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From ABC, this is the 10 percent happier podcast. I'm Dan Harris. Hey, everybody, happy New Year. We actually made it to twenty twenty one, this is episode three of our New Year's series and it's a big one.


We've got caramel on the show. Before we get into that, a little context on this series as we finally turn the page on the, shall we say, unique challenge that was 20 20. We at 10 percent happier are endeavoring to bring you some useful counterprogramming against all of the traditional New Year New You noise.


As you may have heard in the past two episodes, you won't be getting any pressure from us to make big transformative resolutions that you will then inevitably spend the next several months feeling guilty about not keeping.


Instead, we're inviting you to explore a counterintuitive path to a better twenty twenty one. And it involves self-love. To that end, we've got this New Year's series going on here on the podcast, and we've also got a free New Year's meditation challenge launching over in the 10 percent happier app. I am keenly aware that self-love might sound to some of you a little cliched or a little impossible, but trust me, it is neither. It's also not about becoming self obsessed or becoming so blissed out that you turn passive self compassion, which is just another way of saying self-love is real nuanced work, as you may have heard in Wednesday's episode with Chris Girma.


Yet it also has remarkable and scientifically proven benefits. It's a bit of a paradox. One of the best ways to make lasting change is to first accept yourself. Today's guest is one of the most prominent proselytizers for self-love. He's somebody who knows what it is to struggle and to mess up and come out on the other side with self-love. And he spent the last several years telling his story and helping other people directly as well. Kurama was the first out gay black man on reality TV when he appeared on MTV's The Real World Philadelphia back in 2004.


But then he left TV and found out he was a dad. He got custody of his son, adopted his son's half brother and worked for a decade as a social worker before returning to the media world. He's now the culture expert on the blockbuster Netflix reboot of Queer Eye, which is a great show. I hadn't been watching it, but a lot of the young staffers at 10 percent happier encouraged me to watch it. And it's actually pretty amazing.


Chromeo also hosts his own podcast and is the author of a memoir, as well as a children's book which he co-wrote with his son. In today's conversation, we talk about why, for Kuramoto, learning to love himself started with learning to love his first name. We talk about overcoming negative messages inside his abusive childhood home, about whether self love is selfish, why men seem to struggle so much with the concept of self-love and the areas in his own life where he struggles the most to practice what he preaches.


Not only are Karabo and I talking about self love in this episode, but he's also going to join us as a guest expert in our New Year's meditation challenge. As you may know, 10 percent happier is running a free 21 day meditation challenge inside the 10 percent happier app. It starts on Monday, January 4th. In this challenge, our teachers will guide you through a series of meditations demonstrating the benefits of developing self-love, self compassion, self acceptance, and also, crucially, showing you how to actually do this.


You can join the challenge right now for free by downloading the 10 percent happier app today, wherever you get your apps or by visiting 10 percent dotcom, that's all one word spelled out. If you already have the app, just open it up and follow the instructions. The challenge, as I mentioned, will kick off on Monday, January 4th. Let's dive in now with Paramo.


Paramo, thank you for coming up. Excited to be here with you and thank you for all the work that you're doing. And this space, like you said, that can be cheesy sometimes, but is very necessary.


I am fully in agreement and I want to say that I've been watching a lot of you on TV recently and enjoying it thoroughly. It's an incredible show and you do a great job.


Thank you. I appreciate that. It's quite the blessing. You know, you work in this. I've been in this industry now for about six years ago. Back in the day, I did something on reality television at the college. I don't really count that as part of the career because it took me 12 years of doing nothing to come back. And you only dream of being able to be on something that's going to make an impact that people are going to love.


And so I'm just like pinching myself every single morning.


Well, that's gratitude. Another potentially cheesy subject which maybe we'll touch on today. I talk about this all the time on my show, which is that it's you know, a lot of the cliches are annoying because they're cliche, but also they're true.


And there is a real service and sort of diving in and talking about it in a way that makes them accessible. So let's talk about self-love.


Why is self-love so important to you? I'll just point out that in episode one of Season five, you are wearing a T-shirt that says Be kind to yourself.


