We had the good fortune of connecting with Emily D. Baker and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Emily D., what’s one piece of conventional advice that you disagree with?
Respect the Hustle. I disagree with the conventional wisdom that in entrepreneurship, creative endeavors, and life, 24-7nonstop hustle is the key to success. You know, the thinking that you have to be obsessed with how you are making money, what your KPIs look like, and that if it isn’t non-stop, it isn’t enough. It’s only a recipe for personal disaster, and it’s an avoidance tactic. When you are working so much that there is nothing else in your life, you may not realize that there is nothing else in your life. Hustle isn’t a key to success or happiness; it’s a key to burnout. Our lives and work used to have natural boundaries that technology has eroded. Creating pauses, limits, and flow within your life is the true key to both success and longevity. Unfortunately, fighting against the tide of hustle takes a tremendous amount of energy; it’s easier to get swept away with the illusion that if you hustle hard enough, you will get there…wherever ‘there’ is. I have had lots of different versions of work, and I am most successful both in my career and with my family when I make sure that my life comes before my work and not the other way round.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
When I started Law School in my early 20’s, I never imagined that in my 40’s, I would be a full-time YouTube creator, host of a top Entertainment News podcast, and a legal analyst. I thought I would become a Deputy District Attorney, work there until I retired, and hopefully have a life in the spaces between… After ten years in my career, burnout became too much to overcome, and I shifted into entrepreneurship, a shift that unexpectedly led me to a full-time career as a YouTube streamer. Taking a step off the career path I worked so hard toward was tremendously difficult. When you leap from a stable career into entrepreneurship, figuring out what’s next is terrifying and exhilarating. I found that everything changed once I stopped working towards income goals and started working towards the life I wanted. We don’t talk about the fact that a successful career as a creative can’t be done alone. You need support—both personally and professionally. Actively building a support system is critical to being a successful creator. The upside of working as a creative is that there is so much opportunity to bring fun into work. I’ve built fun into how I work, who I work with, and the content I create. It is never too late to follow your fun, make a change, and live a life you love. Don’t be afraid to create a ‘job’ that doesn’t exist yet… says the former Deputy District Attorney turned pop culture legal analyst. Yes, watching Real Housewives is part of my job, and it’s a blast. If you think legal is boring, spend some time with my community, the Law Nerds, and take in a stream…it’s fun.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I grew up in Manhattan Beach, no visit to LA is complete without a trip to the South Bay. I love taking people to dinner with a view of the sunset over the ocean at The Strand House. During the day, there will be a trip to Becker’s Bakery for sandwiches, cookies, and a walk on the strand. Heading into Downtown LA to sightsee wouldn’t be complete without a trip to Kura and a walking tour of Little Tokyo. While not in LA, I always leave time for a day at Disneyland.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
A huge shoutout to my husband Dr. Bryan Baker. When we got married 20 years ago I was starting law school and dreaming of being a Deputy District Attorney. When 10 years into that career I decided to make a change he supported and encouraged me as I flung myself into the unknown of entrepreneurship. Then after several years into my own consulting business, I made a hard shift into being a full-time content creator, as we decided to move across the county in a pandemic he supported another massive shift. This has been a team effort, and I am so grateful he is in my corner.