Kc Rossi 0:02
Are you ready to scale your business in a way that's aligned with your soul, and profitable? I'm Kc Rossi, a business and leadership coach. I've been a full time entrepreneur for 30 years and love business. I help conscious leaders increase their impact and optimize their lives. Join me each week for tips and deep conversations on cultivating confidence, increasing your visibility, elevating your vibration, and leading with purpose without burning out. Let's go!
Kc Rossi 0:36
My guest today is Mershon Hargrave. Mershon is a female entrepreneur who was brave enough to create what she was craving. She founded high vibe cowork, which is a virtual community for entrepreneurs and startups, looking for a supportive community. She runs accountability groups and masterminds. And she definitely is an example of putting the growth mindset into action. I hope you get a lot of inspiration from our chat together. Enjoy. Hi, Mershon, welcome to the show.
Mershon Hargrave 1:09
Thanks, Kc. How are you? It's good to be here.
Kc Rossi 1:11
Yeah, it's really great to see you again. As always, and I love to see your smile and just your your vigor and energy for life and learning. I just really love that about you.
Mershon Hargrave 1:22
Oh, you're so sweet. Thank you.
Kc Rossi 1:24
Yeah, absolutely. So I love that you saw a need in the marketplace. And it was something that you actually were craving. And so you decided to create it and it would be awesome if you could share with our listeners more about the birth of high vibe cowork.
Mershon Hargrave 1:42
Sure, yeah. Um, so I was working in sales for a software company. So I was on the phone a lot calling into car dealers. And as many people know, automotive can be especially tapping into the sales side of it was a very male dominated industry. And cold calling and selling can be a little difficult. And it's a grind. And so I was like, oh, you know, I just need some some different energy, I need to be in different rooms that you know, where people are supportive, and how can I help you? And so that's when I first found Rochester Women's Network. And so I joined some meetings like that. And I was like, How do I create more of this, I love being in these rooms. And so I actually started a leaning group around the book Lean in. And we met once a month. There were a group of six of us. And we just took time to both connect with each other and then look at the book and say, How can I apply this to my career? And again, I would leave those meetings just so supported and so seen. And so again, I just continually would ask myself, How do I create more of this because it brings such a positive aspect to my life that I want to do that for others. And then COVID hit, and being in sales, it's very numbers driven, and you'd have to stick to a schedule. And so I said, Okay, I need a space, because I'm not showing up to my desk at the office, where I'm creating my calendar, I need a space where I can sit down and plan out my week and be held accountable for that. And so I reached out to my network, and I said, Hey, I'm opening a Zoom Room for 30 minutes on Monday morning, and 30 minutes on Friday. On Monday, we're going to plan out our week, talk about what our priorities are. And then on Friday, we're gonna get together and say, how'd you do? You know, what did you learn? Let's celebrate together because that's another thing I think that we missed in being with people in person is celebrating even the small victories. And then how are you going to rest and show gratitude through the weekend so that you can fill your cup to then start back at it on Monday morning again. So that's kind of my short story.
Kc Rossi 4:19
I love it. I love it. And I feel that many high achievers are really excellent at the planning stage. So that like Monday morning full of energy ready to go. They're they're, you know, jammin out their to do list but what I love is the book end of that Friday, where you're recapping, you're celebrating you're thinking about how to restore and like you said, fill your cup up. And I think especially as female entrepreneurs and I'm curious about your thoughts on this, we often forget that back end of things, we're just really focused on what's next, and our inbox and all the other things Sit we have to do, do you find that as well?
Mershon Hargrave 5:03
For sure, you know, as, as women entrepreneurs, I think that we're constantly focused on our to do list and, and that's ever evolving and ever growing. And if we don't take the time to sit back and reflect, I do my cohorts and 10 week periods, because it's a really great amount of time, because you can get a lot done in a quarter. And to really reflect on where did I start out this quarter and like, give yourself a pat on the back, because we do that for others so easily. And so well, we just have a hard time doing it for ourselves. And, you know, sometimes we have a week where we don't get to where we want to be. And sometimes the celebrations with my clients on Fridays are, you know what I made it, I made it to today. And that's what I have,
Kc Rossi 5:56
Sometimes are showing up is a success, like continuing to show up, even though you don't have like this great big, celebratory thing, just to be held in that sacred space with your tribe is is powerful and healing.
