Hey, dear listeners, today's guests are filmmakers, podcasters and best friends, Brie Larson and Jesse A.. You might know Bree from her Oscar winning performance in Room Cong's Gull Island or as Carol Danvers, a.k.a. Captain Marvel. You know, Jesse from Mythic Quest, better call Saul life of the party Veep and a lot more. Brian Jesse just launched their own podcast, Learning Lots, and I subscribed immediately after talking with them. Later in the episode, I'm joined for the first time by best selling author Rachel Hollas.
Rachel has lived through and learned a lot this past year and has some great insights to share on the topic of dating during and after a pandemic. Thank you all so much for your kind comments and telling your friends about our show. It makes me really happy to watch the unqualified community grow. If you have a question or a story to tell us, please go to unqualified dotcom and look for the link. OK, here are Aubrey and Jesse.
Ladies and gentlemen, you are listening to Unqualified with your host unfairest. Hi. Hello. I love it that you guys are doing this with me. Thank you so much. Thank you. As you can see, I'm addicted to knitting. I love that. But listen, I want to be at the place in our friendship with the two of you guys because I really love you where you could say, OK, it really looks like you're not paying attention to what I'm saying.
OK, I'll be sure to let you know I've been too nervous to do it in front of anybody else because it clearly is kind of rude. I like it.
Yeah, I knit when I'm like listening to podcast, so it makes sense. You would knit while you were doing a podcast. Of course you met and I bet you're really good.
I'm OK. It's meditative when it's like a scarf. But when you're actually trying to make like I made a cardigan. You did. Yeah. That was a journey. Yeah. I'm not there.
Yeah. A lot of counting recounting. Yeah. Yeah.
I don't know if I'll ever be that kind of knitter.
Is that the cardigan that I gave you for Christmas. Correct. It was the kit you gave me. Oh nice. Good gift. I gave her a bunch of kids. I gave her like an easy a medium and a hard. Yeah I haven't gotten to the hard yet. Oh the cardigan isn't the hard.
No it's not. What's the hard. What's the hard.
Socks, socks. Socks. Of course I thought socks were easy. You would think, you'd think socks would be easier than a cardigan but no those are like the kinds of socks though.
If you hand knit socks you're going to fucking fall. Don't you think you're going to slip so hard you can't make it tight enough knit. At least I can't.
No, no. And they're not going to be comfy. I just feel like I'd never wear them.
It would just completely reframe my understanding of socks, like too much that I don't think I could exist in the world any longer.
So you guys have a podcast. Tell me about your journey so far. I was thinking about it this morning.
And one of the things that's been gnawing at me is that I have the privilege to have certain conversations and having a platform to share those conversations so people can get the knowledge that I get.
It's been a true blessing, whether it's in acting and entertainment things or it's with activism. Like I have had the ability to have incredible conversations with super interesting people.
And it was like, well, what would it be like if that information could be evenly distributed and available to people?
And then also there's a lot of fear for me in being myself, being like not a character, but and being free. And what does that look like and what does that mean? And so, of course, within that, it's like, well, the person who makes me feel the safest, the person that I feel the most myself with is my best friend. So this makes sense.
Anything you want to say, Jesse? I second everything Bruce said, and it's been really fun and also so challenging not to overthink everything I say afterwards. Do you still struggle with that, like after you recorded podcast for days thinking about what was the stupidest thing I said or what I struggle with is sometimes I don't feel sharp enough.
And then afterwards, almost always, I'll kick myself that I didn't pull a thread that seemed really interesting. Instead, I went on my own stupid thing about a story that probably people have heard before. But Bri, what you were saying has also been a really important side effect for me in terms of having my own voice. This is something that I can control. It's nice to have this longer format and I've made a lot of new friends, including you guys.
Although, Jessie, I'm worried I haven't, like, warmed you up. Do you like me OK?
Oh, I'm so excited to be here and to get to meet you.
You have the most beautiful smile, Jesse. Thank you. That's so nice.
You know, she's stunning. Look at the hair, the waterfall hair.
Oh, no, thanks, y'all. Hey, three. I was just watching your YouTube video where you talk about auditioning. That was the best layout of auditioning experience that I've heard. Oh, really?
Was that like yours, too? Oh, yeah. Oh, good. And the idea that it is a different skill and how fucking hard it is, the ladders, the hoops, the embarrassment, your emotional state, even if it's a job you don't want, you're still invested. Yeah.
And I love how you laid it out. It was really healing for me. Oh good. I loved when you describe auditioning for a horror movie and I remember like going to auditions and you just hear the girls like Violet in and you just hear like the bloodcurdling scream and you're like, fuck, I thought my scream was good. Oh, that's on it. Pretty realistic.
Yeah. You know, and the other thing too is the rejection becomes so personal and it goes into whatever it is is your deepest wound.
I think you have to like sort for yourself. There's something like for me, I know what it is like. There's something stewing in me that allowed me to just keep pushing forward. And then at the same time, when I'd get the know it's easier. Sometimes when the know is clear, it's like, no, you know, you didn't have the right eye color and you're playing a young version of that, that it doesn't work.
But when it's like, no, not the right. It then you're like, well, why, obviously something wrong with me, because I'm not the right fit. So how do I become the right fit? And it's so easy for an individual. For me, it was like my formative years in my whole life, especially like a teen to imagine like what does that mean to be not the right fit and to fight it.
I went in all these different directions of trying to be all these different things only to land on like, you know, it's not any of those things, especially in my 20s.
I always when I wasn't the right fit, when that was my feedback, I made the assumption that I wasn't hot enough. Oh, yeah, for sure. Me too. Yeah. It's kind of like, well, what other conclusion? I don't know. It's tough 100 percent.
It's like I'm not pretty enough period. Got it. That's why I'm not the right fit. Yeah. I think for people out there who are interested in acting, it's a crucial and essential process because it also kind of changed you a little bit for the hardship of being on a set and how it can be very un nurturing.
Yeah. Yes. And no one's coddling you until later, hopefully.
But yeah, it's a grind. I auditioned for something in December and it was my first audition since Mom. So it had been like seven years since I had auditioned for something. So I clearly didn't get it because I would know something. But I can't bring myself to ask my agents for feedback. And I'm kind of debating if that's a good approach for me, because clearly I still have a question like, hey, was I not hot enough?
But do I need to know the answer?
Am I at a place in my career where I can submit and say goodbye? I would like to. What do you guys think?
I love feedback. I'm a big fan of feedback and I feel like I read a room pretty well. I usually know on the way out if I it'll be a callback if I got the job, if I'm not right for it. So I usually call my manager on my walk to my car and give him my read of what happened and then he calls before I get home.
But this was a tape I sent in. Yeah, I thought I did really well. But to me it sounds like you care. And I don't think that there's anything wrong with caring, like our job is like so emotive.
Of course we care it just for you to decide why you care. Do you care because you're like, I really love this story. I really love this character.
Or is it like I really want them to like me?
I think for me it's the exploration at this point of curiosity. When I used to audition regularly, I would throw my scripts away like I needed to distance myself from the project. But it's like I know what it's going to be. It's going to be you weren't the right fit. You did a good job, but you weren't the right fit. That's what they're going to tell me.
Even if I did a shitty job, you know, have you ever directed or been like on the other side where you've watched people audition? Yes.
In fact, when I first auditioned for Scary Movie, that was my first audition in Los Angeles. So, yeah, it was crazy. I was dizzy with, like, what the fuck is happening? I had never been to Los Angeles. Like, I did not know what was going on. I sent in a tape from Washington, but the casting director had me watch other people audition. That's cool. I knew enough at that time to realize that it felt slightly unethical.
Like you're in something private. Yeah.
And because these actresses would come in, they would see me and I was just in the waiting room and suddenly they're performing for the casting director and me anyway. She championed me. But what are your thoughts on seeing the other side? Bree, I have never directed, but I know that you are directing and producing.
