I am not the boss, the clients are. You build your business off of the desires of your clients. Building out my course was based on the feedback of my community and not solely what I wanted to do. Nobody wanted to learn mindset through yoga, but they love hearing about mindset from a luxury angle.
As part of my series about young people who are making an important social impact”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jaylissa Lea.
Jaylissa Lea’s mission is to build brands that leave a legacy and create a movement that will better serve the world. Through the lens of business and psychology, she helps entrepreneurs rebrand and set the highest standards for themselves so that they aren’t just simply “existing”, but are acknowledged and respected by showing people what they are truly capable of. She has a background in clinical psychology, academic research and luxury management which allows her to create premium, timeless strategies to redefine modern luxury and mindset.
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit. Can you tell us a bit how you grew up?
I was born in Shenzhen, China, into a family of entrepreneurs. I was blessed to have plenty of resources and was celebrated because I was the first grandchild of my family which is very important in Chinese culture, but then one day out of nowhere, my father passed away. And in response, my grandparents took everything away from my mother and I out of fear that my mom would remarry and take their son’s wealth. This threw our lives into disarray, gossip, drama, bullying, and caused us to immigrate to the United States to escape.
I restarted my life in the US and had to brush up on my English. It was still hard to escape the bullying though being so different than everyone else. The one thing I was always confident in though was my ability to adapt and keep my head up. My mother on the other hand kept a very tight leash on me out of fear and trauma, and I didn’t truly feel free until I turned 18. I had to beg a doctor to help me because I was in such an unhealthy place.
After I received the help I needed, my mindset completely shifted. I got into UC Berkeley with a full scholarship and graduated with the highest honor, all why working multiple jobs and and participating in various organizations. Studying clinical psychology made me realize they were just slapping bandaids on problems instead of teaching people how to conquer them. So I took a year off. This was right at the beginning of the pandemic and when my life changed!
Is there a particular book or organization that made a significant impact on you growing up? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?
The Mastery of Love by Dawn Mcgill- It was all about freedom and being in charge of your emotions, and how those emotions don’t define us. Studying at Berkeley always gave me imposter syndrome, like I didn’t belong there since I barely graduated from highschool. It taught me that there is always someone to look up to or compare yourself with, and we just have to accept that. It also taught me how to network and be very resourceful because there was no hand holding there.
How do you define “Making A Difference”? Can you explain what you mean or give an example?
For me, making a difference means to make an impact in someone’s life, even if it’s only one person. It’s enough for me if I can make a single person feel better or worthy. Making people feel seen and heard is so important to me because I grew up completely shunned, and I came to realize that we don’t need validation from others. We shouldn’t allow others to define our value because everything we need, we can obtain ourselves. We don’t need to wait for someone else’s approval.
Ok super. Let’s now jump to the main part of our interview. You are currently leading an organization that aims to make a social impact. Can you tell us a bit about what you and your organization are trying to change in our world today?
Society tends to attach value to materials, and what we don’t realize is that the real luxuries are the things we can’t buy. Time, health, peace….Due to mass production and globalization, we have an unlimited amount of goods to consume. Especially after covid, people began realizing how important health is, compared to a fancy car that we can’t even drive because everything is closed. This past year really put things into perspective, and placed a greater importance on how we treat and care for others. I want to help people realize that luxury is just a perception and objects don’t have any meaning unless we give it meaning.
Can you tell us the backstory about what inspired you to originally feel passionate about this cause?
Being brought up in a billionaire family where everyone was still miserable, I’ve seen first hand how money can’t buy what’s truly important to us. After basically being thrown out from that family and restarting from nothing, it took me years to find my own happiness. Everyone has their own definition of happiness, and that’s what I help people define through the lens of luxury. Treat yourself like a luxury brand, because you shouldn’t rely on anyone, even family to do it for you.
Many of us have ideas, dreams, and passions, but never manifest it. They don’t get up and just do it. But you did. Was there an “Aha Moment” that made you decide that you were actually going to step up and do it? What was that final trigger?
The aha moment occurred while I was mindset coaching. I came to the conclusion that people didn’t really care about mindset. They didn’t think they needed it, but they were coming to me with inquiries about how I started my business. Still wanting to focus on mindset though, I rebranded as a luxury brand strategist. It’s really just mindset coaching in disguise. I help people create a lifestyle and persona that best defines them and aligns with their goals and values. People want to show up in front of others in the best way possible, but the first step of this is working on their mindset. When I realized people weren’t interested in my passion, I redefined it into something people were familiar and interested in. Luxury Branding.
Many young people don’t know the steps to take to start a new organization. But you did. What are some of the things or steps you took to get your project started?
