The Joy of Well-being with mindbodygreen Co-Founders Colleen and Jason Wachob [Episode #785]
This week’s topic is: The Joy of Well-being with mindbodygreen Co-Founders Colleen and Jason Wachob
I am so excited to have my very special guests, Jason & Colleen Wachob, who are bestselling authors and co-founder and co-CEO at mindbodygreen, the leading independent media brand dedicated to well-being with 15 million monthly unique visitors. Listen in as this power couple shares how to cut through the confusion and empower yourself, breath work, longevity, and the environmental impact our food choices make, and so much more!
Cut through the confusion and empower yourself…
The one size fits all approach and what is realistic…
Breath work and why it’s important for your health and wellness…
Longevity issues and trepidation in becoming parents…
Back to food basics when it comes to improving your health…
We discuss the environmental impact our food choices have on the planet…
Sleep disorders and tips for a better night’s rest…
Long-term morning and evening routines that stick…
Colleen Wachob is the co-founder and co-CEO at mindbodygreen, the leading independent media brand dedicated to well-being with 15 million monthly unique visitors. She lives in Miami, Florida, with her husband, mindbodygreen founder and co-CEO Jason Wachob and their two girls, Ellie and Grace. About Jason Wachob
Jason Wachob is the founder and co-CEO of mindbodygreen, the leading independent media brand dedicated to well-being with 15 million monthly unique visitors. He is also the host of the popular mindbodygreen podcast and the bestselling author of Wellth: How I Learned to Build a Life, Not a Resume.
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Namaste loves and welcome back to our Monday interview show where we have some very special guests for you today, Colleen and Jason Wachob, who are the co-founders and co-CEOs at mindbodygreen, an amazing wellness brand, media brand, and they’ve also co-authored a book together, the Joy of Wellbeing, A Practical Guide to a Healthy, happy, and Long Life. And as we’ll get into in the show today, I admire them both very much. I think they’ve created so many amazing things and I really appreciate this book, which is practical and accessible. So very excited to share our conversation with you today.
Fan of the Week
This book is now out this week, but before we do, I wanted to give a shout out to our fan of the week. Her name is roxanaurdaneta. I think I’m saying that right. And roxanaurdaneta writes Insightful and life changing. I’m so grateful for Kimberly’s podcast. She’s so wise and insightful. This podcast has helped me so much in so many ways. Mainly it has helped me become more spiritual and to maintain a meditation practice, which has been life-changing. roxanaurdaneta, I am so incredibly happy, just thrilled to hear that you are meditating and I’m so honored to be part of your journey that we are so connected. My hands are in my heart. If you could see me now and I’m sending you so much love, a huge virtual hug wherever you happen to be, it really means the world to hear from you.
Please leave a review on iTunes and Subscribe
So thank you so much from the bottom of my heart and for you also listening my love, please take a moment out of your day if you so feel inspired to leave us a review on Apple, Spotify, wherever you happen to listen to our show because it really is so amazing to hear from you and it’s also an amazing way to support. While you’re over there, you can press the subscribe button, which takes the thinking out of staying in our flow. The show’s just come towards you and it’s a wonderful, uh, justno, a wonderful practice of self-care really to do for yourself. Please also share the show with anyone that you think would benefit. It could be a neighbor or a coworker, or a loved one. Sharing is really about selfless service. It’s really about abundance and expansion, and so I encourage you to share because that’s really what this podcast and our whole community is founded on, just sharing with each other. Last little reminder, if you are not aware that we, uh, recently launched a new three day Waterfall cleanse, which is a holistic program to help you reset your life and to clear away any fogginess, confusion, bloat, toxicity, just excess.
We carry on different layers of our being, whether it be physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual. So you can get more information at mysolluna.com, but this cleanse involves guided meditations, guided journaling, juice smoothie, and warm elixir recipes are Solluna, digestion focused supplements, stretch video. As I mentioned, it’s holistic so it touches all four cornerstones, and I think you’ll love it very much. All right, all that being said, let’s get into our interview now with Colleen and Jason Wachob.
Interview with Jason and Colleen Wachob
Kimberly: 00:51 So both of you on here, I am so excited to speak with both of you, and thank you so much for coming on, and thank you so much for writing this amazing new book, the Joy of Wellbeing, which we were just chatting about. I actually read cover to cover in less than 48 hours, which, you know, it, it really spoke to me, and I’m so excited to chat with you guys about it today.
Colleen : 01:15 Thank you so much for the gracious
Jason : 01:17 Words. Yeah, thank you so much, Kimberly. It means a lot to us coming from you. So thank you,
Kimberly: 01:21 <laugh>. And first of all, I just wanna applaud you guys for being true partners in life. I was thinking about this. You have kids together, you’re running a household, you’re running Mind Body Green, and now you’ve co-authored a book together. So when someone has that type of partnership, you know, I know a couple, only a few couples like that. It really says a lot about your connection and the, you know, obviously your communication, which is really inspiring.
Jason : 01:48 Well, thank you. Uh, it’s been a journey <laugh>, uh, but we are, you know, really blessed in that we get to really share our life and our work together. But, you know, as we write in the book, it was, it was not easy in the beginning. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And there definitely been some bumps, but, um, you know, we’re, we’re, we’re pretty happy today.
Kimberly: 02:06 Have you guys worked a lot on your communication, you know, with, with conflict and balancing energy? I mean, you guys have been together for a few decades. I think
Jason : 02:16 Our 14 year anniversary? 14 next week is next week, yeah.
Kimberly: 02:20 Oh, another congratulations.
Colleen : 02:22 Thank you. I, I think the biggest kind of relationship life lesson happened for us super early on. You know, in the early days of Mind Body Green, Jason was 110% in mentally and, you know, from a, a work standpoint. But it took us over three years to generate any sort of revenue. And so I was very, quote unquote employable, having worked at Gap and then Walmart and Amazon. And so I was the breadwinner of the family for probably longer than I thought I had signed on for. And we learned just, you know, from my experience growing up, I was not someone who was super inclined to go into entrepreneurship. I’m the parents of true entrepreneurs, carwash owners in the Los Angeles area. I saw the ups and downs, the uncertainty I knew as a kid when it rained that we weren’t making any money as a family.
