Within just a few weeks of being in Miami, I met an incredible woman who offered to hire me and sponsor my visa. She continued to give me work for over a year, teaching corporate classes on whatever topic she needed her 900+ employees to learn. I would research, then develop the content and hold numerous classes on various topics, such as customer experience, leadership, mindset, motivation and emotional intelligence. I got a great deal of joy from seeing the students learn and make progress, not only in their jobs and positions but also in their lives. This led me to my next venture. I began to turn all of my workshops and class content into online learning. I partnered with my Miami friend Lynn, and we created a successful business in something we are both passionate about — helping others overcome their own obstacles and limiting beliefs. This was by far the best, most exciting and useful thing I have ever done for myself and others.
As a part of our series called “My Life as a TwentySomething Founder”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Julia Bodska.
Speaker. Author. Entrepreneur. Julia Brodska is the owner of two successful businesses and regularly presents her Best Life-ing principles to audiences large and small as she travels the world. She is the living embodiment of a woman who lives her dreams.
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! What is your “backstory”?
After my parents lost everything during Ukraine’s transition to independence, we moved to Sydney, Australia. Later, my father developed severe early-onset dementia. Life was a struggle for my mother as she tried to care for him and my sister and me. At school, I was teased and bullied because I could not speak English very well and we were poor. It got so bad that I dropped out of high school. My life spiraled downward, and I hit bottom when my father died. I got into drugs, heavy partying, and a toxic relationship. Soon, I found myself in over 30k dollars debt, overweight and depressed.
I had a victim mentality and a bad attitude towards the world, but I realized I needed help and so I studied practices that might lift me up. Fortunately, I met insightful mentors who guided me and encouraged my growth. I lost weight, became fit, and got out of debt. I started Juu’s Kitchen in response to people wanting my easy to prepare gourmet dishes that help you lose weight without making you adhere to a bland diet. The success of Juu’s Kitchen inspired me to share the winning strategies I had uncovered on my journey to creating the exciting life of my dreams. My approach is holistic as I describe how to achieve fulfillment in the seven crucial areas of life in my bestselling book Best Life-ing.
Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that happened to you since you started your company? What lessons or takeaways idd you take out of that story?
After I moved to the States, I lived with what I thought was the perfect family. They had a beautiful house. The parents were well-rounded and hard-working. They had four healthy children and two beagles. It didn’t take long for me to realize that even my dream family had problems. They had fights, overreactions, traumas, tantrums, and other issues.
I had spent years wishing for a family like this. I discovered, through this experience, that I sought something that did not exist in reality. Wishing I had a so-called perfect family made me think something was lacking in my life. That not-so-perfect family showed me I was never really missing anything. Sometimes we don’t see the beauty surrounding us because our limited beliefs shade it.
What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
Best Life-ing offers clients all the tools needed to help them create their dream life. My approach is a holistic, enriching system that addresses fulfilment in the seven areas of life. Master the individual elements, and you will tap into your inner strength and virtually limitless opportunities.
By applying my methods, clients identify their current fulfilment level in the seven areas of life to understand where they are at. They will learn how to discover what they want and how to make quicker decisions that are aligned with their goals. This reduces needless complexity so they can remove distractions and create their plan for transformation which awakens their spirit and gives them a new perspective.
The strategies help people unleash their creativity, find their passion, and build the healthy friendships and relationships they yearn for.
Initially, the Best Life-ing principles came from me overcoming my own limiting beliefs, deciding what was really important to me and what I loved. The vision for Best Life-ing is about doing, being in control, overcoming obstacles and fears, living your dreams, and challenging your beliefs to create fulfillment in what I call the 7 areas of life.
Five years ago, I wrote in my dream book (The Happiness Project): find my happy, help others find it sooner, write a book, start a company that inspires and motivates others, travel the world. And I have done just that.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
I always like to say, “We all need other people to achieve success, no one is self-made.”
Bernard was my friend, mentor and boss, whom I’d known for nearly a decade and he was someone who truly believed in me, even when I didn’t, and he always encouraged me.
When I had a mental breakdown, it was in front of Bernard. And while I can look at the experience as positive now, it was terrible and embarrassing at the time. I was bawling uncontrollably and spilling negative emotions about myself and how I felt like such a big failure. And Bernard just listened and then gave me the most powerful pep talk, so to speak, I have ever had. He said, “Julia, you have created this mess and you can also fix this mess if you really want to.”
At the time I had this fear that the grass MAY NOT be greener on the other side, and this kept me stationary. I felt like I had something to lose, even though I was completely unhappy with where I was, and the situation I had created for myself.
I think because it was Bernard who told me this, and he was someone I trusted and respected, that is why I took his advice to heart and connected with what he was saying.
Bernard helped me lay out my issues, and he was very straightforward. Even though I didn’t want to hear it, I needed it, and he helped me every step of the way. Of course, I still had my limiting beliefs and made excuses for why I wasn’t living my version of success, but Bernard wasn’t having any of it. He said, “If you want to fix your messed-up life, it’s going to take work.”
I guess this made me realize I didn’t have much of a choice. It was either stay where I am and be unhappy or do something about it — regardless of what the conditions were. From that point on, everything started to change.
Are you working on any exciting projects now?
