Career

Natasha Graziano Went From Being Homeless To Forbes’s Top Motivational Female Speaker Under 40—Here’s How

By Andrea Mew
·  10 min read
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If you take one look at Natasha Graziano, you see a woman who looks like she has it all figured out. She speaks with bright confidence, carries herself with polished poise, and has amassed 11.4 million followers on Instagram.

Forbes named her the “No. 1 Female Motivational Speaker Under 40,” she wrote a best-selling book, was featured in Marie Claire, Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Business Insider, The New York Times, BBC, and even had 27,000 people attend her wedding on the app Clubhouse, the first wedding to ever take place on the platform.

Without a doubt, Graziano has a magnetic personality, but both her personal charm and career success didn’t come without years of soul-searching and…breathing techniques? I’m nothing if not obsessed with learning about what makes people tick and how the most successful folks keep their lives so neatly buttoned up, so with her new book coming out, Be It Until You Become It: The Law of Attraction Explained Through Neuroscience and Ancient Wisdom, this month, I knew I needed to get the tea from Graziano on precisely how she became a duchess of dynamism. 

She Swears by Breathing Techniques

Graziano has developed her own mindfulness technique which she calls “Meditational Behavioural Synchronicity,” or MBS. She shared with me that in her youth, her parents sent her to a monastery to learn humility. This translated to cleaning toilets every day and other odd jobs that Graziano didn’t enjoy.

“I tried to escape my reality every day,” said Graziano on how she would regularly run away from the monastery, out into the mountains on a mission to find a bus stop.

Instead of finding a bus stop, she happened upon a man meditating. To Graziano, he looked like an ancient yogi: old, bearded, topless, with leathery skin from exposure to the elements. She observed him going through a breathing exercise and thought it seemed fascinating.

Every day moving forward, she would run into the old man. According to Graziano, she felt that the universe wanted her to watch this old man use his breathing to go into altered states. She began to learn pranayama breathing from the man whom Graziano had originally thought was 70 years old but was actually much older. He had learned pranayama techniques from his grandparents who had cherished them as an old, family medicinal tradition. 

Flash forward to six years ago, and Graziano was in the middle of a rough divorce right after she welcomed her son Rio into the world. Homeless and broke, Graziano came back to her family for support but found herself in very poor health.

“I was unwell and wasn’t in a good place, so I started meditating. But I realized if you have a really fast mind, meditation is very hard to do. So what I did was I wrote to him [the old man] and I said, ‘Can you help me with my breathing? Can you get on a video call?’”

Graziano recalled feeling like she was healing. She shared that she would close her laptop after video calls of deep guided meditations and continue to feel a deeper sense of awareness throughout her day. This mental reframing that started shifting her day-to-day life led her to develop the MBS method for her neuroscientific routes of manifestation so her practitioners could also develop long lasting positive mindsets and achieve their goals in life.

She Sticks to Her Morning and Night Routines

Graziano firmly believes that morning routines are the key to success and has always been fascinated by other people’s morning routines. In fact, she’s so dedicated to her morning routine that she even maintains it on the weekends.

“Morning routines either start your day, or they finish it,” stated Graziano.

Admit it, we’ve all been guilty of starting our day by checking our phones. Sometimes it’s because people work jobs that require them to be on-call at any moment, ready to put out metaphorical fires, but for others they scroll through notifications out of habit. Graziano shared that even she ends up checking her phone first thing in the morning on occasion but habitually makes a point of prioritizing herself first.

She feels that if she’s reading emails from people first thing in the morning, she’s not really doing it for herself, she’s instead doing someone else’s agenda in lieu of her own. To keep her own agenda at the front of her mind, Graziano keeps her phone in airplane mode and does a round of breathing exercises first thing in the morning. Though some of her breathing exercises are intense and “take you into a real high,” her morning breathing tends to be more pared back.

Graziano then follows up breathing with a regular meditation or a tea meditation where she sits with her tea and purposefully remains mindful of only the cup and her goals until she finishes the tea. Afterward, she might journal in reflection or she will journal projections about her week in the third-person as if it has already happened. These affirmations might read something like “Natasha had an incredible week, she just launched another product with another person and it reached 2,000 people on Monday and 20,000 by the end of the week.”

Next, Graziano will eat her first breakfast around 8:30 a.m., which will likely consist of a gluten-free chicken sandwich – she swears by protein in the morning – and fruit like papaya. Instead of coffee, she will sip on fresh herbal teas like sage, thyme, or ginger. After her morning yoga session, Graziano will have a second nutritious breakfast around 10:30 a.m.

