in their next steps as well.
[00:09:28] Audra: Good. Good. So you’ve seen the worst of people. If you’ve done a bunch of troubled stuff and then some of the best of people helping people know that you don’t have to stay in one spot, you can actually take the steps to improve on that.
[00:09:44] That’s great. Yes. so focusing on the friendship, how does it tie to small business? What are you, are those your customers, small business owners, or is it just anybody that is struggling to connect with their fellow human [00:10:00] in a more deep way?
[00:10:02] Simon: Yeah, we’ve, we try, When we started out, we had a very clear idea of the avatar , and we were clear on it had to be the business person.
[00:10:11] Yeah. The new season of life, the career had gone. But to be honest, our customers are anything from PhD student, the,the nurse, the, the filing
[00:10:26] Helene: who actually found the money to be a part of our program as well.
[00:10:29] Simon: So it’s been a lot more colorful than we thought it would be when we started out and where we initially thought it would come from.
[00:10:38] Also, because we’re fairly new to this kind of a price point when we are digging in, with a larger program like that opposed to just a single one into one session, we thought we had to find a different, Clientele, but we, we’re surprised where they come from. ,
[00:10:53] Audra: we would good,
[00:10:55] Helene: we would love to also connect more with small business owners, cuz we see that in, in the entrepreneurial world, there’s definitely a tendency that you sit alone, you work alone, you don’t have colleagues.
[00:11:06] And even when you then go to family dinners, you’re the odd one out, right? , I think we all know this, that it’s oh, so you have your own business and you’re dare to do that. That’s so strange. And we face imposter syndrome and fear rejection and we push through all these things and like we started talking about that.
[00:11:23] It’s good to always develop yourself. Yeah. can we not do that? What we our business.
[00:11:30] Audra: You don’t have a choice?
[00:11:32] Helene: No. We live outside the comfort zone a totally different way than most people do. And it’s, yeah, like I normally joke that well outside the [00:11:40] comfort zone is uncomfortable and we have to be able to handle
[00:11:43] Audra: that.
[00:11:44] Yeah. Yeah.
[00:11:44] Helene: So there’s definitely something about building friendships and of course we are lucky cuz we have each other doing this, but I’ve met with so many business owners who do it alone, who really, honestly, Outside feel like they fit out
[00:12:00] Audra: most places. Yeah. And the
[00:12:01] Simon: people you’re around, they don’t get your mindset.
[00:12:03] So we’ve, all the entrepreneurs we have spoken to about this, they really resonate because having someone we always talk about this, you are the average of the five people you are around and all of these things we like to say. But even more important to be in the right room with the right kind of people who actually get why you’re crazy enough to be an entrepreneur who’s cheering on you exactly who’s in your corner and understands some of those things.
[00:12:26] So for an entrepreneur to find the right kind of friends who don’t just like you and can drink a beer with you, but actually. No shoe well enough has the same kind of values, and you are driven by the same way. That is the kind of people that will push you on when it, when you’re struggling as an
[00:12:42] Audra: entrepreneur, when you’re stuck when, yeah.
[00:12:43] Yeah. I think that’s a very important topic. I’ve not addressed this in any of the podcasts yet. We’ve talked a lot about businesses and systems and. Directions and getting out of the stuck, but not really building a community of like-minded people. And like you said, maybe a few that are a little past you, maybe a few that you can help bring along, but how important that is to keep you focused and on that path.
[00:13:13] I know we talked about it earlier, but this part where you go through as a business owner where you’ve launched, you’re [00:13:20] making a few bucks, you’re maybe hiring a VA to help support you or you’re, you’re getting a little bit of momentum and things are starting to work. If you don’t figure out systems and you don’t figure out how to actually build on top of that, there is never no, there is never extra.
[00:13:38] What little bit of time you have left goes to family or responsibilities or your house or your pets or your kids, whatever that looks like. So finding time outside of that is almost nonexistent. I can honestly say in my thirties, I don’t know that I had any, I shouldn’t say any, maybe a handful of true friends and none of them were self.
[00:14:05] All of them had jobs, but I had three coffee shops. I had three kids under the age of 10. I had 65 employees. I was a full-time student, double majoring. There was no time for anything but exi, just trying to get through it. so I get it. There were a lot of times where I would go home at the end of the day saying, Oh my gosh, I cannot get up and do this again.
[00:14:30] I am done. I still did. And of course I graduated and everybody survived. And, but it was tough. And if I think at that time, if I would’ve had somebody, I could just pick up the phone and call and say, I’m having a really tough day today. Yeah. that understood what I was going through. Yeah, exactly.
[00:14:50] most of them didn’t. They’re like, Gosh, Audra, why do you keep taking stuff on? So stop working so hard? I’m like, that’s not really in my nature. I don’t, I’m gonna keep [00:15:00] pushing. Yeah. you’re not hanging out or you’re not. Yeah. you have different priorities.
[00:15:04] Audra: So how do you, I guess we could take that as a topic. How do you balance that? I’ve driven, I got things I wanna accomplish, but I know that I still need that connection with humans. What do you, how do you tell people to bridge that?
[00:15:18] Helene: that’s a really good question.
