My dreams are slowly coming true
I dreamt of starting a coach training institute in India three years ago. That seemed so hard to do at the time. But now that our business is solidifying, something like this is possible...
When did you do your first training at The Coaching Institute and what was it like?
I did my first training with The Coaching Institute in June 2014, about 3 years ago. And it was mind blowing.
My mind wasn't in its place. I had never experienced a world like this.
At first, I thought this was "woo-woo" land. It was very heavy and at the same time, it was very pleasant. That was what my experience felt like!
Before your journey began, what were you doing then?
There wasn't much that I was doing in Australia. I had landed in Australia from India only 5 months ago.
Migrating to Australia was a step which was a part of me growing up. After I came here I realized there was something more.
This is not just moving to a new country and finding a good, Westerner's life. A westernized life is not what I wanted.
A mentor of mine in India had told me about NLP, so I started researching a lot and that's when The Coaching Institute showed up in my Facebook feed, so I signed up.
It wasn't just me, but my husband Akhilesh also joined.
He is still a member of the group. We both started at the Master Coach level, which was the highest level at the time.
“I wrote a book myself and realised I wanted people to discover their true genius and express themselves wholeheartedly, just like I did in my first book. "Want solution, there's always one" was my journey . . .”
What are you working on now?
We host book writing retreats in India and then help our clients grow their business through the books they write.
I chose this path after I wrote a book myself and realised I wanted people to discover their true genius and express themselves wholeheartedly, just like I did in my first book!
What was the book about?
"Want solution, there's always one". And that was my journey.
For a long time, I thought that someone else is meant to solve my problems.
And then I realized, if I really wanted to change things, like old patterns from the past, or if I really wanted to change anything in any area of my life, be it health, wealth or happiness, I had to do something about it.
I realised that the things which I let go of are the things that don't matter to me much.
Meanwhile, those that really matter, I persist at them and make stuff happen.
We take people to India for a 10 day retreat, we help them write their book and share their story.
We also support them to monetize their book. So we help them create their online course to upsell after selling the book.
What are some milestones or successful moments that you would like to share from the journey with The Coaching Institute? What are some things you are proud of?
This was almost one and a half year ago, I also did an interview with Matt Lavars when we bagged a contract for a multi-national company.
This was for a systems training delivery, but when I added basic elements of human behavior, the whole training became very powerful.
It was a $90K contract for 90 days. That was our first epic win.
The second one was when I made $20K in a week, alongside caring for a six-month-old baby.
I remember doing more coaching sessions in the first three months of having her than I had ever done before. I was coaching with her on my lap.
At times she was sleeping, at times she was latched to me, feeding, and at other times she was with my hubby or in-laws.
Not every time there was someone else available to look after her. But I still kept on conducting loads of coaching sessions and signed up clients while nursing my child.
Some clients knew of this and some had no idea. That was one key highlight.
"The most recent milestone was taking a leap of faith last year to launch this book retreat program. We have decided we are doing it twice every year. We are right now in India at the retreat in Dharamshala . . .”
Tell me more about your plans for the future and what aspirations do you have.
I cannot see too far away into the future but my plan for 2017 is to help 50 professionals from various walks of life write their books and create their courses.
I am also taking it to the next level by adding business coaching to this.
The authors are writing their book because they want to create a tangible product and I teach them how to sell it.
I give them extended hand-holding for 12 months during which we help them monetize their business to a minimum of 100K in 12 months.
This is what they can definitely achieve with the systems we have got in place.
Where do you want to take the retreat you have got? In your wildest dreams, if you have a magical wand, what would it all look like?
After completing FOCS, when Aki and I got back home to Adelaide, three years ago, we dreamt of starting a coach training institute in India!
That seemed so hard to do at the time, so we parked it to the side and totally forgot about it.
And now, when our business is solidifying, I am seeing people in India, who are studying coaching.
My friends who are coaches in India are reaching out to me a lot for support to get some motivation before their first few coaching sessions.
"This is the second time I have languaged our dream, so you never know where it goes. 10 years seems too far but in 5 years time, something like this is possible . . .”
Even with a baby?
Oh sure! She is my extra resource! She is an extra hand in the game.
And you never know there might be a couple more coming in the next few years!
Our team is definitely gonna get stronger!
What do you attribute most to your success?
I learned in Meta Dynamics™ 2 room to take 100 percent responsibility, but I would still like to add an element of gratitude to all the people who I have ever crossed paths with for helping me in various ways.
I can't discount the contribution of my parents in who I am today.
My husband -- he is my biggest supporter, he's got my back, and that's why I can face the front.
And of course not to forget, The Coaching Institute!
One more element I would like to add is a coach. I worked with a business coach.
A lot of us in the coaching industry choose not to work with coaches, which is ironical.
You are a coach, you think everyone needs a coach except you. So change that, and work with a coach if you want to grow.
If you were to go back to the beginning of the journey, before the retreat, before you did The Coaching Institute, before the baby and breakthroughs, what would you tell to yourself?
I'm not able to recall what advice I would need or I would give to myself, just before joining The Coaching Institute because that's such a short phase.
I think the moment I felt I was even slightly stable in Australia I made a big leap which was The Coaching Institute, which was 30K of investment.
It was a big thing with neither of us having a job and just going fully into the game.
What had you go? What was the belief you had in yourself in order to invest money?
The day we signed up for Foundations of Coaching Success at The Coaching Institute and got the starter pack, and we registered our business, we made one promise together.
I remember that evening and that conversation: "Aki, this is it, we are playing this game until it works out for us."
So I have talked about this thing in a couple of podcast interviews and I refer to it as a marriage.
"Yes, we are married, and we have got one relationship to look after, but this business is nothing less than a marriage, and marriages for me are eternal, they don't break. That's my belief . . .”
Going back to your question... I have had so many failures and so many bloopers in sales conversations.
I'm not saying I constantly took action, I have had bouts of passive engagement and doing everything even though things didn't turn out to work for me.
Right from the beginning, you will not be able to make sense of everything, and that's ok, be kind to yourself and allow yourself, your physiology and psychology to take as much time as it needs to come to that level of understanding.
I know some people who have secured paying clients between signing up and Foundations of Coaching Success.
So they say yes, I am a coach and I am doing coach training, I am studying coaching. They presented themselves with certainty and they had paying clients even before FOCS, even before they learned the grow model.
So wherever you are, it's alright, you'll get there easily.
It took me a year and a half to get my first paying client. But once that milestone was crossed, there has been no looking back!
Shilpa had just moved from India to Australia and then realized she wanted something more than a good, Westernized life. She had a vision of starting a coach training institute in India with her husband. As she and her husband progressed in their coaching journey, their dream became more and more realistic.