Rochelle Humes: Learning To Be At Peace With Uncertainty | E118 | Transcription
Transcription for the video titled "Rochelle Humes: Learning To Be At Peace With Uncertainty | E118".
Note: This transcription is split and grouped by topics and subtopics. You can navigate through the Table of Contents on the left. It's interactive. All paragraphs are timed to the original video. Click on the time (e.g., 01:53) to jump to the specific portion of the video.
I just got to a point where I thought it's time to empower myself. And do you know what? Some of this is your fault. Because you said something, you'd met someone, you spoke to, I can't remember. 51%. That it's been my life. I accept it. Like you say, acceptance actually can be a beautiful thing and it can be a liberating thing to think, I'm not holding on to something that I can't change. So first of all, the conversation was well done, I didn't know about this. And then overnight the dial turned. That definitely was like, do you know what? Actually, I was scared taking my kid to nurse for that day because I got death threat. Quick one. Can you do me a favor if you're listening to this and hit the subscribe button, the follow button, wherever you're listening to this podcast? Thank you so much. Michelle Hughes, once upon a time, she was a member of the Saturdays, one of the most famous UK girl bands that has ever risen from this country. But since then, she's become so much more. She is a mother. She is an fearless entrepreneur. And honestly, she is one of the most pleasant, wonderful authentic guests I've ever had on this podcast. And I can see why, after having this conversation with her, she's built this huge, engaged community behind her online. And I think you're going to see that too. She's inspiring. She is wise. She is resilient. But she's also just unbelievably real. And today, we talk about something she's never addressed before, the moment where she was nearly canceled, unanswered questions from her childhood. And also the all-consuming side of starting and running a business that people just never talk about, the difficult times, the rejection, the struggle with work, life balance. And in her words, how she's just winging it anyway. And I kind of think we are all just winging it. So without further ado, I'm Stephen Bartlett. And this is the Diaries CEO. I hope nobody's listening. But if you are, then please keep this yourself.
Personal Growth And The Impact Of Celebrities
Growing up without a father (02:11)
Just me and Mum, I was reading about the start of your life and going through multiple interviews, and I'm afraid it kept coming up. Just me and Mum. Why was it just you and Mum? It was just me and Mum, because that's sort of how my childhood looked. My mum and my dad split officially when I was a tiny, probably my son's age, probably maybe one, just short of one. And then that was sort of it really. So that sort of, I had contact with my dad for a little burst of time, but it was never anything solid. And then the contact stopped altogether. So yeah, that, I suppose, I actually, it's funny that you point in the app because I didn't realise how much I say that. But it, just me and Mum, is probably something that I have said a lot. You're right. I had a relative show up one day when I was maybe 12. And they claimed to be my uncle. They just walked into the shop and they claimed to be my uncle. And they presented evidence, which is really compelling. They were my uncle. They strolled in and they spoke to my dad and they said, "I'm your brother." And they looked at me and said, "I'm your uncle." And it was a really bizarre point in my life because although we believed them and they had evidence to prove that they were, there was no relationship there. And I read that you went in search of your dad to just find out who he was and what was going on at some point in your life. Can you tell me how that interaction was and what you, what you felt? Yeah, I think my mum did very well at not sort of discrediting my dad over the years. So she would kind of make a lot of excuse. Well, now I'm an adult and I'm a parent, right? I know that she was obviously covering his ass constantly and making a lot of excuses and dressing it up in a way that I suppose that at the time I could handle as a kid. But you're always going to have that level of curiosity in life. When I had my own children, I weirdly became less curious, which is weird, right? Because I had my own kids and I suppose, I've always thought, "Oh, yeah, he's my dad." And, "Oh, he's not been around. I don't really know him." But he's my dad. And I sort of held hope. But then I had my own children and I saw what being a dad was from my husband. And I knew what being, even not being a dad was being a parent was because I was then a parent and a sonted and in love and lived my life for my kids. So I think the respect was here, but it was in the basement when I had my own, because my outlook was then like, "Okay, now I really don't understand the way that you don't want to be a part of your child's life." You know? For some people, that changes, they have their own kids and then they like them to know they're grandparents or I'd like them. And I thought, "My biggest thing in life is to protect these little ones. I know how flaky you were for me. There's no way that I'd have them sat by the window saying, "Is Granddad coming to get me? Because I can protect, I've got control over that. I'm not against it. I'd be open, but it's not something that I would seek now." And there was that day that you got a chance to meet him. And what did you find out that day about him or why he wasn't present or? Well, I didn't. Really? I didn't find out anything. My mum would always help with this story that sort of went like, "Bless her and this is what now I'm a parent." I'm like, she was so thinking on the spot, but it's something that stuck with me. She said, "Some daddies aren't very good at looking after little girls because they would look after little boys." It's easier for them to look after little boys. And she must have literally been doing the washing. And I've said, "Why doesn't you know?" And I, because at that time, I knew that he had a son fast forward to have many years later. I realised that he also had two daughters. So that sort of mum was like, "Ooh, ooh." But at that point, I was old enough to realise that he had a new setup and I just didn't slot into that. I'm super naive to the situation because I don't know what it's like. It's important to say that. So everything I talk about or assume of the situation comes from a place of total naivety. If I met my dad and he wasn't around, I would assume I would just ask him the fucking question, "Where the fuck have you been?" I know. And can I just tell you with everything else in my life? I am. I mean, ask anybody that knows me the most direct person. But there's just this, like, I can't even articulate it enough. Like, there's this weird, it's been my life, right? And I've got to this point and I still don't know the answer, but I know the person that I want the answers from isn't the person that's going to give me the honest answer. So I just don't waste my own time because time is something that we don't have enough of. So I met that place. So it's not that I'm like, I'm not scared to know the truth. I'm just not in desperate need for it because I know that it's not going to be a real picture of what happened. And I'm too old and I'm too wise to believe bullshit. So I think that's where I am with it.
How Melissa forgave her father and accepted his behaviour. (07:42)
There's something really powerful and beautiful about acceptance in situations like that. It seems that most of our unhappiness or frustration comes from the lack of acceptance, not going to the point where we need the answer and we need someone to blame. Or you need to be able to change it. Like, I'm not going to be me having a conversation with my father now at 32 years of age with three kids of my own, with a husband, with my own career, my own life, me having a conversation and him saying to me, oh, it didn't work out of your mum and I, I don't know what he would say. This is me thinking of an answer. Me having that conversation, I'm actually not going to get anything out of it. That's genuinely how I feel. There's not anything he would be able to say to me that could change the fact that he didn't come to watch my nativity play or he didn't do putting that ground. So really, I don't need a dad at my age now because I have my own family set up and I'm secure. So I'm not seeking that because it's something I've never had. Do you forgive him for his absence? Would you? Yeah, I think I do. I'm like that as a person. I don't hold on. And I think if there was something in life that I would hold on to it, it'd be something like this, right? Because I would have the right to. But I don't. And I think, had you have asked me at 18, I would have been like, I will never forget that man for not being around for me. But I just know what it is. I know what I'm going to get if I had contact with him. I accept it. Like you say, acceptance actually can be a beautiful thing. And it can be a liberating thing to think. Oh, amen. I'm not holding on to something that I can't change. It's done. It's in the past. It is what it is. There's a quote that I read one day on. And it really stuck with me. And it kind of speaks to what you're saying there, which is like it's forgiveness. But I guess acceptance as well is letting a prisoner go and realizing that you were the prisoner the whole time. So you were holding on to a way which wasn't going to ever serve you. But you thought it was in service of revenge or victory. I'll win if I hold on to this grudge or this bitterness. But in fact, it's like poison in your own chalice.