[00:15:21] Simon: I think for most entrepreneurs, I think most of us are, when you’re starting your business out, you’re used to digging in and saying, you find some passion pillars.
[00:15:31] what am I all about? What drives me in life? And I think you have to sit down and make sure that one of those is you actually sit down and. Who am I as a person and just understanding that you have a certain capacity and the way you treat that capacity that is yourself, your personal life, it actually spills over into what you can do other places as well, and understanding that you treat yourself as a resource and you treat that resource right.
[00:16:00] Simon: Then you can either get more of it or less of it. But I also think one of the key lessons that I had to learn myself was that quantity versus quality is a big factor when it comes to when I give my best. So understanding myself in that sense that. I don’t become better just cuz I go from 60 hours to 80 hours.
[00:16:21] Most studies actually show that those last hours, they’re not giving what you think they are. They’re all mental. You think you have to, And I’ll even go back and say,what’s up with the 60 hours? Because there is just a limit to what you can, But if you then exchange some of those hours and say, I’m gonna do what really fills me up, [00:16:40] See my kids with quality time.
[00:16:42] So I come next morning, recharge, see my loved ones. You’ll see the difference cuz you come full charge next day and not just 75%. So there is something to what values do you have? What recharges you in the right way? and trying to find that real balance is it’s sometimes hard work to find out who am I actually and where do I get that?
[00:17:03] But that’s the key to finding that. That’s such
[00:17:06] Helene: an important mindset shift, isn’t it? Yeah. Just cause we work more hours doesn’t make us more productive. Nope. But we actually have to fill ourselves out as well. We might be able to push through like you did. You’re very driven, strong woman.
[00:17:21] Audra: It was a tough five years, so let me tell you exactly. Tough years.
[00:17:26] Helene: The fun part might have disappeared. It might be fun on the other side cuz you’ve got some things that you can now use, but it’s , what we talk a lot about is also enjoying the journey. , just remember to enjoy the life you actually have and not live your life for a future that might or might not come.
[00:17:40] Because we can do that as
[00:17:41] Audra: entrepreneurs. Oh absolutely. In three,
[00:17:44] Helene: Here’s when my business is there. And we can do that as humans because everybody does that. yeah. It’ll all get better.
[00:17:51] Simon: And I think there’s something about practicing. The presence. Yes. Yes. I am one of those guys. I am very visionary.
[00:18:00] I love the big picture. I’m not detail, I’m picture guy,
[00:18:05] Audra: so I get details by the, you’re
[00:18:09] Simon: give a blank canvas and I will paint a picture. Almost 80% of it and then the last 20% I forget about. But ,
[00:18:17] Audra: you have to finish the other 20. At least [00:18:20] take them until he
[00:18:20] Simon: does it. Yeah. I found out how often I lived tomorrow.
[00:18:24] Yeah. Where In 15 and in five years. And I actually realized that I didn’t enjoy any moment. I remember it was one of our first vacations together when she lovingly said, Do you see the irony in the fact that you’re on our vacation? Googling our next vacation. How is that? And that dawned I was like, Oh wow.
[00:18:49] I didn’t even realize because I was just used to living ahead of time and practicing just being present where I am. And it goes for work. It goes for when you’re with your kid, when you’re with your friends, be there, don’t be anywhere else. Shut everything else off and just dig into what you’re doing right now and give that your a hundred percent.
[00:19:06] And I think there is a mentality shift there as well. Yeah. Equality where you are instead of just being spread out over everything.
[00:19:14] Audra: I take away from that section, at least for me, when I got too far ahead of myself, thinking about the next thing, it can get very overwhelming because you realize not only where you’re at and how far you still have to go, but then you lose sight of everything that you just did.
[00:19:32] So sometimes I’ll get in that. where I’m like just so overwhelmed of the big vision of what I’m trying to build, and I’m like, Oh my gosh, I have 47,000 more steps before I feel like I can say I’m there. I have to go take a break. I have to step away from the computer, go outside, put my earbuds in, listen to some music, maybe go for a run and just bring myself back.
[00:19:57] Okay, wait a second. I’m right where [00:20:00] I’m supposed to be. There’s lessons that I need to learn here. I’ve already come so far. I need to have some gratitude for what I’ve already done that will show up. What It’s time to show up. Let’s just be here again. And it’s. , it really does take focused energy to pull yourself back to that.
[00:20:21] It doesn’t come organically. Yeah. Because we’re so driven and we’re Yeah. Purposed of trying to achieve or trying to get there, and it’s never gonna end for somebody like me, my kids are like, Really, Mom? you’re at a place now. my kids are grown and I have three grandkids and they’re like, and I’m like, Guys, it’s not about, It’s not about getting a certain dollar, it’s not about achieving a certain goal.
[00:20:48] This is just how I’m wired. When I’m not working, I’m online learning about new things, right? So I’ll work 12 hours. Now, mind you, I don’t have, I’m here by myself, so I don’t have any family in Florida here, so I have plenty of time. So I work 10, 8, 10, 12 hours, and then I take a little bit of a break. I’ll go for a run or a swim.
