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Mikaela Jackson of Wonder Source: “Inner Work & Mindset”

Coaches that have done the necessary inner work and have a powerful expansive mindset will exude a positivity, calmness and confidence — an inner wisdom and energy that will reassure the prospective client that they will be in safe hands as they navigate their journey. So they will attract more clients, secure more and will be more […]

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Coaches that have done the necessary inner work and have a powerful expansive mindset will exude a positivity, calmness and confidence — an inner wisdom and energy that will reassure the prospective client that they will be in safe hands as they navigate their journey. So they will attract more clients, secure more and will be more powerful coaches as a result.


The coaching industry is now tremendous. It is a 15 billion dollar industry. Many professionals have left their office jobs to become highly successful coaches. At the same time, not everyone who starts a coaching business sees success. What does someone starting a career as a life coach, wellness coach, or business coach need to know to turn it into a very successful and rewarding career?

In this interview series, called “Five Things You Need To Create a Highly Successful Career As a Life or Business Coach” we are interviewing experienced and successful life coaches, wellness coaches, fitness coaches, business and executive coaches and other forms of coaches who share the strategies you need to create a successful career as a life or business coach.

In this particular interview, we had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Mikaela Jackson.

Mikaela Jackson is an international award-winning coach, passionate freedompreneur, dedicated female champion, and the founder of She Almighty which provides coaching, courses, events and community for aspirational, mission-led and impact-driven women. Having been on her own personal development journey and having coached thousands of women to shift from survive, to strive to thrive; Mikaela is a firm believer in the transformational power of coaching and the power within us all to create the careers, businesses and lives of our dreams.


Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and what brought you to this particular career path?

My pleasure — thank you for having me! Well I’m a small town girl from Aberystwyth in Wales. It was the most wonderful place to grow up, by the sea and in the mountains. I had parents and people in my life that loved me, a great (state) education and lots of opportunities to do stuff like sports, horse riding, dancing, theatre you name it! My parents always encouraged me, I did well at school and I followed the “logical” path to university. I didn’t know what course I wanted to do, I just knew I didn’t want it to be a traditional subject. I ended up picking media, culture, politics and social sciences and I loved it all! It completely opened up my mind and broadened my horizons. I felt empowered and excited when I graduated — like the world was my oyster, which it was. But then my reality kicked in… I had no idea what I wanted to do next, the UK and the world happened to be in a financial crisis in 2008 and I was lost.

In a nutshell, not knowing what I wanted to do when I grew up, led to plenty of frustration and lack of fulfilment throughout my twenties. Whilst growing up in Aberystwyth was brilliant, I wasn’t exposed to lots of different jobs or career opportunities and so navigating a career post uni was challenging.

In my early twenties, I ended up travelling South East Asia and Australia by myself before settling in Melbourne for 3 years, and it was during that time that I became owner-partner of a sales and marketing company. It was an amazing opportunity with lots of exciting experiences for a twenty something — like going on yachts, winning awards and earning lots of money for my age.

But that eventually took its toll and I really wanted to move back to the UK and get to London. To cut a long story short, I made the move, I needed a job and had no idea what next — a friend suggested recruitment so I went for it. Months later, I hit a low point. I wasn’t happy in that job, albeit a good one, I wasn’t happy in my living situation or relationship and I wasn’t realising my life potential — I knew I had to make some positive changes and nobody could do that for me.

That’s when I discovered coaching and it became the catalyst for hugely positive change in my life.

It took me a few more years to do the inner work and hone my craft — I studied a diploma in coaching; and a few more job changes before I plucked up the courage to jack in my corporate job to set up my freedom business before I turned 30 (the milestone was a driver!) and I haven’t looked back since. So ironically or perhaps not so ironically, I now work with other women to gain clarity on what they want and empower them to go after it, boldly — to create their freedom, be their best selves, live their best lives, realize their potential, purpose and the impact they are destined to have.

You are a successful business leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?

Tenacity

I’ve been ambitious and determined for as long as I can remember, and it hasn’t come from external pressure, it feels like who I am. For me, being tenacious has meant having big dreams and goals, believing they are possible and striving for them even when the path isn’t entirely clear. I seize opportunities, treat my work like an apprenticeship so that I am always learning; and I keep going even when I don’t have all the answers.

It is like an inner knowing and assurance that I will achieve whatever I set my mind to. I believe that for others too and in taking a stand for what we want, even when it doesn’t come easy and it feels scary — ultimately, when you follow your heart, the outcome will be worth it.

