On the podcast today we are joined by Mika Newton, Bahar’s first-ever client when she became a lawyer. Mika has been a professional singer since she was 15 in the Ukraine and was a very popular artist in her home country. She then competed at the 2011 Eurovision Contest, in which 43 countries participated, and came in fourth out of 25 finalists. After her win and at the height of her career in Europe, she decided that she wanted to pursue her dream in the United States. While many advised against it, she followed her intuition to California and, since moving here, she has been acting, modeling, and working with some of the world’s biggest brands, such as McDonald’s and Apple. In this episode, Mika tells the story that brought her and Bahar together – and it’s stranger than you think! She also shares her experience of learning about the law, and the vast differences between the perceptions of the legal system in Ukraine versus the US. Mika and Bahar discuss their experiences of being women in the music and legal industries, and Mika laments her attitude early on in her career and describes how it felt when she was diagnosed with cancer, including how she overcame it. Her story illustrates the importance of standing up for yourself, doing your research, owning your femininity, finding a work-life balance, and listening to your body, as well as the power of positivity! Tune in today to find out more.
Key Points From This Episode:
Mika explains how it was actually her dog, Mozart, that was Bahar’s first client.
Why it was difficult for Mika to understand the law when she first moved to the US.
Being sued, getting served, and being part of a lawsuit that lasted over a year.
We hear a sample of Mika’s music, which made her so popular in her home country.
How Mika discovered acting when she arrived in the US.
Mika asks Bahar when she knew that she wanted to be a lawyer.
Wanting to be a singer when everyone else wanted to be lawyers and doctors.
Mika’s first experience with the law was her first contract with a producer when she was 15.
Moving to Kiev on her own at 15, learning Russian, and recording her first album.
Mika and Bahar share their experiences of being women and owning their femininity in the music industry and the legal system.
Rethinking her previous attitudes towards money and the space she took up.
The moment Mika discovered she had stage 4 ovarian cancer and how she managed it.
Working through her pain and then learning work-life balance and prioritizing both her mental and physical health.
The importance of listening to your body and paying attention to how you feel.
The hardest part of Mika’s journey was being present instead of obsessively planning.
Mika’s seemingly cheesy advice is to live your life with love and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
“No one really teaches us. No one tells you, ‘Read the contract.’ I signed the contract because I was so excited. You don’t have lawyers. Here [in the US] it’s like, if you’re getting into something, you hire a lawyer. In Ukraine, it’s just, ‘Well, let me read it myself.’ We don’t have that knowledge that it’s very serious and you have to protect yourself. You just get excited and you want to sign anything they give you.” – @MikaNewton [0:12:50]
“I just want all women to stop trying to fit in. I think that’s the hardest. I had to play the roles [that were expected of me].” – @MikaNewton [0:23:50]
“Everything amazing always comes from that place of unknown and, in that place of unknown, you can always fall into fear, worry, and negativity, and spend that time getting sucked into this tornado that you can’t get out of, that is not healthy for you. The biggest lesson is coming through with that mindset and being Miss Positive.” — @baharansarilaw [0:46:59]
“I know it’s sounding super cheesy, live your life with love, but I think it’s the only way, because no one can help you. When someone knows that you’re going through a tough time, whatever you’re going through, we need to be aware that everyone doesn’t know what to talk to you about.” – @MikaNewton [0:51:57]
Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode: