bRules? Where we're going, we don't need bRules!!
Let’s just start by saying, Hi! My name is Elena Harder, and I'm the founder of Evolving Humanity. I love About pages, I think it's an amazing opportunity to help people get to know the face behind the business.
I'll do my best to let you know a little bit about me, how I got here, and WHY I do what I do.
First things first. I'm a huge maverick, I don't like rules that don't make sense, and it is impossible to put me in a box. I believe in magic and the conspiring beautiful force that is the Universe behind my every action. I am SUPER lucky to be alive, and I know I'm here for a reason.
I love to help people stand up, and stand out, to find the courage to REALLY be themselves, and let their bizzare, funky, alternative thinking, leading the way BRILLIANT light shine. I love seeing the light in peoples eyes when they are pursuing their passion, and their Destiny. I believe that “training” is something you need if you don’t already have the raw talent to outshine the rest (which you do).
Since 2010, I've been helping the leaders of the evolution; coaches, speakers, authors, personal development and spiritual awakening teachers, to show up PROUD, CONFIDENT and GORGEOUS in their marketing materials. Watching someone own and claim their story, how they got to be where they are, the trials and tribulations that they chose here to come, and lead the collective transformation of this pattern. It gives me full body goosebumps on the outside AND the inside. Phew. Some might say it's JoyGasmic. (But that's getting ahead of myself)
In order to really understand how the fusion of Web Design, Personal Development, and JoyGasm came about, you really need to hear the whole story. So that's what we've got below. It still gives me the heebie jeebies to be this transparent, but it's part of walking my path, so I trust that you will either enjoy it, LOVE it, or be freaked out and leave (your choice, and I love you for all of them)
In the service of evolution, you don't always know what you're doing, or what you're getting yourself into. Many people in the marketing world have success stories where they started their 100K coaching business after leaving their 300k/year sales position at a high end retail something something. They want to impress you with numbers and ease and $ turned in a short period of time.
This is not about the $$, and it is not about the prestige. This is about having the FUCKING COURAGE to stand in your own darkness, and in your own light.
This is about sharing the TRUTH, of who I am with you,
so you can know what is possible, and make a decision for your life.
Most of all, this is for people ready for CHANGE!
It's about showing you that I know what it's like, to be where you are, and that there is something better on the other side. It's about sharing, so that you begin to beleive that I can help you move from STRESS with where you ARE, to FUN with where you are. To EPIC FUN with where you want to BE.
If you want ease and grace and princess show, to This is NOT that story. This is a community of HARD KNOCKS, of single mom-preneurs, and of people who have the guts and the glory to take a stand for their dreams, and make them a reality. This is for people who have been knocked down by life, who have been abused, and mistreated by the situations and people in their lives, and who maybe rolled around in the shit for so long they learned to like the taste of it. Because I've been there. (and unless you've been there, you'll never understand)
So It All Started.... with me, 8 months pregnant, looking at my MESSED UP life, and saying. Something needs to change, and it has to change before this baby shows up.
I was about $3000 in debt, living in a house I couldn't afford, paying for the man to live in our house, and for his drinking, my savings had run out a few months ago, and I was praying that tax money would come in, in time to cover the everything else that needed to be paid. I'd never held a job for more than 6 months because after that they got boring as hell, and everything I had done was retail, working minimum wage, I had never made more than $13/hour doing anything. Summer painting houses, Tim Hortons, 3 months at a Sign Printing company, photo shop, websites for fun as a teen, cook, and cutting grass at a golf course.
I looked at my prospects, and they were pretty dim. "I need to find a way to make money" I said to the baby in my belly.
And the first Evolving Humanity Cash Machine was born...
See when I was young, I used to draw, everything and anything, mostly Dragons.
And being the nerdy, ICQ using geek that I was back then, I drew pictures of dragons,
coloured them in photoshop, and made little HTML sites for them. <blink> </blink> WAAAAY back then.
