Ep #136: $25K in a Quarter with Shawna Samuel

The Confident Coaches Podcast | $25K in a Quarter with Shawna Samuel

Are you ready to finally end the story that all your successes are a fluke? What if I told you that letting this narrative go is key to making $25K in a quarter?

My client and Advanced Certification in Feminist Coaching sister Shawna Samuel did exactly this. 

Shawna is a coach for working mothers struggling with work-life balance. Like many of us, she’s always been a “good girl” checkmark chaser who has often operated from pursuing A+ results in every realm of life, and she’s here to dive into how we’re reforming and unwinding the socialization we’ve been fed to create amazing new results in life and business.


Doors to the August round of the Path to $100K Mastermind are officially open! Click here to apply and let’s get you enrolled! 

The doors to Free to Paid Coach are officially open! If you’re ready to learn the foundational concepts of confidence that get you from being a free coach to a paid coach who makes six figures and beyond, join us right now! 


What You’ll Learn:
  • Shawna’s business experience in the six months before she joined the mastermind. 
  • What was coming up for Shawna when she was going through a month-long client lull.
  • The money results Shawna has created since starting her practice in April 2021. 
  • Why we have to end the narrative that our successes are a fluke. 
  • The biggest lie of the patriarchy that we’re both unwinding in our lives. 
  • How Shawna reached her goal of making $25K in a quarter. 
  • Why she was in a pit of despair, even when she hit her first five-figure month. 
  • Shawna’s go-to beliefs that she has developed to aid her growth. 
  • What creating self-safety has looked like for Shawna.


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Full Episode Transcript:

You are listening to episode 136 of The Confident Coaches Podcast, the one where you’re going to redefine safety and end the it’s a fluke story so you can make 25K in a quarter. Ooh, juicy, let’s go.

Welcome to The Confident Coaches Podcast, a place for creating the self-confidence you need to do your best work as a life coach. If you want to bring more boldness, more resilience, and more joy to your work, this is the place for you. I’m your host, Amy Latta. Let’s dive in.

Hello, coaches. I’m excited, as always. I’m always excited to talk to you guys, but it is another interview day, another one of my current mastermind clients, Shawna Samuel. And this conversation started in one lane and came full circle through another lane. And we both were feeling chills and getting very emotional in the second half of this conversation.

Here’s why I love Shawna so much. So we present very differently, but we have very similar brains. Oh my goodness do we have similar brains. In this interview you’re going to hear all about how these two reformed good girls are breaking how we were socialized in order to create truly amazing and new results in our business and also our lives.

Now, Shawna is very different in what she made in her first year as a coach is what I made in my fifth year as a coach. So maybe I go just a little bit slower than Shawna does in integrating this work. But she and I do talk about her first year in the life coaching business, this lull, this client lull that she was in before she joined the mastermind last October.

And then, this is the part that I really want everybody to lean into when you’re listening. How she made 5K in one month. Then zero the next month. And then she had her first five figure month in the following month.

And not just the up and down of those numbers, but how after she created the five figures, what happened. How that sent her actually into a pit of despair. So anybody who is waiting for results to feel better, this is for you. But the second half of the conversation, ooh boy.

So Shawna and I are actually certification sisters, we are in an advanced feminist coaching certification together. And the conversation that we have about how we were socialized, how we were check mark chasers, how we are both learning that it is actually safe to feel unsafe.

The second half of this conversation where we dive into what we’ve been learning in our certification and how it is showing up, not just in the mastermind that I offer, but in her coaching and in her life as a whole, this is where we are going here. This is where I want to know are you 100% on board with because it is groundbreaking and it will shake your core and it will propel you so far forward than anything else you’ve ever done.

Also, I want to note she mentioned that she’s not in the mastermind at this moment, she is but she isn’t. So Shawna was a member of the October 2021 round which ended in April. The next round available to her and those members isn’t until August. So I created this kind of in between program just for these five coaches that are moving from October into this next round of August.

So she is still technically a current client and a member of the August 2022 Path to 100K Mastermind. And after listening to her story of what is possible in just one quarter, in just one year, and how it’s possible for you too, I think you’re going to be a member too.  All right, so here’s my conversation with Shawna Samuel.

Amy: Okay, coaches, I’m so excited. I am getting ready to introduce you, you are about to meet Ms. Shawna Samuel. Shawna is a member of the mastermind. She started back in October, she’s coming back in this August round.

Shawna is a certified life coach, an expat living in Paris with her family. I just have to tell you right now, coaching her so fun because you can see Paris out her window. But more importantly, Shawna’s work in this world, she’s a coach for working mothers struggling with work life balance.

Shawna, welcome to The Confident Coaches Podcast. How are you?

Shawna: Thanks, Amy. I’m doing well and I am so excited to be here with you and all of your listeners. And they may have even heard Paris out of my window a few moments ago as the police and ambulances roar by.

Amy: Amazing. So listeners, you might hear a chubby Chihuahua because there’s kids coming in and out of the house. So you might hear dogs on this end, and Paris’s finest on Shawna’s end, it’s so fun. And I love so much, because I know there are so many working moms in this audience right here. I am a working mom in this audience right here.

I’m literally recording this podcast on the first Monday of summer vacation. I’ve got two teen boys in the house looking for something to do before their, you know, before camps and stuff start. So the work that you’re doing in this world, I know so many people in my audience right now are trying to solve this, how do I run my life coaching business while also run my life?

And even if you don’t have kids, I know plenty of single people in my life, but they just fill that time with something else. There’s always something filling that “free” time. So I think this conversation is going to be so helpful for so many people.

So let’s go ahead and dive in and just start with, let’s start with the good stuff that everybody always wants to know. Shawna is a relatively new coach, right? When did you start your coaching business?