Mershon Hargrave 6:10
Yeah, yes. Exactly. Exactly. And so yeah, I think it's, it's a really great space to just say, Look what I did, and like what I learned it because, you know, nothing we do in life is a failure, if we can really take lessons out of it so that we can grow, because I like one of the core values that I try to use in my life. And my business is that discomfort creates growth. And so looking back and say did I do, why did I not accomplish everything, but I put too much on my plate, did I prioritize wrong? Did I not hold up my boundaries this week? And so using that as a reflection point to how can I grow and do better next time?
Kc Rossi 6:56
That's awesome. And I have to lift you up at this point, because you really live out this growth mindset. And I wanted to share with you that, you know, in the beginning, I did 100 interviews on the show, just straight interviews. And so then I really decided to shift to podcast swaps as a focus to really have this collaborative spirit of energy and exchange. And I get pitched, often, if not daily, for best to be on the show. And, you know, I send them the message that I'm focused on swaps. And in fact, just yesterday, you know, I received a message that was like, Oh, well, I don't know a podcast. Oh, well. So that was the reply. And yours was very different. It was very indicative of this growth mindset, and also have this option three, philosophy where it's not black or white, it's not yes or no, it's not. I don't have a podcast, you know, like, literally, it was, how else can we collab? And so I'm really curious, is that something that comes instinctual for you? Or was it a skill set that you developed as far as leaning into insight, and really being able to pick up on the core desire of the other person on the other end? I'm really curious.
Mershon Hargrave 8:15
Yeah, what I, what I initially think about is, I was actually the company that I previously worked for, I worked really close with my dad, he started the company. And when he worked in corporate for a long time for almost 20 years, and so I was able to learn a lot from him about how business should work and how to be successful. And he would always look at even though he worked for corporate, and he worked in purchasing, he always wanted to create that collaborative relationship and look at them not as vendors as partners. And so he would always, like when he would have conversations with them, he would say, How can this be a win for both of us? What do you want out of this and really get to the core of what they want, and also being transparent. And this is what I want? And how can we create this synergy, so that we're both benefiting from this relationship? And, you know, we used to always kind of roll our eyes at him and call him like Dr. Phil. And on our 50th birthday, he gave us Seven Habits of Highly Effective teens, and we're like, whatever that is, like teenage girls do. But there's so many lessons from that story that we can take. And synergy is a big one that you know if you can kind of use that as a lens for how you're, you know, collaborating and working with others because, you know, we have to have a little bit of selfishness in what we do and building our business Um, but we have to also always remember that there's a person on the other side that we want, we can we can help. And in helping, you're going to do nothing more than just kind of expand your universe and vibrate at a higher higher frequency.
Kc Rossi 10:18
Yeah, I love that. And I feel like it's such a valuable lesson that if you approach life in that way, you're absolutely going to win. And it's working for you. So this is like a case study in real life. So, thank you. Kudos to you on that. Now. Merchon, it's been said that you are a wizard when it comes to helping with accountability. And I'm wondering, why do you feel accountability is so vital to success?
Mershon Hargrave 10:51
Oh, have you ever read the book? The Four Tendencies by Gretchen Rubin?
