Energy is Money w/ Melissa Mosher

Updated: Feb 3, 2021

Adrienne MacIain 0:01

Hey everyone, welcome to the That's Aloud podcast. I'm your hostess Adrienne MacIain. And today we're here with Melissa Mosher. What's up Moshe?

Melissa Mosher 0:11

Thank you so much for inviting me. I'm a huge fan. I just want to be wherever you are.

Adrienne MacIain 0:18

Moshe and I go way back. She's awesome. She, she can talk man, so I'm gonna shut the hell up and and let her go this episode, but I'm going to ask the first question and just see where this takes us, babe.

Melissa Mosher 0:35


Adrienne MacIain 0:36

How do you... do want to introduce yourself?

Melissa Mosher 0:38

Yeah. Why not? 'Cause that's fun. If I do my call, if I do my call and my performance well today, you'll leave this episode feeling exhausted, motivated and inspired. Why? Because my name is Melissa Mosier. I'm the savvy ninja, living, loving and breeding online content, business and information for over 25 years. And when I mean breeding, I literally mean that - let's grab this, grab this, pair it, marry it and go. And so the idea of I do, I love to talk, I love to share experiences, perspective, strategy, and analysis. We did a rough estimate of math and think that since I've joined chat rooms in 1994, I have potentially had 1.6 million conversations.

Adrienne MacIain 1:19

Sounds about right.

Melissa Mosher 1:22

All topics, all venues, all features. No, but that's actually not true because I'm very intentional with where I spend my time, so you'll see a lot of energy there. So the fact that I'm here and I am participating with That's Aloud, it's a big deal. This is a big deal. It is a big deal, too. But I'm so happy to be here.

Adrienne MacIain 1:42

Alright, so the first question is, what story is the world not getting?

Melissa Mosher 1:50

Which is a great question, because there are so many stories flying these days. We are in the age of story. What's your story? What's your story? What's your story? And we have everybody kind of bombarding us with our stories. And I thought about this when you asked it because I thought, well, I'm pretty often, like I live my life on my sleeve, so to speak, there's not a lot that is mysterious, or the story that's not hearing, because back to that talking a lot. But the reality is the story that I don't believe I'm telling or that folks don't know about me, you can do amazing things with crippling anxiety, and a glorious lack of self confidence. You do not actually need any of those things to be successful. They do help, they make the path easier for sure. But I think my story coming up next year with the rebrand and stuff is going to be that folks think this might look easy for me, or this is natural, or it's native. It is absolutely not. This is honed, crafted, skilled, fought against, practice some more, and then fought again. So thank you for continually pulling me out of my little tiny, quiet shell. But yeah, you can function with an amazing amount of anxiety that folks never know about.

Adrienne MacIain 3:09

Absolutely. And you know, it's just absolutely true that when you meet someone on the street, you never know what they're going through, what's going on with them. So of course, we try to be kind to everyone we meet. But before we pushed record, you started saying something to me that I think is just so important for everyone to hear, which is that your life can completely blow up. Right? The universe can take away from you every excuse that you ever had not to do the thing. And you can still hide in your apartment for four months and not do the thing.

Melissa Mosher 3:47

Yeah, yeah! So what, which is perfect. So, tying that back, couple years back, so I'm a career executive assistant corporate stooge, learned the game, did it well, if you ask me. Was able to climb the ladder, do the jobs, get the titles, get all the things. And then in about, in 2016, life fell apart. My Great Danes died unexpectedly, my career ended, well a job ended, which then triggered a career ending. I had a relationship end. And so I literally drained my savings account, got an apartment, and went and hid for four months. I only talked to my mom, I think, and a Jamaican godmother that the universe brought me, so that's interesting too. But coming out of that, and kind of where I think I was going when we were prepping, is the fact that everything is, so I have this idea of Oh, I want to make impact, I want to create connections, I want to do all these things. Life fell apart and I went Okay, I'm not sure what I'm going to do now. I sort of have this idea, but I should be going down this path of Okay, let me go get a job, let me go back and get into that thing.

Adrienne MacIain 4:57

Ah, the Should. The great and terrible Should.

Melissa Mosher 4:59

The universe just... Yeah, the Should! You should go update your resume, you should not go backwards in your compensation, you should recover from a relationship before getting into the next one. I don't know, whatever the Should is I have taken the last three years and doing the exact opposite. Like, okay, should I be living in the city? Right? We're looking here now, here I am two and a half years living outside in the middle of nowhere. So all the excuses are, I get excited, all the excuses. My job, I no longer have a distraction of this like, incredibly intense career. This consuming relationship and the business endeavors that we had together, now I don't have those anymore. I gotta pay for this expensive apartment and live in the city and do all this, hm-mm, actually you don't, you're out in the woods. Oh, you're gonna miss all your friends, nope, divorce took care of that. Don't have to worry about them. Right? And then I have like, my best friends are 74 years old. I kid you not. They've lived next door to me where I used to live for 10 years, they lived in a house for 18 years. They decided like, eight months after I moved out here, I think it was about eight months, and they said we've decided we're going to sell our house and we're going to buy an RV and we're going to move to Discovery Bay, which is 15 minutes away from me. So here are your best friends, here is rent that you can pay in your sleep doing nothing, I'm going to take away your jobs, I'm going to take away everything. I feel like the universe has literally said All your excuses are gone, this is now on you. And then about, I don't know, four months after that whole 'stop with your excuses' epiphany happened, you came into my life again and went Hey, remember all those excuses, remember those things? Remember you were going to talk and speak and whatever? Remember how I get all that out of your way now? Here's a dream. Go do it. Go do it.

Adrienne MacIain 6:58

Absolutely. So, it's a funny thing, how, and we talk about this a lot on this podcast, this is one of those themes that just keeps coming back, which is the sort of leap and the universe will catch you, but there's another side to that too, which is that even if you're not ready to leap, sometimes the universe just pushes ya. Okay? Like, it's been long enough, you know? You've been thinking about it, you've been dipping your toe in it. And the universe is like, No, no, you got to be all in, baby, you got to be all in. And so you are obviously too scared to do this by yourself, so I'm just going to help you out, and just take away everything that's not what you're supposed to be doing.

