Who Is Rachele Brooke Smith?
After leaving her gymnastics career and finding herself lost on all levels, Rachele Brooke Smith went to the theater and watched “Center Stage.” That movie changed her life forever. She knew immediately she needed to act and dance.
Well, after the movie was over, she sat in the theater, envisioning what her life would be. She created and created in her mind. She left for LA, got involved in an awesome acting intensive, then was rejected over and over by agents. But during this time of rejection, she saw on the wall in a building where she was at for an audition notification for “Center Stage 2.” She went for it, and after a 3-month grueling process, landed the lead role! This is Rachele! The most amazing, hilarious, and positive creator you’ll ever meet.
She creates incredible joy, passion, and greatness wherever she goes. People are constantly drawn to the light she emits all. the. time. So excited we’ve had the chance to sit and chat on the Lemonade Stand Podcast!
Since her arrival in Hollywood, Rachele has been featured as an actress in the Robert Zemekis adaptation of “A Christmas Carol,” the Zac Efron comedy “17 Again” and in “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel.” Rachele also danced as an Ironette in “Iron Man 2,” and most recently was a featured dancer in the new musical “Burlesque,” starring Cher and Christina Aguilera. But who is Rachele Brooke Smith and how did she get to where she is today?
Rachele was born on November 7, 1987, and grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. She has an impressive background of jazz, hip-hop, ballet, modern, tap, break-dancing, boxing, martial arts, gymnastics, and partnering, and originally wanted to pursue a career as a gymnast. However, after seeing “Center Stage” in a movie theater, she immediately changed her career path and knew that acting was what she wanted to pursue. Rachele has commented that as she grew up she was so focused on working hard on her gymnastics that she didn’t realize how stressed and competitive she had become, at least until she broke her hand during one of the most important competitions of her life that far. Once she had surgery on her hand, she began to realize how unhappy she really was but felt like it was hard to quit everything she had worked so hard for. However, she managed to find the strength eventually and now looks back at how she felt as a massive learning curve.
How Did Rachele Get into Acting?
Rachele has commented that “This particular film [“Center Stage”] was so powerful for me. I had crazy goosebumps, chills, and was filled with inspiration, I literally couldn’t move. I knew right then and there that I wanted to be just like that girl.”
Rachele had plans to get into her dream college to pursue this but unfortunately didn’t make it in. A few weeks later, she found a performing arts scholarship program in LA and soon found herself on a plane with her mom to audition. Much to Rachele’s delight, she got in and had two short weeks to pack everything up and move to LA.
How Did “Center Stage 2” Come About?
Once Rachele had finished the program, she was signed to a dance agency and applied to an acting one but was again turned down. She was left feeling extremely discouraged. However, a few weeks after that, she saw there were auditions for “Center Stage 2,” the sequel to the very film that had encouraged her to pursue acting. After being called back multiple times, Rachele finally had the call from Sony Pictures asking her to play the lead role in the sequel to the film that had started it all. Rachele said that “It was a literal childhood dream come true,” and that it felt “so surreal, almost not even possible.” Very shortly after her call she found herself packing for Vancouver to begin filming!
What Else Does Rachele Do?
Rachele also has her own brand, THE DISRUPTIVE MOVEMENT — DisruptiveDare.com and Disruptive Apparel — and it is Rachele’s mission to share messages on ways to stay healthy and live happy and to encourage others to believe in their personal power to make their dreams a reality. Weekly life-empowerment videos are produced featuring her behind the scenes as she goes after her dream of becoming an award-winning actress, as well as providing dance, fitness, and life hack tutorials. She aspires to be a positive role model for all those who have eyes on her.
Rachele has also become the face of various marketing campaigns for JC Penney’s, Asics, Under Armor, Old Navy, Carls Jr., Nikon, Sketchers, Myokore, Capezio Dancewear, Casall, Kotex, Nappy Tabs Hip-Hop Gear and Gap’s 2009 holiday campaign.
Rachele has also starred in many television programs:
- 2010 – “Glee”
- 2010 – “How I Met Your Mother”
- 2011 – “Entourage”
- 2011 – “Talent: The Casting Call”
- 2012 – “Trend This!”
- 2012–14 – “Project: Phoenix”
- 2014 – “Anger Management”
- 2015 – “Scream Queens”
She also spends much of her time being active with her local church and volunteering for organizations benefiting homeless women and children in need.
Rachele Brooke Smith Podcast Transcript
Charan: Hey guys, welcome to a very special Halloween episode of the Lemonade Stand Podcast, I am your host, DJ Charan Prabhakar with my dear, dear, sweet, lifelong friend Rachele Brooke Smith, who I actually just met a month ago. So I don’t know if that necessarily accounts for a lifelong friend, but it feels like we’ve known each other a lifetime, maybe even two. If you know what I mean.
Rachele: It really does. I think it’s like we’ve known each other for 10,000 years from first pickup at the airport. It was like, “Oh hello, I know you forever.”
Charan: The first pickup at the airport where you stood in the wrong place and I was trying to scream at you guys to try coming over to where I was at, that was so great and it was such a-
Rachele: It was very eventful.
Charan: It was a very eventful pickup and I remember thinking, This is how our relationship is going to be, eventful at all times. So.
Rachele: And it has been.
Rachele: Proven so.
Charan: It’s absolutely proven so. Now, for those of you that cannot see what we’re wearing, Rachele is in the most beautiful minion onesie ever and I’ve got a toupee, I guess an afro toupee, the size of a country.
Rachele: More of a wig. It’s not really a toupee, it’s more of a wig. Yeah.
Charan: Yes. More of a wig if you will. Yeah, absolutely. But I’m about to de-wig myself because this is itching my head and I’m going to also take my sunglasses off. So for those of you who can’t see me [crosstalk 00:03:00]. But oh, [crosstalk 00:03:03]
Rachele: And for everyone that can see us, you should just watch the video just to see what Charan looks like and my awesome costume right now. Pretty stoked about it. Especially because we just finished a movie together called “Alien Country” and so this is one of my favorite little aliens is being a minion. So I’m probably going to wear this costume for other reasons other than Halloween.
Charan: Yes, absolutely. Well, I got to tell people because here’s the thing. I was in LA and when I was in LA for nine or 10 years, I had always wanted to meet you, Rachele. I had heard about you and my buddy Henry Amar, who is a dear friend of yours as well, had always done these videos [crosstalk 00:03:47].
Rachele: Love Henry.
Rachele: Love Henry.
Charan: And I had wanted a chance to work with you because I had known of you, I’d seen of your videos. And funny enough, I was doing a project back then and I was like, “Oh my gosh, I wish I knew her because I would love to have her audition for it.” And it just never panned out. Fast-forward nine, 10 years later, I’m back in Utah helping produce his movie “Alien Country,” which was such a blast to make, and Rachele [crosstalk 00:04:15]
Rachele: Oh so fun.
Charan: Attest to this as well. And I remember Renee, our main actress and lead producer of the movie, said, “Hey, for this one role, I’m looking at Rachele Brooke Smith.” And I’m like, “Oh my gosh, I’ve heard about Rachele. Of course, I’ve seen her videos and to be able to talk to her. That would be crazy.”
Rachele: So funny.
Charan: And so I remember I was so excited, but we were doing auditions and it’s funny because there were certain people that almost felt entitled to a role or whatnot and auditioning. And I was just so grateful that you did send in an audition and your audition was so great and it blew everybody else away. And we had some great actresses auditioning for the role and they all had their own choices. But I remember your choice was so great and so strong and so unique and fun and fresh. And I’m like, “Oh my gosh, we have to cast Rachele, this is unbelievable.”
Charan: And so we of course cast you, you came out to Utah a month ago, really and yeah, I got to meet you and your boyfriend Emilio. And the moment you guys were in my car, and we were just driving to, I guess, just the house to have you meet everybody else, I remember thinking like, “Holy cow. You guys are awesome.” My kind of people for sure and just had so much fun energy and so positive. So I’m just so grateful that we’ve been able to have a really great friendship on the set, have some really fun memories on the set, which we will talk about I’m sure.
Rachele: Yes, so much fun.
Charan: So much fun, but also to be able to do other fun acting projects with you. We’ve already done some sketches already and hoping to do a lot more.
Charan: Which will be great. But so the lemonade stand-
Rachele: So great. It’ll be so great.
Charan: It’s going to be so great. It’s going to be so incredible, so fun. That’s our words guys. She says incredible, I say great.
Charan: But the Lemonade Stand podcast is all about telling lemonade stand stories, right? The business owners, entrepreneur, creators, telling their “lemonade stand” story of how they got to be where they’re at right now. And so Rachele, I would love to take a trip down memory lane a little bit and hear about your lemonade stand story. So your first venture at creating something or a business or how you got to be and-
Rachele: Oh man.
Charan: [crosstalk 00:06:43] all that stuff. So the floor is yours.
Charan: Bed or wherever you’re sitting on, so.
Rachele: Well, first of all, thank you so much for having me on the show. Charan is one of my new favorite people. Literally, I just love him so much and I really do feel like it was just friend soulmates from first sight which is super exciting because it’s very rare that you get to meet those kind of people and I laughed more on filming “Alien Country” than I think I’ve ever laughed in my life, which was the coolest because I really do believe that laughter is one of the greatest medicines out there. And I think we all need a lot more laughter especially during the crazy times that everybody is living in right now.
Rachele Brooke Smith Talks About Becoming an Actor
Rachele: And so thank you for being you, Charan, and thank you for having me on the show. And I love the concept. I love the concept of the Lemonade Stand and your first experience. And I love talking about my first experience especially getting … How I became an actress, which is really my first dream, but this huge childhood dream that I had that everybody told me I was crazy that I would never make it.
Rachele: And it’s extremely challenging. And there’s so many lessons to be learned that I love talking about sharing to anybody else who also like, “I want to be an actress or a filmmaker.” Or go after any big goal or dream, especially in the realm of entrepreneurship, because becoming an actress or a filmmaker absolutely is entrepreneurship, you are your own business, you’re your own brand.
Rachele: And it’s even almost sometimes more complicated because you’re your own product. And there’s a lot of mental health aspects. There’s a lot of anxiety, there’s a lot of confidence issues, self-esteem issues that can go along with that. And if we’re not careful, we’re not proactive about it really to our detriment, and so huge advocate of mental health and wellness and high performance and optimization of self, because of those things. And so I’ll try to make this story … It’s a long story, but I’ll try to make it [crosstalk 00:08:52]
Charan: No, it’s great. Yeah, we’re good.
Rachele: Basically, I grew up a super competitive gymnast and my first kind of dream was to be an Olympic gymnast. And during that time from ages of six to 14, I was just every day, all day gymnastics, and it became so unhealthy and I was super unhappy to the point where I was so stressed out all the time of being hurt or getting yelled at or not being the best that I was throwing up every week, every Tuesday before practice, I would literally cry and throw up. I missed half the school year because I was so stressed out all the time that it was too much to go to school or gymnastics.
Rachele: I would stay home from school and just watch movies and then I would go to gymnastics. It was crazy and I look back at even Elsa who plays … Who is the little girl in the movie, plays my little girl in the movie? Her name is Peyton. She’s the same level, the same age that I was and I look at her and she’s like this cute little thing and I don’t know, I just look at her and I’m just like, Wow, at that age, I was so stressed out, I lived in so much fear. But what I had to learn was so much of that was self-created.
Rachele: I put so much pressure on myself to be amazing, to be the best, granted our coaches were yelling at us and they would sometimes throw things at us. And it wasn’t the best environment, it wasn’t a supportive environment. But granted, I started out with that because when I finally got the courage to quit, it was very traumatic, my mom at the time was very invested in my gymnastics career. It was her whole world, it was my whole identity, my whole life, my friend’s life.
Rachele: And so when I quit, I cried in my room for a couple months by myself because my mom who was my best friend — still is, by the way — said she didn’t like me very much, she didn’t want to talk to me anymore. And I was just like, just so crushing as a 14-year-old and-
Charan: It’s crazy. I was going to say to that point, it’s so crazy when you made your identity a thing, right? That’s outside of you. And you start putting so much energy towards that thing, whatever it is. For you, it was gymnastics, for me, it was the spelling bee, no joke. My dad was like a Nazi. I’m like, “Dad, I’m Indian, I get it. But spelling bees?” So that’s the thing, it was this pressure and it was this feeling of like, I have to succeed. I have got to win. Because this who I am.
Rachele: Yup. And you’re so young.
Rachele: Yes, you’re so young. But even when you’re so young, it is your whole world. And so if anybody’s listening to this, and they’re younger and they feel super attached, of if you’re a gymnast, or if you’re an athlete, or if you’re a basketball player, I think so many times we can become so attached to those identities. And it’s not who we are, we’re amazing human beings that happen to play basketball, or that happen to do gymnastics, but it doesn’t define who you are, it doesn’t define … It doesn’t make you more valuable as a human because you can do that thing, which I think is super important to know.
Rachele: But at that time, I didn’t know that. And I was just in my room and I felt so lost and confused. And I had, I was so used to, I would go to gymnastics every day. That’s just what I did. And so when that wasn’t there anymore, I was just like, “What do I do with my life?” I have no passion, no drive, no dream anymore. And when you’re so used to having that, and all of a sudden, this is taken away, no matter what age you are, it can cause some serious issues.
Rachele: And so around that same time, I just remember seeing this movie. And it was the first dance film I had ever seen. And I just sat in the theater and I just cried. And I was like, That’s what I want to do with my life. I want to act, I want to dance, I want to inspire people the way that this film had inspired me. Because when I went into the film, I was sad, I was lost, I was confused. And after this two-hour experience, I felt so changed, I felt so lit-up and so on fire for this new dream.
Rachele: And I remember sitting in this dark room, everybody had already left the theater and I just sat there, I didn’t want to leave because I just felt, it was the first time in a while that I felt so excited about something. And they literally pulled me out of fear because I was sitting there just visualizing myself doing that and crying and praying that that might be able to happen to me someday.
Charan: The theater was your vision board in a sense, right? The theater was like your vision board. You’re visioning yourself on there doing the thing. And what was the movie? What was the movie?
Rachele: It is called “Center Stage.”
Charan: “Center Stage.”
Rachele: It’s the first big dance film.
Charan: Big dance film.
Rachele: “Center Stage,” yeah, and big dance film. And I realized in that moment, I was like, Gosh, the thing that I loved most about gymnastics was dance, was performing. And so when I arrived at the film, I was given acting classes, given dance classes. And as soon as I did, my whole life completely changed. I went from living in fear to living in so much passion, excitement. And when I started doing that, it was just like, “You couldn’t stop me from doing it.”