So I taught a kids acting class like really briefly when I was broke and couldn't afford acting lessons. And that was the way that I was able to get acting lessons.
But it wasn't until I directed a film that I was able to actually be in the process of sitting in the room reading with everybody that came in and then making the decision of who was going to be the right person. And there wasn't anybody who came in that was like, oh, they were bad. Everybody had brought something. But when you're creating it, it's like you're building this world that's in your head. And there is like a bit of a chemistry or an alchemy that goes into how all these different people from different walks of life come together to build a world.
And it really opened my eyes of like I wanted to individually tell each person who came in, like, I know it's hard to understand, but like, there is nothing wrong with you. You didn't do anything wrong. It's just in crafting this thing. It just fits this way. And it felt so impersonal in a way.
And I wish that I had had the opportunity to know that sooner because I think I would have understood the not the right fit thing in a totally humane concept. Right. Rather than like spiraling out of how do I become it? It's like you don't change anything to become it. It just fits at some point. And it's hard because that means trusting an unknown and basically in chaos, which sucks. You want that. But it's the truth.
Do you have experiences where you go in for one thing and then they call you back for a different project or a different part within that project? Because that's like my entire career, but every job I've ever. Otten is you're not the right fit, but we think you might be the right fit for this thing, like I was heartbroken over one job and this was at the very beginning of my career. Heartbroken over one job. You're not the right fit.
We want to bring you in for another part. Then I'm like, oh, I could still be in this show. That would be so great. You're not the right fit. But you know what? There's this character on Veep which has been picked up and is a show and people are already watching it. You might be great for. And the same thing happened on the show I'm on right now. I auditioned for every female character and I wasn't the right fit.
And then Jenny McCarthy was like, just write a character that fits her.
Just figure out a way to use her because people want to find a place for you. What a cool compliment there. Like this person. We want to watch her. Like, let's figure this out. I think that's incredible.
Yeah. I also just think it's determination. I've gone on so many auditions. My dad's an actor, so I used to go with him all the time and he got rejected on everything. I watched him get rejected at least six hundred times in my childhood. And so when I started working, I was like, OK, I'm going to have to audition like let's say two hundred times. If I can do two hundred auditions and I still don't get anything, maybe I should think about this, but I shouldn't even consider quitting until I've actually auditioned for like four years.
And then over the course of those four years, I got work.
Sometimes I talk to actors who have maybe not as much love for acting or have sort of fallen into it like Scary Movie was my first audition, but I had done a ton of shitty theater in Seattle. I have done local commercials and even with getting Scary Movie, I was very pragmatic. I think that's healthy and I feel like you guys had similar expectation levels because we've been doing it for so long, or maybe because our drive to act comes from a slightly different place.
I don't know. Well, there's just lots of ways to get into it. I've become super into sports during the pandemic and I found a lot of parallels with that. Like there's some people who are born really gifted at a certain aspect of a certain sport. And you can fall into it because it's just natural. And for whatever reason, it's there and it can not necessarily be the thing. That's your greatest passion, which is the thing that you're good at.
And I'm sure those actors like that, too.
And then there's other ones that weren't always the top pick or the best one, but just had the determination and the feeling in their gut to fight for it. And I feel like I fall more into that category where I just didn't give up. I just would not take no as the final word.
And so, yeah, of course, with any craft, I think there's different ways of getting into it. And I also think there's different times in our lives where it can feel really stressful and burdensome. And then other times where it's like, oh my gosh, that's the greatest thing in the entire world, completely free.
Can we talk about when we first met? Yeah, let's talk about it. Jesse, do you know this? No. Well, I was married or engaged to my first husband and he was on a show called Racing Dad, which was on the WB with Bob Saget. Embry was a regular. You were such a star and you were so like vivacious and lovely and mature.
I was ten. Just so the listeners know what era we're talking about, I think I turned eleven on set.
Yeah. And I feel like our age difference has shortened. Yeah, that does make sense though, because when you're younger, it's like that difference is huge.
I mean, it's a completely different stage of life for us now. It's like it all evens out in the end.
I watched Phoebe Bridgers grow up. She went to the same elementary school that my siblings went to and she would play guitar every Friday to the whole school. There was like a music thing, and if my school wasn't in session, my mom would bring me with her. So I watched this little girl perform and then I saw her at a party before covid hit. And I was like, How old are you? Are you old enough to be at this party?
And I felt so old suddenly.
I mean, she's also so talented and has, like, blossomed into this incredible career. And I feel like I diminish it in a way because I'm like, but you're still mine. Can you just be stuck at nine? And if you're then how does that say about me? And I feel like I was just like projecting all these insecurities onto her at this party. And she was lovely and so sweet and kind. But I was just like, there's no way that you could be an adult now.
It's like insulting to me.
Yeah. Oh, my God.
And then ultimately finding out we're not that far apart in age. But it felt like forever when I was 14 and she was nine.
Yeah. OK, I want you guys to answer this individually. At what age do you think you first fell in love? If you have experienced that? That's a really cool question.
So I think the first time that I remember being in love and like the pain of it and sobbing over it, I was maybe around raising daytimes or maybe earlier like nine or ten.
And I was obsessed with Oaktown. And I went to an old town concert and I didn't know what it was. But I just remember being in the back of the car, my mom driving me home and I couldn't stop crying.
And she was like, what is wrong? What is wrong? And I was like, I just love you.
And I didn't know where to place it. I didn't. What one was supposed to do with it, obviously nothing, but I remember that so clearly, like I remember the feeling of like this is here, I don't want it, but it's happening. And now I have to deal with it and I'm embarrassed to give a name to it.
I love that. Jesse, my instinct was so similar.
It was Tommy Pickles. I was I completely in love with a cartoon, like completely in love with the cartoon. And I was so young. We're talking about like five or six. I was boy crazy for this cartoon. And I remember finding out that cartoons aren't real people and being, like, inconsolably depressed for a long time. Yeah. Knowing I'd never get to go on a date with this blue shirt diaper boy.
Oh, Jesse in the world's been kind of devastating ever since. Yeah, yeah. That's tough.
But yeah, I feel like I've been in relationships where it's unhealthy and I think it's love, but it's just me trying to believe that it's something it's not. I think I'm in love right now and it's like the first really healthy love. It feels good.
That's great. Can you talk a little bit about that? Yeah. I mean, give it to us. Just tell us about it. It's great.
I'm engaged to be married to a really sweet guy who's really kind and goes to therapy.
I love. It's great. But Jesse, that's great.
Congratulations. Where are you on wedding planning?
We had planned pretty much a full wedding and then it got scrapped and then covid happened. And now it's just an idea of something we'll do in the future. I want to have a dance party.
Oh, I love that. So how did you guys meet? We met on the set of Life of the Party, which is of Melissa McCarthy movie. I was very single minded and being a good professional working actor who does not have any distractions or does not mess around. And so I got there. All the women in the cast were in serious relationships and they were like vultures trying to figure out someone who they could live vicariously through. And they were all like, who's your crush?
Who do you love here?
Like, who are you going to go on a date with? And I was like, No. One, I'm cold and I'm broken. And I'm not interested in love. I'm interested in my career. And there's no world in which the two can meet.
And then over the course of the first few months of making that movie, everyone was like auditioning guys to be my boyfriend. And I was like, really not a part of it. I didn't want to talk about having crushes. I was like kind of in a dark hole. And all I wanted to do was be goofy at work. I remember Melissa was like, What about Max? Do you like Max?
And I was like, I am not interested. He is garbage. And she was like, it's kind of weird because the two of you stare at each other all day long and when you're not looking at him, he's looking at you. And then when he's not looking at you, you're looking at him just like I just watch you guys do this weird tennis game all day long. And then eventually he came over to me and he gave me his phone number on a piece of paper and it just didn't even register to me.
