The Light Watkins Show

200: From Adversity to Unstoppable Success: Lori Harder's Unlikely Story of Empowerment and Entrepreneurial Spirit

March 27, 2024 Light Watkins
200: From Adversity to Unstoppable Success: Lori Harder's Unlikely Story of Empowerment and Entrepreneurial Spirit
The Light Watkins Show
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The Light Watkins Show
200: From Adversity to Unstoppable Success: Lori Harder's Unlikely Story of Empowerment and Entrepreneurial Spirit
Mar 27, 2024
Light Watkins

In this episode week’s episode of The Light Watkins Show, host Light Watkins is in conversation with bestselling author, entrepreneur, and motivational speaker, Lori Harder. They dive deep into Lori's transformative journey, exploring the pivotal moments that shaped her life, from her upbringing in a strict religious community in Michigan to becoming a fitness champion, bestselling author, and successful entrepreneur. Lori shares the struggles and breakthroughs that led to her finding courage, motivation, and the power of creating meaningful connections.

Lori reveals the inspiration behind her bestselling book, "A Tribe Called Bliss," and discusses the importance of surrounding oneself with supportive communities and the impact of intentional friendships on personal growth. With her compelling stories of overcoming obstacles, embracing change, and the relentless pursuit of her dreams, Lori offers invaluable insights into the nonlinear path of personal development.

You will also learn about Lori's venture into creating Gloci, a unique health and wellness product, showcasing her entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to empowering others. Whether you're seeking motivation to take your own leaps of faith or interested in the intricacies of building and nurturing supportive networks, Lori's journey from childhood adventures in Michigan to empowering women entrepreneurs offers a riveting exploration of what it means to live courageously and authentically.

This episode is a must-listen for anyone looking to be inspired by the resilience and resourcefulness of a woman who has continuously reinvented herself, defying expectations and building a life centered around passion, purpose, and deep connections. Join Lori and Lewis for an inspiring conversation that will leave you ready to take your own bold steps forward.

Send us a text message. We'd love to hear from you!

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

In this episode week’s episode of The Light Watkins Show, host Light Watkins is in conversation with bestselling author, entrepreneur, and motivational speaker, Lori Harder. They dive deep into Lori's transformative journey, exploring the pivotal moments that shaped her life, from her upbringing in a strict religious community in Michigan to becoming a fitness champion, bestselling author, and successful entrepreneur. Lori shares the struggles and breakthroughs that led to her finding courage, motivation, and the power of creating meaningful connections.

Lori reveals the inspiration behind her bestselling book, "A Tribe Called Bliss," and discusses the importance of surrounding oneself with supportive communities and the impact of intentional friendships on personal growth. With her compelling stories of overcoming obstacles, embracing change, and the relentless pursuit of her dreams, Lori offers invaluable insights into the nonlinear path of personal development.

You will also learn about Lori's venture into creating Gloci, a unique health and wellness product, showcasing her entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to empowering others. Whether you're seeking motivation to take your own leaps of faith or interested in the intricacies of building and nurturing supportive networks, Lori's journey from childhood adventures in Michigan to empowering women entrepreneurs offers a riveting exploration of what it means to live courageously and authentically.

This episode is a must-listen for anyone looking to be inspired by the resilience and resourcefulness of a woman who has continuously reinvented herself, defying expectations and building a life centered around passion, purpose, and deep connections. Join Lori and Lewis for an inspiring conversation that will leave you ready to take your own bold steps forward.

Send us a text message. We'd love to hear from you!

LH: “I was working at that LA fitness, making 6 per 30 minute session. So when we lost everything, we were about 300, 000 in debt and living in the Midwest, which at the time that was like 3 million. Like, that was, So intense. So I'm doing the math, right? What did I just tell you? Made 6 per 30 minute session. I'm doing the math to try to figure out how we're going to get out of debt. And I'm like whoa. I'm going to be like 80 time we can figure this out and get our life back together. And the interesting thing about the time is, my husband did really well, but. When the crash happened, there wasn't like another job for him in that industry. The whole industry tanked. So we were sitting there going, what do we do? How do we make this money back? We were living way beyond our means. We were super young. Really tough lesson to learn, but my God, I'm so grateful. I learned it and went through all of it because if I wouldn't have had this moment where it was like, I have to step up and do something because I just watched my husband lose his identity. This was before we did any personal development, who he was, was so wrapped up in what he did. And so I'm watching a man crumble in front of me. He feels like he can't provide. He feels like a loser. He feels devastated. It's the first time in his life where he doesn't know what the heck he's going to do with his life. And he's a college dropout. So he's got this story going on in his head as well. That was a moment for me where I actually we have a moment. We were walking around our neighborhood and it's like this Lake that we always walked around. And. I just looked at him and I remember everything in my body, just felt like it changed. And I was like, this will never happen again.” 


Hey friend, welcome back to the Light Watkins Show. I'm Light Watkins and I have conversations with ordinary folks just like you and me who've taken extraordinary leaps of faith in the direction of their path, their purpose, or what they've identified as their mission in life. And in doing so, they've been able to positively impact and inspire the lives of many other people who've either heard about their story or who've witnessed them in action or people who've directly benefited from their work.

And the goal is to expose you to as many people as possible who found their path and to humanize them. And after hearing story after story, hopefully you give yourself permission to move further in the direction of whatever feels like your path and your purpose. Because what you'll see is that anyone who does that has to overcome many of the same obstacles that you might be dealing with right now.

And this week, I'm in conversation with a serial entrepreneur, a top podcast host and a bestselling author. Her name is Lori Harder. Lori's life work is to teach women through her books and her podcast and her courses and events, how to connect with they're like minded tribes, how to find their purpose and how to take the big leap of faith into the life of their dreams.

Lori went from being an in debt high school dropout to multimillionaire. Her journey ranges from going door to door recruiting for the religion that she was raised in to being homeschooled, to helping her dad out on kitchen and bathroom installations. Lori was a barista for a while, a waitress, a network marketer, a personal trainer. She opened her own gym and she participated in fitness competitions. She became a world fitness champion. 

Lori was an 11 time cover model and author, a podcast host, an entrepreneur and educator, and now a founder and CEO. So Lori has done a lot obviously. She's had many careers. Lots of deep life experience, which means she has a lot of wisdom to share with us.

And in this episode, we talk about the early days growing up in upper Michigan. We talk about panic attacks, the feeling of imposter syndrome, getting married early, creating your tribe, how Lori went from making $6 an hour as as a physical trainer to making a million dollars within the year. Why your network is your net worth, how you should ask people for help when you are in need, how to empower your friends, how to support your family and much, much more.

I'm excited for this one and I think you are going to fall in love with Lori's story. So without further ado, I'm honored to introduce you to the life story of Ms. Lori Harder.

[00:04:36] LW: Lori Harder, thank you so much for coming onto my podcast. I've been doing a deep dive into your body of work and into all of the different pivots that you've taken in your life and I'm really excited about of learning how you found the courage and the inspiration and the motivation to take all of these leaps of faith in your life and.

