Kristina Mand-Lakhiani, co founder of Mindvalley, shares how to become flawesome with radical self acceptance. If you’ve ever felt burdened by perfectionism, pressured to be someone you’re not, and driven to live up to other people’s expectations even if it means concealing your true self, then this podcast episode is for you.
In this episode, Kristina talks about the concepts of perfectionism, flawesome, and self-acceptance. She shares with you her journey of self-discovery and how these concepts have helped her to become flawesome!
In her book “Becoming Flawesome: The Key to Living an Imperfectly Authentic Life” Kristina guides you through the beautiful process of radical self-acceptance, so you can embrace your flaws, quirks, and scars so find your way back to yourself.
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Myrna: You are the co-founder of MindValley with Vishen Lakiani. I love Vishen Lakiani I think that you guys do good work and I know the story because I’ve gone to several of his webinars and read his books. I know the story of how he came about to start MindValley and his journey. So let’s talk about you today, why did you begin this personal development company? What motivated and inspired you?
Kristina: I mean you know whether it’s the same as Vishen’s or not but what is what is the story behind Mindvalley? That question will require a little bit of a background, so the founder of Mindvalley is Vishen Lakiani and by the family name Lakiani you might guess we are related. We used to be married for 16 years, so when Vishen was starting MindValley it was back in 2003.
I had moved to New York, we got married in 2003. I had moved to New York from Europe and I was looking for a job and Vishen had a job and he had a side hustle which became MindValley. I usually say that I ended up in, personal growth, reluctantly and by accident and that’s absolutely true. I had nothing better to do but to help Vishen with his side business because he had a full-time job and we depended on his income as a family.
We depended on it so I thought it was the right thing to do, but at that time I would also say, I thought I ended up in, personal growth, reluctantly and obstinately because I was still planning to make my own career somewhere else. I started in the government working in a very different field from, personal growth, so it took years before I accepted my fate.
MindValley is now a top personal growth company
Myrna: I know Vishen’s story that his business that he had. I think it was doing websites. You said it was like a, side hustle, that’s amazing that the company for anybody that doesn’t know about MindValley it’s like a top 10 company in, personal growth, in the world.
Kristina: We have grown yes and we have changed since the beginning since 2003 so definitely it’s been quite a journey and yeah we do consider ourselves one of the biggest education companies in personal growth and transformation.
Myrna: All right so then you started in your personal journey and according to your personal growth journey I should say and according to your bio you got to work with some of the greats. I’m in the space you know so I know all these different people I love Michael Beckwick. I love his work. I love Bob Proctor and I don’t do a lot with Lisa Nichols because she basically teaches you how to be a professional speaker, but I know that you know she has done very well for herself.
So what is one of the greatest lessons you’ve learned from Michael Beckwith let’s just pick one or if you want to use one of the other ones that’s in your bio you know it’s so hard to be picking uh like one of the greatest lessons from any of the people.
Lesson of self acceptance from Michael Beckwith
Kristina: I probably learned from Michael Beckwith the lesson that I have learned would be a little bit reversed from what you would expect. I’ll give you a situation of course I’ve heard him speak and I’ve heard his teachings, but the lesson came in a different shape and form. So I started working in, personal growth, and transformation as an entrepreneur and a marketer initially so I got to know all these people as their partner in the sense because we were helping them to get their word out to to other people.
So I wasn’t ever their colleague in the sense that I wasn’t one of the authors. It happened much later at some point I re-invented myself and my life and it would be a completely different story, but some five six years ago I started going into becoming an author because I was ready. I had embraced, personal growth, and transformation and it was it was quite a few years ago.
I remember I was going on MindValley Stage and we have a very impressive stage and we had a huge audience probably one of my biggest at that time and I was following Michael Beckwith and a few other people and I remember being completely terrified because I felt, who am I to go on stage after all those people? I do actually mention Michael Beckwith in that story because he is such an energetic and such a strong speaker that when you listen to him you’re hooked. you’re just there and I have a very different style, so I remember going on stage and having this huge impostor syndrome thinking how can I compare.
From impostor syndrome to self acceptance
I can never be as good as Michael Beckwith speaking. I can never be as good as another speaker who was there who had built a massive company. I could never be as good as another speaker there who had written a bestselling book and was super famous. I was comparing myself faster and faster to all those great people and feeling smaller and smaller and smaller until I remembered the words of a friend of mine who said we are so hooked on the idea that we have this one talent that we are forgetting that we are multi-talented.
That actually helped me to suddenly realize that it is not in this one thing where I have to be the best in the world, but in the unique combination of things that make me who I am. That’s where probably the biggest value that I have for the world. Michael Beckwith was one person who taught me, self acceptance. There are people who are so much better, so much more accomplished than me in every single area, if I take them separately, but what gives me value is the combination of my works, of my unique features of the things that maybe I am ashamed of. That combination is what gives me my unique value and what gives me the right to be on stage with all those wonderful people.
Lisa Nichols helped me become Flawesome
Myrna: Lisa Nichols is a powerful speaker. I saw her quite recently, she’s awesome, but what I just love what you just said is that we all have this inferiority complex because you know we think that someone is is better than us but I love what he says that our combination is what makes us unique.