I went home. I, like, lost a piece of paper and didn't think anything of it. The next Monday, he was like, what happened? You never called me.
And I was like, Yeah, I was never going to call you. And then a friend of mine came into town. He's a goofball. And he found the piece of paper. It was behind the couch, which also was like, why was Logan behind my couch? And he called Max and said he was someone from Southwest and that he wanted to offer him a free flight. And Max is like very pragmatic kind of guy. And he thought his information was being fished.
And so he started talking a bit about how it go and how it's reporting him.
The thing it really, really seriously. He was on speaker phone. I took a video of the two of them talking and then send it to Max, which was so confusing for him. And then I kind of felt bad that my friend Logan had pranked him. So we all hung out that day. And I remember Logan that night being like, you should flirt with Max more. And I was like, I'm at work. Sure. And then it just kind of kept happening.
But I was really cold and shut off and I kept kind of thinking, well, when I'm wrapped, maybe I'll talk to Max and we could go out on a date, but not until then, because I'm goofy and I want to be able to feel free at work. And I don't want to be making, like, ugly faces and silly jokes and stuff and then, like, looking in the corner and wondering if that guy thinks it's funny. I just didn't want to make him a part of my creative process and I'm kind of boy crazy.
So if I had a crush on him, it would be difficult to separate. But I definitely thought I just had him on the back burner and I could retrieve him whenever I felt like it. And then one night I was at a sushi restaurant with my friend and Max came in with a girl or a woman. And I immediately freaked out like, this is what jealousy feels like. I like waved the waiter over and I asked if he could send a glass of milk over to their table.
And they were like, you don't have milk. It's a sushi restaurant. That's OK. Can you just put together, like, the grossest non-alcoholic cocktail, like just get the grenadine and all the weird fruit bits and just put it all into a glass and don't put any alcohol in there. Just make like a gross drink, which I still can't fully back up my reasoning behind. Yeah. Interesting choice. Yeah. I don't know why I did that.
I was just trying to sabotage them I think so they brought over this very weird drink and the waiter was like it was sent to you by that table over there.
And Molly and I wrapped our napkins around our heads. Like babushkas, and we like wave to them and Max has said that, like, that was the moment when he wished he was at the other table because he was like, all these girls are so fun and just so weird. Why did you send me this drink?
And then later on, I walked over to the table as we were leaving and I was like, oh, you guys should order these things. Or they was delicious and have fun. And I figured this girl was someone who was working on the movie that was in a department that I don't usually come into contact with. So I was like, do you work in accounting? And she was like, no, but it. And I was like, oh, she was like, I'm from New York.
I just flew in and I was like, cool. And then by the time I got to the car, I was like shaking in full blown rage.
And I was like flew in from New York. She came from New York.
I was just very possessive of this person. I had never gone on a date with before. And the next day at work, he was like, wasn't that so cool?
We ran into each other and I was like, Yeah, did you like the meal? And he was like, Yeah, it was great. And I said, And how about that imported pussy? Like his face flushed with red. He was shocked. He did not expect me to say that he walked away. And I just kind of was like, I don't know where that came from. I mean, she look shocked. This is not normal.
Me, I'm shocked. I did not know any of this.
Those are you being like I'm in a healthy relationship. We both started going to therapy eventually. Yeah. But yeah, the other ridiculous part of the story was that I have really bad allergies and we were shooting the scene where I swear they just brought in bags of dust to decorate the set. I was like getting sick and kind of like disoriented almost. And I remember they were like, we're just going to change the lens. And once again, my friend Molly was like, oh, hang out with you.
How does it feel if I have a stomachache and just feel really nauseous and my friend over and she's like, you feel nauseous, do you want a ginger ale? And I was like, don't you have a lens to change, sir, that I definitely have a crush on and don't want to talk to me? It was like I already did it and ran away. And he came back with like an insulated coffee cup with ice, ginger ale and a straw.
And I was like, this is the most thoughtful gift anyone has ever given me. And then for the rest of the production, everyone called them ginger ale boy. And when I wrapped, we went on a date and we've been together ever since.
Your self-control is impressive, but it is funny how that was like the adult decision. But then, like, your behavior was like really funny, was like a mean middle schooler. I know.
Bri, are you in a relationship? I'm in one. Are you happy? I am. You seem happy. You have like the most beautiful glow about it. Thank you. Are you guys quarantining together?
I'm good, yeah. I'm super happy in the concept of love is something I've been thinking about a lot because I think our understanding of it is only as much as we've experienced it in the way we experienced it. Perhaps more younger is quite different. I would imagine.
Then when we're older, at least that's been my experience of it being the sort of like opening of how to define it or what it looks like or how it feels.
And I guess the way that I frame it is like, does it support you as being you? And then in the moments where it feels like it's infringing upon you, which I think is quite normal, especially if you're coexisting with someone 24/7 in a pandemic, then can you talk through that in a way that's comfortable for both? Because both want to support the individual and supporting the individual then creates the whole. So that's been as of late, my understanding of what love is.
It's not so much that it's like me crying in the back of the car and nine years old, even though that's what I thought it was now thirty one years old, it feels and looks different.
I think such an important part of love is being able to grow together, you know, being able to take life's different bumps differently, but doing it together.
When I met my fiancee Michael, he would talk a lot about how life is short. And it came at a point in my life when I so needed to be reminded of that living in this industry in Los Angeles and what we do, it feels like I have had my foot on the gas in an exhausting way, like trying to hustle, like when's the next thing, you know, mortgage, whatever, the insecurity, the financial instability, I should say, of our job.
And the comparison looks like, oh, God, someone is doing that. They're my age or whatever. It felt so good to be constantly reminded of that, of you really to use the term present, like, forced me into that. And it feels so good. It's kind of the first time in my life that I can remember feeling like God. Yeah. I want to live in a cabin in the woods. That's what I want to do.
We would probably all three consider ourselves romantics. Do you think?
I think I am a romantic at heart, but I've acted like I haven't been for a really long time. Like, what do you mean?
I feel like there's a lot of aspects that I've wrestled with when it comes to, like, the idea of being like an independent woman and what that shape takes, like what that looks like.
And it turned into a lot of like rejecting like rejecting things like I don't need that. I don't want that. I open my own doors or whatever. And it took me a long time and a lot of therapy.
To realize that I was acting in response of something and I just want to be like I don't want to be for or against in relation to anything, it's just like what I like and what I want and what feels good.
It took me about 30 years. I was like, I don't have to fit in any sort of mold. It's not saying any large thing about myself.
If I want flowers, you know, I don't have to be like, oh God, how dare you like and just like that.
And that can be intermixed with all these other things of ways that I like doing things myself.
That is the healthiest thing I think I've ever heard. I mean, I don't know if I'm there yet.
44 is a process.
I'm not saying I've arrived. I don't think there's any, like, true rival because that stuff changes constantly. Like what it is that living in you, what you want is constantly shifting. But I think being in the conversation of it rather than just being like, oh, I definitely don't want to be like that, or I always want to be like, this is kind of dangerous. Yeah, I think any kind of categorization is tricky. Do you guys have a bad breakup story?
Oh, I've had maybe five serious relationships. I include college. The majority of those relationships I ended, but it was only after my hand was forced, like things have been so miserable for a long time and I couldn't quite figure out why and kind of trying to repair it and then eventually being like, what are we supposed to do here? I breaking up with you like this is clearly what you desire, because I don't know other people who would want to live in this kind of misery.
Like, I guess I tried really hard to make bad things work. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
But I think for me and reflecting on that, I feel like I just didn't have any examples of like knowing when it's done, like the only reference points I had when I thought about like what a breakup was, was like some sort of like wacky comedy where like the girl walks in and the guy's like, well, and he's like in bed with another woman and she's like, oh my God, pick up your things and go.