Kc Rossi 10:57
Mershon Hargrave 10:59
So it's a fascinating psychology, because it's all about the there's four types of people. And it's hard when I start to talk about like, I'm big into personality tests and the Enneagram and things like that. But like, Don't put me in a box, there's no way that there's only four types of people. And I totally agree, and, but each of them kind of manifest themselves in different ways. And the biggest thing that I get out of things like that is why not work with your brain instead of trying to have your brain work in the way that you think it's supposed to. Because that's what society says. There's, I always say that should is a shame word. And so why can't I get up at 5am and go for a run and do these things like everyone else can, it's like, maybe that's not how your brain is wired. And that's okay. And so one of the types in Gretchen Reubens, four tendencies is the type of person that they're called an obliger. And they will do what they have to do for outside. What's I'm losing the word right now. But it's all about external versus internal. And so if I tell myself, Hey, I'm going to get up at 5am, and I'm going to go for a walk, and then I'm gonna have my breakfast and my coffee. The probability of me doing that, as an obliger, who obliges to others before I obliged, myself is very low. Whereas if I tell you, Hey, Casey, let's meet at the park at 5:30. And we're gonna go for a walk, the probability of me doing that is a lot higher, because the motivation for me, to not let you down is like very, very high versus letting myself down. It's like, well, I'll do it tomorrow, you know, because sleeping just feels so much better. And so that's one of the reasons why I think that accountability, because that's just the way that our brain works without us even realizing it. The other beauty and creating the groups around women entrepreneurs that I have seen is we play a lot of mental gymnastics with ourselves as women entrepreneurs, and the conversations that go on in our head, are just, they're difficult to manage. And when you see other people struggling with the same things that you are doubting themselves, having that impostor syndrome, but also thriving, and shining, when they push through that is so inspiring. And so that's why I really like kind of the group of it is because you're like, if they can do it, then I can tell you, they struggled with that last week, but they pushed through it, and now look where they are. And if I just tell myself fear, I see you, I hear you, but I'm not going to let you drive today and look where I be.
Kc Rossi 14:07
I think it's just it's really powerful. It's extremely powerful. And I am a believer of that as well, where if she can do it, I can do it. And there is this synergy and spark of inspiration that comes from seeing someone and again, you know, we've talked in the past about success not being a linear process, but when you are with a tribe of people who get you who are all striving to bake a bit like to create a better impact to create, you know, more sustainable income. You get to see all the behind the scenes of the jigs and the Jags and the self doubt and everything but like you're talking about the perseverance of seeing the end transformation is really very powerful for people that come in. Now. Did I read correctly that you do daily calls?
Mershon Hargrave 15:00
I do I and they're not all accountability. Tuesdays and Thursdays are like co working. And some people it's funny when they're like, people just show up in a Zoom Room and like, do work together on the road. And I was like, yeah, like, There's something so incredible about community and just saying at the beginning of the co working time, hey, I'm working on my newsletter, or I really need to get out belling but it just keeps getting pushed down my to do list. And we all have hugged zoom, and work for an hour to music. And that the end, Hey, how'd you do with your stuff? Oh, it was just, you know, like, does anyone have a tip on? You know, the best mail or site to use or whatever. And it's just being a safe sounding board for ideas. And one thing that I implemented this past round was a millionaire morning mindset call on Wednesdays, because Mondays and Fridays are very tactical, like, What steps are you going to take forwards? But as you know, we were just talking about a couple of minutes ago is a lot of being an entrepreneurs mindset. And thinking at 50,000 feet. Where do I not? Where do I want to be by Friday? Where do I want to be one year from now? What blocks Am I have having about charging what I'm worth? Why is it so hard for me to put my offer out there? What is really that barrier? Why does this stuff keep falling down my to do list. And so on the morning mindset call on Wednesdays it's we do two journal prompts. And then we have a mantra. And there's kind of a general theme of it, and that at the end, we meditate. And it just leaves you feeling at least for myself and the feedback I've gotten, it just leaves you feeling so refreshed and clear. And some people use it to follow the mantras, or the journal prompts. And some people just kind of do what needs to come out of their brain for that day. But again, it's a safe space for you to just kind of get whatever gunk is going on consciously or subconsciously, because a lot of stuff, once you start, you know, you get a couple minutes into journaling. And you're like, Wow, where did that idea come from?
