Logan: Let’s start. I’m in Berkeley. My quarantine has been spent with like five roommates. I got this big space I live in like an artist cooperative called Lumen labs. Then my brother flew out from New York.
Meredith: I want to talk a little bit about you. This is the first time we’re doing anything like this is the total experiment—given—but I did write up some things that I want to talk about. The first thing I want to talk about is you, Logan. I’m gonna give a quick background about my experience of Logan which is that we met while working at a crazy startup called Outdoorsy. Now I say crazy startup because they all are. Nothing against outdoorsy specifically. It’s the Airbnb of RVs so it’s a place where you can rent an RV or rent out your RV. I liked Logan immediately (given) but one of the things that it stood out about Logan in particular is he’s a community builder. Tell me about tell me your story in your words Logan.
Logan: Before there was a job more common job function called community manager, and I rejected that job function. I was like in boot camps and reading everything I could about growth marketing and retention and engagement because I wanted to have an impact in the startup I didn’t want to be handling support staff. Although now it’s like oh when we we need people to run campaigns, engage people, like identify the best users and bring in like bring them in for products and testing and all the end now like be frontline support for mental health crisis and like be a communications expert for handling unweaving like unweaving systemic racism that is happening inside of our communities that’s all the function of a community manager now. Make sure we’re getting ROI on our community. Make sure that people are being engaged and the retaining and more people are our people were in our community or having a much better experience than people who don’t join it and all of that. So I’m happy to call myself a community manager now. Outdoorsy was kind of the first place that I legitimized it
Meredith: Even in Outdoorsy you were one foot growth. I feel like you were always like growth.
Logan: I had to get in the door so I told them their email was bad. And we built (actually you built it Meredith) a Facebook group for Outdoorsy. Like a lot of people who work with Facebook groups it’s intended for a specific thing and it’s not intended for you’re not supposed to be able to start a Facebook group and they get all the user data that’s in the Facebook group but we were we did have these users there’s a Facebook group or owners RV owners and so we were going to start this like long-term relationship with them we need to build a lot of trust with them to get them to hand over the keys to somebody else because we told them that was a requires a lot of a lot of trust and a sense of security if you’re an RV owner you know anybody you’ll know that like these are like babies these are like precious this is like like for someone to be like baby RV dog. We really had to build a lot of trust and I was sending a lot of feedback to the Facebook team I jumped into I talked my way to one of the community programs for group admins and I was and I was trying to navigate that space and I made friends with other people in the space who were also using Facebook groups so we can kind of share ideas and information and and yeah one of those people (shout out to Susie Nelson she is was a community manager at digital marketer comm then was hired as a community strategist at Facebook and then referred me in I think) cuz we sneakily joined each other’s Facebook groups and learn from each other. So yeah well you’ve always been a community pioneer.
Meredith: I feel like you’re one of the only people who really takes it seriously like even the fact that you were like let’s try to do this podcast Meredith. Let’s see how this goes. I think you should do this one zoom. Let’s record it. You are always pushing for community and I really appreciate that about you.
Logan: I really happy to be here but shout out like if anybody from the community is listening and can follow up in the wonderful Beautiful Voyager Slack group of which I’ve been a community member for a couple years. Now we can do some questions follow up with the QA and and maybe have like some some peer-to-peer conversation with the other wonderful lighthouse.
Meredith: When did you first find beautiful Voyager? Did you think of yourself as a lighthouse for others at that point ?
