Shasta Nelson – Friendship Expert and Author of The Business of Friendship
Kara Goldin: Hi everybody. It’s Kara from Unstoppable and I’m so excited to have Shasta Nelson here today. And just a little bit about Shasta, in case you guys don’t know. First of all, we’re going to talk a lot about her newest venture and she is an experienced author. As many of you know, I have my book coming out and Shasta and I have gotten to know each other a little bit. She’s given me a little tidbits and advice because this is her third book. I’m like so jealous about, I just all, like the mountain she’s climbed to all of the knowledge and really launching all of these and her other books are great too. But this book is really, really exciting, the book is called The Business of Friendship and we’ll talk a little bit more about that. But just a little bit about Shasta. So Shasta Nelson is a friendship expert and leading voice on loneliness and creating healthy relationships. You know, honestly, I think, especially we’re recording this during COVID and I think it’s at a time when, really, really relevant to talk about this. And I know I’ve been having sort of side conversations with a lot of my friends on this topic. So I’m very, very excited to talk to Shasta about this, but she’s been working to remove the stigma of, and reduce our experience of loneliness for over 12 years as a community facilitator author. And she’s also, I’ve seen you speak before as a keynote speaker. But basically Shasta, you may have also caught her on the Katy Couric’s, Katie Show.
She’s been on Fox Business, lots of other shows along the way. Her, like I mentioned, this is her third book
Kara Goldin: The first and second books, the names of those?
Shasta Nelson: The first one is Friendships Don’t Just Happen. And that’s about making friends as an adult. And then the second one is Frientimacy, how to deepen friendships for lifelong health and happiness.
Kara Goldin: I love it, love it, love it. So welcome Shasta. [crosstalk 00:02:42]
Shasta Nelson: Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Kara Goldin: So take us back to the beginning and how did you become the friendship expert?
Shasta Nelson: Oh my goodness. Well, and it’s so funny that you would ask that because one of my beginning stories, not the beginning, but one of the beginning stories includes you. And I was … It started by me really, I was a life coach and I was doing a lot of work with amazing female clients. And they were just going for big goals, wanting new jobs, wanting to make big decisions about relationships.
And I would always ask in those conversations, like, who’s supporting you? Like how, like, who are your friends right now? And what are they saying? Because I knew that their success in whatever they were really talking about and hiring me for, came down to what their friends were saying and how much support they felt. And almost to a person, these amazing women were just like, yeah, I don’t really confide in these kinds of things. I don’t really have that kind of friendship with anyone. Or I just went through a divorce and yeah, it feels like all the friendships are kind of up in the air. Or I just moved, you know, six months ago and kind of like …
And the stories just kept being so repetitive that I was like going to bed at night being like, these are amazing kick ass people from all around the country and the same theme is that they don’t feel like they have close friends. And so that’s what kind of put me on a path of going to bed one night being like, who do I know in Chicago that I can introduce to this client? And I was like, we need a way to like, match make our friends and be like, I have a friend in Chicago I can share with your friend in Chicago and like get them together. So I started a community 2008 for, called girlfriendscircle.com. And it was like a match.com an early match.com for female friends, kind of a concept.
Kara Goldin: I love it.
Shasta Nelson: One of the first big events we did here in San Francisco was a Sex in The City movie screening, an advanced movie screening. And somebody I know reached out to you at Hint and asked if you would be a sponsor. And I remember, I was like, why would they sponsor? I’m like, I’m just like some girl doing some events.
Kara Goldin: I love it.
Shasta Nelson: But sure enough, you not only were like giving, you were like, yes, we’re going to give Hint water to everybody who comes to this screening, but you’re like, we’re going to send people there to make sure it’s chilled and we’re going to hand it out. And I remember just being like, I just have to say, thank you again. I know I wrote something way back in the day, but those were the early days. And you were just like, yep showing up for that.
Kara Goldin: Yeah, totally I love it. I love it.
Shasta Nelson: So thank you. Yeah. And ever since then I’ve been gathering women, doing retreats and trips all around the world. We do international trips. I teach, I speak and yeah, I just keep writing about it. I can’t get off the subject.
Kara Goldin: I love it. I love it, love it. So you wrote your first book and like, what do you think was the biggest challenges that you saw? I’m sure you had a lot of learnings just from being out speaking and talking to people after they wrote the book. What were the key things that you were hearing from people?