Rachele: And I think there’s a huge lesson there, too, because when I was focused on gymnastics, I was so scared, I dreaded going every time and I felt like I had to because of who I was. Dance, it was like you couldn’t stop me from going, I couldn’t get enough, I never wanted to leave and so I think that says a lot about when you … There’s so many different life avenues to choose from, and we’re talking about our first thing or business or our first whatever. I think it’s so important to try different things in life, because if we don’t try, then we never know exactly what lights us up that way.
Rachele: And when you find it, though, it is like a superpower because it’s, I think passion is the best energy drink in the world. When you’re passionate about something, you have more energy, you’re more motivated, you’ll stick to things, you’ll jump through hoops and overcome challenges because you love it so much.
Charan: Yeah, the act of doing it is a reward in and of itself, right? Whereas some of the things, like gymnastics, for instance, for you was you were so driven by achievement and success and the outcome and stuff. And that paralyzed you, made you afraid. Whereas with dance, you just loved every moment of it just because in the act of doing it, you were satisfied, you were fulfilled, right?
Rachele: Yup. Well, what’s crazy is that it was actually very challenging. Everyone’s like, “Oh, it probably was super easy to go from being a gymnast to an actor and a dancer.” But my body was so just … To move my body the way that a dancer has to move compared to the gymnast is night and day different. And it was very hard, even though I thought I was super good. I was like, “Guys, I am so good at this.” Probably because I loved it so much. And but my coaches were like, “Rachele, you’re too stiff, you’re too stiff, you’re too stiff.” Because in gymnastics, you’re taught, you have to be stiff, you don’t move fluidly.
Rachele: And so it wasn’t like it was all just rainbows, it was very hard. But I loved the hard. I loved working on the hard. And it didn’t feel stressful, even in the most stressful moments of competitive dance or learning how to go to a different acting classes and acting intensives, I loved it. Even though I was sometimes nervous or whatever, it didn’t paralyze me, it didn’t make me physically ill because it was so terrifying to me. Anyways, and right around that time when I saw that movie, I came across a book called “As a Man Thinketh” and that was my first book [crosstalk 00:17:15]
Charan: James Allen, right? Wasn’t it James Allen?
Rachele: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah.
Charan: Yeah. Yeah.
Rachele: That talks about the power of your mind and the power of thought and how what you think about repeatedly everyday really affects the way that you feel and affects who you become, it affects the way you perceive yourself and the world around you. And I was 14 years old, I didn’t even like to read, I don’t even know how I came across this book, I just saw it and for whatever reason, I was like, Oh, let me just start reading this. And I became obsessed. And after that, I was just reading everything I could find on this topic and it led me to people like Tony Robbins or Wayne Dyer or Louise Hay or Les Brown, every different kind of motivational, anyone talking about the power of your mind, psychology, human behavior and optimization.
Rachele: And I really learned, too, that the study of acting is the study of human behavior. And so I just was like, Oh, these are just my two worlds of everything I wanted; growth mindset and personal development with acting are really so one in the same in different ways. Anyways, I started putting all these principles to practice. I put vision boards on the wall, I wrote down goal lists every day or journaled about playing “Center Stage,” moved to LA when I was 18, was terrified, had no idea what I was doing.
Rachele: My dad wasn’t happy with me because he was a doctor and he was like, “What about college? You have to go to college, you have to …” And I auditioned for a performing arts program in LA. And I got it out of thousands of kids all over the world. So I had two weeks to move to LA. I had no idea what I was doing. I knew nobody and I was so homesick, I was so lonely. I was so scared [inaudible 00:19:06].
Charan: Oh wait Rachele, Rachele, Rachele, Rachele, I’m so sorry. Can you give me the last five seconds? You cut out a little bit.
Charan: So last five seconds.
Charan: You were homesick, you’re feeling …
Charan: Yeah, keep going.
Rachele: Yes, yeah. But I was a part of this scholarship group. So I had a schedule everyday I had to stick to, I had people that I had to be with. I was in class acting and dancing and singing every day, eight hours a day and so it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, but the best things I’ve ever done and crazy story was right around when that program ended and I couldn’t audition, I couldn’t have an agent. So there’s no way for me to have worked. [inaudible 00:19:58].
Charan: Oh wait, Rachele, I’m so sorry. I think our Wi-Fi connection is … Hang on one second. I’m so sorry. Let’s do that last bit again.
Rachele: Oh no. Okay.
Charan: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Rachele: That’s okay. No worries.
Charan: You were talking about the scholarship, you couldn’t audition for anything, so what happened right after that?
Rachele: Yeah. So right after that, right after I finished the program, I actually could start auditioning. Actually could start auditioning again and so I started auditioning, and I got a dance agent right away. I was super happy and grateful about that. But I was like, “Guys, I’m an actress. I’m an actress, but I can also dance. And I can also sing, And I can also play music.”
Rachele: And they were [inaudible 00:20:45], “Well, you’re not ready, sorry.” And I got no after no after no, and so discouraged, and what I learned to do when I got super discouraged, my thing was I would blast music and I would just dance. And it would always help me feel better. And so when I went to go take a dance class to help me feel better. And I saw this sign on the wall at the dance studio, that I [inaudible 00:21:10] every day for the last year, I’ve never seen [inaudible 00:21:14]. I saw the sign on the wall that said auditions for the lead girl in “Center Stage 2.”
Charan: No way.
Rachele: And I was like, What? That’s my movie. I was like, There’s no way that this is possible. And I talked myself out of going because I was so scared. And because I just got a bunch of no’s from acting agents who I put on a pedestal. And so talked out of going. And then right before I auditioned actually was I had this moment in the mirror in the bathroom, those really dramatic moments where you look at yourself and I swear I felt this kind of voice say that you have to go. And I swear it pulled me out of the room and into the audition. And I ended up having to audition six different times, it was like a three-month process of being so [inaudible 00:22:08] your childhood [inaudible 00:22:10] crazy story is that an acting agent that actually turned me down a couple months ago had seen me and said, “Rachele, Sony Pictures just called me and they want to book you as the lead role in ‘Center Stage 2.'”
Charan: No way.
Rachele: I literally just yeah, I almost got in a car accident because I was just so like, What? What? What? And this had been after three months of what felt … I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat, I was so nervous all the time, I would just pray and cry that this could actually be possible. And I was so grateful everyday for this lady named Karen Meisels, who was the casting director, who fought for me, I was an underdog, I hadn’t done anything. That was my first acting audition really, it was my first acting role. And it was a lead role in a Sony Pictures film. And it’s a very … I’m so grateful that there’s footage of that because I don’t know if I would believe it.
Rachele: It feels like a dream now, but it was one of the most special experiences. I love telling that story because there’s so many lessons to pull from it. And I also think it’s just proof that there is a power of thought, it does matter what you think about all the time, and that you can change how you think and when you change how you think, it changes the way you perceive yourself in the world and your self-esteem, your self-confidence and your ability to do brave things.
Rachele: Ultimately, I just had to keep doing really brave things even though I was terrified. And I think that’s just something that I love talking about. So long story, but that was my first-
Charan: No. Well, listen, that’s just a powerful, powerful thing, because to come in to a place like LA, which is already a tough place to be, and to have auditions is a challenging thing already, getting an agent, all that stuff is tough. But for you to have rejections, and then to audition for the very movie, the sequel for the very movie that inspired you to do this whole journey. And then to land the lead role in that movie is unbelievable, right? And it’s a huge miracle, but it’s like one of those things that says, “Hey, keep at it.”