Melissa Mosher 7:41

Yeah, and like, I got goosebumps twice while you were saying that. because, and those that have like, been in the corporate world probably can relate, but that is so the counter of what I... I'm not blaming corporate, but that is so the counter of the game that I learned. Right? Because I went into it pretty intentionally. I dropped out of college and went, No, I want to make money, I want to go do that, I'm going to go, and so I feel like I was pretty good at that. But you're not necessarily told or shown or guided to, you know, self-reflect on what you want to do. I think the biggest epiphany for me in all of this, but you know, you don't have to have confidence, push through fear, all of those blah, blah, blah, are things that I share. But the idea of, I think the biggest epiphany for me in all of this is that whether life is giving you lemons, or lemonade, or whatever that saying is, is the fact that you can literally look at your energy and decide how you want to spend it. Like, that's it. When we're feeling overwhelmed and confused and unhappy, like, all of these things, and we got like, all these feelings and emotions and problems and stuff... how do you want to spend your energy? Like, bringing it back to energy, and and that's kind of where my head's been in the last year is how do I want to spend my energy, my free time, my emotional carry, my financial investment? These are all forms of energy that I think I underestimated for the last 35 or 40 years. And so now it's like, okay, time is money - no, energy, energy is money. And I want to be more thoughtfully ruthless, as the book would say, about where and how that's spent.

Adrienne MacIain 9:22

Absolutely. I think you just nailed it right there. Your energy is your life. And where you choose to spend it depends on what kind of life you're going to have and what you choose to focus on.

Melissa Mosher 9:38

To be able to take that mindset in such a way, I've got a campaign bring that goes does it spark joy? does it spark coin? if it's no to both it's got to go. It's just, it's got to go. And the idea of things can, I can decide how my energy is spent. So people will go Oh, but are you doing free work and paid work and blah, blah, blah? No, here it's energy, right? It's energy. This thing, whether currency, like, monetary currency is not the only form of collaboration, that's not the only transaction that we have. Yeah, I can do free events all day long, but if it's for audiences making, you know, less than minimum wage, chances are they're not going to hire me as a one-on-one coaching client. But does that free opportunity give me stage time? Does it give me practice? Do I get to look at strategy? Do I get to practice these, you know, these mental muscles of triaging and level setting where does my priority go? And I think being an EA, executive assistant for so many years really has given me a leg up on that. Now to the point where I'm almost like one of those alert dogs - wasted time, wasted time, waste of time, waste, waste, waste. If it is not, now that I'm like, in the CEO seat, if it is not three steps to coin, I don't have time for it. It's gotta go. Like, that can go into queue never. I don't have time. Right?

Adrienne MacIain 10:59

That's so true.

Melissa Mosher 11:00

And so this idea of like, indexing to paper.

Adrienne MacIain 11:04

Yeah, I just I love that so much because, you know, as a former EA myself, I absolutely agree. I think the thing that, the part of it that I was actually really good at was helping my guy, you know, stay focused on what really freakin' matters. And like, don't get caught up in all the reactive stuff. Don't get caught up, you know, this is just thrown on your plate and suddenly you think you have to drop everything and deal with it. No, no, it don't work like that.

Melissa Mosher 11:32

No, they just want you to catch it and triage it. Right? I have also learned in my experience, like I've got this last couple years, I had subcontractors. Right? I learned I'm really good at guiding a strategy and tactics, but I'm a terrible manager. I'm gonna forget about you unless you are in my face asking me what do I need, you know that that kind of hungry individual. Then once you're in my face, you have my full attention, whatever you need, right. And so I'm sitting there going, alright, I need to get stuff done. I know I can't do everything. Like, I'm sitting on both sides of it. And then boiling it back down to I've hired, I hire people to teach me things, right. Messaging coach and entrepreneur, implementer, and all these other things I'm going, but at the end of the day, where's the coin? Oh, man, I need to call every exec, every exec, if I was an exec that supported you, I want to apologize for double-booking you. I want to apologize for booking back-to-back. I want to apologize for not giving you the information you need to go into meetings and appointments and make the decisions that need to be made in that appointment. And so I'm sitting here kind of, I'm also a Libra, too, so I'm always in this like balance mode, but now I am so indexed into Do not waste my time, I have so much to do. And it's a different set of urgency than being in corporate, right, because we still had much to do. But yeah, this idea of staying focused, yeah, you got to admin yourself.

Adrienne MacIain 12:57

Yeah, well, and not only that, I think that people don't even know what their priorities are so much of the time. Yeah.

Melissa Mosher 13:06

Or they're not able to pull the task from the process. So these are like a couple of my coaching students. So I'm coaching students. It's the idea of like, we talked about follow-ups, let's use as an example, right? Oh, I need to email you know, I need to follow up with that person. That is not 'go send an email.' That's a task within the process of responding. Go review your notes: do we have the attachments? Am I responding? What was the last thing I said? Am I giving an action for forward da-da-da-da-dah? So I feel like, in my world right now, folks are confusing process and task, and just getting so overwhelmed. So they don't necessarily know what's most important. Another example, Oh, I've got this new contract app! I'm going to put all my invoices and contracts, and it's gonna be this whole big, lovely workflow. This gal reached out to me and says, I want to do that. Great. We start talking strategy. Okay, what kind of packages do you want to host, da-da-da-da-dah? Well, this is due tomorrow. Okay, screw the app. We do not need the app right now. What we need is Google Doc, and we got to get the words right. Right? And so the idea of in her mind, she knew, okay, I've got to get a quote, be prepared to execute this contract and do all these things, right, but I'm struggling. She doesn't know it at the time, but this app, and I don't know how to put my contracts in, I don't even know that my contracts right! Okay, wait, that's not important. Actually, the important thing is getting a doc to this person tomorrow if the conversation goes well, and so I feel like now that's really where especially the EAA skill set comes in, is to be able to separate task and process.

Adrienne MacIain 14:45

Yes, I think project management is one of those skills that is super undervalued, but desperately needed.

Melissa Mosher 14:54

Yes, I've ever requested from a project manager, Can you make an infographic on project management, and she goes Yeah, what would you do? Like, we were just chatting and I go, Oh, I'd just like it to be how to solve a problem. Do you know the answer? Yes? Then you're done. Do you not know the answer? No? Okay, here's what we do. Right? And this idea of having a project managers mindset.