Shawna: I started my coaching business just over a year ago. So I was certified as a coach in April of 2021, I opened my doors just after that. And I think I went into business building kind of thinking that I would send out an email to the people I knew saying, “Hey, I’m opening my doors as a coach,” and that suddenly I would just have a full practice of clients.

Amy: Why not, right?

Shawna: I know, why not? It didn’t quite happen like that. And fortunately I joined the mastermind and found you and now I’m in a very different place a year later.

Amy: Yeah, so tell me a little bit about that because the mastermind started in October. So what did you experience in those six months?

Shawna: So my background kind of coming into coaching is maybe a little bit different from some coaches in the sense that I had a very long career in corporate fortune 50 marketing organizations. I have an MBA from Yale, like I thought I had all the knowledge that one needed.

Amy: You got the cred, right?

Shawna: I got the cred, yeah.

Amy: Yeah, you have so much cred, got it.

Shawna: And so basically I went into opening my coaching business thinking all I really needed was a really good plan and just execute on things the way that I knew how to do. And that everything would start to happen. And in the beginning, I actually did have a little bit of success. Some people who had worked with me for free during my coach training were like, “Yes, I came to that webinar, it was fantastic. Let’s do this.”

But when it came to trying to build my business beyond, literally I had 25 people on my email list. So when it when it came to building my business beyond the 25 people on my email list, I felt like I kind of fell into a crater there.

And when I found your work and your mastermind it was at exactly the right time because I was like, I probably might be able to figure out how to get myself out of this crater on my own. But I felt like it would probably happen a lot more quickly and easier with some support.

And I actually don’t know if you remember our consult call when I was thinking of joining the mastermind because I said to you, I was like, “Amy, I don’t think I’m lacking confidence. I’m not even sure I need confidence or more confidence. I just want to feel like getting to 100K is inevitable and I don’t really feel that.” And you were like, “I can help you with that.”

Amy: Yes, I do. I love these little conversations, like these snippets from our consultations and you’re like, “I do remember.” I do remember Shawna not being 100% sure even by the end of the call if you were, because of that conversation of like – Listeners, at the time the mastermind was called Confident Coaches. It’s like I was leading with I’m going to teach you confidence.

And I do remember from our call you being like, “But is this the thing that I really need?” And I love that you took that leap because, can we talk about what you’ve created since April of 2021?

Shawna: Let’s do it.

Amy: All right. I’m going to let you tell the story, sister. All right, so your doors opened in April 2021. I do want to note for my listeners who are very hesitant and resistant to work with free clients first, you did work with free clients through your certification process.

It is something that I talk about in one of my two programs, Free To Paid Coach, the benefit of if you’ve never coached anyone the value of having those first free clients that just give you, “Oh, I can actually help people.”

So April 2021, doors are open. Like I can visualize you, and since you’re in Paris I have a very romanticized vision of you throwing open the shutters. Business is open. You had a couple of clients, so talk about what have you created since then in dollars and cents wise?

Shawna: Yeah, so in 2021 my first, not full year in business, but first calendar year in business I created just over 17K in dollars of revenue.

Amy: Okay, so good.

Shawna: It was good. And some of that was after starting the mastermind you ran a challenge one month and I was like, “Okay, I’m all in. Let’s do this.”

Amy: I remember.

Shawna: Yep.

Amy: Shawna is definitely a client that’s like, “Challenge? I’m on it.”

Shawna: And so we had this month of this challenge and then did the challenge, booked about 5K of revenue in that month. And then went into December and like didn’t have anybody. I was doing all the things, no revenue. But I was putting out lots of value, I had a lot of new stuff that I was putting out into the world. I just wasn’t signing anyone in December.

And then January rolled around and I started creating much more revenue. So in January I had my first five figure month. I had this goal for a long time of creating a 25K quarter, I did that this year. And so far this year I have created just above 38K in revenue. So I’ve more than doubled what I did in that first calendar year, and I’ve done it in less time.

Amy: So good. Okay, so I want to kind of take like a commentary here. In your very first year, which wasn’t even a full year, we’re talking nine months, you created 17k. This is outstanding. And I really want to put this into perspective for so many people that are listening right now, is that we hear stories of people who go and create 100K in their first year.

Or I just saw somebody in a, you know, I’m in a reinvention class with my mentors right now. And somebody created like 180K in their first year. And I’m thinking that’s astounding and that’s amazing. I created 18K in my fifth year.

And so what I want to share right now for everybody that’s listening, in your first year, it took me about five years to create what you created in your first year. And then we look at this other person that I just saw who created 10 times that much in their first year.

And I just want for a moment to normalize every single one of those numbers, that everybody will create different amounts. And I want us to marvel, I think it’s so beautiful. Like let’s marvel in all 17,000 of those American dollars that you created in nine months.

And if you created $17 in your first year, to really just like marvel in what we can create because as soon as we go to, “But it’s not enough, so and so just did this,” then it immediately can shut us down. And lots of stuff are going to shut us down because I want to talk about the 5K to the zero.

You know, the month of November you created 5K and then the very next month you created zero. And that was on my list of things to talk to you about because I remember coaching you through that time. And then 25K a quarter. So beautiful. That’s like really congratulations on you for showing up and getting the coaching that you need.

So let’s talk about in November 2021 I made a challenge, you went for it. You create a 5K in one month. This is your first year of business, right? You’ve created 12K in the whole entire rest of the year and 5k of that was from that one month. And then in December zero. All right, let’s talk about what came up for you during that time.

Shawna: Right? It felt like I was riding this roller coaster and not in the like pleasant hands in the air, let’s go for it way. It was like I felt like I was white knuckling it through most of that time.

