by Jenna Kutcher
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So I got a Peloton bike late last year, and I have to be totally candid here, I wasn’t sure if I’d fully buy into it. I knew I wanted a new way to move and care for my body. Getting to the gym was challenging being a new mom, so I followed the rave reviews of some friends and got this machine delivered to my house and vowed to just give it a shot.
Now let me be totally candid again — It’s not necessarily the bike that keeps me coming back every day. It’s this community of people cheering me on and sending virtual high fives, and maybe most of all, it’s the instructors. Ally Love is one of my favorites. Attending one of her classes is this spiritual experience, like I hop off that seat ready to take on ALL the things with positivity and light.
Ally is a master at building community and leading people to improve their lives not only through moving their bodies, but changing perspectives and pushing limits. She is a motivating and inspiring voice when I need it, and I’m thrilled that she’s here to share that with you, no bike required. It’ll be nice to hear her words of encouragement NOT while I’m sweating. (P.S. If you want to join me on Peloton, do it right here!)
Who is Ally?
“I’m a true believer that you can have multiple titles,” Ally started. She says she’s part of the “slash generation” with a versatile career, not a vertical career. She’s the host of the Brooklyn Nets, she’s the CEO of Love Squad, and an instructor at Peloton, just to name a few of her titles.
Ally’s story almost ended before it could fully begin when she was hit by a car at 9-years old. She remembers being in the hospital, the prognosis was bleak, when her mom told her this: “You have to choose at 9-years old if you want to live or if you want to die.”
“That opportunity to decide life for myself at such a young age has shaped me so much,” Ally said. Her mother handed her the ability to choose and shape her own life. Ally decided at that moment to pray for life and fight, and to live life to the fullest.
Ally approaches life, at least the aspects that I see through Peloton and what she shares online, with a glass half-full mentality. I wanted to know if that has always been a default mode for her or if it’s a choice she has to make each day.
“Oftentimes, our first thoughts aren’t our best thoughts,” she explained. Think about yourself — When you consider who you are, are you quick to think that you’re the best? If you’re like most people, your first response is the critical, negative things about yourself.
“But that second thought and the third thought, and the way you shape that narrative about yourself, is in your control. I take that control seriously,” Ally told me.
“You get to decide right now [to change your life]. The decision is up to you.”
What She Thinks About Balance
With so much on her plate and such a weighty responsibility on her shoulders to speak into the lives of people who need to hear it, I had to know what Ally thinks about quote-end quote balance. It’s something we’re encouraged to pursue, but is it real for someone who is multi-passionate?
She laughed and explained, “Balance does exist, but it’s not a skill that’s equally even… Balance is understanding what you have to prioritize in the season that you’re in.”
Ally continued to explain what it looks like to evaluate your priorities as they change and as new ones come into your life. You have to look at what needs more of your attention, and what you actually enjoy or want to give your attention to.
“You want to be fluid and not flexible, because flexibility has a breaking point,” Ally explained. “Understand that balance is something that is always evolving, and as long as you’re aware of your priorities and can define them internally, it helps you define why you’re doing what you’re doing. And you find peace in that.”
Advice for Filling a Gap You See
Ally founded her community Love Squad when she saw a gap in the market for people like her who were searching for mentors and conversations to build her multi-passionate career in NYC. Press play for the full story behind the launch and what the early days look like.
There are so many gaps that we see in the world around us, but it takes a certain push and courage and trust in yourself to move forward and fill that gap yourself. I asked Ally for her advice for anyone not sure if they could be the ones to put something out into the world and fill a gap they see.
Ally remembered a conversation from a panel at a Love Squad event, and the advice from the speaker stuck with her. “Being a social justice advocate doesn’t mean you have millions of people marching with you. It doesn’t only matter when there are large numbers.”
“Sometimes we forget that if there is a gap and a need, we don’t need 50 people, or 75 people on your waitlist, or a 100 person Zoom call,” Ally explained. “If you’re trying to fill a gap, it may not be for millions of people right now… But that doesn’t mean you’re not doing something for good, and for the good of your community.”
Ally reminded us all, “If you are being called to do something, to be a gap-bridger, don’t grandize the power of numbers. The power is in the people.”
Can Women Have it All?
It’s clear Ally has figured out what real balance is, how to navigate her priorities, and how to build a body of work that serves others while also filling her up. So I wanted to dig into a loaded question with her: Can women have and do it all?
“It’s understanding what ‘all’ means to you. You can have it all but you can’t have everything,” Ally said with a total mic drop moment.
She explained further, “It’s not to limit your abilities, it’s to level set. ‘All’ looks different for everyone.” Having it all is about setting your level for ‘all’ — defining your five most important things — and then determining who you are at your core.
Consider these three questions: Who am I? Who do I want to be? And who do people see me as? Ally explained that when those questions have all the same answers, then you’re on the path of becoming yourself.
“Once you’re able to reconcile those three questions, and they change over time, that puts you in a position to ask yourself what you want. And when you can say who you are, you’re better able to articulate what you want and why you want it.”
More from This Episode
What is Love Squad and what frustration was the catalyst for its launch? How does she approach the Peloton classes she coaches to lead her students to a goal? And what’s the one thing she wants you to hear and understand right now, no matter who or where or what you are? You have to hit play to find out. Find this conversation with Ally Love wherever you get your podcasts or with the quick links above.