Logan: I first found beautiful voyager because I was very interested in what Meredith was doing — what you were doing post Outdoorsy. You were already starting to build Beautiful Voyager while you were there. I remember being like “Meredith you’re just like such a unicorn and you gotta find the perfect spot” and so I was thinking of spots for you. I joined your community and was introducing you to people and and programs and opportunities. I realized you have to take your time. I joined it and I got a lot of value out of it even there even though I’m in terms of my habits and maybe more lurker I love it though I mean I love that you get something out of it just from lurking yeah. it’s helpful to know that there’s something out there that’s helpful it’s always there I think one of the biggest strengths of the community is it’s always there like if something is going I find some people are quiet for years and then all of a sudden they’ll have a question. This podcast may be a place where when someone comes on they have something they really wanted to talk about that they haven’t been able to figure out where to talk about it otherwise. We can we can take a topic and run with it. When this first happened I was in my job at Facebook. I work with programs or community leaders so I’m managing these Facebook groups for communicators a lot of the way that they learn as anybody can. Community leaders learn from each other. Like you’ll see how somebody models behavior how they respond to something and that you’ll sort of experiment with and try that voice so it’s really important to bring these simulators together really important to model behavior one of the early things that we sort of recognized with the social distancing in place was that there’d be incredible effects on people’s mental health. That were sort of unseen it was like seeing it as like a second epidemic that was coming was the epidemic of loneliness and epidemic of people running out of not having as much access to the mental health services. I work at Facebook I’m also one of the first ones to say that there are negative effects of just scrolling and reading Facebook or any kind of media any kind of newsfeed scroll for like more than thirty minutes is going to affect you and I’m also very tired at the end of the like a day of zoom meeting.
One thing I was thinking about is how do we how do we manage mental health in this time? How may look wellness around like emotional energy and energy around purpose and our energy around like our physical health and what that looks like now.
Meredith: I’m also very interested in like how we can have conversations now.
We’re in a double-double social upheaval of of our norms the second one being this social unrest that came about of the like the murders of members of the black community that and right now I’m I’m looking at into a lot of communities and I’m just seeing that a lot of people are feeling unsafe on both ends. How do we have conversations without safety? How do we get more comfortable being uncomfortable so we can start having these conversations?
Meredith: Those are each such meaty areas. At Facebook have are you connected to other people talking about mental health on the inside? I know you’re a voice of that but is it very grassroots how people like find each other? I say this working at a tech company myself where it’s grassroots. You know those of us building community internally. I’m just curious if that’s similar.
Logan: It’s not that revolutionary to talk about mental health inside Facebook. People are pretty aware. I I think of Facebook is like a pretty conscientious org. Like they keep hammering in that you’ll bring your whole self to work. There’s a lot of trainings in place about and a lot of opportunities available to find the common kind of conversations that you’re looking. Which is surprising because Facebook is huge. There are like very smart people who realize that our job is focused on leading teams, building teams around loneliness and mental health, and depolarization at Facebook.
Meredith: And do you check in with that like I would imagine that the things you’re doing are important with them as well yeah because you’re talking about these conversations and how do you facilitate these conversations we’re finding we’re finding opportunities together to sort of overlap and I think everybody is looking very closely at what group leaders are doing Facebook’s mission statement is changed like five or five years ago to focus on communities rather than just connecting people but giving them the power to build community and yeah I it’s rarely a problem of having access to the right kind of conversations or getting the right resources I think that the interesting thing about being at Facebook or Pinterest is that when you’re working with this many users you’re you’re sort of solving problems as if you were like it in the ears if you were like a civic servant for something now you’re that’s so well put that is so well put that’s so true yeah people right can you just change this in the platform it’s like my gosh like there’s there’s policy teams there’s content teams there’s how do we have when you roll something out you’re rolling it out to a lot of different types of people even in talking about you know content we’re always having to think of how language works in different places around the world and you know it’s it’s it’s a very scaled operation yeah I think there’s a there is a real opportunity right now with what’s happening there’s with each time there’s the there was first the Kobe crisis and now this crisis of for Humanity and doing the right thing for community there’s