If I wasn’t tenacious and determined, I wouldn’t have achieved the things I have like becoming owner-partner of a sales and marketing company when I was in my early twenties or starting my own business before I turned 30.

Growing my business over the last 4.5 years has taken tenacity, particularly whilst becoming a mum! As anyone who has started a business will know, it can be an emotional rollercoaster with a steep and ongoing learning curve as we’re ever evolving as individuals and as business owners. You need to be determined to be successful; but determination and tenacity with clarity and purpose is the golden ticket.

Awareness

It doesn’t sound exciting, but a powerful sense of awareness is part of my secret sauce! I don’t think any leader can be truly great or successful without a strong self-awareness and an awareness of others. Great leaders know their vision, their mission and their why and have a clear sense of purpose.

Embarking on my personal development journey in my mid twenties and discovering coaching was the catalyst for hugely positive change and progress in my life. And ultimately, that’s why most of my clients come to me for — positive change and results.

Gaining awareness and clarity on what I wanted and what needed to change, meant I took action, pursued my goals, created and continue to create the career and life of my dreams — leading by example for others to do the same.

Having awareness means I’m compassionate, empathetic, non-judgemental, open-minded — all of which are essential to me being the human being I aspire to be and the best possible coach I can be.

Having awareness means I am self-empowered, resilient and a woman on a mission, with both clarity, purpose and a mindset that supports my growth and the growth of others too.

Intuition

I’ve always been great at reading and connecting with people, you could say it’s an emotional intelligence but I think it goes far beyond that.

Even when I was young, I was really difficult to surprise, I would pick up on the smallest cues — I remember seeing a tiny spot of yellow paint on my mum’s finger and I instantly knew she had painted my bedroom — there had been no prior discussion of bedroom decor!

And when I worked in sales, I could gain people’s trust and will so that within minutes they would agree to put money to something they hadn’t anticipated when they woke up that morning.

Using my intuition enables me to coach more bravely and boldly and I hope in turn, makes me a more powerful coach.

I use my intuition everyday, it means accessing my inner wisdom and highest self. If I only listened to what people told me without questioning that with curiosity, if I didn’t read between the lines and challenge to get to what’s really going on, what people really desire — I wouldn’t be the coach that I am, I wouldn’t demonstrate my value and I wouldn’t work with the number of clients that I do.

How have habits played a role in your success? Can you share some success habits that have helped you in your journey?

The habits in my success link to my self-care. I’m a strong advocate for a good night’s sleep (although sometimes challenging with a toddler) and rest when you need it — you’ve got to listen to your body! Fuel it well, water it plenty and move it everyday. Look after number one, take care of the basics and you’re halfway there.

Some of my habits include: always having a nutritious breakfast — I love porridge with seeds and berries; my morning run with my Audible book of the moment — most recently ‘Leading from Purpose’ by Nick Craig — a game changer! For exercise, learning and mindset. And starting the day clean — I am a water sign so water/a shower always helps! There’s a theme here — start well and as you mean to go on! Plus I see the start of a new day as an opportunity to hit reset, full of promise and opportunity.

Doing these things consistently means I know I’m taking control of my day and in turn, help me feel that way in my life, particularly because I can do them anywhere.

This will be intuitive to you but it will be helpful to spell this out directly. Can you help explain a few reasons why it is so important to create good habits? Can you share a story or give some examples?

For me habits are grounding and empowering. We can’t control everything that’s going to come at us in our week but there are always things we can control and that in itself is empowering. Positive healthy habits can make a big difference to how we feel in the present and how we operate and feel over time. As actions, habits require less thought and therefore less energy and time wastage, and should have the opposite boosting effect supporting us to be more efficient, energized and optimal.

For me, healthy eating is a habit. I make healthy choices (most of the time — life is about balance and we all benefit from everything in moderation!) because it makes sense for me to do so and I know how I’ll feel if I don’t — sluggish, lethargic, annoyed with myself and so on.

Healthy habits in one aspect of our life tend to or should more easily translate into other aspects of our life with discipline and a healthy mindset, meaning we feel more in control, empowered and confident in ourselves and in our abilities to create our best careers and lives.

Speaking in general, what is the best way to develop good habits? Conversely, how can one stop bad habits?

The best way to develop a good habit or ditch a bad one is to first get clear on why it is important for you to do so and then be honest with yourself about whether you fully want to and intend to commit to starting or stopping.