Kristina: We often think that our lessons come in very clear messages and of course Michael doesn’t teach that. He teaches, self acceptance, that is what I learned from that interaction and that’s interesting. You know Lisa Nichols for example, she’s wonderful in so many ways and she actually has taught me public speaking one-on-one including, self acceptance, of my accent and flaws.
She’s such a wonderful human being but the one thing I learned from her is one this is one saying that she occasionally says in some of her speeches.
The world has no need for your perfection
Conscious uncoupling after divorce
Myrna: So let’s talk about you, back to you now and some of the things that you bring to the table. One of the things you talk about is, hacking happiness, after, conscious uncoupling. You were married to Vishen for 16 years that’s a long time, in fact that’s how long I’ve been married to my current husband 16 years. you’re talking about, conscious uncoupling, hacking happiness.
Kristina: Well, conscious uncoupling, is actually a term coined by another of Mindvalley authors Catherine Woodward Thomas
For me and Vishen it was just a journey we chose to take when we decided to separate. Vishen had known Catherine by then and he had known about this concept so we did follow her teachings to a degree, but I think any kind of relationship is a product of these two people. So you can learn from other person how to be a good parent, how to have a happy marriage.
I think that every couple that uncouples consciously and couples according to Catherine Woodward Thomas has their own story and the other examples that I’ve seen. I don’t normally talk about relationships because it’s not my forte. I do talk about, hacking happiness, although not connected to uncoupling per se.
Hacking happiness: conscious uncoupling
I talk about, hacking happiness, as a choice, as a trainable skill as maybe a habit which is very contrary to a lot of ideas. I like to talk about happiness especially to very skeptical people because they always make you see things in a new light in a way. I do talk about happiness, but not in relation to uncoupling because I think in that aspect I’m still in the process. I mean we uncoupled four years ago and you might say that it’s long enough time, but we are in each other’s life’s a lot we grow children together.
We still have business together, we are friends, we do a lot of things together, so I think as long as we have each other in each other’s life it will be a constantly evolving relationship.
Myrna: Well at least you parted amicably. What I know about relationships is it’s very hard to, consciously uncouple, because it’s either you did something that hurt me and I don’t want anything to do with you. It’s very hard to say we are better separate than we are together and we’re gonna, consciously uncouple, and put our kids first. That term , consciously uncoupling, has become popular because you know the word that I heard before was, co-parenting.
Kristina: I would strongly recommend studying Catherine Thomas because she has the experience, she’s a psychotherapist who has been working with couples focusing on relationships. We do need to re-imagine the end of relationships. We have such a rigid approach to that relationship is only a success if it lasts, but that’s not the case. We have all witnessed relationships that maybe lasts a really long time but it’s dead inside.
Catherine suggests and I really love this idea is why don’t we judge the successful relationship not by the length of a relationship but by the extent that both people have maybe evolved or created things together.
Hacking Happiness: The Art of becoming Flawesome
Myrna: you also talk about how can we live by our own rules and walk in our fruit and um you know that’s basically our topic today, hacking happiness, and the Art of becoming flawsome. Tell us what that word means because I’m putting my own interpretation to it.
Kristina: I’m very reluctant to give definition of the word flawesome even in my book. My editor insisted that I have to add it. My book well it’s called Becoming flawesome. It is a book about, self acceptance, and finding your way back to you. Our flaws is just this necessary condition because when you find your way back to you, you will discover that probably you’re not that picture of perfection that you have been drawing in your head and aspiring for.
Become flawesome by accepting your flaws and practicing, self acceptance. Becoming flawesome is a personal experience and you are absolutely right it’s about embracing your flaws and being okay with them. It’s embracing your flaws, it’s learning to not just accept, but love yourself with your flaws, and maybe not even with the flaws, but because of them. Because every single facet of you makes you unique.
Even those things that you maybe are feeling ashamed about or don’t want to show to the world they are a part of you that makes you uniquely you and if you have the courage to go further and deeper, it is about about finding strengths in the things that you might have considered your flaws choosing them to become your blessing rather than your curse.
Conclusion: Your self acceptance journey
Yes as you were talking you know a lot of women including me.
Myrna: Let’s talk about your book, how did you come up with that title and what is it that you want the um readers to walk away?
Kristina: I hope that this book is going to be a companion on the journey back to you for every single reader. However many readers I’m going to get, that’s how many destinations this book will have. I don’t teach people, I don’t believe in teaching, I believe transformation happens when people are ready and who am I to teach anyone, but I am a companion, I have been through this journey. I ask a lot of questions. I hold the hand, so I do believe and hope that this book is everybody’s individual unique journey back to, self acceptance.
Myrna; How can our audience get a copy of your book and connect with you on social media. Let us know your website and your Instagram or your social media handles.
Kristina: My name is a little complicated, but the rest is easy so my name is Kristina Mand-Lakiani my website is www.kristinamand.com and then the book is slash book so it’s super easy. My handle for all all the social media Instagram Facebook is the same https://www.instagram.com/kristinamand/