How My Mentorships Work

EEK! Today my first ever mentee is on the blog – Deepa Berar.

As you guys know, I take on 3 mentees a year. The movers, the shakers & the ones who love to hustle. I thought it would be fun to pick Deepa’s brain on the process to show you guys what goes into it all.

Deepa was actually the one who inspired the mentee program in the first place. She found me & Michael through The Gary Vee Show & asked to interview us. We met for coffee & instantly liked each other.

After the interview ( how vintage is this ! ) she proposed to me. Proposed to me to mentor her. So, once a month for about half an hour we would discuss strategy & building her brand.

Side note: right now I’m full for mentees, but if you’d like to apply in the future, tell me about yourself below.

To get you acquainted with Deepa, let me tell you a bit about her. She started out as a beauty blogger & YouTuber until she lost almost all her hair to alopecia. She spent so much time being her own guru & managed to grow all her hair back!

Deepa decided to open up this facet of her life & grew the most amazing community because of it. In this post you’ll find out tips for branding, the most valuable things she learned as a mentee, & her advice for people just coming into the space.

Alright, lets get into it with my very first mentee, Deepa Berar.

♡♡♡

♡ Introduce yourself to The Skinny Confidential community. Tell us your story!

Deepa Berar: Hi, I’m Deepa. I’m a YouTuber & cosmetic tattoo artist! I grew up in the suburbs of Toronto & last year made the move to sunny San Diego & I’m so happy! It feels like where I was meant to be my whole life.

I post videos & blog about everything from alopecia to beauty, microblading & a little bit of my life too. I started out as a professional makeup artist & hairstylist 14 years ago & my blog started out as a way to answer all of the beauty questions I would get from my cousins. My background is East Indian & a lot of us come from really big families, so I actually have 38 first cousins in total.

3 years ago, I lost 70% of my hair due to alopecia & through a ton of research & experimentation I managed to grow all of it back in. For those of you who don’t know what alopecia is, it’s an autoimmune disorder that causes hair loss on the scalp and/or body.

At the time this all happened, everything I was posting about was all beauty related. I was collaborating with beauty brands & even had an ambassadorship with a hair brand, so there really was no hiding my hair loss from my viewers. Lauryn had been my mentor for about 3 months at the time this all started happening. Through her encouragement, I decided to open up about my journey with alopecia on my YouTube channel & to my surprise, there were so many people who reached out that were going through the same thing.

That really encouraged me to post more about hair loss & to try to help others as much as I could. 3 years later, we have built a strong community of beautiful, compassionate & supportive people. It’s amazing to see people come together like this & it truly makes me so happy.

Tell us about the mentorship with me.

DB: The mentorship was such an amazing learning experience! I love everything to do with business & I’ve always known that having a mentor is so important. When you’re starting any business there is such a huge learning curve & it helps so much to have someone to talk to who has gone through it all & learn what worked & what didn’t for them.

When I first came across Lauryn back in 2014, I fell in love with her blog immediately! There was just something so exciting about each & every one of her posts! The style of her blog, her writing style, the photography & graphics were so inspiring ( can you tell I’m a total Photoshop nerd? ), & her personality just shone through everything. It was refreshing to see someone being so authentic when the rest of us were trying to be so perfect.

Something about her just struck me & I knew she was the person I wanted as a mentor. We worked together for a year & did phone sessions along with a couple of in-person sessions when I would visit San Diego. Her & Michael were just so down to earth & approachable, & you could tell that they just genuinely wanted to help. She gave me so much valuable advice & really encouraged me to just be myself.

Tell everyone how you approached me- I LOVED IT!

DB: 🙂 So back when I emailed Lauryn, I was doing these interviews for my YouTube channel ( which actually became the basis of my podcast, Deep Beauty ). They were interviews with people who were doing inspirational things & I really wanted to have Lauryn & Michael on. I emailed her several times asking if I could interview her. At the time I was working with a PR rep who had drafted a pitch email that went on & on about me & all my accomplishments & why the person should want to be interviewed by me, which was really the wrong approach. I think it was something that would have worked in the past, but with social media, things have changed so much. A lot of traditional marketing tactics just don’t work anymore. You have to be real & to the point.

