My guest is Sky Cowans. Sky is a video creator who delves into the world of wellness, spirituality, and alternative lifestyles on her YouTube channel, Sky Life. (138K subs) Her curiosity leads her on a journey of discovery and she shares her findings through her documentary-style videos. Join us as we dive into Sky's story and learn about the valuable insights she has gained on her journey.
We talked about:
1:01 Life of a professional seeker
3:19 How Sky cultivates gratitude and positivity in the midst of challenges
10:06 The art and process of creating meaningful content
15:33 Reflecting on the unexpected turns and breakthroughs in Sky's journey
24:18 The intentionality and serendipity behind Sky's path as a video creator
26:08 What sets Sky's videos apart from others
30:45 The factors that influence Sky's video creation process
33:58 The key elements of a successful video for Sky
45:16 The unexpected personal transformations that come with being a professional seeker
47:08 Encouragement for those hesitant to embrace change
51:33 The value of learning from mistakes and growth in video creation
53:56 The evolution of Sky's content and personal growth as a creator
56:19 The connection and vulnerability in being the main subject of one's own art
58:45 The importance of authenticity in storytelling
62:19 Sky's connection and relationship with her audience
65:12 The meaning and significance of a "true fan"
67:34 The journey of building a dedicated fanbase
74:08 The distinctions between curating experiences and storytelling
76:51 The integration of transformative experiences into daily life
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[00:00:00] CK: I'm really excited to have my next guest with me. This is sky Cohen. She is a professional creator on YouTube who documents her experiments of wellness, spirituality, alternative lifestyle. Her mission is to inspire people to move from judgment to curiosity. If you like her, search her on YouTube for sky life.
Welcome to noble warrior sky. Woo.
[00:00:22] Sky: I'm so excited to be here. So this is live. People are watching this live. That's right. That's right. Oh, wow.
[00:00:28] CK: The pressure right now. We're going on? Uh, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook. Um, where else? LinkedIn? Wait, this is so cool. Yeah, let's
[00:00:39] Sky: go. Let's go live an
[00:00:41] CK: action. So before we started this conversation, we had just talked about what it takes to actually, you know what, before we go there, I'm curious about the symbols on your, uh, banner, a hummingbird and a butterfly.
Tell me about that. Is it just [00:01:00] pure aesthetics or is there a symbolism behind it?
[00:01:03] Sky: Great question nobody's ever asked me about that. So they are symbols that represent my grandmothers actually on both sides who have passed hummingbird on, um, for. My dad's mom and the butterfly is my mom's mom. And mm-hmm, they're just representations of the angels that are always with me.
So yeah, I just like those symbols and I didn't really know what to make my banner and I was just playing around and can fun. And I was like, oh, this is perfect.
[00:01:40] CK: Yeah. Well, I mean, butterfly is a symbol of transformation and I don't know if you know this hummingbird, it's also a symbol of transformation, especially in the plant medicine circles.
You know that. Yeah.
[00:01:52] Sky: So I did know some of the symbolism, um, which I also think is very fitting for what I'm doing on my [00:02:00] channel. So yeah. They mean many things.
[00:02:04] CK: Mm-hmm, , mm-hmm well, you're, from my perspective, a professional seeker, you know, you're living the dream life of going from transformation experience to transformation experience.
Mm-hmm and you're sharing. Your experience in a public way, such that other can learn from you. So in many ways you're living the dream of many seekers. What, what do you have to say about that regarding the professional life of being a seeker?
[00:02:32] Sky: Wow. Yeah, I guess that is what I do. A professional seeker. I like that.
Um, well, I didn't really plan to do that, but that's just what it's become. So yeah, I mean, first and foremost, I just love storytelling. I love that art form and I also do have this deep desire and [00:03:00] curiosity to learn about life and. To dive into all of the mystery within this experience. And that really started in exploring the physical body and how to optimize physical wellbeing.
And then it went down this path of spiritual wellbeing and how to really understand the soul and like what, what we're doing here. And what's beyond, um, just this physical reality and a, and so throughout doing my YouTube channel, it's really just been a pursuit of my curiosity. And then that's turned into, I, I guess, being a professional seeker and it's really cool that you are saying you're kind of living the dream.
I'm like, I kind of am right now, but I don't always think about that because we can get so wrapped up in. all the challenges that come with everything in life mm-hmm . And part of, [00:04:00] part of the process is actually accepting all of it. And, um, and then coming back to gratitude for just the experience, the experience and the process, and falling in love with the process and not the destination.
[00:04:17] CK: Okay. So the reason why I even brought it up the professional seeker side, you didn't say this. I said it, yeah. Is in your YouTube trailer, you had shared very briefly of how grateful you are. Yeah. Living surrounding yourself with people that you love experiencing these once in a lifetime adventures and how just, you don't know how to articulate it, but just how grateful you are.
Right. Um, and this is what you do. right. So how do you. Put yourself in that space of gratitude versus getting into the day to day logistics or not finding the right location or the right lighting, like little things like that and just be in gratitude.
[00:04:58] Sky: Yeah. Okay. [00:05:00] So it's definitely the easiest when I'm in the experience.
even though when there's production happening, there's always things that, that come up that go wrong that you have to problem solve. But I, I like that. I think it's pretty fun. Uh, I just spent a lot of time editing a video. And so in that process, I'm less grateful maybe. Yep. Um, even though I love editing, it's, uh, an art form that I love, I just have done it so much.
And so often, and being behind a screen for an extended amount of time is not something I think most human beings are actually used to mm-hmm so, but, but getting into gratitude for me actually has been a learned skill in a way, because I definitely had a period of time in my life where I felt pretty depressed, pretty lost, pretty, uh, stressed.
And it was actually through learning gratitude practice. They started to tap into that. [00:06:00] And I do think that. With, when it comes to how we want to feel, it's pretty similar to the practice of, of working out. For example, if we want our physical body to feel good, then we need to do certain things consistently.
If we want our mental state to be well, then we have to do certain things consistently. And so I think, um, that's something that I actively practice is mental health and, and gratitude is a huge part of that. Um, and then when I'm going on these adventures, it is very easy to tap into those states because there is just so much fun to be had.
And it is so exciting.
[00:06:44] CK: Mm-hmm well, I, I don't wanna dwell on this, but this is important. Cause from my perspective, you are living a dream cuz you are going from peak experience from two peak experience. . Yeah. And, and by contrast the [00:07:00] video editing seems very mundane, right? Just by, based on contrast. So, so therefore, I, I think it's even more important to cultivate, you know, here's the ordinary moment I'm freaking staring at whatever software you use to edit this epic story that just made is as mundane as it gets.
Oh my God, this is make, you know, exporting for the third time he fails or whatever, the little thing that happens. So then how in those micro moments, how do you bring back gratitude during the mundane moments like that?
[00:07:36] Sky: Yeah, so really it comes down to actually being excited about the challenge, because if life was easy, it wouldn't actually be fun.
So I think. when it comes to all the little challenges that come up or even in mundane challenges, that there's a [00:08:00] level of, of excitement that you can bring to it. Um, that is treating things like a game. I think gamifying life can be really fun to play with because we don't really know what is happening here.
So might as well have fun with it. And I think that's a realization I, I sort of had in the last six months, like life is kind of like a game and what makes games fun? Well, that there's actually challenge involved and we have to problem solve and figure things out. So if you can fall in love with that part of it, then it's easier to be grateful, even when things aren't going your way.
[00:08:47] CK: So I'm gonna push you a little bit if you don't mind. Sure. So, so life is a game. It's an overall concept. Love it in the middle of editing. It's frustrating. Like [00:09:00] I'm gonna do this 500 times cuz I, I edit as well. So I have a little bit of empathy understanding that Uhhuh. Huh? Right. So that, so that in that moment of frustration or, or among, you know, Autum perhaps what do you say to yourself?
Oh, this is a game I'm gonna get X, you know, experience points from that. Or like what do you do in those moments? I'm zooming in that, in those moments. Yeah.
[00:09:26] Sky: There's nothing to fix. There's nothing to do. Uhhuh. It's totally cool to experience frustration and experience, whatever you're experiencing. Mm-hmm I think the more you can completely accept what you're experiencing.
Mm-hmm realizing that as human beings, that's just part of who we are. I think then when you start to fully accept it, then it doesn't have so much weight. Cuz if there's resistance, I mean, there's always gonna be some level of resistance, but it's [00:10:00] in the resisting that I think there is a lot more buildup of stress that's created.
And when you just let things pass through, like I'm totally fine with like yelling or like punching a pillow if I need to in the process
[00:10:19] CK: of editing. Good, good, good. Okay, good. Great. So what I'm hearing is there's a level of surrendering cuz when it comes to video creation, editing is a part of it.