03:18 Whole other story. But, you know, my dad was, um, the victim of a very violent crime on, on one of his car washes. So I was not someone who went into entrepreneurship with rose colored glasses. And I had in a, a built-in different outlook than Jason did around money and, and finances. And early, early on we needed to see a counselor to see how our two perspectives could be shared and brought together. And this not only helped our relationship, but also as entrepreneurs, we needed to have a shared outlook of how to financially run the business. And, you know, financial wellbeing is a company value of ours at Mind Body Green, it’s so important to us. And I think, you know, as entrepreneurs like the past three years have been, you know, kind of one interesting kind of hit after another and having that financial wellbeing, um, value is super important to us. And probably, you know, the, the earliest test of, of our marriage that has helped us the most.
Kimberly: 04:23 Wow. And, you know, that, that speaks directly to the book as well, because one of the reasons I connected with it so much was you guys really sharing about your personal journey, why you were inspired to start Mind Body Green. And it almost made me cry, Jason, the part hearing about your father and your grandfather’s passing away in their forties. You know, there’s this real authenticity of drawing you to wellbeing and, and wellness that you could tell really comes from your hearts. And that really came through. It’s a book for the people instead of, you know, some of these re these, you know, research centric books I get are like, look at how smart I am, look at all this stuff. But you could tell that this book was very so accessible. It’s really to help support people in their own journeys.
Jason : 05:10 Well, thank you. And, you know, yes. My, my father died of heart’s disease at at 47. My paternal grandfather died of cancer at 44, and my maternal grandfather died of heart’s disease at 49. And so men in my family have like a terrible track record with longevity. And, you know, it’s something I wanted to get serious about in my forties. And I’m 48 now, and I, I struggled turning 48 mm. So that I thought, I think emotionally and spiritually, uh, even though I’m fine and I, you know, have the lucky, I, I have the network of doctors and resources do all sorts of testing, but I still really struggle with it. I was like, wow, I’ve, I’ve outlived my father. I’m, I’m outliving I’m about to outlive everyone here,
Kimberly: 05:55 Um, giving me goosebumps. Yeah.
Jason : 05:57 No, but I think, I think it crept up on me in a way. I was surprised. But, you know, I, I don’t think I’m unique here. I think everyone’s got some sort of family history. They’re, they’re not thrilled with, you know, whether it’s cancer or heart disease or cognitive decline or whatever it might be. But you know what, you know, our jeans are not our destiny. And we’ve seen this conversation advance in so many wonderful ways that, you know, there, there are evidence-based approaches to really extend your, your health span. Or we, we also like joys span. Cuz you gotta have fun. Cuz what’s the point? If you’re gonna live to a hundred, you gotta have fun, right? Um, and you know, our struggle was there are so many great recommendations and so many things to do, and we’re in this business and we’re finding it overwhelming and impossible.
06:45 Mm-hmm. <affirmative> to keep up with all of them. And what we wanna do is like, there’s so many gems in here that anyone can do, assuming they’re, you know, able-bodied that. Because I think that the lack, excuse me, the, the, the main objection to our world is I don’t have the time and I don’t have the resources and totally get it. But there’s a way, and like that was really important to us to kind of zero in on, here are the modalities, the practices and protocols that anyone can do. And we’re gonna get you 80% there. You don’t have to do all of the things that are out there. And if, and if you like all the gadgets and the things like I do, you know, I’m wearing a whoop in an aura right now, right? <laugh>, that’s great. But you don’t necessarily need all this stuff and we wanna really get to the core of that.
Kimberly: 07:34 So I appreciate so much this very grounded approach that I think is very much needed in wellness because as you cover in the book, you know, we’re all on social media for, you know, varying amounts of time and for different purposes. But there is so much sensational sensationalism out there and you, you know, I think that you wrote anxiety, awe, and anger increase how much engagement posts get. So I think that’s part of the confusion out there. Um, and on the flip side, I also loved Jason, you mentioned medical gaslighting. There was a part where you didn’t feel good in yourself and then, you know, the doctors were saying, oh, you know, is it just maybe you’re just stressed out when you knew something was wrong with you? So that feels really good to me, this this power of individualism and, um, intuition because I, I think it comes on both sides.
08:25 We see something on social media and we’re like, huh, that seems a little out there, but look at how popular it’s getting. And then same thing from doctors, you know, even well-respected doctors like Andrew Huberman, um, who isn’t a clinician and he said something about blue, um, or the, you know, the earbuds aren’t bad for you, but then I’m like, whenever I put them in, I get intense headaches, you know, so it’s like there’s all this data, but everybody’s body’s different. And I think you guys took a really grounded approach, <laugh> in, in helping to cut through that confusion and empowering people to listen to themselves.
Cut through the confusion and empower yourself
Jason : 08:59 Thank you. Yeah,
Colleen : 09:00 I, yeah, I mean, I think that is the, the biggest lesson of the book is there is an abundance of information right now. And as you talked through on social media, people are not incentivized to share information in a way that is more nuanced and more thoughtful. Um, or that results in, you know, kind of a civil dialogue around, around an option. Um, there’s, uh, you know, study of the New York Times articles that have gone viral and anger actually insights the most, the most page views and engagement, which is really scary. Um, but because of these reverse incentives and because of the media ecosystem of all this information, the most powerful thing we can really do is tune into ourselves, take the power and take, uh, the responsibility of being our own c e o of our own healthcare. And you know, there’s times when I’ve been gaslit by doctors.
09:55 There’s times when I’ve gaslit my own symptoms. But at the end of the day, um, we are the ones who know what is best for our body. We are adults. And you know, in the book we’ll also talk through in the joy of wellbeing where there’s, you know, things that we know what medical experts will advise you to do. But there’s times when we intentionally break the rules because we know about the impact that it’s gonna have or not have on our own health and wellbeing. So you really are the c e o of your own health and wellbeing,
Kimberly: 10:25 You know, really made me laugh. This part of the book where, and again, just keeping it really real where you talked about TV actually relaxes. You call it at night, you’re like, oh, you’re not supposed to watch screens. You know, Dr. Michael Bruce has come on here several times and he’s like, love
Colleen : 10:40 Dr. Bruce. Love
Jason : 10:41 Them. Yes,
Kimberly: 10:42 We love them. And, but you know, it’s like sometimes these rules don’t have to be so rigid and you know, what works for you may not work for me. I know you guys wear your blue light blocking glasses, so there’s this like, ugh, it’s like this one size fits all stresses so many people out.