At the time I was still living in Canada & was headed on a trip to San Diego. At the last minute I decided to reach out to Lauryn one more time. This time my email was way shorter & to the point. I wrote from the heart & talked about how obsessed I was with Lauryn’s blog, branding & business sense & that I needed to share her with my world. That was the one that got the response.

When we did meet, I was nervous to ask her to be my mentor, but my dad ( who is an entrepreneur as well ) encouraged me to just do it & pointed out that the worst she could say was no. So when the interview was done, I just came out & asked her if she would consider mentoring me & she said yes! I was so, so happy. You never know what’s possible until you ask.

What was the main piece of advice that really helped?

DB: I learned so much! I took so many notes from all of our conversations & condensed it down to key points that I still refer to, & trust me there are a ton of great points! I think the main thing that Lauryn helped me do was to take myself seriously as a business. In any business you are going to be working so hard in the beginning stages with very little profit, if any. The whole social media world makes it seem like you are going to be landing brand deals & sponsorships right away, but it doesn’t work like that. You have to put a lot of hours in to build your brand before you will see any money. Money can not be your motivation. You have to be connected with your message & the reason why you’re doing all of this.

That’s one thing that really stuck for me. My husband & I did the long distance relationship thing for 3.5 years, so I was constantly traveling back & forth from Toronto to San Diego. I was basically only working part time for half the year so I was constantly stressed out about money. You can actually see the moment I decided to really take Lauryn’s advice to heart in my posts. My posts became more real, genuine & transparent.

Everything just started to fall into place once my motivation became about helping others. Lauryn helped me ignore all of the noise & focus on my message & that’s what really made the shift for me.

Do you have any branding tips to share?

DB: Yes! Make sure everything you do is cohesive. Whatever fonts, colors, imagery & even social media handles you use, make sure they are the same across the board. It makes it so much easier for people to find you & for you to ‘stick’ in their minds. Don’t be afraid to be different, just because a particular font or color is popular doesn’t mean you have to use it.

Also, don’t be afraid to let your true self show in everything you do! What is that saying- be yourself, everyone else is already taken? Someone is going to connect with your branding & communication style & for the people who don’t, well as Lauryn always says “you’re not going to be for everyone.”

What’s your advice for other bloggers who are just starting out?

DB: Find what you’re truly passionate about & don’t be so concerned with how many other people are talking about the same thing. Focus on you & like Lauryn always says, “just put your head down & work.” You have to have tunnel vision when it comes to your goals. It’s so easy to get distracted by other things, I mean the craziness of life is never going to stop & you will have no control over that. All you have control of is how much you put into your goals.

Also, don’t pay so much attention to what everyone else is doing or posting about. I know that can be really hard to do, but it takes away from your message. I try not to watch other YouTubers or read other blogs when I am about to film or write because it changes my voice. I learned that from Lauryn.

Focus on helping others & building a community & the success will come!

How did the mentorship help your brand?

DB: My mentorship with Lauryn has changed my life completely. Lauryn really encouraged me to put my authentic self out there with videos like “My Big Secret” & “My Alopecia Story.” If sharing your struggles is going to help someone else going through something similar, then why not put it out there? There are people that not only want to, but need to hear your story.

That’s one thing I love about Lauryn, she takes responsibility of her community by putting her struggles out there & shares what has worked for her & what hasn’t. Not a lot of people are that fearless.

Sharing my authentic self led me to ultimately connecting with my WHY. When I was posting about beauty, I truly didn’t feel fulfilled. Now that I’ve been able to help others suffering from hair loss, it has resonated so deeply & opened up this whole community that I didn’t think was possible. And it helped me connect with my #deepbeauty message of beauty on the inside & out.

Through this whole journey I was also able to find my ultimate dream job- cosmetic tattooing/permanent makeup. I started microblading & opened up my own studio in San Diego & soon I’ll be doing scalp micropigmentation, which is tattooing hair onto the scalp. It’s basically both worlds combined- beauty & hair loss.

One last thing that really helped was learning not to wait to execute. Lauryn really drove that home for me. I wanted to start a Facebook group for so long & when I discussed the idea with her, she said “when is the time going to be right? How many followers do you need before the time is perfect?” That really hit home & I launched my group the next day. The time is never going to be perfect, you just have to jump in & you’ll figure it out along the way.

What are the 3 main things you learned from the mentorship?

DB: The 3 things are:

  1. Consistency is everything.
  2. You can’t do it alone so get help.
  3. Always be building, never stay stagnant.

What kind of business owner would you like to mentor?

