A lot of people know what their passion is but they have no idea how to express it, and hence they get stuck. There are passions that are tied to external and physical things that are all temporary, and people are often caught up in the feeling of constantly being behind their dreams and passion. This usually happens when you develop a mindset that what is around you is the truth you need to respond to. Bri Seeley helps people get out of that mindset and practice their truth to show up fully in life. She shows people that the ability to love oneself is more meaningful than living in a big beautiful house.
Practice Your Truth And Express Your Passion with Bri Seeley
You know the truth will set you free. It is not always the easiest thing to handle. It may frustrate you, it may anger you or it may embarrass you, but it will set you free. The most important truth is the truth about ourselves. There is an old saying that goes something like this, “When times are good, you’re not as good as you think you are, but when times are bad, you’re not as bad as you think you are either.” That’s when the truth becomes even more important. I am going to be focusing on accountability. That’s because keeping ourselves accountable is hard, but it gets easier when we have some help. You’re about to get a massive dose of truth and accountability from my next guest. She’s been featured on NBC Today Show, Forbes Magazine, Inc. Magazine, PBS, and other very cool and important venues. She received the Outstanding Small Business Award from the Los Angeles Mayor’s Office in 2016. Welcome, Bri Seeley, to the show.
Mitch, thank you so much.
Tell me a little bit about how you found yourself moving towards being in business.
The first twenty-some years of my “business experience,” I didn’t know that that’s what it was. I completely rejected being an entrepreneur. I said for the longest time, “My mom’s one of those. I see what she does and I’m good, I don’t want to do that.” Looking back everything that I did, even starting from the age of five, has built up to lead me to be exactly where I am. My mom ran a college bookstore when I was little and I would go to work with her because she was a single mom. I would hang out at work with her and I ended up learning how to use the cash register. When she had new college students come in, I would be the one to teach them. I was training my mom’s employees when I was five. Fast forward to when I’m fifteen, she buys a store in the small town I live in and I start helping her with inventory, with employees, with training, with all these other things. The summers between college, I would be the one to run the majority of the business. I was the one there day-to-day figuring out all the things about making the business happen.
Fast forward to being 24, I was returning back to the States from having gotten my master’s degree abroad. Both my degrees are in fashion design. I was living in a small community where I didn’t have the opportunity to flex my creative muscles and so I was like, “I’ll do this little thing on the side.” o I became an accidental entrepreneur where I started a fashion business, and little by little, year after year, the business kept growing. Before I knew it, I was at Magic, which is the largest trade show for fashion. I was on the stage winning Emerging Designer of the Year at Phoenix Fashion Week. I was picked up by Zappos. I was on LA Fashion Week stage. I was dressing Toni Braxton. I stopped at some point about a little over three years ago and was like, “This is not fun anymore. I’m not into it. I’m not feeling lit up. I’m not being fulfilled the way that I was or the reason that I was when I started the business.” About three years ago, I was in meditation and got a clear, “Just stop.”
My passion is photography. I travel all over the world. I photograph. You can go to MitchRussoTravels.com and see my work. I’m on this trip and there’s a gentleman standing next to me. Our tripods are side by side, and we’re photographing the most beautiful sunset ever in Death Valley. We’ve been talking all day, so I know what he did and what he does. I turned to him and I said, “I have to ask you a question, ‘What does it feel like growing up as a child prodigy? Being able to fill concert halls of thousands of people with your piano playing, traveling through Europe as a teenager, being hailed as one of the most incredible new concert pianists in the world and then going on to the career that you had? It sounds like you’ve had a blessed life’” He turns to me and he goes, “I didn’t get to choose that life.” I said, “What do you mean?” He goes, “My parents noticed that I could play the piano as a little boy, and they pushed me through all of that even though I was Magna Cum Laude graduate of Berkley Performance Center and Juilliard Music in New York.” He never chose his profession, yet he blindly went into it, poured himself into it because his mom and dad and the world told him that’s what he should do. It sounds interesting because you’ve found yourself in a similar position being as good as you were at and as the accolades piled up, you said that you had this realization, “This isn’t me.”