Holding on to resentment and acceptance. (09:54)
Honestly, I couldn't like I have friends that they are back to a tea. And I think you have literally, you are stopping your future and the rest of your life because you're holding on to something that first of all, no one even knows what it is when it's been that long. Like, like what is this all about? And you're the person that remains unhappy because you're you're going through life with the side of your brain that's focused on the fact that we'll know because they don't be wrong. Yeah, they did. But you're doing yourself wrong. Yeah, it's exhausting. And that's just not me as a person like onto the next. And that's just me. That's always been my mentality. So you on that day when you you discovered his his other life, his life as it is, you also discovered to is it half sisters? Is that what it's called? I have no idea. I don't even know what an uncle is these days. But yeah, yeah. So yeah, I suppose technically they're halfs. Yeah, we share the same father, but not the same mother. Yeah. Two sisters and a brother. Okay. Yeah. So you're right. I knew I had the brother. I didn't know that he had daughters. But obviously they were young. So they came with him. And we just weren't going to see eye to eye. He just wasn't consistent. And that was just the, you know, a continuous pattern. So then it sort of the contact dwindled again to near on nothing, well, nothing. And then fast forward to about 11, 12 years later, I was at a Christmas do at my then agents. And they had just taken on one of the guys from Love Island, Kent, who is a lovely, lovely guy. And I obviously, you know, Praseco's hit, Mum's got an eye off, having a lovely evening. He randomly come up to you. I've never met him before prior to this. Never met him. I was like, I'm nice to meet you. And he was asking me about the management and was like, June, do you want? And I'm like, yeah, they're going to be great for you. Good luck with everything. And then I could feel that he wanted to approach me and say something. And the night's gone on. And, you know, maybe a couple of cocktails later, he comes up to me and he's like, look, okay, so this is really weird. But I went to school with your sister. I was like, right, okay, really? She never said, thinking the sister that I grew up with. And he's like, no. So on your dad's side. And he said, I always said to her because she was a really good friend, if ever I bump into your sister, I'm going to give her your number. And I lip, can I just tell you? I was twisted. I sobered up within a second. I was like, sorry, what? And he said, look, can I just message her now? And it all just happened so quickly. He WhatsApp term was like, and with your sister, a Christmas party, can I give her your number? She was like, please, the next thing I had, her number saved in my phone. The next day, I sent her a message. We had arranged to meet later on that week with all of them. So the two sisters, the brother. So I was like, okay, this is great. I can I told my mom and then it got to Thursday night. And I promised you I'd the worst time. I was so nervous. It's like, well, if I don't know if I can do this, if I can go, like this is. So I made him come with me. So he came because I was like, the three of them are together. They've grown up with each other. They know each other. Like, I feel really run. I don't know why. I just felt really vulnerable about the whole thing. So yeah, we went for dinner. We it was like, Marv said it was really weird for him to witness because he was like, I just felt like it was the norm. And it was weird. Like, I was like, my brother going, you look like my eldest daughter, like, you know, just jeans are really mad. Like she's super tall. So I'm like, she must get her height from you. It was just a really weird thing. And Marvin was just like in the car and I was like, I was just staring at them all because you are all so similar. And it's that weird, like nature and nurture thing, isn't it? Like, we are just so similar mannerisms, everything. And then from that day, we like took every single day. I can't remember a time where they wasn't in my life. Isn't that a gift? It really is. And that's what I mean when I speak of not holding on to resentment, not not holding on to it. Because like, you know, me thinking, oh, well, that's lovely for them. They live the life with my with my dad. And they seem to get the attention and not holding on to things that you actually don't know too much about, like, not holding on to those feelings of anger towards the fact that he wasn't around for me. Because if I'd have held on to that, I wouldn't have gone and met them for dinner and struck up that relationship. And I wouldn't have real key players that are in my corner now in my life and people that I adore. But that comes of age. As I said, the younger me, I read something the other day on Instagram and said, I'm so proud of how the old me and situations that the younger me just wouldn't have entertained. And that is the key of just not holding on to stuff that you think you have to. Because actually, there is always a light at the end of that tunnel. And my light is them. And the siblings that I didn't have around me that are now everything to me. I've always contended with that with, especially growing up with this idea that I I assumed my family should be and look perfect. Yeah. And we go through so much, like self harm, trying to make our family as we see it in like the movies, like home, like I just need them to be like this and act like this. And so much despair and misery when they fail to meet that expectation.
Your family doesn't get a free pass into your life (16:06)
And I think there's not enough people talking about the fact that like, by the way, your family don't get like a free pass into your life. You don't have to fight forever to make the setup perfect. In fact, you end up harming yourself more than you gain from trying to achieve that. And I definitely noticed that in my life. So with me at some point, when I got a little bit older, maybe a bit more secure, I realized that like, just like everything else in my life, that too has to serve me. You don't get a free pass. Like, if you're going to be toxic and you're going to be an asshole to me, goodbye motherfucker. Like, I don't care if we have the same, you know, I mean, and that's not a narrative people talk about enough. So I was really, yeah. And I think, and I think for me, I definitely grew up, I grew up with the sort of, it's something to say embarrassment, because I'm not sure if that is the right word. I suppose as a kid, maybe it was, but my family didn't look like everybody else's. So I knew I was very aware, like, I knew my grandparents, God rest their souls from my dad's side. But I grew up in a white family. In fact, I'd come to have to explain that my sister didn't look like my sister, but we were sisters. And, you know, she'd be the last person in the room that you'd say that was my sister, because we don't look anything alike. And, you know, I was aware that I then had a side of my family, my black side that I wasn't around. But that was still a big part of my life. And I was very aware of how that looked. And I knew that I had siblings that looked like me, but my family was just a big, big, messy picture. But like, with so much love, like, I had the best upbringing my mom did everything by me to raise me in the right way. And she did a phenomenal job. But I was really embarrassed of how that looked. Like, I didn't see a Christmas commercial that had like my family on the ad. But really, as I'm older now, and as I said, it does come with age, I'm like, it's amazing. Like, I've so many different elements of my life. But yeah, I always want to speak about it and be open because your family doesn't have to look like I met Marvin and his mom and dad have been married like 40 odd years. And, you know, they share the same DNA. And it's all, you know, it's all very, in my mind, how I would have wanted my family to look. But everybody's family comes with their different problems. Their road hasn't been plain sailing. And I just think something that I've always spoken about because it is what you make it at the end of the day. And I think, like you said, if it serves you in the right way, then brilliant. But also if your family is perfect on the outside and it's not serving you, then you don't have to hold on to things that you think you have to because you've got that ideal picture in your mind. And even a dysfunctional family can teach you a lot of important lessons about life.
The downside of a turbulent childhood (19:03)
And so I'm really interested in course, it tends to be the case with my guests that come here. It's in fact, often the thing that made them different, the thing that made their family slightly dysfunctional, which leads to them having wild success, obviously, sometimes, or becoming an anomaly later in life. Yeah. It seems to tends to be the case that a little bit of a different start to life causes a little bit of a different end to life. Yeah. You know what I mean? So, and that's again, needs to be said, there's always a downside as well to that. So we have people here that are incredibly relentless in their career because of some insecurity from their childhood. So just understanding that and being self-aware about that is important. Speaking of tremendous successes, the Saturdays, when you look back on that phase of your life, how would you describe it now in hindsight?
The Saturdays: The Perfect Time in My Life (19:45)
And now you're 32. Oh my gosh. You may look 22. I look back now and I think the Saturdays existed at the perfect time in my life. Like, I was a young girl in, well, I think when I joined the group, I was like, obviously, it took a while for us to launch. So I think I was 18 when we formed and what young girl doesn't want to be in a girl band? Well, I mean, I'm sure there are girls that don't. But for me, it was the most incredible experience. When I look back now, I think we were actually really fortunate when I see other girl bands and their fall outs and the way that looked, I think, goodness me, yes, we bickered, but we bickered like sisters. We never had a row that was like, we just never had it. We didn't. We kind of was all there for the same reason. We loved what we did and we had a respect for that. So I feel blessed because when I look at the history of girl bands, it doesn't always play out that way. So we had the best time if there was something up, we'd sort it out and that was it done. And it was only really ever a work thing. So it'd be like, I don't like that. I don't think that's the right vibe for the video. Or I don't think and that's the sort of disagreement, that's sort of where it stopped. And then we always had this, there was five of us. So we had the majority rules. And it was on the time where you were in the tour, not the three. It was so annoying. So you'd be like, and it was one of those things because you know you couldn't do anything about it because we lived our life by that. So it is what it is. And even if you think your point is so valid, you're in the two. So you're back. But yeah, so I had a ball. I was young for a proportion of it. I was single. You know, I didn't have chill. I just we traveled the world. We performed. We had a bloody good time doing it. So when I look back, I only actually look back fondly. So interesting because Liam Payne's that here from One Direction. Before he arrived, I would have said the same. What young guy wouldn't have wanted to be in One Direction. But then when he described how turbulent that experience was and being a young dude that comes out on stage, there's 150,000 people screaming at him, he then has to go back to his hotel room straight after the gig. And he's basically locked in the hotel room because there's tens of thousands of fans screaming downstairs and doing that over and over again for years and years and years, really took a toll on him. Obviously, like also not being able to walk down the street without people coming up to him. And then the band ending and there's almost that sense of like, well, what the hell do I do now? Was there not? It almost made me think that there's a bit of a curse of being in the public eye, especially in that context of a band. And then what happens after and do they experience?
What Liam Payne Can Teach Us about Pop Celebrity (22:46)
I don't know. I just after the conversation with Liam, I thought, fuck, I'm so glad I wasn't in One Direction. I think look, I think One Direction's level, and it was a global phenomenon, right? And I've noticed, being married to Marv, there's a very different level of hysteria when you're in a boy band to a girl band. It's just different. It comes with the nature of this job. The hysteria is wild for boys, which I do think would come with a different level of pressure. I mean, there's pros and cons to both. When you're in a girl band, it's very visual and people are obsessed with how you look. And if you're the one that may have enjoyed your Christmas too much and put on a bit of weight, oh, people are going to tell you, or if you're the one that kind of, we've girls, it's all very visual. And I think that's what I think we can all say that we would have found the toughest at one point. For us, we didn't burst onto the scene, right? So we weren't like JLS or One Direction, who went on X Factor in its prime and gained this overnight momentum and girls overnight want to wait outside their house because there's one minute you're a guy that's just turned up for an audition and the next minute you've got this pressure that you don't know how to handle because no one's taught you that. So for us, we did the university gigs, we didn't have that burst, we really did, it was a real sort of grind to get our single played on radio. So for us, it was kind of every little bit of success meant so much because we would all at the time, we'd be like, oh, we should just kind of expect, and we'd say things like that because we'd think it was so hard for us and we'd see these groups that appeared overnight and we'd be like, oh my goodness, we've been here for years trying. Our dressing rooms would be toilets because that's the level it was. It wasn't all glitz and glamour, but it worked that way in the end and we were all on that same page and it was kind of like you're only as strong as your weakest member, right? So we were all there, we were all present, we were all always on time and we really wanted it. We enjoyed it because as these things happened or we got booked for an amazing performance, which was really hard to get or we, you know, an appearance or a Jonathan Ross chat show, we were like bloody got Jonathan Ross because we couldn't get on there the single before because nobody was interested.