There's no finished product without editing. So editing comes with the territory. There is the payoff, but then there is the quote unquote cost. So you, so you've surrendered to that, to this profession that you've chosen. Is that accurate reflection? .
[00:10:45] Sky: Yeah. And with anything you do, there's always gonna be trade offs.
There's always gonna be parts of it that you may not be as excited about. Even though the editing thing is like, it's just been a, [00:11:00] such a journey because that's something I've even been outsourcing in a way, but I'm still doing it. Like I'm not totally to the point where I have somebody editing all my videos.
It just hasn't happened in that way yet. And so, um, like, but it's a something I love. Like it's like artists who maybe are working on a specific piece of art for a long time. And then they're looking at it so much and they're like, oh my God, I can't look at this anymore. But like, they're still in love with the process of creating video creation is an art form in and of itself.
And I, I think that creation of any kind, if you're doing any creative work. It's pretty much like the process of giving birth, not , uh, there's nothing that compared to giving birth. I think that's the ultimate creation process that exists here in this earthly realm. But think about when you're creating a piece of, of art, like the ideation [00:12:00] phase, um, is, is exciting.
And usually it's full of lots of ideas. And then when you start getting into the nitty gritty, it starts to get a lot more like pressure. And it's like a birth canal where you're like trying to push this idea through this like tight space. And there's so many things that build up and so much pressure builds up and you're like, ah, and then it, when it's done and created, it's like, ah, so rewarding and exciting and fulfilling.
And so I've just accepted that, you know, when I'm making a video, it's like I'm giving birth every time. So it's not always gonna be comfort.
[00:12:42] CK: Mm, I like that. Uh, I don't think I've ever used the, I mean, I get the metaphor and this is actually what, because everything that we see in the world is started with an idea in the mind before we manifest into 3d reality.
So there is that process, [00:13:00] but I would never go into the graphical details of like, you know, birth canal and pressure and all that. And I think that's very fitting. Thank you for that.
[00:13:08] Sky: I love it. Yeah, for sure. That just came to me one day when I was like completely done with this, I was, I was making a video and I think I just had that epiphany, like, oh, I'm giving birth to this idea and it's okay.
That it's not comfortable in this moment.
[00:13:24] CK: It's normal. Mm. Um, okay. So let me, let me ask you this question. There are two schools of thought when it comes to pursuit one's passion. One school of thought is Derek receiver says. Hey, separate your passion in your work, what you do for money, because you don't want to collude them.
That's one school. I thought another school I thought is Joseph Campbell. When I follow your bliss, if you combine your passion in your work, then you never have to work again in your life. Mm-hmm . So what are your thoughts around those two schools of thought? [00:14:00]
[00:14:01] Sky: Hmm, well, I definitely combined my passion and what I do for work.
That's just the way that I desire to live right now, but I think it's gonna be different for everybody and there's no right or wrong. I mean, personally, I would like to live my life where every day I spend doing something I enjoy and I love, and that I'm passionate and excited about, but there's nothing wrong with wanting to spend a portion of your.
Life in your day, doing something that makes you a living to then spend your nights and your weekends for yourself. There's nothing wrong with that. It's just two different paths and two different ways to experience life. So I think it's up to the individual to decide what they want to do there. Yeah.
[00:14:52] CK: So what, what I'm hearing you say that was a very diplomatic answer.
I appreciate that. Uh, it's how I feel. Yeah. Yeah. But as at this stage in your life [00:15:00] for you is definitely more combining of the passion and work right now. Yeah,
[00:15:04] Sky: definitely. Um, but you have to have boundaries too, I think for sure, like that's important. I mean maybe, maybe not for me, I have to have boundaries.
Mm-hmm around things that I do just for myself that I don't document that I spend time completely disconnected from technology. And then I have a mu a lot of my life that I do document, and it just depends on. The situation, but I think boundaries are important, um, in general with anything. Um, but I have also like had the fantasy of like, well, maybe it would be easier if I just was like working a job that I enjoyed, but it wasn't like my deepest passion, but it's like, oh, I enjoy this job.
I'm gonna work nine to five. And then I have the nights and the weekends for [00:16:00] me, and it's totally separate. And that seems kind of nice. That seems like simple and like a really nice way to live. Cuz when you start combining your passion and what you do for work, like it could be really emotionally intense.
Mm-hmm mm-hmm that's and that's definitely the case for the videos that I make. Cuz there's like deep, um, healing processes that I document mm-hmm and it can get super emotional and then that's just like, generally can be intense. Overall.
[00:16:32] CK: Yeah. I mean, going through a transformational process is difficult enough.
Uh, and now you're professionalizing and now you're doing it in public effectively. Right. Uh, it's very admirable. I appreciate the courage or I appreciate the generosity that you have to make your process public. So, um, what, what are some of the [00:17:00] surprises when it comes to, you know, making your own transformational process public surprises?
[00:17:08] Sky: Hmm. Yeah.
[00:17:09] CK: Um, like a happy accident, right. Hey, I never thought, you know, by doing this in public, I would have gotten this benefit or something like that.
[00:17:19] Sky: Yeah. Right. Um, well, I think the biggest thing that has been happening is that I, I feel. Less crazy. because people, when I post something that I think I'm concerned, if people are going to think this is absolutely nuts, I am always completely pleasantly surprised at the overwhelming amount of response I get where people deeply resonate and feel like they can relate.
And they feel like, wow, I've seen this comment a lot, um, or message to me a lot is, oh my gosh, I [00:18:00] went through something so similar. I feel so not alone here. Thank you for sharing this. Or this created such an awakening within me. And I didn't know I needed this, or I didn't know that this video would help me awaken in a new way.
So that happens all the time and then it makes it like really helps. Me understand that this is it, it helps bring me back to why I do this and why I make these videos in the first place. Mm. Um, is for that purpose. But sometimes like there have been videos that I, I like, oh God. So I really wanna post to see on the internet.
And then I'm always so surprised at how deeply people connect with them.
[00:18:47] CK: Do you mind Ize that a little bit? What's, what's one video that you really just struggle to, you know, before a lot of anxiety before you hit post Uhhuh. [00:19:00] Uh, what's one example
[00:19:01] Sky: of that. So I did a video going, I wanted to explore, so I've been really interested in the topic of extraterrestrials, aliens, life elsewhere, UFOs, and I had done some videos about it, and then I had done some.
Research, you know, on this topic, but, um, there's this one woman who I made a video about who basically claims that she sort of really connects with this one star system of aliens. Right. And so going into it, I'm super skeptical. Um, but I'm really curious. And her as a person, like aside from the alien thinks she's extremely magnetic and just like, wow, what is going on with this girl?
She looks like an alien. Like, there's something that I need to understand about this person. I just had this [00:20:00] deep curiosity about her. And this is like a part of what she does is she channels this thing called light language. And it's a language that's beyond. Um, it's beyond human language. It's like you're channeling the codes of your soul through sounds.
Um, and she specifically has connections. She says with, uh, The extraterrestrial group called Arturians or whatever. I, I don't know all the like different groups and species of aliens, but she, she, you know, talks about this openly. So I went into it just really wanting to understand like who she is and really skeptical, but also really curious.
And when I go into these videos, that's like a big thing is how do I keep an open mind? Like, it's okay to be skeptical. It's okay to have judgment, but how can I start keeping an open mind and shifting that into curiosity to get the most outta the experience mm-hmm . Cause if you go into experience with, and you have walls up, [00:21:00] like, what are you gonna learn?
Mm-hmm I mean, you're gonna come out the same way that you went in, like, oh, I mean, so that's a big, big part of, of the videos that I create. And so , I went into this, not knowing what we were gonna do. She's like very vague about what she wanted to do with me. And she basically set up this whole like healing portal where she did a sound bath, and then she wanted to help me start channeling light language mm-hmm
And I was like, there's no way I've never done this before. I, how, how am I gonna channel this weird cosmic language? And it's completely not what I thought it was, first of all, but the way she describes it is it's like you're allowing, you're getting out of the analytical mind. So that's hence why we do like sound bath, deep meditation.
You're in like a [00:22:00] channel, um, container to do this practice. And people only see like a tiny clip of the videos, but usually these sessions are, you know, they're at least over an hour long. We were in there for like two hours and then you're, it's getting edited down to like a tiny part. But anyways, um, So I'm just like, okay, I'm gonna be open, I guess, to doing this.
And the way she describes it is light language is that you are clearing away the analytical mind. You're just putting that aside. You're entering into the sacred, safe container to allow sound, to move through you in a way that is deeply connected to your soul and to a higher life form of expression. Um, and so anyways, I did not expect anything to happen during this, but I just let myself kind of like, go with it.