Kc Rossi 17:38
Yes, absolutely. It sounds amazing, and so needed. And I feel like a couple of things there one, I would venture to even say that mindset is 80% of the game. And so I think it's really valuable that you have baked that in your offering. And then I think the other thing to underscore that I think will be really valuable to the listeners is the fact that our ideal client is truly a reflection of our self. Yeah, and we create what we need. And I feel like, you know, to your point of the imposter syndrome, like when people think who am I to create this, it's like, you're the perfect person. Because even if you're in the thick of it, you're so intimately entwined in the struggle that if you can pull yourself up and out and be that motivator and that educator on how to get to the other side. Not only is it going to be very real people are gonna feel that authenticity. And I, I think that those create the best teachers because they're in it with you. That's like a side by side journey. It's not somebody that 40 years ago, they have this problem. And then ever since then it's just been like Do as I say, I mean, you are really walking the talk.
Mershon Hargrave 18:55
Yeah, yeah. And it's funny that you say that, because that's one of my favorite. When I'm networking. My favorite question to ask is, who is your ideal client? And why I like asking that question is because you get so much knowledge out of how they answer that question. You can die. Like some people dive so deep into how their story started by asking that question. And it's just fascinating what you'll learn because I think you're so right, that you create something for yourself as the ideal client and that's why most people, especially sole purpose and sole lead companies start is because they had a problem. They said, if I am having this problem, others must be to and how can I, you know, fill that gap in the world? And that's not an easy challenge to answer. It's not easy being an entrepreneur, you can you can, there's a lot of people who have ideas and say, wouldn't that be great, but then to actually take action on it is so brave and vulnerable and hard and inspiring. And just, there is nothing like the energy in the room full of women entrepreneurs.
Kc Rossi 20:22
I always say that being an entrepreneur challenges you in ways that most things in life are not going to bring to the surface. I mean, it brings all the things up, which the beauty of that circling back to what you first said in the beginning of the interview, is we get to test ourselves, we get to dig deep, we get to learn about ourselves. And once we do the hard thing, you know, then it really does create this magical, you know, essence in our self like there is a wisdom that can't be undone. And that's, that's pretty cool. Now, is five co work all virtual? Or do you have a hybrid? Or do you plan to do future events in person.
Mershon Hargrave 21:08
So right now, it's all virtual. That was kind of one of the Silver Linings that actually came, I had thought about creating a physical space. And then with COVID, it forced me to do all virtual. And it's been really beautiful seeing people in Toronto connect with people in Texas connect with people in Florida, like, they never would have met unless this was a thing, which sometimes sends me into like an existential crisis. But it's just really, really cool. I actually, quarter two of this year, I'm creating my first Rochester only cohort. So I have my cohorts at six people. And Rochester has been so great for me to network in and I've met so many incredible entrepreneurs. And it's such a vibrant city for women entrepreneurs that I wanted to create a Rochester specific one because I think there are benefits that can come of that I have a lot of artists and create in makers in my cohorts. And so you know, oh, what trade show? Are you doing? What pop up shop? Who do you use for this? And so I'm starting to dabble in what a physical space would look like. I'm actually connected with this woman, Chelsea, who has a physical space called the Hive and Fairport, which is similar to what I was looking to create. And she's done an incredible job. It's so beautiful, like, she's done amazing. So eventually, I think there may be a physical component of it just not, not yet.
Kc Rossi 22:56
I love that I love that your vision is really going back to your own backyard. Because I do think that there is something very special about that. I know, we met through Rochester Women's Network, and I know Roc Girl Gang and Rochester. I mean, they have they have like a cult following. I don't know if they're still active. But like you said, there's a vibrant women's network. How crucial is networking to your business? And what's your favorite way to network?
Mershon Hargrave 23:25
That's a great question. And it's something I have five things that are crucial to my week. Planning. And networking is one of them. So I call it dedicated networking time. And it looks different on a weekly basis. Because sometimes it's meeting with, you know, like my local mentors and having breakfast with them. Sometimes it's meeting one on one with someone new. Sometimes it's big group in person thing, sometimes it's in zoom, sometimes it's educational, sometimes it's more social. But how I actually started was I joined some, it's funny because I joined this group called Toastmasters, which teaches you how to be a good public speaker. And there's different groups that need all over the city. And I would go to them and this is when I was working closely with my dad and he like loved that I was doing it. And so I called him after and he was like, how high vibe was it? And I was like, Oh, it was not high vibe at all. And that's where the name was birthed of kind of my coworkers because I wanted to create a really high vibe place. And so as I mentioned before, I've gone to BNI meetings and those are a little more transactional for me than I wanted to create but I think putting yourself in those spaces of knowing what you don't want, is just great data, what you do want? And so I don't know if I answered your question, but yeah, I tried to network on a weekly basis, and it does look different, based on my season based on who I meet, and kind of what's out there and available.