[00:21:12] Then I go back and I learn something new. I’ll spend time like I’m down this rabbit hole with AI right now, and I’m learning all kinds of cool stuff about it, but that’s fun for me. They’re like, Oh, seriously, But it’s not work. If you enjoy it, it’s not work. Sure. No, it isn’t. So it definitely makes sense.
[00:21:33] Helene: I really, Yeah, I really like that, that you. That you learn so much?
[00:21:38] Audra: I do. I think I’m just,
[00:21:39] Helene: I’m [00:21:40] reminding on a practical note though, if you as an entrepreneur want to buy Yeah. you said the magic words early on, you said habits. Creating
[00:21:48] Audra: rhythms. Yeah,
[00:21:50] Helene: absolutely. I have just, one of the things that we talk to people about is, so when it is it easy for you to see your friends or how do you put them in the calendar first?
[00:21:59] Because you know there’s always gonna be more work. Always that was like those four hours Friday night or those two hours on a Tuesday afternoon, you can easily build them with work. Yeah. But if you plan ahead Yeah. And create rhythms. And it could be the Thursday of the month, , or I have some girls that I meet with an hour from seven 30 to eight 30 in the morning.
[00:22:25] Good. And we talk and we pray together. Once a week because we can do it cuz we live close to each other. So creating these rhythms as an entrepreneur, put it in your weekly rhythm as you do everything else. Yeah. That is a great way to balance it. Okay. when you want to prioritize friendships as well.
[00:22:44] Audra: Okay. Because like you said, I’ve just, Yeah. I’m just getting out there again. about a year ago, I got out of a eight and a half year relationship. So boyfriend and I decided, I, it was, the relationship was no longer serving me and I was just ready to move on to something else. So our friends, so for many years our friends were couples.
[00:23:06] Yeah. And many of those were originally his people, because I’m not from here. So some of the women I’ve stayed in touch with, some of the guys I’ve stayed in touch with, but they’re not really now my friends, they’re his friends. And that’s okay. [00:23:20] And then I moved and I broke my ankle. So I was inside for four months
[00:23:27] Oh, wow. So I’ve just been without a boot and without all the. Trip up of that for about a month and a half. But I Congratulations. I know, but back to your point, I realized how important it is and what it’s lacking. So I started, we have different groups locally and women’s groups. So I’ve gone out and I’ve done, where a bunch of women meet downtown and do a three mile walk.
[00:23:55] Yeah, great. And I’ve done some meetings where everybody meets up and it’s like a social type thing. Yeah. And I can’t ride a bike yet. I really wanna start doing biking again, but I can’t ride a bike yet. Oh. But I do realize that, and some of the first steps for me is it’s easy for me to connect work-wise, cuz that’s a very comfortable place for me.
[00:24:16] So I start there. and then I’ll expand it out from, we talk about a networking and maybe now it’s grabbing coffee. Maybe it’s going out, having a drink or dinner and I’m good, but I do realize it’s lacking at this point in my life. Yeah. Yeah. So I appreciate that. Cause I do need that reminder.
[00:24:34] . Yeah. And it takes energy.
[00:24:36] Simon: It does. It takes energy and it takes a certain kind of vulnerability as well when you’re starting to check someone else out and awkwardness. Yeah. I was out on a coffee, coffee chat with a friend of mine this morning where it’s a fairly new friendship.
[00:24:50] And that first time when you’re looking at someone’s wanna be friends, , or what do you say when you’re 39 and you’re looking at another guy saying, you seem cool. [00:25:00] Let’s hang out a little bit. But taking that step and saying, You know what, Yeah. I feel like we, we get, we come across really cool to each other.
[00:25:09] Do you wanna hang out? Do you wanna have a coffee? And then starting to put that into words. But it’s a little bit uncomfortable because we feel like it should just happen. We should bump into care. Local coffee bar, right? yeah. But putting it into words, and I actually did it today, this morning again, I said, You know what?
[00:25:23] We’ve done this a few times now I’m having a great time. How are you doing? I’m having a great time. He’s I love that you’re talking about this. I love that you bring it up cuz it’s just easy. No games. Let’s just talk about it. And so today I was like, I’m enjoying it. Are you still enjoying yourself?
[00:25:38] Yes. Good. Let’s continue. So there is that kind of vulnerability, but I love that when you put it into words, you either find out what if he’d said, you know what, not really. Then I hadn’t wasted another six, 12 months trying to pursue something. So putting it into words, daring to be a little bit vulnerable, and then checking out some people, Friendship dating
[00:25:59] Audra: Yeah. You guys need to write a book about this.
[00:26:03] Helene: She
[00:26:04] Simon: released the rough draft
[00:26:05] Audra: today. good. I think it’s super important. think about Brene Brown and what she went through really bringing, and not that she was the first one to do it, but she was the first one to be loud enough to get some attention, to say, Look, it’s okay to be vulnerable.
[00:26:23] It’s not a weakness, it’s a strength, and this is why, and this is the science behind it for all the head people, and this is the way to get around it where it’s acceptable. I think the conversation that you guys are having is so important. Nobody’s talking about this. [00:26:40]
[00:26:40] Simon: Exactly. Yeah. And we love Brene Brown, by the way.
[00:26:44] She, Huge inspiration. Yeah. We are writing a book right now about this. Good. And it’s our first book, so we are a little bit,are we about to be authors? But it’s very interesting and we do see a lot of breakthroughs in people’s lives when we get to get in there. But we also see that there is a lot of taboo around this.
[00:27:03] So we see that people have a little bit of a hard time admitting that they might need a friendship coach because it’s supposed to have a natural weekend. Yeah. You’re supposed to know how everyone else just does it right. And no, they don’t. Oh, I don’t. but once we get in there, we also see that it spills over and everything else once.
[00:27:20] Handle the skills that it takes. It’s not a personality thing, it’s a skill-based sign. Is it okay? You can learn this. Yes, definitely. and I even heard an introvert when they say, for us introverts, we of have to wait for an extrovert to adopt us, to get friends. no, it’s so not true.
[00:27:38] But there is something to that myth that people actually believe that, but it’s so not true. and we would love to debunk that myth. Give us the platform. We’ll shout it out anywhere. Yeah. And we just see a time, and again, we have so different clients that all come up with the same conclusion. I now have the tools to find the friends that I need.
[00:27:59] And it’s some hard work, but it’s very doable and it is something that everyone can
[00:28:03] Audra: do. it’s almost like a spin on. So we, for, we’re all told about this mindset work and us evolving through childhood crap. Parental crap or our twenties, whenever all that stuff was messed up, whatever life has [00:28:20] happened, right?
[00:28:20] yeah. but you’ve ev you guys have taken it to what that next evolution should be, and I think it’s such an important conversation to be having, especially with so many people. to go back specifically to me as a target market, so many self-employed people, maybe their spouse has a job or their partner has a job, and because they need some security, and then they’ve got their risk taker, right?
[00:28:46] Audra: But I don’t care how supportive they are, they still don’t completely understand what you’re going through and the risks that you’re taking. So it’s not just about, everybody talks about masterminds and everybody talks about getting into groups with other entrepreneurs. Still not the same.
[00:29:03] Being around other business people is not friendships. Not necessarily friendships. I’ve been in a lot of masterminds and those, some of those people were not people I was gonna go have a beer with. no. This was business. We were just, I didn’t connect to them that way. A few of them. Yes. And I’m actually still friends with them today, but it’s very few and far between because I wasn’t positioning myself for friendship.
[00:29:28] I was positioning myself for a business transaction. Yeah. Completely different mindset. Yes. Yeah. And
[00:29:36] Helene: also you don’t necessarily share values or right deeper mindset of your business. There’s many ways to build a business. There’s many underlying values to why you build a business, right? And I definitely find business owners that I connect really well with.
[00:29:52] And obviously we are in this field. We wanna do good in the world. That’s what we started with. So we are definitely drawn to people who [00:30:00] start businesses because they’re hard let, because they are passionate about something. But there are many people who start businesses for different reasons. And there’s nothing wrong with that.
[00:30:09] no. Of course. It will probably not just be the people that we will connect with on a friendship level as well. And then this is one of those funny friendships, myths I hear, or advice I hear a lot is if you wanna get a new friend, we’ll try and get a hobby. what are the chance of that? I’ll find someone where I share my values when I go bowling,
[00:30:28] Audra: right?
[00:30:29] It’s true.
[00:30:31] Helene: You, it could happen. Sure. Yeah. But the chances, if I go somewhere where my values are more seen, where more people congregate around something that’s deeper important to me, chances are a lot bigger of catching that fish than it is at my local bowling
[00:30:48] Audra: club. Yeah. Yeah, that’s a great point.
[00:30:52] Simon: And back to what you said again about having colleagues and different entrepreneurs, meeting people in networks.
[00:30:58] we talked to so many people who’s retired and now they thought they had friends 30 years, 40 years of working together as colleagues, and now they’re divided by 10 or 15 miles, but they don’t see each other every. And all of a sudden they have lost contact because there was never talked about what is this thing we have.
[00:31:21] Simon: We have a lot of fun in the cantina. We have a lot of fun in the launch breaks and even on business retreats and all of that. But we never sat down and said, What is this? Are we more than colleagues? And then people get hurt because the other person should have said something, someone should have called.
[00:31:38] But just because no one, [00:31:40] especially our gender, sorry guys, but we are notoriously bad at this . No one said, You know what? What is this thing we have? Can I be the first want to just ask? And because we don’t do that, we lose. we lose friendships, we lose possibilities of connecting with someone. And this is the law of entropy.
[00:32:00] Whatever you don’t work on, it will decay. So there is no such thing as status quo And that’s another myth. There’s no such thing as a friendship that just stays the same. no, you have to work on it. You have to keep on talking. When a season changes, you have to have the season change conversation.
[00:32:16] And that can be retirement or having a baby or a moving city have that talk so that you can develop it and move forward instead of. Decaying. Yeah. Sorry, I’m on a, around .
[00:32:28] no. It makes perfect sense. the important things I want people that are listening to this to take away from is do some reflecting.
[00:32:35] take a look at your life. Are you, do you feel like it’s balanced? Or balance isn’t the right word. Entrepreneurs, we don’t have balanced lives , so I don’t even wanna say that we live in extremes. Yeah, exactly. But I guess it would be more like, do you feel fulfilled when it comes to that area of your life?