I was reading the foreword of your book, A Tribe Called Bliss, and Gabby Bernstein wrote that for you. I heard in an interview, you talk about how you would bring a lot of people to her events. I thought that was a really cool thing that you were very intentional about doing, because you have so many people who look at a Gabby Bernstein and they think to themselves, oh, I want to be friends with her and yet you're not really able to connect with people who are operating at that level because you don't really have much to offer when you're in those rooms, in terms of what they're looking for in terms of what their biggest concerns are. And so there's just not that natural connection, and I think that's something that in the motivational world, people hear a lot you are the sum total of your five closest friends. And if you want to be at a different level, you have to go and be around different types of people. And I've always taken issue with that, actually. It's not that I don't think there's some truth to that, but I think it's more of a nonlinear process. And I think it's less about just having new friendships and more about providing more value to whoever's around you. And when you do that, you can change your situation from the inside out. 

So anyway, I don't really even have a question. I just wanted to point that out as we get started in our interview, because that's how I love to approach these kinds of conversations. And I want to start back to the Marquette days in upper Michigan and just talk about growing up as a young person and what was your favorite toy or activity from those early days? 

[00:06:45] LH: Such a fun question. First of all, thank you for having me on your show. I already love talking to you cause you're a podcaster and I'm like getting lost in you talking too. So so fun. Okay. I was an outdoor kid so I loved my bike. I also loved Barbies and My Little Ponies and playing dress up. So I definitely was a very imaginative kid. I also loved putting on concerts and plays and having a captive audience that couldn't move anywhere like my parents. But those were all I would say that was my favorite thing was like just creating different worlds, whether it was like through dress up or I loved my bike so much because it felt like an adventure especially when you live in the woods, you create your own fun.

[00:07:33] LW: Sounds like just different outlets for imagination and definitely. That's so cool. 

I know you grew up in a very religious family, but what were some of the indoctrinations that you remember as a child that your parents would echo? 

[00:07:50] LH: I think all of us, we have good ones, and then we have bad ones or ones that we turn into different stories. And I would say the overarching themes of my life were to, some of the great ones where you’re meant to work really hard, and that's a good thing. And having good work ethic is really important. It's something that I'm so grateful to my parents and my dad for like, as a teenager or even younger, we would go sweep his shop. So he made kitchens and bathrooms and we became helpers at really young ages. We'd go down on a Saturday or Sunday and we'd have to go sweep a shop. Or even as a teenager, I would go as a helper to install kitchens and bathrooms. So I learned how to do a lot of things that made me very capable. So that was an overarching theme was like, you work hard and you be good to people. And I remember my dad, so my dad was an orphan. He was adopted at the age of 13. He was raised in a boy's orphanage. And he we joke that he’s trapped as a teenage boy to this day like he just really operates that way. And so, growing up, he would give people the shirt off of his back, quite literally he would do this and we were driving to church one day and he picks up a hitchhiker and puts them in the back seat with me and my sister and we're like this is not safe, dad. This is crazy. 

He would always have, like, he was that person who, even if it didn't make sense to everyone outside, it made sense to him to be a really good person to other people. He would hire people who were sometimes, other people wouldn't hire because maybe they were. They did jail time or something. These are real stories and he would hire them and then bring them home to the dinner and we'd be at the dinner table getting these incredible, crazy stories because these are the experiences my dad wanted to give those people a chance. And there were a lot of times it worked out in his favor and sometimes it didn't. Sometimes he'd go down to a shop and things were gone and they were gone. But other times he got really incredible humans that other people would have overlooked.

I think that all of these things were woven throughout my life and my mother was also very nurturing mom growing up and taught us, like, how to really take care of a household which I'm very grateful for. I would say the other themes that maybe were not positive or that I had to relearn throughout my life was like, we are not. You will never be rich. Like you will work your butt off your whole life and it is just hard. And money's hard to come by. It's hard to keep business is hard. Like people screw you. So that was definitely also a theme in our life. 

[00:10:37] LW: Did your dad ever talk about his or wanting to find his birth family or anything like that? Or not really, he just it was okay. 

[00:10:43] LH: We actually knew who they were. So I did. I'm trying to think if I ever met them. I think I met my grandmother once, but he was taken away from his home, I think at four years old because they were alcoholics. 

[00:10:56] LW: Got it. Got it. Got it. Got it. Okay. So, talk about the religion. I've heard you mentioned this religion a lot of times. Can you just give a little detail into what that was about? 

[00:11:10] LH: I don't necessarily mention, I don't really love to mention just the denomination because it still works for my family, but it did not work for me. We would go to church three times a week. We did not celebrate holidays or birthdays, which just makes it really interesting in a school environment. And I also wasn't allowed to hang out with anyone outside of the religion at all. So it took a very small town and it made it even smaller. Actually, the reason I talk about it so much is because it's interesting. It's not like I've done so much work around any sort of trauma that may have happened. It's great and I know that this happens in so many different religions and places. But the reason that I talk about it is because that was my life. That particular group of people, that environment, the fact that I couldn't talk to anyone outside of that group, that was like my entire world. And so when I decided at 18 years old that I was going to leave that process nearly felt like it killed me because I had to leave everybody that I loved. I had to go against something that, everybody believed.

I technically wasn't supposed to, if you leave it in certain ways, you're risking that maybe you don't get to talk to people that you love because you could be disassociated or like, totally removed from all of those people. So I use everything that I went through with that and that story for when people have to pivot into their next evolution, because we are often leaving everything that we've ever known, and we are feeling either rejected, or we're feeling rejection, or we're feeling fear, or we're feeling like we're going to lose everything.

It feels like you're going to die because of our wiring for survival. We are very tribal and when you leave one group of people to go, maybe pursue something or chase a big dream, or, be the first person in your family to go and do something new that maybe they don't think is possible for you. It can feel like you're afraid to leave because maybe you won't survive. Like we are hardwired to want to survive and stay in that tribe. So when we leave, it can feel like you're risking everything. And so that's really translated for me and how I teach people, because I understand that it feels like to them.

They might be risking everything, whether it's close relationships, or their families, or their loved ones, or maybe they won't get invited back to Christmas, or they'll be rejected, or everything is changing for them. How do you support that process? And I've spent my life trying to figure that out.

[00:13:47] LW: Right. And you were also homeschooled, right? You asked your parents to homeschool you. 

[00:13:54] LH: I was homeschooled through high school. So in 8th grade, everyone who was in my congregation, I would say 70% of the kids were being homeschooled. And I also was starting to experience panic attacks for the first time in my life at about age 13. I think it was after watching my mom have one, I immediately started having them like a week later. I don't know what that was. I don't know how that's learned, but all of a sudden it was like, I must have them too. And and my mom was having them because we didn't know this at the time, but my mom had just had a baby.

So my brother and I are 14 years difference, about 13 and a half years difference. And she was really experiencing postpartum depression, which at the time that was not talked about at all. And we didn't know necessarily what was going on with her because it was like this different version of my mother. But for me, the role in the family that I had taken was keep the peace and I wanted to just try to make everybody's life better at the time. And I thought that if I could just take things on that we could make things better, that I could make things better. I'm guessing that a lot of people have had this experience where you feel like, maybe you are the peacekeeper in the family or in your life or that maybe the things going on, you could try to fix.

And I think at a young age, it was like, oh, my gosh, what can I do to help? And you don't really know how to help. But yeah, at the time, I think this is where I've tracked back where I think that they came from along with some other things. But yes, sorry. I just got off course from the question.