Adrienne MacIain 15:16

Yeah, absolutely. One of the things that I've been doing more and more as I'm getting more into creation coaching is what I'm calling it now, where I'm really helping people take their imaginations and make them into realities. And because I think, you know, people don't really need me to tell them like, Here's your idea, right? Like, it's helpful to have someone reflect back like, Okay, here's what your idea actually is, here's who it's for, blah, blah, blah. What they need is someone to hold their frickin hand through the entire process until Oh, okay, here's the actual project completed. And especially as creative types, I think people just never learned how to think strategically about their time management and about, Okay, this is an important creation that needs to get out in the world. How do I actually make sure that happens? How do I keep myself accountable to my own stuff?

Melissa Mosher 16:14

And managing all of the other parts and pieces. So I have a couple creatives that, like, I joke and say I'm not a coach, I'm a consultant. I don't care if you win or lose, here's the data. No, but you know what I mean? Like, I'm very much Here you go, here's what I think, you can do what you want, take it make it your own, right. But I've noticed that with creatives, too, that's a blind spot I have because... or I have a blind spot compared to what the creatives do. Like, I just manage my week. I know that if a client emails me, I don't drop everything I'm doing and go down that rabbit hole. I'm gonna get to email on Tuesday, that's when I get that stuff. So for what that's worth, like, I'm the idea, I'm the innovation Queen, right? So the idea of mixing that creative plus EA administration, accounting, accountability, sort of piece, I have had more non admins paying me for simple things like Can you help me time block or manage? Like, I don't know how to manage myself as a business. Going like, well, things I can picture you doing, because this is how I think my brain thinks, is like when you have creative spurts, how do you help coach and guide your creative? Me, I say write that down, get back to it. But I'm not a creative in that type, because I've got Look, no, we got these things. But being able to help guide them back to energy, right? You have energy. How are we going to spend it? Yeah, we can spend 10 hours on figuring out a contract platform, but even if we get it perfected, is that going to get you coin?

Adrienne MacIain 17:41

Right? Probably not. And certainly not going to spark your joy.

Melissa Mosher 17:45

No, no.

Adrienne MacIain 17:48

Yeah. I love that. I love that. Does it spark joy? Does it spark coin? I mean, those are, that's really what it's all about. Right?

Melissa Mosher 17:54

And it has to have at least one of the two. Like, long pole goal, it has both joy and coin. If we tag back to the corporate days, right, everybody has a price. My friends, I found my price. I know how much my soul cost, how much you can put on that check, and I will say yes. And it'll add to the point where the job actually just about kills me, right? So you can sit there and go Great, here's the money here. The coins here. The coins here. I'm making all the coin, actually more than I had planned. Dang, you mean I need joy too? That's probably one of my biggest disappointments. And it was a disappointment in my four months of hiding. You mean to tell me after 15 years of doing this, coin don't make me happy in and of itself?

Adrienne MacIain 18:46


Melissa Mosher 18:47

I have no hobbies. Like, to this day, I have no hobbies. You know what my hobbies are? Working. Making two other side businesses. I've got an RC business kind of brewing too. So, no hobbies, right. I have no outs. I have no non-currency interests. Like, my brain is so wired for energy now that even down to if I'm going to play a video game, is it going to be something that I can teach somebody on, make money with, and stream? You know what I mean? So it's like, Wait, you mean just getting money, just getting coin's not enough? Mm hmm. I thought it was gonna be, you know?

Adrienne MacIain 19:28

Right. And the thing is, so many people don't realize that by following what sparks joy, you actually can get the coin. Maybe not right away. Maybe not right away. But if you're creating value, and that value is unique, somebody's gonna pay for that.

Melissa Mosher 19:48

Yes, yes. Because here's the epiphany of all of this. Like, I love this, like you were like, Whoa, hustlers and how do you do it? It doesn't matter. Here's the thing. None of us are special enough that we're the worst.

Adrienne MacIain 19:59


Melissa Mosher 20:02

Like, I have a Hustler's Academy. We had eight students in it this year. And I said, Look, ladies, because they're all ladies, I was like, Look, ladies, I really wish you were the absolute worst because we could market that, but you're not, you're so amazingly average and capable. And me too. Me too, like, average in a good way. We are not so awful that you can't do this. What do you need to get a hustle? To start hustling, people? Like, what do you need to start hustle? One service, one client, a process to move them through? That's it. That's it. So the other side of the spark joy and coin? Yeah, it can spark joy all day long, but girlfriend, if you've got no food in your fridge, your joy is out of balance. Right? So I think for me, I was so fearful of being in that, Oh, I'm gonna be joy. You know, right? So I focused on coin because I was like, alright, no matter what happens, and to some extent that was true. When my life fell apart. I had positioned myself in such a way that I could take care of myself. Right? Now I'm sitting here at the time of this recording, I'm 40 years old, not married, no kids, no nieces, no nephews, nothing. Do you know what my goal is now? Taking care of myself when I'm 85? Do you know how I'm going to have to do that? With a big old pile of money. You don't have to do it this time? With some joy. Right? So the drive and the intent and the money and all that stuff is there, but it's this balance that I've learned. And people always talk about Oh, yeah, it's balance. Look ya'll, if I could tell somebody something, you all would have educated me at 16 and I would have come out a perfect human. But we have to, like, experience these things. And I undervalued joy.

Adrienne MacIain 21:38

I think most people do. Well, I think most people undervalue their own gifts, is the bottom line. That we, what brings us joy, we think must not be important. Because it's just fun, right, and fun is not important. So when you start thinking about things energetically, and looking at how your core-desired feelings is actually what you're trying to get, all this other stuff that you do is just about that. Suddenly play, suddenly joy, suddenly creating these happy feelings for yourself becomes important again.