The Best Show on Tv That Nobody Watched (25:09)
However, yes, there were massive downsides. It's like a whole merry-go-round and like you're on a hamster wheel. I think the downsides is not having control over your own life and I'm a control freak. I don't know if you've got to that already. I like to know what I'm doing. I'm like, that's me as a person. So there's, you know, there would be times when you'd feel responsible and because that was always our sort of mantra, like we're in this together, like one of us drops off, we let the other one down. If you weren't up to it, the pressure that you'd put on yourself to be up to it for everybody else, like I had a layer and I came back to work three and a half weeks later and performed on national television, like with Spanx up to my neck to try and hold in the belly and like, this is gross for you, but boobs leaking because I'm like trying to navigate and my breastfeeding and my not all because I didn't want to let the girls down and the fact that the label were like you've got another single to release and I think it just got to a point where we became a bit more adult and we all just were like, this has been quite a lot, you know, and we're ready to sort of wind down. We never actually officially broke up. There's probably someone in the record label somewhere that probably was still saying that we owe them a single. We didn't officially break up because there wasn't a need to because we love each other and it's, look, we don't talk every day because we spent so long of our life together, but I see one of them tomorrow and it's like, we haven't not seen each other. I think we just got to a point where we were like, we've, you know, we've grafted, we've done this, now we're ready to sort of dislike. There's things that when you're in a group that you don't even think about, right, because you're in control of yourself in the same way I am now, but thinking about things like we would all have to agree on the same day off. Well, that's near unimpossible because you want to go to see your friend in, I don't know, whatever he's doing that day and you and I want to do this and I've actually got this.
The Expectations of a Reunion (27:11)
So it was those little things that became hard for me like, I want to be off because my half's got a doubt for work. So can we have Friday? Well, now actually, because I want and it naturally, it's going to just become a little bit like, okay, let's pause on this for now and we can all go in our own lanes. And that's sort of how it ended and how it still is. As there's priorities shift, I guess, and you start to, you know, and I had a baby. Yeah, exactly. I'm like, you know, and that's, that became everything. And owner, or owner already had a little one too before I had a layer, but it just, yeah, there's a switch isn't there and you start to go, okay, we've done this now first. So when's the reunion? Right, sometime. You know what? I just can't imagine doing it. I'll be totally honest with you and I'm always honest. I just can't, and I've been there to see Marvin and side of stage doing the whole group UI thing, but I thought I just, just feels like a lovely chap. So that ended for me. And it was so lovely and I will always speak of it fondly, but it just feels like a period in my life that's done. When you think about doing it, when you think about getting that email and they say, we're going to do a tour reunion, what are the emotions that come to that? As in the sense, yeah, it just would feel like, I just, I've got three kids. And there's so many things that I turned down because it wouldn't work for my life. And that falls into that category. Like, my life's changed. I have a business. There's no way I could be on tour. Imagine the girls in the office would be like, oh, she's at the O2 tonight. Like, we've got stuff to do. You know, I think it's just, it just wouldn't, well, I don't think I'd remember the dance routines, the thought of doing it. It's all of the, like the actual, I love it. And I feel like a bit of a cool mum that I had that time, but it's not me now. It's just not. And I think it's okay. Do your kids realise that you were in a really well-known girl band? A liar, dad, but she doesn't care. It's really sad. Like, I was, I was showing her these videos. She cares to watch the videos. And that's quite nice. But I was telling her, I was like, you know, because she loves Little Mix. Oh my God, she is like the biggest Little Mix fan. She should tell her they copied me. I was like, literally, I was saying to her because when the Little Mix girls were on X Factor, we were on tour and they come to one of our two rehearsals and like, asked for our advice. So I was, I was saying this to a layer and I was like, well, do you know, actually? When? And I was telling this whole story, they, they come to, and I tried to find it. And there was a clip on YouTube of them coming to meet us and watching our rehearsal was like, it's ancient, this clip. She was like, but why would they ask you for advice? Go to your room. I actually know dessert tonight. So in her mind, because she, she understands I did it, but she, I don't think she realizes, but it's funny because because she loves Little Mix, I'm like, God, she would probably love it if I did that again. You know, like, she would probably love that. But yeah, I'm just not there in my life anymore. And that isn't, there's no, that's not bad mind, as me and my friends would say, it's just not, not for me now. I've had so many people tag me on Instagram, even on Telegram and in my Twitter DMs, in a picture of them starting their fuel journey.
AD - Sponsored by Huel (30:56)
And it's one of the most amazing things in my life that I get to do a podcast, which of course needs money to fuel. And I have a sponsor like you, who I genuinely believe is going to help every single person who starts their fuel journey change their life. Because this podcast, the central intention of this podcast is to help people live better lives. And we get to sit here and I get to promote to you, a product which has not only helped me change my life, but is going to help millions of people and is helping millions of people live a nutritionally complete life. It's so, it's such an incredible product. And for me, the reason why it's incredible is because it gives me my protein, it gives me my vitamins, minerals, it's plant based, it's low in sugar, gluten free. It does all of that in a small drink that tastes good. There are other products, there's foods, there's the hot and savory collection, many other things. But for me, this ready to drink is the absolute saviour of my diet throughout the week where I'm moving at such pace. Look, I don't want to labor the point, but if you haven't tried, you'll give it a try. And if you do, tag me, Instagram, wherever you try it, give me a tag. Anyway, back to the podcast.
The start of my business (32:02)
You talked about starting a business, then you've got a business, you run down my little cocoa. Tell me about that. Why did you want to start that business? And obviously, being a mother of three wonderful children, starting a business, especially starting a business at the start of the pandemic is a phenomenal timing to take on tremendous responsibility. Yeah. So obviously, I'd started the business before. It didn't launch until a few weeks before the pandemic hit. About the world's re-emotion, right? We couldn't stop then. So I was pregnant with a liar and going through that real phase of thinking, I'm an Earth mum, and being really precious about what I use. They are the most precious thing ever in your life. And I was really fussy about what I used. And I would shop really premium. So I'd be going into Liberty Beauty Hall and finding out, and I'd be really into it. There wasn't anything that existed on the high street that I felt happy with. A lot of them have outrageous chemicals in and things that you are like, "Oh, that's quite harsh for baby skin." So for me, it was bridging that gap of products that you could use for the whole family that were gentle, that had everything that I wanted as my values. And so the journey began. And I didn't want this to be a flashing the pan thing. I didn't want this to be "baby" by Rochelle Hughes. This wasn't about me, right? This was about me building a brand from the ground up, rolling with the punches, which we certainly have done. And yeah, bigger picture. Almost creating a space. I knew what I wanted to do, but almost creating a space for myself that I'm always going to be needed, right? Because it's mine. And no one can make the decisions that I can make because this is my baby. So why was that important? Well, I suppose there's a little bit of the nature in what I do that yes, I host television, but any day someone more relevant or more current could come along because that's the way the time is there could be somebody new that now fills the gap that I had created or left open. So I think for me, it's always being that one step ahead. Being in control. Being in control. You get in this thing. Yes, Marvin told me. It hasn't been easy though. Goodness me. I knew exactly what I wanted. So we started off with a range of seven products that we develop, which takes a long time. And please believe it's like, particularly when its children involved. So the testing for any product, the process is quite stringent and it's a full-on thing, but add newborn into it. We're dealing with a whole new level of testing, which rightly so. So it took a while. It took three years for before the pandemic hit and it was in store. It was three years' work prior to that. And I'm never happy with something on the first round. It's notorious. It's not happened yet. It won't happen. There'll always be something that I want to change. So that obviously took quite a long time. And then it was me, I suppose, deciding from a sensible business perspective, if I want to take the risk and go on my own e-commerce festival, or do I want to partner with a retailer? Most people eventually want to partner with a retailer, right? It's getting in there and it's, you know, and that's where I was lucky. You know, the business has been me and it's been my graft aside from Rochelle Humes. But that's where I do feel lucky that I could use my profile to have a meeting with certain retailers and be in that room and, you know, use that to my advantage, which I did do. However, it can go against me too. So it's not always, yeah, okay, you've got that because you have had the profile that has helped with that. It's actually can can go against you because, you know, what do you know? You're a celebrity coming into this world and what is this going to be another celebrity range? People say that to you or was that kind of implied? Yeah, I mean, they said it without saying it as bluntly as I did. Yeah, it was, it was, yeah, definitely implied. So then so I was going for a whole thing and there was, I've had this moment where one of my products was a, well, it is a car custard and that was key to the range. Like, that's happening. And there were quite a few retailers that didn't feel the need. They liked the range. I think they liked the range and they liked the association with me and what that might bring to their store. But the values and everything else that comes with the brand that I've created, they wasn't so interested in. So the fact that I'm trying to make it diverse, the fact that, you know, that I want people to walk on their high street and be able to get a hair product for Afro hair, that that's a must. The fact that, you know, the level of moisturizing is different when you're of a black background, you know, and that, that appreciating those things. And I think, I mean, what's really interesting is I think if I'd have pitched this idea now, post BLM movement, I think they would have bit my hand off, which is wild, right? But when I did pitch it, it was like, no, there's not really, I don't think there's a need. And I'm like, there's no need for a product for people with curly Afro hair. Sorry. So I, there was a bit of a struggle. And then I had this meeting with boots. I actually felt like I was on Dragon's Den. Really? Yeah, I felt like I was on the telly. I actually was, I was really nervous. I felt like I was really just pitching something that I knew that was great. And I believed him, but it was really, I suppose when it's your passion, it feels you with that level of nerves that are different, right? Instantly, it was boots. They got it. They were like, okay, love it. We want to take it all. And we love the curl custard. And I was like, okay, these are my people. And it's, I mean, it's ironic. It's just, I'm so pleased that I went with my gut and I was persistent with that because I felt like it was going to go somewhere. So I needed to stand firm on that. What else is surprised you about running your own business that you, if someone had told you before you started, you might not bothered?