Shasta Nelson: Yeah. So one of the first things I heard that prompted my first book, Friendships Don’t Just Happen, was so many of us are lonely and we just want these close friendships, but we don’t know how to get them. Like, we can’t just walk up to each other in the grocery store and be like, “Hey, you look fun. Let’s be friends.” And like exchange phone numbers. We don’t know how to like, hit on each other. We don’t have like flirting for friends. You know? I mean, all the stuff that we, I mean we, dating is hard too, but we have like a protocol and rituals, and expectations around it.
And with friendship it was really challenging to figure out, how do you make friends? So the first book was for that. But then when I was out speaking about it, I kept hearing over and over and over that for so many of us, and this really has shaped my work forever since then, and done, a lot of my research and my studies have been shaped by continuing to hear that for so many of us, our loneliness, it’s not from a lack of interaction.
Like actually most of us have a network. Most of us are peopled out, actually. There’s a lot of people coming home exhausted from people. We’re doing customer service or serving people all day in healthcare and teaching and like we’re coming home and we don’t identify as lonely because we’re just like, I just want to shut the door and be by myself. And so it’s not for lack of interaction that most of us are lonely, but it’s for lack of intimacy. It’s for lack of having a few close people who like see us in ways that feel really good. And so I’ve really been about helping remind us that loneliness doesn’t mean you’re some hermit out in the mountains that have no social skills and no friends.
Loneliness means you wish that you had a little bit more deep connection in your life, and you wish you felt more supported, and you wish you felt like you had those people that were there for you no matter what. And statistically speaking, most of us don’t have that. The studies are really unfortunate and heartbreaking. It’s been really, I’ve been in this field now for over a decade. But the last couple years, the research, we’re finally getting way more voices in healthcare, and sociologists. Cigna just came out with a huge, one of the biggest studies last year. 61% of us report feeling lonely on a regular basis, and that’s before COVID. And so the bulk of us don’t know that we really have somebody who sees us. And so that loneliness is really prevalent for all of us. And it’s important for us to like kind of name that and say, “Okay, all right. So I need some more connection in my life. What do I do with that?”
Kara Goldin: And did you see mostly women reaching out to you about this too? I’d be so curious to sort of know …
Shasta Nelson: Yeah. That’s a great question.
Kara Goldin: … You know, that statistic. Because I think that, you know, I actually happened to have a lot of men that are friends of mine and that that’s sort of a whole other side of this as well, where I feel like there’s this concept that you can’t actually be friends with people that you’re not dating. Right? And I feel like there’s, oftentimes the stigma around that too, where it’s … Anyway, I’d be so curious.
Shasta Nelson: Yeah. So much in that question and I love it. Yeah. So first of all, one of the things I’m super passionate about is that the need for intimacy and relationship is a human need, it’s not a women’s issue. And so it really bothers me that we have treated this like a women’s subject for so long. Just when we kind of generalize, we think of friendship and we think of a bunch of girls hanging out. And so we’ve done a huge disservice to men in general by not giving permission, encouraging, expecting, teaching, training, modeling for men to have deep friendships. And some of my favorite emails over the years have been men writing me, who have read my books and are like, I wish that we could do friendship like this. I wish we didn’t have to have the guise of getting together to watch a sports game to actually connect or to be vulnerable with each other.
And so the need is so, so huge there. And I would, I can get on a whole soap box on men in general and their friendships. I think it’s one of the reasons they die younger than women. I think it’s, I think that’s why they marry, remarry after death and divorce quicker because the only place we’ve told them it’s okay to have intimacy is in romantic relationships. And so it’s way, you know, women get to have a lot more of our emotional needs met in our friendships than men we’ve often allowed to do. So yeah, men’s friendships are so important to me. And we’ve often continued, my previous publisher in fact, like we just have marketed the books to women because they’re like, men aren’t going to be interested. Men aren’t going to buy the books. And I’m really excited that my new book is co-ed and it is in the business section, which hopefully will make it more readable for the men.
And the science is showing that men are scoring lonelier in the workplace than women. So it is a really, really big need that we need to be addressing and talking about. And your question about mixing the genders, I am a big fan of that too. And so I teach a friendship on a triangle. That all relationships start on the bottom of that triangle and as they increase the three requirements of relationship, they move up the triangle. And so I always say, it’s your job to identify how far up the triangle you want some of those friendships to be, and where.