So why is this so important to you? Well, for me, it really stems from the fact of being black, gay, born to immigrant parents and living in Texas. You hear a lot of people saying a lot of negative things to you consistently. I don't remember a part of my childhood where I ever felt fully accepted or ever felt like people ever fully wanted me around. There was always spaces I walked into where either overtly people would tell me that whatever part of my identity was in that room they didn't like or I would feel it as I walked into a new friend's home and the parents would watch me as I played in the room or watch me as I went to the restroom as if something was going to be stolen, or as if I walk into a room and someone finds out I'm gay.


And then they start asking me, well, have you been to church or your parents? I take you to your church a little things to let me know that they have a problem with me. And when you live that type of existence, you start to find yourself really in a very down and depressed state very often. There's many times I would not like myself. I wish that with someone else, even not to my name. For the majority of my high school years in middle school, I didn't go by Kurama because I was tired of people, teachers saying Kookmin Kakhovka, oh my gosh.


And then the cacophony of laughter from the kid and then the teacher never even after a whole school year, still never being able to get my name right. You start to be like, oh, just call me caking, call me KVI. I started making up all these nicknames. All of this was part of the journey I had to go to to find love of myself. And it was so important for me to find that love, because once I found the love of every single piece of my identity, once I found that self-love of who I was and who I continuously was growing to be is when I started to be more confident is when I started to be able to say to people, hey, I know that you might be on your own journey of trying to understand all of my identities, which is fine for you.


But just know as you're on your journey, it is not going to affect me loving myself on my journey. It's not going to affect me being kind to myself. It's not going to affect me from still knowing that I deserve a happy and good life, just as you deserve one as well. And so that's why self-love is such an important thing to me, because it's it's something I didn't have at first that I had to truly work to get.


It takes a lot of courage, what you're describing, and just to go deeper on that, I understand that lack of acceptance. Was there in your own home with your dad, who was, if I've got it right? Quite abusive?


Yeah, my father was physically abusive to my mother. He wasn't physically abusive to me as a child, but he was emotionally abusive. But there was both conscious and unconscious, emotional and mental abuse that was happening in my home. And I say this because I think people need to understand that when people are in your home, especially sometimes when we get older, we don't realize how we could be hurting another person next generation. So, yes, there was things that my father was consciously saying to me, but there was even things that he would be doing that he didn't realize.


For instance, my father is of Jamaican descent. He's also a Rastafarian. Rastafarians are very beautiful people, very kind people. But my father had his own demons he was struggling with as he was starting his journey to become a Rastafarian. One of those journeys is that he couldn't reconcile his relationship with his religion, with his relationship with his son. And that battle within him caused him to do unconscious things of like dancing to music that was particularly homophobic.


I mean, there was a song that was popular in the 90s that people have heard about from an artist named Buju Banton, who has since denounced the song and apologized. The lyrics were literally boom, bye bye in about five whitehead and. Why is the Pasqua or Jamaican dialect and Botchy I mean homosexual. And so was Boom-Boom, which is shoot shoot a gay man and the head. And this was put under a very catchy beat and Jamaican and Caribbean people worldwide.


And some Americans would be dancing to this. And so as my father was in this household and saying consciously negative things to me, he was also putting this song on at family gatherings and having family members who I did feel accepted and loved by dancing to the song because they did not understand that it was hurting me. And so I had to kind of get to the place of being able to help him understand these are your conscious emotional behaviors and these are your unconscious emotional behaviors that are abusing and you need to be aware of them if we're ever going to have a chance to grow.


And so it was hard because you're getting it from all directions, consciously and unconsciously, and that will continuously chip away at your self-esteem and your self love. But I have to continuously find the ability to look in that mirror and practice saying good things to myself to give my self-esteem back up and find that self-love.


Well, it took me just where I wanted to go because I think a lot of people will have the question, how do I do this? We've acknowledged that it can sound a little sappy, although it is really, really important, and you've made that case very well. But how to actually operationalize this advice?


Yeah, no, I'm totally with that because I have the same question. And also, I used to hate when people talked about your self-esteem growing up because it always sounded like this very like floaty thing in the air self-esteem. Like, you can't really touch it. You know, it's there, you know, and I always had a problem with it. And as I got older, I realized that self-esteem is nothing but the words we practiced saying to ourselves.