[00:15:24] LW: No, no, no. So the homeschooling that's something that everybody or a lot of people in that community we're doing in high school. Yeah. And your yes. And 

[00:15:33] LH: that combined with the panic attacks. I was like, okay, please let me homeschool. Please let me homeschool. So it actually ended up working out. Well, because my well, for the family, my mom went back to work and I ended up for those four years, taking care of my brother while she worked. So at 14 years old, I stayed home, babysat, they thought I was homeschooling. I was not doing any schoolwork whatsoever, never really did schoolwork at all. And that's yeah, that's a big part of my story as well. Is that my math education pretty much stops at 8th grade. So that was a huge shame that I carried for a really long time out into the world is like, oh, my God, what people don't know is that I didn't graduate. What people don't know is that I really have this education level of 8th grade or what people don't know. So, I really just started sharing that like, 3 years ago. 

[00:16:27] LW: Wow.

[00:16:29] LH: I told my husband a year into our marriage, 

[00:16:32] LW: You didn't tell him you graduated? You didn't graduate high school until a year after you got married. I guess most people just assume that the person there with at least graduated from high school.

[00:16:42] LH: That's how much I thought I wouldn't be like worthy of love as if people found out because I felt that dumb and ashamed. And the more that I share this story, the more I have people who did not graduate and they're like, I feel the same exact way. I don't share it. I don't tell anybody. It held me back from going for so many jobs or different things that I want to do. And I think if I can alleviate that from anyone. It's like there are so many different ways to get an education what you're good in now or to focus on what you know you're good at. And also in the past, it wasn't really about that. There are different ways of learning and some people really struggle in certain areas. And sometimes you're more emotionally intelligent rather than IQ. So, I'm grateful for these conversations that people are having now. 

[00:17:28] LW: Right. And one of the reasons why you requested this is because people were making fun of you, right? In school. 

[00:17:34] LH: Yeah. That was another reason too, is because it, I think there's a few reasons. I was an overweight kid, but also in the religion, it's just different when you're different, it makes you an easy target. And because I was never allowed to hang out with anyone. And if there were art projects or any holiday, anything, or dances or anything, those were all things that I was excluded from. So if the kid next to me was making a Christmas tree, I was making a heart or they would remove me from the room and I'd go sit somewhere else. Or if there were cupcakes being passed for birthdays, I'd have to pass on them or if the pledge of allegiance was being done, I had to sit while they all stood. So it just, it brings attention to you that you're just you're the weirdo. So yeah, it was always just little things being made fun of all the time. 

[00:18:20] LW: Okay. So talk about going to your friend's place when you took that trip for a week or so, and you went to your friend's place and you learned about different lifestyles from the one that you were experiencing.

[00:18:32] LH: So this is the first time I really learned that your environment is stronger than your willpower. And so because I was an overweight kid. We were an overweight family. We were always trying to lose weight. We would actually go on diets as a family. Like we're doing it this time. We're all going to lose weight. Cause we were all struggling. We all wanted to be more fit. We all wanted to feel better. We all wanted to lose weight. And this was my whole family. So, my mom has five sisters and the whole family really struggled with their weight was how we identified.

And it was like they would say the bakers were just overweight. We're always overweight. Like it's coming for you just wait. And so this is what I heard growing up. And so I had already been on multiple diets. I had started exercising at this time and I was just became a teenager. So 13 years old and in this religion, if you want to hang out with other people, like there weren't a lot of girls my age, I would have to go and meet them from other congregations. So that meant the nearest ones were a few hours away. So I ended up making these other girlfriends in a place that was a few hours away. And that meant if I wanted to hang out, you stayed for the week because your parents were going to drive you. And if we're going to drive this far, you got to stay a while.

So I ended up being able to stay for an entire week at this new friend's house. And the first night we get there, I'm like so addicted to food, right? It's my joy. It's everything. It's what we bond over. I ask her hey, where's your snack drawer because I'm feeling snacky at the time. And she's like, what do you mean?

And I'm like, where do you keep all your snacks? Because I wanted some chips and Twizzlers and whatever. And she's like, we don't have a snack drawer, but we have like some apples. And I remember thinking an apple, like how rude. Gross! I was not a kid who ate fruit let's just say or anything green. Everything was beige or everything was sweet or everything was a snack all of the time. And so that was my realization of like, okay, so I don't think we're going to get any snacks on this trip and we ate great. Like, we ate very healthy. We ate normal meals. We did breakfast, lunch and dinner. Mom cooked and we spent the week playing outside and being really busy. And I found myself not even thinking about food because we were just so active and it wasn't around, it wasn't around to be had, it wasn't out on the counter all day, it wasn't snacks throughout the day and all these different planned things. We came home and there were always baked goods, when we came inside from playing or whatever it was. And so I ended up going home and I got on the scale because I'm like, I feel like my clothes are looser. I had lost five pounds in a week. I had never lost weight in any of the time that I had been trying to do it, because my nutrition was so off. It's like, you can exercise all you want, but you can't out train a bad diet, you really cannot do it. And so this was the moment where I was like, Oh my God, my house, like the place I live in, the people around me are keeping me from the goal, and that's a really tough place to be when we wake up, and we realized that maybe it's our loved ones who have the same habits as us that we can't necessarily blame them. But it is harder when it is constantly something that is in your face. 

I remember feeling super torn because I did come home feeling a little bit upset. Like, how am I going to do this now? It's hard to unknow what, it's hard to unsee what you just learned where I'm like, we are not living a healthy lifestyle. And as much as I tried to talk about that and change, I couldn't actually get the change that I wanted until I moved out of my house. And this raises a really tough question for people. What happens when it's our loved ones? What happens if it's an environment we can't leave? And those are also questions that I have started to learn to create answers for. So we can go into that as well if you want. 

[00:22:32] LW: This is really the first time you're breaking free from your tribe and you're not even sure if you're going to be able to have a new tribe. Right? So what didn't, about breaking free from that tribe that you that would have helped had you known this at that young age when you were, I believe you went to Madison, Wisconsin or something like that after work, right?

[00:22:54] LH: Yeah, what do I wish I could go back and tell myself? Okay. Interestingly enough, I started to figure out one of the small key points. So I'll share that. Once I turned 16, and I got my license, I had the realization like, okay, well, I could go get a license, a gym membership, and I can go get a job where I leave and get in different environments.

So that the main one that I'm in, I start creating time away from that particular one and other places where maybe I feel more supported or other places where I can start to focus on this other goal that I have, or start creating these friendships with other people who feel the same way as I do.

So that's what I started to do. The second I turned 16, I and got my license. I got a gym membership where I started to go every day and I would spend extra time there. And then I also got a job so that I was spending time there. And I noticed that those, I was starting to feel better. I had a little more control because you don't need full control, especially in the beginning. You just need to start having these other places where you feel the environment can start matching who you want to be. So, the environment, meaning, like, maybe it's a more positive environment. Maybe it is people who also have the same goal as you, maybe it's people who believe a little bit more like what you think that you believe. So these are the things that I probably would have dove into even more. 

And when I turned 18, I would have really remembered that your environment creates who you are, because then I moved in with some people who were in a great environment for me. And I definitely got the result of not being around great people.

[00:24:39] LW: What made you go to the gym? Why'd you go join a gym? 

[00:24:41] LH: I was so into fitness. I don't know. I saw people on it. So I was really into watching gymnasts. Like it lit me up. I was like, oh my gosh, gymnasts are like, they must feel so powerful. Like they just looked powerful. I thought if you looked that way, you must be confident.

And I told you in the beginning that I had this like, almost imaginative performer, that is definitely, I am like I don't know what I wanted to be, but I did know like anything performance made me feel some kind of way. And I wanted to have the ability to make other people feel the way that I did.