Though she strives to regularly engage with her social media followers – as it’s a major part of her business – Graziano doesn’t allow herself to scroll through social media mindlessly. 

“I must engage with my followers, but I don’t see it as a chore, I see it as a privilege. So I choose a half hour in a day when I’m going to go and interact with people and that’s it! I have set times in my diary,” Graziano shared.

During the week, she only uses social media for very specific searches and needs. Instead, she uses a set amount of time on Saturday morning to catch up with whatever scrolling and, as she put it, Instagram stalking that she missed out on during the week. 

“You have to knock the habit out of yourself and the only way to knock the habit is to literally stop and say ‘I’m not going to allow myself the privilege of going through it anymore.’ Then, put the timer up,” she said.

After her work day, Graziano detoxes from the digital sphere by turning her phone on airplane mode around 5 or 6 p.m. “I go back to almost like hunter-gatherer days, you know, relaxing under the moonlight. I really just force myself to not be able to contact the outside world,” she said.

She Believes in Rising from the Ashes

Instead of submitting to chaos and allowing it to drag her down, Graziano feels that trials and tribulations are their own unique blessings. In her personal experience, she credits her homelessness and lowest moments with being the catalyst for positive change.

“Without having bad things happen, how do you know what good feels like? Furthermore, how can you evolve to be an incredible person if you do not grow from the bad times? You will only evolve when you go through something horrendous, and when you go through something that is bad, just know you are so blessed for that because on the other side of it is abundance,” she said.

When Graziano found success after years of manifesting her dreams and building herself back from the bottom up, she shared that she felt like a new person with a new lease on life. Now, she welcomes challenges as a way to feel more fulfilled.

“When we have good times, it all feels good. We still don’t feel fulfilled! We have all these amazing things happening, but why don’t we feel fulfilled? Because we feel like everything is good,” she said.

She Knew She Wanted Success, So She Made It Happen

Graziano shared with me that teenage Natasha envisioned that she would use her voice to do something meaningful in the world.

“She didn’t know she would go through the whirlwind she did, nor that she would go on to be the successful and motivational speaker that she is today. She just wanted to use her voice and didn’t know whether that would be through something like music, she had no idea what it entailed, but she knew she needed to be heard,” Graziano said.

On her podcast, Law of Attraction, Graziano details key mindset habits that she credits for achieving the life she dreamed of. Here’s the lowdown on her “five pillars” to achieving goals.

First, get clarity in your vision and have a crystal clear idea of what it is you want. Go forward with planning your vision by knowing the exact amount of people you want to influence by an exact date.

Next, remove any self-limiting beliefs that may be blocking you from feeling your best. To Graziano, she believes opportunities are always there, but you might just not be seeing them. Replace your old, self-limiting beliefs with new, positive beliefs. Graziano explained that our brain’s reticular activating system tends to show us things that we deem as important. That’s why it’s critical to focus your mind on positive things. She believes that there’s a detrimental power in always focusing on negatives like “I’m never going to make any money,” “I won’t attract a partner,” or “People don’t like me.” Instead, she insists you imprint a new belief system whether you believe it at first or not. That’s actually where she gets the title of her new book from; the idea of being it until you become it. 

Then, expand your vision. Graziano recommends trying visualization exercises like athletes do, such as running the race mentally before they physically do it. In this dress rehearsal, she says you should feel every single step. You can ask yourself things like “What does that new car feel like?” or “What’s the carpet like in your new home?” Rounding off this pillar, Graziano swears by surrounding yourself with people who have achieved the things that you want to achieve, or at least have the desire to achieve. She believes that you are the average of the people you spend your time with, so if you rub elbows with powerful people then your own power will, in turn, rise.

Lastly, Graziano insists that you take inspired action. If you feel excitement about something, she believes that you should just try to do it and get obsessed with the creative process and flow. She wraps up her pillars by explaining that if you get stuck in a bad mood, you can just as easily get stuck in a good mood.

Closing Thoughts

From a woman desperate for a mentor and source of inspiration to becoming a global influencer and thought leader spreading positivity on every platform she can get her hands on, Natasha Graziano has amassed a wealth of knowledge and advice on how to level up your life from nothing. If you have dreams or aspirations in the back of your mind which may feel unrealistic right now, take both solace and encouragement from Graziano’s story of emerging revitalized from even her darkest moments. 

You can choose to spearhead this change by starting your own journey through mindfulness classes, regular meditation, rigorous exercise, or practicing faith, or if you so choose, through coaching programs like Graziano’s MBS method and the methodologies detailed in her books. You might just stumble upon your own keys to becoming the best version of yourself.

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