The one size fits all approach and what is realistic
Jason : 10:59 Yeah. And, and you can have fun. You know, that, that’s why Joy is in the title because we Yes. Think some of the modalities and protocols and, and gadgets and toys and it kind of can suck the joy out of, you know, all this, all, all this focus on health is stressing me out. Totally. It’s not. And joy is just such a powerful emotion and you can have fun. And you know, what, if all these sleep experts say don’t watch TV in bed, but you kind of enjoy watching a little Netflix and you can, you can get to sleep. Okay, then enjoy it. Do it.
Kimberly: 11:32 Yes. You guys have access to so many hundreds of experts and doctors and researchers and Mind Body Green. Was this book sort of a slow build? Like, hey, you know, because you, you guys have a very unique perspective into the whole health and wellness world, hearing so many dozens, hundreds of people speak on your podcast, <laugh>, all articles, was there a moment where you thought, Hey, you know, there’s, there’s something we really, we wanna put this into balance and perspective? Or was it a build, or many years you’ve been talking about writing a book?
Jason : 12:04 I, I think the build that started about two years ago, we started working on it. And I think for us, you know, we referenced a study that essentially said that anger increased virality by 34%. Oh,
12:18 It’s just, if you just pause and just take a moment and think about that and, and just take a moment and think about what you’re seeing in your Instagram feed. Yes. You know, people are incentivize, or people or brands are incentivized, incentivized by having very strong polarizing views. And we just, sometimes that’s appropriate and other times it’s not. And, and with regards to health and wellness, we feel like most time it’s not. And we believe in the nuance, we believe in the gray, we believe in empowering people to make their own decisions. And that was kind of the moment for us. We’re like, you know what? Like, there’s just so much great information out there and it’s so confusing. It used to be you would read a couple magazines and now it would be, then it would be you read a couple websites or blog and now it’s, I follow 2000 influencers on Instagram and one saying, eat the bananas. The other’s saying toss the bananas. The other one’s saying, you know, don’t even touch the bananas and it’s just so, or meat, or we could just choose any, you could choose any food. It’s almost comical. Um, and so for us it was like, you know what, there’s so much out there and we think we could get to a very reasonable place, but we say it’s 80%. Like we can get you to 80% of your wellbeing in a way that’s, you know, doc in science accessible and brings you joy.
Colleen : 13:34 And I think we have a very complicated relationship with the word wellness right now. And yes, what it means in society. Cuz on the one hand you do have the bros who are doing every part of their morning routine to hack it just right to live to be 180. And then on the other side you have, you know, Kardashian Wellness, which maybe has a little too much of a focus on what we call the frosting and not enough on the fundamentals or the cake. And our friend JJ Virgin has said, you have to bake the cake before you can put on the frosting. Okay. So we, we looked at this wellness world and what we really wanted, we didn’t really see our point of view reflected in these two camps and wanted to put forward a more nuanced and a more loving take on longevity because it should be a much more joyful, much more simple, much more practical journey than the way we see it playing out on social media.
Jason : 14:28 And some of these protocols. I would joke to Colleen, I’m like, this is a recipe for divorce. If you’re married and you start doing this as a guy and you have children, like your wife is gonna be like, what? See you later of like, what do you, yeah.
Kimberly: 14:41 So, so my husband, you know John as well? Yes. He goes, he gets, sends so many products, he goes more to the biohacking space where I’m not in that direction at all. And I had to put my foot down where he got this like, cooling mattress and it felt like this like shot of ice going up my side. He’s like, it’s only halfway on my bed. And I’m like, just, no, you have that too.
Colleen : 15:02 You
Kimberly: 15:02 Ice
Colleen : 15:04 <laugh>. Not as much. I like it now in Miami. Yeah. But it’s,
Kimberly: 15:09 You know, it’s like some of it can, can infiltrate. So I think it’s nice to have a balance and respect each other’s, you know, perspectives. And it’s funny, we have these funny discussions in our household as well. Um, but the fir I love how the book opens with breathing, right? Because breathing is so fundamental, some people don’t really think about the impact. You talk about how it affects nitric oxide and inflammation and all these things. And on the other hand, there’s all these breathing apps that can also feel really overwhelming. Like, I’m supposed to do breath work every day. And I love how you distill it down and there’s this core message about not mouth breathing, which, you know, seems obvious to share, but sometimes, you know, the obvious gets lost in all the confusion. So I thought it was such a powerful topic to focus on as you open the book and it really drew me in further and further.
Breath work and why it’s important for your health and wellness
Colleen : 15:59 Yeah. Thank you. Um, you know, breath, I have such a personal story that brought me to focusing on breath, which is one of the reasons why we made it the first chapter. Over a decade ago in my early thirties, I had a pulmonary embolism after looking and seeming very healthy-ish in life. Um, I had gone to a 11:00 AM yoga class and in New York, which was my, my ritual at that moment in time. And after class I called Jason and was like, I’m having some trouble breathing. Can you come into the city? Um, walked around for a bit, I was like, this isn’t going well, let’s head home. We took the train home to Brooklyn and the particular station off of the A train had very steep stairs. And I collapsed on the stairs, got out of the subway station, and this is when I, I I gaslit my own symptoms and was like, I’m totally fine.
16:46 I’m dehydrated, you know, doing anything to avoid an er trip on a sunny New York Saturday morning. But the rest of the weekend I was lethargic, I napped, I couldn’t really get out of bed, well canceled plans. So on Monday morning, Jason was like, the only way you are going to work is if you stop by the doctor on the way. And so I, I stopped by my GP in soho and within a couple minutes he’s like, you’re having a pulmonary embolism. Mm-hmm. I had no idea at the time what the word meant, gave me a little sign that said I’m having a pulmonary embolism. It was unclear if he was concerned that I wouldn’t make it to the N Y U er if I wouldn’t be able to articulate what was happening to me when I got there. But, but once I was there, I learned I had showers of clots in my lungs and it was the first time that I had really thought about my breath.