What surprises you about running a business? (38:53)
Oh my gosh. It's all consuming. And I think if you're going to start a business, you have to know that don't think you're going to turn your phone off at five because that's not a thing. It's not a thing. And if you turn your phone off at five, don't expect a successful business. Like don't expect to make money for the first period of time. Expect to, if you break even, that's good. And you have to be all in. You can't, like I speak to like some of my sister's friends and they want to, oh, we want to start a business. We just do this. But you know, do you, do you actually? And I think it's, it's, and that's not being patronised in. That's like, you're not going to make an Instagram page for it. It's going to be success overnight. And you're going to post a few pre pictures. It takes everything. And I think once you're happy with that, then I think you'll be okay. Once you know that. It's really interesting because people don't talk about that enough. There's definitely a culture of be your own boss, start a business as if it will be, you know, the minute you make that decision, it's a decision of like freedom and your life is just totally yours and in control. But it tends to be the case in my experience anyway, that starting a business becomes almost the antithesis, the opposite of control. Yeah. You are controlled by your emails and your WhatsApp and crisis and employees. And I think it's important. Part of the reason I started this podcast was to try and shed a light on that side of things that Instagram won't like tell you about. And I think that's, because that's the, that is the culture that we live in now, that that you literally can launch a page and you can look to me overnight. It doesn't mean that it's going to work. And I think yeah, I think I just am always real with that sort of stuff because you have to work hard like you, people underestimate graft. And I think particularly that's something that's really important to me for my children. Like, are they going to have the same level of hustle that I have and that same work ethic? And I still don't know the answer to that to be honest with you. Do I do that through schooling? Do I really make a fuss about their tests? But I also want to let them know at the same time, I didn't leave school with X, Y and Z. I did it myself. So I think that's a, that it's something that I just look, show up, be present, be committed, work your ass off at the thing that you know that it is that you're good at. And I think I'm not into like, I'm not going to be that mum that lets my kid go unexpected. She can't sing and be capping in the wings. I adore my children. And I will love them no matter what. And I would like to hear them sing. But I'm going to be real. And I think that's what we need more of. And I think that's what, because I'm everyone's hype girl to the end, I will hype you. Now I've met you and I like you. I will hype you so hard. But I will always be real with you. And I think that is what it doesn't have to come you know, from a place of judgment or a place of disrespect. It's like, look, maybe go away and think about that a bit more and go and I think that's what I want my kids to have from me. They will have love and abundance. But if you're not good at a certain thing, I'm not going to go do it and lead them into a run blind. I'm going to say, look, this is what you're amazing at. We look at this. And I think we can love our kids and support them without. You know, because I think that's doing them wrong.
Self Acceptance And Navigating Parenthood
Don't focus on what you're bad at (42:40)
I think we can be real at the same time. A lot of our guests in fact have sat here in the last couple of weeks and said the same thing about the importance of actually don't focus on the shit you're really bad at. If you want to go far in life, don't try and turn your D in physics to a C in physics. Just focus on Jimmy Carter, just focus on the A like double down on the competency. And it's that it's taking that like focus, put your energy in what you know, because you know what you're good at. You know what happens. You get that you get the buzz from it. You know what sits right with you. You know, where you're aligned. So go with that and work on that because that's sort of how I live my life. Everything that I know that I'm not people always said, oh, you should go into acting. I'm like, I can act up tomorrow when I need a couple things. But I'm not an actor. I'm not. I know I'm not. So I would just do what why are we going to do that? The same way when I left the group, everyone was like, you're going to release a solo album. I work well in a band. I know my strengths. I'm not, you know, I'm not Beyonce. I mean, I'd love to be and I think I am after tequila, but that's a different story. But I know what I'm good at. I'm a good talker. So, you know, media and television, that's my route. That's something that I'm passionate about. So and everyone for ages was like, I bet she's in the studio and I bet she doesn't want to tell us and I bet she's doing a solo album. I'm like, I'm bloody well not because guess what? I've taken what I need from this experience and I got away with it in a band. And yes, I can sing. I'm not the best singer in the world. I'm really not. And guess what? The charts are full of amazing singers. So let me do something that I know that I can deliver and I'll work my arse off at that. What you're describing there to me sounds, it's really interesting because you're describing, like pursuing the thing where you have a degree of competency, you're good at it, but also where you have like that internal intrinsic passion.
Money doesn't buy happiness... Peace of mind does (44:22)
And like both are so important. I actually spoke to a girl the other day on a Zoom mentoring call I was doing and she'd gotten to a stage in her life where she just just and this is where the passion bits really important. She'd kind of just followed the the opportunity. So she was good at let's say maths. So she found herself at 35 as being this accountant, but she actually never cared about maths. She didn't care about being an accountant. She got dragged by the opportunity. It's like you saying, okay, I'll do the single just because I can, or I'll do my solo cray just because I can. And not taking that moment to pause and go actually, what is it that I care about? And regardless of the fact that I can do it, do I want to do it? Yeah. And of money, is this carrot that sometimes can lead us to make short time decisions, which become long time regret, right? And I've definitely done that. I've definitely done that. I've definitely thought, I've done it. I've done it with brand work before. Definitely. I've taken on a brand project. And no, and it's not really me, but the money was so bloody good. Welcome to my world. I will take all the deals. But I've got to the, do you know what I think I've got to that point now? Well, yes, and it does again come with age. It comes with I suppose more financial stability than I had before. Like I left the group and people were, and I wasn't sure what was going to happen, right? Because I'd left this group where my life was planned to a tea for me. And then I was going it alone. And I thought, well, that's good money. I should take it. I don't know what, and hi, I'm Rachelle Humes, and this is sausages. I don't know whatever. And I've definitely done that. And I'm not ashamed to say it. And yes, with I suppose more now financial stability, it's easier to be choosy, right? So this is now easier for me to say, because at the time it was like, well, I don't know when, you know, when the next one might be, you know, the next deal might come in. And do you know what, even more? So in the last sort of 18 months, if I, and this is with everything, it's now I'm so, it's the nose that are not more important to me than the yeses. And look, I come from a working cast background where my mum has always been like, hey, why the sunshine is like, this is amazing. But I've really sort of flipped the switch on that now. And said to myself, do I feel it? I put myself in this situation. This is actually mentally what I do. You're going to laugh. So if I get a phone call about something and something's come in, or because I have my five year plan of stuff that I know that I would like to do, and we will work to make that happen. But some, you know, we're also reactive. So people might call and say, we thought about the show for this, and this will be great. And I actually pretend that I'm interviewing myself on the sofa on this morning, and I have to promote it. No, do this, because it's actually mad. So if I was interviewing you about, I don't know, you, you now are being the face of this mug, right? Could you sit on the sofa and I'm not so tell me everything. So why did you want to do this? Could you genuinely say it with your gut and feel passionate about it, and believe in it, and know it works, and feel proud of that association? And there are those checklists that I do in my mind, and the questions that I would ask someone. So tell me about it. So when did this start? When did you get the phone call? How exciting is it? And if I don't feel confident in that interview, I'm not doing it. And that is my new thing. And for the past sort of year, that's what's been playing out in my mind. And it's changed the landscape for me. That's such a, I love that. I think that's so powerful. Because what it did for me then is, I was trying to think about the ways to sell this mug, right? You, I saw your face, you weren't selling it. And this is your money like that by the way. I think you actually actually actually matches the table. So there was, it does, but you don't believe it, I can tell. No, I didn't. But I was thinking of like being on this morning, and I could, and you know, I said to myself, I think I could do it once, but then getting called to, and to build a business or to pursue something, you have to do it over and over and over again for an indefinite period of time, maybe 10 years, I couldn't get for 10 years. The first time would be acting, we can all act in the short term if we have to, but acting for a sustained period of time does all kinds of damage. I mean, eventually it's going to become really hard to get out of bed to do something I'm not passionate about. And it's not just acting the once, because then it turns into the whole new word now, which is social media. So then, which I treat my social media like my home, right? I keep it tidy. I keep it nice. If someone wants to come in, I'll make sure I've tidied up the place. So my pictures are good. But you know, and I, you know, I try to visually, I'm, you know, I'm honest, but I also like it looking nice.