Melissa Mosher 22:21

Yeah, I could totally, like, staring over the precipice here of like, I see joy, right? And then roping it in with that anxiety thing, too, right? Like, I mean, I had, I'm working on my pronouns, I had a pretty good career, pretty lucrative career. And folks, you know, we saw each other on stage and we spoke and stuff. But, like, the other side of that, I'd missed flights, I missed interviews, I missed, you know, obscene amounts of work in one job, because of this anxiety, pressure, like, whatever those sources are, still gotta pay bills, y'all. You know what I mean? So this idea of like, I'm trying to find balance, I'm trying to, you know, did a lot of self-remedying that was not necessarily remedying, but thought that was what I needed to do at the time, getting swept up in the corporate socializing, right, when we think about joy. At the time, I can remember going, Oh, joy, I'm going to be at happy hours, and I'm going to show like, I love my job. But it's still all centered around this what other people think of you, do they like your service if they do in this? And when you're in the machine, you don't actually, for me, I couldn't, like, pull out and go, You know what? I'm actually not social. I actually don't like any of this. And the reason why, so had this epiphany: for years, I thought I was a people person with anxiety problems. Turns out I'm an introvert with people problems. Because since quarantine, yeah, bullets and, you know, all of this other stuff. Like, there's a lot of anxiety going on. I've never felt more calm, in control, grounded. Right? This idea, Well, I'm now living in the woods. You know what I mean? Like, I'm not interacting with the volume of people. So yeah, Oh, I'm an extrovert with anxiety problems. No, I'm an introvert with people problems.

Adrienne MacIain 24:23

It's so funny, isn't it, how we have this story about ourselves. And we tell ourselves that story over and over and over again until it feels very true. And then one day gets tested, and we go, 'Wait a second. That story, that's not true at all. It's not true at all.' And here I've been carrying around this story, telling everybody This is me, this is me. It's so funny, you know, I think back to when I was working at Qualtrics. And I had that same kind of experience where it was like, you know, I thought of myself as this, I was the fun one, right, I was the social one. And at PlayFab that was true, because that was, you know, that was what I, that was the value I provided to the company was that I was the kind of heartbeat of the culture. And I love that.

Melissa Mosher 25:07

That air of nurturing, that was, that's so appealing to me. Like, it's like, I wish I could install that. But yeah, you have this native layer of nurturing that just kind of wraps around people.

Adrienne MacIain 25:18

Well, and it worked really well at PlayFab because I really just resonated with that group. It was just a really smart, nerdy group of people. And those are my peeps, right? I was like, lets hang out. And then I got to Qualtrics and it was like I was with the cool kids. And all of a sudden, I didn't want to spend time with any of them. There was a couple of people that I loved, and we spent time together. But the majority of the people that I met there, I was just like, I don't get you. And I don't, like, this doesn't work for me. And so I became, like you said, I was the one who would leave early and go home. And this quarantine experience has been really interesting for me, because, and I think for a lot of people who thought they were extroverts, because it's been so peaceful, and calm, and lovely in a lot of ways. And don't get me wrong, I would be going absolutely out of my gourd if I did not have my husband here with me.

Melissa Mosher 26:17

Yeah! Right, right, right.

Adrienne MacIain 26:18

So, it's very important to me to have some kind of person that I can bounce ideas off of...

Melissa Mosher 26:24

High speed internet. I got, as long as I have a high speed, I'm good.

Adrienne MacIain 26:28

So true. So true. And that's the other thing, is just texting. I text with my friends every day, we're in constant contact even if we're not in-person contact, and that stuff has become a real lifeline to me. But I realized that the in-person interactions? Meh.

Melissa Mosher 26:49

Yeah, there's like, there's such a different type to it, too. And now that we're in this going, Okay, everything's virtual and locked down all this other, bridging that into Okay, so I'm a retired gamer, nerdy, right. Like, I've been in chat rooms, newsgroups, and online forums for 25 years, right? I see queue for life, y'all. These eight months, it seems like the world found the internet for the first time. Right? So then there's this layer of Oh my gosh, how do we, you know, keep people engaged, and remote, and da-da-dah, and all of this. And I gotta tell you, the entrepreneur world is laughing at y'all and me. You know, myself going What do you think we have been doing since the internet came here? If this idea of, Oh, well, are we going to go back to in-person? Apples and bananas, man! Worry about the apples when it's apple season, we in banana season right now. How do you deal with what you have now? Are we going to go back to in-real-life? Maybe. But I've got a client that figured out how to make $650,000 on a webinar. You know how much easier that is than doing an in-real-life $1.6 million event? Girlfriend, I'm sitting here, like, these guys are sitting here going, Dude, we'll go back to the in real life, but if we think about it in terms of market, right, these like big events. I'm biased because I'm in virtual production right now. But, the idea of they've spent so much time, labor, and energy in pivoting to virtual and building these events, experiences, platforms, there's over 26 virtual platforms now, outside of Zoom. Now, what are you going to do? Like when conferences come back we're just going to throw all that away? The internet's not going away. You've reached a new level of audience that wouldn't... Like, for me personally, the introverts in the world, y'all, if I never have to go to another in person conference again, this is a happy ninja. So now you're rather than looking at it as Ooh, how do we pivot and navigate, it's almost like the universe has given us another revenue stream. Your virtual events, your conferences, your mastermind groups, they involve the client to have academic facilitation. Right? I've got a client that we staff their producers to help teachers and students, and they sit and zoom and we do lesson, we don't do lesson plans, but we help follow things up. So it's this idea of, Okay, we have to pivot and change. No, we just opened up a new lane is really kind of what I feel like all of this has been. Oh, we gotta change! No, you have to step up. I think that's the other part too, that I was really excited about this year, especially well, admin world, there is no more death by cubicle. Thank you! You either step up or you fade out, there's no more banging on our highchairs. You are now competing with folks that don't sit in your geography in a way that you didn't do before. All of these VAs, online business managers, you know, as these big box companies start to hire out, rather than change, like, the opportunity, the door is open. If you have an internet connection and the ability to either talk or make pretty pictures, you can make money.

Adrienne MacIain 30:02

Absolutely. And there's a whole bunch of other abilities in there, too. You know? There's so many things you can do on the internet that you probably never even thought of.

Melissa Mosher 30:14

Like reading storybooks. I know you read story books. I actually had a client that reached out to me, she is a director of six libraries.

Adrienne MacIain 30:24

Oh, my goodness.

