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Marie Forleo: This is Marie Forleo and you are watching MarieTV, the place to be to have a business and life you love. And I am so excited today. You have the best treat ever. Almost as good as my dress. Actually, it’s even better than my dress. And I love my dress.
Marie Forleo: So, you probably know this. One of my dearest, closest friends in the world happens to be a global brand in and of herself. She’s a New York Times bestselling author, she’s changed millions of lives around the world and continues to, and she is just at the tip of her career in my opinion. It’s no other than the amazing Kris Carr. Kris.
Kris Carr: Hi honey.
Marie Forleo: Hi. I love having you here, this is just like … Like I could talk to you forever and ever and we’re going to obviously share some really good stuff. But what I want to talk to you about today, I’ve heard you speak. You’re one of my closest friends. We have our matte meetings on Skype. When I’m wearing my glasses, I roll out of bed. And when you’re on stage and when you’re in the public eye, 99.9%, if not 100% of the time you’re talking about, obviously green juice, healthy living, what it takes to really have an amazing life from the inside out but focused in the health and wellness area. And what I find fascinating about you is you are quite a savvy businesswoman.
Marie Forleo: So what I’d love to talk about on MarieTV today, if it’s cool, if we can dive back in time and talk a little bit about how Kris Carr got to be Kris Carr, and how you built this thing. Because I know from the outside people say, “Oh, she’s so beautiful,” and, “Oh, she’s got this big brand and it seems like it’s happened so easily.” But one thing I know about you is that this has been probably over a decade in the making. Right?
Kris Carr: Absolutely.
Marie Forleo: And I’m sure people look at you now and think that while you’re very, very good at revealing your own struggles, your own challenges, places in your life that you’re bumping up against and being gracious enough and vulnerable enough to let us all see what you’re going through, I think sometimes people don’t know really the business side of it. Right? Because you’ll reveal certain kind of challenges, but it’s just … if business isn’t your topic to talk about, there’s no real reason to talk about it. But we’re going to talk about it today.
Kris Carr: We’re going to talk about it.
Marie Forleo: Let’s talk about it today. And then, one of the other things that I love and just admire about you is your unique voice. So before we wrap up today, let’s put a little mental pin in for us that I want to talk about why it’s so important to have your own voice. Because I see a lot of people that love you and admire you, and whether they’re aware of it or not, I see them trying to be you a bit. And I think that one of the reasons that you’re so successful is because you’re so unique and you’re so authentic.
Kris Carr: Thank you, baby.
Marie Forleo: You’re welcome, but it’s the truth though. And so a really big message for me that I want to get across and I’m sure, we’ll talk about this later, is how important it is to have your own voice and to retain your own voice through your message, whatever you’re doing in the world.
Kris Carr: Oh girl, well you know what, you said something at the top. And for me it wasn’t a business. It wasn’t a business until really the last two years. It was a soul project, a heart project, it was eye on the prize, and the prize has always been helping people. And that’s the currency that I received back.
Kris Carr: But I invested all of my time, all of my own personal finances into this movement, if you want to call it brand, and there was no other choice for me. When I got the call, I picked up the phone and I was like, “All right. I’m ready, let’s go. Where do we start?” And it started with Crazy Sexy Cancer, but at the time it was mass emails that I was sending to family and friends, and they were just updates to see how I was doing.
Marie Forleo: Right, to make sure that the beloved Kris was still alive.
Kris Carr: Yeah. Alive and kicking and funny and a little raunchy. You know?
Marie Forleo: And that’s one of the things I love about you, is you love to get a little raunchy. Especially with me. So basically, and I love hearing this, is it wasn’t started as a business. It was started as a movement. It was started as a labor of love and a labor of your soul.
Kris Carr: Absolutely.
Marie Forleo: And really to be of service. And I think what you said is really interesting, and I want to make sure that people really get it. Like, for you, from your point of view, this really didn’t turn into a business until two years ago.
Kris Carr: Two years ago, and a lot of money invested. And invested with joy, because I knew I was reaching so many people. And when it became more of a business, it was really because first and foremost, you got to juice and cucumbers can be pricey when they’re organic.
Marie Forleo: Oh my goodness they are. I sometimes look at my little juice, I’m like, “Holy shizzle.” Like, it’s a lot. Yeah.
Kris Carr: And then also to get out there as far as I wanted to get out there. I can’t do this alone. We have an amazing well oiled machine, and my team members are my life. And so to make them happy and healthy and prosperous, I needed to turn the tide and make it more of a business.