And it was like, well, that never happened. So I guess it's just you try, you know, unless you have really close people to you that are willing to share those vulnerabilities.
I feel really lucky that I have a lot of friends that are older, that have been in relationships, married for twenty five years, that are really open about talking about like the cycles of the relationship and all that.
That's super helpful if you can get that. A lot of people don't have that. So we're like floundering to know.
And it's like, what are you supposed to do?
We get it from movies or like I guess like twenty one reasons you should break up with someone based upon tweets put together by BuzzFeed, like, how are we supposed to know? And that's when, like, love is such an interesting concept because it's like you can still love someone and it's time to go. But that's like and hindsight is another thing. But in the moment it's like, how do you grapple with that?
And I think it's a very beautiful thing to have old love in your heart and also go this is at the expense of myself.
And that cannot be. Yeah, I love that this episode of Unqualified is brought to you in part by tushy.
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You guys, what was the best advice you've ever been given, just so you got anything? Yeah, I think you told me to take a nap at lunch, lunch nap, which is really, really helpful advice.
That is actually really good. Practical advice. Yeah.
Lunch nap. Yeah. And that advice was given to me by this famous DPE, Michael Chapman, absolute legend. And I had asked him I was like 14 or something. I was like, could you give me any advice? He was like, take a nap at lunch.
It's really clutch. It's important. There's something that I've been thinking about a lot.
It's hard to say what's the best advice I've ever been given. But recently the advice I'm holding is when I think I know I miss so much. And I think that that works for everything. Like I think that works. If there's a time when you have some sort of stance, be it like a human rights or political stance or you're in an argument in your relationship or something that's going on at work, like watching the mind believe and feel self-righteous and with that not get closer or not try to understand, just be like, well, I know I'm humbled by that constantly.
And I think it's so human in particular in an argument, no matter what kind of argument that is.
Deville's so. Sure.
And then maybe when you've calmed down, you're like, oh, how dare I like how could I have thought that I knew the entire picture? Like, I cannot.
I have another piece of advice. This is more acting advice, but I feel like it applies to a lot of my life, which is an acting teacher said, if you're feeling really, really nervous and that's all you're thinking about, just say you're nervous because the second you say it, you cut some of its power. So like even before an audition, if I'm in the room and I notice, like, my hand is shaking or something because it really matters to me, I just go, oh, God, I'm so nervous, OK?
And then immediately I feel better. And I don't really judge myself for feeling nervous. I think everyone feels nervous.
Does that same idea apply? Because I was thinking about, if I confess, like things that are pretty embarrassing to me, if that will relieve me or if telling my friends or family or something, if they'll be like, oh god, yeah. Like confirm like, yes, you should still be very embarrassed of that. I think embarrassment is a really tough emotion to grapple with.
The same thing with jealousy and embarrassment is so interlocked with shame, shame, embarrassment is knowing that something you did was bad. And then shame is thinking that deep down you are bad. And I feel like after enough things happened, my embarrassment translates to shame really quick.
Yeah, I've been really interested in the concept of shame because obviously I have it and I think in some ways we're all kind of working from that place of like trying to get away from it or try and get close to it or try and make sense of it.
And so I've been working on this project, which is required me to talk to a lot of different people about the things that like is their deepest shame. And so far, not one time has someone said something. And I've been like, oh, yeah, you should feel shameful about that.
Not once spoken to a lot of people and every single person, I'm like, oh, my gosh, you're holding that like that's weighing you down.
Relieve yourself of that. So I'll just offer that up that I think we feel more isolated than we actually are in the freedom and being to, like, relieve ourselves of those.
Shame's kind of like what we're talking about the beginning of the conversation to not be living in reaction to something, but just to be as the self.
I think that's an incredible place to be from and to not be living in fear.
I love that. I wanted to ask you about nominations and awards and the time in between. I think it's an amazing thing to talk about because it's a pedestal and how do we talk about that? And also not, like, completely dissed the fact that within our industry it is an honor still. It still means something and it changes things and it's a gateway for things.
Yeah, like my job to make things. It was a lot easier once I got those things. So it's worth acknowledging that, like, the industry nods to that. And I remember the morning after the Oscars, I felt really weird. I just felt confused. How?
Well, first of all, I woke up in Vietnam, which was very confusing in a place I didn't know where I was like I got on planes and things, but I basically won and I like partied all night and then did like a talk show that morning, having not slept and then went from there to the airport and then had like three flights to go to Vietnam and that it was night through a lot of it. And so I was then driven hours into like a very rural part of Vietnam to continue shooting a film that I was doing.
And so I woke up. I had no cell service, no Wi-Fi, nothing. And like a place that I legitimately didn't know where I was and was like thrust into this action movie where they were like covering me. And it was very good.
It was like it was that fun. It's over.
So I just remember, like, it took a little bit for me to even have cell service to be able to contact anybody in my cell service was like an old phone, like one of those little Nokia phone. So I didn't have like a smartphone to, like, look at Twitter, like connect to any sort of reality.
And so I was like, did that even happen? Did that actually happen?
I was at work where people were like, here are your lines and the like. Congratulations, but also like we have stuff to do today.
And so I was like, did that happen like or was that a dream? Or like what just happened?
But anyway, when I finally was able to get cell service, I talked to Jennifer Lawrence about it and I said, you know, I feel sort of down I feel sort of confused, like it feels like heavy, like now on this person has this thing.
And she was like, oh, yeah, just think of it like getting your PhD. You can still screw up, you can still make a bad movie, still be a bad actor.
It doesn't mean you're immune to anything. It's just like this thing happened. And so that helped me immensely to frame it of like, OK, so it's both. It's like, yes, it's an honor. It's this incredible thing. It's the highest compliment I can receive. And at the same time, like, I'm still going to try and do the best work ever and hope that that's not the best work I've ever done.
You know, there's more for me to come.
But to answer your question about, like the two month gap, I was on that job and I'm so grateful I was on my job because I was like in the jungle all day with no cell service a lot of the time and running and in the mud. And so it did naturally give me the distance that I think I really needed. Like, I think I would have felt pretty overwhelmed if I didn't have, like, a task and I was in the earth, you know, in nature all day doing my job wasn't like I was like at home, like waiting, trying to make sense of it.
Right. Like making small talk with like your friends from back home. And they're like, are you nervous? Yeah, that would be tough.
Yeah. OK, do you believe in ghosts or aliens? I actually don't know.
Jesse, are you a ghost alien person? I don't feel like we've ever talked about this. I feel like I really project a no out into the world. But like late at night, the answer's definitely yes. I just saw a meme yesterday that made me laugh so hard. That was like we need to normalize twins, ghosts and juicy couture sweatpants and abolish the eighteen hundreds Victorian girl ghost. But I genuinely imagine like a little girl outside of my house from centuries ago, like, no, just begging to come in.
I think my biggest fear and like if I've smoked enough weed and I'm looking at a window like walking past a window or anything that doesn't have a curtain completely blocking me from the reflection, I'm like and it's just me, it's just my reflection. But I think it's a little eighteen hundreds. Victorian child who's like it's the beginning of a terrifying movie where she's going to be like, I just need to go in to get my dog.
I need to go. Yeah. So yeah, I definitely believe in ghosts. I also had a terrifying ghost experience once I was in Marfa, Texas, which is already famous for being haunted. And when I first got there, my friend Charlotte was like, oh, you have to meet Rae. She's seen the most ghosts. And I was like the most ghosts. And so I was on high alert every night when we were going to sleep with Ray.
She's seen the most ghosts she was known for having seen the most ghosts. They're keeping score. Mirtha yeah. Marfan's, very small town.
But so Ray had seen the Moscoso every night. When I went to sleep, I was sure that we would be visited by ghosts. And one night it was the middle of the night and I woke up, which is not something that usually happens to me. And I saw a ghost at the foot of our bed and I started talking to the ghost and like begging the ghost to let us finish out the night sleep. We were planning on moving to a different Airbnb the next day.
So I was like rationalizing with this ghost. I was like, look, it's just one more night. You can have your space after tonight. Just let Charlotte sleep. Let me sleep, I promise. Will be gone tomorrow. And I was speaking out loud, my friend, to sleep in the bed next to me. And over the course of me speaking out loud, I started to kind of wake up and then. He started to kind of get my bearings a little bit more, and I realized I was talking to a purse that was hanging on the wall, and that's my good story.
But what about aliens? Yeah, I'm sure they're out there somewhere, aren't we, aliens? Kind of. Yeah, I'm down with that. I like the idea that we're trying really hard. You know, like with the Mars, like as a species, we're trying to make friends.
If acting suddenly became illegal, how would you make a living? And I don't think we can go directing, producing.
I think the outside industry. I'd be either a taxi driver or a therapist or both. That's pretty good. Taxi driver like to drive. I went through a phase many years ago where I was like fully committed to becoming a taxi driver and just like taking a year off and being a taxi driver.
I just had this very romantic idea of like carting people around and talking to them and hearing their stories and just like being connected.
I love that so much. I really wanted it. You are going to love podcasting.
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Is there any risk that this thing blows up in my face? It has in twenty four years. Do I know of that?
But the environment, like some article comes out that the polo team is selling season to the school for 250 grand.
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All right, what talent or ability would you most like to have? I don't know if this is a talent or an ability, but I wish it was like I would love to not feel connected to the past, who, you know, was a crazy thing to say.
But I just feel like a lot of the shame's and a lot of the ways that I will feel emotionally bogged down is always connected to the past. And I sometimes wonder if I had more objectivity and I wasn't able to get into like a story of the past, what life would be like.
I wish that I could absorb like a really clinical approach to memory, like brain cells, like focus. I go back to, like, the puzzle.
Yes, exactly. That's what I mean.
That you could decide. Yeah, I guess it would be brain circuitry. I wish I was better at graphic design. What do you mean by that though? Are you laughing. You are laughing.
Oh no, I'm laughing. I'm just trying not to love to obnoxiously. There's something so vulnerable and I'm like, I want to be able to make things on my computer. Oh no, that was good. That's what works. Yeah.
That is the balance in the universe, Jesse.
OK, what is your greatest extravagance?
I used to babysit for a lot of fancy people. I grew up in L.A. and two of the families that I babysat for had heath ceramics in their kitchens. And so I would wash their dishes for them while I was there. And I fell in love with these plates and these bowls. And then when it was time for me to start having my own plates and bowls, I like really made a point of saving up and buying those same pundits and balls.
And do you have them still? Yes.
Yeah, I love them. I cherish them. I love that. All right. Mine's probably like my sauna.
I have a dry sauna. That's nice. That's good. Yeah. That's like a very, very extra thing to have on your house. We have a really small pool and I like to crank the heat up like two. One hundred. It feels like a hot tub. Yeah, that's nice. That's a little gross. I know that sounds ideal.
I really got to stop doing that. No. What is your relationship like with social media, you guys? How do you feel about it?
I had social media well, Facebook, I had in high school and then Instagram was in college and I was not a working actor. And so I would just do whatever I wanted. I was super goofy and I'd post embarrassing stuff. I just had no filter and I wasn't self-conscious about it. And then once I started working and people would follow my account, I stopped being as goofy.
And that's kind of painful. Like I kind of wish I was more comfortable being super embarrassing the way that I was in high school. I mean, I would record like ridiculous Lip-Sync videos of me and getting to like full scenes from School of Rock or like full numbers from Dreamgirls, knowing every trill and how to make my mouth looked like it matched perfectly. I don't think I could bring myself to post stuff like that now.
I think it's also doesn't feel as fun. At least that's how I feel. I feel like the anxiety and the risk around it, that's a larger percentage of my feeling towards it than joy of any kind.
I think it's different to talk about social media right now in the pandemic because I felt like a pre pandemic. We were sort of like maybe fifty fifty or 70, 30 when it came to like the life social media ratio. And then now because that's our way of communicating. There's so much being put into it and so much being viewed and talked about that I felt a complete different shift. I never used to feel anxiety over social media. And then when the pandemic hit, I started to feel a lot of anxiety.
And so I ended up deleting the apps from my phone and I have somebody else post for me now. I create the content and then I have somebody else posts that. I don't look at it because something shifted. And I also started to feel it connect with like there's so much happening in our country and still happening in ways that I wanted to mobilize and work. And I couldn't do it when I felt like I had this, like virtual world that was intercepting.
And I was like, I don't want to be in like a performative space. I want to be like an active space. And in order to do that, I need to just like take a little separation.
I felt a similar thing, like I felt like Instagram was now a resource that I could use more for personal growth because I realized I was using it more for, like, self hate. And I was following a lot of really beautiful people who had they had a lot of stuff I wanted. And it would make me feel really bad to just scroll through my Instagram feed. And so right around the death of Jorge Floyd, I started following a lot of more educational accounts and therapists and leaders in the black community.
And my Instagram has become way more of an educational tool in the last year. And that has made me like it a lot more.
Jessee, that's a great point. I think I'm too lazy, though, to adopt it. Yeah, I'm with you. Will you guys describe your first kiss? I don't remember mine. You don't remember your first kiss? God, I was sixteen. I have braces. I was at an after party for you can't take it with you. And it was with Brandon and it felt like a big slug in my mouth, but it was really exciting.
You've got to talk on the first one day. Yeah, yeah, I'm ready for this. I'm ready. Has heard the story before, had a huge crush on Oliver was his name. And we went to see Walk the Line at the Grove. And I remember not being able to pay attention to the movie because it was all about like our Pinkie's our grazing on the armrest. And then eventually his pinky crossed my pinky and then the ring, fingers crossed in the middle fingers and you commit to the point of figuring out your hands almost entirely entwined, and then you just slowly attach fingers and you're fully holding hands and there's like no ability to focus on that and anything else.
My whole body was in that pinky. And then I remember he was doing this really weird thing where he was putting his nose in my ear and inhaling.
And I think, you know, we were 13 or something. I think he thought that was like sensual or I don't know what the hell he thought was happening, but it was so weird. And I remember just sitting there and being like, OK, this is what it is.
This is what being in a relationship is like.
And so I was like sitting there anxiety at a 10. And I was like, you're just going to count to three. You're going to turn your head and you're going to plant a kiss on this boy. And so I counted to three. And right when I went to turn my face, he went to kiss my cheek. And so he slobbered all across my face. And I remember being like a super awkward kid.
And I was like, commit. You commit now you commit. And so even though he had, like, slugged my whole face, I kissed him and it was horribly awkward. And then we pulled apart. We both kind of laughed. And I said, well, that was awkward. And the woman in front of us was like, and that was my first thirteen.
You said, I think I was 13. I could do the math whenever I walk.
The line came out OK. Has a stranger ever changed your life? I have kind of a wild story that I've never voiced. I shared this really remarkable moment with this homeless man. I was near the water, the ocean, and I was staring at it and he was near me. And he came over and was quite close to me. And we were both kind of just staring at the water. And then we looked at each other and we just didn't say a word.
We just stared at each other for what felt like a very long time. And then we both just started laughing and he was like, You're cool. And I didn't say anything. And then we just looked back out at the ocean and he kind of went about his day. He knew all these different people. And I hung out there for a little bit, but I never said a word.
I don't know how to say that that necessarily changed my life other than I think I long for that, like all the time. And those are some of the moments I get when I'm on set, like I've shared eye contact and intimacy with people that have changed me. And that was just one of those moments where I was like, wow, we're all just, you know, here. And it's brief and it's beautiful and we're all the same. I love that.
Jesse, do you have a stranger?
I don't know if it counts, but I had an online boyfriend. I went through a really tough breakup. And then I was on a dating app and I set my location to Amsterdam because I knew I would never have to meet anyone I matched with. I matched with someone in Amsterdam. And we started talking and we talked for like months. And it really helped me get over this breakup. I love that. I think if I saw him in person, I wouldn't recognize him.
I mean, I don't know what he looks like. That's amazing.
I didn't know that. I'm learning so much about you, Jesse, over a decade later, still so much to know.
Did you guys ever play Chatroulette? Yes. Yeah, you did worse. I was wondering because you want to be a cab driver. And Jesse, you like relationships in Amsterdam. To me, that was such a grand social experiment and I loved it.
I love strangers. It's like one of the things that I love about like now that my face has been more places. And so some people have like a neuron for me and so they'll come up to me or whatever. And it's amazing because it's just like an imitation of like, well, hello, like what brought us together? What's your deal? What's happening? It's fascinating. I mean, everybody has a story. Everybody has something that's going on and we have way more.
That's life than different.
I'm just fascinated by it. You guys are going to have a great podcast because you're both really curious and wonderful and smart and witty.
You know, I actually have another kind of funnier stranger story that just came in my head that I'll say quickly. Maybe this is why I want to be a taxi driver. I was in New York. I was out with friends. I was there doing like press for a movie, was at a bar, got in a taxi. I was drunk. And the second I got my taxi to go send a text, my phone died. And I like out of just like drunk in frustration.
And I tossed my phone to the side on the taxi cab driver. I paid the guy, asked if I want a receipt. I said no.
It wasn't until I walked into my hotel room that I went no and realized that I had left my cell phone in the taxi.
And so I quickly emailed everybody that I was with to be like, hey, sorry, like lost my phone. Like, I'm going to be gone all day doing press. Like, I'll check my email the end of the day.
So the end of the day, I go back to my computer and my friends, Savannah, who does not live in New York, she lives in Florida, emails me and says, hey, this woman has your phone. I happen to be flying in to New York, come to my parent's place tonight, like after you're done.
And I was like, amazing, like, so excited to see you.
I have to run back to press for. Over don't fully understand who this person is, why they have the phone or whatever, but I'm just grateful over the phone. So I get to your parents place and she's like, it's so crazy that you know, that today. And I was like, who? And she's like, Netra. And I was like, I don't know who that is. And like, you weren't with her, you weren't like at the bar with her last night.
I was like, no, I don't know who this person is.
And it turns out that after this taxi dropped me off at the hotel, the next person it picked up was this woman who was also drunk and picked up the phone and was like, I'll charge it and return it to somebody charged it.
And the picture was of me holding my dog. And she was like, Oh, it's Savannah's friend, Bree, and contact us. Aveeno was like, Hey, I have Briese phone.
I guess I was with her last night. I'll drop it, I'll give it to you and gave it to Savanah, who happened to be flying in town that day. And I got my phone back. That's pretty rad. Yeah, that's pretty magical, Bree.
I'm not like a Karmi kind of person. I don't even like to throw the word around. But I think that means you're loved by the universe.
It means the taxis are amazing. Do you guys have a favorite movie, School of Rock? I watched it completely dubbed in Spanish when I was in Mexico.
I love that movie. Wait, Jesse, I've seen the movie. It's been a long time, but what do you love about it? I mean, I think it's a great movie.
I love the kids.
I love Jack Black's arc in that movie. I think it's written really well. I love the jokes and I love the soundtrack. And I just was obsessed with it at an age that, like, it's ingrained in me. I'll also find myself like the line I was supposed to say he's the best I've ever had. And I had this cadence stuck in my head and I kept hearing it as I ever had. And I couldn't place it for like two months because I got the script, like, way ahead of time.
And it kept being like, what is this thing that stuck in my head? Obviously, I'm going to say the line this way because it feels so in me and. Right. But what am I referencing? And I should know what I'm referencing before I do it. And then the night before we were going to shoot it, I heard it in my head. You're the worst teacher I've ever had. And I was like, Oh, School of Rock.
But yeah, I just love that movie. I think it's great. I love John Cusack. I love it all.
I think the movie I watch the most is The Princess Bride. Oh, so good. I watched it last week.
Yeah. So sweet it is. Have fun storming the castle the best.
It is a perfect movie. It's pretty great box cereal. I do magic spoon. Oh yeah. Magic Spoon. I know of magic spoon. I'm like annoyingly healthy eater. That's why your skin is beautiful. I eat like a child. I eat like Cheetos. Yeah.
I'm trying to get a little bit better. I've been marveling at how clean your room is.
Well, I moved into a new place, kind of like right before the pandemic and it's not very big.
And so I did like a huge purge and just like got rid of stuff because I was like, what does it feel like to just be free of all my stuff? How does it feel? Feels good. I want to get rid of more stuff. I really need to do this. I don't need that much stuff.
I found out I used to have tons of collections of things. I used to be obsessive and a lot of it's in storage. But I keep any time someone gives me a note, things like that, I am pretty obsessive about keeping it. I'll keep menus from restaurants that the meal was really good. I have a lot of stuff in storage, stuff like that band t shirts. I have a lot of band t shirts. I actually don't have a very good memory, so I really rely on those things.
I rely on, like the time capsules that I have stored away, that I'll find them and be like, oh yeah, that happened.
I feel like part of being best friends with Jessie is Jessie reminds me what happened because she jokes that she's my diary that talks back because I'm constantly forgetting what happened.
But to let I guess all of us off the hook in terms of memory a little bit, I think that in our industry there is a concentrated life almost, that it feels like we live a bit like the amount of stimuli in a day on set is pretty massive.
There's just too much. It's definitely a way of coping because I don't remember, like, really crazy cool things that have happened.
And I think they're all ways of just like being too scared, like at the end of the day, being an introvert and be like, that's too much.
I can't take it. Yeah, I. Does anyone have a favorite joke?
I have one that's like really easy to pull out. It's like a kids joke. Yeah. Yeah. I love it too. Will's or at a bar together and one well. Says to the other. And the other girl says, dude, you are so wasted. Thank you very much.
And, you know, you can do the noises for like five minutes straight and really get people to be confused about what's happening. But it's good.
All right. I love you both so much and truly like I would love to see how things are going if you guys are enjoying the whole process. And then I want advice from you guys. Absolutely.
All right. I love you both. Love you. Thank you for doing this so much. So much. Bye, you guys. Bye.
This podcast is brought to you in part by better help if you're having trouble meeting your goals, difficulty with relationships or you're feeling stressed or depressed. Better help offers online professional counselors who can listen and help simply fill out a questionnaire to help assess your needs. And better help will match you with your own licensed professional therapist in under 48 hours. Better help is not a crisis line. And it's not self-help. It's secure, online, affordable, professional counseling.
You can log into your account any time to schedule weekly video or phone sessions, send unlimited messages to your counselor and get timely and thoughtful responses. Everything you share is confidential. Unqualified listeners get 10 percent off their first month at better help dotcom spheeris visit better h-e l.p dotcom slash f a RISC and join. More than a million people have taken charge of their mental health with the help of an experienced, better health professional. I am so excited to welcome Rachel Hollis to Unqualified Rachel is the best selling author of Girl Wash Your Face Girl.
Stop Apologizing. And her latest. I did not see that coming. You can learn more about Rachel on our website, WMS. Rachel Hollas Dotcom. Hi, Rachel. Hi, how are you doing? I'm great. Thank you so much for doing this today. Absolutely. All right, let's call Madeline. Hello. Hi, Madeleine. Hi, Donna, how are you? I'm doing really well.
Thank you for writing to us and thank you for talking to us. Now, I am here with Rachel Hollas, who is one of our relationship experts. She is the best selling author of Girl Wash Your Face and Girl Stop Apologizing.
Hello. So, hey, Madeleine, will you tell us what's going on? Yeah, sure.
So I wrote in, you know, talking about in this day and age when everything's going on, apps and social media centralized, how do you say genuine meeting people on these dating apps and many of them for the right reasons, especially when your initial reaction is to pick people based on their photos and usually their best photos, just like Instagram is, you know?
Yeah, I have no idea. I don't know how we go about understanding who a potential partner is through these apps. Rachel.
OK, you guys, I happen to have just gotten into this world about six weeks ago, so I have a lot of thoughts for you, Madeleine. A lot of thoughts. So I got on an app that is for people who are in a similar industry to mine. So I guess that is where I would start, is I was very intentional about what kind of environment I wanted to put myself inside of. I didn't just sort of go wherever.
So that's number one. Number two, I made a lot of mistakes when I first got on this where I sort of didn't know how to set up a profile or what pictures to put or what to write. And to be honest with you, when I first went on there, just kind of like threw something at the wall to see what would stick. And then now I'm super clear because I think that we have to do this with life and the universe.
Like, you have to be very specific about what your intention is and why you're there.
So what do you mean by that? So, for instance, if you read my profile right now on this app, it would say, if you are looking for love, for a wife, for a soulmate, I love that for you.
I'm not your girl because what I found was that I was finding people who are alike. I'm just looking for my forever. And I'm like, I just got out of an 18 year relationship I'm not looking for forever. I'm just looking for like to meet people and and sort of see what's out in the world. Have you done that yet? Have you sort of set your intention for, like, why you're even on this app in the first place?
Yeah, absolutely. And I think I'm turning twenty seven this year. So I'm like in the in-between age where you still have what we call the Peter Pan, the guys who just don't want to grow up, and these women that go there for hookups or whatever they're on the app for. And then like me, I'm looking for something more serious and I'm actually trying to take time to get to know people. Right. OK, so I was really intentional in the photos that I chose, like I chose photos that look like the kind of thing I would want to do with this potential person.
It's me golfing. It's me drinking scotch. It's me climbing a mountain, running a marathon. Like it's not sexy photos. I'm, like, really specific in what I'm trying to put out in the world. And I guess I would say the same for you when I'm looking through photos. Maybe you find this that like I'm like, oh, I can hang out with that person. Right. Because for me, everything starts with like I want to be friends with this person.
That's how I roll.
I have a question having not like been a part of the dating app world ever. If you get rejected, do you take that personally at all? Because it must happen all the time. Are you even aware? Do you become kind of numb to it, I guess?
Yeah, I think, you know, in my experience, you just do it so often and nothing like a I'm is sitting up with twenty four seven. But because you're meeting people so much more rapidly than if you would meet someone in person. I don't take it to offense by any means, especially now with quarantining or not meeting people on dates in person. You're doing this over face time. It's a better way to kind of get to know people, but there's many times that you just probably won't text them after that and say most messages are just an appalling illness, don't talk anymore.
So it happens all the time. I don't want to waste my time and I don't wanna waste your time either. So as long as we're on the same page, that's fine.
Yeah. Have you gone out on any dates? Yeah. I mean, I start with messaging them a little bit and getting a feel for them and then I really enjoy the video chats just because right now it's safer. And then it's also better to be like, do I really want to meet this person in person right now? And it's so hard to get a call to test the risks of it all. So I have been on a few, but it's definitely a lot harder now with covid.
Has the process been enjoyable or not?
No, I definitely found them enjoyable. I think, you know, obviously that didn't work out because no one reason or another. But I'm such a social being, that's just who I am. So I do have a hard time getting up because I just love talking to people. I enjoy going out days. I enjoy meeting people and getting to know them.
I'm so with you, Madeleine. I read your letter and I really felt like I have no idea what to tell her because I don't know how you understand someone's authenticity, but I do think there are clues that I'm sure that all three of us could probably pick up on with intention.
Yeah, I think it comes back to this idea of no one setting that intention for yourself. I have met like a shocking amount of cool people on the app that I'm on. And I know this is easier said than done, but I'm so like, what an adventure. Like, let's see what's happening out in the world. And same as you, Madeleine, like I've been quarantining and when my kids are with their dad, like I'm by myself in a house.
So I'm just excited to talk to someone. And I've met like literally really cool people. And part of that is I don't limit it to geography. So like, I have guys in the app that, like are in Stockholm, are in Mexico City just because I'm like, well, I can't go anywhere anyway. So like, if you are a conversationalist and you love people again, I'm just like, let's meet people. So in terms of rejection, at least the app that I'm on, if you came up, I could either x you or I could give you a check.
And if I give you a check and you give me a check, then it can access. But if we both don't check each other, then it just disappears. So it's not like I'm even aware of who I checked and now they're not talking to me. Does that make sense? Yeah. So it doesn't feel like a rejection. It just feels like, OK, that wasn't the person. But I do think that going in with a more open approach and letting that conversation guide you, Madeline, if that's something that's super important to you, because I have been pleasantly surprised, like I have seen people that I was like, what is your deal?
Because honestly, if you have six pack abs in your profile picture, you're an automatic ex for me. Get like I don't care if you have abs, but I don't need that to be what you're leading with in your life. Just like douche bag. No, thank you. If your picture is up at Burning Man, get out. Get out.
I don't want you get. No, no. That's your lead photo that ten years ago you went to burning fat. Yeah.
My litmus test for this is very weird, but I'm just having fun. What it reminds me of, Madelin, is like years ago when I was married and I was trying to get pregnant for the first time, we were like robots, like we have to have sex all the time. So we're trying to make a baby. And eventually this thing that used to be fun and beautiful and loving becomes this like thing you have to do. It stops being what it was meant to.
And I kind of think that that's how dating apps could really easily become that you're like trying so hard to find the thing that you're not allowing.
Sort of the universe to give you whatever you are meant to have today. I so agree with that and I think people also have that ability to be more judgmental and apps because think about if you were to meet someone in person, you do it maybe on the weekends if you go out or to a coffee shop, which doesn't happen like 24/7. But now you have this whole database of people in your phone that you can just continuously swipe. And I think people see it as like, oh, well, I don't really like that.
So they swipe away really quickly until they can find the perfect Madeleine.
We've talked to a lot of callers and we've had this discussion about the idea of dating apps being perceived as kind of a game. You know, they're designed to draw you in. They're designed to keep you swiping because they want you on there as long as possible. So I think that's an important thing to keep in mind as well as as you're exploring this stuff.
Yeah, well, I was going to say to Madeleine, do you feel like you've had success? Like, are you getting sort of enough matches or is it that you're getting matches? But then once you start communicating, it's not what you were hoping it was going to be?
Yeah, I definitely get the matches not to toot my own horn or anything. No girl to your horn. Yes. When you start shuffling out and you start having the conversations with people like some guy out and some go to video chat and then either it's, yeah, I just want to meet this person because I can see a connection with them or we vibe or is just I don't think I want to go any further with this. So I think a lot of the time if I get to the video chat and because I'm just so talkative, I don't know that turns people off or if it's just never really pans out past that.
And that could be good and bad because I don't obviously want to waste my time going out with these people on dates during a pandemic if it's not going to work out anyway.
I have tried really hard in this process. Like if I'm going to meet someone, even if it's just to have a new guy friend, I'm going to show up as myself. If I'm too loud, if I'm too extra, we need to know that right now because I'm not going to pretend to be something. I'm not just someone to, like, go to a driving range with. So I feel like it's important that you show up as you because the real you is that talkative and does have that energy and is bringing that to a relationship.
I know I sound like a fairy godmother, but the person who is meant for you is going to love that about you, right?
Yeah. Take it or leave it.
I love that approach, but I feel like I'm the kind of person that would take things kind of personally or I would attempt to modify my personality. Even if I wasn't into somebody, I would chalk it up as some kind of fucked up win. Right.