Melissa Mosher 30:25

And they're like, Hey, we can't really do the same sort of things that we do pre-COVID, pre-quarantine. That's an awesome! Now, how conversations happen? Ooh, that's another one. You never know where conversations are going. Right? So she had reached out to me initially wanting to do a replacement for a formal gala, their fundraiser thing, whether or not you want to get into should we have fundraising during COVID, blah, blah, blah, whatever. That's their world. We worked for philanthropists, and high net wealth individuals. That's their thing. So how are we going to do this virtual gala fundraising, whatever. I went, well, I'm not the person for that, but I do know a virtual event company that specializes in nonprofit fundraising, so let's bring her in and we'll chat. As we're having this conversation, the client, post-call, sends me or maybe it was right at the same call, goes, This is all great, well, and good, I like the gala list, you know, we'll do that idea and I'll work with them, the person that I referred. But I want to talk to you, M, about ways I can engage my new audience now that we're all virtual. And I'm sitting here going, I don't have a brochure: Hey, librarians! Are you looking for a way? You know what I mean? Are you looking for a way to engage your people? So what what we ended up building out was a remote Community Plan, like what do you want to do? Because for her, she felt excited that she's no longer bricks-and-mortar-bound. They did things like they got Samuel L. Jackson to read 'Go the F- To Sleep.' And you know, so you don't even think about ego. I read stories, really, how many teachers but I love just in that regard to get you in contact with - Adrienne comes in, reads a story, teacher can go in the bathroom, get off the hook for a minute and be able to go have a break. Like, I think these are the types of things now where conversation, like, story is so important. Because conversations coin comes from conversation. I have yet to find a single appearance of coin that didn't come from conversation. Now, it could be digital conversation, it could be graphic conversation, it could be audible conversation. The label on the bottom - it's a conversation.

Adrienne MacIain 32:30

Mm hmm. Gosh, that's so true. I love that. Coin comes from conversation, ladies and gentlemen.

Melissa Mosher 32:35

Yes, yes. And every conversation for me, I want it to be one step closer to coin. That doesn't mean a transaction. Right? And I think for me, I was pushing towards transactions. Money, money, money, money. To the point where once I got the gig, I actually didn't do great at it. Oh, wait, oh, I got to do the, wait, no, I gotta go get coin.

Adrienne MacIain 33:01

Yeah, I mean, once you catch yourself doing that, that is the big indicator, like, this is not what you really want to be doing. This is not the real value that you bring. Because I'll tell you, it's so funny. You're talking about stories. Okay, so I'll give you an example with two different gigs that I did recently. Okay. One is for an app, where people listen to stories to go to sleep. Right? And I got all excited about this, and we've negotiated a price, right? And then, you know, I did a trial for them and they loved it. And so then I started reading the story, and it was like, it's so slow. It's really hard for me to read. And it was like, it was just driving me crazy to read this slowly, right? And then it's so long, and I have to edit, you know, all of that. So it was like, I was so excited about this gig, but then once I got it, I was like, Ah, this is really kind of painful. Well, meanwhile, I'm talking to a guy who writes children's stories and he wants me to read these children's stories for his audience. And we negotiated a way lower price because I was like, it's kids stories, he's a retired teacher, you know, I'm not going to charge him the same as I'd charge, you know, a corporate app. And I spent so, I just put my heart and soul into the reading of this short little story, because I'm thinking about the faces of these kids as they're listening to this. Same basic idea - I'm reading a bedtime story. Right?

Melissa Mosher 34:46

But in this one's where your energy goes.

Adrienne MacIain 34:48

Exactly, exactly. And so I realized, like, Wow, this is, you know, obviously, I'm more interested in reading stories for people who are actually engaged and listening then people who are trying to fall asleep. Duh, right?

Melissa Mosher 35:04

Imagine that.

Adrienne MacIain 35:05

Subtle, subtle difference, right? But it really informs to me where I want to put my energy in the future, I thought that the sleep stories thing would be really cool because it was like a guided meditation. But it's kind of not, because a guided meditation, they're actually, like, with you and following along with you. Not trying to tune you out.

Melissa Mosher 35:29

Right, right, turn you into white noise. Well, and then I would also ask is there, you know, reflecting on the difference between doing something pre-recorded and live? Right? Noticing between that myself. Someone will ask me to do a presentation pre-recorded. It doesn't matter what the topic is on, I stumble. I'm not a scripter, I"m a riffer. Right? I'm like, I am not a scripter, but you know, they'll be like, Hey, but we'll pay you stupid money. Okay, okay. It's not what I, you know, alright, I'm gonna try it. And so, you know, I still got two more left this year. But this idea, Okay, if that's something I am going to do, I'm not saying that it's not, but yeah, we've got to adjust it. Maybe as guided meditation, maybe it's a, you know, some other thing, rather than just throwing the whole thing out, which is what I want to do. I wanna be like, No, I'm never doing pre-recorded again, I don't like it, this is not the thing. Okay, coin, though, be prepared to have a solution for it should it land. So I like, I totally dig that going, like, the things that spark joy and coin. Talking to people trying to sleep, not so much.

Adrienne MacIain 36:36

Not so much. But the thing is, you know, it's it's fine. Like, it's not, you know, I didn't hate it. I would do it again for the right price. But it's just important to know the energetic difference of taking this job versus this job. And the thing is, if this job isn't here yet, and you take this job, this job might not show up, or you might not be available when it does. Every yes is a no to something else. Something that often you didn't even know was an option and hasn't even showed up yet.

Melissa Mosher 37:10

Yeah, oh, I want that. Because oftentimes, like even per project, cuz I'm not terribly creative, but like, with clients, like I've had to fire or part ways with clients. And be stressed out and go, Look, I know I'm grounded and this is the right thing to do. But I am not loving this decision that I have to make. And I'm looking at multiple digits and things that I have to go, You know what, let's just walk away from those friends. But then, as soon as--twice now I've done that--and as soon as that has happened, another client has come in, like within two weeks. Different projects, or better, or they shine in some way. Like maybe this client wasn't responsive, now the next one's, like, beyond responsive. So I suppose slowing down to listen for that is something that I've kind of had to learn. But yeah, well, how do you, like, I was gonna say for you, how do you typically, I'd love to know how you weigh and spend your energy. You just mentioned that, you know, reading kids books is energetic. What else?