I figured that I could design a website for someone else, I went to my first networking meeting, without any business cards or anything, and met some people who needed new websites. The first one was $250, and I was ecstatic. It took me 10 hours, I made $25/hour, and I never looked back.
From there, I learned and grew, and learned and grew. I was astonished at the changes in the technology of websites. People wanted graphics, and sites, so I made some graphics and sites. And for a while I was happy building those for them. I learned a ton, most of all, that it would work to tell someone I could do something and then figure out how to actually do it later! (VERY important)
But it was not a happy life. I was sleep deprived, desperate for cash, and although I was experiencing some success, I often didn't make enough to do ANYTHING FUN. Or have spare time, or anything of the sort.
While doing all this, I was also busy crashing my life out with That Man, over and over again (Let's count my Classic Alcoholic/Enabler Relapse re-hookups ... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5... no wait folks, there's more. 6 times.) And I spent about 4 years going back and forth, between experiencing a little bit of success (a couple of $2000 months! WAHOOO!) and then crashing out my life, putting more $$ on my credit card and ending up back with my parents. Oh, did I mention all this was happening accompanied by sleep deprivation caused by a very small Alex?
The incredible journey of learning to forgive myself for the "stupid mistake" of my unplanned son is it's own story, and I lived in the energy of resentment, desperation and exhaustion, alternated with incredible joy, enthusiasm, and hope based in... not much. Life was VERY cyclical, and my mood depending completely on whether things were going well with The Man, or not, and if Alex had slept enough for me to keep up with my manic "trying to make it all work" work schedule. PHHHEEEWWW..
Something needed to change. So I flew our butts to Sayulita Mexico, thinking I could work remotely, the beach would keep me sane, and Alex entertained, and thank GOD I wouldn't have to put up with winter. I hate wearing jackets. I put the trip on my credit card, and figured I would work it all out. Invited The Man back into my life, and crashed it out again. Moved back in with my parents. Yup. Good Stuff.
Life Cycled like that for about 3 years.
It was the longest I've EVER been stuck in a shitty pattern. It was a painful, difficult and illuminating time in my life. I had enough self awareness to realize I was doing this to myself, but hadn't quite figured out I deserved better, and could create something different in VERY short order. (but again, getting ahead of myself)
I'm just telling you this so you know, that it wasn't always like it is now, and I fixed it through my own dedication to the JoyGasmic Path, as I will share more of shortly.
We all hit that point. That point where either we break, or we change something forever in our life permanently.
So on February 1st 2013, I said goodbye for good to Romance with That Man. Whew. That was just the beginning of the journey. Because, by this point, not only did I have a dysfunctional relationship with him, I had managed to create a downward spiral of fear and worry and hatred and anger and rage that was free spinning, self generating, and VERY embedded into my psyche. There was damage in there to my self esteem that I'm STILL repairing, and a cyclical pattern of hope and failure that took years to get out of.
At that point in my life, I hit, what I would call rock bottom. I THOUGHT I had done this a couple of times already, but I was wrong. This time around I maxed out my credit cards and line of credit paying that month's rent, closed the doors of my house, shut out all my friends, stopped email contact with the few clients I had remaining (without saying anything to them.. bad bad business move, but I really didn't care). Smoked WAY WAY WAY too much pot in an effort to numb out the pain I was feeling, and tried not to be a terrible mom to my son (then just over 3). I was paralyzed with fear, sorrow, and the victim mentality of an abused woman. It was the most difficult time of my life, I considered suicide, but couldn't stand the idea of what would happen to my son if I disappeared one day in a foreign country.
I went into the worst and deepest depression I had been in years.
All while living in a paradise.
Part of me was JUST barely self aware enough to realize the absurdity of being SO upset about life while living 40ft from the beach, on a rooftop patio with a view of the surf break. But it was awefull. I hated everything, especially my son and myself, and The Man. But I also had that practiced self awareness thing to realize that I had done all of this to myself, and was CONTINUING to do it to myself, now that The Man was gone. Shit.
So midst trying to find some sort of mental peace, and crashing out full and completely, I had a moment... That would forever change my life.
There was a moment, sitting on the patio, with the wind blowing in my hair, and the tears STREAMING down my cheeks, and my heart broken to the world, where I looked up and I said, "PLEASE, help me heal this, please give me an answer"
The wise voice inside of me said "Open your arms, throw back your head, and SMILE like you mean it.. and let the emotion flow"
So I did. And after about 2 minutes of bawling and holding a forced Duchenne Smile, I had my first JoyGasm. The huge surge of energy that was my sorrow, and anger and hatred, broke through to the other side, and I was connected, fully and completely to the bliss that is infinite possibilities, and my body felt FANTASTIC.
I rode the wave for I don't know how long, and then wondered WHAT THE HECK JUST HAPPENED TO ME. JoyGasm was the answer from above, and I learned from then on, that I could access beautiful states of bliss through a little focus, and a specific set of postures.
I hit my upper limit. I couldn't handle being that happy. Not for more than 2 minutes a a time. But the practice of Joy would see me through the worst of it, and give me something to cling to. Hope.
I was still chronically miserable, but I didn't want to be anymore, and this gave me some hope. I built my own personal development program for myself, a system of re-programming my brain to un-fuck-ify it from everything that had happened. And over time I found my Joy again.
The connection felt was so strong, so powerful, and the transformation I experienced SO powerful, that I knew I had to share it. I spent 9 months of "pursuing my dream" of sharing my JoyGasm work, I had had about 8-12 people show up to each of my events, some of them over and over again, I had a couple of 1 on 1 clients, and made about $5000 (over 9 months) and was burnt OUT as a workshop facilitator, and I still wasn't supporting myself financially, or really reaching as many people as I wanted with my message.
And people kept contacting me about freaking WEB DESIGN. I'd told them all to GO AWAY in the process of teaching the JoyGasm classes. I didn't want to do that stinking design anymore, I wanted to teach tantra and follow my passion. SURE that meant, I'd taken a part time job driving a school bus (even LESS my destiny! omg). But like my stupid day job I wanted to quit and never go back to, design had tortured me during the depression years.
I had an aha moment. That I had an ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP WITH MY BUSINESS TOO! And then one day, when I knew it was time for change. I got a card at a networking event that said to me:
"Put your focus on ONE business,
and see the dramatically different results you get."
You can't be afraid to Re-Invent Yourself.
Everyone I had met over the last 9 months new me as "The JoyGasm Queen".
But I needed to get my head above water financially,
and so I put it to the universe, and said:
"LOOK, YOU show me the money, if it's in design, I'll do design.
If it's in JoyGasm, I'll do that.
Show me the way by the time my stinking job ends for the summer in June."
By June I had my biggest month EVER in design,
netting more in one month than I had made in the entire previous YEAR.
So after 3 years of "sort of" running one or two businesses, with 6 major crashouts that happened along side 6 major breakups/moving houses/countries etc. I took it into my own hands to heal not only my messed up head, but also to get my feet under myself for good, and build myself a business. I said to myself, "Focus on ONE business" (oh it was tough), and I set about creating the kind of design company that would Evolve Humanity, would make the world a better place, that I would want to be proud of owning and have people I trusted to do the stuff I didn't like doing. If I was going to do it, I was going to build the freaking empire! I kept at my JoyGasm practice on my own, and used it to fuel my passion, fire and creativity. I watched as magic unfolded before my eyes, with client after client finding ME, and asking to do work beyond what I had expected. I had found my Magnetic Message.
AND I couldn't put the energy work and personal development down. Not completely. I was working with conscious entrepreneurs, people pursuing THEIR destines, and they would get stuck, caught in self sabotage, personal stories and patterns, and I saw that the design work I did for them, was equally important, as the inner work they were doing (or not doing) on themselves, and I created that as part of what we would do together. Inquiry and story work, energy clearing and breaking the bubble of the vision. The art of being magnetic and attractive to potential clients was something they had learned already, and needed to shake something up, do something different, and engage the magic to take their businesses to the next level.