The highs & lows of social media as a parent (49:16)
I'm not going to post the worst part of my day. And I have respect for people that do, and I say this a lot, because I think there's become a pressure with social media that we now have to be honest constantly. And I should be displaying my stretch marks at all times. And I should be saying, my child's just, you know, I don't know, had a really messy nappy in front of everybody and they're vulnerable. I mean, I've got to take a selfie and document that moment. I have respect for you if you can do that. But I'm too busy getting myself out of the shit at the time that the last thing I'm thinking about is a selfie. Do you know what I mean? So I really, I think there's now a pressure that we all have to take that approach, which is interesting that we should be a politician. We should come, comment on current affairs. Like, look, I have a blue tick for the reason that, you know, for the reason that I'm verified. And it's not because I'm a news anchor. And it's not because I know everything that's going on in the world. And it's not because, you know, I'm constantly going to expose every part of my life. And, but I'll be the real meal there. But I just can't, if something bad is happening at home, I might be ready to talk about it in a week. But that's the sort of instant Instagram for me. So I think sounds like you've had a couple of DMs that people pushing you to talk on things. Well, I think, I think, I think you, yeah, you do. And I think it's not just DMs. I think people just expect. And I'm also really aware of that. I call it the blue tick responsibility. I'm really aware of the fact that people could take my information and it might not be correct. So I don't want to become. And I think there was a lot of that over the pandemic. People will be posting stuff before they knew the right information. And then I've, I've then become part of that scaremongering culture. And I feel, I feel it's my responsibility to report on stuff that I know everything about. And this stuff that I know everything about is myself, my brand, my right. So I think don't expect that from people that are also not in the know. Yeah, I think it's quite, it's quite a big ask actually. And obviously there's a lot I'm passionate about. And that might, you know, that might muddle in to, you know, if I know about it, and I've got an opinion on it, yeah, I'm going to tell you, but I'm not going to talk about something that I don't know about. So don't think it's fair. Let's talk about that then things you're passionate about. And sort of topics you've spoken on. The Black maternity scandal was one of those topics. I was, I was reading about why you wanted to do that documentary. And the statistics around mortality in the black community at pregnancy are pretty staggering for me. The thing that I found really, I want to talk to you about particular was there was a bit of a conversation when you decided to do that documentary around whether you were black enough. Let's, it was quite, it was quite the conversation. Let's just call it how it is. And I find it, we both got, I believe, I'm guessing here, a white parent and a black parent as well.
Michelle Rodriguez: Dealing with being a biracial parent (52:15)
It's interesting because growing up, in an all white school, I was blacker than black. I was the blackest thing anyone had ever seen. I was the night sky. And then when you go into adult life, and you also seem to get then rejected by the black community, even though you've spent your whole life thinking and, you know, being the blackest person in my circle. And I, funnily enough, I was posted on an Instagram account when I was announced as a dragon. And the debate in the comment section from this kind of like black Instagram account was all around whether I was black enough. And it was black people saying, well, he's not enough for what? For what? I don't know, to like be part of that community. Like I'm too much of a lightie. I don't even know what that means. I'm apparently I'm too much of a lightie to be to be part of that community. And I just think, I have to say it, and I just don't give a fuck. No one can find me. I just think it's pathetic. I think personally, I think it's totally fucking pathetic, like black people trying to decide whether I'm black enough to understand like my mother is Nigerian. I was born in Africa. What do I have to like, what do I have to do to be able to speak to? Yeah, I look, I I'd be honest with you, I found that really hard. And I actually found that probably the hardest thing that I've come across in my career.
Michelle Rodriguez: Colourism in the birthing mortality statistic (53:35)
I found it really. So I've background on that before we come to show. So as you said, so at the time of filming the show, there was a campaign started by two brilliant women called Five Times More and black women were five times more likely to die in and around childbirth than their white counterparts. And if you, what we say, black and brown women, but if you were from a mixed background, so I was four times as likely, if you were, if you were of an Asian background, you were three times as likely. And it basically, if you weren't white, it didn't look good for you in and around childbirth. So I got approached by a production company to go on this sort of journey into why. And at the time they asked me, I was very pregnant. And I just was like, it's a little bit too much. I found it a bit overwhelming. I was also scared about working during COVID and that, you know, the peak of COVID should I say, because we're very much still living for it. Because if you were pregnant, you were also at more risk. And then obviously, if you were of a black background, a pregnant, you were at more risk of getting COVID. And also, it was so I was just like, look, I'm going to be in my house. I will 100% because this was just a pitch at this time, right? And you know how this works. You can make a million different programs, but none of them necessarily make it on telly. So I said, look, if you think you put my name on this pitch to channel four is going to get it across the line, put my name on it. But I'm in the New Year. Once I've had the baby in October, get me just, I will, I'm here for it. I will do it. So that conversation happened. They said, yes, we would want to commission it. We'll wait for you. We'll do in the New Year. So that was that. And then fast forward to we announced that we were taping it, which was probably we'd already started, but we were announced because I think I wanted to get a couple more women that I'd found through my channel to maybe share their experiences. So I sort of did a call out on social media, announced I was filming it and did a call out to say, this is what we're filming. And it sparked conversation. It sparked a real conversation of, did you know? And a lot of people were like, yes, white, midwife had messaged me saying, I've seen this, you know, I would, I'd like to be a part of it. You know, there's a, there's lots that needs to be needs to be done here. But first and foremost, people didn't know those stats. And I think that was, for me, really important that we, we get that on a big stage. There's some women that have been doing some incredible work for years to work in tirelessly, to promote these figures and to, you know, get some sort of acknowledgement that this happens. So let's give it a big voice, right? So first of all, the conversation was, and that was the feeling of I was like, well done, I didn't know about this. And then overnight, the dial turned. There was a post that was posted on Instagram that was from another woman who is an author, a presenter that had said that she had been asked to front the same show. So this conversation has happened. And it was like, great. And then she had said, I'd been asked to front this show, which obviously I'd woken up and seen this post and was mortified. She was a darker skinned black woman. The first thing I did was DM her. This is my number. I don't know what shit has gone down here, but this is my number, give me a call. To this day, I've not heard from her. And then that sort of triggered this whole conversation of the fact that I'd taken a darker skinned woman's bread and the dial switched overnight.
Michelle Rodriguez: Colourism vs Birthing Mortality Discussions (57:36)
And I was, can I tell you, I was beside myself devastated because first of all, that isn't, I'm not whether you're white, black, I'm not stealing any woman's bread. That's not for me. So I kind of wanted to get to the bottom of this. So I called Channel 4. I was like, just tell me has anybody, because I was on the pitch, right? So I was like, this is bizarre, because we pitched this together. Has anybody been asked to house this apart from me? Because I'm not cool with this. And this isn't, I'll do it with her. We'll do it together. But this isn't the way that I work. And she hadn't been asked. And obviously, as I said, there's lots of shows that are being made. So I'm not sure if there was another production that she'd maybe had word with and maybe it started making something similar that I don't know. And it's probably more than likely. So obviously it sparked this debate around colorism, which is also a great conversation to be having. We don't have that conversation enough. But it wasn't the debate we were trying to spark. We were talking about maternal mortality. So it sort of snowballed into this chat. And colorism most definitely exists. I'm aware of that. I might be lighter than one woman, but I'm definitely darker than some. That's how my life has been. So in a way, I was like, look, this is at my expense. And this conversation that sparked is incorrect. And it isn't, this isn't how it went down. However, it sparked a conversation that I'm not going to release a statement and stop it and say, listen, it wasn't, and I'm not going to out another woman for saying the wrong answer, because that isn't me. So I let it, I let it go because I just thought, do you know what? That's also a conversation worth having. Yes, to some, I definitely have it a lot easier because I am lighter skinned. But as I said before, I'm also darker than some. So I understand it. So I let that conversation play out for that reason, because the more we talk about these things, the better, right? However, it was harsh and it was a hard pill to swallow because in this instance, this isn't, it wasn't it. I felt really hurt because I was, first of all, I was being denied of my black gene. Yeah. First off, secondly, the community that I'm making this show for, and that we were fighting to get this on TV was the first documentary of this kind being made. Weren't happy about it until they saw it. And I was like, just wait and sit, because it's actually not about me. It's about the brilliant women that have been brave enough to take part in this dark. So yeah, it was a really weird period of time because I genuinely didn't know how to handle it, because I then I then put the show on the other foot and then I said, okay, so if I'd been asked to do this, which I had to do this show, put my name on it to get this commissioned. And I said, no, if you think it's going to get commissioned, but we really feel rushed that by putting your profile to it, we'll get it across the line. And if I'd have said, no, am I not then doing my bit for the black, am I not then doing what I should be doing? And so I really, it was a, yeah. Imagine, imagine, imagine that story broke. Michelle was asked to do this documentary about the increase in the staggering statistics and mortality in Black women at childbirth. And she said, no, imagine that you would have got the same. This is a lose, lose situation. You can't win. And that's how it really felt. And I think that was the biggest frustration. And also in all of this, so this big conversation happened, fine. Okay, I get it. And I'm not saying that colorism doesn't exist because it really fucking does. And it's awful.