Adrienne MacIain 38:10

Yeah, so, it's a funny thing, how it's just like you said, you lose a client and you're like, sad about it, or you have to fire somebody and you're like, Oh, that sucks. And then magically the universe provides. I don't know how that happens. But when I say, like, I've learned this, that when I say no to a project, it almost always turns out to be the best thing that could have happened.

Melissa Mosher 38:33

Oh, nice.

Adrienne MacIain 38:34

If I say yes to a project that I know is not the right project it is always a disaster. I always wish I hadn't done it. Right? 'Cause you know! You know, your gut tells you this is not the right client for you, they're gonna be a pain in the butt, this is not gonna go well for you. But you're like, Oh, but I need the money. I need the money so bad. No, guess what? You need that energy. You need that energy more than the money. Right? And so, a couple of times recently, this has happened where somebody has written me and been like, Hey, I need this. And I'm like, hm-mmh. I know, I just know, like, hm-mmh. That's not gonna go well. So I very politely let them know I'm very busy with other projects or you know, this isn't what I do. And then immediately, like, immediately something else falls out of the sky. And I go, Oh, thank you.

Melissa Mosher 39:25

How validating! How validating! Surrounding yourself with the circles that feed you. Right? So just right there when you were saying like, you know, for lack of better, I'm open to the, like, you're open to the world of possibilities right? You're going no to this one, but right there you natively have an openness and acceptance for other stuff to come in. Right? Also think I'm growing out of, for lack of a better, the assistant world is built on trauma bonds, or let me say assistant relationships are built on trauma bonds. Right? We're all the defeated, the dejected, and the downtrodden. Right? And let's get into our sorry-circles, and morale-this, and this sucks. When I noticed, and I was in those and I was in there trying to rescue people, that's what I didn't realize. But also I realized I had to make the tough realization, right, I'm in this admin corporate world, I'm drinking from the same well for 15 years. I was like, Y'all, I gotta get some new influences. I need to meet women business owners, I need to meet male business owners, I want to expand out of this. Once I got out of the dejected, the downtrodden, and the defeated, guess what happened? I no longer felt dejected, downtrodden, and defeated. When I surround myself by the powerful women that speak to me, guess what, I don't have the weight of everybody else's pity and complaints. Not saying that I don't care about folks, and I do, but to the point where we have to protect ourselves, right, and go, Look, I'm not, this isn't, I can't help you with this. But know that you have enough confidence in your boundaries that hey, there's something else that's gonna come through. I feel like a lot of my corporate career was just slogging through these defeated, downtrodden relationships rather than opening yourself up.

Adrienne MacIain 41:21

That's such a good point. I think absolutely, especially, as an executive assistant, we get paired up with these people who often are, you know, they seem to be high flying, they seem to be really successful. But once you actually get to know them, you're like, Wow, you are depressed. You are a mess. And it's absolutely true that you're, what you surround yourself energetically, is what your life becomes. And so the decision to work with creatives, you know, to creatORS, is what I call them. Whether you're creating a business, or you're creating a book, or you're creating a podcast, or you're creating a performance piece, whatever it is that you're creating, if you're aware that you are a creator and you are creating, then yeah, I want to hang out with you. Because so many people just don't get that. They don't know us as creators, they see themselves as, Oh, I have to react to everything that the world is throwing at me. I had this great conversation with my husband the other day. So he, you know, I always think I'm like, he's my, he's my primary client, right? I'm always like, coaching him and helping him. 'Cause he's got a million ideas, and I just I love to see him, you know, bring his ideas to fruition. So we were talking about how, you know, so many people are going around in the world, like, you know, the teacup ride? It's like they're sitting in their teacup and they're like, Why do I keep bumping into all these other people? Like, these people keep bumping into me, like, that is so rude. Like, why are you hitting me all the time? And then you look and go, Oh, wait, there's this thing in front of me. Oh.

Melissa Mosher 42:54

It's a part of the whole actual other thing.

Adrienne MacIain 42:57

Okay, okay. Yeah, I'm actually the one driving. I just wasn't driving, right?

Melissa Mosher 43:03

Oh, I like that, yeah.

Adrienne MacIain 43:04

And then you're like, Oh, I'm sorry, everybody. Sorry, I bumped into y'all. I got my steering wheel now. Like, I'm good. But until you actually recognize that if you're not driving, you're still driving.

Melissa Mosher 43:19

Yeah. Yeah, the lack of involvement is a type of involvement.

Adrienne MacIain 43:25

Yes. You're just allowing yourself to be reactive and ping off of everything around you. And that's still driving.

Melissa Mosher 43:33

Yeah! Yeah, yeah, yeah. It's reactive driving and it's, you know, for lack of better, victim-based driving, but you're totally right. Because as you were saying it, you know, I'm all processing in my brain. No, I don't think of myself as a creator at all. Which is likely the roadblock that I've been pushing up against for 18 months. I'm not a creator, right? I'm not, and I'm not a trainer and I'm not an educator.

Adrienne MacIain 43:58

What are you?

Melissa Mosher 43:59

Right? If you're not that, then what are you? No, you really are that. You're, you know, an educator, enabler, bliss planned out, do whatever. But yeah, you're totally right, especially if you don't think of yourself as a creative, because I don't. I mean, I'm not creative. To me, it's like artistic words and pictures and things like that, or you know, dance and motion. I am clumsy, I don't write, I don't paint, I don't do that stuff. So that's actually some pretty good food for thought. I don't think of myself as a creator.

Adrienne MacIain 44:27

And that's why I use the word creator, or creation, rather than creative. Because when people hear creative, they automatically think about the arts. And that's great. You know, the arts are important. But at the same time, there's all kinds of creation happening that isn't specifically imaginative or artistic. But you're still creating. Everything you do is creation. If you made breakfast, you created that breakfast.

Melissa Mosher 44:54

Yeah, okay!

Adrienne MacIain 44:56

You have an idea. Right? You have an idea, and you decide, okay, I'm going to set this idea into motion. I'm going to schedule this into my life. I'm going to plan to make this a reality. That's creation. And it happens on the tiniest little scale of like, Hey, I have the idea that I'm going to get out of bed and put my clothes on. And then I do.

