Meet Shilpa Pandey – our SuppaWoman of the month. She is a Life Transformation & Wellness Coach credited by ICF. She is an Yoga Enthusiast and her wellness retreats are a treat to the mind, body and soul. Her followers have benefitted immensely by finding a balance between their mind and soul. Shilpa says ” I support people to achieve their life’s passion and purpose . I help them to reach to holistic wellness. I wish to reach out to hundreds of people in the world to make their lives fulfilling and enriching!” She is an inspiration I interviewed recently and here’s our Q&A session. Let’s get inspired! QFor our readers who don’t know you too well, talk to us about how you became an entrepreneur? A After working for more than 16 years as a HR professional with various corporates in industries like airline, consulting, FMCG & retail, I had already achieved an awareness about myself that I am a kind, helpful and compassionate person. People reached out to me for advice and support in various aspects of life and life skills. And after going through a big turmoil in my personal life where I had to grapple with a lot of things – personal as well as professional, my emotions, my responsibilities, my relationships. But what kept me going was my child, my parent’s support, and friends and family who completely supported me to overcome my situation with divorce, my kid going through surgery. And by the time i had finished year and half with future group which was my last assignment, I realised that I needed to do something more fulfilling and aspiring in life. And being aware of my values and beliefs about self, I had already started my certification for life coaching too. And I was also looking at flexibility because my child was growing up and being a single parent, I needed to dedicate more time to him rather than being at work from 8am to 8pm, and by the time I reached home I didn’t have any energy. So that was another reason that i wanted to have my own entrepreneurship setup. But as we all have to pay bills and need to be financially stable I was looking at a setup which would first take care of this need of mine. So, flexibility, giving more time to my kid, and doing something more fulfilling which will give me help me share my love and peace with others is what was my path. And that is how i went into the entrepreneurial way of being the life transformation & a wellness coach. It’s a beautiful journey which started with pain, which led to lot of self enquiry – asking questions to myself rather than asking questions to others. I kept discovering self – when I was going through a personal crisis what was my motivation and what happens to so many others and what is that i can offer, what is that I can start as a service to others, what is that I really wanted to do with my life which has a purpose. And what I realised that with my own personal experience and my own story, I rested that there are lot of people who are seeking holistic wellness and life changing perspective and support. And as a result, I started my journey 1 year back on 1st May as a life transformation & wellness coach. QWhat was the magic pill for you? Was it a coach, a defining moment or deciding and creating a mindset? AThe magic pill for me was the 1 month break that i took before i could jump into the entrepreneurship way. It was on my certification with the yoga intsitute where i spent a lot of time with self in lot of silence even though there were a lot of people along with me. A lot of questions were asked, answered self, lot of turmoil of the past which i let go off, past decisions that kept coming back making me feel inadequate and incomplete and in doubt which were erased over there. The whole 1month process i realised that i have a beautiful soul and mind. I am not born to be in pain, i completely understand every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it a seed on an equal or greater benefit this si what i realised over there. When you are down to nothing god is aboslutely upto something, the faith will see the invisible, i believed in the incredible and then basically you receive the impossible. I had the confidence that i would start and i would start at all because i was going to give my best as i had given in the last 16 years and i was very much sure that for this journey which was compeletey different from what i was doing all this while and to establish myself as a life and an well ness coach was not that easy. I have been practicing yoga since 2007 and it helped me to come out of slip disc, and it had helped me through my pregnancy, the stiffness, bloating post pregnanacy depression etc and i realised that it is the best form of practice that anybody can have. And that is where the whole pull happened where i realised that i practice yoga and i can allign my thoughts beautifully during the day, i start watching my thoughts and focus that they remian positive , by performing asanas and stretches i remove my toxins. I felt that this is my magic pill to take it to people that i have this service which i offer. So basically, i would say the decision everybody has gone through something that has changed them in a way that they could never go back to the person they were once before. I completely transformed myself, evolved myself as a more confident person, as a more loving person. As a humbler person. I had these values always but the defining moment was when i was sitting there and seeing a reflection of myslef and seeing that yes this is who i am and i am not the person who would run after people who do not love them or run after situations which are making you feel doubtful about your situiation and that is where the whole magic thing