It was like, it tapped me into a version of me that I didn't know could exist, but I could see visions of it. And I thought that if I looked that way and felt that way, that I could make other people know that they could transform too. So I knew I wanted to be some sort of something that could help people transform, but also like, some form of performer so I was really drawn to gymnast and then also I saw something at a young age. I think at the time it was called like Fitness America. It was like women doing fitness routines on television. And that was it for me. I was like, my mind was blown. I didn't know who these women were, but they were like my celebrities.

So I just started wanting to work out as well. And also for weight loss, I just was like, what do we do? Do we exercise? So I think I might've learned that from my family or older sister. 

[00:26:08] LW: Did you know what you were doing when you first started going to the gym, or how did you figure it out? 

[00:26:13] LH: No, I didn't know what I was doing. I walked around aimlessly. Trying to do that, feeling where you're like, trying not to let people know that you're reading the machine and like what it says to do on it. So you're like, drinking your water and being really awkward. No. So that was totally me. And then I decided to go to the library. Remember those? 

I went to the library and I looked up like different books and magazines on working out. So what I would do is I would photocopy the workouts. It was like 10 cents a copy at the was it the Peterson library? I can't remember. I think so. 10 cents a copy, I remember. And I would photocopy these different workouts from, they didn't have women's women's magazines or books at the time. It was all like Men's Fitness. So I got a binder and I would punch the three holes, the three ring binders. And I put it in a binder and I separated it by like, arms, shoulders, legs, abs. And I would just go and put together these workouts from these different magazines and books. And then I created a calendar that I wanted to try to get at least 3 check marks of a workout every single week.

And I kept it up on my closet door. And I was trying to create a habit and what I didn't realize I was doing is like visually putting something there to remind me of like, go make yourself proud, go do something, don't forget to do this. So I had these like reminders all over my binder would be out, my calendar would be up. And that's how that whole thing started. 

[00:27:46] LW: And how are you making a living for yourself? And who are your role models at the time? 

[00:27:51] LH: What age group? 

[00:27:53] LW: When you were first starting to work out? 

[00:27:55] LH: Okay. So I'm like 16. So I was working at a coffee shop. And I actually loved it because that I loved coffee and I also really loved the woman who owned it. It was a woman who owned it. How cool is that? You just made me realize that I didn't even think of that. But it was a woman business owner and she was really amazing. She spoke life into me. So because I had good work ethic, I did a lot of different things like went above and beyond.

And she just really was so really grateful for that. And I think that felt so good to make somebody proud, to get those words of affirmation from somebody, especially even outside of your family. So that's what I was doing. I would say mentors. I didn't really know. I didn't understand what a mentor was. I had never, I don't think I'd ever even heard that word. But I think the people in magazines and these. Women who were on TV, like, I remember one of them was named Stacey Cravens and she did a fitness routine dressed up like a Dalmatian. And she just, I'll never forget it. I was like, I'm going to be like Stacey Cravens.

[00:28:59] LW: All right, so then when you first started seeing results, you were 16 when you started, but how old were you when you first started seeing fitness results? Like, you really started to see your body transform. 

[00:29:11] LH: This is interesting because I saw, I definitely felt stronger. I definitely started to realize, like, I'm not gaining weight anymore. I was fit, but I had carried some extra weight. So, it's like, I couldn't see all the muscles. I think I started to do that maybe in my, I think it was my early 20s when I started to understand what how big of a role nutrition played in it. And I didn't, I wasn't able to really change that until I moved out of the house and then got out of that little 18 to 20 year old phase, I would say I really saw a difference when I started leading a more stable life, got married, I got married at 24 and he was into fitness as well.

So when I got into a routine where I could eat better, I was sleeping. I wasn't partying all the time. We still were a bit, but I wasn't partying all the time. And I would say that's when I really noticed all of the hard work start to show because I had the muscle. I knew how to build the muscle, my binder really paid off because I knew what I was doing with that. But it wasn't until I could really control my environment more and dial in the nutrition that I started to see results. 

[00:30:19] LW: You hear a lot of women especially say, Oh, I don't want to work out with weights because I don't want my arms to get bigger. And it's like, well, you have to be very intentional in order to have that level of transformation. What are some of the things that you experienced or that you implemented in those days in your earliest twenties, where you started to see those results with diet wise, as well as just, some very basic things in case someone's listening to this and they also want to get on top of their physical health and just get into better shape. What are some of the, what are some of the things that that people should pay attention to? 

[00:30:56] LH: Definitely eating more protein and I'm trying to pay attention to getting more vegetables. Green vegetables are great. I learned the theory of crowding out because at first, crowding out means to try to load your plate with more healthy food than unhealthy food and more healthy food. Leafy greens and more meat and things like that, like lean proteins than the unhealthy stuff. And especially in the beginning, I think one of the things that I had to look at was how is this food making me feel? Because food was joy. This was really hard for me because my whole life, food was so easy equated with joy that I felt like when I started trying to eat really healthy, I felt like I had nothing to look forward to. 

And so it started a, this was a long process of learning how to not binge eat because I lived in upper Michigan and then Wisconsin and then Minnesota. And at the time, it's a culture of food. It is a culture of food. If you make friends who are going out to eat, you're probably drinking a lot. If you're having fun on the weekends, you're probably having a lot of cocktails. You're going to games. You're eating a lot of what I call beige food, a lot of carbs. And this is like pretty much the enemy of trying to lose weight or be fit or feel good.

And so, working to start with small things like it's very hard to go from 0 to eating really good and getting those results that you want, because so much of our emotions are tied with food. So I think having the grace in the beginning to say, okay, I'm going to actually just start small, like 3 days out of the week on. Let's just say Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday, I am going to try to only have salads at night. Like I'm gonna have a salad with a really big piece of protein, whatever that looks like. And I'm going to start there to see if I can try to make this a habit and know that I can still eat what I want on these particular days. 

So I think we always try to rush for our results in the beginning where ultimately what we want to do is know that the result will come if you focus on changing a habit and making that habit last.

And the more that I would try to skip to the result, the more that I would go into like this cycle of binging. And so I wish I could go back and tell myself, hey, go slower because you're going to get that result so much faster than trying to go fast. And this is even something I do to this day. Like I've got different things, cause I still love to go have a glass of wine with my husband, but now we're like, okay, two nights a week, we have a glass of wine. So you better pick your nights on, whatever you think about, like, I actually look out at the week because I need these parameters and these tracks for myself. 

I've just always been this way with anything. I need to know when I'm working out. I need to know what I'm eating. I need to know, I create these things that still give me a lot of pleasure and joy, but I also know that I can derail myself if I don't have parameters and I think that we do this, I think the most successful people have their routines set up and they know themselves and they know what they need.

And this goes into setting up my environment and saying, like. What do I need? What do I need? Because I'm going to become whatever I place myself in. 

[00:34:14] LW: Okay so you started entering into fitness competitions. You're carrying around fitness magazines, you're aspiring to be on the cover of some of these magazines.

So just give us a little montage of how all that happens in I guess you can also talk about 2008 and what happened during that time and what inspired you to step full into coaching people as well? 

[00:34:39] LH: Okay. So fitness competitions. I told you I was enamored as a young girl with whatever they were doing. I didn't even really know what was going on. But as I started reading these different fitness magazines I started learning cause they would do like updates on these competitions and then women's. Fitness magazine started coming out as well. So I started getting all of those. And so I was watching MTV. Do you remember MTV True Life? 

[00:35:04] LW: True Life. I definitely watched a lot of MTV back in those days. What was True Life? Was that a reality show? 