And there are two things that you just said that I think really resonated. I think, one was this idea of there being some kind of external yardstick, that whatever I was doing never felt like enough. I was always like, “Oh, but someone else is doing more someone else is doing it better. I should be at this place right now.”

I was comparing to what I had been making in my corporate career and being like, “Well, should I just go back and get a corporate job?” I remember being coached on the idea that making six figures in a corporate job was easy. And in coaching it was hard. So there was a lot of this thinking going on about not being where I was supposed to be, not being happy where I was, wanting it to go faster.

And then the other thing, the big thing that kept coming up was this idea that it was a fluke. That whatever success that I had had, so converting my free clients to paid clients. Well, that must have been a fluke. Doing the 5K challenge in a month, when the next month came and there were crickets. I was like, “Well, that must have been a fluke. I can’t repeat that.”

So a lot of what I had to work on, especially going into this year, was the idea that it wasn’t a fluke.

Amy: Yeah, so let’s talk about that. When you are thinking it’s a fluke, what does that mean to you? Because I think a lot of times a lot of people think, “Oh, it’s a fluke”. And we think we know what that means, but I think it’s a fluke means different things to different people.

For you, when you were like, “Oh, this is a fluke,” what was really the thinking that was underneath fluke? I can’t create this again? I didn’t actually create it myself in the first place, what?

Shawna: It was both of those things and kind of depended on, like I feel like that thought was the soundtrack that was playing in my head. But it kind of meant different things depending on the day.

Amy: Okay.

Shawna: So on some days it was like, I don’t see how I created that so I don’t really see how I can repeat that. And then other days it was more like, well, I guess I got lucky there. But it’s not going to happen again like that.

Amy: Okay. What was the switch in your head, do you think that got you from, and you’re right. I think that’s important because I think it does. It’s a fluke is this blanket statement, I think, of a variety of individual thoughts that are just different enough.

And so I like this, like this noticing I don’t know how I created that so I don’t know how to repeat it. And that’s a big element of the mastermind, is replicating what’s working. Okay, you figure out what’s working, and then you replicate it. So if you have the thought, “I don’t know how I created this, I can’t possibly replicate it.” That’s a struggle.

And then just the I got lucky, which is a nuanced, which is a different way of I don’t know how I created this. Lady Luck must have played a hand. So what was the work that you had to go through with this fluke?

Shawna: So I’m going to answer this in two ways because I think the basic thought of this was a fluke, I’ve been able to get coached through the biggest pieces of that. And I think one of the things that I remember is that there was a moment where I was doing some peer coaching with Kaiya, one of my peers in the mastermind.

And when I went into my, “This is a fluke,” she put the brakes right on and started coaching me hard to really think about what I had created, how I created it, and how I was going to go out and be able to repeat that. And having her help me kind of take a look at what I was thinking and pick it apart, when it started to come up again I could be like, “Oh yeah, I’m doing that thing again.”

Amy: That thing again, yeah. We say that all the time here, like oh, just notice when you keep thinking, “Oh, I’m thinking that thing that I love to snuggle with all the time.”

Shawna: Totally. So I think having that support where my peers were just willing to call me out when they saw that coming up in my thinking helped me build the awareness of when it was happening.

Amy: Good.

Shawna: And now the sort of phase two of this, if you will, is that I notice that the thought still has ways that it shows up. It’s gotten a lot sneakier, but I’m much more onto myself. So, for example, I noticed recently that someone booked a consult, actually a couple people booked a consult “out of the blue” in May.

Amy: Oh yes, the out of the blue consults.

Shawna: And I noticed myself thinking about that, “Oh, that’s so weird. What’s going on here?” Just another flavor of like it’s a fluke, I didn’t really create this. So I think that the thought has gotten a little bit sneakier at times, but I’m so much more well equipped now to be able to see when it’s happening, shine a light on it and really take charge of my own thinking around stuff like that.

Amy: This is so good right here because I think you’re highlighting a couple things. A, once you work through the “it’s a fluke,” it keeps coming back. It just comes back in different flavors. And you said the thing that is what all of us are tasked at doing, which is really just bringing awareness.

Having somebody hold that mirror up and say, “When you think this, let’s really dismantle this. Is it true that you had nothing to do with how this money came in? Is it true that those consults, like you did nothing to help create them? What did you do?”

Because clearly somebody who is, what did you even say from the very beginning? I’m going to create a plan and I’m going to execute it. You are a planner and an executor.

Shawna: Yes.

Amy: You were a massively successful woman in your previous corporate life and now you’re suddenly like I have no idea how this happened. It’s like really?

Shawna: Yeah.

Amy: How is that not even remotely true? And then just when it keeps coming back up again. I think it’s so important for people to know that like, oh, it’s that old thought. Oh, that’s sneaky.

Shawna: Yeah. But it’s funny, I remember there was this moment where in the mastermind we were all getting a bit of a kick out of my brain because I was like, “Oh, yeah, I did create this result.” And then I was like, “It’s almost like our thoughts show up in our result line.” I know, they teach us that.

Amy: I know, right? The too long don’t read of like literally every single episode of like every single coaching conversation is like, wait a minute, are you saying my thoughts carry this? Exactly. It’s so funny.

Yeah, and I think this $5,000 in one month and then zero in another, and oh, it’s a fluke, I also think it’s important, this is another reminder of how you had the results. So many coaches are like, “If I had the result, then I’d believe I could do it.” And is that how that worked out for you?

Shawna: Not in the least. Oh my goodness. In fact, I think when I started to get the results it was such a jolt. I mean, I remember the week that I hit my first five figure month and you were coaching me on, I was in this pit of despair.

Amy: Pit of despair, five figure month.