And then this, like all this sound I, at first it was [00:23:00] stuck. You can see in the video, I was like, like I couldn't get it out. And then it was just a word vomit of this weird language I've never spoke before. And it was the most healing experience where I felt like I finally could express. what I was feeling on the deepest way, in a way I've never been able to express before in that language.
Yes. Mm. And we were having a whole conversation, her in her language, me and my language. And we completely understood what each other was saying and on like such a deep level. And it was so beautiful and so emotional and it brought me to tears. Like I was having a full throat, chakra healing in a way mm-hmm and it looks like absolutely crazy.
Um, so, but that's what happened. And so I always wanna share like the truth of what happened. So I was terrified to post that video and because I talked even talked to her, [00:24:00] Heather, her name's Heather, she, her, um, channel is activation vibration. And I was talking to her before being like, I don't know if I can do this.
And she helped support me to have the courage actually post it.
[00:24:15] CK: And then when I, how, how did she do that? How did she do that?
[00:24:20] Sky: I can't even remember. She was like, this was a while ago, probably like a year ago. Sure. She was just, she just, she was like, you're gonna be so surprised at like the response and, and how much people need this.
Mm-hmm and it was just like a trust thing. Mm-hmm and she just has a way she's like such a mystical being, um, yeah, she's incredible. So anyways, I post the video and then believe it or not, I have all these people being like, oh my God, like this was, has been happening to me. And I haven't told anybody and I was so scared to share this, but I had something similar or, oh my goodness, like this [00:25:00] brought me, I have no idea what this is about, but it made, it brought me to tears and this feels so resonant in my soul.
And I feel like I need to experience this. And I've had so many people like deeply emotional. About this video, just sharing their experience with me and how much they could relate and resonate to it. And, and that was not what I was expecting at all. Mm-hmm so then it just reminds me, okay, like this is, there's something bigger happening here.
There's like a higher power channeling through all of us right now to help us remember truth. And this is part of what you're doing with your channel. So just trust it. Mm. Even when it feels completely insane
[00:25:45] CK: yeah, it's extraordinary. Right? I would, I would use the word extraordinary, you know, it, this is like, um, out of the ordinary phenomenon and, and you are a evangelist, you know, you're a skill storyteller [00:26:00] that put a highlight on those extraordinary moments as a way to educate as a way to inform as a way to, you know, empower people.
They empathize, whatever that is. So what a beautiful thing you do well, thank you. Yeah,
[00:26:16] Sky: just, just doing it, just showing up, just following the, the curiosity, as I say.
[00:26:22] CK: Yeah. The way I see it is you're also healing people by proxy, you know, by highlighting your own story, your own healing journey. That's, that's kind of how I see it.
How's that? Did you ever set out to do that or that was just accidental? Uh, pretty
[00:26:39] Sky: accidental . Mm. Yeah. Well, to an extent, because as I mentioned, when I started, I really did have this desire to share information about health and wellbeing and empower and educate and inspire people to [00:27:00] understand, um, health and wellness so that they could feel good in their bodies.
And it was, but it was so much more. Like scientific. And I would read all this scientific literature and interview experts about, um, different health and wellness trends and modalities mm-hmm . And so I actually guess there was an intention for healing, but it wasn't the way that I'm doing it now, where it expands so much bigger.
Mm-hmm uh, and it's like a much deeper spiritual mm-hmm , uh, exploration than, than just like okay. Health and health and wellness. Yeah. It's yeah, that was accidental because it just led me there.
[00:27:48] CK: Yeah. So, so tell us about that. Cuz that requires a level of faith. It requires a level of openness mm-hmm right.
To go onto the adventure [00:28:00] because you didn't set out to do that and, but you somehow trusted. You hire yourself, intuition, the, the, the dharmic path, whatever you call this. Right. And now you're here. So tell us a little bit about the journey go going from scientific research and data driven approach to where you are today.
Cuz it seems quite, um, but different,
[00:28:25] Sky: right? Oh, I think I just got bored. that's that's really what it comes out. Move away from
[00:28:33] CK: bored and move towards curiosity. Yeah. In a nutshell, that's that's your philosophy.
[00:28:38] Sky: It really just comes down to what is exciting and interesting to me Uhhuh and when I get bored, I need to do something crazier.
I'm just like, I just wanna know like what's going on here. Mm what's. Behind this store. Um, so when I CA kept coming to the same conclusion about these wellness modalities, it was like, okay, I would [00:29:00] try out something. like, uh, medicinal mushrooms, which are amazing, like all of the healing mushrooms and then make a video about it, or like some type of diet trend.
And I would give my honest opinion on it. Right. And it was the same, same thing. Every time was like, okay, there's some like good research here. Maybe we need more. Maybe, you know, there's this double blind placebo control clinical trial that set tells us this, but it's, we probably need more studies. Like we always can use more research.
And it's amazing. Like, research is incredible and inform so much, but I just got bored of that. And I was like, ah, but like what's all the stuff that's like that we don't have any research on that people are doing and why, why are they doing it? Like, mm. You know what I mean? All these ancient modalities that like, we don't really have a lot of science on, but like, people are still doing them thousands of years later.
Mm-hmm, why. And [00:30:00] so let me go try it. And then in our society, we kind of like dismiss that stuff, but I mean, I'm just too curious not to go explore what's going on there.
[00:30:13] CK: I mean, this echoes my own journey. Hence why I'm particularly curious about your story. I think there's some parallel in, in our profession, I guess, professional career, I came from the background of an academic researcher.
You know, I have a PhD in bioengineering. We, we did all kinds of scientific based studies and that was my mindset at the time. If it's not measurable, if there's no data or peer review, then, you know, whatever mm-hmm . And then I just slowly over time. Now, here I am, you know, doing plant medicine, work, talk a lot about spirituality.
We we talk in consciousness, uh, these type of modalities, uh, where there isn't necessarily peer review scientific journals, [00:31:00] but here I am. Right. So hence why your story is particularly, uh, interesting to me. Mm mm-hmm
[00:31:08] Sky: wow. That is, that is really interesting. Especially since you have like a, an actual PhD I mean, I said an actual yes.
I, I, yeah, an actual PhD, I'm just like researching stuff out of my own desire to learn, but, um, I always find that really fascinating how, yeah. There's I think when it comes down to it, like there's something within all of us that desires to understand the deeper meaning of life and why we're here and what we're doing.
And it could be so overwhelming that I think it's easy to just shut it out and. It's more convenient to just not really wanna go there. Cuz then you open up a com a whole can of worms and it's like a wild world where you start [00:32:00] exploring consciousness and what could possibly be happening. Um, but that's, I, I don't, I don't desire any other way to live at this point.
I'm like, oh, I might as well explore since this is happening. Mm-hmm
[00:32:14] CK: mm-hmm so how much data do you look at or is it more just pure subjective experience these days less about the consensus reality rather than just a subjective reality?
[00:32:28] Sky: No, I definitely like to look at at scientific literature still, depending on what the topic is.
Mm-hmm , um, I love researching. Mm. But yeah, it just depends on whatever I'm exploring in the video. Like I did recently, uh, ketamine therapy. And there's some amazing research on that for PTSD and depression. And so if it exists, I wanna look at it. But some of this stuff, like, I don't wanna not do a video just because we don't have science on [00:33:00] science on it.
You know what I mean? Mm-hmm, like the light language thing. Like, I don't think we have much scientific literature on that, but I, that doesn't mean I don't wanna go try it. Yeah. So,
[00:33:11] CK: yeah. So what determines what videos you wanna make someone tells you like, Hey, this is really cool. Transformational, modality, dark room therapy or whatever you're calling.
I know you did that recently, right? Like you're like, Ooh, I want try it. Or is it more like a theme of like, Hey, in this stage of my life, I'm looking for healing and whatever right. Gut health or something. So I'm gonna lean more towards that. Is there, how do you pick and choose what, what to do
[00:33:40] Sky: next? Right, right.
It really is just what I. Wanna try professional seeker . Yeah, exactly. But I mean, there is a big level of like strategy YouTube strategy that also comes into it.
[00:33:56] CK: Okay. So tell us more about that.
[00:33:58] Sky: Yeah, no, I mean, I [00:34:00] definitely have I think about title and thumbnail. I think about if the video has, if I've seen other videos where it's performed well, mm-hmm , um, mm-hmm, mm-hmm or not, maybe it's like an untapped subject.
That doesn't mean it's not a good video to make, but if there's something that is, I, I don't see the potential for like a strong video. I maybe I'll do it on my own, but I'm not gonna like, make a video about.
[00:34:28] CK: I see, so pause. So it would curiosity. And then also with the side view or the business view of, you know, how it's gonna perform on YouTube.