Charan: I’m a big prayer guy, spiritual guy. We’ve talked about this before and I believe that there is a Creator that guides you and helps you out. And for me, I’m just walking along that path and seeing what is possible. And then having those things come through is like, “Oh my gosh, what does this mean?” It’s like, “Hey, keep going.” This is just the first little bit, the first little sign, there’s tons more things to come. So just keep at it and be a witness to the miracles.
Rachele: Yup. Just keep going.
Charan: You know what I mean?
Charan: So I love that story.
Rachele: I love that you’ve said that and I just want everybody to know listening, when I really take myself back, being that 14-year-old little girl in the theater, seeing “Center Stage” for the first time, it really was such a profound experience that was not just … I get emotional thinking about it because it was a visceral experience that I literally changed in that moment. And I really believe that we are not human “thinkings,” we’re human “beings,” and we need visceral experiences that catapult us to be able to really do the brave thing we’re terrified of.
Rachele: And I would go back to that moment and I get a lot of young actors or actresses that ask me like, “How did you get into the business? And weren’t you scared? And how do you deal with rejection?” And I really take myself back to being that young. And I had no idea. People talk about, “Hey, you need to write down your dreams, and you need to have a deadline, you need to have timeline for your goals and also a clear definition of what it’s supposed to be.” I don’t agree with that because I didn’t have a timeline, I didn’t have a clear, I never said I’m going to be the lead in the sequel, I just said, “I want to do that. I want to do something like that.”
Rachele: And I just kept watching, I kept learning about it, I kept listening to other people’s stories of how they did it, and learning how they dealt with rejection. And I kept finding that the people that were successful in entertainment, and also just in business, there’s a common theme that they didn’t perceive it as rejection, they perceived it as one step closer to getting the yes, that there’s going to be 100 no’s for every one yes. And it’s more of just your perception of how you view it. And if I viewed it as rejection, I probably wouldn’t be here right now, I wouldn’t be able to continue on, but I don’t view it that way.
Rachele: I’ve also in my journey been for huge, life-changing roles that I didn’t get, and I worked for months and months on, and put my heart and soul into it. And it felt like it was going to happen, and it didn’t and I was devastated. But rather than taking it as, what I could have taken it as, I could have perceived it as like, Oh, I’m a terrible actress, I’ll never work again, nobody likes me. I could have created that story, I could have went that direction, but that direction took me down a path of disempowerment and not being able to continue to do the thing that I loved.
Rachele Brooke Smith Talks About the Power of Mindset and Choice
Rachele: And so what I love talking about is that we always have a choice, the power of choice is massive. And every day, we get to choose how am I going to perceive this experience. And if I can be super creative in the way that I perceive it so that it always empowers me, then I will always continue on and getting to do what I love. And I won’t ever feel jaded or bitter or start to hate the thing that I love because I’m able to create perceptions that empower me. And so if I can take a rejection, and spin it and use my creative, powerful mind to be like, Oh man, I’m one step closer. Oh man, look at all the lessons that I learned here. And I’m just going to take all those lessons, this isn’t a no, it’s a lesson to be learned so that I can [inaudible 00:28:41] next thing so that I can be even better. And this was meant for someone else.
Rachele: I didn’t get this because maybe this was someone else’s “Center Stage” moment, maybe this was someone else’s huge thing and mine is just I get the next one. The choice to believe we live in this abundant universe where there’s room for everybody to do what they love and letting go of these limiting mindsets of competition and comparison that just drain our energy and they don’t empower us. So it’s just this constant, every day we have this super power of the power of choice. How am I going to choose to look at experience. If I choose a disempowering mindset, it will disempower me and it will lead me down a trajectory that is not where I really want to go.
Rachele: So I can just choose to use my awesome, creative mind and spin it so that it does empower me, so that I can keep going and keep doing the things that I love.
Charan: Oh man, Rachele, there’s so many things I would love to say about everything you just said. One of the things I love to practice is the act of spiritual creation, creating the world within you, because the truth of it is, is the outside world, there’s so many factors that you just cannot control. And getting parts is one of those things where you could have the best audition in the world, you could win the room and still not get the part.
Charan: And there have been times where I remember, I would audition, audition, audition, I thought I’d give a great audition, didn’t get anything. And then there’s one time I remember I went to Disney. Yeah, yeah and I went to Disney for an audition and had one line, just one line to say, and it was for this medical show. And so I went to the room, nobody else was there. And I saw this list of all these other actors, pages, after pages, after pages, all auditioning for the same role that I’m going for. And I’m like, Oh gosh, what? I was having like this negative self-talk, What am I even doing here?
Charan: And I go in there, I say my one line, and of course, I’d mess it up, like why wouldn’t I? Of course, I vomit. I’m like, Oh geez. And the casting directors were like, “Okay. Do you want to just do it again?” And I’m like, “Yes, please. Please, yes. That’d be great.” And so of course, I did it again. And yeah, I bombed it. I bombed it and I left feeling so dejected, right? And it was one of those I always had to clear that narrative out of my head. But it was just like the walk to my car back to the parking lot after like this whole drive to the studio, and everything was just like, “What am I doing? Why am I doing this? What’s going on? It’s one line. I couldn’t even set one line.”
Charan: And then the very next day, my agent is like, “Charan, you’ve got to go the table read.” I’m like, “What are you talking about?” And they’re like, “The show you auditioned, you booked it. You got it on the table read.” I’m like, “What?” It was one of those weird, “Is this April Fool’s joke? But it’s not even April” type of moments. And I went to the table read and I’m sitting around this table with actors like Rob Lowe and these big people that I’ve seen before, and I’m like, “How did I even get here?” And the director of the show comes up to me, he’s like, “Oh my gosh, Charan, I got to tell you, I loved your read. I love what you did.”
Charan: I’m like, “Are you joking right now? Are you kidding?” And he’s like, “I would love for you to do what you did on the day.” And I’m like, “Can you please send me that tape of what I messed up on and did?” But here’s the thing, I had this crazy, weird perception and then it turned out to be a good thing. So what I’ve learned is really what I can spiritually create my world and what I would like and for me, I believe in my meditations, I believe Jesus is there helping create it with me because that’s just how I perceive it. But it can create this positive, awesome place.
Charan: A loving, joyous place, and what I’ve found which is so crazy is the outside world reflects it. It reflects what I’ve created. Even if it’s not exactly expected to have happened, something amazing happens and I’m like, Whoa, I don’t expect that at all. And so just a few years, I’ve been really focusing on like, Hey, I want to spiritually create my reality. I remember back in 2014, 2015, I was so financially in not a good place at all, just no money, nothing. And I was stressed out and especially living in LA where you need money to survive in LA. I was like, “What am I going to do to survive?” Nothing was working out, but then I started remembering this principle [crosstalk 00:33:45]
Rachele: I have so been there by the way.
Charan: Yeah, I think a lot of us have, right? And I remember I was spiritually creating, and all of a sudden, money just started coming to me, it was crazy. And so I’m a huge believer and a proponent of what you were saying of change your perception, change your narrative and your perception so that it empowers you instead of disempowering you. And I love that you do that because so many times, we do things that give our power away, whether it’s relationships or stuff, we give our power away, and they’ll be like, “Well, [crosstalk 00:34:24] happy. I don’t have any power in me. That’s why.”