One of my clients knew that she smoked out of habit and had her reasons for doing so. Her reasons were emotional and the smoking was a comfort. But she knew it was bad for her health and she wanted to quit but admitted she wasn’t quite ready to do so when we initially talked it through.

But she had strong motivations for quitting, her young daughter and her own health being two of them. Weeks later she had decided she was now ready and committed to the process of quitting because she understood why she had been holding onto something that wasn’t serving her, and the benefits for giving it up — what she would gain.

So developing good habits and ditching bad ones requires understanding of why they should be or have been formed, the benefits for creating or forming new positive habits in place of the bad, and a strong commitment with discipline to do so. Habits don’t form overnight, so be kind, consistent and committed — if you fall off the horse, get back on, keep reminding yourself why you’re doing it and even create a reward for your commitment over a period of time or once you’ve achieved the desired result.

Can you share your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Why does that resonate with you so much?

“If you want the best the world has to offer, then offer the world your best” — Oprah Winfrey

It resonates because on the one hand, it’s so simple — it makes sense, you want the best, give your best, you want someone to smile at you, smile at them — you’re far more likely to get one in return!

We can’t expect to sit back and for our best life to come to us, we have to take ownership, give our best energy, share our love, our greatness and our unique gifts with the world. If we don’t, we do everyone a disservice.

It also resonates because it infers we are part of something far bigger, connecting us to others and the wider world which in itself is a wonderful thought.

I believe that each and everyone one of us can make an important and powerful contribution should we think that way and should we choose to.

Plus, who doesn’t love a Queen O quote — she oozes wisdom, calmness and assurance and has the repertoire to back it up!

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?

The most exciting project I’m working on at the moment is my ‘On a Mission’ Mastermind for mission-led leaders and founders. I love supporting women who believe they are meant for something bigger and realize they are part of something bigger — to realize their potential and have the impact they are destined to have.

I recently launched a membership community called the She Almighty Collective — the home for aspirational women on a mission to be their best and have an Almighty impact in the world. We champion self, health and wealth development and fiercely believe in the power of the conscious female collective.

I’m a coach for women of all ages, stages and backgrounds but personal development with purpose excites me. She Almighty is now a business for good in partnership with B1G1, the global giving movement aligned with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals supporting worthy causes all over the world.

I believe that if we all do our bit, together, we can make an Almighty difference!

Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. Many coaches are successful, but some are not very successful. From your experience or perspective, what are the main factors that distinguish successful coaches from unsuccessful ones? What are your “Five Things You Need To Create a Highly Successful Career As a Life or Business Coach”? If you can, please share a story or an example for each.

I work with lots of coaches and there are a few things that stand out. Successful coaches, like any leader, need to lead by example so first things first we need to have done the…

  1. Inner Work & Mindset

A strong self-awareness and a positive powerful mindset are essential for a coach and to have those things you need to have done and to continue to do the inner work. Whilst looking after and prioritizing number one — we have to practice what we preach!

We provide open, calm and non-judgmental spaces for our clients so we need to be all of those things in order to be effective. It also means we can better guide our clients — to realize and achieve their dreams and goals, that inner peace, confidence, assurance and trust in their path — to lead their best, happiest, most contented and fulfilled lives.

I’m often told by my clients that I have a calm energy and that they already feel more positive and empowered even as a result of their first call with me. I don’t think that’s something you can fake.

Coaches that have done the necessary inner work and have a powerful expansive mindset will exude a positivity, calmness and confidence — an inner wisdom and energy that will reassure the prospective client that they will be in safe hands as they navigate their journey. So they will attract more clients, secure more and will be more powerful coaches as a result.

2. Inspirational Story & Journey

If you have been on a personal development journey and you have really done the work, you will have an inspirational story.

When people relate, resonate and importantly, are inspired by your story, that’s a powerful thing, particularly when you have gone from where they are to where they want to be.

As a coach you are not an expert in your clients work or life — they are; but you do need to have done your own inner work, have been on the journey and have your own empowered story to tell because it’s part of your job to help them connect, create and live their empowered story and embrace their own unique journey.

If they don’t already know my story, prospective clients will often ask me what my story is, what led me to where I am, how I got there and why I do what I do. And even if they don’t, it’s highly likely that I’ll share my story or parts of it because it demonstrates that I have done the work, I’ve been and am on the journey and therefore can guide them and support them on theirs — in business and in life.

3. Strong Message & Brand

When you have a strong sense of self, you know who you are, what you stand for and what you’re about; that shines through. But communicating that — via your website, marketing, through your coaching is essential too; in order to attract your ideal clients — they need to know what you do is for them and to believe that you can help them.