[00:35:12] LH: So True Life was a reality show where they would take like a mentor or an expert in the field and take a normal Joe and like be able to turn them into whatever they wanted in like a short amount of time.

So I had just stumbled upon this MTV true life stumbled. Who am I kidding? I watched MTV like a maniac watching MTV and this woman is on there and she is it's true life. I want to be a fitness competitor or whatever. Title they had. And I was like, oh my God, I want to do this. And she took this woman who was a doctor who like never really trained or wasn't into fitness at all.

And she was going to turn her into a fitness competitor in a short amount of time. So I'm like, who is this woman that she turned this normal everyday woman into a fitness competitor in a very short amount of time. And I had already worked out, I had already like done all of the work. And I was like, if I just could meet this woman, she could probably.

We do the same thing for me, so we didn't have Instagram or anything to go look people up. You guys, it was like, how do I get in touch with this woman? And so a couple of weeks later, I'm on the stair climber at the gym and I'm in this meeting. I'm reading a magazine called Oxygen Magazine. And in the corner, there's a little article that says Kathy Savage, Savage Camp, learn how to compete, pose, all the things. The woman's name was Kathy Savage. I run off the climber and I go over to my husband and I go, I'm doing this. I'm going, I don't really know what the heck it's going to be, but we're going to get this ticket and I'm going to go. I had never flown by myself at this point. And I think I'm 24 or 25. And I had never done anything that was like scary like this. So I go get the ticket. I get the flight. I go to Boston. I go to this fitness camp and I am surrounded by these super outgoing, gorgeous women. Mind you, I've never been an athlete. I was never an athlete because I wasn't in school. I wasn't in environments like this at all with a bunch of other people. I was so intimidated. I was having, like, the absolute I don't belong here, I can't believe I came here. This is not for me. Like, I'm too scared. I was having major anxiety flare ups. I'm like, sitting way in the back and I think it was on day 2.

She has us do this exercise where you buy these clear, like giant platforms, they call them stripper shoes back in the day. And you're supposed to buy them for this camp because you're going to do a stage walk while you're there. So I have these platforms that I've never worn that I put on that day. And she has us do the, our best pageant walk with tons of confidence in front of everyone, for everyone to like judge and help you out. And this is what we're doing on day two, mind you, I have never even been in front of people. So I was like, Okay. We're going to do this and then we're never going to do this again. Like this is a disaster. I'm like so freaked out and I muster up all my courage. I'm shaking like a leaf. I do the best pageant walk that I can possibly do. And I'm thinking that this is going horrible. And she says one thing to me, she says, Oh, it's going to make me cry. Like she says, you were made for this. And in that moment, I was just like, Oh, my God, like to have a mentor or somebody when you're feeling like that breathe one sentence into you,  it's like the awareness now of what we do with our words for other people, like, why is it bothering me so much? Sorry. That's so great. But that was one of the most powerful moments of my life to do something so scary and have somebody see you and that little mantra became my mantra, like, for my whole life of we not only get to decide if what people say about us is true or not, but we have the power to change everyone's lives with one little word or one little sentence. And so to recognize people, which is why I love that you have a podcast, it's like, there's so much power there to be able to do that. So that's where the fitness competitions came from.

I took that one mantra and just ran with it. When I had a bad day, when I didn't feel good, I'm like, one person believes I was made for this and it's like I started competing and competed for four years. I actually had a longer career than most people. I didn't win right away like a lot of the girls, if you were going to win, you popped off on year like two or three. And so all the women that I had started with had been winning and doing all these things and going on to do covers. And I was not there yet. And so year four a couple of different things happen that I can tell you. I ended up, I'll tell you the end result and I'll tell you what I think shifted on year four, I ended up setting a world record where I ended up winning Ms. Bikini America, Ms. Bikini Universe, and Ms. Figure America all in one year. And that has never, ever happened in, in the industry. And I think what happened was two things on year 3, I had a couple moments of realization that maybe the stream would never happen.

And I remember standing in front of my vision board and feeling like, if this doesn't happen, then I'm like, I'm not validated. Who am I? This is my identity. I'm no one. I wanted validation. So incredibly bad. And I had all these magazines up on my vision board and had that moment where I'm like, Oh my God, what if this doesn't happen? I threw myself on the bed and literally had an adult temper tantrum. I don't know if you've ever had one of those, but I was bawling my eyes out. Nobody was there to watch. And unfortunately when no one's there to watch, it gets old, fast because you're having this full on like hysterical moment and it's a little exhausting and you're winding down. And when I wound down from all those emotions, I had this question to myself. Why do you want this? What do you think this is going to get for you in your life? And the answer was, I want to be a leader. I want to make people feel the way that I felt watching these women. I want to create these communities. I think I have a story that I want to share. And I said to myself, do I need this magazine to do that? What if this magazine is the middleman and I can cut out the middleman and go directly to creating these communities. And I started out of my gym. I was like, I don't need this magazine to start like a weekend seminar for women. I don't need this magazine to start these like women's groups that I can do. I don't need this magazine to start talking on videos about how I feel or start these cooking shows. I don't need this to do that. Why don't I just start that? And so I started that and it started to really grow in that for about a year. I really worked hard on creating these communities. And all of a sudden I'm like happy in what I'm doing because I decided I didn't need that validation first to do that. 

The second part was that I got so immersed into teaching to help people do stage walks and to help people compete in pageantry and to help people change their lives. Like, I really immersed myself in that by the time I got on that stage in year 4, I was so just happy in my life and confident in where I was at. And I think teaching not, I don't think teaching makes you better at what you're doing. It is like the ultimate learning is teaching. So, you teach what you need the most and that's what I needed. I needed more stage presence. I needed more confidence. And the more that I taught it, the more I embodied it because watching other people and me wanting it so bad for them to really helped me just like embody what that looked like and also be a leader and so that was the 1st time also that I started really visualizing for, like, the entire year.

And I visualized myself pretty, I think a few months before I allowed myself to start visualizing myself winning and I had never let myself do that before. I had never actually, I don't know if I thought that it would be like, it would hurt too much if I didn't win again, but I started walking around already thinking that I had won and I am not kidding you when I say the night before I texted my mentor and I was like, I don't know what Kathy Savage.

And I said, dear, I don't know what it is, but I've already won. I'm like, I literally know it. I can see it. I'm like, even if it doesn't happen, it is already literally happened in my head. And that was the next day I went on to set two of those records in one day. 

[00:43:45] LW: I have so many questions. What do you think Kathy saw in you when you first stepped out on those platform shoes that made her say that thing to you that she said you were made for this. You were born for this. 

[00:43:59] LH: Oh, man. I don't know. I just like, okay, let me think. 

[00:44:03] LW: Does she elaborate later on this as she became more of your mentor? 

[00:44:08] LH: Yeah, I think she just said, what she has said is she's like, you just had like an equality of leadership. Like you just, I could just tell you were like a leader. And so I don't know how she could tell that she also asked me if I, you know, if we ate hey where we were from, she was joking, but like, simultaneously, she saw this girl, like super small town who probably had potential or really wanted it. I don't know. I don't know what it was, but that's what she said.

[00:44:43] LW: Was Savage her real last name or did she take on the stage name? 

[00:44:47] LH: Yep. That's her real last name. 

[00:44:49] LW: I love that. Kathy Savage.

Okay. So were you reporting back home to the old tribe? What was going on and how you were all excited about this, about getting in shape and competing? And if so, what was their reaction?