We are expanding our reach to corporate clients and individuals alike, and have just launched our daily February Challenge to help keep our clients on track for their New Year’s resolutions.
How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?
I believe that with help everyone can live their dreams. The more people that achieve success, fulfillment, and happiness in their lives, the better off the world will be. My strategies are holistic, covering the seven crucial areas of life including financial, social, physical, relational, intellectual, vocational, and spiritual. Growth in these areas tends to inspire people to be of service to others.
If we are in a place of high vibration and positivity, we naturally want to help people grow and succeed. I wholeheartedly believe that the only way to fix this world is to find what we love, master it, then share it in the service of others. Then everyone benefits.
Creating this movement would reduce anger, cynicism, and the whole victim concept.
People would understand that their experiences are in their control, they would take responsibility for their lives and they would have compassion towards others.
Do you have a favorite book that made a deep impact on your life? Can you share a story?
Eckhart Tolle, an inspiring spiritual leader, has touched me through his books and teachings in many ways. In one of his seminars, he described that people tend to believe that a relationship is 50/50, but it is not. If a relationship were 50/50, then of course I always do the 50% that is right, and you would always do the 50% that is wrong and annoying. This is why all relationships require 100/100 effort to be harmonious.
Can you share 5 of the most difficult and most rewarding parts of being a “TwentySomething founder”. Please share an example or story for each
- It was the ultimate reward for me to share my fresh, healthy gourmet meals with people who want to lose weight, feel happier and be healthier, because I know how hard it can be. It was very important to me to help people lose weight without making them adhere to a strict and bland diet. I believe life should be joyful! It is our job to find what makes it that way for ourselves and then share these lessons with others. You can still eat delicious food that compliments a busy lifestyle, controls your weight and doesn’t break the budget. Being food conscious does not need to consume your life, because you can make eating healthy an enriching habit.
- At one point, I pondered what I truly wanted. Between my job and juggling the meal prep business, I had completely burned myself out. And although Juu’s Kitchen was an incredible experience and very much an important part of my growth process, if I were honest, it was never really my dream. In fact, after a year, the only thing I enjoyed about Juu’s Kitchen was that it helped people achieve their health goals. Once I had a few weekends of chopping 40+ pounds of green beans for four hours straight, my passion for cooking disappeared. It felt like a job. This realization was the final thing I needed to move forward — to fully appreciate that life was too short not to chase a dream. And since I was now convinced that anything is possible, I began to dig deeper.
- If I could achieve anything I could ever imagine, knowing that I couldn’t fail, what would that be? Pondering that, two long term dreams popped into my head almost immediately. I wanted to finish writing my book and live in Miami. Previously, I would have let my fears stop me. But not this time. I believed that no matter what happened, I would be okay. That question is incredibly important: what is the worst that can happen? I could fail and then be forced to come home to Australia (not terrible), start again, get another nine-to-five or start another business. I might get stuck out there and run out of money. But is that really the worst? No, the worst thing that could happen is never knowing what could have been.
- Within just a few weeks of being in Miami, I met an incredible woman who offered to hire me and sponsor my visa. She continued to give me work for over a year, teaching corporate classes on whatever topic she needed her 900+ employees to learn. I would research, then develop the content and hold numerous classes on various topics, such as customer experience, leadership, mindset, motivation and emotional intelligence. I got a great deal of joy from seeing the students learn and make progress, not only in their jobs and positions but also in their lives. This led me to my next venture. I began to turn all of my workshops and class content into online learning. I partnered with my Miami friend Lynn, and we created a successful business in something we are both passionate about — helping others overcome their own obstacles and limiting beliefs. This was by far the best, most exciting and useful thing I have ever done for myself and others.
- All the years working at McDonald’s (which was so frowned upon) developed my work ethic. It gave me the skills to run my meal prep business and the confidence to get started. It inspired me to believe that anything is possible, which led me to seek personal growth.
What are the main takeaways that you would advise a twenty year old who is looking to found a business?
Finding alignment and inner stillness are top priorities. When I quiet my mind, I can focus on each task in front of me without the mental chatter about how hard it would be, or the risks and my fears of failure. Once I get centered, it becomes much easier to handle my tasks.
I’ve been able to catch up on things that I’ve wanted to do, begin passion projects and get some much-needed rest by learning how to better delegate in my business. And best of all, seeing the unbelievable kindness from my friends, family and even strangers, who have helped me run my business has been uplifting.
Search for value in what you do. See how it links to your future vocation. For example, I once had an office job where I had to use Excel spreadsheets, which were unstimulating, to say the least. But linking this tedious task to how it could assist me in my dream later on, made it agreeable. Excel is essential in my businesses today. I’m glad I put in the effort to master the application. This mindset can apply to any tedious task. Link the task to your dream, and you will find more satisfaction in doing it.
Healthy habits drive a successful business. My daily routines have created good habits. I now read books, exercise regularly, eat clean, and make time for meditation. I never expected that these small changes would make such a difference, and the opportunities that would become available to me once I aligned my actions with my dreams.
We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might see this. 🙂
Esther Hicks who wrote “The Law of Attraction” with her husband Abraham Hicks. This book is about taking accountability and control of your life. What you have manifested today is a reflection of your thoughts and can be altered at any moment. Their teachings have had a profound impact on me.
What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?
Instagram: @thejuushow, @bestlife.ing
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!