And, you know, I challenge most people who are listening right now to think about when you wake up in the morning and you're getting ready for work, the minute we step in that mirror or we start getting dressed, the first thing we start doing is being like, this doesn't fit anymore. Oh, look at my hair. It doesn't look good up my nose. Oh, I want to make these clear indications to yourself in the mirror of the things you don't like about yourself.


And what you're doing in that moment is all you're doing is practicing the opposite of self-love. You're practicing the opposite of a healthy self-esteem. You're practicing saying negative things to yourself. And so I realized immediately that in the morning time, all I had to do was start practicing saying one positive thing about myself in that mirror. And it sounds so, again, like flighty, you know, whatever. And but it works. As I'd walk into the room and I would want to say something negative about myself, I would immediately stop and say, OK, find something on your body or find something on your face or find something about who you are that you could say is positive.


And I'm talking about this start up with early on a me just being like I like my eyebrows. I mean, that sounds crazy, but I look in the mirror, I'll be like, oh, this eyebrow cute today. Like, it's sitting right. And it was just enough for me to hold onto just enough so that I could say, you know what, OK, tomorrow I can find something else. And then what would happen in that day where I would get negative narratives or negative comments being thrown at me from the outside world every time that would happen, I'd be like, well, you know what?


You might have said that, but at least my eyebrows are cute. And I would say that to myself and I'd be practicing sort of a barrier to the negative things that would come out to me and is only because I had established in the morning time what it. Was that I loved about myself that day and every day it got stronger. I added one more thing, added one more thing to the point where I found myself just being able to say, you know what, I don't care what you say because I love this.


I love me. I still find myself wanting to improve things. But now I don't let that improvement shackle me. I don't let that improvement bring me down. I practice daily saying the things I love about myself, knowing that even as I'm on a path to change or grow in ways that I want to, not because other people want me to, I can still love myself. There's a lot of great stuff in there, I just want to sort of emphasize a bunch of it and then I have a question.


You can have a desire to work on yourself that doesn't come from aggression, but in fact, comes from affection that is doable. And there is evidence here.


A few days ago, we posted an episode from a psychologist named Chris Germar. He's one of the leading experts in what's known as self compassion. And he talks a lot about replacing the negative dialogue sort of counterprogramming against the habitual negative dialogue you have with a more positive dialogue. Yep.


However, that does lead me to a question for you, which is you're quite a bit younger than I am. But there used to be an SNL character played by the now I guess let's call him controversial. Some people believe he's disgraced, although there's been pushback against that. Senator from Minnesota, Al Franken, Democrat. He used to be a comedian and he would play a character on SNL who would look himself in the mirror. I think his name was Stuart Smalley.


And he would look himself in the mirror and say something like, you're good, you're something, and doggone it, people like you.


And so so how do you do this sort of looking in the mirror and saying and finding something positive and and affirming that about yourself, how do you protect that from becoming just sort of being conceited or just self puffery or, you know, sort of empty praise?


I think one of the things for me is it's about I remind myself that I'm keeping the compassion up and I'm keeping the ego down, keeping the compassion of keeping the ego down. And that's part of my daily reminder. There's a couple of things that I remind myself daily. You know, one of the beauties of a smartphone is that you can set reminders for yourself. And I have little alarms that go off that they, like, meditate now, you know, find time for yourself, you know, love yourself right now, do little things.


And one of them is saying, keep the compassion of ego down, which that is a reminder to me that what I'm doing right now is the act of being compassionate to myself. I'm loving myself in a way that's not to harm anyone else because I now have this ego or this grandiosity. It's about me trying to say I'm going to hug me. I'm going to give myself a little bit of a hug right now. But it's not about me saying I'm better than someone else because I'm now falling in love with my highbrows.


I've fallen in love with whatever. And I think that's the key is remembering this is just for you to feel protected, to feel safe, to feel love is not for you to then repeat the behavior you experience and start to make someone else feel bad. So keep the compassion of ego down. And I think when you can say that to yourself, it's a quick little reminder of, yeah, I'm in the mirror right now, but this is for me to help me and not to start to want to hurt anyone else.