Shawna: Yeah.

Amy: Put a pin in that one, my friends.

Shawna: Totally. I was thinking like maybe I should get out of the coaching business and apply to a job.

Amy: It’s funny to laugh now, but it was really real.

Shawna: It was real, yeah.

Amy: Again, now we’re talking about January when she had her first five figures in one month Shawna was needing to be coached out of the pit of despair.

Shawna: Yeah. And now I can look back on it and laugh, but at the time it was painful. It was super painful.

Amy: Why was it so painful?

Shawna: I think there were a couple things going on. And this is another one where like they teach you that you control your results, you’re in control. I’m like, “Oh, yeah, that’s real.”

The other thing that I was taught and felt like I had a theoretical understanding of but didn’t realize until it actually hit, I truly thought that once I had the results I would suddenly feel better, more confident. I would suddenly believe that 100K was inevitable in my coaching business. I was like I just need that result and then the belief will be there.

And when it wasn’t, I had to actually come to grips with the fact that my results were not what was going to create my thinking. That I had it all turned around.

Amy: Results are not going to create my thinking. And it’s funny, as you just even said a couple minutes ago, we theoretically understand that it’s the other way around. And how many of us are also secretly holding onto, “But really when I have the result then I’ll get to believe.” And you had the exact opposite.

Yeah, and let’s talk about that pit of despair that really comes from, oh, wait, this didn’t happen. So then what starts coming up? When you were really, like you were secretly thinking that 5K month, the confidence which will just be turn that baby on, now my results drive my thinking. And then you suddenly realized you still had all the doubt and all the uncertainty. What then came up for you?

Shawna: I think I came into the mastermind truly thinking that I just needed to follow a step by step plan. And that if my mind was kind of half managed it would be totally fine. I just needed the plan and needed to execute on the plan, and then I’d be golden.

So when I hit this point in January where I realized the results were coming and I still wasn’t believing, I was like, “Oh, I guess now I actually have to deal with managing my mind for real.”

Amy: Yeah.

Shawna: So it was like digging into a layer far deeper than what I had ever done in my self-coaching and being willing to just kind of question everything and create my own safety in this process.

Amy: You know I want to know more, sister. I literally just, like my hand just went to my heart. I got chills. Yes, tell me more about what that meant for you. What did that look like for you?

Shawna: Yeah, I think that it meant a couple of things. I think going into my coaching business overall, we talked about how I’m a planner, I just want to have the plan and execute against it. And I used that as kind of a Band-Aid on my sense of safety and certainty. That’s what I put my trust in when my belief was not there.

And so I started going back to the belief meter and just every day self-coaching around where I was on this belief meter, where there was possibility, where there was probability, what I needed to really believe to feel certain, to feel safe. Just even to feel a sense of like possibility in my results.

And so I remember just getting out my workbook, opening it up, and being like, “All right.” Like a good student I did all the exercises my first like two months. I was like, “I’ll just do all the exercises really fast. And then I’ll be so far ahead and ready to get everything done.” And then at this moment I was like, “Okay, now we open up the book for real and we do the work that we really need to be doing.” So it was painful, but it was super helpful.

Amy: So then it was the combination of, I love how you noted the good student in you was like, “Oh, I’m going to do the workbook and I’m going to get it done. I’m going to get an A+ on my workbook work.” But this reminds me of me in school where I did the work to get the grade, but I didn’t necessarily do the work to actually integrate and learn unless I was super passionate about it.

And I think this is what I’m, I’m seeing me in you in this moment of like, “Oh, I need to go back and now I need to actually do the work to integrate it and really learn from it from this place of where I am.” I think this is really important too in while I am always fine tuning tools and maybe introducing new coaching questions that get you there faster, but the basic process is still the same.

So now you know what it’s like to create 5K in a month, you know what it’s like to create over 10K in a month, 25K in a quarter Every time you hit these new numbers, these new goals, your brain is going to bring up, like we now know your pattern. And I think it’s really important for everybody to know that we all kind of have a pattern. Shawna’s is, “Oh, this is a fluke. I don’t know how I created this.” You are not the same person you were.

Shawna: Yeah.

Amy: So when you did it right out of the get go, you hadn’t created that 5K in a month yet, or I don’t know the exact timeline that you did the workbook. And then you’re a different person after you’ve created five figures in a month. It’s not the same work because we aren’t the same person.

Shawna: 100%.

Amy: Yes, and that’s so important. And I think also, you and I are, talking about self-safety you and I are actually not only is this a coach client relationship that you and I have, we’re also colleagues in an advanced certification program. Shawna and I are both in advanced certification for feminist coaching and self-safety has come up there too.

And I know that as the listeners are listening to this, if anybody, you know, I’ve been talking a lot more about patriarchy, I’ve been talking a lot more about institutional norms, societal norms, socialization, you know, more free trainings around this. Anybody who’s been paying attention, they are not going to be surprised and this is where this is coming from.

So I think it’s really helpful. You know, we’re doing the same work, but you might be taking, I don’t know what you’re walking away with it as I am. So let’s talk more about what we’re learning, the feminist coaching principles, how we are applying that to your coaching business right now.

Shawna: Yeah, so I think that I’m so enjoying being a student in advanced certification with you, Amy. And it is, I think, so eye opening because every week we’re like taking a different angle on the ways in which we internalize sexism, patriarchal standards. And this, in terms of the good student approach that I had, it’s something that I do, it’s something that my clients really struggle with as well.

This idea that if we just try to get a perfect grade, do all the work, check off the things that we’re supposed to do to be a good mom, check off the things that we’re supposed to do to be a good business owner, check off the things that we’re supposed to do to be a good friend. If we just get enough check marks that suddenly we’re going to feel great about ourselves, about our lives. We’re going to feel less overwhelmed, more in control of things. And it doesn’t actually happen that way, funnily enough.