Rachele: Yes. Well, and one of my favorite quotes that I repeat to myself all the time, it’s from Wayne Dyer, amazing, amazing teacher. He says, “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” So simple, but so profound. And it’s basically everything that we’re talking about, but it’s up to us to be able to change the way we’re looking at things so that The things we’re looking at can change. And like you were saying, the outer world is just a reflection of our inner world.
Rachele: Perfect example, I was going through super traumatic breakup, I felt terrible inside. And I was like, I just need to get away, I need to get away to a beautiful place. And I had this opportunity to do this job in Palm Beach, Florida, and was one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen. And I love the ocean, I love tropical places, it’s my favorite and I felt miserable. And it didn’t look that beautiful to me because I felt terrible inside. And then, also been in experiences where I’m in the worst, ugly, not very exciting places, but I feel great inside and it looks the beautiful to me.
Rachele: And I think we can all resonate with that of our inner state is what is creating our outer world. And the more I think I tap into that, and realize, I’m so grateful that as a gymnast, I learned the power of visualization. We learned how to visualize ourselves, doing the routine and seeing yourself win the competition. And it doesn’t always turn out the way that you’re visualizing it. But it’s this concept of this whole internal world in our brain and our body. And we’re so much more than these physical beings, this is just an earth suit I get to wear that I get to experience all these cool things in and especially being an actress and talking about I’ve had my own struggles with body image issues, and mental health and things like that because I am a product that gets bought and sold to do different movies that are people’s products that they sell.
Rachele: And I used to do a ton of fitness, I still do a ton of fitness campaigns for Nike and Skechers, and all these different athletic brands. And I used to be a lot … My body used to look a lot different than it does now, Me, I was 20 pounds lighter to the point where it was unhealthy, but because it was a product for fitness, it was that way. And I’ve had to do a lot of … And I talk a lot about mental health and body image issues. And one of the things that’s helped me the most is understanding that gratitude changes everything. And so many times, we’re so focused on the look of something rather than the functionality of something.
Rachele: And when I change my perception, again when I changed the way I was looking at my body, changed the way I was looking at myself even, that it was so much more than this physical body, that I was this amazing, divine, limitless-potential being that could create whatever it wanted to create. And I got so grateful for all the things my body and my mind could do for me. All the sudden, all the image issues fizzled away. Sometimes they’ll come up here and there. But then like, “Wait, I’m so grateful that I can run, that I can dance, that I can hug someone, that I can laugh, I can cry, I can do all these cool things. That what if I didn’t have a body? How would my life be like then?”
Rachele: And another quote that I think really helps drop into this appreciation rather than comparison is “If you don’t take care of your body, where are you going to live?”
Rachele: If you don’t take care of it, meaning how you talk to yourself, how you eat, how you live, how you perceive things, you don’t have a place, all the cool things that you’re able to do, you won’t be able to do them because you don’t have a body to do it. And I think, I don’t know, it just changed everything. But again, I changed the way I was looking at something and then that thing completely changed.
Rachele Brooke Smith Talks About Overcoming Challenges
Charan: Completely changed, which is amazing. So I wanted to ask you a question. We were talking a little bit about mental health and anxiety and some of the things that you’d gone through in your life. Do you have a moment that was a very specific “turning lemons to lemonade” type of story where it was such a struggle or a beatdown. I know we talked yesterday even about relationships and how some of the things that you had gone through personally affected your relationships. So yeah, do you have a specific time or something that we can talk about that?
Rachele: Oh, absolutely. Well, I think they’re two different components, but one and the same and so I was always so driven by achievement. I grew up in a very high-performing family, I’m one of five and everybody’s … My dad is a neurosurgeon, my brother is a neuroscientist, my other brother is an ENT, just crazy. The youngest brother is an aerospace engineer and my sister is in medical school, and I’m just like, “I’m an actress.” But whatever we do, we all, my whole family, experienced extreme anxiety issues and mental health issues because we each put so much pressure on ourselves and to be amazing at everything we did.
Rachele: And we’ve talked a lot about that as a family and my parents and stuff, they’re like, “We don’t know what we did. But all we care is that you guys are good and healthy, and you don’t have to do all this stuff.” But I think it was just this innate thing in all of us. And especially after I did “Center Stage,” and then I did a movie called “Bring It On,” and I had to spend, I was so focused on achievement of-
Charan: Achievement, yeah.
Rachele: Mindset. It was all achievement. I was like, I have to achieve basically in order to feel okay or feel like I’m worth something. And ultimately to feel loved. If I didn’t achieve enough, then I’m not going to get acceptance or be loved by people. And that’s a not fun way to live. Not at all and it’s a setup for extreme anxiety and self-esteem issues and mental health issues. And there was this turning point when, I remember I had, my friend Nikki, who I met on “Bring It On,” she would invite me to all these game nights, friend experiences.
Rachele: And I always be like, “Oh sorry, I can’t. Oh sorry, I can’t. Oh sorry, I can’t.” And I remember this one time she stopped inviting me and I just asked her, I was like, “Hey, are you doing anything?” She’s like, “Oh, I just stopped inviting you to things because you’re not a good friend.” And I was like, “What?” And it was just a knife in my stomach, but it was the best thing she could have ever said, that brutal, loving honesty woke me up to the point where I was like, “Oh my gosh, I don’t, I don’t feel supported. I don’t feel like I have great friends. But it’s not anybody else’s fault. It’s my fault because I’m not being a good friend.”
Rachele: Because when my friend would ask me to go to lunch or go to do things and I’d be like, “No, no, I got to work. I got to achieve the next thing.” And so it’s a huge wake-up call, but there was a huge turning point in my life from that moment when I had this wake up call, I was like, That’s not who I want to be. I want to be a good friend and I know I can be. And I started realizing like, Wow, I don’t prioritize relationships. I also had some pretty toxic, unhealthy relationships with my boyfriends and things like that because I didn’t prioritize them and I didn’t ever learn how to have good relationships.
Rachele: I talk a lot of it about how if you want to be a doctor, you go to med school, if you want to be a lawyer, you go to law school. If you want to have great relationships, we have to study and learn how to do so, right? It’s not like we have math and science and relationships. It’s not that way. So it’s almost like we have to take it upon ourselves and it’s so cool that we live in this time when information is at our fingertips, all you have to do is literally Google search.
Rachele: And that’s what I started doing. So I was like, Okay. I’m just going to Google how to be a better friend or how to be a better girlfriend or I start how to communicate better with people. I just went on this deep-dive of learning and studying and spending time on how to have better relationships, because I also heard this quote that also helped a lot was just, “The quality of your life is very dependent on the quality of your relationships.”
Rachele: And I was like, Dang. Because there’s always going to be another job, there’s always going to be nothing to achieve. But when you’re struggling and you’re going through a very difficult challenge, who’s going to be there for you if you haven’t been there for anybody else? And we are wired for community and connection and support. And if our relationships are literally the foundation of mental health and well-being, and it wasn’t until I started prioritizing, take it upon myself. It’s so easy to blame other people, right?
Rachele: When someone said something like that, I could have said back to Nikki like, “Oh, you’re such a terrible person. I don’t like you anymore. You’re a bad friend. I don’t want to talk to you anymore.” I totally could have done that. And I could have justified all the reasons why that was okay. But I had, again, this superpower of choice to am I going to get disempowered or empowered? And what kind of life do I want to create? And I was like, You know what? I really want to have friends. And I also realized that I wanted to enjoy my life.