17:32 And when this happens to a seemingly healthy woman in her early thirties, I did a, you know, a battery of western medicine testing. And interestingly, I don’t have many pre um, genetic dispositions to clotting. So all the things they test for during pregnancy, I don’t have, I have, um, a copy of C 6 7 70 T, but I I’m not very likely to clot. And, you know, the only kind of conclusion they could come to was that there’s something about me and the birth control pill that didn’t sit right. Hmm. Um, and I had heard about risks, but, you know, kind of downplayed them. I thought that was something that happened to smokers or perhaps people that were overweight, um, which was obviously not the right approach to take. And, and now I’m much more mindful about anything I’m putting into my body. But when I wrote about this experience on my Buddy Green, the article went viral.
18:22 I heard from hundreds of women whose cousin friend’s sister had had, um, a similar experience and many of ’em, you know, ending catastrophically and tragically. So this was such an inflection point for me in terms of my entire wellness journey. And, you know, unfortunately I had to go to this breakdown moment before I took the steps to kind of climb out and, and build a life that was better aligned with my values. Um, but through this whole healing process, when you’re recovering, it’s really hard to breathe. I remember seeing being on the subway and there being a limited amount of, of seats and kind of fighting my way, beating out senior citizens for a seat because I was worried about standing in the hot New York’s, um, heat in the summer on a, on a crowded subway home. And, you know, through this journey learned, I was one of the many, many people who are breathing all wrong.
19:15 I mean, it’s more than half the population. Wow. And humans are breathing 17,000 to 30,000 times a day. So if you’re looking for a place to start your wellbeing journey that doesn’t cost, that’s gonna have a really high r o i because you’re doing it all the time. Breathing through your nose is a great place to start. You know, also as someone who’s, you know, has been prone to anxiety in life, it’s a great way to also activate your rest and digest nervous system and help keep anxiety at bay. And also just to be a better human. You are working on your active listening skills when you’re breathing through your nose and and resisting that. You know, <laugh>, I love that. Interrupt <laugh>,
Jason : 19:57 You know, as humans we’re lucky. And that if you think about it, there’s stimulus and then there’s response. And as humans, we have the ability to dictate the, the, the time between many, many animals do not. And so nasal breathing can help you there cuz we’ve all been, we’ve all, uh, found stimulus that probably found to be particularly upsetting and or cause us to be angry. And then you’re, you’re just ready to respond. But like, yeah, like this is the working process for everyone, including us, but like, you know, breathing properly, specifically like focusing on the nasal breathing does help you create the space between the response that you’ll likely regret.
Kimberly: 20:36 Right. Well, and I just wanna emphasize this again, how much I appreciate you guys really sharing your really personal health stories and, and just, you know, more of you in the book. And then when there was research, it really did feel like, oh, this really adds, this is like eye-opening. This is important to know versus just, you know, the books that we all know are really hard to get through because it’s just overwhelming. So I found it exci like, uh, like it was fun to read. There was joy in reading the Joy <laugh> wellbeing book. And I felt this, um, I felt it was like very personal, which I think is so important today to say I relate and this is accessible and I can do this. So again, um, you know, I love that part of the book. And I wondered, because you guys had been through some health challenges yourself, was there a little bit of trepidation when you thought about maybe being parents, bringing children in the world? I know, you know, you just mentioned Jason about some of the longevity issues with your family members. Did you feel like a lot of p we get a lot of, you know, fertility questions on our site as well. Like, I don’t know if I’m ready. You know, it’s a little bit scary, I’m gonna have issues like goes on and on.
Longevity issues and trepidation in becoming parents
Colleen : 21:50 I mean, I think I went in very blindly thinking this would be an easy thing. <laugh>. Yeah.
Jason : 21:54 We thought, you know, I I think we were the, you know, in many ways, you know, oh, when we’re ready it’s gonna happen and we’ll do the candles and the natural birth and, and all of that. Yeah. And then since we talk about in the book, that was not what happened and it was, uh, painful and it lasted a number of years. There was a happy ending, but it was definitely a process and it was painful. And we also had to do things which we, you know, weren’t intuitive to us. And like we, we definitely lean, holistic and natural first. And so that was challenged Yeah. Throughout the process, <laugh> through the, but there was a happy ending.
Colleen : 22:34 Yeah. I mean, I, I think it ended up being about nine IVF transfers and 15 embryos to get to our first daughter over four years, which was, um, really more of a excruciating mental ordeal than, you know, the physical one. And, and really reinforced that idea of believing in a power that’s bigger than, than yourself and, and having to let go and surrender to the universe and the plan that it entailed. Um, you know, I think now though, what gives us both our purpose and also trepidation, you know, to use your words, is, you know, our purpose with my buddy Green continues to evolve every year. And as the parents of two young daughters, we were talking earlier, it’s, it’s a really hard time to be a human. It’s a really hard time to be a boy. It’s a really hard time to be, uh, a teenage girl. And our, our girls are only six and, and almost four. But, you know, ensuring that they live in a world that’s, um, a well world, uh, and that they become well adjusted in humans, uh, that have joy in their life is, is really what we think about. And what, you know, we spend a lot of our mindshare on these days,
Kimberly: 23:47 So Beautiful. I love seeing you guys as parents and you can feel again just like this authenticity in the book, just how much you love your children and your family. And it really comes out. I mean, I can’t, I can’t say it enough because I read so many books and so many come across my desk and you can feel, you know, what is the intention here? Why, you know, why is this person writing a book? Or what are they trying to say? Um, and I could just really feel there was something really different about your book. And it was so unexpected. And it really touched me that there was this real clear just, I wanna help. I want to make the world, you know, have more joyful and have more wellbeing and for families to have more joy within them. That really came across. Um, so there were moments and I, it is not a novel, but I actually did tear up and I did cry and I completely not expecting that. Um, I, I lost my mom six years ago, quite suddenly to cancer. Um, so yeah, it’s, you know, it gets, it’s, you know, there’s complexity. We think about our health that I think about my health for my children’s sake, not just for my health, but it would be the, you know, horrible if they lost their mother. So it just, you know, it’s like layers and layers.
Jason : 24:59 Yeah. I think once you have kids, it kind of puts everything in perspective and, and your, your values change to some degree. And, and you’re very much more mindful about how you spend your time, where you spend your time. And, you know, I, I think that longevity, uh, is definitely at play when you become a parent. I think, you know, me specifically, I think there was various stages. There was me pre getting married where, hey, I didn’t really think about this then once I got married, okay, I’ve got a partner, then you have kids. It’s like, oh wow. Like, I, I really wanna be here for a long time. And then also it’s, it’s, I don’t wanna just be around for a long time. I want to be sharp. I want to be able-bodied. I want to be able to be, uh, mobile enough that I can run around with my kids.