What I realized was that I got into fashion to create. I got into fashion to design and to bring beauty to the world and to truly help women begin to reconnect with their femininity and with what it means to be a woman. As I got deeper and deeper into the business, it was like, “This isn’t what I like.” Designing was 1% of my life and everything else was the business and getting the press and dealing with manufacturers, all of the things that go into running a business. I got so far away from the reason that I started that I wasn’t there anymore. My heart wasn’t in it and I didn’t care but I still cared about why I got into it. That was still lighting me up. The universe gifted me the opportunity to let go of how I was fulfilling that why and step into a whole new way of fulfilling that why and my passion, my purpose, and my underlying burning desire didn’t change. Everything about why I did fashion is still the same as everything about why I am where I am right now: writing, coaching, speaking, training and teaching. It’s interesting that I pivoted. On the outside, it looks like everything changed but on the inside, nothing changed.
Many of us get to the point where we have a passion, but we don’t know how to express it or we have a passion and we express it and we think it’s working and then we get there and it’s unfulfilled. I had a problem with drugs growing up and it wasn’t until I went through rehab that I was able to completely eliminate drugs from my life and live a healthy life. They told me I needed four things in order to be happy; I needed a car, an apartment, a job, and a girlfriend. I got the girlfriend, the car, the apartment, and the job. A month or two go by and I had this burning question in my mind, “Is that all there is?” That question haunted me for months and months and that led me find out who I was. Tell me about who you were once you knew what your passion was and found a way to express it in a different way than you had before.
One of the biggest things I’ve learned is that the external stuff will always be temporary. The car, the job, the girlfriend, the house are all temporary. You could get a car today, it could be gone tomorrow. Get a girlfriend today, she could be gone tomorrow. Get a job today, it could be gone tomorrow. The only thing that is ever permanent through the entirety of any of our lives is ourselves. The thing that has changed and allowed me to feel fulfilled is not even the coaching. It’s not how I execute my gifts, it is that I have developed this relationship with myself and I honor myself and who I am so deeply. I get to teach other people to do that. This is not an end process. This will continue to unfold and deepen through every day for the rest of my life, but the more that I can get to know who I am and more that I can learn how to fill up my own cup, the less I’ll be asking that question. It’s the same for anyone. The more that I’ve found a way to fulfill myself, the less I look for those things. I would love to have a man in my life and I’m so open to him coming whenever he’s ready to show up in my life and I’m not waiting for him to feel fulfilled. I’m not waiting to get new clients to validate who I am in the world. I have an amazing, lovely, beautiful home and it means nothing about who I am in the world. It’s the inner stuff that is so much more important. It’s that relationship with yourself. It’s your ability to love yourself. It’s your own fulfillment of yourself. Those are the things that will help you to stop asking those questions of, “Is this it?”
We all come from a place where the world has put us in a position where if we don’t perform, we don’t eat. If we don’t exceed performance of last year and the year before, we don’t move forward in our lives. If we don’t show up and show up stronger than we did last year, then we fall backwards. How do people, from your perspective, get out of that place where they’re constantly feeling like they’re right behind where they should be and can never quite get there?
I have a daily practice and it’s in that daily practice where I get to remind myself the truth about who I am. My truth is, “Maybe right now, I don’t have as many clients as I would like to have and it doesn’t mean I’m a failure.” I wrote a book where my energy is being poured and funneled into this beautiful manuscript that had 2,000 downloads within the first week. I can choose to look at my shortcomings, I can choose to look at the fact that I would like more clients, and they have not yet shown up or I get to choose to look at what my truth is. In my daily practice, every day I get to remind myself what a badass I am and how amazing it is that even on the days where I don’t know how it’s going to happen, I’m just human.