[00:45:03] LH: At this point I was, my husband was my biggest supporter for sure. My mother in law was also a huge supporter. Like, she was probably the person who was like, You can do this. You absolutely like you're made for this as well. She was giving me that, especially once I got home and told her. My family wasn't there because they're still in that religion, those types of accolades aren't the most important to them, and I understand that. So I wasn't getting much by way of that, nor was I necessarily sharing it. So maybe I would have gotten more, but I'm not sure. So, it wasn't something I was sharing with a lot of other people. Now, I was sharing, in the very beginning, even when I was starting to like, when I started to go to the fitness camp, I had a job where I worked at the front desk of a hair salon.

And I remember I was still kind of in that lifestyle where I was healthy, but we were going out a lot. I was young, so the girls at the salon, we were all going out and having cocktails, like, once or twice a week. I remember sharing with them that I was like, I'm like, I'm going to go to this camp. I'm going to do these fitness competitions. And they were all like, yeah, right? Like, you're never going to be able to do that. And so I think you just get it. You're going to get all different opinions from different parts of your life. And when I got back from that camp, I really started to make changes with who I was hanging out with. And I actually ended up quitting that job. And I went and got a training job at LA fitness around that time. And then very quickly after that, I had opened my gym. 

[00:46:35] LW: This is also around the mortgage crisis, right? Where you're you and your husband lost everything pretty much. 

[00:46:40] LH: Yes, 2008. So he was the main breadwinner for sure. I was working at that LA fitness, making $6 per 30 minute session. So when we lost everything, we were about $300,000 in debt, which at the time and living in the Midwest, that was like 3 million. That was so intense. And so I'm doing the math, right? What did I just tell you? Made $6 per 30 minute session. I'm doing the math to try to figure out how we're going to get out of debt. And I'm like whoa like, I'm going to be like 80 by the time we can figure this out and get our life back together. And the interesting thing about the time is, my husband did really well, but when the crash happened, there wasn't like another job for him in that industry. The whole industry tanked. So we were sitting there going, what do we do? How do we make this money back? We were living way beyond our means. We were super young. Really tough lesson to learn, but my God, I'm so grateful. I learned it and went through all of it because if I wouldn't have had this moment where it was like, I have to step up and do something because I just watched my husband like lose his identity. This was before we did any personal development. He was so wrapped up in what he did. And so I'm watching a man crumble in front of me. He feels like he can't provide. He feels like a loser. He feels devastated. It's the first time in his life where he doesn't know what the heck he's going to do with his life. And he's a college dropout so he's got this story going on in his head as well. And so that was a moment for me where I actually we have a moment. We were walking around our neighborhood and it's like this lake that we always walked around. And I just looked at him and I remember everything in my body, just like felt like it changed. And I was like, this will never happen again. We will never be in this situation. We will never be back at this point. 

Mind you, my parents went bankrupt as a teenager. So this was like reliving this all over again. And I was like, I am never going through this again whatever that looks like. And so, that is when I think what happened at that point is I just we started opening up to creative ideas and until you can start asking, like, okay, why, why did this happen for us? How is this happening for us? It was like, well, guess what? It's forcing me to face my fear that I did not graduate. And I'm going to go have to try to figure this out. What can I do? What new skillset can I do? Like, how can I make more money? How can I help this problem? And I think asking that over and over just opened me up to solutions that I would have never been open to.

And so I ended up realizing I'm never going to make up enough money working for another person at LA fitness. And I started telling people about my dream of opening my own studio. So when you start sharing with people what you want to do, they have answers for you. So I would tell my clients this all the time at LA fitness. And I'm like, oh, this is such a no like to tell your people, like, oh, I have this dream of opening my own gym. So I tell this woman who is. She's 26 at the time. She's older than me. She opened her own chiropractics clinic and it was right down the street from this LA fitness that I worked at. And she's like, hey, I know that you said you want to open your own gym. I have a completely unfinished basement. You can do whatever you want with it. You can train me for free for the first few months and I'll give it to you rent free. We can start talking in about three to six months and see where you're at. I said, yes, I was down in that unfinished basement and about two weeks after that. And it was like, the lights were hanging down the insulation, all these things. I told all my clients. I'm like, oh, we're remodeling. This is going to be all done in a year. I had no money to remodel. I had 0 intentions of remodeling. I was like, we're just winging it. I went to Walmart, got those little strappy things, that you could work out with. We got like the piece together things on the floor that you put down for padding. Like, it looked terrible, but I just. I was like, all ego aside, because mind you, we're at rock bottom so I'm like going to do anything. 

And from that point, I started training people, which was amazing. And got incredible clients right away. Just because I was so willing to hustle and ask every, single person that I came in contact with, if they wanted to train with me. I'd let them train for free for a little bit and then offer them a package. I was so willing to figure out what the heck this looked like. And then the next thing that I got into was network marketing because one of my clients did network marketing. And I said no to her for six months, but she got such an incredible result. She lost 90 pounds in under a year. And I was like, wait, I know I'm a good trainer, but I'm not that good. She just was doing so amazing. And six months into it, she kept trying to get me to do it. And I was like, absolutely not. People hate network marketing. I'm going to get cast out from all my friends. No way. This is awful. And it was that six month mark where she brought a check to the gym that she had made and she showed me the check and I'm like, oh, my God, that is so much money. And she goes, yeah, it's for one week. And I said, I am network marketing, teach me how to do it. That is when she became my mentor. And in one year, a little over one year, we went from zero to making over a million dollars in that network marketing company. So now, there was a lot of hustle there, but I had my back against the wall and I learned the vehicle and I was so willing to put all my ego aside and get, have her as a mentor. And I literally talked to her every single day. Like how do I do this? How do I do this? How do I do this? 

[00:52:21] LW: So what are a few things that would help one succeed in network marketing because so many people try and then you'd make a million dollars doing it. What were you doing differently that most people aren't doing?

[00:52:33] LH: So there were a couple of things I had set up that I think is important that other people either need to work to have. And I think whenever you're so… You can substitute network marketing for, okay, you have a product company. Now you can substitute network marketing for, I want to launch an e course. I want to launch a podcast, whatever. So some of the things that I had already had built was I didn't even realize that I was building up a big audience on Facebook. And when I say big, I think at my max, it was like 30,000 people or something. But I was talking every day on Facebook, so meaning I would just go write a paragraph about what I was going through in my life and it was real and it was super raw. Just like, hey, do you struggle with this too? Here's where I'm at. And I would say, maybe a book I was reading or I take a sentence or a blurb or I would post a quote, but I was consistent every single day. I would say where I was at. What I was building and what I was doing, and I always tried to be super positive.

So I had a lot of people following me for the positivity stuff. And so when I, and also because I was in fitness now, mind you, at this point, I had not won anything that all happened the year after this all happened. So I was competing and people did look at me like, oh, she's a fit person. So they, it was like fitness and inspiration. And so I started talking on the page about, like, and not even I never said the name of the company. Once it was always like, different things I was using or doing everything for me happened in the DM. So I would say, before you do anything, I think it's really important to start building an audience based off of what you either think that you want to do, or, of course, tied to who you authentically are and how you want to show up in the world.

So for me, the fact that I've always loved sharing vulnerably with where I'm at and then also showing what I'm doing and documenting the journey, it's been much easier for me to take in things that are really changing my life and plug them into what I'm doing. I think it's very important to focus on building an audience with whatever you want to do. So, whether that's starting from scratch with a podcast starting from scratch online, but being consistent and trying to figure out what your best modality is to document your journey. So I think that's a really vital piece for anyone that wants to be successful in network marketing or in a business or a course or anything like that.