And if, if you, if you are personally interested, but there's not a business reason, then you, you make a less production version of it for yourself, right. To journal about yourself. But if there is, then you add more, you know, time and production values behind it to, for the public. Is that an accurate reflection?
[00:34:59] Sky: So [00:35:00] I would say if it's something I I'm either gonna make an amazing video or none at all. So if it's something that I'm curious about, but I don't know if it would make a great video, I'll just do it on my own wi and I won't document it. I see. Um, but then if I think it can make a great video, then I'll go all in on the experience and making a great video about it.
[00:35:21] CK: Yeah. So if you don't mind, let's dive into that, you know, as a storyteller. What makes a great video or not?
[00:35:30] Sky: So for me, I, I mean, I think it comes down to first and foremost, the hero's journey is something we all connect with. Mm-hmm so if I'm looking at a video, I have to think, is there enough of a hero's journey here to happen where like, I can make something that will resonate with people, but I can't ever predict what's gonna happen.
So that's kind of, that's tough. Like you can't predict, and I don't try and [00:36:00] script things before I have to go what actually happens. But for example, the darkness going into a dark room retreat, where I would say in the dark for a week mm-hmm , that is definitely a hero's journey in and of itself. Just the whole process.
And there's gonna be a powerful story to share from that, no matter what happens most likely. So I can kind of. Guess that there's gonna be something of value that would make an amazing video. And it's right now, I mean, people are talking about it. So it's a trending topic in the spiritual need. Mm-hmm so that's definitely a good, good video for me to make.
Um, but then I also think about characters. Like I I'm very character driven. I love characters. So that's a whole other way to look at a video. What's
[00:36:50] CK: that? What does that
[00:36:50] Sky: mean? Um, so I do videos with some amazing human beings that are just completely, uh, eclectic characters, kind [00:37:00] of living outside the, the box and mark be their own drum.
And I love doing videos about specific people, um, that are these characters that I can, I can tell their stories. So that's another way that I look at what would make a good video. Like it's the video. With a woman who's um, is grandmother, who's been barefoot for 12 years. She doesn't wear shoes. I saw that.
And the thing is sharing her mission on connecting people back to the earth, through their bare feet. And she is super into earthing and she is such a character. So she made an amazing video and that video performs so well. And I just love hanging out with these people because I feel like I learned so much from human beings that are just such yeah.
Like what would life be without these people that are just doing something different? Um, I did a video with a man who, who is a breath area. He does neat food. He sound like I saw that too fast. [00:38:00] And I had my own questions about that. I was like, I don't even know, like, is he actually doing this? I wanna answer that question.
And that's another thing is if there's a good question going into the video, like a core question, then I think that that makes a good story. so it could be a number of different things, but those are like a couple of the top things that I'll look at.
[00:38:21] CK: Mm. So character hero's journey and question. Yes.
What's uh, thank you for that. By the way. I, I, I love that. Huh. Is, as you're speaking about the darkness, the dark room experience, what also came to mind is what is the primal response? If the primal response is fear, cuz when you mention about seven days in a dark room yep. That's the first thing that comes to mind.
Oh shit. You know, I'm gonna freaked out. Right. Some kind of a thing. Right, right. Yeah. So, so if it's a primal response is a high peak experience. [00:39:00] Then to me that's a signal like, oh, there there's a story there somehow.
[00:39:05] Sky: Definitely. That's like I did, um, extreme cold training with whim. H
[00:39:11] CK: that's I saw that that's the number one training video.
[00:39:15] Sky: Mm-hmm so that's a good example because it's very primal response. Like I could die.
[00:39:21] CK: mm-hmm mm-hmm mm-hmm
[00:39:24] Sky: we're all just trying to avoid death,
[00:39:26] CK: seek pleasure death. Okay. So, alright, so, so let's follow that trend that, that thought, you know, for, for a moment, what about, you know, doing a thing about sauna or doing a thing about extremely constricted space or, yeah, I don't know.
Bright light or
[00:39:43] Sky: something. Yeah. I did, uh, six hours in a float tank Uhhuh. Never, ever will. I, I will never do that again.
[00:39:52] CK: Okay. So tell us about that. Why, why, why wouldn't you do it again? Oh,
[00:39:56] Sky: it was just so uncomfortable. [00:40:00] painfully uncomfortable and it's like, you're for, for me, at least you're in and out of these weird dreams and creepy out of body experiences and.
I mean, we also took some lucid dreaming herbs. We didn't take anything psychedelic, but I did it with these two other, um, this guy and this girl who work at the ocean lab in Austin mm-hmm and they did it with me. And the, actually one of them was having such intense out of body experiences. She had to get out after like two and a half hours.
And then me and this guy stayed in overnight six hours and it was just so uncomfortable. And then I learned after that the legal limit is three hours. I didn't know. completely surpassed that. I, I, I, yeah, I just had an idea to like, I, I had done floating a couple times and, and that's an example where I was like, trying to [00:41:00] figure out how to make it more of an exciting video concept.
Mm-hmm because every, like there's so many videos about sensory deprivation tanks and float tanks. I was like, well, what would be an interesting twist? Mm-hmm let's go in overnight. let's push the envelope. I do not recommend it. yeah, but I recommend floating for sure, for like the normal amount of time.
That's beautiful. But six hours too long for me.
[00:41:27] CK: Yeah. So I did it for two hours Uhhuh and, and yeah, it was, um, it didn't resonate. Let me just put it that way. it? Wasn't something that I'm like, yeah, let's go float again. It's it's definitely not. And I'm, I'm a seeker, right? I'm a very committed seeker, so right.
That's something that's, uh, that's not for me, so, okay. So let me ask you this follow up question. As, as someone who is a professional seeker, who's always looking to also to experience it, but also think about it to push the [00:42:00] envelope bit for the performance aspect of it. Yeah. How do you balance your authenticity versus just.
That's 10 X, this thing as a way to push the edge.
[00:42:12] Sky: Yeah. You know what I mean? Uh, yeah. I mean, I, I don't think it's not authentic to push the envelope because it's kind of something that I want to do anyways, is like find a way to push the envelope, just to see what my body can handle. So I don't think it's necessarily inauthentic, but sure.
Um, yeah, I get what you're asking, but that the, I mean, if you look at YouTube and if, if I wanna have a successful career on that platform, like you have to also look at how the game's being played there and like figure out how you fit in and how to still align your, your mission. Like, how can I align my mission with my videos with also what this platform wants?
[00:43:00] Mm-hmm, , that's part of the fun of it is like finding out the strategy. Um, because also how you like the, the other thing to consider is when it comes to, um, why are, why is somebody gonna watch this? Like the whole goal is to get people to watch. And, and then from there they have an experience that could open their minds, but if they don't click, they don't watch mm-hmm you gotta be thinking about that for sure.
[00:43:30] CK: Right. So what is your mental model about that? I mean, I get what you're saying, right? The culture of YouTube is let's make it as wacky as possible to get the attention, right. This is my impression. This is not your words, my words, right. right. To capture the attention. So they would do all these crazy stunts as a way to capture that attention.
So how so? Hence the, the dilemma in my mind of staying true, right? Our mission, which is [00:44:00] inspired people to. Pursuit a life of curiosity and adventure and wholeness, but you need to first capture their attention. Hence the question mm-hmm what do you think about when you do that?
[00:44:15] Sky: Well, I don't really think I'm not doing things like that.
The, these YouTubers are, are doing, I'm not doing like Mr. B style videos. That's not my lane. Yeah. But I'm using like little tiny bits of maybe some of that stuff. Yeah. To merge it, merge it with the topics that I'm doing. But I don't really do anything that extreme, like the six hour flow tank was extreme.
Yeah. Whim H was extreme, but that that's like an authentic experience that people go to have mm-hmm in general. Um, like he does training like that for people. I mean, the one we did was separately extreme, but, um, yeah. I mean, again, I do come back to the storytelling and cuz if it's not gonna challenge me, then I don't [00:45:00] think.
it's not, I'll just do it on my own again, I'm not gonna make a video, but it has to challenge me in some way. Mm-hmm, like I already done a float tank for an hour and a half making a video, but a float tank is not gonna be exciting. Mm. So what would challenge me? I see,
[00:45:19] CK: I like that six hours. got it. Got it.
So, okay. So if I'm hearing you right, is, uh, what would challenge me, but not so much that I never want to do it again.
[00:45:32] Sky: Yeah. I mean, that made me never wanna do it again, but I didn't know that going in. But for example, like I did a video where I was blindfolded for 24 hours, cuz I had already made a video about this, um, circus group mm-hmm um, I wanted to do a new angle and I wanted to try circus arts blindfolded.