a real opportunity right now to present idea build teams get them prioritized and get things done and and also everyone with as I’m sure you’ve heard around the news with Facebook everyone has realized that they’re not only just part of a product a company that builds product but also a company that has enforces policies and we have to be aware of how those policies affect people and how and Brielle’s and like that act of being aware of how policies affect people it’s like there’s a long road to being truly aware of all the different voices that are being represented on the platform the different experiences it must be so hard logan to speak on Facebook’s behalf it is doing something like I feel yeah I mean I feel you in the most empathetic way like you I know that you’re working for good and I know that you mean everything that you say about building community and getting people to connect with each other and communicate and you’re in such a polarized environment around even the topic of your workplace I mean that just that’s hard I’ve had some I think there’s I think that that the experience of looking at news and social media and reading things is very disorienting right now and I think that there’s a long way to go with that I think social media itself is very new we’re like in the second ending of a nine inning ballgame of that we’re just we’ve got a long way to go having given everyone a voice and a platform and connected people now what and I think we don’t really know as a society we don’t know where she look like I get a lot of feedback that’s like oh Facebook’s been messing up I’ve written read about it the news is like all right like I’ve give me you’re like let’s have a conversation about yeah and I I yeah it’s it’s it’s hard because I think that like the way that the way that like information and is like hitting our brains right now it’s like everyone kind of assumes that everyone already knows everything and I see that also like when there’s these debates being had about what is the truth about police brutality and systemic racism it’s like everyone has information as seemingly has access to all of the facts but and all the literature and so there’s like makes dialog hard because it’s like everyone should this seems that everyone should know everything people come into conversations with me and be like oh now that we both have established that like Facebook is a rotten company and everyone should delete their accounts or something and I think well how do we how do we have a conversation that’s sort of like it includes like the good and the bad what you’re saying really resonates with me I mean I really feel like there’s we have like more information than ever but a layer of assumption that is thicker than ever – and it’s not like the information is cleared up thinking yet we’re still learning how to process that information and communicate with each other if you could wave a magic wand and have something change I don’t even know if this is possible around community building or communication at Facebook or outside of Facebook what would it be yeah I’ll talk in general I think that the power of a good Community Builder good community leader is like so overwhelms any kind of like tools or policy or even like the subject matter that they’re working on it’s like if you have somebody who is just like truly has that’s kind of spirit it has that like goal of connecting people and making them feel safe and helping encourage whatever transformations that come from people individuals when they’re in that kind of space you could be running a meme group about kitties and it is Trant it is like powerful they get like can you say more about what that mindset is like what what is the mindset that helps do that yeah it’s just like I think it starts with values or somebody somebody is like this is especially the values around like I am here as like a servant leader I’m connecting people my work is to connect people and to keep something safe to have these guidelines and to take feedback and to evolve them you are talking my language by the way I mean that is exactly how I think of like what my role is Oh beautiful and beautiful and beautiful ship Voyager in beautiful Voyager but also you know I established the first mental health ERG at Pinterest and I’ve really it’s it’s brought me a lot of joy to as things are getting so difficult especially through the protest to feel like I understand my role and it’s exactly as you just described mmm so we just did like a mental health meeting along with the blackboard group at Pinterest and I just felt a lot of clarity around my role yeah and that’s key sometimes I’m like within the last couple of weeks I’m like oh man do I speak up am I getting a little paralyzed like what if I say the wrong thing what if I everyone feels that way yeah and like if I say too much I’m too forward forthright am i trying to absolve the guilt and shame that I feel yeah am I like should I check in with pocs but I don’t want to put my motional labor on them should I know I know but I looks at my rolodex for the most woke person I know I will paralyze but then like when something is something happens in one of my communities I have these principles I have the value of what is it is what what is this I look through that it’s Siddhant record of incidents and the convert dialogue and I was like what is taxing to safety what is and what is what do we need to have in order to not just do conflict resolution not just solve the problem but get back to like friendly relations it’s like reconciliation and yeah so I feel like I have commute as a community leader like relating to you what you said