I like that compassion of compassion toward myself. Up, ego down. This isn't about building myself up at somebody else's expense. It's about, as we said before, counteracting some of the negative storylines that we were either telling ourselves or other people are telling us.


I've said many, many times, perhaps to the point of being annoying, that self-love can come off as cheesy. Do you think there's something about men in our culture that really blocks us from embracing this approach?


Yeah. What blocks of society is the best that society has fed us? And that's the problem with it. I mean, we literally live in a society where we are not allowed to be holistic. You know, when men are fully authentic and are their whole selves, all of a sudden it's like, no, no, no, no, no. I feel uncomfortable with you, you know, showing emotions. It makes you somehow less of a man.


And we hear this narrative being pushed to us as boys from early on. And, you know, one of the things that I love about my show, Queer Eye is that we break down that and let men see immediately that their vulnerability is their strength. Their vulnerability is sexy. You know, I have a story that I've told before that just it was the first time I really realized how how horrible our society grooms men when it comes to sharing what they're going through.


We all know as children, you know, a baby cries with the little girl or little boy. You run to them, you support them, you help them. And then somewhere, as the children get older, we say, OK, girls, you can still continue on this journey to be smart, strong and vulnerable boys. You can be smart and strong, but you can't be vulnerable. And I was I was on the football team when I was running down the field and I hurt my leg later, find out that it was broken.


And I remember my coach screaming at me, Brown, get up, run it all brown, get up. And I'm like, he's like Brown. You better not brown. Michael Brown, get up. He's just, like, screaming at me. And I'm sitting there, like, in pain. I mean, I'm a fourteen year old child at this point of. 14 year old child, and instead of letting me know that what I'm feeling is, OK, I need a heal like this to get you off the field, it was like, get up, run it off.


You got this. You can do this and this sort of affirmation in this negative, you know, this counter vulnerable way of like, oh, yeah, I'm being supportive because I'm telling you can run it off. But instead of like what I actually needed, that moment was someone to say it's OK to let these tears fall down your eyes. I share the story because at the same moment, the girls track team also practice at the same time they are running around.


And this young girl, also 14, maybe 15, was running around the hurdles and she hit a hurdle and she had scraped her knee and she fell down. And it's not a comparison of pain. If she hurt herself, that same coach ran over to her and was holding her and was like, are you OK? Help pick her up. You know what? The track coach, all the other girls on the team, we're all around them.


And I'm sitting on the stage. It's like you dirty son of a you know, like like how do you like I'm over here, like, literally find out two hours later it's broken and you run to her rescue, but you don't run to my rescue. And I think that's part of what we do as a culture to young men. We tell them, again, you can be smart, you can be strong, but vulnerability is out the door and we start to then pick those habits up.


As we get older, we start to be like you start to see these narratives pushed in television and movies and, you know, like, oh, he cried too much. Oh, something must be wrong with him, don't you know? You don't want that guy. You want the guy that stoic and quiet and not going to share that's going to be seen, not heard. And that does such harm to a man's ability to discuss what he's going through so that he can find self-love, find confidence when we're OK.


We're are we talk to guys. I can't tell you how many of them say I don't like myself when in a private conversation with me, they constantly are like, I have so much self-esteem issues. They're like, I hate my body, I hate my hair, I hate everything. And I'm like, have you told anybody this? And they're like, I can't tell anybody this. You're lucky I'm even telling you this. And it just goes to show that we have been shut off and we need to open ourselves back up because it's doing us a disservice, because we're better men, better fathers, we're better brothers.


When we are able to show up and say, you know what, I can be strong and smart for you right now, but also I can be vulnerable for you right now. Harty plus one to all of that, we've just been talking about the sort of stereotypical male blocks when it comes to self-love or self compassion or self acceptance, I think there is. And again, these are gross generalizations on that. But I think the stereotypical female issue I've heard with this is that it's somehow would be selfish or self-indulgent to practice self-love.


Have you heard this before? And what do you say when you hear it?


That is self-indulgent. The practice of.