We all have the magic of the universe at our fingertips, but as a human, I don’t get to control or force or manipulate that. I got to trust that it’s all going to show up and that it’s all going to fall into place. I get to take inspired action to help that along, but I’m doing everything that I need to be doing. I’m showing up the way that I need to be showing up every day. I’m filling my cup. I’m loving myself. I’m taking care of nourishing my heart and my soul and my body. The results come after that. The results will only ever come after that. They don’t come first. My book is about taking leaps of faith and so often, people want the results before they’ll commit. There’s that saying that, “I’ll believe it when I see it,” and that’s wrong. It’s in the wrong order.
It’s the opposite as Wayne Dyer has pointed out many years ago. What we’re talking about here is what I call mindset. Mindset is something that people can shift. Mindset is not permanent. Even what people would identify as a bad attitude is not permanent. The other thing that causes these things is a reflection and that reflection is of our past. Usually, it’s based on comparing ourselves to others instead of comparing ourselves to ourselves of the last year or the last month or the last week. From my perspective, mindset can shift by staying focused on today, by staying in the present moment, by understanding that there is an invisible force that will conspire to move us forward if we believe that that invisible force is there to help and not hurt.
This is why I have a daily practice. I have that time carved, nonnegotiable, every single day to work on my mindset, to fill up my heart, to remind me of my truth, to move my physical body and take care of myself. That’s one of my biggest tips ever for anyone. Develop a daily practice where you can implement this mindset, where you can be in the present moment, where you can remind yourself of your truth, because otherwise, life always gets in the way.
You can’t pay attention to the stuff that gets in the way because if that disturbs your daily practice and your daily routines, then you get thrown off balance.
I love that you brought up accountability. I used to teach manifestation very heavily and then I started realizing, “That’s all the external stuff. I don’t want to be teaching people to feel good when they manifest a car, or money, or whatever. They need to be feeling good first. All that external stuff will come.” I do teach a lot of accountability. I teach a lot of habit-building and it’s the unsexy stuff. You have to show up every day and work on your mindset. You have to show up every day and remind yourself of the truth because, otherwise, your current physical reality will start to become so overwhelming that you start to believe that that is the truth. That’s when problems happen because then, if you’re constantly responding to what’s in front of you, then you’re not able to create what it is that you want, and it’s in that daily practice where you get to create instead of respond.
I love the fact that if you stay in the present moment and you focus on your strengths and you stay focused on growing who you are as a person by constantly learning and constantly growing, then the best will show up for you and there’s an element of the title of your book, Permission to Leap that’s going to happen. Let’s get to brass tacks here because this is a practical show. We’re here to make money, so I want to know, if my audience were your client, how would we start? What would you do? Where would they shift? Let’s give them some very practical tips. Give us practical, achievable things that I can put into practice.
Other than developing a daily practice, the second technique that I recommend for people is visualization. I take it a step further. Our brains are amazing. They are, one, concurrently amazing, and two, very outdated. We need a software update. The way that our brains work is that by us visualizing doing something, that area of our brain that lights up when we’re actually doing that thing lights up when we think about doing it. What does that mean? If you go out and you are rock climbing, the certain area of your brain gets engaged. If you’re sitting on your bed and you were to think about going rock climbing, literally the same area of your brain gets engaged. Your brain cannot process the difference between you doing a thing and you thinking about a thing. The more that you think about a thing, the more it becomes normalized in your brain.
You said a lot of your audience is trying to start a business or have a side hustle. If we were to think about doing something big and scary and audacious, like straight up quitting your job and jumping 100% into your side hustle, that’s terrifying because that’s out of the norm. That’s a big, scary, audacious thing. You can condition your brain to start believing that that’s normal by using a visualization practice. You can visualize, “What is it like for me to be 100% employed by myself? What does it look like for me to be a boss?” What do all these little intricacies of whatever it is that you’re desiring look like? That’s the first step, it is getting clear on what is it that you want. I always recommend not to get too specific because the more specific you get, the less the universe is able to deliver. Oftentimes the way that we think our vision is going to come shows up in a way that’s completely different than we thought. By being so specific, it can only come in this one way. You’re eliminating probably a million other possible ways that the same thing could come to you. You want to know what you want, and you want to leave it open to how it shows up. Because the universe will surprise you with all sorts of stuff, cool magic stuff, that you otherwise would deny yourself of if you were being too specific. Figure out what you want and get clear on that.