Amy: I know, and it’s so funny, as you were saying that I’m like, “No wonder we are such overachievers.” You and I both have just chased check marks for our entire lives. Oh, that check mark did not make me feel safe in my own body. Oh, that check mark did not create the certainty I thought that it would. Let me go chase more check marks.

Shawna: Right, that’s the big lie is that instead of thinking, oh, well, maybe I just need to go a level deeper in terms of generating my thinking on purpose, deciding what I want to believe, we go chasing the check marks. We think well, it must be the problem is that I’m just not doing things well enough. And if I were just a little bit better about doing this, this, and this, doing my homework, getting the check marks, getting the A grade, then I wouldn’t have any of these problems.

So that’s the big lie of the patriarchy. And that’s the kind of stuff that we’re unwinding in our advanced certification. It’s the stuff that I have to unwind with clients. And it’s the work that I have to do on a daily basis for myself too.

Amy: Yeah, this is such a great concept here, because I think what was just coming up for me as you were talking is that it’s a great tool. The reason that it’s such a big lie, is that it’s a great tool to keep us spinning our wheels. If you and I and everybody else who’s listening is just constantly chasing X number of dollars in this month and X number of clients and we’re just chasing the accolades. Like I’m interviewing you and over my shoulder, I can see the awards that I have won or the accolades.

I’ve even considered putting them away as opposed to having them on, just so much has changed in my brain in this spring of like how much value I’ve put on these awards from my coaching school and from previous mentors, that now I’m like, oh my gosh, those are check marks. But no achievement of any of those check marks has suddenly flipped a switch in me where I’m like, “I can literally create whatever I want,” right?

By the way, I’m not saying that my coaching school is like the patriarchy wearing sheep’s clothing by any means. But it is so ingrained in our culture and we are so socialized.

Shawna: It is.

Amy: Yeah, and it just keeps us, now granted in our coaching school the idea is that if you’re achieving those then you are doing the deep work. You are going deeper into knowing who you really are and what’s really important to you, and you are breaking rules of patriarchy. But it is really fascinating to me how as long as we can keep, and I heard it growing up so much. I heard it from my dad was like “A- why wasn’t it an A?”

It was so ingrained to just keep achieving. And of course, he’s just learning from the Catholic school nuns that taught him and generations back, back, back, that it keeps us actually from really achieving what we can feel in our bones we really want to do.

Shawna: Absolutely.

Amy: I love that you, I think chasing check marks is going to be the new, that’s going to be the new thing inside the mastermind. Are you just chasing check marks here, Shawna?

Shawna: I might need to use that in my marketing somewhere.

Amy: Yeah, so good, chasing check marks. And the socialization that you’re talking about that you’ve brought up, like chasing check marks, what it means to be a good student. How else do you see that in your life? Like, we can see it here, you and I are both former good girl, good students, get the A. But how else is this socialization that you’re uncovering in the feminist program that we’re both in right now? What else have you found?

Shawna: So one of the areas that I personally am doing a lot of work on right now is that I have always believed that hard work is necessary for success. And I think every person probably has their own definition of what hard work looks like, but for me, especially having had a long career in the corporate sector it always translated to putting in the hours and doing things a certain way, having the output look a certain way.

I still have like a little bit of a reflexive, like when I see an email that I send out that has a typo in it.

Amy: I know. I know, same.

Shawna: But all of this kind of ties back to the idea that we need to work hard, have things look perfect in order for us to be taken seriously and build a “solid” business. So I’m now just really doing a lot of work to try to unwind all the places that that’s showing up in my business, in my thinking, in my life. So that has blown open a whole area of focus for me.

Amy: Yeah, that’s so good. It reminds me of my first job out of college, which of course I graduated magna cum laude from college, of course. Obviously, I wouldn’t have done it any other way. And my first job out of college I got an internship with the number one PR firm in the entire world, obviously. Went to work for them, you know, ended up getting hired on and I was so miserable.

Anyway, they had like an internal university of sorts. Like top leaders would run classes every month for like newer associates, et cetera. And it was all about, basically it was teaching you about the culture of the company.

And I had already figured out like if you wanted to leave before 5:30, people asked you if you had like plans. Oh, do you got something going on? No, I just want to go home, it’s 5:30 and I’m done. Right? I’m 23, 24 years old though so I didn’t even have the full implications of how hard that was. Me now at 48, I’ve got teen kids and I’ve got family obligations.

But I still remember in one of these university classes for newer associates, the senior vice president saying if it’s Christmas Eve and a client calls, you will leave your family to go take care of the client’s needs. And I’m 23 years old, right? I’m 23, I’m green as green can be and I remember even then going, “I don’t think that sounds right. That sounds a little messed up but I don’t know why.” Because I was in a culture of hard work, time, time creates success here.

Shawna: Time creates success.

Amy: Yes, it was so like pounded into my brain from very different levels in every different way that time is what creates success.

So I am with you, as we’re sitting in here, you know, in the coaching certification we get like an aspect, ages in one week, weight one week, working another week, money another week, it’s always just a different lens, how ingrained this is of like the harder you work, the more successful you’ll be. The more hours you put in, the more successful you’ll be. The more check marks you check off, the more accolades you check, the more successful you’ll be.

And looking at that through this new lens like you and I are, I agree. I can’t remember exactly what you just said, but rock your world or like breaking your brain open of like what if that’s all a lie? Then what?

Shawna: Yeah.

Amy: Maybe that’s the question, then what? What comes up for you?