[00:32:55] Audra: Do you feel like you are living your best life as a friend or as somebody that is looking for a friend? And if not, then maybe it’s time to set a little side to explore that, set some time aside and just say, Okay. my business takes up this much, my family takes up this much, I’ve got this extra 10% here.
[00:33:15] What do I wanna do with it? Would it enrich my life even [00:33:20] further? Putting in the energy to go down this path and gets, start connecting with other humans again. Covid really put everybody behind. I imagine you guys are doing a lot of cleanup just from that by itself. Yeah, definitely.
[00:33:36] Definitely worthwhile.
[00:33:37] Simon: Yeah. Yeah. and I say to dare to take that talk as well and have that reflection is so important. I was talking to a and IT specialist the other day in a company and he was, we were talking about this whole tension he was in, he’s in a, an IT company where they do a lot of good, it’s a very soft area of an IT company and he’s Oh, I’m feeling a little bit selfish that.
[00:34:01] I wanna Porsche and I’d love a boat and I know that my capabilities as a person are there. I can make these kind of money. I’m feeling a little bit selfish that I’m even saying that cuz I’m in this field and I know that if I change direction, I could go here. And I just asked him. But where does this coincide with the values you have right now?
[00:34:24] Because I’m also hearing you say that you feel immense amount of joy from doing the work you’re doing right now and you have time for your kids. So what is most important right now and just remembering that life is long and what’s more important right now? That the push or the other things.
[00:34:40] Simon: And I think that’s the question most entrepreneurs have to ask themselves as well. . Cause if I don’t have the extra 10%, shouldn’t I maybe find them and say, Okay, my company may scale 10% slower. I’m betting it won’t, but that’s a different story. But if we just do the math, I’ll take 10% outta the company time to,to spend or [00:35:00] waste on myself if you want to, and see if that gives me some energy.
[00:35:03] And if the company scales 10% slower, is that worth it? Because I’m actually gaining some of the side. But again, I’d say it probably won’t happen. , because you’ll gain that energy, you’ll gain that passion when you come back to it. But asking yourself the question is so important.
[00:35:19] that’s a whole different perspective than what I typically address it at. No, it’s good. I’m here to learn too. I don’t know everything. I’m far from it, but that is, See, so when I started my making my point for listeners, I was finding that 10% and you actually refocused that and said,no, you’re not finding it.
[00:35:41] Audra: You’re gonna shave some of it off that work stuff that you’re, it’s 85% of your life. And,that is actually a very interesting perspective, , but I think it’s val, it’s definitely valid. I think more people need to reflect on that, especially at the beginning. it’s hard and it’s one of those, everybody says you have to be a hundred percent focused, but what are you sacrificing while you’re so committed to making that happen?
[00:36:12] Like I said, there’s no such thing as balance for us, but there can be pockets of joy while we’re going through this process, and it doesn’t have to be so lonely I think is super important as well.
[00:36:27] yeah, definitely. And counting the cost. I know it’s counter culture in the, in, in the entrepreneurial world.
[00:36:33] Simon: One of my first mentors in the entrepreneurial world, he was like, Sit down. You talk to your wife and your kids and [00:36:40] say, We’ll see you in five years. Daddy is doing something important. I just don’t agree, , I’m sorry, except that I just don’t agree that it has to be like that. Actually think it is another way.
[00:36:51] And this same guy, he lost his first marriage, ands like, Oh, you’re not a great example of where I wanna go in life, because she wasn’t a part of it. And so long story short, I do think maybe it’s not the balance, but the value side. What values and do you have yourself as part of this? Are you a whole person in this position you’re in?
[00:37:11] And I think that’s the important aspect question to ask them. And
[00:37:14] Helene: is the legacy even worth it if you don’t have your people
[00:37:17] Audra: with you? Yeah, true. That’s a great point. That’s definitely something that’ll slow you down. Yeah. Yeah. And
[00:37:27] Simon: no, no two people are the same. We cannot compare, we cannot compare to what the other person is doing and the amount of energy one person has.
[00:37:34] so we all have to go on our own journey here to figure out what is my way of coming through life. But that’s also where you become beautiful. That’s where you shine when you actually take the time to say what makes me thrive. What motivates me? What am I running away from? . Because that’s also sometimes the thing when you digging into, it’s is there something over here you’re not looking into?
[00:37:55] Simon: Yeah. But so what makes you shine? And I think that’s an important question. That’s also why we see with our own clients, that they come back and they realize I’m so much better at my job now. My good, My kids like me better cuz I’m finding this energy inside of myself. So we just see that it’s spilling out because the inside of you, the true you is coming out.
[00:38:15] . And that’s the person that most of us don’t have a vocabulary for. And that’s what [00:38:20] we are helping our clients to find as well. Because as we always say, if you wanna be loved for who you are or you have to know who you are so you can show it out there. So we are doing some digging with our clients to figure out
[00:38:31] Simon: That’s good. So we can show that. So we can actually get away from Instagram and just show the
[00:38:36] Audra: real. What a great, that’s a great marketing campaign. before, Instagram shots after Instagram shots. That’s a great way to be able to show your results for your clients. Cause it is all fake. It is all not, it’s not reality.