So cuz that would be exciting challenge. So I just blindfolded myself for, you know, as a ritual. so, [00:46:00] yeah, it's just finding little ways to, to explore something new and just push the boundary for myself, which I think is I kind of think about it that way. Does that make
[00:46:10] CK: sense? It does. Mm-hmm so in my mind for me, and this sounds like for you as well, being public is being a transformational path.
I never actually expected that. Right. But being a professional quote, unquote professional podcaster, you know, video producer is helping me, um, be more authentic mm-hmm helping me embracing my voice, helping me telling my truth right. In a public way. So I'm curious to know your perspective, how has being a professional seeker changed who you are that you never expected?
[00:46:49] Sky: I love that. I mean, I have a similar experience. I feel that I've been able to unlock a deeper level of my authentic expression. Through doing this. [00:47:00] Mm. And with every video, I just get more and more comfortable being a hundred percent myself and being able to unleash that part of me. Mm-hmm that wants to ex express just for the sake of expressing mm-hmm
And I have definitely had that experience. I feel like I'm much more able to speak from my heart, speak in truth and share from that space. And when I first started, it was not that way at all. I was like so uncomfortable and I had a hard time being myself, uh, in general, not just on camera, but like in life mm-hmm mm-hmm and I, I feel so grateful that that's been a, a huge by byproduct of mm-hmm doing this career and taking this path mm-hmm and now I'm able to.
Yeah, just be more myself than ever.
[00:47:59] CK: [00:48:00] Mm-hmm . Mm. So what would you say to the younger guys listening right now? Who is saying to herself or himself? Wherever right. Watching this mm-hmm that? Oh, what they portray this freedom of full self expression. Sounds awesome. Mm-hmm but I'd never be able to do that.
This is not for me. Right? I'm an introvert. I'm shy, whatever stories they tell themselves, or like I'm a professional. I gotta be this certain way. I could never do that in public. What would you say to that person listening right now?
[00:48:36] Sky: Hmm. I would say, okay. It that's cool. If you wanna stay that way, like, it's your choice.
That's okay. You wanna stay introverted? You wanna stay the way you are then. Great. If you have a desire in you there's any part of you in you that has a, a. Any type of desire to unleash [00:49:00] yourself and express, then you absolutely can do it. And it is, uh, a skill like anything else mm-hmm anything can be learned with consistency in practice and mm-hmm it just takes baby steps.
Mm-hmm and then you'll maybe go a little bit too far and then you're like, okay, recalibrate, recalibrate.
[00:49:21] CK: not maybe, probably, yeah. most likely
[00:49:24] Sky: it's okay. We all look
[00:49:26] CK: through that. That's right. Such is life. The, the beauty of it. So as someone who is a professional seeker, we aren't gonna keep using that term.
Right. Who cultivated is courage, muscle over time. Mm-hmm you now you take really bold risks, uh, of sharing and being open and sharing. Talk about that a bit. What would you say to again, the person listening. What's a, a, a baby step, a micro step, a nano step that they can take to exercise their courage, to lean into [00:50:00] their discomfort.
[00:50:03] Sky: Hm
mm-hmm okay. So I would say that following excitement is really a good, is a good place to start because with excitement, there's usually some level of fear mm-hmm so you don't have to jump right to like the thing you're most afraid of mm-hmm . But if you start with something that excites you that maybe like scares you a little bit, that's a really good place to start, and I would choose one action to take, just do it.
do it. That's all. That's all I have.
[00:50:43] CK: yeah. Um, so, so I'm learning Portuguese and gemba right now. Okay. So I recently came across, uh, language learning guru mm-hmm and then he articulated his framework of how to what's the fastest way to [00:51:00] learn language and then be able to converse with a native speaker for 15 minutes.
Okay. He said the way to do that is not learning the vocabularies or a grammar or sentence structures or anything like that. How do you learn to converse for 15 minutes as quickly as possible is by having conversations as quickly as possible? Mm mm-hmm that's it sounds really simple, but ultimately, I, I believe that's the secret to life, right?
Whether it's starting a video or starting a business, you the fastest way to start doing something like that is just you, you do it and you learn it on the go. Absolutely. Absolutely. would you, do you agree on the path to being a professional storyteller is by telling stories?
[00:51:52] Sky: Yes, I totally agree. That's I mean, the example of language is great because [00:52:00] I took language in a traditional public high school and I couldn't speak any French by the time I was just here in high school.
I, I, it was terrible. I'm like, how are they? What is going on here? Like, there's something that's not making sense in the way that they're teaching this mm-hmm . And I absolutely believe learn by doing is the key. You have to just dive in and do it and figure it out. And so that's the case with making videos.
Like when people ask me how to get started on YouTube, I'm like make videos and post them, just go do it and learn as you go. You'll figure it out, but it takes reps. Anything just takes reps in practice.
[00:52:41] CK: Mm. So actually on that note real quick, let's talk about your journey as a video creator. Cuz for me, in the beginning part, I had to overcome my own fear of, you know, inadequacy or whatever on skillfulness mm-hmm to even make videos.
And then I, [00:53:00] at some point I get comfortable and then it's about volume mm-hmm and these days I think about quality mm-hmm right. Do you think that's an evolution or can they skip all that and just go directly to quality from day one?
[00:53:16] Sky: Mm, I don't know. I think you gotta make some bad stuff before you start good stuff.
I made some pretty bad videos for a long time. Okay.
[00:53:26] CK: Yeah. And, and, okay, so let's rites of passage okay, good. Okay. So you agree. So let me ask you this. Do you. Keep your best stuff or you, you know, I took now all my best stuff
[00:53:40] Sky: cause I personally, I can't access my YouTube channel with my videos from high school.
So they're out there. I can't get into the account.
[00:53:50] CK: okay, great. So if I, you know, Google's sky Cohen, uh, you probably
[00:53:56] Sky: find them. I had a, yeah. I had a talk show in high school [00:54:00] and with my friends, cat Uhhuh, and, um, they're terrible and hilarious Uhhuh and they exist on the internet because I, I don't know how to get them down.
[00:54:11] CK: okay. Okay. So let me ask you this. When you watch your younger self doing this, the natural reaction is cringing now for me, right? For me, I look at my youngest stuff. I'm like, oh my gosh, you know,
[00:54:25] Sky: I still cringe at myself now.
[00:54:29] CK: okay, good. So how do you react to that? Do you bring compassion to a younger self?
Do you bring gratitude? Do you bring generosity? How do you just like, be a little bit more compassionate about the things that you make in the public way? That's a good
[00:54:46] Sky: question. Honestly. I'm like, whatever that's whatever, like I just totally dismiss it. Like, ah, it is what its moving on. Moving on. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
[00:55:00] CK: Onwards. Okay. Okay. Hmm. Okay. Um, do, because you talked to other creators as well, I'm assuming this is not a uncommon response to stuff they made earlier. How do other people creators? The, the, the, the, the, um, oh, what's the word I'm looking. More seasoned creators deal with their younger creations.
Same thing. I think some,
[00:55:32] Sky: well, I think some of the best creators that I have talked to and listened to, they only see the past as learning experience. Mm-hmm and they're really not focused on that. They're focused on how can I make the best video now? Mm-hmm what's next? How can I make this next video? The best it can be and just take all the learning, but they don't really think they're dwelling on that.
[00:55:57] CK: Mm-hmm mm-hmm mm-hmm okay. Got it. [00:56:00] And, and regarding how you relate to your art, which is video throughput, um, do you see it as I'm here to serve my audience? That's one way to look at it or do you see it as HAMD I'm just journaling my life. So this is my journal, but in a public way, mm-hmm or do you see it as like a highly produced thing that CR that portrays a, a, a, a avatar, an archetype, that guy in the video is not you, right.
Kind like Beyonce and, and, uh, Sasha fears as an example, it's, it's an aspect of her, but that's not who she is kind of a thing. So how do you relate to the artwork that you make given that you're in the main character in your art?
[00:56:47] Sky: Yeah, I think it's all of those things combined. Hmm. Because first and foremost, a hundred percent, I am serving the audience because [00:57:00] there would be no video without the viewer.
and I have an amazing community. I deeply connect with them. I have a discord with them. I'm talking to them. We do calls. Like I'm like friends with a lot of the people that watch my content. But then beyond that, like, I'm making the video for. Someone on the other end to view it and then be impacted by it.
Mm-hmm and whatever their experience is, is not up to me to decide, but I'm gonna do my best to share something that's honest. And then let them honestly decide how they receive it. So that's definitely a huge part of it. And then of course, it's, I think first and foremost, like before we can serve anyone, we have to serve ourselves mm-hmm and this is a process for me that is deeply fulfilling.