The next step is where I take it a step further. It’s one thing to think about your vision. It’s a whole different thing entirely to feel into your vision. The best way in the world to manifest is not to simply think about it. Take the secret, for example. The secret talks about the red car. If you think about the red car, you get the red car. This is why I stopped teaching manifestation. It’s not about the red car. Why do you want the red car? What are the feelings that it elicits within you? Is it a status thing? Is it the feeling of driving down the freeway with the top down, feeling the wind through your hair? Is it the feeling of freedom? What’s that underlying drive that’s even motivating you to want that car in the first place? The more that you can, one, see yourself driving that car and two, feel into the underlying reasons behind why you want that car, that’s where the alignment happens. It’s the feeling.
As I was writing the book, I was talking to one of my clients and she’s like, “It’s less of a visualization and more of a feel-ization.” I’ve dubbed it, “You want to feel into your visualization.” You want to see it because there’s brain chemistry that happens and you want to feel into it as well. You want to experience it. You want to close your eyes and truly experience the sensation of driving that car, that freedom, that status, that whatever it is, and allow yourself to go to that place. The more that you can consistently go to that place, the quicker your physical world is going to transform before your eyes.
You got to remember that your brain is very smart. You’re very smart and you know if you’re lying to yourself. If you think your lying to yourself, you will discard this entire process or even don’t pay attention to incredible stuff that Bri just said. I want you to put that in your mind. You’re not walking around saying, “I have a red car,” and then you shift your eyes and go, “No, I don’t. I don’t have a red car.” This is a lie and you don’t want to do that. It’s not so much the car, it’s the feeling of the car, it’s the feeling of being prosperous. You could feel prosperous no matter how much money you have and that feeling of prosperity leads to, over time, acting prosperous, like you are prosperous. I don’t know if you’ve heard of the book, You Too Can Be Prosperous. This book is absolutely one of my favorite books because it discusses the mindset. I’m not a Bible student. The book does go into a bit of justifying everything he says through the work of Jesus Christ. That’s great, but from my perspective, all of what you’re saying comes down to this, focus on what you want, understand that it could be yours if you simply keep it in mind, and then materialize it in the real world through your effort.
You don’t get things by thinking about them. You don’t get them by sitting and saying, “They’ll come to me.” No, you get off your butt and you go get them. If you don’t go get them, you can’t have them.” You can tell I am a little bit passionate about this. I am because I was the guy sitting on my butt at one point, it didn’t last very long, wondering why they weren’t showing up and then I made them show up. It doesn’t matter whether it’s easy. It’s probably not going to be. You’re going to have all the problems and encounter all of the difficulties that life has for you, but those are tests. Get through the tests. This is the way I think about it. It’s taken me a long time to truly see it this way, but a nice way of saying it is that your gifts are hidden inside your fear. You move towards your fear and once you get through it, your gifts will appear.
It’s all about when you say yes to that fear, when you say yes to taking that leap, when you give yourself permission to leap, you’re going to go through these stages of things. A lot of people look at taking a leap of faith and it’s like this big external show of something. A leap of faith is more of an internal thing. It’s the mindset. It’s the inner alignment. It’s the visualization. It’s the shift. It’s getting over your fears. It’s all of that stuff. The book talks about all of that and the tests that you’re going to go through. Before I moved to LA, my mom came to visit me, and she was like, “You shouldn’t move to LA. You’re my baby girl. I don’t want you moving to the big city.” I heard that, and I was like, “It’s a sign that the universe doesn’t want me going. I better stay where I am,” and it wasn’t a sign. It was a test of my commitment and moving to LA has been hands down one of the best things I ever did in my life. Had I listened to that and been, “The universe doesn’t want me to go,” who knows where I’d be right now? I don’t think I’d be here having written a book and speaking to you and all these other things. Now that I’ve gone through it enough, I know what it looks like, what these tests look like, how they show up, and that’s exactly why I wrote the book because I see so many people being like, “This is a sign,” and I’m like, “It’s not a sign.” Your fear does not mean you shouldn’t move forward. In fact, it means you should move forward and here’s why.