[00:54:58] LW: So you have the network marketing thing going in the background. Is that requiring a lot of your work, a lot of your time during a regular week? Or what were you spending most of your time doing these days? 

[00:55:12] LH: So I was training and doing the network marketing and yes, I was at some point, I was doing 8 calls a day on top of regular training at my studio. Some would be early in the morning. Some would be late at night. It we were doing weekend events, probably every weekend. I was hosting an event where people could come and learn about it where I would come and talk about it, or I do a workout and then an opportunity meeting after it. So I'd say hey, come to the workout and stay for learning about this product that I'm doing. That was, that's what I did for not just that year. I really put in that work for like six years. 

[00:55:50] LW: And you wrote about in your book how you felt a bit lonely, even though you were technically successful. You had a great body. You looked amazing. People would project confidence onto you because of the way you looked and you're living the lifestyle now that people aspire to. So how did you first recognize that something was off and what did you do about it? 

[00:56:13] LH: I recognize something was off because I felt really drained all the time, but I was around people all of the time. And I was starting to look at this gift that I knew that I had as like, being able to share a message. It started to feel like a curse and, like I knew it wasn't, and I needed to figure out what that was. And a couple things made me start to notice that. And honestly, I think the first big one was I, you had mentioned Gabby Bernstein wrote the foreword to my book.

I also coached with her when she used to coach way back in the day. And I think maybe I was one of her last. And I remember on one of the coaching calls, I said to her, I'm like, I'm with all of these people I'm doing these workshops and these events and I want to do more of them. I'm not really feeling fulfilled yet. I'm not really feeling connected. I think it's because I need a bigger audience. So, I think it's because I want to be doing this on a larger scale. And she had asked me, like, what are you doing? You're connecting all these people. You're doing these events where you help women connect. And, it was like, the main thing I was doing at these events was really helping women break out into groups and not only do personal development work, but connect with each other really deeply. And she's like, where do you do that for yourself? Like, where do you have that group of friends where you're getting poured into? And because I think I had shared some other personal stuff where I was going, and I was new to LA at the time, and I was going on all of these friend dates where I noticed that. I would pour into them the whole time and leave and feel so empty and like, wait, I'm meeting all these people, but I'm so tired. I'm like some of the dates that I would leave I'm like, wait, I should have charged for that. That was a lot and I had a couple crazy realizations. So she asked me that and I was like, I'm not really doing that.

And I'm a little scared of doing that, because that means that they're probably maybe ahead of me. And I don't know if I believe that I'm worthy for those people to be friends with those people. And then the other thing was, I would go on these friend dates in Los Angeles and I would sit down with these women and I'd say, hey, how are you? And you know, they would answer and then they'd say, hey, how are you doing, Lori? And I would say, oh, I'm fine, but I wanted to talk about them and help them. And so even if I wasn't fine, and even if I was lonely, and even if I did have challenges that I was overcoming, I would deflect it and I would ask them how they were and want to help them because I was getting all of my validation from if I could help you or not.

And I noticed that if I did not feel like I could help them, I didn't feel validated. I actually felt quite terrible about myself. And so the thing about friendships is you don't really become someone's friend until you actually rely on people and need them and share vulnerably with where you're at and let them help you.

And so all of these realizations and then also being on stage once and watching all these breakouts of these women in groups of four and me going, I don't have that. Like, they're all crying and hugging. And I'm like, oh, I didn't create this for myself. I'm doing it for everyone else again and I'm avoiding it.

From that point started seeking out women who were either, ahead of me or who could, I don't even know it wasn't even ahead of me. It was just like, I started being more vulnerable in my life and also seeking out people who were ahead of me on the journey. And that changed everything because I actually started connecting with people and so that's really what the book Is about is these ins and outs and the complexities of relationships.

And the reason we avoid the very things that can make us be incredible friends with people is because we're, we're so afraid for so many reasons, rejection, our past stories. And we just keep carrying those over and over. So the book is like, really about how to get past those and create real relationships in your life that support where you want to go as well.

[01:00:11] LW: And you said that 3 to 4 people would be the ideal number. What? Why? Three to four more than that in the beginning, especially if you're starting to create something like this for yourself where you're checking in or you have accountability. So, in the book I actually give you a framework of like, every other week.

[01:00:29] LH: Creating this group of 3 to 4 people where you spend an hour together, sharing where you're at and getting feedback and connecting over maybe where you want to go or support around your goals and the reason 3 or 4 is because more is really hard to arrange more that's like more schedules. It's really hard to get people on the more, the more schedules that are in there, the more challenging it is.

And if you want to keep up with something, if there's a lot more people, that's going to take more time to get through and it's going to be a lot more time consuming. So, if you have 3 to 4 people, you can manage that in about an hour if you want to create this group. 

[01:01:05] LW: So, what are you up to now?

Nowadays, you've done the physical, competition thing. You were successful in network marketing thing. You wrote the book. You have this amazing podcast. What are you excited about now? 

[01:01:18] LH: Oh, thank you for all that. I am really excited about it. I've created a physical product. It's called Gloci. It's a skin routine you can drink. And I have always, you know, I have a network marketing background. I love products. I'm such a huge consumer at any given time. I probably have four beverages on my desk. And I am also like a toddler who, if they want to drink their water, I need it flavored. So I when I created this product I love rituals and routines as you can probably hear throughout my story. I've always liked those parameters and those things that I can grab on to that make me feel better. That's like a moment for yourself. So, the reason that I created it was because one day I was drinking all of these hydration products. And I thought, what if this could do even more for me? And I just realized I'm drinking really expensive salt. So I was like, I would love to help out all of my girlfriends who were all like entrepreneurs and also really into personal development and speaking and all the things. And I would love to help support them. And also what if I could get female investors? So they also owned a part of the company and we all just learned this together and supported each other and got it out in the world. So, that is what Gloci is. It's a female owned, operated, invested in company. It has 54 female investors behind it. We're all very excited to be a part of something. And it is a powder that you put into your water that is for your skin and your gut. 

[01:02:40] LW: I love that. Is it set up like a network marketing type of thing where people can really get in there and help you sell and also make a lot of money for themselves as well? 

[01:02:50] LH: So I took the idea of that and we create an ambassador program.

So it's not necessarily where you're building teams. So it's very different on that end. But I think network marketing has changed so much that I don't necessarily know if people love to be building in certain styles anymore. So that's why I wanted to go with the ambassador route where yes, they can absolutely get paid because women are natural like we're natural salespeople for things we love. I can't tell you like the amount of like fitness clothes I have sold and not got paid for, or you name it. Like I sell things because I love, if I love them, I'm like, it doesn't need, you don't even need to pay me. You need to buy this product because it changed my life.

So I think that the more women's businesses that we can start to attach these incredible plans to, I think the more you're going to see just amazing products get out into the world because I created this because I wanted something better. And I think more women are going to start creating things because they just wanted a better alternative to something.

[01:03:54] LW: What are like a couple of things that women in general could be doing differently to bring more meaning into their life? I don't know if that's too broad of a question, but as someone who's a very much a female influencer, and you just talked about how women are natural salespeople if you are if someone does identify as that, what's something that they can do to take that a bit further in a meaningful way? I know building a tribe. It adds some meaning to your life, probably getting in shape could as well. Is there something else maybe regarding mindset?