Marie Forleo: So, let me ask you this, so where did the money come from for you? Like, how did you even have enough money to eat and to buy some cucumbers and to juice those cucumbers when you first started out?
Kris Carr: I had a whole other business and a whole other career prior. So …
Marie Forleo: I know that. But I don’t know if everybody else knows a little bit about your background. So let’s … It was …
Kris Carr: I was an actress.
Marie Forleo: Yep.
Kris Carr: And I did a lot of TV commercials.
Marie Forleo: Awesome.
Kris Carr: I taught at NYU.
Marie Forleo: And?
Kris Carr: I had a photography business.
Marie Forleo: And?
Kris Carr: And I was a dancer and a choreographer.
Marie Forleo: So a little multi passionate nature happening.
Kris Carr: Amen.
Marie Forleo: Amen.
Kris Carr: And I always was a squirrel and saved my nuts. And when it was time for me to really make an investment in, first and foremost, my health and well being and secondly into my writing and having the space to be able to put my creativity out there, I sold my apartment that I had, and I also sold everything else that I had. And that’s how I started to …
Marie Forleo: Is that how you funded your movie?
Kris Carr: Yeah.
Marie Forleo: Was that, like, that was the funding of the movie?
Kris Carr: First it was credit cards, then it was the rest. Then it was my apartment, and then TLC bought it and gave me the finishing funds for it.
Marie Forleo: Amazing. And so that’s when, kind of, the engine start, the wheels really started to take off.
Kris Carr: Yeah.
Marie Forleo: So there was something that coming in, and you had a product that was starting to go out, and which, of course, sparked requests for speaking engagements and things like that.
Kris Carr: Absolutely, and then I also, I sold the book at the same time because I knew that I had to …
Marie Forleo: Which was Crazy Sexy Cancer Tips?
Kris Carr: Cancer Tips.
Marie Forleo: Right.
Kris Carr: And I knew that this was a perfect time to have a platform. It was going to air. I had a lot more to say, sort of like the how to manual. The shizzle hits the fan, this is what you do ladies. And …
Marie Forleo: Let me ask you this. I know I’m interrupting you. Was there a point when you … So you made Crazy. And did you come up with the name? So Crazy Sexy Cancer Updates, it was kind of your updates to your friends and your family about you.
Kris Carr: Yes.
Marie Forleo: When you had that name, Crazy Sexy Cancer, did something in you, because you’re very good with language. You’re obviously a super talented writer, and you know I always compliment you on that because I love getting your emails. I love getting your emails that you write to me personally, and I love getting the emails that you send out to all of us, and I just, I savor every bite. Did you know when you came across that name … because that’s the same thing with me, with Make Every Man Want You, I was like, “Oh, that (beep) is good!” So did … Oh! So you knew that, so something in you-
Kris Carr: I knew it. I knew that it was going to resonate with the people that I wanted it to resonate with. Because when I was first diagnosed, everything was very heavy, it was geared to a much older set of women, and I did not see myself in the media and in the literature out there. So I said, “I need to make it for me, first and foremost. And I bet there are a lot of ladies who would enjoy this material as well.”
Marie Forleo: Awesome.
Kris Carr: And I wanted to bite the stigma. I wanted to shake it up and say crazy is empowering, it’s full. It’s full of life. And let’s go there.
Marie Forleo: It’s thinking outside of the box, which is I love one of your great little … You’re so good. One of the things I love about you too, is you’re so good with your media soundbites. I remember one of the first dinners that we had and I was like, “Girl you got … your (beep) is tight!” Like you always, like when you talk about crazy’s like boom bo boom bo boom. And I’m like that is awesome. It’s a true sign of a pro.
Kris Carr: Well thank you, I had a lot of media training actually.
Marie Forleo: Did you?
Kris Carr: For my first tour and all of the national media that I did. And-
Marie Forleo: What was like one nugget that you really, if you remember, one nugget from media training?
Kris Carr: I’ll give you a really important one. When you’re on a TV show, it doesn’t matter who’s interviewing you. You have one job. You have to bring it back to your product and your mission. Even if it’s Oprah. You have to grab the material, grab the interview, and bring it back. When you’re out there trying to sell a book or when you’re out there marketing a movie and whatnot. If it’s a long form interview and you and I can sit and talk, that’s great. But I think oftentimes you can get off track because the interviewer might be like, “Oh you know what? I want to talk about flowers now.” And you’re like, “You know, it’s so funny. I talk about flowers on page 33 of my book.”
