RHIANNON ROSALIND is the President, CEO & Owner of The Economic Club of Canada, Founder of The Jr. Economic Club of Canada and CEO & Co-Founder of The Global Institute for Conscious Economics (GICE).
Rhiannon is redefining what it means to be a corporate leader in this country. She has hosted countless thought leaders and changemakers at The Economic Club of Canada through the years including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, President Barack Obama, Former First Lady Michelle Obama, and human rights advocate Amal Clooney.
A go-to for Bay Street, tech, healthcare, domestic, and international political leaders, The Economic Club is a 21st-century public policy platform where the leaders of today and tomorrow connect.
AC: What does success mean to you?
RHIANNON ROSALIND: Success to me is freedom. Freedom to enjoy your life and loved ones, freedom to do work that’s meaningful to you, freedom to explore yourself and the world around you.
How has your perception of success changed over the years?
Naturally, I use to think success was all about money, job title, awards and accolades. I say ‘naturally’ because in many ways this is what our modern society teachers us- and those are natural things to strive for. However, over the years I’ve come to understand that these things don’t always bring us happiness and joy. In fact, the constant striving for material success often leaves most people feeling the exact opposite, burnt-out and depressed. Now, I have a much more holistic view of success and a more personal relationship with the word. Success is unique to each individual and we are all here to fulfil a unique purpose.
What is the driving purpose behind The Economic Club of Canada?
The Economic Club is here to provide a safe place to talk about the most pressing issues in Canada. I strive for it to be a place of connection for people, of inspired thinking, and of solving critical and challenging problems in a loving and inclusive way.
Do you have a daily routine?
I have a very important daily routine, which includes waking up and writing in a gratitude journal, spending time in meditation, and then moving my body through yoga or dance or whatever feels right for me. The rest of my day varies depending on what is happening in my life and business but these simple daily practises keep me grounded and feeling inspired.
How do you keep track of your short and long term goals?
I write all my goals down in a journal and I revisit them weekly, daily and monthly through my personal self-care practices. I would like to point out though – that its important to be flexible with your goals as life is always changing as are you. If you visit your goals often and ensure they reflect your core values you will develop a positive relationship with achievement and personal success.
What were the biggest obstacles you faced in becoming a successful entrepreneur?
I faced many obstacles, starting all the way back in childhood coming from a home with little money, violence and addiction issues. I was the first in my family to go to university and I found that I had to work extra hard to not let old trauma and patterns keep me from achieving my goals. Later on, When I first took over The Economic Club, I had to overcome being the first young women to hold this kind of position in Canada. This was challenging for me and equally challenging for those around me – but the amount you can learn and grow when you push yourself beyond your own limits is something that inspires me and drives me every day. We are all capable of greatness.
What is one of the biggest misconceptions about economics?
The biggest misconceptions about economics are that its hard, confusing, scary or boring. The world of economics is all around us, everything from our personal relationships to the environment in which we live is connected to economics. Economics is not all about money – its about the way we organize our value system in society, it’s fundamental to life and its fascinating.
How do you deal with rejection and failure?
It really depends on the day, and that’s the truth. Failure and rejection hold many important lessons and wisdom in them, but that doesn’t mean they are easy or we enjoy experiencing them. I often have to deal with big failure or rejection in stages, and give myself time to really experience my full range of emotions. The first stages often include sadness, disappointment, anger, unworthiness and often shame. As I work through those stages, I often come to a place of gratitude, acceptance and ultimately transformation- as failure and rejection often mean that you are meant to approach something in your life differently.
For all the dreamers reading this now, what mindset do they need to turn their vision into reality?
A truly powerful mindset, can only exist if your willing to do the deeper work. If it was as simple as reading a quote we would all be living out our true dreams. The truth is the only thing that can stop you from having all you want is you. My best advice is to get to know your shadow aspects – the things that keep you negative or feeling too scared to go after what you want. As you embrace those parts of yourself and learn from them, you can take the lesson and shift your mindset. That’s where the power is.
If you could start all over again, what would you do differently?
It’s so cheesy to say this, but my answer is honestly nothing. I needed to experience all the good and all the bad that got me here. I wouldn’t trade in that wisdom and experience for anything now and that is how I know I am free. I’ve done the work to make peace with myself and my past choices.
What is your biggest source of motivation?
Love and happiness are the ultimate sources of motivation. I want to feel those things and I want to help others feel them too. Especially those that have given up, or lost their way.
How important is social media to you right now?
I think social media is an important tool for connection and an easy distraction all at once. While I know and see the value that it brings, I also see the value of not always being connected and learning how to connect with yourself and those right in front of you.
What do you want the world to look like in 10 years?
I would like to see an equal society, that uses innovation and technology to bring more care and freedom to our daily lives. I would like to see harmony and peace – with a more conscious economic system in place that values the wellbeing of people and the planet, in equal measure to profit and productivity.
If you had the chance to put something on billboards worldwide next week, what would it be? Or what would it say?
The billboard would say “Wake Up”. Its time to take responsibility for our lives and for our planet. If you see something in the world that needs changing, dare yourself to be the one to take action first. Nothing will magically change unless we choose to change it.
INTERVIEW: ADAM CROOKES