[00:38:54] It’s so disappointing. And I don’t think it’s going away. . So if somebody had interest in finding out more, I’m not ready for a coach yet, but I realize it’s a problem. What would you suggest for them? let’s stick with the, I’m self-employed. I don’t know if men or women are bigger clients for you guys.
[00:39:12] it’s 50 50 right now. Is it? We think we have a lot of men who needs to get on board , to be honest. Sure. Yeah. and we wanna focus a lot on men cuz we think there is something about what is the real man that we wanna get in on that discussion a little bit.
[00:39:28] Helene: but again, then there’s the problem awareness Yeah.
[00:39:31] That we can talk about. . Okay. That can be hard as entrepreneurs to, yeah. To actually. Put language around, it’s in a way so that people get, Okay, I really need this. . But yeah. but I would start, you can start connecting with us on Instagram cuz we actually do put up, a lot of value, a lot of just little thoughts, reflections, simplified how-tos and we’re well aware that you can’t do it all, but you can’t do it all unless you have a coach.
[00:39:58] Sure. So [00:40:00] connecting with us at Instagram, we are trying to get really loud on different aspects and areas of these
[00:40:05] Simon: friendships. Good. Yeah. And don’t hesitate to connect with us. we have a paid program. Yeah. But we are trying to give a lot of value out because just as much as we wanna have clients, even more than that, we actually wanna get loud about this cuz we think this is a game changer for people where Amish can.
[00:40:22] so please connect with us. We are, we do have a Facebook group where we give a lot of free value, but we are changing that around. So over the next month we’ve gonna do podcast where we’re giving away all of that and writing a book. And so connect with us on Instagram and I can shout it out here and maybe there’s a link, but it’s Simon and Helina at Instagram.
[00:40:41] Simon: So Simon and a n d Helene, h e l e n e. and then you’ll find us, and in our link tree there’s links to everything. but please just write us. Go ahead on a call with us. No worries. We just wanna get
[00:40:54] Audra: loud. . I think that’s gonna be your best approach. You’re gonna have to do some educating before this becomes normalized enough where, it’s a.
[00:41:05] It’s no longer taboo conversation to have, like we started with this. It’s just, it’s part of vulnerability, it’s part of friendship, it’s part of people evolving. This is normal now to talk about it and you guys are definitely early to the game cuz I do not hear people talking about it in this light. And I spend, I’m in the matrix quite a bit, but I think, I know that so many people can get value out of that, especially if you’re a home alone in a room and trying to figure out how to balance all these moving parts.
[00:41:38] It is overwhelming for [00:41:40] anybody. I don’t care if you’re making a dollar or you’re at 10 million. It can be a very lonely and overwhelming space to be. The more that we can, we’re drivers, right? We’re ambitious people. We know how to work on ourself, otherwise you’re not gonna get to that kind of revenue.
[00:41:58] But there’s also, you always find that there’s gaps. And we have gaps. And this is a big one that I think, business owners need to explore And allow that side of them to develop. Because we’ve, everything, If you wanna grow as a business owner, you gotta become a better leader and a better Yeah.
[00:42:16] Marketing person. A better sales person. Nobody ever says you gotta become a better friend .
[00:42:23] Helene: But there’s something to it.
[00:42:24] Audra: There is something to it
[00:42:26] Helene: also, if we believe in the world where the way forward is collaboration.
[00:42:30] Audra: Yeah. Yeah. Then
[00:42:32] Helene: that, that needs, that at least has a lot of aspects that connects to a friendship as well.
[00:42:38] Audra: That’s actually a nice, Yeah, that’s a nice bridge word from partnerships to collaboration to friendships. That could be a nice little bridge that you build to move people across it. Because like I said, and not that everybody thinks we all, we don’t think the same. But when we first had our talk and you guys say friendship for me, I immediately go to, I don’t have time.
[00:43:03] We know that’s bs. I don’t, I’m not making the time plain and simple. Yes, that’s a bigger thing, but it’s getting my guard down enough to have a conversation like this where I can see. Not only the opportunity that [00:43:20] I can grow, but then I can also connect and do others. And I do a lot of give back.
[00:43:24] Audra: I do a lot of volunteering, I teach a lot, all of that for free. So I have my way of giving back. It’s just, I can teach people how to make money. I’m good at it. That’s a skill I’ve got. That’s what God gave me. So that’s what I’m using. Love it. Cheering that on. Definitely. Yeah. we play to our strengths, but that’s still not friendship.
[00:43:44] I still go home alone. I still don’t call any of those people on the phone. I don’t get coffee with them. There’s, it’s a different kind of relationship. It definitely is. Yeah. For sure. Yeah. It’s fun. It’s a journey, man. . Yeah.
[00:44:01] Helene: Come on. It really is. And we definitely resonate with it being, we sometimes say that this is what, 30.
[00:44:09] Therapy for marriages was 20 years ago now. Was that something you did? And today that’s that’s the norm. It’s of course you seek counseling before you get a divorce or if you have problems. It’s just that’s what you do. Or even get a fitness coach. Yeah. Yeah. And we’re like, we feel, we hope that it will move faster than 20 years because people are aware of the connection and there is a lot of vulnerability conversations.