DB: Someone who truly wants to help others.

♡♡♡

You can expect my other mentees to come on the blog & talk about their experience too, so stay tuned.

Be sure to follow Deepa @deepaberar & check out her podcast here.

x, lauryn

+ scope how to stand out on instagram.

++ check out 14 ways to work smarter.

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20 Replies to “How My Mentorships Work”

  1. Hey Lauren when you have availabilites I would love for you too be my mentor. You honestly know so much about creating a blue ocean and being different from everything , that’s what I want to do. I know with the right guidance I will be able to make things happen

  2. Oh gah love this. Because I reached out to Deepa years ago and got on her podcast! We connected INSTANTLY. She has been a xonstant source of inspo for me to keep going. Lauryn, you are the reason I even entered the blog world and are my ultimate muse and guru. I love seeing my two faves come together. I just moved to India which allowed everything to fall in place for my brand. After years of writing about South Asian creatives in the film and music industry, that is what I’ve changed my blog to. I got on video because Lauryn pushed me and I love it!

    1. Girl you are the ultimate!! You have such a gift to share with this world and I’m so glad to see you giving it your all!! Keep going ?

  3. Hi, Lauryn! First off, I love you!! I know that has to be strange from someone you’ve never met, but here we are. I’ve followed you for almost a year when I first heard you and Michael on Lewis Howes’s podcast. I think it’s so great that you have a mentorship program. I would definitely love to be a mentee in the future! I am currently 28 and work as a director in higher education; I specifically oversee a testing center at a community college. I love where I work and the overarching themes of what I get to do, but it’s time for a change for me. Lately, it’s been on my heart to begin blogging, vlogging, etc., but I’ve been R E A L L Y slow to jump in. I feel confident in what I’ve accomplished thus far in my life, but for the first time, I’m pretty scared to take action. Here’s to taking a chance and reaching out to someone on the internet, and to making the most of extra time due to quarantine life. Oh, by the way, my name is Adriana. Thank you for all you do!

  4. Hi Lauren, I would absolutely love to have you as my mentor. I’m really inspired by your podcast and blog, and your focus on adding value to your listeners and being specific. As a result, I’ve channeled this attitude into my own podcast (fashion originators podcast)! I love how smart and fun you are, and how you have such a wonderful dynamic with your husband. I hope to achieve a similar balance in my own life. I’m sure things aren’t necessarily always perfect, but you’re really ambitious and real and I respect you a lot. I’m making a lot of positive changes in my life and career to move things forward (monetizing, becoming my own boss, finding the right man), and would absolutely love to learn from you.

  5. Lauryn,
    My name is Morgan and I am a senior at Florida State graduating in May with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing. Right now, due to the circumstances with the Coronavirus, companies have halted their hiring process. I have taken this time to really think about what I am looking for in my career and an organization that I could potentially work for. I would love to be apart of your mentorship program because I respect the business woman you are and believe you have so much to offer to people in terms of advice and how to kick start your career. I would love to have a mentor to help listen and organize my thoughts and ideas that I have for myself and my brand. I have been inspired by your blog and podcast (specifically with Josh Landan) during this time to take control of my life. I have a passion to help people through the power of marketing and am stuck with my ideas and how to execute them.

  6. Lauryn (and Michael)!
    Your podcast was the first podcast I listened to that made me fall in love with continuously learning and thinking that podcasting is actually super cool. Anytime I feel like I’m in a rut, I love listening to your podcast or coming on your blog because something about it just wakes me up. I would LOVE to have you as a mentor as I try to figure out what my personal branding will be. Currently, I am a junior in college studying engineering. I have been blogging/instagramming about my passion for health and wellness/lifestyle and also profiling women in business to inspire other girls! I hope you’ll keep me in mind when looking for your next mentee!!
    Stay safe <3