Yes. Selfish. You know, like I should be focusing on my kids. I should be focusing on other people in need. I don't want to focus on myself. Yeah.


I think that it's a horrible way to think. I think that part of this is part of the way our society has groomed. This is like you should always be doing something. You should always be constantly moving and acting. And if you're not, there's something wrong with you. You know, again, I think a lot of this could be changed. You know, like if we could just really figure out how to, like, revamp our educational system, because I think about the things that we were able to do in first grade and kindergarten and third grade, where it was like you had creativity time, you had time where you took naps, where you could, like, sit quiet and then all of a sudden you got to middle school and high school.


And it was like, bell ringing Go, go, go. Why are you not more activities? Why are you not here? And you start to feel the sort of guilt of like, why am I not doing enough? And that guilt would then make you feel like, OK, well, I don't have time for me because I should be doing more for others. I should be doing more altogether. And I think that we need to really look at that and say, why are we grooming a generation to feel as if they can't slow down, like they can't take a breath, like they can't take a moment to focus on them.


This is for me, in my opinion, why so many people find themselves in careers or relationships that they don't want to be, because instead of slowing down and saying. What is this really making me happy? Is this really OK? Is this is this really what I want? Do I feel so I feel alive in this moment? Is this beating my soul? We just feel like, OK, I'm going to keep going through, I'm just going to keep going on.


I'm already in it, so I'm going to keep going on. And I think that's such an unhealthy way to live. And then I think there's something else that we do in those moments where we look at other people and we see what they're doing, and that stops us from doing what we need to do for ourselves. And I say to people all the time, comparison is the thief of joy. Comparison is the thief of joy. Because when you start to compare yourself to what other people are doing, you still your own joy, you still your own self love.


And I look at you when as a parent myself, I used to look at other parents to be like, how are they getting through work, cooking, daycare, you know, homework activities. Because I used to come home and I used to sit in my car before I'd walk in the house to go help my kids with homework and do food. And I'd be like, I don't know if I could walk in there. Obviously, I always did walk in there, but I found the courage of myself.


But there was a time when I was like, I can't walk, I can't do this. And part of that came from me comparing myself to other people and saying, look at what they're doing and I'm not doing this. And so when you compare yourself to what other people are doing, what they're how their relationships are going, it makes you feel like you need to do more or you're not doing enough. Again, both those things are going to affect your self-esteem and the way you're loving yourself and loving the capabilities that you have.


And so for me, I slow myself down and say I'm going to remove myself from comparing myself to other people so I can love what I have. I can love what I'm doing and know that, again, if I need to get better, that's fine. It doesn't mean that I have to take away from the love I have for myself. And also, how do you communicate that to your kids? Like, hold on, Dad needs time for himself and it's OK for me to express this and then take the time.


I've heard that you've said that actually getting kids hammered home to the importance of self-love and self care. Oh, my gosh.


Yeah, you know, when you have children in front of you mirroring your behavior, oh, you you figure you're doing something good and then all of a sudden you see them pick up your behavior and you're like, oh, hold on. You know, I remember for me, I used to be very quick tempered, like very quick tempered. And I remember the first time I saw my kid snap at someone similar to me. I'm like, no, no, no, I'm not hearing this.


I'm walking out of the room. And I was like, oh, no, no, no. You come back. And he was like, that's what you do. And I was like, oh, you know? And so you start to see what other people but then also in a sense of self love and and like compassion for yourself, I started to see that he would be himself because he wasn't doing enough. It's what inspired my children's book.


I perfectly design is because my son came home one day and was like, I wish I was somebody else. And as a parent, you never want to hear that. And I was like, oh, what is going on here? And he was like, I don't think I look good enough. I don't think that I'm smart enough. I don't think that I'm doing enough because look at my friend, look at what their lives are. And I gave him the mantra.


You are perfectly designed as a reminder that you are. And that's what we wrote the book about. And it was something that I reflected to me of like, what am I putting out and what am I first of all, what am I doing to myself? And then what am I putting out that would make my son want to come home and say, I wish I was someone else? And that was a tough reflection. But, you know, I'm glad for it.