Here you are, you’re in LA, you clearly see what your mission is and you’re coming from your true purpose. You said earlier that you’re trying to get some clients. How have you gotten clients as of right now? How do you acquire a client list if you haven’t yet built one? As one who’s already put several clients through your program, tell us how you got those clients.
Boiling it down to the heart of it is two things. One, service. You have to serve before you get clients. I read the book, The Go-Giver, which is brilliant. We have this idea of being a go-getter where we go out and we get all these things. The energy of the go-giver is you go out and you serve. Last year, I got the opportunity to serve over 3,000 women in 90 days and I made more money and more clients in that period of time than I had a decade of being a business owner.
Let’s give some examples of giving and service. What were those examples? What do they look like?
The way that I did that was that I started a Facebook group, so this ties into my second thing and that’s intuition. I was meditating one day and got a clear, “Start a Facebook group and do a seven-day training.” I was like, “What am I training? What am I teaching? What am I doing?” It was in starting that training that I got to serve 1,200 women within the first week and then the group kept growing and growing. I did a seven-day training where I led these women through my process of manifesting and the women were getting results immediately. I had one woman like, “I was trying to manifest money and out of the blue got this call from this person who wanted to pay me $1,000 to update their website and wanted to pay me another $1,000 to do this other thing. I made $3,000 in half an hour by literally doing your training.” I was like, “Of course you did.” By showing up and by serving and by showing people the power that’s within them, the results they can get, the things that they can experience, how they can easily create, a lot of the women were taken deeper, like “How can I learn more? What can I do?” It was an easy way. It was easy because they had already seen the power of working with me and applying the knowledge that I had. By leading with service, they were naturally drawn into wanting to work with me.
Another example would be if you are teaching something or if you are coaching or consulting in a certain type of business or space, go speak, go volunteer to speak anywhere you can, find a venue, even if it’s twelve people in a room. Those twelve people could potentially be ten new clients. Go do things that help others, that’s what you’re saying. It’s no guarantee and you’re not doing it for that purpose. Do it from your heart, do it to serve, and let what happens happens. Even if the first time, second or third time, it doesn’t “work,” keep doing it because that’s a great formula. You did the Facebook group, what happened next? What did you do next? I know you told us what happened as a result of the Facebook group, but what else did you do to serve?
Since then, I’ve maintained the group. I’m not doing the free training anymore because my business has shifted. I was teaching manifestation last year, and I went to Bali in December and upped my game and realized that teaching this external manifesting stuff wasn’t creating the lasting impact that I wanted to have in my clients’ lives. I maintain the Facebook group and every Sunday, I show up at 9:30 and I do a twenty-minute. “Here’s something that you could learn this week” or “Here’s an invitation for you to look at something within your life.” I show up and I call it Brieathe. People call it like their Sunday Church and they show up. I served for 20 to 30 minutes. Sometimes I do a meditation with them, it depends on the week. I maintained that relationship with them. I do a lot of writing. I write at several outlets. I have a podcast and I share and I serve through the podcast.
The thing that I would say for your audience is one thing that has gotten common in entrepreneurship and it is like, “Here’s the golden ticket. Here are six steps for you to be successful, and I’m going to teach you exactly what those six steps are,” and I call BS on that. Each and every one of us have a unique path and there are no six steps, or at least if there are, my six steps are not your six steps, are not your audience’s six steps. That’s where the intuition piece comes in. You have to figure out what your path is. If you’re constantly going out into the physical world trying to emulate what other people are doing and what other people who are successful are telling you, you’re probably not going to find that lasting impact that you could find if you were to go inward and figure out what makes you successful.