And having that conversation with your significant other and all that kind of stuff. But absolutely, we should be able to have friendships with anybody. If we were saying that you could never be friends with anybody you might be romantically attracted to, where that’s a total bummer for people who aren’t heteronormative.
Kara Goldin: Totally.
Shasta Nelson: I mean, it’s just, there’s so many, yeah, just big limitations with that. I think the bigger thing is just, let’s be thoughtful and intentional and make sure that what we’re most afraid of is the threatening that romantic relationship. And understanding what the difference between those two is, what they are, and how we can protect both, I think is a more important question.
Kara Goldin: I think that’s, I think that’s huge. So today, most people that I know are working remotely right now. And although I do have some people who are essential workers that are out working, but the majority of people are working remotely. So how can we feel close when we’re working remotely?
Shasta Nelson: Yeah. Well, let me back up one question and just answer, maybe let me start with just naming what those three requirements of relationship are. Because then we know that those same three requirements that I referenced in that triangle, whether we’re in person in an office, or on a team or out on the floor of the hospital, or at the retail center or wherever we are, or if we’re remote, it’s the same three things. And so how we do those three things might look different, but it’s the same three things that bond people. So when we look all the science, what makes for healthy teams, what makes for why some people feel closer to each other than others, what makes for a healthy relationship, what makes for a good marriage. When we look at everything that social scientists are studying when they’re looking at healthy relationships and we break them all down, and there’s three things that have, show up in every single study. And those three things I just called the relationship requirements.
And it’s positivity, so at the bottom of the triangle, it has to feel good. None of us want a relationship that doesn’t feel good. So quick and dirty on that one is just more positive emotion than negative emotion. In fact science says we need to have five positive emotions for every negative emotion. So positive emotions are laughter and humor and acts of service, and touch and eye contact, and inspiration and hope, and pride and celebration, affirmation and gratitude and empathy. Like everything that leaves you feeling good.
And then the two arms up the triangle are consistency and vulnerability. So consistency is consistent, reliable interaction. That’s the way our friendship creates a pattern. That’s what ends up leaving us feeling trusting, and that we can rely on each other. It lets us feel safe. We have a sense of our history gets built. This is how we ended up logging the hours that allow us to get to know each other. So consistency is how we communicate and how we interact.
And then vulnerability is how we feel seen and what stories we tell, and how much we feel known and how much of ourselves we feel accepted and can express in our various relationships. And so at the bottom of the triangle, you have low vulnerability, low consistency, and not a ton of positivity yet. And as you practice those three things, you move up the triangle, up to the top of the triangle where we have our closest of bestest of friends who have the highest vulnerability with us, the highest consistency and the highest express positivity.
And so when we’re looking at remote workplaces, if I were to kind of speak to what I’m seeing happen. I think a lot of our remote workplaces have done a really good job of putting in the consistency. We have found the technology that helps us to interact and be productive and be consistent and get our work done.
But from what I’m hearing, a lot of us are missing the positivity and the vulnerability. We are getting off the end of the day from all these calls and we don’t necessarily feel more positive. We don’t feel more accepted. We don’t feel more cheered for, we don’t feel more celebrated necessarily. And we’re not necessarily all getting off feeling more seen, and feeling like our feelings, our emotions, our stories, our circumstances are being as expressed. And so for any of us, I think the invitation is to look and say, “Of these three things, which one would make the biggest difference in my team right now, or in my relationship?” But those are the three things that all of us have to be paying attention to and assessing in our relationships in order to feel close to each other.
Kara Goldin: I was in this Twitter conversation the other day with somebody that I know, and she was saying that through this shelter in place she’s really reflecting on friendships. And she felt like she had too many friendships, and maybe the wrong friendships, which I thought was like, it’s kind of interesting. And I remember years ago, I sort of had that feeling. Really when I was first starting to work and really looking at my friendships and figuring out. I didn’t actually like phone them and say, you’re off the list.
Shasta Nelson: You didn’t make the cut.