So I am absolutely serving myself and fulfilling my desires through creating these videos. And then it's a reciprocal relationship with the audience where they get to [00:58:00] receive what I've received and we get to exchange energy in that way. And then I'm definitely myself in videos, but there is an level of there's an archetype involved.
That's just likes to have fun. It's just, mm-hmm, a character that is me. , but I get to decide in that video, like how do I wanna be and express myself and, and I can have a honest experience of expression, but it's gonna be dependent on where I'm at in my life and what day I'm having. And mm-hmm and how I wanna show up and the video based on the topic or the person I'm interviewing.
So there's definitely a level of character and archetype that comes into.
[00:58:44] CK: Mm. Do you mind double clicking on that a little bit, because the question of being authentic, your authentic voice comes up a lot, especially in a public persona, like, like yourself, you know, be more authentic is what people usually say, but be [00:59:00] authenticity is contextual.
It depends on where you are, the, the day, the environment that the subject, whoever you interact with. So, so I think it's worthwhile to double click on the art of being authentic of, of being that archetypal energy. in the art form that you create. I
[00:59:18] Sky: like that double click mm-hmm okay. So, Hmm. I think for me, it really is a practice of honesty.
How radically honest can I be? And that's not always comfortable. Um, and there's so many, like things that are involved in how we express, honestly. Um, so that's a big part of it. And again, I think it's just it now for me, it's, I'm comfortable with having a camera following me doing something or me vlogging it, cuz I've done it so many times.
Mm-hmm but in the [01:00:00] beginning it is not normal to be kind of documenting mm-hmm and experience, or it's not normal to have a camera on you or to be vlogging it's. So then you get used to that camera, just being a witness. Mm. And the more that you get used to it, the more honest and authentic you can be and show up and express.
Mm. And there is a level of, okay, I'm, I'm, I'm creating a video and I'm presenting something and I am, I'm going to show up with maybe more energy or in like a different way than I would if I'm just sitting on the couch, talking to my friend, like there's a, there's always going to be a slight difference.
Mm-hmm but doesn't mean it's an authentic again, cuz it's just a different
[01:00:48] CK: experience. Yeah, no, I appreciate you saying that. I, I agree a hundred percent mm-hmm I think part of it is the, the, the NA the nature of this question [01:01:00] is how do we authentically be a part of ourself versus a projection of what we want the world to see?
And to me that's yep. You know, very nuanced and very delicate cuz you know, in when the camera is on I'm a little bit louder. right. I en see a little bit more, right. I'm a little bit more energized versus, you know, Kmar is off than I'm just speak normal. Maybe I mumble a little bit who knows right, right.
So, um, and, and when you think about a role or, or a character to your audience, is it like a friend? Is it like a guru? Is it like a big sister or a little sister? What do you think about a professional shaman? Like what do you, what are you, who are you when you're yeah. Your relationship to your audience?
[01:01:52] Sky: God. I am a guru. I'm just kidding.
[01:01:57] CK: Some people present themselves as a switch. Right. [01:02:00] So guru is such a, you know, Tony Robbins. Right, right, right. Level, you
[01:02:04] Sky: know? Yeah. I think a full blown, uh, cult leader. yeah, I'm kidding. I'm kidding. Um, no, we always joke. I, I make so many cult jokes because in the spiritual community, it is a definite thing that goes on.
Um, but I think it's really dependent. Again, it's whoever is receiving the content. They're gonna decide what relationship cuz they're receiving it. And then it's when I get into, for example, in my community discord or on calls with people, or like we're jamming on an idea. I get ideas from my community all the time.
It's more of a friendship, I think, than anything because these are people that I've. Would probably be friends with in real life that I am a lot of them now friends with in real life. Like I just did a video where I went on an adventure with one of my subscribers who I've been I've known for over a year on the [01:03:00] internet, but we go on this adventure together.
And this is something that, an idea that he brought to me, it's an idea. I kind of had it. It was an event. It was the rainbow family gathering. And I've been wanting to do it for a couple of years, but he came to me saying, it's the 50th anniversary. I wanna go. I've been wanting to go for 30 years. Let's go.
He's 71, such a legend. Oh wow. OG hippie. That's awesome. He's like unbelievable person. O
[01:03:23] CK: G hippie. That should be a t-shirt there OG hippie. I
[01:03:26] Sky: know. Right. And he was in OSHA's cult back in the day, like he has that's awesome. Crazy stories. So he wanted to go. He brought me the idea and we made it happen and we went and it was so fun.
And this man is just like a sweetheart and now a dear friend, and I've done other videos. I'm trying to think, like, I haven't done a ton with subscribers, but like I've done definitely other videos where I'm meeting people and like bringing them into the adventures. And these are humans that I am now actually friends with at, oh yeah.
At unleash. Like there was a [01:04:00] whole group of people from my community there and we all were partying together, sober, partying. It was a sober, um, experience and it was so fun. Um, but yeah, like they're like, they're. That's the way I, the relationship that I would say, but then there is a boundary, like you can't be friends with like thousands of people.
[01:04:21] CK: okay. So, so, okay. So let's talk about that for a moment, right. Because right. I'm assuming you may, do you have, have you heard thousand two fans by Kevin Kelly? Yes. Yes. Okay, great. So 1,002 fans, and the way you describe him sounds like a true fan to me. Mm-hmm would you say so, right? What's your definition of a true fan by the way?
[01:04:42] Sky: Um, true fan, I mean, I think true fan is they're excited about pretty much most things that you create and they wanna be involved mm-hmm and support however they
[01:04:54] CK: can. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Awesome. So, so for someone, again, [01:05:00] speaking to the younger sky who mm-hmm , you know, is a little insecure about her creation, who isn't sure about, uh, whether or not this stuff she creates would resonate with people.
This is super young. Yeah. What would you say to her now that you have a community of true fans who just loves everything that you put out who wants to travel with you? Who wants to party with you? Who wants to, you know, heed the recommendation of sky's adventures? What would you say to that guy who is unsure about, you know, her, her possible true friend, you know, base?
[01:05:40] Sky: I would just tell her to really trust herself because it will lead to really supporting a lot of people and the same way they wanna hang out with me. I wanna hang out with them. These people are so cool. Rich was in OSHA's cult. Are you kidding me? I'm like, I wanna hang out with you. Let's go on an adventure.
they're so fun. All of these, the people that watch my videos are like up, [01:06:00] like they're, they're people that I would be friends with in real life that now it's evolved to that in some capacity. Right. So, um, I would just tell her, like, trust. Trust yourself, trust your expression, trust what you're doing, because it will lead to really impacting people.
And that's what I've seen. And it's the biggest gift because that's really what it comes down to is why I keep going is because of how people have been impacted by the videos. It's it blows my mind, like to see the actual, tangible changes in people's lives that they'll share with me. It's crazy. And then the community is so beyond me, it's not like me, I'm the leader and it's it, it has to exist only with me leading.
Like it's not that at all, because the community itself is it's on taking on its a life of its own and they're all supporting each other and I don't even need to be there and they're supporting each other. It's [01:07:00] beautiful.
[01:07:00] CK: Mm. So let's talk about that journey from no fan to lots of true fans. Okay. Mm-hmm uh, knowing what you know today.
when would you start the discord, the Patreon, the, you know, the, the, the energetic exchange of paying you money or, you know, things like that, or, you know, getting a sponsor, knowing what you know today, what would you advise the younger sky on when to turn on what?
[01:07:29] Sky: I think that I, I am happy with how I did it.
Mm-hmm cause I did it in timing that I didn't feel like I rushed it. The discord really was something that, I mean, I could have done that earlier because I didn't realize how much it would actually impact people and it was so called for and needed, but I think it was in really good timing. Everything happens.
And I would say that O like, what I've done is really listen to the [01:08:00] community and what they want. So only do things when you know that that's what your, your audience, your true fans, your community actually desires. And then deliver on that. Um, listen to them, like I have a understanding of what they want mm-hmm so I'm doing my first
[01:08:17] CK: routine.
How did you do that? How did you know what they want again? Talk them okay. Hold on, though. Hold on. You make it sound obvious, but that, you know, think it, think about the younger skies, right? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah's a beginner creator is not so obvious. So, so, so break down those pivotal moments, those ahas for the younger sky.
[01:08:39] Sky: Okay. So we'll first let's start with, you're pretty much asking me when to start monetizing what you're doing, right?
[01:08:46] CK: Yeah. That's one way to say it. Yeah. ITD, I guess, creating a offerings. Understand retainer. Exactly. Yeah.
[01:08:53] Sky: Just for example, the discords completely free, but picture on brand partnerships you asked about, [01:09:00] so the first.