Shawna: Well, for me, I can compare and contrast to where I was in December of last year, you know, the month where I had zero in revenue. And I think I was in the mindset that I needed to work more, work harder, spend more time in order to create success. And what that meant for me was every week of December I committed to run a different new webinar.

So I created four like brand new free trainings, I had advertised them, so I felt locked in every single week, including the week between Christmas and New Year. I was out there delivering new content for my people. And I think I put out some great stuff, but it felt like a slog. And then when the results weren’t coming in, I felt unmoored.

I was like, “Wait, I thought I was working really hard. I should have something to show for this.” And it’s such a contrast between where I am coming out of the mastermind in April, of course, going back into it in like a month. But we’re in this like interim period where the mastermind is not happening for a couple months.

So finishing up in April where I had planned in advance for a month where I was not going to generate any revenue because I was like I’m going to create some new content, put some new things out there for my people. I need some time to develop that, internalize it. I also had a lot of life stuff going on, like kids out of school for two weeks, business travel picking back up for my husband. So I’m on nanny number five of this year, which is its whole separate podcast.

Amy: Hiring help is an entirely different episode.

Shawna: A different episode, stay tuned for that one. But basically, like a lot of life stuff going on. And so I had planned for this month where I was going to be not generating revenue, developing new stuff, and just holding the belief super solidly that as soon as I opened my doors again people were going to be ready and waiting.

Amy: So good.

Shawna: And that’s exactly what happened.

Amy: That’s so wonderful. Yeah, and I think this conversation too, I want to make really clear I don’t necessarily, because I’m hearing the actions that you took in December and those might be some actions I might coach someone to go do. But I think you said it very subtly and I want to shine a light on it because it was just like half of a sentence.

It didn’t feel, there was a disconnect between the brain, the body, and the action because you knew that it was coming from a place of I have to, last month was – We’re tying this into like where we started. Last month was a fluke, I have to prove myself, I need to figure out. As opposed to I might coach someone to say hey, let’s go run a webinar every week and let’s get really curious, let’s get really creative.

If the brain, and the body, and the actions are completely out of whack, then what you created so much value out into the world, I think it’s also really important that that might have also helped your January be what your January was, right?

Shawna: Yes.

Amy: So there’s a couple of things I want to highlight here of how you then turned around and a month later, after you ran all of this, you ended up creating. So that value was, I think it’s a couple things, A, it makes sense that it didn’t feel right because it was coming from this place of I have to prove last month wasn’t a fluke.

Shawna: Yep, so much pressure.

Amy: So much pressure. And also, you were still putting value out into the world that did find its way back to you. Just not in the timeline that maybe you were expecting.

Shawna: Totally. Totally, my thinking was I’m under pressure, I need to just be taking massive amounts of action, forcing my way through it even when I’m exhausted, and expecting the result to happen right away. Taking very similar actions in April and May, but from this place of self-trust, and safety, and just having the confidence and the belief that it’s going to be there.

Amy: Do you feel like you have kind of go-to beliefs about yourself at this point that you really rely on or land on? Because I can see how much growth you’ve had in such a short amount of time just in how you view yourself. So do you have thoughts that really work for you or beliefs about yourself that you’ve developed?

Shawna: Yes, and no, in the sense that I know that there are some folks who have beliefs about themselves that they practice every single day. And the way I do this work is a little bit different because I try to adapt based on wherever I am and whatever I think I need.

So one thought that has really been common, and that I’ve been developing for the long term in terms of belief was that there are 100 clients ready and waiting to work with me.

Amy: So good.

Shawna: So that’s one belief that I really tried to hold for a number of months now.

When it comes to beliefs about myself, probably the one that I use most frequently is it’s working. So simple and yet for me really effective. And then there are other bits of things that I would say change on the week depending on where I am.

Amy: Makes total sense. And I think I operate the same way too. I don’t have a standard I think these things all of the time and I just practice them. I am definitely more of a where am I in this moment? And I think this goes back to one of the concepts you learn in the mastermind, that belief meter, of like my belief and my doubt go up and down because we’re human beings, we are not in a constant state.

Some days I’ll wake up thinking this is the best day I’ve ever had, the next day I wake up going, “Oh my god, I think we’re all going to die today.” So the belief and what we need to believe in that moment might change. So I really love that. And I really love how, just in that short period of time you were able to see the A line, those actions can look very similar but they were coming from an entirely different place.

Shawna: Yes.

Amy: How has this impacted how you coach people, both what you’ve learned in the mastermind, your fluke work, my results don’t create confidence, that difference between doing the webinars in December versus doing them in the spring with the socialization work that you’ve learned in the mastermind.

You know, you’re coaching working moms struggling with work life balance, what shifts have you seen in your own coaching? Shifts you’ve seen in your clients? How has that really helped?

Shawna: I think one of the, there are a couple maybe big shifts that I’ve seen in my own coaching. I think one of the things, I’m going to touch on this even though I think it might be a little bit more abstract.

Amy: Okay.

Shawna: But let me try to make the connection. One of the things I’ve noticed in my own coaching is how much more confident I am in saying the thing that needs to be said in a coaching session. And that might seem a little bit abstract based on what we’ve been talking about. But for me, it’s really connected because I think the more I was worried about getting the check mark and getting the clients, the more people please-y I was as a coach and the way I thought about talking to my people.

And what I’ve realized is that the less attached I was to how any particular client was feeling about me on a particular day, the more willing I was to say the things that needed to be said and call out the things they were believing that were not serving them.

Amy: I haven’t talked about this much but there was one round of the mastermind that I introduced a money back guarantee. And through my own work and other work I noticed a shift in how I coached people because I suddenly need them to hit certain goals on their end.