Just do it. Make commitments and challenge yourself every day. Believe whatever you’re doing will come back to you tenfold. But keep in mind that there is sacrifice involved. Other people might not see your vision yet, but like I mentioned before, believe in yourself and don’t rely on others to believe in you. Don’t let other peoples’ doubts seep into you, especially your families’.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company or organization?
Most people get stuck thinking they know what their business needs, more ads, better marketing strategy, a sales coach….. but at the end of the day, all of those things start with branding. It’s amazing to see that shift of focusing on one aspect of your business, to realizing that the branding foundation will cover all those different areas. Everything is built from that strong foundation of your values, mission, and passion.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson or take away you learned from that?
I was definitely thinking that starting a business would be super easy and that I’d be living the high life traveling, but really I just locked myself in a dungeon to figure everything out by myself. I also realized that so many people who appear high profile, are not who they say they are at all. Social media allows us to appear however we want, and most people don’t show off the dark side.
None of us can be successful without some help along the way. Did you have mentors or cheerleaders who helped you to succeed? Can you tell us a story about their influence?
Once I fully committed to creating this modern luxury movement, I instantly attracted all the right people who saw my vision and helped me bring it to life.
– Emi Hockett-My manager
-Tim Storey ( Oprah Winfrey, Quincy Jones, Robert Downey Jr’s life coach)
-Glenn Lundy who gave me a platform on Club House to share my vision and attract more people like Yosef Martin (Boxy Charm’s CEO) , Mark Jenkins (celebrity trainer), and too many to name
Without saying specific names, can you tell us a story about a particular individual who was impacted or helped by your cause?
After my speaking events or Club House rooms, I have people reaching out to me left and right saying how they finally realize what their worth is and the steps they can be taking to have a more luxury mindset. And this can happen in the span of 30 minutes to an hour.
Are there three things the community/society/politicians can do to help you address the root of the problem you are trying to solve?
The root problem is lack of self love, and people are seeking manufactured happiness, because society supports that. We’ve been taught to believe that money is happiness, and you’re more accepted or treated better when you have nice things. This is instilled in us basically from birth. Focus more on self care because selfcare isn’t selfish.
-Businesses can focus more on providing happiness, not materials. Help people create memories and experiences. Humanize your brand. Support your clients journey
-The education system can implement meditation and yoga classes in school so children understand how to deal with their own emotions. Normalize counseling for all students. Teach more life skills in school, make it more applicable and less theoretical.
-Make use of influencer culture to promote things that actually matter. More people need to use the voice they have to move the needle forwards, not backwards. Adopt a top down mindset. If the voices at the top start focusing more on impact over material, everyone else will follow because that’s how society is; we follow in the footsteps of people we look up to.
Fantastic. Here is the main question of the interview. What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why? (Please share a story or example for each).
- I am not the boss, the clients are. You build your business off of the desires of your clients. Building out my course was based on the feedback of my community and not solely what I wanted to do. Nobody wanted to learn mindset through yoga, but they love hearing about mindset from a luxury angle.
- Being an entrepreneur isn’t about how skilled you are, but how skilled you are at juggling things and managing every aspect of your business when starting out. You have to wear so many different hats until you’re comfortable outsourcing or team building. I was doing everything from design, websites, HR, social media, PR, lead gen, emails, and the list goes on…
- Self doubt is very real-so many people fail in their first year of business because they give up right before their breakthrough. Persistence and self belief are the most important things you can have. My family initially doubted my choices thinking it was an excuse not to finish my PHD, because they didn’t see the results of my work. Having supportive people around you during the unstable beginnings of your business is so important.
- You need to block out all the noise and stay in your lane, focus on your vision and don’t get shiny object syndrome-So many people are telling me about network marketing, crypto, NFTs, memberships-It’s so important to know when to stop consuming and focus on implementing.
- Entrepreneurs are like a sponge. Constantly learning but not applying-I have bought more courses, books, podcasts, and coaching programs because I love learning. But more knowledge doesn’t mean anything unless you’re implementing it.
If you could tell other young people one thing about why they should consider making a positive impact on our environment or society, like you, what would you tell them?
If you died today, what is the legacy that you would leave behind? We can take up space, or we can make an impact on people’s lives. If you’re reaching your hands out, are they facing up or down? Are we giving or taking? I would want them to think about these questions.
Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would like to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂
Oprah Winfrey- What to say, I really admire her versatility. Once I googled her profession, and was so overwhelmed with everything she has done and all the different hats she wears. I would love to learn more about how she manages that and what she enjoys the most.
How can our readers follow you online?
My handles are consistent across all platforms!
Club House- Jaylissa Lea
This was very meaningful, thank you so much. We wish you only continued success on your great work!