[00:44:31] Yeah. But it’s definitely, it’s that kind of feel there is to it. And sometimes we’re like, are we just mad that we’re talking about
[00:44:39] Simon: this to all the future friendship coaches? You’re welcome, . I know,
[00:44:44] Audra: that’s what I was gonna say. You guys need to build a coaching program out of it where you can train other people to be deliverers of this, to really be able to.
[00:44:55] The mass movement, the book will do a lot. Getting on podcasts, [00:45:00] having the book laying down the foundation of tying in all these little things that you’ve just talked about will be paramount to be, they’re gonna read. You guys are the founders of, really getting the movement behind this topic.
[00:45:14] Yeah. That’s awesome. That’s what
[00:45:16] Helene: we’re really hoping to at least that it will gather some of the threads. Yeah. For
[00:45:22] Simon: us, it doesn’t matter whether we were there first or not, but it matters that we see people get to step into who they’re supposed to be. And that is just stinking beautiful and that’s what we want.
[00:45:34] and if we sit in our eighties looking back and saying there were lives that were changed because people dared to be their beautiful selves, dare to step into it, dare say, You know what, this is what I thrive in. This is what I need in a friendship. People just become so much more. Alive once they actually realize that what they have to give to the world is something special and to friendships.
[00:45:57] Simon: And so if we look back in 50 years time and look at people’s life being changed, that’s the most important thing. And that’s where we wanna go. That’s where we wanna sit on Dirty thumbs. ,
[00:46:09] Audra: how do you, Oh, go ahead. Go ahead.
[00:46:13] Helene: I just said that luckily we’re also blessed enough to be on a lot of different podcasts where we get to be loud about it.
[00:46:19] Like we got to be on us. So that’s also part of the journey of just trying to
[00:46:23] Audra: raise awareness. What were you saying with our kids? Yeah. How did they, Are you trying to instill these skills in them now that they’re little? Oh, yes. What that looks like.
[00:46:35] Simon: I wanna say I’m sorry to a nine year old cuz he’s so reflective.
[00:46:39] [00:46:40] Yeah. Oh, is He’s talking about stuff like this in a way when I’m like, wow. I’m almost sorry cuz he will talk about it and reflect on some of these topics. Cause he’s just, he’s a sponge. He’s taking Yeah. So it’s definitely something we are working on and that’s actually one of the future books I think we will be writing is to the parent of how you teach your kids, but also to the teacher, how you teach your classroom this.
[00:47:03] So there are things of how you actually pass this on to the next generation. And we are working right now with our five and our nine year old on how to do that in a balanced way. But we definitely see that Asher, our nine year old, he has some reflections about friendships. That is very interesting.
[00:47:21] Audra: And he’s talking about, that was not a good dynamic we had in this. You’re nine. I’m And he’s a boy too. So he goes to his little bully friend. This is not a healthy relationship. .
[00:47:33] Helene: Yeah. Like son, that was not a nice way to frame what you wanted to say to me. But
[00:47:38] Simon: seriously, one time someone was being a little bit offensive about boy girl Dynamics in his class and Asher’s response was to show up in dress the next day.
[00:47:49] His this little too skirt. Like I’m not one of those guys. how do you do that, buddy? I’m like, You’re braver than most adults are. There’s I’m not gonna be part of this. I’m gonna bring dress like,
[00:48:00] Audra: Wow, . That’s awesome.
[00:48:03] Helene: It is. But one of the things we do is that we do, they do talk about friendships in school and the after school activities and stuff like that.
[00:48:10] Yeah. It just seems like we, we forget to continue the conversation after you turned, what? 12 or something? Yeah. Yeah. We don’t, which means [00:48:20] that we actually sometimes have the same conversations with the 17 year old than we do with the, with a 37 year old. , because we haven’t developed the adult language around friendship.
[00:48:30] At least in Denmark, there’s a lot of focus on how to treat each other. No bullying and all that stuff. That happens all through your school years. Yeah. But then sometimes on you. Forget. Yeah. And so it seems like our language and understanding, because an adult friendship is so different than a friendship when you’re
[00:48:48] Audra: 15.
[00:48:49] Oh, yeah. Yeah.
[00:48:51] Helene: and we know that instinctively, right? Because everything is so different from when you’re 15. But we actually encounter so many people who don’t have the language for how is it different? Yeah. And then you settle. and you just have buddies because this must be adult friendships because the height of relationships, of course are having a spouse or a boyfriend, girlfriend, whatever you have.
[00:49:13] And then it’s your kids. That’s the core people in your life and you forget and you live at your friendships because you assume they can’t be as deep and they can’t be as committed and they can’t be as vulnerable and they can’t be as giving. Then you limit them. Absolutely. and I think that’s one of the things we also really wanna help people see and break it.
[00:49:32] That you can live stinking beautiful, connected, love filled lives, and you don’t need to have a partner or even have kids.
[00:49:42] Audra: No partners right now,
[00:49:45] Helene: and I have, we have some amazing people in our lives who don’t have partners, and honestly, we live in Copenhagen. 50% of old people living in Copenhagen
[00:49:53] Audra: are single.