Thing that I did, I guess, you know, I was making money a little bit with ad sense on YouTube, but it was like barely enough. And I was doing this on the side for two years. So it was getting really challenging to keep things going. I'm like, I either have to do this full time or like, I can't keep going
And so I knew I wanted to do it full-time and I think the first brand partnership, um, I was a way to start monetizing and I had enough of an audience then. So I think as soon as you can, um, only doing brand partnerships that are aligned is so important. Like I would never do something I say no to a ton of brand deals.
Um, and it has to be something that I genuinely align with, but when it comes to the other offerings, like the energetic exchange with the community is really what you're, you're asking me about. Yeah. And listening to them and what they want. [01:10:00] So, I mean, I think when you're starting, it's so important to be listening to the comments section and responding to comments and especially on YouTube, that's a big way that you'll start to understand them.
So in the first day or so of posting, I would always respond to all the comments and talk to people and just really be listening to what they like, what they don't like. And
[01:10:27] CK: so when you started posting video one, you already had people commenting right away.
[01:10:33] Sky: I mean, there wasn't that much. Maybe there was actually one person this is so funny.
Cuz I had like an old channel in college mm-hmm that was really bad, but it was the first version of my YouTube channel. And I had one person that really liked those videos for some reason. And when I stopped posting, he emailed me and he was like, are you gonna start posting again? and that was huge because it [01:11:00] made me realize that there's one person that likes these videos.
Maybe I should start posting again. And then I did a whole new channel with what my current channel is now. And he, I told him when I posted my first video and then he was there every week commenting, like I had one person that was excited. So I was literally like, just interacting with him and posting videos for him.
And then I did start getting from there more like just small amounts of people coming in and whoever they were, I was so stoked to talk to them because I mean, yeah, they're, they're the ones that I'm making this for essentially. So I want, of course I wanna talk to them, get to know them.
[01:11:41] CK: Mm mm. So let me double, you know, underline that.
So engage with people that you're making this video for. And then when they engage with you, make sure you give them the TLC. That, that, um, that they desire as well. I love that for sure.
[01:11:58] Sky: For sure. Mm-hmm, keep [01:12:00] listening to, to your community and really be constantly aware of the feedback that they're, that they're giving.
And then eventually I started doing like surveys and stuff like that. Um,
[01:12:13] CK: and , and before the survey, do you hop on call with them? Or like, why are you watching my video? Trying to understand a little bit more of how you can help 'em better? Anything like that? Yeah. I mean,
[01:12:22] Sky: I eventually that first person who, the first true fan really, who was watching my videos in the beginning became my research intern that helps 'em get into med school.
Like it's crazy. Um, we talk all the time at that time that we like check in every once in a while, but yeah, I would listen to their feedback for sure. And anytime somebody, now that I meet in person, I'm like, I'm asking them what videos they like and why and what I think better.
[01:12:54] CK: I like it. Mm-hmm . And do you have like a, like a beta tester group?
Like, these are my true [01:13:00] fans. They know the pulse of our community. Let me, you know, meet with them regularly to get better understanding of the pulse of what they desire and so forth. Do you do that?
[01:13:11] Sky: No, that's a good idea. I should definitely do that. I like
[01:13:13] CK: that. What's her name? Uh, Taylor swift does that right?
Whenever she launches CDs or something like that, albums, I don't do CDs anymore. it shows my age shows my age CDs. What's that? when then when she does like launches, she would do these like V I P parties for her hardcore fans. Right? Yep. So, so that's what she does. Yep. Do you do that with your videos? Like, Hey, I'm about to launch this, you know, video clip.
[01:13:44] Sky: I've done that a little bit, like asking for, um, What title and thumbnail, they like mm-hmm and I, I mean, ideas for sure. Like we have a suggestion box mm-hmm on the discord where people put ideas and I'm always listening to what [01:14:00] ideas people want. And what's interesting is it overlaps a lot where there will be consistent the same idea coming through, and it's something that I was wanting to make mm-hmm and then I'm like, oh, well the community wants it too.
Great. Let's go do it.
[01:14:17] CK: Mm. So the context on I'm hearing you do, uh, that you're saying is make content that supports your community's desire and really human beings desire these hard, you know, true fans desire, right. And also, um, create a container that supports their desire, whether it's Patreon or discord or, you know, whatever the thing that's gonna help 'em.
So that way it's a ecosystem that you're cultivating. Is that an accurate reflect.
[01:14:47] Sky: Yeah, for example, I was gonna say, I'm doing my first retreat in January because this is a something that they've been asking for. Right. Mm-hmm I wouldn't just do a retreat just to do [01:15:00] it, but oh my gosh, the excitement around meeting in person and doing something in person that brings them the things that they see on the channel in real life.
That's, mm-hmm, been a very exciting thing that they've been asking for, so I I'm doing it.
[01:15:15] CK: And so you, you're doing your own retreats in a few months in January? Yes. Oh, amazing. I love that. Yeah. Yeah. That's an obvious. Yes, right? Yeah. For your, your community of seekers, right. So would you be the, the guru or would you be the production manager to bring
[01:15:37] Sky: the no, I'm bringing in the gurus, you know?
Okay. yeah. Yeah. I'm not the guru.
[01:15:44] CK: Hey, I mean, if you're a call leader, you're call leader. I don't know. Yeah.
[01:15:48] Sky: Yeah. Call leader is different than
[01:15:49] CK: guru. Yeah, there you go. There you go. Um, Hmm. How do you think this experience be different as [01:16:00] the experience curator versus a content creator? You know what I mean?
Mm-hmm because it is different. So how do you anticipate this to be very different or only a little bit different? Oh,
[01:16:15] Sky: it's gonna be so fun because I get to really create and carry an experience of a lifetime for a group of people and give that group of people so much. love and attention and connection.
And we are going to bond in a way that's so far beyond just like bonding via screen, you know, mm-hmm so I'm so excited. I think it's gonna be really deep and just a lot of transformation mm-hmm and support and adventure. I think it's gonna be completely different, but it's gonna be so fun and I'm going, we're gonna do content too.
I mean, it's gonna be so fun to make [01:17:00] content as well. Oh
[01:17:02] CK: wait, wait, wait. So there are the, basically the younger versions of you. They desire to be a professional seeker as well. And yeah, they're using this as a way to not only experience, but also make content.
[01:17:18] Sky: yeah, the, I mean the content opportunities are incredible.
Like we're gonna be doing the coolest shit. Of course. I'm gonna be documented.
[01:17:25] CK: Well, maybe not for you, but also for your participants, your participants are gonna make content for themselves.
[01:17:30] Sky: Oh, I don't think so. I mean, if they want to, but we're gonna have like videographer there, you know, I don't know if they're, they can, if they want, but got it.
Got, they don't have to worry about that, but I'm going, got it. Make sure it gets documented for
[01:17:42] CK: them. How do you integrate everything that you learn in your life to be this? I don't even know. What's what's the goal. The ultimately enlightenment like Samma at all times, or how do you integrate everything that you learn in all of these peak experiences?
[01:17:58] Sky: don't think I'll ever [01:18:00] get to pure enlightenment Soma at all times. I don't even know what that is. I have no clue after all this time of seeking. I'm like, what the fuck is enlightenment? I don't know. Mm-hmm um, I have no idea. Like you're asking somebody, who's literally just trying to figure it out and I don't feel like I know
[01:18:20] CK: anything.
Mm. But, but you must, I mean, do you integrate after let's say a peak experience, right. So yeah. As you, when you finish a peak experience, mm-hmm what do you do after you get home? Other than editing
[01:18:38] Sky: journaling, lots of journaling. Um, and I try, and the biggest thing with integration is taking the lessons and the insights that you've gained and applying them in every moment.
Yeah. Yeah. That's the biggest thing. So it's bringing awareness to every single moment. And how can I apply this lesson? And that's true integration. Yes. [01:19:00] So that's, uh, you know, with the darkness, for example, I mean, that integration has been really interesting because I'm constantly coming back to. What I learned in the dark being like, okay, how can I apply the downloads that came through?
How can I actually practice this? How can I bring awareness to every single moment in how I am integrating with all of the things that I, I felt the, the clarity that I felt. Um, and yeah, that's easier so than done. It's not easy cuz we have so many things to distract us from, from
[01:19:46] CK: it. Well, hence the question of integration practices, cuz uh, I'm big on plant medicine.
So I experience a lot of plant medicine and I don't know if you know about that about me. [01:20:00] And I've seen a lot of people that experience the after glow of transformational experience and their first reaction. Yeah, I got, you know, pure love, collective consciousness and all that. And, and then, and then they say, I'm gonna be constantly aware from now on.
Mm. And, but then, you know, after two weeks, the, the afterglow fades because there's no intention in cultivating a practice. Yeah. You know, this time, you know, I'm gonna sit down at doing this thing. Yeah. Or with, well, with this person, hence the question of integration per se. So, right.