And then realized, oh, I don’t like how I’m showing up when I need them. And how much more, no, I need you to follow the framework that gets you to 100K and not listen to your inner knowing and your intuition because I need you to get there faster so that we can have this whole money back guarantee thing in place.

As opposed to I’m just going to coach you in what you need to hear and I’m going to give you as much time as you need to process through that so that you can move forward. This space is about creating that safety for both myself as the coach and for them, especially, as the client. That I’m going to tell you what you need to hear because I don’t need you to give me my check marks.

This isn’t necessarily what you said, but I think it comes back to like we can be the women, it’s okay for us to be women that say the hard thing the other person needs to hear.

Shawna: Yes.

Amy: We’ve been told that’s not what good girls do.

Shawna: Exactly, the good girl tries to protect the relationship.

Amy: Yes.

Shawna: Is always worried about how other people are feeling. And I think that, as coaches, we create a safe container for our clients and we can also very powerfully and deeply coach them on the things that they don’t always want to confront.

Amy: Yes. And I think it’s that being able to hold space for, I think something that you and I have definitely learned that’s really, if I could say one thing that the feminist coaching certification has changed about my coaching is I can deeply coach you and it’s up to you. And I’m okay if you aren’t quite there yet, to move forward with that coaching.

That there’s this I don’t have to coach you to conclusion. I don’t have coach you to the place where we both feel super good and amazing because that may not be what’s in the best interest of the client. And a good girl would never leave her client feeling unmoored.

Shawna: Yeah.

Amy: But maybe it’s the unmooring that helps them actually move forward and create something they’ve never been able to create before.

Shawna: Totally. I’ve had so many clients who come back to me at some point during the week and send me an email and they’re like, “I’ve been sitting with that thing that came up and it just broke open this whole new way of looking at things.”

I had a client who said to me the other day, she’s like, and I didn’t even make this insight first, she made the connection herself. She said, “I’m just starting to realize how much I’ve been creating my own sense of burnout in my work.” She’s like, “And I don’t say that in a like beat myself up kind of way.” She’s like, “I just realized how much I’m contributing to that.” It’s like this is great. This is why I got into this work, to be able to help people in their lives in this way.

And the work that we’re doing in the mastermind and in the advanced certification, like I’m putting those things together, that’s just given me the skills to get to that deeper level with my clients, with myself. It’s really been transformational.

Amy: Absolutely. And I love this because you and I, on the surface, I think we present probably very differently but we have such a similar background of thinking. We’re such, like we’re reformed good girls as opposed to reformed bad girls. Yeah, we’re reform schoolgirls but it’s for former good girls who want to like shed all of that good girlness. That actually feels way more, like if you’re willing to go through the unmoored sensation.

I’ve been talking a lot about feeling very untethered this spring, it is incredibly uncomfortable. Would you agree?

Shawna: Yes.

Amy: And hence back to that self-safety conversation. How are you currently creating safety for yourself? Is it just a moment that you take? What does creating self-safety really look like for you?

Shawna: I think this looks different for different people, but I’ll talk about how I brought it to life for myself based on some of the things that you’ve been teaching and some of what I’m learning and studying about burnout and our nervous systems. For me one belief that I come back to, which unabashedly borrowed from Kara Loewentheil, the belief, it’s safe to feel unsafe.

Amy: Oh, I remember that from one of our calls.

Shawna: Yes. And I come back to this a lot, just this idea that it’s safe to feel unsafe and that I don’t always have to feel good and safe and not anxious in any given moment. I’ll talk about how this kind of relates to my coaching business in a moment.

The other thing that I am trying to do, and this comes back to the work that I’m doing on time and hard work, is the idea that I can respect what my body needs and what I’m feeling in terms of my energy and my capacity in any given week. And I say this because my background, my way of operating has typically been like, all right, well, I need to put in at least 40 hours of good solid work this week.

And, you know, last week we had a death in my husband’s family, had to travel for a funeral. All of a sudden my week was not going to happen the way I planned it. And what I would have done before was just be like, “Well, where can I find an extra three hours?”

Does that mean staying up late at night? Does that mean working weekends? I would just give me two, three hours wherever I could find it on a given day to try to get that work in. And I think now I’m much more cognizant of how I’m feeling and respectful of what I need and what I feel I can do without burning myself out. So I try to really take care of that in the way that I operate.

Amy: It is so good. And you are right, I think creating self-safety, as I learn more about how I do it and I ask other people how they do it, I think there’s so many different ways that we can get there. But I think the important thing is is that every single one of us can get there.

And this thought, when you said it out loud I had forgotten Kara said it in one of our calls, and I had the same visceral, like literal visceral reaction. I feel the shudder kind of come over my body at the idea that it is safe to feel unsafe. Feeling unsafe is not in and of itself unsafe.

Shawna: Yeah.

Amy: I really want everybody to just really wrap, like take a moment with that. I think that might be one of the biggest things that people could walk away with, this has been such a great time we’ve had together. But are you willing to go to this place? That lack of safety, the anxiety, the worry, the doubt is not in and of itself.

Shawna: Yeah.

Amy: I still, again, even as I’m explaining it I can feel the sensation going down my back and through my arms like, oh, man, it’s so good.

Shawna: Yeah, I love that thought. And I think that practice for me of just trying to hold two competing truths at the same time. And I’m doing this in my business right now, where I’m holding really strongly the certainty, the true belief that by December 31st of this year I’m going to be running a six figure business.

And at the very same time I’m able to hold this competing knowledge that even if that doesn’t happen it doesn’t mean anything. Doesn’t mean anything. It can be completely unsafe to run my business and I can also be completely relaxed about the way that I approach it. And these two things can happen at the same time, I love that I’m now able to operate really comfortably in that messy space.