Much more of my conversation with Kurama right after this. Everyone likes shopping online, but searching for coupon codes can be a bummer, so make saving online a breeze with Capital One shopping capital when shopping is a free tool that instantly searches for available coupon codes and automatically applies them at checkout, just download Capital One shopping to your computer and let it do the work for you so easy and you don't even need a Capital One card to use it. Capital One shopping.


It's kind of genius. What's in your wallet? Savings and available coupons. Very. Hey, guys, just one item of business before we dive back in to my conversation with Chromeo, as I mentioned at the top of the show, 10 percent happier is running a free twenty one day New Year's meditation challenge inside the 10 percent happier app. It starts on Monday, January 4th. In the challenge, our teachers will guide you through a series of meditations demonstrating the benefits of developing self love, self compassion, self acceptance, and then also, of course, showing you how to operationalize this in your life.


Here's how the challenge works. Your goal will be to meditate at least fifteen out of twenty one days each day. You'll get a short video from me. On most of the days I'll be accompanied by one of four very special experts, including Karabo. And after the video you'll get a related meditation, which is about ten minutes long. These practices of self compassion, combined with the regular practice that comes with the challenge, will we hope, help you develop the resilience that is so critical when it comes to making sustained and healthy change?


Are you new to this podcast? A quick plug if you are for meditation, if you haven't done it before, meditation gives you the keys to understanding yourself, your thought patterns, your unexamined assumptions and the stories you tell yourself about who you are. And this kind of understanding is critical when you're learning how to motivate yourself without using shame, which is, we think, a really good idea at this time of year when so many of us are making resolutions.


If you've never meditated before, no sweat. The challenge is specifically designed to teach you how to do it. You can also invite your friends and family to join you in the challenge. You'll be notified when your friends meditate and you can keep each other accountable, hopefully kindly. So join the challenge right now by downloading 10 percent happier the app for free wherever you get your apps or you can visit 10 percent dotcom. That's all one word spelled out. If you already have the app, just open it up and follow the instructions.


The challenge starts Monday, January 4th. All right.


Let's get back to my conversation now with Kurama.


I'm curious, what's your growth edge now, what's the hardest place for you to love yourself even as you proselytize on behalf of self-love?


I would tell you, it's probably. It's based on intentions and actions and where those two things meet, we live in a council culture, which I don't believe in. I believe instead of a council culture, we should be living in a council culture where instead of we tell people to go away, you're wrong. We should bring them in and try to educate them. And so as someone who is now in the public eye and who tried desperately to help and do things, I find myself in these positions where especially when I reach out to people who have opposite views than me or I've heard some part of the community that I identify with when I try to support them, I talk with them and try to change the culture from within.


You get attacked and then when you get attacked for trying to do good, it does affect your self-esteem and you can find yourself feeling really depressed and down because you know your intention and you know what your actions are. But those are not in lining up with what the outside world sees or what the outside world thinks you should do. And and when you're in the public eye and you hear you're a horrible person for trying to work with people who are different in hopes of creating change, I think that's the part now in my life where I'm trying to find a balance of being true to myself, respecting what other people feel, understanding why they feel that way, but still remembering my intention and knowing like, OK, this might not pay off in the immediate future.


But like when you change policy, when you change things, it works later. And that sort of helped me to rebuild my self love around the things that I'm doing in hopes for others, if that makes any sense.


It doesn't mean if people are saying on Twitter that you're a horrible person for doing what you're doing, you may have a few nanoseconds where you believe them.


Yeah, a lot more than a few nanoseconds, a lot more. And I think that's probably where I am now. I'm a big believer that with my platform and with the fact that I have such different identities or beautified entities that are different other people, I don't have the liberty to just walk away from spaces that don't want me. It's my belief that I have to go into those spaces. I have to talk to people who don't see the beauty in who I am if I have to.


Because if I don't, then what about the person behind me who doesn't have the confidence, who doesn't have the platform that I have? If I don't walk in this room and try to change something, change some hearts, change the minds, change some policy, then what happens to them? And that's where my motive always is. But it's hard when you get canceled immediately, you know, so that affects my self-esteem pretty much the most right now.


When you're feeling criticized or canceled or you're lacking confidence, are there practices or people that are really helpful for you?