It boils down to first, get the perspective of another person and see if it fits, and if it fits, then you can emulate. That’s what Tony Robbins calls modeling. I’m not going to be able to model Oprah, but I might be able to model Jay Abraham. Modeling is a great way of acquiring new abilities by using another person’s skills to enhance your own.
Even then, you might not want to fully model him because there might be things that feel out of alignment with you. Maybe there is something from Oprah that you do want a model and maybe there’s also a snippet over here from Ellen or from Tony or from whoever, and you start pulling out the little strings that you are like, “That resonates with me about that person, so I’m going to model that,” but not the totality of who they are. If I’m showing up trying to be a carbon copy of Tony Robbins, it’s never going to work. The other thing that I see a lot is, “So and so had success with it. Why am I not having success with it? That must mean I’m broken or I’m doing it wrong.” Absolutely not. It just means that that’s not your thing. I’ve had other people go and try to start Facebook groups and have just a fraction of success I had with it. Does that mean they did it wrong? It means that it’s not aligned for them.
What’s the name of your podcast?
It’s the same as my book, Permission to Leap.
Who in all of space and time would you like to have one hour to enjoy a walk in the park, a quick lunch, or an intense conversation with?
One of my ancestors; my mom has been studying our ancestry for a while and her name was Emily Talmage. She lived in the ‘20s and ‘30s in New York and she was very spiritual. She would go into a trance and channel sacred geometry. I’ve seen her artwork and I’ve read some things about her. My grandfather remembers her, and she is fascinating to me. I have so many questions for her that I want answered about how she channels. She was hospitalized for being crazy back in the day because that stuff was not normal. I’m so fascinated by this stuff and I would love to have one hour. To be fair, I meditate and I invite her into my space, but I’d love to sit down and jam with her for an hour.
I know that there’s probably many of us that have relatives that we would love to once again communicate with or maybe for the first time like you. Here’s my grand finale question. It’s called the change the world question. For me it is profound. I love answering and asking this question. What is it that you are doing or would like to do that truly has the potential to literally change the world?
The main thing that I’m doing is I’m helping people give themselves permission to be themselves, which sounds so simple and so silly, but it’s absolutely profound. Like you were saying with that piano player, we walk around shooting ourselves so much like, “My parents said I should do this or I should do that or society says I should get a girlfriend and a job and a car and an apartment.” That’s our whole MO. That’s what we’re taught. The more that we can give ourselves permission to be us to unlock those gifts that we have inside and bring them to life, the more that our world, not only our individual world, but collectively our world is going to transform before our eyes.
Bri Seeley, you’ve been a pleasure to have on my show. I’ve so enjoyed our conversation. What would be the best way to find you and connect with you?
I urge the audience to look up Bri Seeley and enjoy all of the amazing content that she has produced. Bri, I understand you have a free gift for our audience.
One of my favorite meditations, I call it my Future Self meditation, where you get to go and you get to meet your future self. It’s the coolest thing because once you start learning about who this person is, what beliefs they have, what habits they implement, who they are in the world, all these things, even how they dress, the more that you can learn about who that person is, the more you can start to become them in the present moment. Then they’re no longer your future self, they’re your present self. If you go to BriSeeley.com/FreeGift, you can get access to my favorite meditation.
Bri, I hope we have a chance to talk again soon.
Thank you, Mitch. This has been so lovely.
Resources Mentioned in This Episode:
- Bri Seeley
- Wayne Dyer
- Permission to Leap
- You Too Can Be Prosperous
- The Go-Giver
- Permission to Leap iTunes
- Bri’s Facebook
- Bri’s Instagram
- Bri’s Twitter
- Bri’s LinkedIn
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