Kara Goldin: Yeah, I didn’t … But I think it’s really figuring out who you are and ultimately what you value. And then, to be honest with you, sometimes like through my journey, I have four kids and they’re older now. I think there were some friendships, especially for friends of mine who didn’t have children, they weren’t going through the same life stages, where now we’re back, right? Where I’m not sort of in kid carpool and talking about those things that were really creating anxiety in my life. Or stuff that I was absorbed in that they weren’t absorbed in. But now it’s sort of more stuff that we can kind of connect on. So I’m super curious, like if you see situations like that, where people feel, I mean, it sounds like it, where you don’t have the trust with these people, but like … Do you feel even during this time where people are able to reflect a little bit more, they’re not just going through emotions. Because they don’t see these people as much, like what sort of, that kind of key thing.
Shasta Nelson: Yeah. It makes me think of two things. It’s, one is that for sure, we, this helps remind us that just having a social busy life isn’t the same as not being lonely. Right? So we could, this is really waking up a lot of us up where we are just like, wow, I don’t have these people that I can just really rely on during this time. I know a whole bunch of people, and I was interacting and I was busy every night of the week. And I was at events and I may have been a part of all these big gatherings and groups and networks and associations. But who am I really able to keep calling and staying in touch with? And so it reminds a lot of us, it’s a great evaluation for stepping back and saying, and when you look at the triangle, you can’t be, none of us have the time and energy and capacity to be that consistent, and that vulnerable with that many people. Right?
And so the vast majority of our relationships are going to be on the bottom third of that triangle, the bottom half that triangle. And your point that Twitter conversations a great illustration of my point earlier that for many of us we’re missing the intimacy, excuse me, at the top of the triangle. And so we might have a whole bunch of relationships on the bottom part of that triangle, and what we’re craving is a couple of those relationships that move all the way to the top and that we prioritize. And that we, they are the people we confide in and share our vulnerability with first. And they are the people that we say yes to, and that we carve out time in our calendar to be consistent with them. And for most of us that is the call, is identify who are the people that you’re willing to keep practicing these three things with over and over and over. Because you can’t do it with everybody. It’s not friend or nothing.
It’s not all, everybody equal. It’s like we have to invest some resources in these three things. And the commonality that you bring up helps those three things. So one of the really fascinating things in the science is that having things in common doesn’t guarantee a bond. So we could match you up with a whole bunch of people that you have, another amazing CEO, another person who has four kids, another person who lives in San Francisco, and it’s not going to produce any more of a bond for you. We often think we need to have certain things in common, and they are actually showing that even having the same world view doesn’t mean that we can’t bond with each other. How those commonalities or life stages do help is if they help us do these three things. And so if we have a carpool with the same kids, or we’re going to the school with the kids, and we’re seeing the same parents over and over, the consistency is there for us.
Or if we feel more insecure about these parenting moments and so we feel safer having these conversations and a part of us, our vulnerability, we get to like be seen as a mom with another mom, then that helps us bond. Or if we end up feeling less judged or more accepted because of something.
So if those commonalities help drive our consistency, our positivity, and our vulnerability to happen, then that’s the magic. But just having things in common, we all know people that we maybe have married into the family, or maybe we work with. We have become close to people who are not like us at all, who are 20 year aged gap. And so we can love and be close to, and feel supported by and be seen by anybody as long as these three things happen. But commonalities can be a driver for those three things, if that makes sense.
So for you it makes sense that at certain life stages, your consistency, your time was going to be more limited and it made more sense that you were going to be drawn more to the people who were in that orbit and that you were seeing more regularly, and who had kids because your kids could get together. And so it helped make those three things happen. Does that resonate?
Kara Goldin: No, no, no, I love it. And I think that’s true. I feel like learning too is such a key thing for me. And I wouldn’t have said this like 20 years ago, but I, and I think this is true in business as well. But I think friendships for me are, I like to be learning. I actually like people. I mean, people are always amazed when they meet my friends, because they’re all like really different. And I have friends that do like different levels of education and different sports. I would say the consistent thread is most of my friends are pretty active. Like they’re, that’s one thing that I think I probably value a lot and I tend to gravitate towards people that are kind of maybe high achievers in different types of things. Whether they were a former athlete and they still go out. But I don’t really care.