Yeah, the first practice is to not to do what I normally used to do, which was self destruct in some way when I was younger was drugs. Now it's like, what, a full pizza drink. Fourteen beers, you know, like just publicly, you know, because you're sort of drowning yourself in like these unhealthy behaviors. So now it's really about like it's about what I do now. And this is actually speaking from recently. I write down the criticism because I want to honor the criticism I receive.


I want to respect it because I believe that you have to be empathetic when listening to others so you can really understand what they're saying and what they're hearing. And then I write down equally on the other side, sort of like, what did I do in this moment to actually make real change based on the criticism? And so I sort of do this like aligning like, OK, if my criticism is this and this is what you're doing, this is what I did do, those things align.


And when I do that, what it does is it helps me to evaluate my intentions and actions and that helps me to start to build up my self-esteem again. I'm like, OK, you're not a bad person. You are actually doing some good because the criticism is aligning with the direct action you've already done to make things better. And then I talk to people. Part of that vulnerability of I have a small tribe that I have around me. I have this little slogan and I say, I need you to love me a little bit louder.


And it really that's that's the key to know that I'm not feeling that I'm not feeling that good. And even though I'm the strong one, a lot of times I need you to, like, love me a little bit louder. I need you to tell me that I'm OK, that things will work out that I you know, and I think it's important because when you have that that pride that you can trust on top of the self-worth you're doing to remind yourself of like, oh, what you have, those two combined really can just give you that little bit of fuel you need to get through the next day.


And then you recharge again and get to that next day and you keep going. Well, yet again, you've brought me exactly where I wanted to go in terms of questions, because we've spent much of this conversation talking about self-love as an internal thing. But then you just now talked about it as a sort of interpersonal. You brought in the interpersonal aspect and it reminded me of a slogan I've heard from you. Service to others, I believe you've said is a kind of service to yourself.


Can you unpack that?


You know, when I see someone who didn't have or was denied something that was affecting their self-love or self-esteem, and I'm able to use whatever I have to counter that and to give them back what they deserved or get them into a space and seeing the joy on their face, it just immediately fills me with joy. I mean, I believe, you know, there's no such thing as emotional contagion. And I don't think we talk about that enough of like you really do pass on your emotions to other people and we all know it.


And the sort of hokey sense of like, oh, someone's energy is not right. You know, we hear people saying that. But when you really talk about the sense of the actual what it is, emotional contagion, you start to understand that you're a happy smile, you're happy mood will directly affect someone else's happy mood. It's the reason why if I started laughing right now, after about a minute and a half, two minutes, you're going to giggle.


You're going to be like it's the same reason why if you're in a room where everyone's crying after a while, you start to feel the emotion, you start to cry, I think when you could be of service to someone else and you see the joy on their face and you see their mood change, you inadvertently will change your own mood and you will start to feel their self-love, start to rebuild your own self love because you're now on the same page.


And so I do believe in the interpersonal community based on building up your self-esteem. I mean, that statement I said about I need you to love me a little bit louder doesn't just apply to me saying it to other people. I encourage other people to say it to me, because when people say that it's that active, please be in service to me right now because I need you. It's an ability to ask for help in a new way than saying I need help.


It's a clearer way of saying I need love right now. I actually need love right now, and I need love through different supportive avenues. And I know you can provide that for me. And so, yeah, it's important.


And again, there's evidence here being of service can remind you of what is great about yourself. It it's rewarding in the brain as well.


There's just a lot here and it really points to something very, very deep, which is that the line between ourselves and the world is blurry and porous.


So let me stay with New Years. We're heading into a new year.


This is a time of year when people kind of make these resolutions are going to change something about myself. Maybe I'm going to reinvent myself, whatever it is. And I just wonder what your thoughts are around self-love as it pertains to New Year's and New Year's resolutions.


Well, you said at the beginning, I really I'm not a fan of resolution. And I think that sometimes this whole change myself can become very self destructive. I believe that one hundred percent I do believe we all have the ability to grow, to learn more and through growth and learning more, through being compassionate to ourselves, you inadvertently do find yourself becoming a better version of yourself, quote unquote. But I don't like this whole thing of like, I'm going to change this resolution is for me to change, because then you start to get to this place of, like, hating who you are now as you are on that journey to where you want to be, you know, like fitness apps for me, get on my nerves a lot of times because I'm like, you're telling someone to hate the body they're in right now and the body I'm in right now, I got to fall in love with it because it's here.