Marie Forleo: I love it. So it’s about always staying on message?
Kris Carr: Stay on message.
Marie Forleo: And you notice that too with politicians. I love watching politics and the presidential debates and stuff. And I just love kind of watching what happens when they’re asked a question and they’re like, “Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.” And they bring it right back to whatever the hell they want to say.
Kris Carr: It’s your time, and you have to own it.
Marie Forleo: Very cool. Okay, so we talked about the startings and the beginnings. How much doubt have you gone through as you are building this movement and, again, this brand, which now has become a brand, but in the midst of actually building it, it’s just more of your life’s work. It’s the thing that you have to get out into the world.
Kris Carr: A lot of doubt. Especially since my husband and I, who was my editor at the time, decided to leave our careers and move up to upstate New York where we could no longer be freelancers, and put everything into helping people. And it’s great until the bank account starts to go tick, tick, tick, tick, tick. And I wasn’t taking a paycheck. He wasn’t taking a paycheck. We were making money and paying the people that were working with us.
Marie Forleo: So anything that would come in, it would just basically go right back out.
Kris Carr: Every speaking engagement, every book deal, everything went out. And we were … We had many long conversations of, “Should we go back to Brooklyn?” And I wouldn’t go back, and he ultimately supported my desire.
Marie Forleo: Now I want to talk about something that may be a little difficult, and I know many, many people go through, many of my viewers go through. Did you have naysayers? Did you have people that told you, “Kris, it’s real cute what you’re trying to do.” Or, “This is real great, but you got to go get a real job.” Or, “What the hell are you doing?” Or, “Stop this.” Did you have that?
Kris Carr: Oh, absolutely. In fact, I had TV producers say, “Hello sweet girl who suffers, and I feel bad that you’re a victim. But those words together are volatile and they should never be. And cancer’s ugly. Okay? So … “
Marie Forleo: Wait, they told you your Crazy Sexy Cancer, they said those words are volatile together?
Kris Carr: “That’ll never happen. You’ll never see somebody like you on TV talking about cancer the way you want to.”
Marie Forleo: Meaning … So, okay, you went out and pitched and that’s what you got back?
Kris Carr: From network after network after network. And, until TLC, which TLC’s a little frisky.
Marie Forleo: TLC’s awesome.
Kris Carr: Sometimes. And they were like, “That’s a really cool thing. Let’s check this out.” But I also had family members who were very doubtful. And actually a family member who disowned me after everything came out. And we still don’t have a relationship. But at the end of the day, I do what I do for a much bigger reason than my ego or relationships that don’t … work.
Marie Forleo: You don’t need. Yeah. They’re obviously … Wow. And do you have that thing, I happen to be … Like I’m a very sensitive person. My intuition is one of the things that, I feel, drives my life and allows me to make really great decisions and also allows me to really work with people in a way that’s effective. But it’s also my Achilles Heel. You know what I mean? So I feel like I feel things much more and they can like, “Oh,” hit me in the gut and almost take me out for like a day or two where momma has to be like, “All right, I need to go recover a little bit.” Do you have that or are you a bit more resilient?
Kris Carr: I love the word resilience. That’s such a beautiful word. It’s my favorite word actually. No, I feel very deeply. And I will get under my covers and rage and cry and go into the field and scream at the trees like, “Trees! You tree!” You know? And then I find a way to bring it back into the teaching.
Marie Forleo: Yeah. Yeah. No, that’s really, really good. So any other big struggles or stumbles that people don’t know about? Like, has there been some big meltdowns where you guys in the back of Crazy Sexy are like, “Oh. Holy (beep). It’s all coming down.” But like you can’t really … It’s not necessary to bring it out to the public.
Kris Carr: Well, there’s always those things when you’re launching something where everyone thinks its great, but behind the scenes …
Marie Forleo: It’s mayhem.
Kris Carr: It’s falling apart and you have a very large hemorrhoid and you have to sit on an ice pack. You know? Yes. So, yes. When diet came out, we actually sold out all of the books during launch week.
Marie Forleo: I remember that.