Rachele: I heard somebody say, “Hey, at the end of your life, are you going to wish that you sent more emails? Are you going to wish that you … No, you’re probably going to wish that you had more loving, awesome experiences with people that you loved, you’re probably going to wish that you enjoyed your life more.” And I was like, Yes. I was like, Why am I working so hard to achieve all these things when I’m not really taking it all in and enjoying it and doing what people that I love? And from that moment on, I really did turn lemons to lemonade with this decision that I will prioritize, I will be more driven by enjoyment than achievement.
Rachele: And in that decision, I was able to prioritize my relationships, I started having, going to friend events and doing fun things with people. And from doing that because I was so much more happy, I was enjoying my life more. All of a sudden, I was just like a magnet to more dreams coming true because in those prioritizing my relationships and creating fun experiences together in the doing of that, all of a sudden, this producer, that friends’ night we set up and he was like, “Oh my gosh, I have a movie that you’d be perfect for.” And then I ended up booking that role.
Rachele: It’s crazy that how we can work so hard thinking we have to do all by ourselves. And then when we just get out and live and go do things that light us up, opportunities just come at us.
Charan: Well, oh my gosh, I love that journey you went on, and I love how you’re motivated by enjoyment over achievement, because I feel like that’s how I try to live my life as well. And when I was probably in high school, I had a buddy of mine that was always like, “Hey dude, let’s make memories. Let’s make memories.” And we’ve made these homemade movies that were so incredibly dumb, but we thought they were the best. And we were just laughing our heads off like, “This is so great.”
Charan: And after high school, he had an accident and he passed away. But then all those videos that we did were suddenly priceless, right? And they were like, Oh my gosh, I can always hold on to those and reflect on those and think about how awesome they are. And I keep thinking about that because yeah, too many times and I’ve been caught up in it. I was caught up in it when even when I went to school, I went to BYU and there were times when I was also driven by achievement, and I wanted to get good grades. And so I would be focusing so much on these grades and getting all this stuff that I would avoid hanging out with friends.
Charan: And sometimes weeks would go by without me even seeing friends because I was just so focused on this grade or this thing or that thing. And I got the grades, but the thing was, I look back and I’m like, Man, I don’t care about that A. I don’t care about that test score, I just don’t care. None of that matters. But what matters to me when I look back on my life are these little significant moment with friends.
Charan: And so that’s why when we did “Alien Country,” it was like a dream come true for me because it was a chance for me. Listen, I loved LA, I thought it was awesome that I made some really great connections. And I was involved in a lot of fun projects. But “Alien Country” was a little different, because I got to do it and I got to help produce it with my friends. And when we all came together, the amount of laughter that we had-
Rachele: It was so fun.
Charan: Was unbelievable. Every day, we were just laughing and laughing and finding things to laugh at. In fact, I have to tell everyone this story, because we were shooting in Manti, Utah. And it was a night shoot. And it was pretty cold. It was pretty chilly.
Rachele: So cold.
Charan: So cold. So between takes, we would try finding the warmest place to hang out in and the makeup trailer was very, very warm and relaxed and calm. And it was just a great place to be. But Rachele said, “Hey Charan, I have a great idea.” I’m like, “I’m all about great ideas.” She’s like, “Why don’t we just go hang out in your car and turn the heater on and go by the set so that when they call us, we can just like walk out.” And I’m like, “Yeah, that’s great, but we would have to go through cold.”
Rachele: And because I wanted to lay down.
Charan: You wanted to lay down, you were tired, I was tired.
Rachele: Yeah, because I wanted to lay down, that’s why.
Charan: Yeah, you wanted to lay down.
Rachele: It was also 4:00 in the morning, it was 4:00 in the morning everybody.
Charan: It was 4:00 in the morning, we’ve been shooting all night. And I’m like, all right, so we go into my car. And we were both trying to have like the most positive, positive attitude about it. But my car was freezing, just so cold and I kept thinking, But the makeup trailer was amazing. We were like, No, no, this is great. This is so fun. We love being in here right now waiting for the car to warm up. And I think by the time it finally warmed up, they called us to set. So we really didn’t get a chance to really sit back, but it was so funny. And it was just one of those small moments that I remember thinking, This is something we won’t forget, these fun little silly, joyous moments that are totally free. And I feel like some of the best moments I’ve had in my life completely free. But the memories are unbelievable. So, but now that we’re [crosstalk 00:50:46]
Rachele: Yeah, and let me just say that there was [crosstalk 00:50:48]
Charan: Yeah, yeah, please.
Rachele: There was a point in time when I was laughing so hard, I literally couldn’t breathe because Charan was being hilarious and I was very slap-happy at the time. And I was just like, This is one of the funnest experiences I’ve ever had. And I was just literally in a car at 4:00 in the morning when it’s freezing cold outside shooting a movie, but I agree, I’ve been a part of so many, really incredible films. But this one to me just feels so just special, just absolutely special. It is one of the most fun action-comedy movies that, and and I really believe that, because everybody’s energy and mindset in the film was such about, Hey, let’s have a great time together. That I think that plays out and you see that on-camera because people are supported, you feel empowered.
Rachele: Sometimes on film sets there can be this comparison going on or competition of, “Oh, who’s going to steal the scene or be a better actor or whatever.” And I really think it just weakens us, it weakens our performances, it weakens our connection. And so I think I posted about this on my Instagram recently that there’s so much separation going on in the world right now and anything that separates us literally weakens us. Separation and competition or comparison absolutely weakens us. And I’m not saying healthy competition isn’t good, it’s motivating, but when we’re to the point where it is separating us where we can’t even see that there’s another human being, that also has their own perception, their own feelings, their own goals, their own dreams, their own challenges, and just life.
Rachele: But anything that we can find that connects us, that creates more compassion for the human experience, it strengthens us, it gives us all those good, yummy, warm feelings of like, Yeah, my life is meaningful. And there’s a reason why I’m here and this person and this beautiful experience. And I think we can find compassion and connection even in the most challenging times, even when we don’t agree with people. Even when I think sometimes when we have … I think sometimes we live in a world where if I don’t agree with somebody that all of a sudden, “Oh, I don’t want to talk to you, I don’t want to be your friend because you don’t agree with me.”
Rachele: And I think some of my greatest friendships, and even in my beautiful relationship that I have now with my love of my life who I’m so grateful for every day, we have disagreements sometimes, we don’t agree about everything. And we don’t always see eye to eye. But it’s because of that and because of again, the power of choice, choose that I’m going to allow for more compassion, more connection because of our differences. I think again, that’s a choice. But I am so excited for a time when the world feels more, that we can have more connection and compassion regardless of our differences.
Charan: Well, it’s such an interesting time that we’re living in right now because with COVID, with the elections coming up, there’s so many things that are dividing us from each other. And I feel like this pressure is coming from all sides, but what I’ve also noticed which has been very interesting is as this pressure has been coming in, I’ve also seen an increase in human compassion, and an increase in joy and connection. To me, this movie that we did symbolizes something fantastic because not only do we created a fun, awesome project together, but in the act of doing it together, we have to work together.