it’s like you have a role and taking action helps me so much and feeling like I can have a positive impact based on my role so I totally feel yeah this is a hard question because I feel like the answer might be now do you think of yourself as an over-thinker yes oh okay surprised I even told them column and I’m like it’s always like oh really like you know what’s happening inside of me right now it doesn’t surprise me because all the people that I’m drawn to tend to be everything that makes sense um Enneagram is helpful for me I’ve been working with a coach that refers to the enemy we established where I was on the Enneagram really fast which one which one are you I’m a seven okay one who is I can associate new ideas very easily I’m going in different directions to I get like once I stop having fun with stuff then I start to get antsy and I want to like drop it and that was useful because it’s like the work there is like grounding into principles like not getting super flighty because it’s exhausting hmm and it exhausts me too when I’m like I started like not even listen to myself when someone’s like what’s your opinion on this is like man I don’t want to like start in a new direction or I don’t want to just come up with a new idea because it doesn’t mean we’re gonna exit on it a lot of flats are like that too it’s like I realize I could always have like a creative solution to something or you ask a question you get down to a question your start getting answers in it in your own like when practicing mindfulness if you bring in attention and you start I can start getting like a lot of ideas information it’s like yeah yeah it’s exhausting because it’s like nothing can give you grounding
yeah I am journaling you yeah so you touched on this Oh journal I said what are some of your tips for your own managing your own overthinking it sounds like meditation journaling I have really enjoyed guided meditation of I bounced between the headspace app and the waking up app I’m Sam Harris yeah it’s great um they’re both great yeah I like it I really learn a lot from both of both of them because one is considered the headspace app is kind of like a mix of like body scan and the pasta and the headspace app kind of I like I like that it’s a little meta it kind of shows you tells you what you’re doing is you’re doing it mm-hmm and it can kind of trust that and also I think that I’ve learned that like guided meditation is probably good for my undiagnosed ADHD mmm though I’m sticking with sticking with that for now and then the next
next thing I think is just bringing sort of like slow like giving myself opportunities to slow down and doing that as a practice like before I enter like my wake up what’s going on checking all my stuff I like observe how I’m feeling right before I do that and observe like Oh am I feeling anxious am I feeling like shame I noticed that a lot of times I’m looking at news and stuff I’m trying to find the news that is gonna make me feel the most shame so I can remind myself and I’m a good person yeah I can feel so horrible about the news and stuff and not that dunk that I’m ready to change that right away or just having that observation but just knowing that that’s what I’m doing and that’s something to be aware of yeah I was gonna ask if the if the awareness of that state changes the behavior it sounds like not yet but it might I mean I like to think it does i think it’s i think that like deciding that you’re going to playing with this idea that deciding that you’re just going to change a behavior because you want to is not exactly is not even as effective of being aware of your willingness to change them mmm yeah like a peeper where they’re like man where does my i have a value that wants to be better and then above that I have this tendency this pattern that I was still doing the thing and you sort of like bringing compassion for yourself in that way because I was
it’s easy to feel bad about like that you want to change but it’s not able to change right away to like do a habit for a few days but you haven’t you’re not like you kind of lose the thread and then you lose it and then you you think that you’re you don’t have integrity or something that was happened to me a lot and who are some of your favorite um sort of like I don’t want to say philosophers but you’re in the habit world I are you like a habit builder person and who do you read and follow in that yeah I like James clear he’s amazing by the way I mean that weekly email oh my three things every time I’m with every not talked about this it’s amazing I don’t think we’ve talked about it he’s Columbus Ohio I think well you know you know a lot about James clear well I wrote him once I first got his email I was like this is incredible I need to meet this guy’s in Columbus Ohio my brother lives there I wrote him and he’s like I’m a little busy I didn’t realize he’s super famous he was so nice to write me back he’s like I’m a little busy and then I realize like I was like he’s like a huge by selling off it was sweet actually I like that I like taking I got a shout out this class I’m doing right now from Carolyn Elliot she is the author of existential kink and she encourages these habits like waking up pulling a tarot card writing it down and then looking for like how that tarot card will like rhyme with throughout the day and then at the end of it like just being like oh I didn’t know what the morning but here’s the ways that my day was kind of like the ten the five of swords like that it’s kind of like loosening your brain yeah like a brain fun I like it yeah I like it cuz it’s not necessarily saying this is the habit that will be