[01:20:43] Sky: I mean, will, there are practices that I do consistently that I think that allow me to bring forward some of that integration, but it changes.
It's like how, when you are an athlete, you need to do new workouts to constantly challenge your body in [01:21:00] new ways. Mm-hmm I think that's how I view spiritual practice. And mm-hmm mental health is. I'm not gonna do the same meditation every day for like three years, I'm gonna switch it up and try a different technique.
Mm-hmm sometimes I maybe focus on doing affirmations or that's what I'm I'm on right now is trying mirror affirmations, which isn't something I've really tried before. And it just felt called to do that right now. Um, and I think it's, it's unrealistic to say, okay, every single day I'm gonna do meditation and mirror affirmations and journaling and , uh, ice bath and this and that, like yoga, everything every single day.
I need to do all these things. I mean, that's, that's tough, especially with our, these crazy lives that we we have and so much going on. And so just choosing to stick to one thing mm-hmm and then if you get to all the other things [01:22:00] in a day that you have more time amazing. I mean, my yoga practice has been the most consistent part of my.
Past more than let's see how many years, like 13 years. Okay. Yoga is the hands down. Most consistent thing that I do regularly that allows me to develop deeper awareness and that PR the practice on great map is incomparable so great. I,
[01:22:27] CK: I love that. So let's, let's drill in on that. Uh, which teacher, which book, what kind of yoga practice, cuz we want to get people to be tactical, right?
So if you can guide them, point them towards the direction that is really help you. Right. That would be something that's actionable for whoever's listening. Right?
[01:22:47] Sky: Well, I've tried all different types of yoga, cuz again, yoga's such a huge umbrella of so many different lineages and practices. And so the same way I was mentioning that it's good to switch up your [01:23:00] workout and try one day you do hit one day.
You do. More recovery Wednesday, you're gonna run do cardio. Like I've tried a lot of different types of yoga, but this, the, the form that I come back to is I love, I love hot power yoga. Mm-hmm because there's something that happens when you're in that discomfort on the mat that you just train yourself, how to be with discomfort in life mm-hmm
And that's my favorite. I love B yoga too. B to yoga with chanting mantras. Singing mantras is huge for me. Um, I've tried Kini Kling was crazy. I've tried, um, yeah, a lot of different types, like more of a, when you
[01:23:43] CK: say crazy, what does that mean for you? By the way? Crazy. Awesome or crazy,
[01:23:47] Sky: crazy, crazy in all the ways.
I mean, Ling yoga is absolutely nuts. I went through a whole experience trying ULA yoga, 40 days straight for video. The practice [01:24:00] itself is I think it's really powerful. It's. Mentally challenging. It's physically and mentally challenging. It's one of those types of practices that you just like wanna quit, but you don't.
And then when you get to the other side, it's so rewarding and you experience all this freedom and liberation knowing I did it, I stayed in the crazy breath pattern. You know, I remember like one of the first classes I had to like do this thing with my hands and like blow through my hands for 11 minutes straight, like
And it was so brutal and I just hated it so much when I was in it. And on the other side, I was like, wow, I did it. This is epic, but Kling yoga's crazy as well, because I mean, talk about cults, K yoga and Yogi Baja. There is a whole wild, wild story there. Mm-hmm, vice just really documentary like a month ago that dives into it.
But I, I had also done some stuff about it because when I was exploring Kon yoga, all of this stuff came out [01:25:00] about the founder, Yogi Baja. Yeah. It's some wild stuff that has happened with that community. I don't need to get into it. Mm-hmm um, and it's just like a theme in so many spiritual communities.
There's been tons of cult activity and, and, uh, abuse. And, um, but it doesn't mean that the practices don't have value and you have to understand and, and figure out like, what about this practice? Can I take? And like, what can I drop and not involve myself in? You know, it just depends on what it is, but coming back, how
[01:25:37] CK: do you, yeah.
How do you, cause when I watch your videos, you had mentioned that you interview a fake, um, what's her name? A fake shaman or something like that. Yeah. A time ago when you interview the real, um, Siberian shaman. Right, right, right. You mentioned that. Right. So, so to that point, you are evangelizing. [01:26:00] These human figures and humans inevitably are frail and they have their own faults and so forth.
Mm-hmm how do you think about, you know, uh, Hey, when someone, you know, like a fake drum that you interview like, Hey, this person's actually fake, not real. Or how do you choose the ones that you do wanna highlight? You know what I mean? Not a PLA yeah,
[01:26:22] Sky: yeah. Yeah. Well, it really comes down to, again, the curiosity thing, and then being totally honest about my perspective, cuz I could be totally wrong.
But in that case, I mean, this is somebody who changed their identity multiple times mm-hmm and was from different places. So it was pretty obvious that there were some strange things going on. And beyond that, I, I did uncover a lot of stuff. I didn't actually put in the video. Um, some pretty wild things happening with like bigger web and organization in anyways.
Um, but that, yeah, I had, and I asked her about this and she [01:27:00] kind of denied it on camera multiple times. So, and I also had talked to people who had experiences and I just think it's a bunch of BS, so that's my honest experience. Um, and yeah, I'll never, I mean, who's to say that I am right or wrong about any of these things.
I, I do try and go in with an open mind, but I'm gonna be honest if I think somebody's full of
[01:27:25] CK: love, the love. Yes. Got it. So what's the dream sky. Uh, you're doing all this. You're doing the good work. You're experiencing lots of, um, beautiful journeys and communities. You're building your community. What's the dream.
Is the dream be the, uh, what's his name that passed? Um, oh man, he has a food show. Anthony you mean Bordain of food, but in the spiritual realm or like the Joe Rogans of those things? Yeah. So like what's the dream? Uh, that sounds
[01:27:59] Sky: good. I think [01:28:00] that's a good plan. Yeah. I don't know. I'm just gonna keep going.
I, I wanna just make better videos. I think the dream is just to make the best videos that I can. I mean, I, I have a desire to yeah. Um, make things that nobody's ever seen before, and I don't know where that's gonna go, but I'm gonna keep, keep going.
[01:28:23] CK: I love it. And then who do you look to, you know, you know, to in the U in a YouTube world, like Mr.
Beast or someone to like, Hey, this person are doing all the right things.
[01:28:34] Sky: I don't know. I mean, I there's so many channels that I really enjoy. Um, I don't try and like mimic channels because I take things from a bunch of different. places that I like, but I, I, again, I wanna make stuff that is original, that like mm-hmm, , you're not gonna see this anywhere else.
So I don't know if I can answer that question properly.
[01:28:58] CK: So you do [01:29:00] okay. Two schools of thought, right. One school thought is, let me consume others and then pick and choose, you know, basically get inspire ideas from their stuff as one school. I thought, yeah, another school I thought is, Hey, I'm Gary V great example.
He just, I, I don't watch anyone's anything just gonna be me. So that's that school I thought, where are you in that spectrum?
[01:29:24] Sky: I love consuming content and yeah, but, but I'm not trying to mimic anyone with the stuff that I make. Yeah. So I'm gonna take just by default of consuming content and having that in my brain and the running in the background, all these different things that I admire and all these styles I admire will somehow come through.
And what the piece of. Video that I'm making, but I don't really try and like, okay, I'm gonna do it like how they're doing it.
[01:29:50] CK: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Hey sky. Um, I really, really appreciate you sharing your journey and doing what you do. [01:30:00] Uh, yeah. Our common friend describe you as a badass, you know, creator, a badass woman.
Uh, you, you know who it is. so, uh, and, and that's, that's my experience of you as well. Oh, okay. I really appreciate just how you live your life. You know, being a seeker in such a fearless, courageous way in an, you know, you're helping people, uh, finding modalities, that's gonna help 'em improve their life.
You're telling the stories of these practitioners and wisdom keepers and how to live longer, live a happier life, whether it's, you know, through whatever modalities, however extraordinary may be. I really, really appreciate you. Thank you for the work that you do.
[01:30:44] Sky: Oh, thank you. I appreciate you too. I'm so glad that we got to do this and this was so much fun and I love talking to you.
Even our conversation that we had at AUA off camera was just so fun. So I'm excited to continue, continue talking as [01:31:00] fellow seekers.
[01:31:02] CK: we, we do have similar path. Yeah. All right. With that being said, um, yeah, guys, go, go to YouTube and follow sky. What's your sky live sky life. That's right. Sky live. Okay.
Until we see each other again
Sky Cowans is a video creator who explores the world of wellness, spirituality, and alternative lifestyle on her YouTube channel Sky Life. Sky follows her curiosity and shares what she learns along the way through documentary-style videos.