Dealing With Challenges And Finding Balance In Relationships
The modern-day obsession with posturing online (01:01:20)
And it's unjust. And it isn't right. And there's a lot of work to do in that space. And I think that will be something that exists for a very long time, unfortunately. However, that it wasn't it. And it wasn't right to make this situation about colorism. And yeah, I just found it a real struggle because at the same time, and there was a lady called Mars, who's just a brilliant woman, she's a doula. And she has been campaigning for this disparity for a very long time. And she said, the thing that you're forgetting, she called me because she saw it all go down. She was like, are you all right? Are you okay? And I literally burst into tears. I was like, I'll be back. And she was like, you're forgetting. You've lost yourself out of these stats because being a mixed woman, you are still four times as likely to die than a white woman. You're losing yourself in this two and your children. And the three. So you are still very much part of those stats. So let's not lose this here. You know, these the stats are about black and brown women. So I had to remember, and there was talk of we had a meeting at my management, are we going to pull out of this? Should we just pull out of this? Because, and I was like, no, do you know what? I'm not because it's not actually about me. And they will learn that when this program airs. Because these brilliant women have trusted me to protect their stories. We were so careful. We had one director, a black female director, and it was just we didn't have a soundie. We didn't have any whole crew. We turned up to these women's homes. And we protected, we wanted them to feel safe. So it was just her and I, and they could tell their story. And we didn't want to sort of make them relive their trauma in a way that wasn't going to be helpful. So we it was, we did it in the best way that we could. And what's interesting is, I've had so many different letters since saying I'm so sorry that we wrote this article because actually we watched the show and it's not what we. So it's just funny that when I talk about that blue tick responsibility, one post can set a whole community alike when actually it was incorrect. And that's why I think we all need to do better in our position to make sure that we're always posting the right information when we do that. Social media is very much a place of trying to hold everybody to a stand of like false perfectionism. Like as if we were all just perfect human beings, we make perfect decisions. There is correct and there is wrong on social media. There's no new ones. There's no middle ground. There's no appreciation for like complexity and how, okay, this is right. But also this is right that that conversation doesn't happen because we're the algorithm pushes us into these tribes where we're either left or right. When you're trying to be true to yourself, when you're trying to speak on issues that matter, it's almost it's almost impossible in the age of social media. And what I really like about what you've described there is there was this intense pressure to like fall in line with correct with what when I say correctness, I don't mean that it's right. I mean, like the like false correctness. This is, you know, it's like a mob screaming in your face. Rachelle, this is correctness. Stop. Do come and join us. Yeah. On the side of false perfection and come and and you had the, I guess the, I wouldn't even describe it as courage because that doesn't feel like the right word.
Why protecting the women in the documentary kept her going (01:04:51)
But you had the sense to say, I'm going to do this anyway. A lot of people don't have that these days. A lot of, I find it so incredibly like, I'm someone who's probably at some point going to get canceled because I really, when you describe that story to me, it just pisses me off so much. Yeah. But you have to sit on it. I know. But with this, it was different because of the reason I was doing it. Yeah. So I was like, look, I don't want to say anything because there's a lot of noise happening. I've not even said anything yet. Yeah. And might the old me, what we were talking about would have just gone, but really, I didn't want, if I spoke on it, it would be another Daily Mail article. And the noise would have just, it would just kept, you know, snowballing out of control. So I was just like, look, I'm not doing this. It's not about me. It's about, I had a job in my mind and my mind. And that's what kept me going because those women that I'd spoke to, it was for them. And the whole time I was checking there, okay, with this, look, do you think, and I was getting their take on this? And if they had said to me at one point, Rush, I actually think maybe step down from this. I would have done, genuinely, I would have done. But they had trusted me and I'm not going to let them down. We're thinking about the bigger picture here. And I think so it was that. So I just, I just kept silent on it because I thought, what is it, the queen? You don't, like the queen of someone said to me once, you never, you don't explain and you don't complain in certain situations. I was like, I've never done like the queen in my life, but I'm going to put it to you right now. Because I didn't want to make it about me. I didn't want to make it about the fact that, general, actually, I was scared taking my kid to nursery that day because I got death threats. I didn't want to make it about, do you know what I mean? It's not about me. It was about the bigger picture. And I think I just had to hold on to that. Marv did take my phone off me there. Smart. I love my, I love my phone for the weekend. He was like, that is going off. And he literally texts everybody that works with me and was like, if you need to hear, I'm here, but like no more phone. You're right. If you had responded, it would have been a feel for the fire. And I think when those moments happen, people are intent on misunderstanding. That's what it feels like. They are trying. So even if you'd come with your explanation, honestly, the lens in which they would have viewed your explanation or your side of the story is like, where can we find another fucking letter twist? Exactly. And I thought, do you know what? It's too tiring. And then if I say something, then somewhat, like you said, yeah, but you still did it.
The hardest time in your life - the voicemail leak (01:07:34)
And then I would have to have gone back to that. And I think it's a never ending. Yeah, it's a never ending cycle. But that definitely was like, navigating through that was probably the hardest thing I've actually been through ever. Would you, would you have, if you could now have raised that experience and not have gone through it, would you? Yeah. You would have raised it. Yeah. I'd have raised the, I wouldn't have raised doing the show and doing, I would have raised that day and that, that it was just awful. But didn't it teach you something? Because you'd be erasing the lesson it taught you as well, if you raised the experience. Yeah, you're right. You are right. Yeah. I'm going to give you an eraser. Would you erase that day? No. A little bit. Just touch it up. No, do you know what? I think, I think you're right. And I actually think that happened at the start of this year. And do you know what you were, we were saying, like over the past year, my whole outlook has changed on a lot of things. And maybe you're right. Maybe it has also come from experiences like that that have taught me not to, you know, not to react so quickly. And not, I think sometimes we're so quick to jump up to our own defense, because I don't want someone to think I'm that person. And I don't want them to think that I would do that to another woman. Guess what? I know, I would never do that to another woman. That isn't me. The first thing I did when I saw that was message her and say, babe, here's my number, call me, because that isn't me. But do I need to defend that to a whole lot of people that have already made up their mind? No, because it's exhausting. And you're not, I'm not achieving anything. So I think sometimes we're so desperate to, to defend ourselves and put out a statement to say, actually, this isn't what happened. And you know, justice. Yeah. Because it sounds a lot like what we described with the relationship with your father is that that need for justice ends up being really self-harmon. Yeah. And accepting acceptance again is the, Yeah. And because I know I was coming from a place of love, I was coming from the best place in the world. People are saying things like, Oh yeah, you just, you've got, you've got enough money, give it to a presenter that didn't have that opportunity. I'm like, I didn't take the money from the show. That's what you don't know. I gave it to the charity and order that I was working with. I didn't take a penny from that event. If anything, it cost me money. So, but was I going to write that in a statement and to make myself look like a, you know, look like the angel? No, because it wasn't about me. And I think sometimes it is just taking that, like, you don't have to jump to your defense to prove that you're an incredible person all the time. It's just, I know where it was coming from. And sometimes it's enough and it's exhausting. Yeah. Because someone's always going to have something to say. Always. Always. Especially on social media. Always, yeah. I've got into the place where I can open my DMs and I'll be reading it and it'll be like, love the podcast. You're amazing. Love the podcast. You're amazing. And the one guy goes, make these podcasts a proper shit. And you look at it and you go, do you laugh now? I do. Our screens shut out and go, well, we're shutting down the podcast. Brian from Scum Talk with like a egg avatar has decided. I know. But this, but this is exactly it. Right. And there was that, that time when that proved, I turned everything off. I turned off comments. I turned off. And then I just was like, right, I'm not dealing with this. I'm just going to live my life. I literally cried for 48 hours and was devastated. It was really weird. Made a rush dinner. Mark had my phone. And then I remember him that week going, well, I think you can be all right now on this. Because I was like, right, let's let's cancel filming this week. Because I also didn't want it to affect the contributors thinking, oh, we now can't be part of this show, which we thought we were because now we ride the black community. Don't approve of, you know what I mean? So there was a bit of that. So I was like, let's stop filming this week. And we'll go back to it. And we're all have had some sleep and we don't feel too emotional. And so that's what we did. We picked it up the following week. So I took that week off and Rebecca that works with me, she Marvin was on the phone, Tony said, right, can you just do me a favor before you give it back? So just clear the DMs. And then she was actually like, look, is that she not as bad as you think?