25:44 Cuz if, you know, I’m 48, I’m a slightly older father, uh, I wanna be able to run with them. I wanna be played with them. I wanna be able to hopefully someday, if they choose to have children pick up their grandchildren, like, I wanna pick up a 30 pounder. You know, I want to be able to bend down and do that versus not be able, I think it just, the why change for a lot, for exercise, for movement, for nutrition, for everything. It’s like, this is where intentionality, which Colleen talks a lot about comes in. It’s like, what’s, what’s, what’s our why? Everyone’s got a why, why do I want to lose weight? Why do I wanna be, you know, why do I not eat well? And for us it really became clear and there was a focus, here’s our why. We wanna be with our kids. We wanna be doing what we want to do with them and not, not be, uh, you know, hampered by any sort of physical, physical or cognitive impairment.
Kimberly: 26:35 Yeah. And I love how you opened the book with Dan Buettner speaking about his work on the Blue Zone. So I love very much
Jason : 26:42 And it our, our neighbor now in Miami,
Kimberly: 26:44 Wow. Wow. He’s so great. And I just, I love everything that he does. And then, you know, there’s this part of the book where you talk about purpose. So again, joy and wellbeing aren’t always quantitative. It’s not just what you’re eating. Although I wanna talk about that in a moment, that part of the book. But there’s this, um, motivation, this intention, this, you know, that keeps us going. And that’s a big part. So I’m really glad you guys had a chapter on purpose.
Jason : 27:11 Yeah. That, that, that’s a big one. Uh, you know, I I think it can also be a loaded word for people. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, uh, it can quickly go to, well, am I in the right job? Do I need to quit? Do I need to quit? Do I go to Bali and start over and do something different? And you know, the way we think about it, you know, two ways, one of, one way is, is around happiness. And we really like what Arthur Brooks had to say when he was on our podcast and her, his book about developing a happiness 401k because I, we, we do think there’s this trend of people getting on like the hedonic treadmill and it’s gotta be like, big and bold <laugh> and quickly can be overwhelming for people who are working hard and have jobs and families and mortgages and so on.
27:58 And so we try to like break it down and ask some questions, you know, what, you know, what gets you out of bed in the morning? You know, what, what feels like you have a higher calling? Do you feel useful and relevant? Are you looking forward or are you looking backwards? You know, what parts of your life are you devoted to caring for other people? Like we really try to like break it down so people can start asking some questions because, and also this idea of mission statement, you know, encouraging people to write down like a personal mission statement, to try to articulate like what purpose and success means for them. Cuz we do think that it really is a loaded term and you don’t have to just leave your job or your partner and go off and disappear and come back. Although that does work for some people. Uh, you know.
Colleen : 28:46 Yeah. And, and related to, to purpose, the, the cousin is really this, this something bigger and this larger something that is bigger than all of us. Um, I was really influenced by the work of yet another Miami resident, Lisa Miller, PhD. And, you know, when we shared this work on, on social media at Mind, body Green, so much activity in the comments. Um, and what Dr. Miller found was that when mother and child were both high in spirituality, the child was 80% protected against depression compared with mothers and children who were not concordant for spirituality. Wow. I know. I love that
Kimberly: 29:27 Statistic.
Jason : 29:28 So essentially five times less likely to be depressed
Colleen : 29:32 When spiritual life was shared with the mother. And, you know, Lisa has such a, a generous definition of spirituality. You know, really a, a capacity for transcendent awareness, a transcendent relationship, something bigger. It can be nature, it can be brought through traditional religion, a walk in the woods volunteering, and just how do we see ourselves in the world in a way in which we are not alone. Um, so that’s something that I think a lot about for myself, for our family and, and obviously for our, our daughters as
Jason : 30:05 Well. And, and this is real science, like Lisa’s arguably the, the scientific authority on like spirituality. She’s collaborated with Deepak and, and everyone. Pen, this is, this is a study the Pentagon, literally, and this is a study out of Columbia. And so as you think about the mental health epidemic, spirituality is something ev every person really needs to, to consider as a protective mechanism here.
Kimberly: 30:31 Uh, yeah, I I, I really relate to that. I think, as you guys know, I really started with food as my focus when I was working to heal my bloat and my body. And then it just started expanding into lifestyle and meditation and spirituality, because intuitively I felt the more I just focused on one thing, it just, it just didn’t work anymore. You know, like you heal one part of your life and then to your point, Colleen, something bigger, something more expansive. Um, and that’s why, you know, the book has all these different parts that it’s hitting because it’s not just one thing that’s gonna make you feel joy and, you know, wellness and wellbeing
Jason : 31:05 And, and you know, something we’ve found is, you know, call it maybe the magic and or the science or the eastern and the western, you know, what we find a lot is they don’t like each other and they’re not open to each other often. And it really is a combination of, of both, you know, spirituality for some maybe, you know, a little, it’s not rooted in science, although it is. And maybe people say it’s a little, it’s hocus pocus, it’s magical, but like, it, it, it, it’s really undisputed and, you know, connection we’ll talk about too. Like, these are things that I think in our world, to your point, like nutrition and movement are paramount. They’re foundational. You, you, you have to get that right. But without connection, without purpose, without a connect, you know, a higher calling, I think all of that good work will often go to waste.
Kimberly: 31:53 Yeah. And then it just sort of feels a little bit empty at the end of the day. Like you said, where is the joy?
Jason : 31:59 Yes. I’m like,
Kimberly: 32:00 What are we doing
Jason : 32:01 <laugh>? I’m sure we need, I know we know a lot of the same people. There are a lot of people in our world who were incredible in doing amazing work, but they’re miserable.
Kimberly: 32:08 Yes. And across the board, when I worked with a lot of celebrities and I was, you know, before kids when I would travel around and live with them for four months at a time, it was, you know, it was like a little bit eye-opening because so much of our society really strives towards the fame, especially nowadays with the <laugh> whole influencer revolution and money. And then so many people get there and then there isn’t that, that joy and that true wellbeing. So I love that you um, you point that out. And so I wanna get a little bit into the food, which you know, is of interest to all of us because again, you’ve had so many hundreds of experts cycle through, you’ve seen everything, the plant-based, the paleo, the keto, everything, you know, the emphasis on metabolic health these days. And so I really appreciate how, um, neutral you are. But there’s some key <laugh> across the board, things that we know can really improve our health. You said, you know, back to the 80% like fiber, right? It’s like, eat real food, eat fiber. We know no matter what your particular diet is, we need to get back to some of these basics instead of thinking it’s just this very specific micronutrient or this superfood or, you know, things that can be really inaccessible for a lot of people.
Back to food basics when it comes to improving your health
Jason : 33:23 Yes, a hundred percent. If we were to do a book on nutrition, it could be, it could, you know, it’s like hundreds, thousands of pages and, and still there’d be a lot of people would be very unhappy. <laugh>. And to your point, I think, you know, this, this is, is the chapter we thought a a lot about. Is there a lot of different directions we could have went, but we went with, you know, what do we know to be true? One of the things we know to be true is, you know, you should probably avoid ultra now the keywords, ultra processed food. Look, we acknowledge processed food happens, but like you should try to avoid it. Specifically ultra processed food. There was a study in France that said that a 10% increase in consumption of ultra processed food led to a 14% increased chance, chance of mortality. So like, okay, 10%, 14%, uh, 10% ultra processed food increased, 14% chance of mortality. Guess how much the kids are eating in the us? Two-thirds of their calories are ultra processed foods. So it’s like, what are we doing to our children? Right?
34:15 Processed food is something we should generally avoid. And then to your point, like eat real food, eat whole foods fiber. We are, we are fiber deficient as a nation. And then, you know, I think we’re individuals and there are some people who can look at a piece of meat and their lipid panel goes through the roof. There are some people who could eat meat every day and their lipid panel is fine. So like we encourage like, some basic level of testing, but this idea of a one size fits all approach in terms of diet is just kind of like ludicrous. We have some best practices, you know, avoid processed food, you gotta make sure you have fiber, you know, food. Sh again, eat food, avoid sugar if you can. But at the same time, if there’s, you know, a treat you want to have, go for it.
35:00 Just don’t do it every day. Uh, but like we do outline some principles cuz this one is loaded and it’s emotional conversation. A lot of people have come to her space through like a place of healing. And I get it. If you embrace a diet and there are symptoms that no one could address and they finally disappear, that becomes part of your identity. And potentially, uh, when that’s challenged, it’s difficult for people and Yes. Yeah. And we’re in the business, a lot of people are not. We’re we’re, a lot of people are in the business of having a very specific point of view on diet and they, they don’t deviate from it. And that’s kind of the problem with social media. Right?
Kimberly: 35:37 Well, there’s also this aspect which was, you know, intrinsic and, and mind body green about caring for the environment and the whole, and you featured Paul Hawkins and all these amazing environmentalists. So as very informed people, I wondered, you know, I’ve been wanting to, I’ve been asking this question to different people because we’re all trying to eat our best and, and honor individualism, right? My husband is an omnivore, for instance. And so we know the population’s growing and so is portion size and we know that factory farms are, you know, have all sorts of, you know, many issues. We’ll just leave it at that. Yeah. But then you know, her, you know, meat, meat from animals that’s, you know, free range grazing, hurting is healthier. But then there’s the aspect of deforestation, right? That we’re seeing in the Amazon and you know, across America and across the world. So what, how, how can people, I mean, what do we do if people really do wanna continue to eat meat and they feel like it’s best for their body? How, how, what are people, how would, how would we fix this problem with the forests?
We discuss the environmental impact our food choices have on the planet
Jason : 36:37 So the, the environmental issues we’re, we’re, we’re facing are definitely complicated and there’s no one size fits all approach to this either. There’s no silver bullet. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, with that said, in terms of meat consumption, like we are excited about regenerative farming practices. There is a lot of potential there. One, in terms of how they treat the animals. It’s, it’s, they, they do it the, the right way. Uh, two in terms of like nutrient density, grass fed, grass venish, it’s just a better, if you’re looking, if you’re purely eating meat for amino acid profile and nutrients and minerals, like it is the superior way to way to go. Uh, and then in terms of the environment, uh, they sequester huge amounts of carbon dioxide, 250 million tons in the US annually. And so it, we do, we do think this is a win for the planet.
37:27 It’s difficult to do. We actually don’t, our government hasn’t been the best about subsidizing these practices. Unfortunately our government is in the business of subsidizing corn and soy. Uh, yeah. But it is encouraging. We do think this is a win. Uh, with that said, in terms of food and environmental impact, you know, we really wanted to focus on ROI here because quickly this becomes a, an episode of Portlandia, cuz it’s never good enough of every, everything’s wasteful. Like e everything. Yeah. Um, you know, but food waste, food waste is a big one. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, when Paul Hawkin and Drawdown went through his list, food, food base was at the, as at the top in terms of if you wanna have an impact on, on the environment, wasting less food. So that’s making sure whatever your or you know, don’t order as much. Uh, if you ha <laugh>. So like I love that each smaller portions, it’s simple.
Kimberly: 38:26 Yes.
Jason : 38:27 And then also fast fashion is a big one. Oh, 80, 87% of materials for clothing end up in landfills. And so what’s interesting in the research of the book is we found out fast fashion cuz initially like fast fashion, affordable, people can’t afford clothes. Totally get it. It’s actually those people aren’t buying it. It’s middle and upper class people who just want a lot of clothes.
Kimberly: 38:46 Is that true?
Jason : 38:47 Yes. And so the memo there Totally I know fast. Yeah. It’s like for clothing, you don’t have to, you know, okay, try to find out where your clothing is made, you know, obviously organic, sustainable materials, you know, working practices, et cetera. But like, find clothes that you really like and then you’re gonna, you’re gonna wear versus putting a hundred t-shirts just by like four awesome cotton T-shirts.
Kimberly: 39:10 Yeah.
Jason : 39:10 Maybe seven, four is maybe too little, but like,
Kimberly: 39:13 Well it’s, it’s empowering not to buy a lot of clothes. It’s, if I stopped buying like 90% of clothes and just wear old clothes and, you know, it’s kind of like you feel more unique that way. You don’t have to be on this treadmill of new things. Consumerism, it just another complicated energy that we don’t need necessary.
Jason : 39:32 Yeah. And like, you know, plastics is another big one. Only 10% of all plastic manufactured, you know, ends up being recycled. And again, like it’s part of our world, but if you can avoid it, try to avoid it. And you have to think about like the chemicals, the endocrine disruptors in your house. Uh, that’s a big one is you look at like male sperm count is, is plummeting there, you know?
Kimberly: 39:55 Wow.
Jason : 39:55 Total sperm from 1973 to 2011, total sperm count of western men dropped by 59%. Crazy. And it’s,
Kimberly: 40:03 That gives me goosebumps too, again, back to like the fertility issues that we’re seeing across the board, which, you know, a lot of the times it was first like, oh, what’s wrong with the woman? And now we’re seeing some pretty scary things about testosterone and sperm.
Jason : 40:15 40% of men men account for 40% of fertility issues.
Kimberly: 40:20 Wow.
Jason : 40:21 Including me in the book <laugh> <laugh>.
Kimberly: 40:24 Well, and then I wanna touch on sleep, you know, as the next topic because that is another big one that we know is such a huge issue and people are turning more and more to aids and taking things. And I love how you talk about these basics of, you know, get outside exercise, which, you know, just things that seem really, um, simple. But, you know, the research that you show in the book backs it up because, you know, I, I’ve had family members really struggle with insomnia and then I worry, oh my God, they’re taking these pills every night and so are millions and millions of other Americans and what’s that really doing to their bodies? And there’s no joy in taking pills every night, is there?
Sleep disorders and tips for a better night’s rest
Colleen : 41:03 No. Um, but you know, sleep is yet another chapter that’s deeply personal for me, <laugh>, um, as this book is very personal. Yes. Uh, in my, in my early twenties, I, I didn’t sleep for, for three nights in a row. I had a lot of anxiety that was spiraling out of control in my brain about a presentation at a job that I had clearly blown out a proportion in my, in my mind. Um, and the presentation would’ve had an impact on, on my final job placement. But, you know, clearly there’s a lot to unpack there about why I had let this, um, episode spiral so much. But I, I ended up in the hospital where they gave me a Xanax and that was the, the start and finish of my sleep etiquette conversation and the, you know, kind of path forward of how to, you know, instill better sleep habits.
41:48 Fast forward 20 years, this is something that is very much in the ge in the zeitgeist. 33% of us aren’t getting enough sleep. 50 to 70 million Americans have some sort of sleep disorder, the most common of which is insomnia. And so it’s, it’s a really scary part of our wellness routines because if you don’t eat vegetables for a week, if you miss the gym for a couple of weeks, you’re gonna be fine. If you don’t sleep for three to five days, you might end up in the hospital Mm. Um, and not be able to function. Um, you know, and when we talk about these two concepts of, you know, the wellness pile up when one part of your life isn’t in sync, you know, if you’re not sleeping, then other habits just kind of fall off. Of course the reverse of that, where we want to live and where we want to get the momentum is a wellness wave where one habit gets into place, you start feeling better, momentum begets momentum, and that small win leads to other bigger wins and you get so inspired to keep on going and, and you and you feel better.
42:50 Um, so sleep is something that, you know, has been very top of mind for me for, for over 20 years. Um, and I also fully understand, you know, sometimes the anxiety of not sleeping actually creates a bigger problem. Um, you know, there there’s been studies that show that actually having an alarm clock in your room exacerbates your sleep anxiety because you look and you see, oh, it’s 1235, I’m still awake. Uhoh. Yes. Um, so I’ve felt that before <laugh>, I think it’s, you know, the, the practical things that have helped me is, is really understanding my triggers. Um, you know, Jason and I are hardwired very differently. I know that I have to have different limits and boundaries as my most sacred form of self-care in terms of when I’m reading work, emails, what I’m doing on my phone. Whereas he doesn’t have to be as rigid in those types of boundaries that I do.
43:41 My caffeine curfew is a lot earlier than what other, uh, sleep doctors like many of our friends would even recommend because I am so caffeine sensitive. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Um, and I, I don’t swear by gadgets. Um, I did use an aura ring for about two weeks and I got a treasure Trobe of insights and, you know, I probably needed the data to show that alcohol has a big impact on sleep. And while I don’t drink a lot, I do enjoy, uh, an occasional drink with friends, but I drink by margaritas at lunch now instead of dinner to give my body more time to metabolize the alcohol so that there’s less of an interference with my sleep. So, you know, if we have one rule, it’s, you know, not to be rigid and to be very flexible, um, you know, in all areas of life and really understanding what your body needs. There’s some general principles, but at the end of the day you have to determine what your body needs. Not just, you know, to survive and thrive, but also to bring joy.
Kimberly: 44:43 I know it all goes back to that and that came across so consistently in the book. The reason we’re doing this is because we wanna feel good. We wanna have joy, we wanna have really fulfilling lives, not just get to this goal of, look, I’m 120 years old. Um, and while you were speaking Colleen, it’s funny, we um, we just, I just interviewed Will Ahmed, who’s the founder of Whoop on the podcast, and he was talking about, you know, if is of course quantitative tracking data, but he designed it specifically without a screen cuz he is like, we have enough screens. And he was talking about his, the power of intuition and how all his best ideas come in the shower, right? So it’s this balance of like, it can’t all just be like the data and the quantitative, but this, this joy, this, you know, some of the more, um, intangible, esoteric qualities or what really make us have those deeply meaningful lives. So thank you for mentioning that because it’s funny.
Jason : 45:35 That’s ok. Where am I? <laugh>.
Kimberly: 45:38 I love it. And it gave me some great data for the, for the weeks I wore it as well, <laugh>. Um, so, you know, as, as we wrap up here, and I just, I did, as I mentioned, just get so much from the research and from reading the book, you know, one question I had was, because you guys have access to, again, so much information, I started to wonder about your own personal routines. Well, you know, your morning routine and your evening routines. We don’t have to go into all the specifics, but if they, um, shift over time as more research is coming your way or, you know, do you just feel like there’s certain things that really work for you guys, whether it’s, you know, products and routines and you stick with that for the long term? Or is this more of a shifting aspect?