Kc Rossi 25:22
What I love about that is it's not an afterthought. It sounds like a very dedicated pillar that you're top of mind. Yes, it rotates. Yes, there may be a seasonality. And I really liked that as well, because I think sometimes when we drop into a framework, we can become robotic, and it loses energy. And because you are dedicated to high vibes and elevating vibration, I would assume that energy is important to you as it is me. And so I feel like, it's also a great opportunity to give ourselves permission to let something go for a period of time when we're just not feeling it anymore. And double down when we have that much more enthusiasm and passion and something. So I like that you have a cyclical nature to your networking pillar. That's amazing. Sidenote, your dad sounds awesome. And he sounds like a real role model and somebody that just showed by doing so I really think that's fabulous. I also feel that kind of inspiration with my dad. So it was really neat to hear that from you. I'm really curious, how do you personally keep your vibes high?
Mershon Hargrave 26:34
Hmm. I'm a big podcast listener, I love podcasts, I find them very inspirational. I also subscribe to Notes From the Universe. And so I get this little daily inspiration in my inbox. And I try to keep I try to be very intentional about my social media feeds. And having them be a place where because it's so easy to like scroll and get sucked into it. And so why not get sucked into a space that makes you feel great and makes you feel crushed? And like other you know, same thing that I do with networking groups. I do try to read a lot. I'm more of an audiobook person. I do meditate, but I'm in a season where I haven't been great at it. Yeah, so I think it's just kind of being super intentional about what goes into my ears, what my eyeballs absorb. And, you know, being close to my vision board, you know, that's in that's in close proximity to where I do my work.
Kc Rossi 27:58
So it sounds amazing. I feel that, you know, even if the listeners just walk away with that nugget, it's really crucial. Like we are the architects of our destiny, and whatever we're taking in from our senses, from all five of our senses, is really crafting who we are on a day to day basis. So it's like, are we moving towards that identity that we desire? Or are we moving away from it, and we get to decide, it definitely takes discipline, especially in the social interwebs. I mean, it's very, very easy to fall down multiple rabbit holes, and not only lose time, but I think that can be like chipping away at the core of who we desire to to be. So I think it's really important that you have that I really liked that. I liked that only that you limit what you're taking in or you're being very intentional about your inputs. But also I think the key is being connected to your vision. Like, I really could see that it's almost just an arm's reach away for you to just keep reminding yourself of like, this is my dream. This is who I am. These are the things I desire and I am competent, I'm gonna manifest it. So what a beautiful kind of dynamic duo of what you just mentioned. That's amazing. So on that how can people learn more about you and what you do?
Mershon Hargrave 29:26
Yeah, so I'm pretty active on Instagram. That's probably my most active social media and that's at high vibe co work on Instagram. I do have a website Hi vibe co work.com or send me an email Hi, bud. Co [email protected] I love to set up networking meetings, one on one kind of coffee chats, both in person and virtual. Or having conversations over DMS. I love kind of when we're watching mindless TV at night. I'm sitting there having you know great cup conversations in my DMs. So yeah, that was that's where I'm most active.
Kc Rossi 30:04
Awesome. I'll make sure to drop the links in the show notes. And I feel very lucky because we are in each other's backyard. So I feel like our next chat can actually be an in person face to face opportunity to have a latte together. So that's something to look forward to for me.
Mershon Hargrave 30:22
Awesome. I do have one question for you. What book are you most recommending at the moment?