Charan: And a movie is such a beautiful thing because every single person is so important. It’s not just the actors, it’s not just the director or producer or whatever, every crew member, every person that’s lifting something and bringing it to somebody else. All those things are so important and it’s like this environment that we can create and thrive and it’s been fun because I’ve had the chance to talk to a lot of the crew members and stuff. And we’ve had little get-togethers and whatnot afterwards. And they’ve all said it was such a beautiful experience. And I remember Rachele, you weren’t part of this, but we went down further south to a place called Ticaboo. And when we were there, we were all in this hotel room together and everyone kind of got into like the same hotel room and played games and had fun.
Charan: And there was just no distinction. Our lead actor [crosstalk 00:55:38] was there hanging out with some of our PAs and we were just all joking around, having a good time, no division whatsoever, all compassion, all good. And I really feel that is the missing ingredient for joy.
Rachele: Yes, I agree.
Rachele Brooke Smith Talks About Finding Joy in Uncertainty
Charan: And that I think is what is going to help bring us together. But I was going to ask really what has brought you joy during this time when things have become so uncertain? Has there anything that stood out other than what we’ve already discussed?
Rachele: Yeah, I definitely think, there’s so many things that come to mind. One of the first is there has, there’s been, I love people that took a stand and realize that there’s a lot of fake news going on. And they took it upon themselves to create their own good news networks for every “bad thing” that they were going to highlight, but look at all the good, look at these beautiful people telling these stories of incredible love and compassion and hope and faith and joy amidst all of it. I think that whole thing of when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. All we’re looking at is news that’s being thrown at us, that is powered by people that have money that are telling certain stories that want to be told, then that’s all we’re going to see.
Rachele: And we’re going to miss out on all of the beautiful, incredible stories that aren’t being told, that are going on at the same time. And that’s a lot of the reason why my boyfriend and I, Emilio Palafox, we created Relationship Renegades. So we started a brand called Relationship Renegades and it’s so interesting that the thing that I used to suck at, I am the most passionate about and has brought the most joy in my life is relationships. And we’re like, Gosh, you know what? Because one of the things when we first started dating, he was just expressed, he’s like, “Oh man, you’re an actress.” Most of the time, there’s so many stories of actors that have failed relationships, or what if you had a movie and you fall in love with your co-star, all these different stories that we could tell.
Rachele: And I was like, “I get so lit up about this.” Because I’m like, “No, no, no, no, no, you don’t understand because all that we ever hear from media is about the toxic, unhealthy failed relationships.” So we start to perceive this world that it looks like that’s all there is, but that’s not true. Because when I got to Hollywood, and I was doing all these films, I was meeting and connecting with all of the most, some of the most beautiful people, as beautiful, incredible, strong, healthy relationships, and things you don’t hear about. For every maybe unhealthy relationship, there’s a beautiful one that’s not being talked about.
Rachele: And so we’re like, “We want to create a brand where we just help change the narrative where we highlight and talk about all the awesome relationships and all the things that we can learn from relationship experts and conscious couples around the world and neuroscientists and psychologists about how to do this relationship thing better especially if it really is the foundation of our mental health and well-being.”
Charan: Yeah. And one of the things that I loved about talking to you about Relationship Renegades is it starts with yourself, having a good relationship with yourself.
Charan: You know what I mean? And one of the things that-
Rachele: Yes, it does.
Charan: … I loved when we first met, we were talking about like how important it is to truly and genuinely love yourself, to love yourself enough to say, “Hey, I don’t want negative narratives in my head anymore. I love myself enough to let [crosstalk 00:59:31] negative narratives go.” And the more you love yourself, the more you’re able to allow for better relationships to come into your life. Because again it’s like whatever is going on inside, that’s what the outside world reflects. And so I love it. I love it. Honestly, it’s so great.
Rachele: I love that you brought it up, because that concept, the most important relationship you’ll ever have is the one with yourself. And I think we’re not … When we’re in elementary school and high school, it’s not like we have math and science and self-love class, I can’t wait for the day that there’s a world that it happens, but because it’s not there yet, I think it’s again, it’s like we have to take it upon ourselves to figure out what we want our life to be about. And whatever we want our life to be about, spend the time learning about how to do that.
Rachele: And so I think this concept of self-love is talked about a lot more than it ever has been throughout history. However, I still think it gets this not bad rap, but I remember getting to all the time especially when I was a teenager, I was younger, they’re like, “Oh, you just need to love yourself, have more self-love.” And I was like, “What does that even mean?” [crosstalk 01:00:56] I can’t comprehend because right now, I don’t even … I have a hard time looking at myself in the mirror, all my thoughts were I was always beating myself up, I was always comparing myself to other people. And what I had to learn was one, that you’re the only you there will ever be ever, there will never be another you throughout all the space and time and that is a superpower, that is a miracle.
Rachele: And when I heard that, I was like, Wow, there’s never going to be another me. And because of that, nobody else can be you. Each of us individually have this amazing power that our own unique skillsets, our makeup and challenges and adversities and struggles and weaknesses and strengths. And just this unique makeup that makes us who we are and that is our greatest power because nobody else can do it except for you and so I think really owning that. And then also understanding that you’re never getting away from you either, right?
Rachele: You’re with yourself 24/7, seven days a week, 365. And so when we talk about I think there’s a very known quote out there, it’s like, “You become who you hang out with. The five people you spend the most time with, you become.” Well, nobody talks about the fact that the number one person that you spend the most time with is yourself. And everyday again we have this choice. Either I’m going to continue to be my worst critic, my worst enemy, or I’m going to choose to figure out a way to become my biggest supporter and my best friend.
Rachele: Especially when I was really learning about all this stuff, I was like, “I could always just take a second.” And whenever I started to beat myself up, I’m like, Wait, wait, wait, what do I want? I want to like who I am. I want to like the company that I keep. And I love this too because Matthew McConaughey just came up with a book and he’s one of my heroes in life. And so I love reading it and he talks a lot about that of we all talk to ourselves all the time, all the time. And so for him, he calls himself McConaughey. That’s his name when he’s talking to himself.
Rachele: He’s like, “Come on McConaughey.” He’s like, “You can do this.” Or if he’s like [inaudible 01:03:26], he’s like, “Come on McConaughey, you can forgive that. You can forgive that. We can do it.” And I just was like, Gosh, I love that. I love that. And I just think it’s a realization, and in some ways that helped most again. I was going through like a real traumatic breakup, it just crushed me and I lost, [inaudible 01:03:45] was not in that time and I was working with a coach, and she was like, “Rach, I want you to start writing down everyday, write down 10 reasons why you love yourself.” And I was like, “You want me to do what? I don’t know if I could …” But I had so much pain, I wanted to feel better so bad that I was like, “Okay, I’ll do whatever it takes.” And I started doing it. And to this day, that is one of the most powerful life practices that I think we can do.
Rachele: And I think sometimes people are like, “Oh, that’s too, I can’t do that. That’s weird.” And I always say, I’m like, “Yeah, but so was riding a bike.” The first time you did it, it felt really weird and awkward, but you did it. And now you’re a master at riding bike. So if you want to master this, I want to have a good relationship with myself, doing things like that are so helpful. And even if you’re to the point of like, “Man, I can’t do that, Rach.” All I would say is write down three reasons every day why you’re proud of yourself. And you’ll start to realize that those are the same reasons.
Rachele: If you can be proud of yourself for something and I also always talk about like, “Hey, if I asked you to write down three reasons why you love your best friend, it wouldn’t feel weird at all. You could do it like that.” So why is it any different with ourselves? And so yeah, I think if anyone listening out there is struggling or just wants to have a better relationship with themselves, better self-esteem, better confidence, try it out. It absolutely is one of the most powerful, every time I do it, I cry. When I’m stressed out, when I don’t get the job, when I’m fighting with someone, I always just take a second and just do that and I’m a better human after.
Charan: Gosh. Oh my gosh, I love it. I wish we could talk forever. Oh, as we’ve been discovering. This is amazing. I love that. That’s a great note to even wrap things up and end on, just about the need and the desire and the importance to love yourself. I want to ask you one final question though if that’s okay.
Rachele: Okay. No, I’m done. I’m sorry.
Charan: Okay, that’s cool. All right. Well hey, this has been great. A great, awkward way to wrap up the conversation. I guess we’ll end it.
Rachele: No, please.
Rachele Brooke Smith’s Advice to Her Younger Self
Charan: Oh, oh yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, I didn’t think you were serious at all. So if you were to give advice to your younger self, that self that was so full of anxiety, that self that was so, had that need to achieve so badly, what would that advice be?
Rachele: I love this question. I get asked it often and I think it’s always a little different depending on where I’m at in my life, but there’s always a sense of this, one, stop stressing out so much, you’re going to be okay, actually, you’re going to be more than okay. Things will turn out so much more incredible than you could ever imagine. And two, just going and find way more ways to have more fun because you’re going to look back on your life and wish you had more fun along the way. And the more fun you have, the more you’re going to be so fun to be around and therefore people will want to work with you and give you opportunities because you’re just so fun to be around.
Rachele: And so I think there’s this common theme of like, “Look, I’m not perfect, I’m so far from it. I still have my days where I get stressed out, I feel overwhelmed, I’m pushing so hard to make something happen super fast because I just want it so bad yesterday.” But then I have to take a second and really to remind myself and my younger self that like, “Hey, gratitude is one of our greatest superpowers.” And just I love heroes, I love the story of heroes, one of my dream roles is a Wonder Woman-type of role. I always relate to the stories of superheroes. And I always say of study … To my younger self, and to everybody out there listening, the more that we study the stories of people who have achieved greatness in their life, not just greatness in their career, but full-life greatness, their career, their relationships, their health, their wealth, their everything, there is common thread between all of them of they all went through extreme challenges, and they all figured out a way to be able to overcome those challenges, learn the lessons, but do it in a way where they enjoyed it.
Rachele: They had fun doing it. When you’re watching Wonder Woman, there’s not this sense of … She just has this grace and this ease and this playfulness to everything she does. And so I think the more we can let go of again, the more we can let go of these timelines that we have on ourselves, to get something done super fast, yes we have responsibilities, yes, we want to make things happen. But I think we sabotage our happiness, we sabotage our health, we sabotage our success, we sabotage our relationships by trying to force things to happen in the way that we think that they should. However, everything great that has happened in my life didn’t happen the way that I thought it would.
Rachele: It ended up happening even better, but I had to let go. I had to let go and I had to just like breathe and enjoy the process. I wish there was a better way to say enjoy the journey because it’s so overused, but-
Charan: It is. But here’s the deal. I really believe in giving God the outcomes.
Rachele: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah.
Charan: And when you do that, just the act of doing that, just the act of surrendering, I know one of the authors that we talked about that we really like is Michael Singer. And he is a big believer in surrendering, surrendering to life. And it doesn’t mean that you don’t have responsibilities. Of course, you’re going to be doing your things. It’s not like you don’t have any choices to make. But the point is understanding, Hey, there are certain things we can’t control, have control over. But I love what you were saying about not trying to force everything or not trying to force a particular outcome. Give God the outcomes or give the universe the outcomes, whatever you would like for it to be for you.
Charan: Give the outcomes away and focus on just filling yourself up with love right now and then just enjoying life. And it’s unbelievable how things just manifest and work out for you in the most beautiful way possible, so I love it.
Rachele: [crosstalk 01:11:14]. If someone’s listening right now and they hear that, they’re like, “Well, I don’t know what makes me happy. I don’t even know how to find joy because I feel miserable.” I would say just start, so many times we talk us out of doing these things that would make us happy or light us up. And sometimes when we’re at … When I’ve been at my worst, I have this tendency to, “I don’t want to talk to people, I don’t want to go hang out with friends, I don’t want to go do all these things.” And I just sulk and it’s the exact opposite of what I know that I need.
Rachele: If I were to just call a friend or just go on a walk outside or just watch it, do something that will make me feel a little better. So whether it’s like you want to start a new business, you want to start a new workout plan, you want to start something, I just always go back to start, just do the brave thing, let go of the outcome because outcomes will get in our way like Charan said and focus on just every time you take action, you win. That’s it. It doesn’t matter what happens, every time you take action, you win because you decided to. Because you decided that that’s … That’s my probably I would say huge rule for life that I started living by that made the biggest difference and has allowed me to do the bravest things and to accomplish incredible things.
Rachele: But I wasn’t focused on the big, scary outcome. I was just focused on, Okay, how do I just take a small action right now? Even during this podcast, I was terrified before. I was terrified, Charan, and I was so scared, but I was like, “You know what? I’m just going to turn on the camera and I’m just going to start.”
Charan: There’s no way you were terrified. There’s just no way. But thank you. Thank you for even thinking that. I was terrified. I was like, “Is my voice going to crack? What’s going to happen?” It probably has. But honestly Rachele, I appreciate so much the time that you took to talk to me and share your thoughts with me. And here’s the deal, I really feel like so much of what you shared will resonate with our audience big-time and I’m so grateful that you were able to come in, share your wisdom and your journey and your story and your struggles as well because life is not without struggles.
Charan: And we need to acknowledge, Hey, you know what? Yeah, we got struggles. We got tough times. But we also have some amazingly beautiful times, and we couldn’t celebrate those together as well, so but thanks again Rachele. Thanks so much.
Rachele: Yeah, and we win.
Charan: No, what were you going to say? What were you going to say? Final thoughts.
Rachele: I was just going to say we wouldn’t appreciate loving literally if we never knew what hard or bad felt. We would not understand what happiness felt like. And so again, it’s overused, but the sweet just isn’t as sweet without the sour. And we lived in a world that was all oops, we had no challenges. It was just all great rainbows and roses. We would not be able to appreciate it. They would not seem beautiful to us. It would seem boring. And so I always tried to remind myself that when I’m going the super challenge, so yeah.
Charan: Yeah. You guys take the sweet and the sour. I’m going to go have some sweet and sour chicken right now just to [crosstalk 01:14:43].
Charan: Or some Sour Patch Kids, one of the two.
Rachele: Yeah, I love it. I love it. Please [crosstalk 01:14:50]
Charan: Awesome. Well, thanks so much. Yeah, seriously, you’re the best. I can’t wait to act with you again which hopefully we’re going to be doing very, very soon. I’m so excited about that.
Rachele: Yes, more comedy sketches coming soon from Charan and I.
Charan: Yes. Yes, absolutely. Awesome. Well, thanks again, Rachele.
Charan: Thanks again for joining us everyone listening to The Lemonade Stand Podcast, have a wonderful day. Thanks so much for listening to the Lemonade Stand Podcast and we hope you enjoyed this episode. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast on whatever platform you use to be alerted when we release new episodes. We’d also love to hear your feedback and reviews and if you or someone you know has an awesome lemonade stand story, please reach out to us on social media and let us know. Thanks so much and have a great day.