In the last year, we've launched 9 major events, 2 Expos, 2 online membership programs, and a best selling book. And best of all, have created some AMAZING transparent and loving relationships with clients who I never dreamed would work with little old me. I've added 4 more people to the team, and we are now offering a WAY bette service than I ever did solo. We've also launched EvolvingHumanity's flagship website builder and eCourse Claim Your Magnetic Message, and The JoyGasmic Path.
After a year of doing that, I'm happily living in Bali with my son, 2 helpers, and working with world class leaders to create the Sacred Sexuality positive Awakened Woman Conference, EverySingleMother
Questions that People Ask ME Often
1. What is your intention behind the work that you do?
My intention is for people to feel proud and confident to share their message in the world. It is to provide guidance and LOVE to people who are doing great work in the world. And to help facilitate the flow of work, to have the tasks that are holding back progress taken care of, now.
My intention is to catalyze each client from one world/timeline/reality to another where they are more prosperous, relaxed and supported. My intention is to create a feeling of excitement in the vision, and relaxation in the "hows" and "gotta do's"
My intention is to help people define, and then follow their destinies to create a quantum effect of speed and ease in the awakening of the human species. It is to be in the never ending and ever more glorious mission of Evolving Humanity.
Thank you for asking. I've never said it so well.
2. What is it like to carry a last name: "Harder"
It's been an interesting journey.
1. The obvious "do me harder" joke. I hated it. Jr High was hard. :) I resented my last name for years. Recently I came into my true family, and found community with the Tantra world, now it's finally a joke that I can laugh at too. Now I love it. I think it fits beautifully in my journey with sharing the Tantic Life that is The JoyGasmic Path. I can see the perfection of it.
2. Another meaning. "Harder = more hard" It's perfect. I push harder, I ask for more, I push myself harder in everything that I do. Excelling? Excell more! Love, Love more. harder.. This edge pushing out of the box thinking has always been a part of me. Comes with the indigo nature.
3. Historically. Harder is a German last name, that comes from Hearder Herder. My ancestors way back herded sheep and earned this name. Even more appropriately, I have Mennonite pastors on several of my ancestor lines, and a strong line of shamans from my fathers mother's side, so my family is literally one of those leading the way, herding the people, in the way of love of Jesus. (ask me about Jesus later when you have some time)
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Favorite Moments in My Work
- Holding a Book I designed the cover of and helped launch.
- The moment when my client cries when they see the design we co-created.
- Taking 20+ hours of monotonous work off of someones plate, and giving it to someone who LOVES doing that stuff.
- Automation.. Happy Dance!
- That moment, where i see a client stuck in a story, I share that with them, and then we un-stuck them. :) Into bigger possibilities.
- The little inside jokes that happen between all those emails with clients. :)
Things you didn't know...
- Committed Digital Nomad with 4 out of the last 6 winters spent in tropical paradise!
- Now Happy Mom to 4 year old (bilingual) Alex :)
- I love Heinlein (Stranger and Time Enough For Love), Abraham Hicks, and Anne McCaffrey as all time favorite authors, I could read over and over and over again.
- Sandcastles make me incredibly happy.
- FightClub, still one of the most influential movies of all time in my life. That and Princess Bride, and Never Ending Story and The Dark Crystal.. (oh yes being a kid in the 90's had it's perks!)
- I'm planning on living to be at least 300 years old. Healthy, Happy and Hot the whole time. :) hehe
- Bali, Morocco and Spain/Europe are my next big trips. :)
- I dropped out of Art College after year 1 to "go make my way as an artist" so I went to Australia. :) and fell in love with the idea of never seeing snow again.
- I love altars, they make me incredibly ridiculously happy.
- I used to say I loved everyone, except for intolerant people. After YEARS of work on it, I have found compassion and understanding for intolerant people. Most days.
- The longest continuous laugh I've ever sustained was 14 minutes. It was epic.
Among my friends, I was always the one with the crazy outlandish idea.
The one who wanted to push the edges of what we were doing,
and then push them some more.