When I created She Almighty, I wanted women to know that it was for them and I wanted them to feel empowered and aspirational.

She Almighty is a freedom and lifestyle business for me and I started it with powerful intentions — including being in charge of my own professional identity, creativity, time — when I work, where I work and what on; and to be able to build it around family life one day which is now the dream I’m realizing!

I consider myself to be a powerful and independent woman capable of achieving whatever I put my mind to. I face challenges, I grow from them, I have dreams and goals, I take a stand for what I want and go after it. And through my work, I embolden other women to do the same.

Whether it be through my coaching, through my workshops or events, women and men have told me that they feel more empowered as a result of working with me.

So my message is incredibly important because what I put out is what I attract and then living by that, as part of me and the brand, means I make that a reality for myself and for others.

4. Visible, Accessible & Credible

In order for clients to work with us, we need to be visible, accessible and credible.

I wouldn’t consider myself to be a great marketer, I would actually say it’s a weakness of mine, but I have found my ways to be visible.

Having consistently showed up — through running events, being on social media, saying yes to opportunities to write blogs, articles, run workshops, meeting people for coffees and so on over 4.5 years means Google ranks me — I get found all over the world, people know me on the London scene (my in-person event stomping ground), I get referred by clients, past colleagues to other individuals or businesses — basically, I have built my business over time and I have done it by being visible, accessible and credible.

If you’re great at marketing or get someone to run the show for you then that’s obviously a bonus; whatever the case, for people to benefit from your service and to be a successful coach, they need to be able to find you or know you, easily understand, access and receive a professional service from you.

5. Be a Powerful Coach & Coach Powerfully

Ultimately, as a coach, your work does the selling for you. The brilliant thing is, we always have the opportunity to demonstrate our value as coaches and the nature of our work means we can build strong professional relationships through doing so — who doesn’t love being listened to (being really listened to and heard) with the intention of helping them gain more clarity, achieve their goals, feel more empowered — and so on!

But coaching is a craft that needs to be honed and some people, like with everything, will feel more natural in their coaching abilities. I knew from day one in my training that I could be a great coach, it just felt like who I was — I was playing to my strengths.

Whether it feels natural initially or not, anyone can be a great coach if they set their mind to it. But it takes experience to become a powerful coach and courage to coach powerfully. If you, like me, are committed to your personal development and growth — I have spent a lot of time and money on courses and books! And the growth of others. If you genuinely believe in the power of all of your clients to achieve what they set their mind to, to be their best, most powerful selves; and if you’re willing to put in the work — literally do the hours of coaching it will take, and to be bold and brave in your coaching. Then you can and will be a powerful successful coach and you will help your clients to achieve their definition of success too, whatever that is.

What are the most common mistakes you have seen coaches make when they start their business? What can be done to avoid those errors?

Casting the net too wide with clients by not being true to who they are, their story — what led them here, and their deeper purpose — why they do what they do and who they really want to work with. When coaches tune into those things, they show up far more authentically, lead from purpose, attract more of their ideal clients and will have the impact they desire to have.

It’s also a common mistake to get caught up in the activity we think we should be doing and often hear we should be doing via and on social media, marketing etc. All the noise is confusing, and “shoulds” rarely lead to great or authentic results. Obviously our message needs to get out there and we need to be visible, but we should do that through ways that feel right for us and by playing to our strengths.

When we do the above things, we trust that our clients will come to us and we’ll work with who we are meant to, even when we are having a slow month. Basically, we need to stay true and back ourselves!

Based on your experience and success, what are a few of the most important things a coach should know in order to create a Wow! Customer Experience? Please share a story or an example for each.

Always demonstrate your value. Coaches get their clients by coaching and coaching is a powerful process and experience as it places the coachee at the centre and is designed to enlighten, empower and help the client create progress. A coachee should always feel clearer, more empowered and positive as a result of your conversation whether that be through an initial discovery session before working together or through a coaching session.

Coach boldly and don’t be afraid to challenge. Your clients aren’t coming to you for pleasant conversation, or perhaps they are but that expectation should have been managed beforehand! They are coming to you for greater clarity, progress, breakthroughs and results. That will nearly always require you to challenge their existing behaviors, thought patterns, beliefs and narratives and them going outside of their comfort zone.