helpful for you first it’s more like you said it’s like looser it’s like you do the thing and then you reflect on it later you were super cool or build a habit of reflection well yeah and you’re building a habit of like new pathways in your brain new more playful pathways it sounds like my last question in the podcast format that you and I have is what is your latest 1d win and before you answer I just want to explain that 1d win is short for wonderful win it was named by a very long-standing member of the beautiful Voyager slack community and I thought I thought I knew he lived in Stockholm but I thought he was British but he’s like 1d is not British Arab he’s of an Arab descent but lives in Stockholm but anyway so 1d wine what’s your favorite what’s your favorite one be one a wonderful win and it could be personal or it could be it could be anything and it’s something that happened recently that you’re like had that felt good I hmm we had a is my brother’s birthday the other day right I think my mom likes to create rituals routines we so she’s trying to start to create a family ritual where on birthdays we say what’s something we like about the person and it was nice as I just spent all this time with my brother and I was able to share with him that I see that he’s having to be very strong now these he’s an actor out of we can’t work and can’t be passion about what he’s passionate about and I was able to share that with his friends and it’s just like that moment of like we’ve said before just like being able to feel like you have something important to add being able to be of service like help me feel better – and also summarize this time that you invested in like building your relationship with him right now yeah because of co-ed we’re where is he an actor where’s he in LA normally weird since he’s in New York City normally yeah he just uh I’ll share this later he got he was cast in this like he’s like breakthrough role perhaps in this play that was gonna be off-broadway that was by the Jeremy o Harris who was the playwright for race race play and it was this he’s gonna win Jeremy Harris was surely gonna win some Tony’s and then Connor my brother was going to appear in this play the same week of the Tony Awards and now that’s all been deferred and and so he’s just like like I have to wait I have to wait for my dream to come back yeah so hard it’s so hard this so hard Connor I cannot wait for you to be famous yeah I’m so excited for when your dream does the world will be a better place the world will totally be a better place any final thoughts this was amazing I feel like I learned so much about you that makes me so happy oh I’m happy too that’s how what is it what is what inspired you to do a podcast what’s your dream for it well I I’ve I’ve been such an avid podcast consumer for so long I actually started listening to audio books when they were tapes in the year 2000 and they would be sent in a box to me in New York and you’d get like 14 tapes and it was books on tape but what I always really wanted was conversation it was like I was waiting for podcasts to be born and when they were I listened to more podcasts than anyone I know like I have like 30 podcast or 40 podcasts that are I’m a regular listener of so I listened to a lot of podcasts Oh usually for walks mmm and I do this this weird massage bed or how it’s called the meegan bed it’s like this South Korean jade Ball super hot anyway I love it and that and so I always listen to it I’m on that and but they’re just these different times of the day and you know sometimes if I’m just like trying to relax my eyes I’ll just like lay I’m listening to podcasts it’s just like a it’s almost compulsive because I listen to so many but you know we have those parts of ourselves so so you know I’ve always been such a consumer and I want to have conversations but I kind of like writing like I never thought I had anything that’s special to a door that different but enough people lately since my book came out and I was doing podcast interviews I did seven podcast interviews and I really loved them and then people would listen to them and say please try to do a podcast do if I could so since you helped me figure out a format I figure why not try it this is wonderful I’d love to inspiring inspiring more podcasters out there I’m sure I hope so you’re inspired and you have a great voice for podcasting yes I thank you I had been told that before I have an actor friend who always says you need to be doing voice work Meredith which I see is I’m you know a major compliment so yeah I feel like compliments about voice is like something something hits deep about them like if your compliment like oh you have like such beautiful like eyes really I’m suspicious like what do you mean superficial that’s superficial but if you’re like I really feel like you have a calming and soothing pearlescent voice
somebody once said I forget where this quote came from but it was something like people don’t remember the things you said in a conversation but they remember how you made them feel and that’s my Angelou thank you thank you and that is something I think about a lot is that you know I used to be really stuck on like the exact did I say the exact right thing did I say it the right way and now I’m like you know what people remember is how you how you made them feel yeah yeah I don’t remember we’re talking about just now compliments yeah um thank you so much Logan I loved having you as my first guest oh let’s we can I’m I’m glad to be here at the beginning it’ll be fun looking back on this later and seeing how far we’ve come I know I know me too yeah um bye dear thank you thank you