  7. Lauryn,
    I love, love, love this! I love tsc and the podcast, I started following back in December (super late to the game) and am just obsessed and went back and started from episode one! Which is super helpful because I decided to start a blog during this time. I felt I had no direction or purpose (except always feeling like I wanted to connect to more people and there was something bigger out there – legit feeling since I was a child – but I’m also introverted) and writing some has totally helped. I would love to one day be a mentee. I’m still working on making my blog have a true purpose and conveying that. I used my name at first because I thought it would be more for personal training, but realized I want the be that relatable girl. The one who gets when the struggles of health, fitness, work, whatever happens and let girls know they aren’t alone. And hopefully bigger and better things are out there (average mid-west girl with west coast dreams). I don’t have a name down yet for this and I need it to be more cohesive with my other social platforms, but I would love this opportunity one day.
    P.S. also wanted to learn about podcasting and podcast editing (thanks skillshare for the help!). So I recorded myself, and it is SO hard. I don’t know how people can talk alone for 45 minutes. I made it maybe 15 and the struggle was real. SO much more respect for the game. But hopefully using that roughness to gain some skill!

  8. Hi Lauryn! For the past year, I’ve considered you my online mentor. The podcast, blog, & Instagram have inspired me to be original with my brand and company.

    I own Maddie B Wellness, a Senior (55+) fitness and wellness company.
    . I have a website, Facebook group, & YouTube. My content covers virtual fitness classes, rehab exercises, food tips, Alzheimer’s prevention, etc.
    though I continue learning about my field everyday thru health podcasts, books, studies, I’ve needed to expand my knowledge of business, branding, marketing, and monetizing. I would love the opportunity to learn more from you. Sometimes I question where I should start, or if there’s something specific I should focus on before something else. You know, the usual craziness that comes with creating your own business.

    Thank you for your information. Your mentee seems absolutely amazing & it was great hearing her story. Love you always !

  9. AHHHHH Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! I cannot believe you mentor people! On top of the many other things you do!

    My name is Summer Partain, I am a mother of 3 and bad ass business woman. Well, I am a business woman who thinks of herself as bad ass, which is all that matters.

    I have been in business management and operations for over 10 years now. I am great at it, managing teams, running finances, HR, making sure owners and employees have everything they need. Ensuring they are trained for their positions and all runs as smooth as possible.

    I started to notice a few years back that I was enjoying my days less and less. Sitting there looking at spreadsheets for 10+ hours a day puts you in a mood if you know what I mean. Not being able to use the creative part of my brain, coming to work and feeling like I am stuck doing these mundane tasks that don’t light me up inside. I don’t really know how it happened, but I fell into a really bad depression. I had two beautiful babies, had a great stable job, a beautiful home, and could not figure out what was missing.

    When I got pregnant with my little guy I was forced to get off my medication that was numbing me from my sadness and needed to focus on being healthy and present for my kids and my husband. It was during these 10 months that I really started to take a good look at what I needed and wanted to do in my life and try to implement a plan for how I was going to get there.

    So I dove into personal growth books, podcasts, youtube channels, you name it. I actually found your blog through one of the first youtubers (and one of my absolute favorites) I started watching (Amy Landino).

    Having my son gave me a new light I had not seen in so long. A light that made me realize that my life was worth living and that it could be full of joy if I could just can get out of my own way, stop the self-sabotaging, and start making a difference. Not just in myself, but I thought that maybe if I could better myself, I could ultimately better others by default.

    I am proud to say I have since started doing little microblogs on instagram and have made an attempt at a website and my youtube channel, but I am just excited to have started. I tend to get discouraged if what I create is not perfect and then I get in my own head. But, if you would have told me a couple years ago I would be this happy and this excited for life again, I would not have believed you.

    Anyways, full on life story there but I wanted to show you that I am ready for the next step. I am ready to make this happen and make this a full-time thing for the rest of my life. That being said, if you have any openings in your future for another mentee, I would be honored to be a part of it. What you have created is so inspiring and you just seem like you are just so happy and in the zone. It is so cool to see and watch unfold.

    Cheers and keep up the amazing work. If nothing else I will be a true fan of what your doing always!!!!

  10. Hi Lauryn,

    My name is Alex Taylor. I currently run a nonprofit in Seattle and am creating a CBD topical line (set to go live later this year). Your podcast has helped me a lot in both my personal and professional life (I’ve shared many of your episodes with my business partner and friends/family). You have definitely been an inspiration on how to get (more) shit done. I would value and greatly appreciate the opportunity to be one of your mentees in the future; I know I can also provide value to you in that space (I really believe that symbiotic learning is important in any mentor/mentee relationship).

    Anyway – thank you for being a badass role model for everyone in the TSC community!

    Cheers,
    Alex