Shutting down the podcast for someone that called Hannah Bateman (01:11:56)
And whatever, whatever, you know, it's fine. We move. We know the intention. And she sent me a screenshot following my messages. It was like, you're canceled to me. You're this or that. You're, you know, there was a few of them. And then it was like, can you just tell me the recipe is your risk potato? And then the next one would be like, I had so much respect for you before, but I can't believe what you've done. And then it would be like, where's your dress from when you were? So it was, you know, it's just like, do you know what that is just? And I also think it was that period of time where everybody was locked down. And it was like, everyone was on their phones more, which became like everybody came out. And it was like, it felt just that such an attack. I was like, do you know what the reality is? Sometimes you're not going to get everything right. And deep down, I really don't think I would have handed anything differently because I know where it came from and the place. But you're not always going to get everything right. And not everyone is always going to be impressed with everything you do. And I think that was maybe, maybe that's why it was the hardest time, because maybe it was the first moment in my career that blindsided me, that I wasn't in control of, that someone could have said something that wasn't quite the truth. And I had no control out for that. And yeah, so maybe that's why I found it because I wasn't, you know, normally I'm I know what I'm doing. I go on telling, I do my thing, I do this, or I've released a single and it come, but I just didn't know I could, that that was possible. And I think that's probably why it got me in the gut. You talked a little bit there about earlier about, you said, made a comment that you've never had one like this when describing Marvin.
Finding balance and having a supportive partner (01:13:40)
And I can see there, you know, he's he's doing a lot to shield you and protect you by taking your phone and kind of being a human shield from a lot of that chaos. And you also said earlier in the conversation that your business is all consuming. Yeah. So how do you find that balance? Because I'm in a relationship now, and I struggle with the balance of being my professional Steve and all that stuff. And they're having to like switch off and fall into a different mindset where there's no like KPIs and it's not about profit and like, you know, my girlfriend just wants to do simple things, watch movies, watch something about IOS, scare and Peru, like, and I have to kind of compartmentalize. But like, how have you and you've had a, you know, outside looking in again, it's important to say that because we or we never know what's going on. Yeah, we talked about families. So it looks like you guys have had a really solid relationship. How have you achieved that? How do you find that balance and what's the key? I think we just have this real understanding of one another. And I think we both really appreciate how lucky we are. Like, that's something that we always say, like, I can say it from my point of view, because I feel very lucky to have him. I'm not going to say why he's lucky to have me. But why is he lucky to have you? Oh, God. I'm joking. No. Well, no. So I can only speak for me, but it's something that we always agree on. Like, he really is my calmness in the chaos. Like, if that makes any, and he always has been, he's got that real calm in demeanor. And he really is that for me. So we've always, we've always both had a real respect of how lucky we are in this world that it's kind of like that we are in to find somebody that's solid. Like, I know how rare that is. Have we nailed balance? Babe, no. We have three kids. We have full-time jobs. We're self-employed. We're winging it pretty much through life, but never with each other. He makes me feel really secure, you know? And I think that is something that's really important to me. And I don't know if that's where my dad comes into play, too, where that like he, like, we could be anywhere in the world, but if we're together and our little family, this week before we had kids, like, I'm like happy. I'm good with life. And I feel like that's why I can, I'm in a place, I'm not going to give him all the credit actually here, but I'm in a place where, in my career, I feel like I can take a lot on. Like, when I arrived today, I was like, I'm not good. I've not stopped. But I've got, I've all, that side of my life feels very content and is content, which can push me on to do other stuff. And when I say, like, I look, he'll always be like, Oh, my God, it's amazing that you've done this or that. And people will talk about it. I'm like, well, yeah, it's great, but I've got, I've got good people behind me, you know, and he is definitely at the forefront of that, for sure. You were, you talked about how you were cheated on a previous relationship.
You can't let a bad past experience ruin a new relationship (01:16:42)
Often when people are go through that, when they've gone through that kind of deception and dishonesty from a partner, they go into the next relationship, kind of holding it, the next person, like a responsible for the last person. And I see that a lot of my DMs, I had this conversation this other day, and I don't normally respond to this kind of thing, but she, this, this, this, this woman had sent me her screenshots with her boyfriend, and she was hammering him, going, show me your phone, and then she explained to me, she'd been cheated on in the past. So she's insecure. And she actually said to her current boyfriend, like, I think it was guilty until proven innocent. And I was like, no, honey, no, I think you're going to do so much damage by, to the foundation of the relationship by bringing that. But it goes back to what we were saying again, you do damage to yourself, because now she's feeling that she constantly has to be that person. But who's happy here? Because the boyfriend isn't happy doing that. And she really isn't. So I think that was a real conscious decision for me to not take that into this. Because I don't think you can ever let any relationship grow at its full potential if you're still dealing with old shit. And that's in friendships, that's in the workplace. But I think, yeah, for me, that was really, really important. And like anybody, until someone gives me a reason to feel a certain way, like, I'm not going to meet you and think, Oh, I met someone the other day that interviewed me and was a bit of a dick. So this day is going to be horrendous. Because, So what was that? I'm a. You're a bit of a dick, right? You're a lovely guy. We've had a very nice chat. But do you know what I mean? Like, you can't walk into every situation thinking because you had a bad time one day that it's going to be the same the next. And I think that's what I was really, I will say when I met Marv, I was very anti getting with him. Didn't they tell you not to get with someone in a boy band? Yeah. Anyway, yeah, did. We really know me and Frankie, they were like, it's really going well, girls, you know, you've worked well, the singles are going down well. The worst, the only thing that you could do now, you know, after we'd worked, so we didn't have that overnight success. I was saying, the only thing you could do, because it's a really hard thing to get girls to like girls, girls love to be fans of boys and boy bands, the only thing you can do to mess it up. Now you've got the girls on side is to date someone from boy groups. And you're looking at Frankie. Was on this meeting at the record label. She was at the time she was dating Dougie from McFly. And I was obviously dating Marv and I was like, well, fuck this, I don't know. So it was kind of like, we tried to keep it a secret for so long. And I remember like sneaking into one of Marv's gigs. And I was watching from the sound desk and a girl come up to me and she said, you have ruined my life. I was like, oh, I think I know what he meant the other day. She was like, with intent, like she was like, you have ruined my life. And I was like, how, I couldn't really hear. And then the third time I was like, oh, I totally understand. And the eyes, I knew what she meant. Like, I remember being like, that's mad. Because she wanted both in. Yeah. And I remember thinking, oh, okay, then this isn't going to be a stripper. But now the other side, oh, these years later, reunion tours. I don't get that anymore. I don't get that anymore. And now I'd be like, well, babe, listen, you've got a contender of snoring. You've got to deal with it. I think it's my list of reasons why I've probably helped your life.
Gender Roles Stereotypes And Self Management
In This World, Dads Step Up To The Plate. What's It Like to Have Marvin as the Modern Man? (01:20:33)
What's he like as a father? Oh, the best. Like, do you know what's mad? It's I kind of, when I when I speak about this, it's, it's a really weird thing that sometimes sits with me odd. And not because of my dad and my childhood, actually, because we spend a lot of time going as a society, people will say, you're so lucky. Marv is such a good dad. I'm like, uh-huh. He is. And my children are lucky to have a good dad. I get that. Totally get it. Because I didn't have that. I really get it. But at the same time, there's always a part of me that goes, he's doing what he should be doing. And we do all that. Oh, it's daddy daycare today. No, he's just taking his kids up. No one says it's mommy daycare today. Or it's, well, they're lucky to have a good mum because it's assumed you should be a good mum, right? You should be a good mum. You should be able to have a career. You know, be be a hot girl for your fella. You should be an amazing man. There's a lot of pressure that's put on women. In that perspective, I really, really think so. And I think, so yes, he is an amazing dad. And he is devoted, and he is patient, and he is everything I'd want him to be. Everything that I would have wanted for, you know, of a dad. But really, at the same time, I'm like, no, guess what? He's stepping up to the plate. And I'm not taking anything away from him because I really appreciate him. And we really do in my house. He's a rock. But at the same time, we live in this weird world where it's like, you get a clap for being a great dad. But if you're a mum and you're working, you're like, Oh, she's out to work.
The Double Standards Women Face. In the Mum/Businesswoman Role and Why It's Pressurizing (01:22:18)
Is she not going to make the activity on time? You know, there's that like judgment for doing what dads do if you're a mum. It's a really weird concept. And it's something I wasn't aware of until I had kids. So true. I've actually never thought about that before, but that is so incredibly true. It's like a dad has given a trophy. Daddy, take care. He's taken them out again for the day. Unbelievable human. I literally did that every day this week, but no one said anything. It's bizarre. It's bizarre to me. Earlier on, you said you talked about a five year plan. Yeah. So what is the Rachelle Himm's five year plan? So in career, it would be TV. I feel like I've got enough. I feel like I don't want to I don't want to saturate myself with stuff. So I'm trying to find a real balance of they're not being an announcement every other week of something else I'm doing. And I'm so excited to announce now do I'd like balance. So I would I love the fact that me and Marvin have a show together that's a Saturday night entertainment show, which is a family show, which is music. It couldn't be it couldn't be more perfect for us. I love that. So I would love that to run until the end of time. I love what I do when I dip in and out of daytime television. That suits me in terms of my business. I want it to keep growing at the rate that it is. That's really important to me. I obviously now manage myself, which is a very different thing. And that was something that was really crucial in my five year plan. Tell me why you made the decision to move away from external management and to manage yourself.