Exceed expectation. Read a book or article that you know your coachee will benefit from, share it. Come across an opportunity or connection that could be beneficial or enriching for your client — hook them up. Give them something you didn’t initially promise. They’ll thank you for it, will hopefully be wowed and who knows you might just be a part of the empowered story they tell on their journey.

Lead generation is one of the most important aspects of any business, and particularly in coaching. What are the best ways for a coach to find customers? Can you share some of the strategies you use to generate good, qualified leads?

Be where your clients are and give them a reason to take action. In a nutshell, you need to be where your clients hang out, whether that in virtual or physical locations or at least where they might look — i.e. via Google search! And when encountering you they need to resonate, know your service is for them, learn that it could be or enticed to find out more. I offer a free discovery session for prospective clients with no strings attached and although it’s time intensive (typically an hour), it’s during that time that people make the decision whether they are going to invest a significant amount of money to work with me so it’s necessary; plus my conversion rate is typically one in four so it’s worth my while.

Having a strong brand, message, shop window (i.e. website) is key to attracting your ideal clients. People need to align with you, your message and your brand — your story, the journey you’ve been on, what you stand for and what you can help them with. When I came up with my brand name — She Almighty — I wanted women to know it was for them and I wanted them to feel aspirational and empowered as a result of their encounter with us whether that be through one-to-one coaching, an event or workshop. Because I have a clear brand/message, I rarely if ever attract prospective clients that couldn’t benefit from my services.

Position yourself as the authority. I’ve been running my own events for the past four or so years now and I have found that to be far more powerful for client attraction than trying to meet clients at other people’s networking events. There are many ways to position yourself, PR & media coverage, writing your own thought leadership pieces on LinkedIn, Medium or a platform like Thrive; or being on coaching platforms like Wonder Source with other industry experts. What will position you, give you credibility and make you stand out as the authority in your field? Do that!

Coaches are similar to startup founders who often work extremely long hours and it’s easy to end up burning the candle at both ends. What would you recommend to your fellow coaches about how to best take care of their physical and mental wellness when starting their business?

Starting any business is an emotional rollercoaster and it’s tough because you’re wearing so many different hats, learning so much, juggling so much and not always playing to your strengths. All of that really requires you to be kind and patient with yourself as you navigate the journey. Particularly as coaches, we need to be in tune with how we’re feeling and recognize when we need to take a break or a holiday. Where we need to set boundaries whether that be for working hours, time between sessions or professional boundaries with our clients to protect our energy and not take on their challenges personally — even if that is difficult sometimes. But you do learn to get better at that as a coach. It always comes back to the basics for me, a good night’s sleep, rest when you need it, exercise and fuel your body well. Also as a coach, I drink a lot during sessions — keeping hydrated when you are doing such energetic work is super important. Oh yeah, and outsource the things you can afford to and prefer not to do — you don’t have to do it all and you’ll be lighter, more energized, enabled and productive for it!

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

My movement would be to support and nurture young people to follow their passions and pursue their interests earlier that will have a positive impact. So many young people are really conscious about people and the environment, they care about their world and they want to make a difference. But I don’t think our education system, at least here in the UK, necessarily sets us up for our best and most impactful careers beyond it. We move through the system, have to make big and quite narrowing decisions on subjects for A-Levels and university. I’d love to see more entrepreneurial, vocational and work experience opportunities. It relates to my story of not knowing what I wanted to do when I grew up and really struggling throughout my twenties to figure it out even though I thought the world was my oyster — which it was. For me, lack of exposure to such opportunities meant lack of aspiration for them and know-how to pursue a meaningful career that would not only have given me fulfilment and helped to realize my potential, but would have made a genuine difference and meaningful impact in the world, to make it a better, healthier and harmonious place.

We are blessed that some very prominent names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them.

Deborah Meaden— she’s a British businesswoman and stars on a TV show called Dragon’s Den which features entrepreneurs pitching for funding for their businesses. She inspires me because she is a businesswoman with strong morals, principles and ethics and her investments reflect that. I know that if I were to pitch a business idea, she would be my dragon! Maybe one day 🙂 I actually met her once in the toilets in a hotel in London. I was pregnant at the time and she said something lovely to me, it cemented my admiration for her even more! I’m convinced that it’s a sign that our paths crossed, watch this space! Deborah, if you’re reading this, would you prefer breakfast or lunch?!

How can our readers further follow your work online?

Absolutely, they can read more about my coaching programmes, courses, masterminds, events and membership community at www.shealmighty.com and connect with me @shealmightycollective on Instagram.

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success and good health!

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