Kris Carr: So I was going all around the country, and I would literally be at a signing with 300 or 400 people, and Deepak Chopra is sending out a tweet and there’s no books in bookstores, there’s no books on Amazon. And we were very close to assuming that we were going to get onto the New York Times Bestseller list, and …
Marie Forleo: Yes, the white unicorn of all white unicorns.
Kris Carr: The white unicorn with the golden horn. And I was like, “Are they at Costcos? I will rent a van.” Like, “We need books.” So that was really hard. But the meltdowns, you get through them.
Marie Forleo: No, we all have them.
Kris Carr: Absolutely.
Marie Forleo: But I think that there’s … I think that sometimes though, anyone who does anything somewhat publicly, people see you and obviously you’re not going to have a meltdown in public. But they have an assumption that nothing ever goes wrong, or things must always be so easy or it’s easy for them. And I think one of the beautiful things, especially about our friendship is, we always get to hear from each other about the stuff that doesn’t always go so right. Like running out of books when Deepak’s about to tweet, and there’s lots of people that want to buy them and they just can’t. And it can feel really frustrating. You’re like, “Gosh.”
Kris Carr: Absolutely. And then you just kind of take a breath and say, “I will get through this.”
Marie Forleo: Yes.
Kris Carr: And it works out.
Marie Forleo: Let’s talk about voice.
Kris Carr: Okay.
Marie Forleo: Because I know that’s something that you’re really passionate about, something that we talk a lot about, and authenticity in your voice. Has it been a journey for you to find your own voice? Or do you find, like, even when you sent out those early Crazy Sexy Cancer Updates. I know you’re … You’re probably one of the funniest people I know. Has your voice been refined over time? Did you ever find yourself reading anyone else and morphing into their voice? Or even having the temptation to go there?
Kris Carr: That’s naughty. That’s naughty time. You got to go sit in the corner when you do that. I actually don’t subscribe to very many newsletters. I only subscribe to the people who actually teach me something, feed me something. When I look to other people is when I completely lose myself. And I think, to your point, the evolution was not about me finding my voice. It was about me giving myself permission to use my voice.
Marie Forleo: Love that. Oh Kris Carr that was so good! Oh, that was so good! I don’t know if we can make it a tweetable or do something with that. We’re going to put that below. I want to make love to that statement.
Kris Carr: Spank.
Marie Forleo: So it’s not about finding your voice, it’s about giving yourself permission to use your voice.
Kris Carr: Yes.
Marie Forleo: So did you censor yourself a little bit more in the beginning? Has it become more you?
Kris Carr: Definitely more me. A lot more me now. And in the beginning, I don’t think I really knew what I was doing. And there were a lot of typos too.
Marie Forleo: Did you do a lot of exclamation points?
Kris Carr: Oh, so many. And that is my number one pet peeve. Like, take it down. Just an exclamation point when you really need it.
Marie Forleo: I was awful. My first ebook had so many exclamation points, because I was a cheerleader in high school. So I am really freaking enthusiastic. And it’s like my natural DNA. And I’m like, “You got to listen to this!!!” Very funny.
Kris Carr: Totally. Same. Exact same.
Marie Forleo: Yeah.
Kris Carr: And then, now it’s … honestly it’s very easy, because I can do a blog post in 20 minutes. And send it to my editor and she’ll … I did one this morning for our newsletter intro and I sent it to her and I said, “Does it need anything else? Do you like it?” She’s like, “I’m bawling, it’s so good.”
Marie Forleo: Aww.
Kris Carr: And I go, “Wow, it was?” Because you’re in that place where you’re just letting yourself flow and be real and vulnerable and … But not vulnerable, “Oh my God, protect me. I’m a little dangerous.” It’s you can be vulnerable but still come from a teaching point. And I think you’re … Nobody can ever be me. I’m really good at that. I’ve got that (beep) nailed down. But you, you out there, you are so much better as yourself. And I think that’s when you start to really build a following, as opposed to I have copy editors who work for me who say, “It frustrates me that clients come in and they say, ‘Just make me sound like Kris Carr. I know you work with her.'” And that’s such a … it’s so bad for their businesses.
Marie Forleo: Yes. And that’s really the key point. It is bad for their businesses. And I’ve had some talks with people about the similar kind of thing. I’m like, “God, you are so genius. And you, and the only you that is ever going to be on this planet. Like, let’s get that out. Because you trying to do anything else, your business is going to fall flat.” Even though it seems like the easier thing to do, people never get the results that they expect, and they’re always feeling like a shadow of someone. And no one needs to feel like that.