I don’t have to hang out with a bunch of like runners. I have a few runners, I have cyclists, I have people all, swimmers. I have people like all over the place. But I feel like even though I don’t necessarily do what they do and I, again, I think this is true in the work environment, that I’m always like telling our managers in the company, like hire people that actually, that you learn from, right? And that are, that obviously you can have a conversation with and they’re enjoyable, but I really believe the same holds true in friendships that you have to get people that are not just like you, but are people that are actually going to teach you something. Not intentionally like teach you something, but are things that you just don’t, you know, that kind of educate you on sort of like worldviews or things like that.
Like, I think a lot of my friends also like to travel as well. We don’t really travel together, but I am like, okay, will you talk to me about going to Egypt? Or you know? And let me like live through your vision. Like, I love that kind of stuff. And so again, I think that there’s like teaching moments along the way where I feel like that’s what our synergies a lot of times is. So it’s super, super interesting.
I feel like the one thing that I’m really, really excited to read in your book is really how this affects the workplace. And I feel like, particularly for millennials, there’s been a whole conversation since many of them have, frankly, graduated from college around community. And I feel like I’m now hearing from so many people in our company that community for them is very difficult when it’s on a screen.
And so a lot of people, even though we’ve been remote for, since basically since March in both our New York and San Francisco office, a lot of our team is actually asking to go back to the office and work. And there’s only a few people we’ve left the offices open to do that. But I hear like Google not going back until next year. And I think it’s really a challenge. I mean, there’s definitely the challenge of people who have multiple roommates and they’re all on Zoom calls and it’s just like too much. Right? But I also think just the idea of being around people in these like little friendships and grabbing a sandwich together and sort of talking is just, that community is really hard. And you can both order lunch and go on Zoom, but I think it’s just, I really think it’s hard.
Shasta Nelson: It is hard. It is hard. I mean, I think, Oh, go ahead, sorry.
Kara Goldin: No, no, no, go ahead. But I’d love to hear about that.
Shasta Nelson: Well I was just going to say, I think that what’s so … Yeah, I love hearing that feedback that you’re getting from your team that makes me so happy. Because to me, the reason I wrote this workplace book, I mean, there were probably multiple things, but the reason I wrote it initially was because the number one of those three requirements, the number one that everybody said was the hardest for them was the consistency. Just when we think about life, when we think about friends we think about personal life. And so when we’re trying to fit friendship into those three hours we have every evening and the weekends, when we feel like we don’t even have enough time with our kids and our spouses, and we need to be running errands and doing chores and getting some things done and watching TV. Like I was just like, everyone felt like, how do I get enough consistency with the same people over and over to actually feel close enough where our vulnerability can go up and be higher?
And it is hard. I could talk you into like one more phone call a month, or a one more weekend trip, and it’s just not going to turn the Titanic around. And so to me, it was like, why don’t we go to where we’re already spending most of our time? The workplace is the equivalent to what school was for us when we were kids. It’s why friendship felt automatic when we were kids, because we had consistent time with the same people over and over and over. And the workplace is the closest thing we have to that as adults. And I say workplace in general, whether we’re remote, working from home, working by ourselves. We are spending the biggest chunk of every day, doing something that matters to us and making a contribution. And of course that’s where we want to be able to have it be seen and be supported by other people.
And so that’s kind of one of the big reasons. And so it’s a little heartbreaking to have, and we do know that the loneliness goes up when people work remote. And it is a little heartbreaking to see so many people making the choice to not come back potentially. It’s a little bit like, I talk about how, I think about how much we’re having this conversation around wanting our kids back in school. And we go, we just can’t have them home, they need socialization, and they need to be around other people. And I’m like, it’s the same for all of us adults too. The studies are so clear. We need six hours of socialization a day as adults. And that number seems so high to most of us, but the studies just continue to show that whether we’re introvert or extrovert, like we need connection, we need people.
And so I think it is a really valid conversation for us to be having of saying, yeah we can do a lot on Zoom, or on whatever video conferencing we’re using. But we’ve lost, like what you were describing, we’ve lost the spontaneity of interaction. We’ve lost proximity. Proximity is a huge driver for relationships. Who we sit next to we’re more likely to bond to than somebody who’s on a different floor in our office. We’ve lost just kind of the opportunity to have five or 10 minute conversations about what we did over the weekend. We’ve lost the opportunity to just have short things with just one person passing in the hall. So even if we have a team meeting now and we all go around the circle and answer the question, that’s a different dynamic than if just two or three of us are having a conversation.