[01:04:30] LH: I think there's a few things I think in each thing that I did, I realized that, we're meaning making machines and I think the power of meaning is the meaning you decide to place on anything. So I think that we can make anything that we're doing means something important. And at the end of the day, I think that's all that there is is what did you make it mean? Like, what did you make it mean? And I say that in terms of, this company carries such deep meaning for me, because when I first started to understand that I was the creator of my own abundance and that I could create money, it freed me to really become who I wanted to be. And the fact that I knew that I could make money and not be stressed out and have to do other things that maybe I didn't necessarily want to do for the rest of my life. I think that freed me to understand that, like when you make money, you can then talk about whatever you want, you can make that message, whatever message that is, you have the freedom to go out there and create platforms for that message. And so for me, the fact that I get to have investors and hopefully, if all goes well, I get to help make them money.

Also with the ambassador program, I get to help make them money because money it's not just money. It's freedom of choice. It's freedom of what you do with your time. It's freedom of who you do it with. And to me, that means that I'm freeing someone from the feeling of not living a life of who they truly are and I lived that life and it doesn't matter how it looks on the outside. If you are not living into who you truly are, you feel like you're trapped and you feel imprisoned and you, it's really hard to think outside of that box when you are not feeling like you're living like yourself. 

[01:06:20] LW: And you've also said that your network is your net worth and you raised 2 million for Gloci. Can you just give us a little bit of a insight on how you did that? 

[01:06:30] LH: Oh, my goodness. So I did not know how to raise money at all. And it really, like, it was one of the things that kept me from thinking I could ever start a product company, even though I love products. 

[01:06:41] LW: What made you think you needed to raise money? It sounds like you have enough money to invest?

[01:06:45] LH: Well in that. So there's a couple different reasons that one of the reasons was number one, I wanted to get women to own a part of a company to see, like, the inside of it. So I'm really taking them along for the ride. Like, they're learning as we go.

A lot of my investors were first-time investors. Some were not at all. But number one, I think, Chris and I have invested in over 20 companies now, and I'm grateful for their companies because that is an opportunity where they take on all the risk where, of course, it's very high risk to invest. You guys, many of them do not make it, but they are taking on the risk. I get to be a part of the opportunity to potentially maybe make more money and I believe in investing in different companies and in different things to grow your money. So I want to not only teach women how to invest and what that looks like, but if they want to start their company, great. So there were so many different things going on with that. So the other thing is, there's a lot to be said about not using your cash to create something. And then also I raised money, which was the 2 million. It was I thought I was going to possibly eternally be raising money because this wasn't this company before I raised money for a different company.

Now, it's all the same investors. We have pivoted because I lost all of my margins during COVID. But this was a nonalcoholic rosé company with questions on the back of the can to help them go deeper. And it was a a sparkling lighter rosé company because I loved to have wine, but I wanted it to be lighter and I also wanted women to be connecting. So that's what that was raised for. So there's a lot of different reasons why I raised money. 

[01:08:24] LW: Got it. How are you defining success these days, Lori? 

[01:08:28] LH: If I'm having fun.

[01:08:30] LW: If you're having fun. 

[01:08:31] LH: It's really that's it. That's end of that is period. End of story. Do I feel like I have friends that I can text at any time? Can I send really funny, weird, vulnerable voice notes to at least 5 people and get something back? Yeah. Am I going and able to, like, be active or snowboard or wakeboard or play pickleball? Like, can I do that in the next couple months? Like, can I look at my calendar and know that I can make that happen? Yeah. Do I feel connected in my family and friendships? Am I have so fun for me? Like, that's when I'm leading like a very lighthearted, peaceful, fun life. And I do feel that way right now, but I also feel like it's because even though I'm under a lot of stress, but I've learned how to compartmentalize that stress a lot better. Like, stress and a happy life can exist in the same highway. I can just have really good tools to know how to manage the stress. 

[01:09:28] LW: Well, I feel like, one of the things that you're doing now, that's a part of your calling is you're helping women, entrepreneurs, and really just people in general, imagine better possibilities for themselves, so the way it started off in the woods for Michigan is what you embodied now. And you've very much exemplified that in your work and it's been an honor to, to be able to talk to you and just unpack those parts of your journey. I know there's so much more there too. So maybe we'll have to do a part two at some point, but I hope I get a chance to also get it get to connect with you in person at some point, maybe the next time I'm in Southern California and you're having an event or something or anything that I can support you in because I think you're just you think you're the real deal. I think you're the real deal. I'm excited that you came on and to share your message with my audience. 

[01:10:19] LH: Thank you. I don't know why you're making me cry today, but it's great. I appreciate it. You're just a deep listener. So thank you so much, which is why you're great at this. So I appreciate you. 

[01:10:28] LW: Absolutely. Absolutely.


Thank you for tuning into my interview with Lori Harder. You can follow Lori on the socials @LoriHarder, and of course I'll put links to everything that Lori and I discussed in the show notes, which you can find at If you enjoyed my conversation with Lori, you found it inspiring and you're thinking to yourself, I'd love to hear you interview someone like Richard Branson or Oprah Winfrey or Barack Obama or whoever, shoot me an email with your guest suggestions, If you know these people personally and you want to make a warm introduction, I'm open to that as well. And in addition to that, one very simple and easy way that you can directly help me get that guest onto my show, especially if it's a really big guest is to leave me a review. That's why you hear podcast hosts like me always saying to people like you, Hey, rate and review the show if you like it. It's because that's how a lot of bigger guests will gauge whether or not they are going to come on to the podcast. Just looking at the podcast page and saying, Oh, this podcast has several hundred or thousand reviews.

So to leave a review, all you do is you look at your screen, you click on the name of the show, the light Watkins show, and you scroll down past those first few episodes and you'll see a space with five blank stars. Just click the star all the way on the right. If you would like to leave me a five star rating.

If you're feeling inspired to go the extra mile since you're there, go ahead and write a one line review about what you appreciate that we're doing with this podcast. And that's it. It goes such a long way. You have no idea in getting guests on the show and I can use all the help I can get. So thank you very much in advance for that.

You can also watch these interviews on my YouTube channel. So if you want to see what Lori Harder looks like and her personality and all that on video, you can check that out. If you go to YouTube and just search The Light Watkins Show, you'll see the whole playlist there. 

I also post the raw unedited version of my podcast in The Happiness Insiders online community. So what you just heard was the edited version, which means we took out all the ands and the ums and the butts and the false starts in the chit chat in the beginning and the end. If you are the type who likes to hear all of that, then you want to join my online community at And not only will you get to access all of the unedited versions of the podcast, but you'll also have access to a bunch of personal development challenges and masterclasses for becoming the best version of you. 

All right. I look forward to hopefully seeing you back here next week with another story about somebody just like me, just like you taking a leap of faith in the direction of their purpose. And until then, keep trusting your intuition, keep following your heart, keep taking those leaps of faith, and if no one's told you recently that they believe in you, I believe in you. Thank you so much. Sending you lots of love and have a great day.

Finding Purpose and Overcoming Obstacles
Childhood, Beliefs, and Personal Growth
Breaking Free From Negative Environments
Journey to Fitness Success
Fitness Transformation and Competition Journey
Empowering Mentor Leads to Success
Overcoming Financial Crisis Through Hustle
Navigating Relationships and Vulnerability
Empowering Female Entrepreneurs and Investors
Online Community for Personal Development