But that feels exhausting and counterproductive.
Going through a divorce was one of the hardest things I've ever done in my life. But the beauty on the other side of it is that I will never play small again. I will never do something to try and fit into what a man would prefer I be.
And so if that means that I am alone for the rest of my life because nobody can handle all of this well, shit, I'm fantastic and I love me and that's going to be enough.
Yeah, well, I hope that in the next six months you can start to meet people in person and maybe some of these questions will feel moot.
Something that I have done that has been successful is going to walk. I live in Austin, Texas. It's gorgeous. There's a lake here, like, let's go get coffee. We're socially distance, we're outside, which feels safe. Let's go on a walk, because I think that that is a really great sort of icebreaker to get to know someone, because No. One, you don't have to hold eye contact. So you're both looking forward. You don't have to look at each other, which makes you feel at least me like calmer and it's less pressure.
And I also feel like then if you're in conversation and you're actively doing something, let's say that you are higher energy, Madelin, and you're talking more and he's a little bit lower energy. And so he maybe doesn't have as much communication. If you're doing something together, then you have opportunity to build conversation around what's happening. Right. So like, oh my gosh, look at that dog. Do you have any dog? Then you're building a conversation, the two of you, not sort of like, oh, now it's my turn to ask a question.
Now it's yours. Now I'm talking too much. I'm overthinking No. One. I love it because I probably was going to do that walk anyway. So I'm getting exercise. I'm looking out at nature and I got to meet someone new. And if it doesn't work, well, we give it our best shot.
I love that. And honestly, that is probably like my ideal first date is like going for a walk and it's going to be like lost in nature, even if you know that your ultimate goal is to, like, find your person.
I think that if you can shift the mindset and kind of walk into this season, both literally and figuratively, here's how I think of it.
I'm like the first time that I went on a walk with this guy, I was like. You could be a friend I'm going to have for the rest of my life or a funny anecdote I tell my girls later over wine. Either way, I win like I'm winning in this scenario no matter what. And so I feel like I just go into these situations with such a like, oh, it's an adventure and it's something new and fun. And that takes a lot of the pressure off of it.
And then even if it doesn't work out the way that you wanted it to, I feel like you still are sort of like embracing the uncertainty of what this is, which I at least for me, I think is a really fun way to approach something that can be as serious as dating Madeleine.
Do you feel the age pressure that we put on all women in our society?
Yeah, I mean, absolutely. There's definitely that pressure. I mean, I've been single for two and a half years and the thing I've been focusing on the most, those two 1/2 years of myself and my confidence and obviously I'm twenty seven. So like I'm getting up in the age of what's inside of you, you should be dating someone, seriously. But I have a state of mind that I would rather meet someone that is my person that respects my views and the other person and supports me all in all than just settling.
And I would never just settle. So I think, you know, because I'm on these dating apps and I'm a confident woman, it might be a little hard to find someone. And not saying that people on the dating apps are confident. I'd rather be pickier and have my high standards than just meet anyone and everyone.
If I could give my eight year old son Jack, one piece of advice that I don't know if I could ever do this, but I would encourage him to not get married in his twenties, a million percent. We are in a place in our society where our twenties to me are built for kind of selfishness in a good way. They're like the years that you have to work on your career that I wish I could remove the age element from all of this, like the pressure of getting married and having kids.
I got married at twenty seven and then I got divorced at thirty. It still is a time of growth and I don't want you to have that pressure. So you maybe are in a relationship that isn't quite right.
Right? Absolutely. I also feel there's like this magic time of I don't have any pressure. I've had the kids, I've been married, I have zero pressure. And so that I'm sure Madeleine is why it's easier for me to say, like, just have fun, just explore.
Just be curious because I don't feel the pressure.
But I also think that the thing that you desire this partner, your person, I actually don't think that that's something that you can chase down. I really do think that the universe brings that to you. And it's time so perfectly. And what I always say to young women in my community is like, what if your dream, like your dream partner, like this is your soulmate?
This person's going to knock your socks off. You're like, best thing ever is coming in two years. Or five, and you spend the next two years, the next, like, no matter what you do, you can't make it come faster, you can't move. But but I promise you, it's going to be exactly what you need. But you spend years of your life stressing or anxious or wishing or sort of living in scarcity, waiting for this thing that is already yours, like it's already lined up for you.
It's already going to happen. I just would hate for you to waste any time worrying about something that's going to happen no matter what. You just don't know when. Right, and I love looking at it that way. I shouldn't be chasing something. I mean, I didn't I totally agree with you. I think, you know, it comes to you when the time is right.
I love that mentality. If you are able to have that perspective of I'm going to have a great time the next two years if a relationship comes of that, that's awesome. But, Madeleine, you've already been single for two and a half years. You've worked on yourself. It's a great time for you to play and explore other friendships and relationships without putting too much pressure on yourself. If you could psychologically trick your mind into waiting till you're like thirty four, if things happen sooner, if you get married and have babies, great.
You mentioned early on and I think you're totally right, that we are in an age where people are more independent for a longer period of time.
And I think you're mentioning the Peter Pan syndrome, which I feel like at the age of twenty seven, your maturity spectrum is somewhere between the ages of twenty three and thirty seven. It's just Madeleine, how how you figure out what their maturity ages and if that combined with yours.
Madeleine, are you like searching for partners that are your age. What's the spectrum there. Because I only look for people who are older on my app.
I have I think twenty six to thirty five is my age range and I've kind of played around with this because I had it lower and I was like, yeah, no, absolutely no.
I was like a child so I played around a little bit. But even like when I meet someone my age or like a year or two older, I'm like, yeah, they're probably still young.
First of all, I want it to be either my age or older and I'm thirty eight. So I feel like as a man, by the time you're thirty eight, like, I hope to God you're starting to get your life together. I'm even looking in those photos like I'm looking in the bio that someone wrote. I want to know that you've done your work meaning like did you do the therapy, did you figure out your shit? Did you deal with past trauma?
And I think that you can tell that about someone really early on. I'm immediately going to go real deep with someone in conversation real deep.
And if you can't immediately go there with me, then I already know it's not going to be a thing because you can be like, you know, a cool guy and we're just grabbing beers or whatever. But we still have to be able to talk about something other than sort of surface level stuff, because that says to me that you haven't ever unpacked the way you feel. And if you have an impact where you feel, it means you've never met with a therapist.
And if you've never met with a therapist, do not talk to me.
Do you say things like, I've been through a divorce? Have you gone through something like that?
Yeah, I'm really honest about all my stuff and not in a way that's like, oh, let me cry to you right now, but let's go back to that, like, first walk, like, you know, everyone's like, how was it for you? I'm like, well, it was really hard. And also I went through a divorce and I'm not sort of unpacking and like, saying all the stuff. Based on your response, I want to know how you can handle that.
Well, and your time is limited. Yes, exactly.
But I also think, like, even if someone was just going to be my friends, I want the kind of person who can like you want to talk about philosophy. You're going to tell me about the time that you did ayahuasca in Costa Rica. Like, I want someone who who has sort of lived all the things.
And I feel like you can figure that out really fast.
I like this ayahuasca. I was called my angel.
Hey, Madeleine, did we give you some food for thought at least you absolutely did.
Oh, good. Well, I really feel hopeful. I feel like in the next six months, like we will be coming out of the cocoons that we've been in. And so things may be changing rapidly. I would love it, Madeleine, if you felt like checking back in with us, the more you learn about, like dating apps or if you if you found somebody.
Yeah, of course. I would love to. Thank you so much. It was so awesome talking to the both of you. I'm so grateful for this experience.
Again, thanks so much. Yeah. Good luck. Thank you. You too. Bye bye. Rachel, thank you so much. You gave amazing advice.
Oh, my gosh. Thank you for having me. Have a wonderful rest of your day. You too. Bye.