Managing Yourself (01:23:53)
And what does it mean to manage yourself? I've got my manager in the corner there. So sell me on the upside. This could get bloody awkward. So I I've been in this industry in different forms since I was 12 years old. So I was in a couple of juniors when I was 12, and then did presenting for kids television. Then obviously went into the group and then I went back into telly after the group ended. So I've always had a level of guidance throughout this because it's something that we all need. It's a crazy world. But I've always sort of been at the mercy of somebody else. And I think I've been really lucky over the years to work with some of the best management teams in the industry. I really, really have. And I feel there was a time where I was desperate to be managed before all of this. I'm not a money-chair and I want to maybe I can make this happen for me. And then I got to a point where I feel like in terms of TV, in terms of what I do for branding or for how my job looks, I feel like I'm not trying to build a name for myself anymore in the sense of a lot of the execs that these the channels know me. They know what I can do. If they want me for a certain thing, they're going to book me. And yes, I will always pitch ideas and I'll have my own ideas and they might take more than that. But I got to a point where I feel like in terms of that, I'm happy in what I'm doing. And really, nobody knows me better than I know myself. It felt like a new challenge. I felt like I didn't want to be part of a big corporate firm where people it takes people quite a while to get an answer, whether I want to do X, Y and Z. I'd like someone to be able to speak to me or one other. And I could tell you on a WhatsApp, Rosh, she's a thank you. Don't waste any time. Let's not take months to work up and offer and present it to me because we've wasted everybody's time, so I wouldn't have done it anyway. So I just felt like I got to a real point where it sounds like control. It does, doesn't it? It really does. It's like a consistent thing. It's what this podcast is, what this episode is going to be called. But it really was actually gaining that control back. I didn't want to keep being advised of what someone thinks I should do. It's not like, OK, you're a very clever business and a clever firm. There's a lot of numbers and a lot of things I don't understand. But it's not like somebody saying to you, this is what we need to do because of X, Y, Z, and this is how this is moving. So we need to go this and this is the market we need to dominate. Really, people advising me on me because my business is me. So I know how I know what my vibe is because I am the vibe. I'm the vibe, yeah. So I think I just got to a point where I thought it's time to empower myself and trust in that because there were ideas being thrown around that I'm like, oh, no, this isn't, oh, this is so far off of me. So yeah, I had a real realisation and it was quite an emotional thing too because it felt like a weird sort of like a breakup. You know, we've had a really good road, but I don't want this in the same way anymore. And it felt more that was the hardest thing to do because I don't know, I'm setting people and we've built friendships over the years, which I hope still remain and I'm sure they will. But it was that that was harder than the actual decision, which told me everything. And do you know what? Some of this is your fault. Thank you for coming, Rachelle. We've got a grandpa podcast. Because you said something and I think you- Don't listen to what I say. No, I did. I watched you talking and you'd said, who would you met someone? You met a bomber? Oh, you spoke to- 51% That and I was like, this is it. And I literally the next day, I called them the next day. So it's actually sort of your fault. So cut the context on that is when I saw me and Obama both spoke on the same stage in Sao Paulo a couple of years back in Brazil. And one of the things he talked about on stage was when he had to make the decision whether to take out a Samar bin Laden or not, they didn't have all the information. They have like tip-offs and they have little snippets of information that suggest bin Laden is hiding in that complex Pakistan. But they never know 100% and there's lives at risk. He's sending in 20 or 40 American soldiers to fly into Pakistan at night in these helicopters. And if they get caught, if they get shot down, then he's going to have to sit with that for the rest of his life. But he says when you're the president of the United States and you have these huge decisions to make, you're never going to get to 100% certainty. So what he did, which I really do believe in is once you get to 51% certainty on your decision, then make it and be at peace that you did the best with the information you had because so many people, and this is kind of what he didn't say. But what I took from it is what ends up happening is the procrastination of the decision ends up costing you more in the long term than actually just making the decision and finding it out if you're right or wrong. Because it's the same in business. If I'm thinking about something but I'm not entirely sure but I suspect it's the right thing, I should just go ahead and make the decision and then find out hopefully in the next couple of months whether I was right, if I was wrong, I can actually just reverse the decision again. But a lot of people spend like years remunerating over these like relationship decisions or work decisions or professors, they cost themselves 10 years, which does more damage than the decision itself at 51% would have done. Exactly that. So, and I honestly, it was like I listened to that at the best time when the next day I did it. And I honestly felt the reason that I knew as soon as I'd done it, that I knew it was right. Well, I knew anyway, but the reassurance I had is I felt the emotional side of it, I hated, I hated, you know, the phone call and the meeting and the letting people feeling like I've let somebody down and in the sense of upsetting them because they would have probably liked to have continued working together. So I felt I don't want to upset anyone. It's not bad blood. It's just making a decision that I need to make for myself. And I felt shitty, first of all, because I felt that, Oh, God, do you think they're really upset? Do you think? But that's all I felt. Everything else I felt like I had just had a massage and a white was off my shoulders. And I was like, okay, right now we go. Isn't it funny how we always know? We always know. I was ready. I felt like I needed to celebrate. The only thing I felt bad about was potentially upsetting somebody. But everything else was right. Everything else there was like, I felt like, Oh, thank goodness I've done that. There's so many people listening to this podcast now that know the answer to a decision. And in fact, because of that psychological discomfort associated with making the phone call, letting someone down, they procrastinate it off into the future. But they know you know, like I always think with a major decision to my life, especially the ones which I really did dither and procrastinate over and regretted not making quicker, I knew early. And I actually talked to myself out of it because I was trying to avoid that discomfort of confronting it. And that's what it is. It's the like, when I say confrontation, and it's not in the aggressive sense, it's that actually having to deliver that news. That's the what some when you know something's right. And you know that it's something you want to do and you are 51 plus percent sure. The hardest thing you have to do is deliver it. So do you know what I said? I was like, I've just got to put my big girl pants on as I call it. I'm going to put up my big girl pants. And if that's the worst part of this, then that is just show, you know what I mean? If that is the worst part, the worst part is that essentially you're a good person because you like you said, you don't want to upset, so you're skirting around it because you don't want to actually have to say it. But you know it's right. And that will nine times out of 10 be the worst part, I think, is delivering it because you know it's right for you and your journey and you just have to lean into that and just get the balls to and it's that once you've done it, you'll feel you will just feel so liberated. It's crazy.
The Interrogation (01:32:43)
We have a tradition on this podcast, which is a fairly new tradition where the previous guest asks the next guest a question. And I actually, I don't know if whether people believe me or not, I actually don't know the question because what happens is they sign it, they pass the book to Jack and then Jack places this in front of me the next time we have a guest. So I'm going to read this one for you. What would you like to pay attention to that you don't currently pay attention to and why? Oh, that's a really good question. Do you know what I would like to pay more attention to?
Questions And Reflections
What Can I Pay More Attention To? (01:33:18)
This isn't, I'm not a bad person, by the way, you don't need to worry. I would really like to pay more attention to my dog. Okay. Is this really, is this really a simple answer? I know. However, I work a lot in the day, Marvie mucks evening, so he's around a lot in the day. So he does all the stuff with the dog. But when I walk through the door, she loves me so much, so unconditionally, I think I've not even seen you all day and she's around and you know, yes, we've gone out for the walk and I'm doing the kids and then I've got work, you know, and then I think, oh, I've not really like laid on the sofa and really like made the most of it. It almost feels undeserved, doesn't it, to some degree? Yeah. The excitement I get from my dog after I walk through the door after a month in New York. Yeah. You expect them to be pissed off in the corner like that? Like, oh, yeah, now you're rolling this time. Yeah, time to go this. Yeah. So I feel like I would like to, this is really, yeah, I'm going to sound like a really bad dog owner. I promise you, I'm not. She's, she has so much love. I would just like to give her a bit more attention. Hmm. Rishal, thank you. Thank you for coming here today and having this conversation with me. It's been incredibly inspiring. It's taught me a bunch of lessons about the importance of authenticity as well and being your true self because I can tell from, you know, this brief encounter that you are, you've kind of leaned into your own authentic self and that's, and it's so evidently clear where that's taking you in terms of fulfillment and being a solid human being and your kindness and your empathy. And that's really what I take from you. There's so much inspiration surrounding how, how you're managing to juggle three kids and build this business and all that stuff. But the overarching feeling is you just feel like this very bright light. I know you're bad at taking compliments because I know you said so in an interview or two, but I've not, I've just not mastered that. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I just can't thank you. I appreciate it. Anyway, I just can't say thanks. Yeah. I just like, oh, no, I'm not. No, it's fine. This old thing. So you are, you're an incredibly bright light and that's probably also why you've built such a phenomenal community because that comes through it. Like you can't act like a good person. You either are, you aren't and you clearly definitely are. So thank you for giving me your presence today. And thank you for all the wisdom. It's been incredibly fruitful conversation for me. And I'm sure everyone listening has enjoyed it. Thank you. I've really enjoyed it. Thank you. Thank you.