Melissa Mosher 45:19

Yeah! That that's super empowering because it gives non-artists permission to say you create stuff.

Adrienne MacIain 45:33

Which you do!

Melissa Mosher 45:33

And help to guide, I'm just 'cause I'm me and I'm selfish, help guide me into what does that mean to be a creator? What do you create? How do you do it? What's your process? Right? Because I'm thinking, like, creatives in terms of arts and like, you all have a creative process. Like writers, they got to shut their door and write an outline and build it out, like you have that. But if you don't feel like you're a creator, that you're an operator, right? I've like, I've got that, I'm like, I'm putting it on my little mental noodle, I'm gonna have to journal on that one.

Adrienne MacIain 46:08

Absolutely. Well, speaking of which, this is the perfect time to segue. I usually do a little exercise. I was like, example, no exercise. Usually do a little exercise at about this time. So let's do this. Okay. Yes, yes. So I'm gonna have you close your beautiful eyes. Yeah, sorry, sorry. It's temporary. Okay. So take a deep breath. All right. I am going to wave my magic wand, and once it is waved, all your greatest and deepest desires will come to pass. And I'm going to ask you to describe for me what you see, hear, and can taste touch and smell in this beautiful new reality. Okay? So, magic wand waved, everything is perfect. I want you to, in your mind, sort of wake up in your ideal reality, and tell me what you see.

Melissa Mosher 47:07

I have a full room VR gaming setup. The ideal, like, I can see this because I am rowing towards it dang near every day. I want the freedom to pursue my creative interests, whatever those are, I want to...

Adrienne MacIain 47:27

So hold on, hold on, let's pause right there. Whatever those are, right? So I want you to see something. You you are doing something in this space that is bringing you meaning. It's bringing you purpose, it's making you feel like you bring great value to the world and you're giving your gifts, your true gifts to the world and they are appreciated. What do you see yourself doing?

Melissa Mosher 47:52

Training guild masters.

Adrienne MacIain 47:53

Beautiful. So, I want you to see in front of you a Guild Master that you are working with. You can see them on a screen or in person, whatever you choose. But I want you to see that you're training this person. It's probably a woman, right? It's a woman.

Melissa Mosher 48:10

Oh, no, it's probably a dude, it's gamers. But maybe.

Adrienne MacIain 48:14

Let's say it's a woman, okay? And you see her just get it. Like you've just given her this beautiful golden bit of wisdom. And you see her eyes light up, and she gets it. And she turns to you and she just says, Thank you so much. That's exactly what I needed. What do you feel when that happens?

Melissa Mosher 48:38

The absolute best ever. Whether there's coin or not, but that's the, that right there, when someone has an epiphany moment, I get it. Thank you - that's hands down, bar none the best currency I can think of in my entire life.

Adrienne MacIain 48:59

So how are we going to scale that up? So you've got these, you know, one on one situations. But I want you to be able to do that to a whole bunch of people at the same time. So what is it that you're creating to make that happen in this space?

Melissa Mosher 49:17

I used to think it was going to be, like, a book, because that's what people do. However, I'm not a writer and I don't have any ambitions to be one. So...

Adrienne MacIain 49:30

But you are a talker.

Melissa Mosher 49:33

I am! I am a talker.

Adrienne MacIain 49:35

So what I see is I see you off-the-cuff speaking, improvising to a whole bunch of these people at the same time. Now, again, that could be virtually through an online course or a webinar. Does that feel right to you? Okay.

Melissa Mosher 49:59

Yeah, yeah!

Adrienne MacIain 50:01

So I want you to see yourself, you're sitting in your comfy chair, you know, you got the lights on you, and you got your little camera here. But you can see all these people listening to you, some are taking notes, some are looking up. And you're just, you're giving them gold, and you can see it.

Melissa Mosher 50:22

That's the best feeling in terms of personal selfishness, having roadblocks removed is the best feeling for me. And so I feel like if I can help remove some big roadblocks for others, they'll go forward faster, better, stronger.

Adrienne MacIain 50:42

Yeah. So you're like, you're just firing on all cylinders here, this is really working. And I want you to look back into your memory as you're sitting here in this beautiful space that you've created, by the way, look around the space and just tell me what you see a little bit. You're in the perfect space for this work. What does it look like?

Melissa Mosher 51:05

A full new office and gaming rig. Like all that, like the tech studio that I want. That actual kind of physical space with the physical devices that will help me weave the digital experience I want to share.

Adrienne MacIain 51:21

Yeah, absolutely. So you've got the cutting-edge latest technology. What do you...

Melissa Mosher 51:27

You know that 65 inch carbon fiber Rab dual motor LED light gaming desk? I got one of those.

Adrienne MacIain 51:34

One of those? Baby! Absolutely. What does it feel like? Is it smooth?

Melissa Mosher 51:40

Mm-hmm. It feels professional. It feels like, not IKEA, no knocking. It feels like what I do on this surface is serious. I know that might sound goofy, but like, this matters. This isn't an end table that I'm pulling in front of a milk crate and trying to bootstrap some stuff down.

Adrienne MacIain 52:05

It feels substantial. It's got some weight to it. Yeah. Yeah. What color is it?

Melissa Mosher 52:12


Adrienne MacIain 52:13

Shiny, shiny black. Yeah. Nice. Okay, so now I want you to look into your memory, and think about the roadblocks that you needed to clear away, the obstacles that you needed to clear to get to where you are right now. What did you need to do to make this possible?

Melissa Mosher 52:37

Apparently make 4.7 million mistakes.

Adrienne MacIain 52:40

Of course.

Melissa Mosher 52:41

I had to make a lot of mistakes. Being grounded in your interest and pursuit. That it is okay to want something outside of duty. Not like poopy, but, like, your sense of duty. Like the idea that it is okay to want to do things that other folks don't. Right? I'm not married, no kids.

Adrienne MacIain 53:11

That's okay. It's okay to play.

Melissa Mosher 53:14

Yeah, it's okay to play. Okay.

Adrienne MacIain 53:16

Absolutely. So you had to, you had to play a lot to get here it seems like.

Melissa Mosher 53:22

Yeah, that's actually pretty good statement. I did play a lot.