It's where I am. It doesn't mean that it's where I'm going to always be, but I have to fall in love with it now and appreciate where I am now so that as I am on that journey of growth and change, I can appreciate everybody along that growth. Instead of getting down on myself and saying like, oh, you know what? The body I have right now I hate because if you hate this body, you will hate the body you have in two weeks as well.


And you're going to hate the body you have in four weeks as well. And you're really going to hate your body if you take a break from doing the work that you had set out to do. And I think you start adding this element of like self hate, guilt, all these things that come with when you can't love where you're at now. And so I don't make resolutions, you know, I make I don't make any of those statements at all.


What I do is I say things like and this new year, I'm going to trust myself more. I'm going to become more compassionate to myself. You know, I say a lot of those type of things, but I don't make resolutions and I don't put a marker on. Goal setting, because I think goal setting is a beautiful thing that you can do at any time of the year when you prepare, when you make proper choices and when you know that you can ask for help, resolutions sometimes don't have the clarity of goals.


And so you end up finding yourself, not following through. You end up finding yourself, not doing what it takes, not asking for help. So I would just recommend people make more emotional goals for the New Year versus telling yourself things like, I hate where I am now and I want to try to change it in 12 months. You know what I mean? Like, one of the things not to belabor this, but I tell people this is your journey.


Design it how you want, walk it at the pace you want. Like, don't feel this pressure of like 12 months. Things have to change. And if I get to that 12 month marker and I haven't, that I'm a failure because all you're doing is setting yourself up for not loving who you are and not loving your journey. Be more compassionate with yourself. Be kinder to yourself and love yourself a little bit more as you on that journey and things will work out.


Chromo, I love you on Queer Eye and I love having you on the show, thank you. Thank you, my friend. Big fan of yours. Big thanks to Chromeo, this actually was really fun to meet him if you enjoyed this conversation, you can hear much more from Chromeo as a guest in our New Year's meditation challenge. That's our free 21 day meditation challenge in the 10 percent happier app. It starts Monday, January 4th. And if you're a few days late, that's totally fine.


There's still time you can sign up late and slide right into it. It's all good.


Join the challenge right now for free by downloading the 10 percent happier app wherever you get your apps or by visiting 10 percent dotcom, that's 10 percent all one word spelled out. If you already have the app, just open it up. Follow the instructions to join as a note of reference here. Our next episode is going to drop on Wednesday with Dr. Laurie Santos, who's from Yale and is also the host of the great podcast The Happiness Lab.. She was on the show, our show just a few weeks ago, but she was so good.


We invited her back because we wanted her to talk about the science behind why so many of us get New Year's resolutions so badly wrong and what we can do to get better at it. Spoiler alert, she has seen the data and she, too, is now a proponent for self compassion. So we'll be talking about that. She's just a just a font of practical wisdom. So that's coming up on Wednesday. No episode on Monday like we normally do.


We're going to do this one today with Paramo. And then Wednesday, Dr. Laura Santos, big thanks as always to the team who worked so hard to make this show a reality. Samuel Johns is our senior producer, DJ Cashmeres. Our producer Jules Dodson is our A.P. Our sound designer is Matt Boyington of Ultra Violet Audio. Maria Wartell is our production coordinator. We get an enormous amount of insight and input from our colleagues such as Jan Point, Nate Tobi, Ben Ruben and Liz Levin.


And of course, as always, a big thank you to my ABC News comrade's Ryan Kessler and Josh Cohen. We'll see you all on Wednesday for a fresh episode. Life is full of possibilities. You just need to know where to look now streaming on Disney. Plus is the movie critics are calling peak Pixar, Disney and Pixar. So is visually glorious and a joy to behold. That's. People magazine says it's the best movie of the year, remember to enjoy every minute of a Disney and Pixar social rated PG parental guidance suggested now streaming on Disney plus.