Long-term morning and evening routines that stick
Jason : 46:19 We’re constantly evolving. I think, you know, for me in terms of movement, you know, yoga saved me from back surgery and it was a big part of my why behind founding mine Buddy Green. And, but then as I’ve I’ve aged, I’ve really starting to get, get back to resistance training and, and the why there is the longevity piece. There’s this unbelievable, crazy and horrifying statistic that if you’re over age 65, there’s a 25% chance you’ll fall. If you fall once, you are twice as likely to fall again. Hmm. If you fall and break your hip, there’s a 30 to 40% chance you will die within a year.
Kimberly: 46:57 Wow.
Jason : 46:58 It’s not the the breaking of the hip that kills you. It’s all the things that could potentially happen after, whether it’s, you know, complications of surgery or an infection or potentially you’re bedridden, you’re not mobile, you become depressed. And anecdotally, unfortunately, we’ve seen this with, with people we know. And so, you know, I evolved from yoga, the strength training. Like I, I, I need to get strong. And if you think about like the, the being strong and why it matters in, in the, the context of falling is, you know, okay, let’s say I, I lose my balance. Well one, maybe you want to be mobile and you have balance, so you don’t even lose your balance and fall or two if you’re, if you’re about to fall, you’re mobile and you have the strength where you can grab something. So, so you don’t fall or break your fall.
47:41 And then lastly, if you do fall, you want the muscle, the lean muscle mass. So that, that provides an armor to kind of buffer you because, you know, sarcopenia is more common than you think. And it’s this idea that, you know, you’re losing this muscle mass and bone density and 13% of people in their sixties are suffering from it. And if we’re lucky enough to live through our eighties, half of people in their eighties are living with it and we lose 1% of bone density a year after age 40. Mm. And so this is like a real concern. So for, for me it’s, you know, I need to get back in the gym. I need to start doing resistance training to get, you know, I used to lift weights all the time and then I kind of let it go. And so that, that was like a big thing that’s changed for me. I used to be a huge intermittent faster, 18 to 20 hours. Now I’m trying to eat more protein so I can, you know, lay on the muscle cuz protein builds muscle mass. Those are like two big changes. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and our view is always, you know, the science is always evolving and changing. Don’t get married to anything, you know, if it feels good, do it. But if there’s something else that’s new and it’s compelling and you try it and like it and it works, go for it.
Colleen : 48:50 Love that. Yeah. I mean my, my routines have evolved throughout the decades of life and, you know, I genuinely love moving my body, you know, getting holistic treatments and that was such a big part of my twenties and early thirties. And if you have the time and bandwidth for that and enjoy it, go for it. You know, the life stage I’m at now with two young kids who are at a very high touch stage of their parenting journey and, and running a company, I just don’t have as much time as I will, you know, perhaps in my sixties when my, when my kids are grown in my, in my fifties. So right now it’s to me about integration and how do things fit inside my day. Um, you know, the things that really bring me joy, especially now as uh, a new Florida resident is spending time in nature, being on the beach, connecting with the sand and the earth and, you know, bonus points of habit stacking that I cannot be on my phone when I’m on the beach.
49:49 Um, and I really find that time very reawakening for me. Um, and very grounding. We do pickleball, we love pickleball, we wanna do more pickleball. Um, but really just being outside, I think when you haven’t lived in a warm climate as we have for 14 years, I, I take it as such, such a gift that, you know, I get to speak to you in a sundress, um, when it’s still cold in other parts of the country. And I too, uh, was very much impacted by the statistic Jason shared. I had heard it many times from doctors around falling. Mm-hmm. Um, but, you know, it really resonated with me. And my 2010 decade of life was very much about wonderful yoga and Pilates. And I, I still love both of those modalities and incorporate them, but I’ve realized that I do need to shift into building more muscle. I’m trying to do it in a way that still brings me joy. I like connecting with other women. Um, there’s literally a, um, Lagree Pilates in our building here in Miami, so it’s so convenient I get to connect with other women and do it in a group setting, which definitely brings me more joy after a couple pandemic years of at home fitness, which just isn’t the same
Kimberly: 51:03 <laugh>, you know, it’s so funny. Um, I just started doing some lightweight lifting too because Dr. Suhas, I dunno if you guys know who he is, he’s Deepak Ayurvedic doctor who works with all the Chopra programming. He prescribed me weightlifting for Iva. Ah, he said having, you know, stronger bones and more muscle would actually keep me more grounded. And to your point, I’m, you know, yoga and walking and I wasn’t not really drawn to weightlifting, but you know, to your point again, Jason, about shifting and staying open and not getting so married to our, you know, opinions. We start to see where needs shift as humans, as parents, you know, through the decades. So I actually just started doing it in our, in our, um, my husband made a gym in our, uh, garage.
Jason : 51:47 So, love it, knowing John. I bet it’s a nice gym. I bet
Colleen : 51:50 It has a lot of people here. <laugh> <laugh>.
Kimberly: 51:53 Yes. Well, thank you so much for spending time with me today with, with all of us, and for, you know, writing this wonderful book, the Joy of Wellbeing, A Practical Guide to a Happy, I love how you lead with happy, healthy, and Long Life. And I know, you know, it seems quite obvious, but share with us, you know, where we can get the book now, and now we can find out more information about all your wonderful work.
Jason : 52:17 So you can go to the joy of wellbeing.com or, you know, go to Amazon or any major book retailer. But, you know, we’re, we’re, we’re just so thrilled to, to connect with you and talk about the book and to get this out in the world. And thank you so much.
Kimberly: 52:31 Thank you both so much. It really comes through with so much love and connection, so I can’t, I can’t wait for everyone to pick up a copy.
Colleen : 52:40 Thank
Jason : 52:41 You. Thank you so much.
I hope you enjoyed the conversation that we shared with you today. As much as I genuinely loved being in the conversation with Colleen and Jason, they are such creators. I really do love them very much, and this is such a wonderful book to pick up and also to share with loved ones. So head over to the show email@example.com. We’ll have a direct link to the Joy of Wellbeing, as well as other podcasts I think you would enjoy. Guided meditations are practical enlightenment meditations, recipes that are simple and properly food combined articles. There’s so much on there, so please head over there and check it out today. I’ll be back here Thursday for our next Q and a podcast. Till then, sending you so much love and please take care of your precious, unique self. Namaste.