Adrienne MacIain 53:28

So, I want you to think about, you can open your eyes now if you'd like, to think about how you can incorporate more play into your life now. How you can actually make play time important time for yourself, and schedule it in, and respect it as part of your process.

Melissa Mosher 53:57

That's bone-chilling in a really good way.

Adrienne MacIain 54:01

Uh huh. Scary, huh?

Melissa Mosher 54:03

It's super is, yeah. Yeah. I mean, just me personally, I was like, (just a sec, my eyes are watering), I think yeah, because I don't play. Meaning I enjoy what I do, and I have a fun personality. I'm sitting here reflecting, like, I don't play. I binge watch RuPaul once a month or, you know what I mean? Like, I'll take a day and I'll actually just go binge on Ru, but that's about it really. Interesting.

Adrienne MacIain 54:37

Interesting, isn't it?

Melissa Mosher 54:39

Interesting. The fun person, back to that, there's one of those foundational shifts. Oh, I'm a people person. No. Oh, you're fun. Yeah, but I don't have fun.

Adrienne MacIain 54:47

But I don't play.

Melissa Mosher 54:49

Yeah. I mean, I have this guy, but he only goes out once a month, pretty much.

Adrienne MacIain 54:54


Melissa Mosher 54:55

Oh, interesting. See, I'm gonna expand, Oh, you gotta self-actualize and find your confidence and do all this other stuff. But you nailed it, because it's, you know, specific to the person. Yeah, I don't play. And honestly, I haven't played since the avalanche.

Adrienne MacIain 55:11

Yeah. Do you want to tell that?

Melissa Mosher 55:15

Well, I was gonna saym so 2013 I got buried in an avalanche, in an ice-fall avalanche. We were hiking a frozen waterfall and had the upper shear come down. And I got buried in about on a few 100 pounds of ice. So the reason why it was scary, I mean, there's a lot of reasons why it was scary. Yeah, I didn't wet my pants, you would have thought you'd wet your pants in avalanche, but i didn't. I did have a Wile E. Coyote moment. If I could paint I can tell you what an oncoming frozen waterfall looks like. Had a Wile E. Coyote moment. But, got it, you know, tried to... So, long story short, but we're coming across this where the river actually would flow if it wasn't frozen. So, I call it the sea of ice penises because it looks like 'cause it's all frozen the way it was. So we're, like, crawling all across these ice penises. And there's a cave up top. And I'm with a friend of mine that's a range, and, you know, with another friend. Like we're fairly experienced hikers, I mean, we're not mountaineering. But, so we're like, okay, we've got gear, temperature, we're doing all this stuff. The two dudes got into the cave a little bit quicker than I did, because they're just taller, longer legs or whatever. And I stopped to take a picture of this beautiful waterfall. And they're videotaping me. And my then spouse was like, You better get moving. And I said, Yeah, I'm just gonna take a picture. Hear this massive, I know what a waterfall splitting in half and all of that falling down. So, heard the crack, had moments of rumble. Right? Time dilation, where we can just go woo-uhh, right? I see the crack. I see all of this stuff coming down. I look over at the cave. The guys are like, Run! Right? So I'm like, right, okay, zoom! You know, it is not run, it's climbing at scale around you. And I closed about half the distance and I fallen or I done something, and so I got back up. And I looked at the thing come and I looked at them and I thought Game Over. They said it was like Wile E. Coyote, like I was missing a sign, like Game Over. And then I was immediately confused, well, what do you mean Game Over? Right? And so by this time, I can't hear anything. So they're going like this, Oh, right, get down, get down! So I jump, crawl into a ball, by the way, the place where I fall into a ball, the only place I would have survived it. The only. Had I been anywhere else, not a chance. So I crawl into a ball, I get everything but one of my legs out. And then it was just like boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, just ice, 'cause it was a frozen waterfalls. So these are all big chunks of ice from 10 to 80 pounds or whatever. So I hear it, right? And I was like, Oh, I better turn my head, you know, and I'm trying to hold back, I didn't have, you hold your neck like in tornado warnings, right? Like, I'm trying to do all that. So it lasts for just a moment, right? And then my friends were really great. The Ranger, he bird-dogged me, which is what you're supposed to do. Right? Somebody is, that's happening, don't move where they were, where they were, where they were and then my spouse is yelling or whatever, at the time. And so within moments, they had me unburied and I could hear what was going on. Now, my then spouse is six foot four, so I'm pretty sure he just grabbed me by the back of the, and went Okay, and flung me up into the cave, however I had got there. But then we had video after that. I don't remember the video. But, this is so me, they're apparently asking me questions, and I looked very pointed at them and said, It sounds like you think an avalanche would sound like. What a ridiculous question. Right? And so apparently, when I go into PTSD mode, I'm just very, like, pragmatic about things. So in that, I feel like, and the reason why I bring that up's because I think that's when I stopped playing. I think that and when I did that, that had implications that fed into my career, into my relationship, into the things. I stopped playing. Oh, my God, I almost died. I mean, not actively thinking, but Oh my God, I almost died, every day has to be...

Adrienne MacIain 59:35

Yeah, yeah.

Melissa Mosher 59:38

Yeah. So I'm like, I'm all sitting here thinking, Oh, yeah, I need to recover from trauma. No, girlfriend, you need to figure out how to have fun again. You need to be able to, like, exhale. Like, just that exercise of walking through there, I would not have expected the guild gaming stuff to come out because that's been dormant for a minute.

Adrienne MacIain 59:59

And yet that was the first thing you saw.

Melissa Mosher 1:00:03

That's clever. I see what you did there.

You see what I did there?

I see what you did there. Isn't that often that I get gotted. I got gotted. No, I'm kidding. But really though, like, you're in terms of just sheer joy, like getting 100 dudes together that I don't pay in order to be supremely top performers, you know, back to six server first and all this stuff. Like, everything I learned about organizational development, I learned in video games.

Adrienne MacIain 1:00:29

Mm-hmm. And what's video game for. What's that for?

Melissa Mosher 1:00:34

Video game fun. Money. Fun. Fun and money. Money and fun.

Adrienne MacIain 1:00:37


Melissa Mosher 1:00:39

Yeah. It super is. Just... how often I get a big thing to go.

Adrienne MacIain 1:00:50