And so, yeah, we’ve lost a lot of opportunities for connecting and being seen that we have not yet been able to replace with technology. And our young generation, our millennials and our generation Z, I applaud them. I think it’s them … When I was doing the research, they’re scoring as one of the low, they’re scoring as the loneliest ages right now. So we used to think of loneliness as an aging problem with our elderly. And the truth is our younger generations are scoring as lonelier than our older generations are right now. And I was just looking in my book here and it says close to 70% of them reported feeling shy and feeling like no one really knows them well. 42% of millennial women were more afraid by double digits compared to other generations of loneliness than a cancer diagnosis.
And loneliness is the number one fear of young people today, ranking ahead of losing a home or a job. And I see that not as, I see that as a benefit, a positive of that generation, quite honestly. I think that all of us, it’s a human need to be connected. And there is nothing wrong with having the need. The healthiest among us will say this is a need I have. Like food, like sleep, like I need to drink. And the healthiest among us will say, I need to get this need met. And so their bodies, all of our bodies, are wired for it. And I love that they’re able to say that they’re connected to it, they know it, we all need it. And I think we should be listening definitely to ourselves and each other on that. It’s really, really important.
Kara Goldin: And so just as a first step, I mean just sort of, just going off of what you were just talking about. I think no matter how old you are, actually telling people that you need human interaction and that you need to maybe go back into an office where there’s some people. You need to get outside and go on a walk, you need to, right?
Shasta Nelson: Yep, yep, yep.
Kara Goldin: Like I think it’s just speak up. But what else would you say are some quick first steps?
Shasta Nelson: Yeah. I mean, I think what you just named is so great because there’s a difference between most of us aren’t getting enough alone time. And most of us aren’t getting enough, really deep, meaningful connection time. We’re getting the stuff in the middle that’s just like a whole bunch of interaction. And so it’s really important that each of us realize that being alone is not the same as being lonely. So we do need to get outside and go for that walk, and we do need the quietness and find those moments. And we do need the meaningful interactions and the meaningful interactions can only happen as we repeat consistency, positivity, and vulnerability over and over with the same few people. And so it’s really important for all of us to realize. And that’s kind of why so much of my work has been around trying to remove the stigma of loneliness, because our bodies are wired for it.
I mean, we know that the same way you feel hungry when you need food, you feel lonely when you need connection and there’s no shame in that. You’re not like, oh my goodness, what’s wrong with my body? I can’t believe it feels hungry, I already fed it three weeks ago. You know? I mean, you need it on a regular basis and the same thing as with connection. And so, yeah, we really want to get better at saying, I mean, if I were to give quick tips it would be, name two or three people that you want to be closer to, that you enjoy, that you’re kind of gravitating to. And like, what does that look like to put some consistency on? And the one idea that we could do with anybody like the workplace, what makes the consistency easy is we don’t have to invite over and over and over, we just are seeing each other.
And so if you can replicate that in these remote times and just say, what if I end every week talking for 15 minutes with so, and so. We toast the end of our workweek. And so let’s just put that in the calendar to end 15 minutes on Fridays together so that you don’t have to keep inviting, like anything you can lock down that becomes a consistent pattern. Let’s do a Zoom lunch every Wednesday, let’s do this every … So like anything you can lock in is going to be, help you get that consistency without having all the effort of the scheduling. So that’s a really big one, is to just try to lock a few of those things. And the other thing I would say is we’d be practicing really increasing our positivity right now. We are not going to want to be consistent if we interact and it doesn’t leave us feeling good.
And so let’s make sure we’re expressing more than normal, our appreciation of each other. And so don’t end the phone call without saying, thank you so much for taking this time. Like, I really enjoy connecting with you, it was fabulous, thank you. And I look forward to next week. Like do everything you can to express that because most of us are living with a lot more fear and a lot more stress, and we need to hear that and be like, okay, good.
And then we want to show up then we’re not [inaudible 00:30:44], I hope that I’m not just intruding on their calendar. I hope they’re not doing this just to be nice. You know? I mean, those are all of our insecurities. The more we can show up and say thank you, and to say, Oh, when you said this to me, it just left me feeling so much more hopeful about this. And that gave me a great idea. And so expressing our appreciation is going to be, it’s glue for bonding and nobody’s having too much of it these days. So you got to be kind.