Kris Carr: And it’s so great that you teach that because … And I think it comes back to the earlier point, which is, just give yourself permission. Just stop thinking that you’re not enough.
Marie Forleo: Yes.
Kris Carr: And that you have to be Marie or Kris or Danielle LaPorte. You don’t. People don’t want that. We have that covered. But they want you, and they want you really badly.
Marie Forleo: Yeah. And when I see people being fully them, like, it literally brings me to tears.
Kris Carr: It’s exciting.
Marie Forleo: It is. It’s really, really exciting. And you can hear just that original, it’s like a snowflake, coming out. And just it’s really, really moving. Very cool.
Marie Forleo: The last thing I want to ask you for today is, you’ve been on this incredible journey and there’s so many people in our audience who are just starting out, just at the very beginning. There’s something they believe in, there’s something that they want to get out into the world, there’s something that they really want to make real. And make it sustainable and make an impact on the world. If you could either look back and tell yourself three things or say something to them that would really make a difference when they’re at the beginning of this journey, what would you say?
Kris Carr: Wow. That’s such a great question. I think it’s really important for us to dream big. And to see it and to let yourself journal and walk and think about it and say, “Oh wouldn’t it be neat if that happened?” And, “I can see myself in those shoes doing that thing. Oh, that feels good.” Because your cells start to vibrate and you start to have that inner smile.
Kris Carr: So be in that place and then go home and get really clear about what you’re going to do today. Like those little actionable steps, and not saying I have to be everything to every person. Right? What is the thing that I do? And just get really focused about doing that. As opposed to being way up in the clouds and … I think you and I were talking about wanting to have a brand that’s for men and women and ponies and everybody.
Marie Forleo: Unicorns.
Kris Carr: Yeah. It’s like, “No. I work with women. And I work with women from this age to that age. And teenagers? They don’t want to be with me. Over a certain age, they’re like, ‘Good sweetheart.'” You know what I mean? I have my demographic and this is how we jam. And so get really clear about what you want, and then … I don’t know about you. And you teach me this all the time, because you keep me on the no train. I can’t metabolize more than three things a day. That’s it. Three things.
Marie Forleo: Yep. Yeah, no, that’s great. So have that big vision, get clear on exactly what your thing is, and then take some small steps but not too many where you’re overwhelming them. Yeah, I love it. And I think it’s also about really having faith and keeping the faith and doing what you need to do and to stay on your hustle as things grow. Because people really, really, really overestimate. They think they can build something huge in like a hot minute. And for most of the successful people I know, there was like such a long period of hustling and nobody knowing what they’re doing. And they’re just doing the good work day in and day out before something pops. I think it’s a really important lesson.
Marie Forleo: I just adore you. Thank you so much. So I can’t imagine that anyone in the MarieTV audience doesn’t know who you are. But if they want some more Kris Carr, what’s the best place that they should go to?
Kris Carr: Crazysexylife.com.
Marie Forleo: Yeah, and definitely sign up for … definitely sign up for Kris’s newsletter, because it’s awesome, if you’re not on it. It is just such juicy soul vitamins. And you guys publish about once a week, right?
Kris Carr: Yes, once a week.
Marie Forleo: Yeah, it’s beautiful. Really, really beautiful. So I’m going to challenge you, and I’m also going to challenge myself to get my hair out of my lip gloss, which you know happens with us girls. We get hair in our lip gloss. So on MarieTV we always like you to take action, because insight without action is worthless. And you know that, because you’re a loyal watcher. So here’s what I want you to do.
Marie Forleo: In the comments below, and by the way, when I say below, I mean at marieforleo.com, because that’s where all the action happens after the episode. Tell me the one specific insight, I’m sure there’s more than one, but one specific insight that you got out of this interview today, and how it’s going to impact you moving ahead in your business and your life. I want to hear as much specificity as possible. The reason I ask for that is it helps us all gain from your genius, and put that action into play.
Marie Forleo: Thank you so much for watching. If you like this video, like it and subscribe to the channel. And, of course, share it with all of your friends. And that’s what we got for you today on MarieTV. Stay on your game, keep going for your dreams, and I’ll catch you next time. Thanks everybody.
Speaker 3: Hey, RHH Live is coming up. Are you coming? Go to rhhlive.com for details.
Speaker 4: Kris, can you just clap for me?
Marie Forleo: That was like a mosquito came …