[00:49:54] Are they? Maybe I Copen. Yes. You
[00:49:58] Helene: right. and but we limit [00:50:00] and we then deprive ourselves with these beautiful friendships because we assume that they can’t be all that they can be.
[00:50:08] Audra: And that was my red, I think. Yeah. Yeah. No, that’s good though. It gives you a lot to think about, especially from the child age to high school.
[00:50:15] . So if I think back to high school, you, I had lots of best girlfriends and then I got married, started having children. I had to go to college after I got divorced. But once you, And then I was a adult going to college, so I wasn’t in sororities or hanging out. So I didn’t build those kind of friendships.
[00:50:35] Audra: No. Those kids, they were younger than me, probably 10 years younger than me. you’re right. There’s nothing there that bridges that gap. It’s not like you’re gonna have that conversation with anybody. How awkward is that? ? Yeah. yeah, that’s a great point.
[00:50:49] Yeah. So there’s definitely so many areas of this where we just assume, Yeah, and we don’t dare be vulnerable enough to talk about it and dig into it.
[00:51:00] Simon: And we just love those conversations and we love digging into it, and we see that there’s so much to gain from getting there. .
[00:51:11] Audra: That’s awesome. All right, you guys, I know we’ve been on for a minute here. This has been great. This is such a important topic. as the community of Zindolabs Grows, I want you guys to come back.
[00:51:22] We gotta figure out like a regular time that we could come on, a couple times a month and maybe just share some things that are working for you or that you’re seeing, because I wanna help you guys get the word out as well. And because I don’t know your space, it’s definitely an area [00:51:40] of challenge, vulnerability in me, not so much.
[00:51:42] But, I know how intellectually, I know how important it is. but I think if I can be a conduit to help you guys spread your message, I would love to do that so much. Oh wow. Would love that. Appreciate that. Absolutely. That would be
[00:51:58] Simon: fun. Yes. And if we can bring something to your community and help that out, we just wanna get it out there definitely
[00:52:05] Audra: as much as we can.
[00:52:06] So when are we gonna see the book?
[00:52:07] the rough draft was done today. We have had a, we have a deadline for a month from now for us to be editing and so on. And so in a
[00:52:16] Helene: month it should be ready to send out to some people who are gonna give us feedback. So think we’re gonna see the book in the end of this year, I think.
[00:52:23] Yeah. It’s probably that we are not looking to write the longest book. We are looking to write the most practical book on how to build new friends. Yeah. Good. And then actually, once we’re done with that, we will write a book about how to deepen the friendships you already have. yeah. Good. And that would be, and it’s a handbook kind of vibe.
[00:52:40] Good. Because we wanna make it super practical. And so much knowledge but much more practice.
[00:52:47] Simon: Yeah, and as you said earlier as well, how we get overwhelmed cuz we have 30, 37,000 steps ahead of us . That’s often where we break down as well. A good intention, a good habit. We get overwhelmed. So we are making it very practical.
[00:53:02] It’s always No, I just wanna hear why you one step and then practice that one step for a week and then now you step more. So that’s very much our approach. We don’t wanna get too technical. There’s a lot of science and there’s a lot of technical, but we wanna make it a next step a thing so we don’t overthink it and [00:53:20] procrastinate cuz that’s the number one enemy.
[00:53:22] So we are trying to make it very practical. some great solutions, some practices in there where you can just start really digging into what it is for you and taking those steps instead of just thinking about
[00:53:32] Audra: it. So after the book then you guys are gonna do a TED talk. Yes. That
[00:53:37] Helene: would, we know
[00:53:38] Simon: way everyone together.
[00:53:39] Cause we would love that .
[00:53:40] do you guys have ’em locally there? We have TEDx.
[00:53:43] Simon: We don’t
[00:53:44] Audra: have Yeah,
[00:53:45] Simon: the TEDx in Denmark. yeah. But we, every now and again there’s a TEDx. but we don’t know of a way to get on them, but we do love some speaking .
[00:53:54] Helene: Need to get a little louder, a little longer before we
[00:53:57] Simon: get there.
[00:53:57] I don’t think our brand is strong enough yet for us to get on those. But
[00:54:01] Audra: don’t I disagree. You guys have plenty of experience. So maybe not enough people know about you yet, but you’re already an expert. So you just show up and do what you do. The people will find you,
[00:54:15] Simon: right? Yeah. We’ll definitely be here and we’ll keep on pushing, that’s for sure.
[00:54:19] Yeah. That’s awesome. We found our niche, we found our little corner and this is where we were gonna. Keep on shouting and try to build that .
[00:54:26] Audra: good. I appreciate you guys having this conversation and I know people listening, you may dismiss it, that ego steps in says, nah, nah, I don’t need to worry about that right now.
[00:54:36] I’m busy, I’m building a business. But it is important, take it from somebody that’s been in business for many years and it’s not that we’re getting balance, we’re just opening up opportunities of becoming a better version of ourself. Come on. Yeah. Yeah. So thank you guys so much for being here and I look forward to us chatting again soon.
[00:54:58] Simon: Yeah, thank you for having us.
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