Kara Goldin: Yeah, never know. I think that’s super key. Another statistic that I read from some of the pieces that I got from your PR firm were senior leaders we’re lonelier. And I think part of the challenges is, I mean, I think to some extent it’s probably how kids view parents. Like they look at senior leaders as they have to have it all together, right? Like it’s all about me. Like I’m working for this company and I think the old saying, it’s lonely at the top. And again, I think it’s not just in your personal life, but also in your work life for so many people. And it’s nearly 56% of leaders feel like there’s no one that they could talk to and not having those groups.
I remember I learned from a group that I’m a part of, been a part of since 2012, that’s EY’s Winning Women. And I remember one day hearing from some people in this group that the most important thing is to actually get out of the office and actually figure out, you mentioned, you know, finding three people that you want to talk to this week. I mean, I’m always picking out people and saying, “Hey, I really appreciate things that you say.” I mean, I did that to you, right? Like where we connected based on stuff that you were saying. And I mean, frankly, that’s why I love social media. I’ve met people on all social media platforms, as well as just being connected from conferences, or through friends from events that I go to. But I think that that’s also really, really important, is to feel like, you know, how do you get to connected?
And especially when you’re going through a time where you, like it doesn’t stop when things have to be virtual too. I’ve had calls with some of these people. I’m also involved in another group YPO where I find like some of those things, you know, just get on a call with somebody and talk to them about, Hey, what’s going on? Like, what’s, you know, how’s your world going? What’s challenging for you right now?
And it’s amazing how oftentimes you leave those meetings as just feeling better, right? And feeling more connected. And you know, it may not happen for another year, but you feel like, Oh, that person really made me think. At least that’s how I’ve felt. But I think that that’s just such another point.
I’m so excited to read this book and I think it’s got so much value truly for so many. So I’m very, very excited about it. So out August 18, that’s right?
Shasta Nelson: Yep. Yeah, August 18.
Kara Goldin: Awesome, very, very exciting. So author, so Shasta Nelson, The Business of Friendship. I asked two last questions. What’s your favorite Hint flavor?
Shasta Nelson: Well, now ever since you held up your bottle of Clementine, that’s all I can think about. That looked amazing.
Kara Goldin: Yeah, it is. It’s super yummy. And that great picture that you have in the background it’s about the same color. I’m looking at the Clementine orange in the background which is great.
Shasta Nelson: That’s the cover, that’s the color of my book.
Kara Goldin: I know.
Shasta Nelson: It’s gorgeous.
Kara Goldin: I know. That’s what I wanted you to hold up. That’s terrific.
Shasta Nelson: I guess that’s where I made that connection subconsciously.
Kara Goldin: Yeah, that’s awesome.
And then, what makes you unstoppable?
Shasta Nelson: That’s a great question. Being emotionally connected to something. Like the people or the projects, or the issues. Like if I’m emotionally connected to it, like this friendship thing, or like when you just brought up leadership, like just feeling so … I get just emotionally passionate about leaders feeling connected and leading from a place where they feel seen and supported, and safe and yeah. Anytime I’m emotionally connected and invested, like you won’t stop me.
Kara Goldin: I love it. I love it, love it. So if people want to connect with you online, where’s the best place?
Shasta Nelson: Well, shastanelson.com for if like for all the professional stuff, the speaking and everything. But I’m all over on the social media too. I love YouTube. I do tons of videos. I love Facebook and Instagram and LinkedIn. And then for anybody, we’re doing a bundles for anybody who orders the book, you can go to the businessoffriendship.com and we have like team resources there. We have 35 different sharing questions that team leaders can use with teams. And we have a bonus chapter there on how to maintain friendships after you leave a job. If anybody been fired recently or laid off, that’s a good one. We’ve got book discussion guides on there. So all kinds of resources I’ve got bundled up and that’s at the businessoffriendship.com.
Kara Goldin: I love it. I love it. Well, thank you so much, everybody go out and get this book for sure. And also check out the very, very inspiring Shasta Nelson. So thank you again.
Shasta Nelson: Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Kara Goldin: You were super fun. Yeah, totally.
Thanks everybody. And go ahead and go to Unstoppable if you haven’t subscribed. Go to Unstoppable as well and get the subscription. Were doing now twice a week, Mondays and Wednesdays, with all kinds of really, really amazing guests. So super, super exciting. So thanks everybody.
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