Amy: Yes, yes. The whole, I hope everybody else, like the whole backside of me, like if hair is standing on end, that is me at this moment. Because that, I think, is the best place to land because that is inherently what I think you’re trying to show your clients because work life balance, balance is actually this space in between everything being a mess and everything being all tidy. Like that’s really where, right? That’s really what you’re selling them.

Shawna: Yes.

Amy: The balance is actually not balanced, it’s being able to live in this space in between everything being perfect and everything falling apart. You know, all work focus, all life focus. And I think ultimately that is our work as coaches, what we do for ourselves so that we can do for our clients.

It’s all about this messy middle, this roller coaster of life, the space between where we hold I can 100% do this, I’m going to say the things, I’m going to do the things that scare the crap out of me. And I’m also totally okay and my value is still inherently locked in and my worth is never in question.

And the funny thing is, is you’ve already done this. You did this between December and January, right? Of like, oh, I made 5,000 in November, obviously. And no, it took an extra month for that to show up on your balance sheet. And for some of us it takes a couple of extra months.

For me, I’ve seen this enough times where sometimes that result comes back pretty quickly. Sometimes it’s taken a year or more. And I think that just knowing, I hold onto the belief that it’s coming, it’s working, and all of the fear and anxiety that I feel right now, I can be safe in that. So good. So good.

I think the entire conversation of how your fluke work, the chasing of the check marks, and how that’s tied in with what we’ve learned through feminist coaching, so so good. Anything else?

Shawna: This has been such a good conversation. So fun. And I love it when we get together and talk. I think the only thing I would just leave for your listeners is I want to remind people that a year ago I was in a really different spot.

And I feel like sometimes we all have this tendency to compare where we see someone else a year down the line and where we are right now and it can seem really far away. And I’m looking at people who are like a year or two ahead of me and I’m like, “Oh my goodness, that seems really far away.”

I think the thing I would just leave your listeners with is the sense that this is all possible. This is all possible and the tools that you teach for doing this work help make it happen.

Amy: Oh, so good. Thank you, Mama. All right, so tell my listeners, what’s the best way to connect with you?

Shawna: Yeah, so there are two ways to connect with me and I love connecting with fellow coaches near and far. One is on my website, www.thementaloffload.com, because we all need to offload parts of the mental load.

Amy: The mental offload, so good.

Shawna: The mental offload. And the second place is on Instagram. I’m @mental_offload.

Amy: I love that this started out as a here’s what I’ve learned in my business in the past year and like we really deep dived into what I know you’re on board with, I’m 100% on board with. Just when we really look at how we’ve been socialized to show up in the world and we’re willing to question all of it while creating that sense of safety at the same time.

And I love that reminder of safety can be found even while feeling the emotions of a lack of safety. That will propel you forward. That is really what we’re doing here. I’m here for it, I know you are too.

Shawna, I have loved this hour with you. Thank you so much for coming on, sharing your story, sharing with the confident coaches community. I can’t wait to see you live and in person.

Shawna: I can’t wait.

Amy: I’m going to see you live and in person the first week of August. I invite all of you to join us the first week of August here in St. Louis. Shawna has been really pushing hard for Las Vegas because she wants to see Bruno Mars. Oh my goodness, we could have an entire hour conversation just about Anderson Paak and Silk Sonic, they are on constant rotation here in the Latta household.

I’m not completely opposed to going with you to Vegas, it’s just production value and meeting wise we’re going to go ahead and do the opening event for the next round of Path to 100K Mastermind here in St. Louis. But know that I’m not, you know, you could strong arm me into a trip to Vegas together. I’m just saying.

All right, my friends. Thank you, Shawna, I appreciate you so much. And I can’t wait to have you back on the podcast when you hit that six figures.

Shawna: Thank you so much for inviting me today and for the chance to speak a little bit to the confident coaches community. I can’t wait to meet you in person.

Amy: Yay. All right, thank you.

I mean, wasn’t that so good? Yes, Shawna and I could have talked for hours. And in fact, we did keep talking after the interview was over just like me and Melanie the week before. Two things came up that I think you will hear maybe some separate episodes about.

One of the things that we continued talking about was that lull that she had after her first round of initial clients and before she joined the mastermind. It kind of reminded me of a show hole that people can go into after they binge watch something and then it’s over. I think there’s a concept here that I’m going to call like the client hole or something.

We also had continued the chasing the check marks conversation. How it has shown up in masterminds I have been in, how it has shown up in masterminds that I’ve created. And how I am creating Path to 100K to remove the chasing of the check marks energy. So look for more conversation around chasing the check marks.

Also, I can’t wait to hear your biggest takeaway from this episode. Share on social media, go find this Instagram post and let us know in the comments what was the biggest takeaway for you, tag us, share this episode into your stories. You can find Shawna @mental_offload on Instagram, plus thementaloffload.com. So make sure you tag us let us know your biggest takeaways and how you are going to use this interview to carve out your path to 100K.

And you don’t have to wait. You don’t have to wait at all. Doors to the August round are now open. We are going through the application and the enrollment process right now. This is your time, we only open twice a year, this is your last time in 2022 to be able to get into the Path To 100K Mastermind with me to do the work that Shawna and I were talking about, and to meet us in St. Louis the first week of August.

This is your moment. This is what you’ve been waiting for. Amylatta.com/mastermind. The details are out now, applications are open. Fill out the application, let’s have our consult call, let’s get you enrolled, and let’s see you in St. Louis in August and then for the next six months over Zoom as we work together on your path to 100K. And until next week, let’s get paid, coach.

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Thanks so much for listening to The Confident Coaches Podcast. I invite you to learn more. Come visit me at amylatta.com and until next week, let’s go do epic stuff.

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