happened. QFor women living under the rock, what advice do you have for them? How can they come out of their shell and get in touch with their desires? AWomen living under the rock needs to first find out their passion . If you know your passion please take the first step..it can be a very tiny step but start …don’t wait!!! Look back on your childhood days and remember what were you passionate about , and as you grew up which were things you left behind …the answer is deep within…don’t wait for others to tell you ..what you are good at…find your source of happiness. QWith so much of exposure around and availability of coaches & mentors, why do you think women entrepreneurs are still struggling to be successful? AI agree that there is a lot of exposure around with a lot of coaches & mentors who are available to help you. Having come from corporate background i relate to the corporate world where being competitive, aggressive are the attitudes that you are sought for. Which is not the key with entrepreneurs because what you need here is passion, creativity, confidence, assertiveness, hard-work, high level perseverance. They are not the people who would fall into the cut throat competition zone. Yes, we see more of male counterparts in the entrepreneurial space. Everywhere you will find that its more male dominated whether it is entrepreneurs or corporate, the ratio is skewed up. Another aspect of female entrepreneur role is that the person would be seen fulfilling other responsibilities also at home, balancing business & family life. So, they get lesser time to focus on business and make it a successful venture. And this could be the challenge with women entrepreneurs. Yet another aspect is that we say that we have so many mentors available, but how many would reach out to support you in your vision & mission towards your company is what we must see. There are various platforms but to find a like minded person, knowing where to find the right support, which network to reach out to is also very crucial and very important. What may be of interest to you may not be of interest to somebody else. May, be they may not be okay with your model and with your business. They may not see the kind of profits that you would be okay with so there are a lot of adjustments that you must make. So, as a result you feel that it is not possible to find good mentors/ coaches. QHow does wellness play a part in success? What would you advice the women entrepreneurs…how can they prioritise wellness? ACompletely wellness plays a part in success. I have experienced personally. Every time i was hit by a physical ailment eg slip disc, yoga helped me to come out of it. It was a continuous process. If you are not physically well, you can not be at peace with yourself. You would be irritated, you would not be able to take the right decisions, you would feel incomplete. So, i think well ness, which would be your mind, body, and soul – i would say holistic wellness which is my approach towards life. It is completely advisable for women whether in early 20s, 30s, 40s, whatever age bracket they fall into, to have a routine where they can focus on all the 3 aspects mind, body, and soul. We are talking about is – getting up early, doing breathing exercises, doing meditation. Focusing on physical exercise it would be running, gymming, yoga or pilates. Any kind of routine where you are sweating. A 15-45mins of workout where you are allowing your body to feel fresh and rejuvinate. For mind – read good self help books, observe your thoughts. In the day we have 60 thousand thoughts and we do not want 559900 thoughts to be negative. How positive are your thoughts, how helpful are your thoughts for your progress & growth. How relaxed you are in your mind and how prompt and fast you can take decisions. How well you can perform your responsibilities and duties. Without feeling exhausted at, the end of the day is wellness. Soul – automatically when you are at peace, when you love yourself, when you feel good about yourself. You will be able to share a similar kind of environment around you. If you feel irritated that’s the feeling you will carry around you. So, i say that it is very crucial for women to have a wellness regime. You should do some amount of exercise, you should have a healthy lifestyle, a healthy eating habit, your nutrients, vitamins, and supplement in place, so many women don’t drink enough water. Keeping the basics in place leads into success. Which lead you to be prepared for any kind adversity that may come your way. Mind, body, and soul are completely aligned together when you are looking at a complete holistic wellness. QAnd lastly, what would be your success vitamin dose for our lovely women readers… a few are already entrepreneurs and a few thinking to start….? AMy success vitamin dose for all the lovely women entrepreneurs would be to detox. Detox your mind, your body, your relationships. The best gift you can give yourself is direct the focus of your mind towards empowering your thoughts. So that it can heal your body. Simply focusing on different things can have an immense impact. Focus on what you have achieved already rather that how much you still must do. Start to become aware and consciously choose where you place your attention. Make sure that the people around are a tonic to you, make sure that you focus on positive and supportive influences in your life. Detach from negative things that could drain your energy. Reach out to coach or a mentor every time you get stuck, seek out your answers, get a different perspective. Don’t just do things that hold you back. So, my success vitamin is that you must detox at times, it will only lead to happiness and success.