Kc Rossi 30:31
Ooh, most recommending. I'm going to say Mel Robbins, The High Five Habit. Because I just feel she is a dynamo, one of her her other books, which is The 5-Second Rule really broke me out of my shell and got me to get out of my own way when it came to doing live streams and Facebook Lives. And so I love Mel because she has a scientific research, but she's also ruthless when it comes to implementation. So she is just like, no BS when it comes to great, you know, this nugget of information now go do it. So that's really been very helpful for me. And so yeah, I'm a fan of her work, but I would say her latest book, and the other one that I haven't picked up yet, but that is on my reading list is Bernie Browns newest book, I've been watching a lot of her interviews. And I'm just totally drawn in by the whole idea of learning how to build relationship and connection through understanding emotion and a greater level. And just being really open to that. So I'm a big Brene Brown fan, too. So that one is on my list to get I was gonna do the audiobook, but yesterday I just watched an interview and the gentleman that was interviewing her as he did hit Like so many posted notes in it, and like dog eared in it and he said it was like there was really beautiful illustrations. So I like you also like audiobooks, but that particular one, one, the cover is absolutely stunning. I think I'm gonna need to like hold that book. So I can mark it all up. So yeah, great question. How about you?
Mershon Hargrave 32:13
I'm so I have Atlas of a Heart. And I've started reading it. And it's phenomenal. And I want to mark it up. But it's so pretty. I'm having such a hard time being like, how do I highlight or like underline anything in this book. It's so so good. And actually, so with Mel Robbins, I listened to a podcast with her and Marie Forleo she was on Marie Forleo podcast. And after Mel Robbins first book, she had such a struggle even thinking about writing a second book, and it crushed her because she was like, Who am I like, I'm not an author, like, yeah, I have that book. But like no one wants to hear anything else. For me, I have nothing else. It was such a an eye opener to be like even Mel Robbins, who like we all look at as this dynamo, as you said, like just this powerhouse. And even she, you know, has this brain when when it's just her mind running that says Who Am I? And it just gives me the like, grace to be like, Yeah, I have moments where I say who am I? I have the ability to switch that narrative and say, why not me? Yeah, what's this world missing that I have? You know.
Kc Rossi 33:33
And I think we can learn so much from that realness that it's not about putting on a mask. It's not about perfectionism. It's about really being real. And as soon as, like, I don't know, the exact behind the scenes struggles that she had, but from what she shares where it's like, you know, it seems like it was this premeditated thing that it was about five years later that the second book came out, and that it had a fight in the title. And she goes, people are gonna think that I really worked on that. But it just happened that way. And I think that for me, when I heard that it was it was a real lesson of like, once you trust and you're in the flow, it is going to happen so much more perfectly. Then you crunching it out and staying in your brain trying to come up with this amazing framework that's going to impress people. So so many good things. I feel like we could have a whole nother conversation on inspiring women that have led the way but you know, yeah, certainly coming up on the scene for that. So thank you so much for all that you do for female entrepreneurs, holding them accountable, providing that sacred space and also just showing up as an example of the work. So thank you so much for being a guest on the show.
Mershon Hargrave 34:47
Thank you. Okay, this was really, really great. I feel I feel higher vibrations already. This is so awesome.
Kc Rossi 34:53
Awesome. Wonderful. Well then great. I hope that the listeners do as well and until next time, my friend ... breathe joy.
Kc Rossi 35:00
I hope you enjoyed today's episode with merchon. Doesn't it make you want to just run out and connect with your tribe, or if you don't have one yet to start searching who your community could be? There is so much power in togetherness. I hope you enjoyed. If so you can leave a rating or review at www.lovethepodcast.com/brilliance.
Kc Rossi 35:26
I'm sharing some information that's coming from Megan from the US and she says five stars, "Incredible content! Kc does such a good job covering a variety of topics. The guests offer valuable insight as well. I would recommend this podcast to anyone looking to be inspired and informed." Megan thank you so much. I love those two adjectives inspired and informed because those truly are the qualities that I hope to bring into every single episode. I appreciate you. I appreciate everyone's time for tuning in. I know there is a plethora of information that you could be plugging in to on a daily so thank you for being here.
Kc Rossi 36:09
Again, if you would like to rate and review the show, I would love that you can head on over to www.lovethepodcast.com/brilliance. Thank you!
Transcribed by https://otter.ai