Holly Raymond: “Desire to serve”

Desire to serve — if you get into the wellness industry solely to make money it isn’t going to work. You have to truly have a desire to help people in order to have the right kind of energy to be transformational. I’ve tried MLMs in the past and they were never successful. I viewed them as […]

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Desire to serve — if you get into the wellness industry solely to make money it isn’t going to work. You have to truly have a desire to help people in order to have the right kind of energy to be transformational. I’ve tried MLMs in the past and they were never successful. I viewed them as a way to generate extra money so my heart was not in th right place. This is a passion project to me — failure is not an option.

The global health and wellness market is worth more than 1.5 trillion dollars. So many people are looking to improve their physical, mental, and emotional wellness. At the same time, so many people are needed to help provide these services. What does it take to create a highly successful career in the health and wellness industry?

In this interview series called “5 Things You Need To Create A Highly Successful Career In The Health and Wellness Industry” we are talking to health and wellness professionals who can share insights and stories from their experiences.

In this particular interview, we had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Holly Raymond.

Scientist, author, and ketogenic nutrition coach, Holly has followed a low carbohydrate lifestyle for more than 20 years. In addition to living low carb for maintaining weight control, she has also adapted to a strict medical ketogenic diet to help control her son’s epileptic seizures. Realizing the amazing health benefits of this lifestyle, her mission is to share this with the world and teach as many people as possible about the wonderful benefits of living a ketogenic lifestyle.

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 how you grew up?

I’m so grateful for your time! I grew up in an average middle class home, surrounded by family. My grandparents had a huge piece of property, and as their kids became adults and started family they were gifted with a piece of land and built houses of their own. I literally was the first person in my family to move off of our street! So I grew up with a crazy amount of support, but in my mind that was just normal — surround yourself with a supportive tribe and empower each other every day. I suppose that is why I entered a coaching role, I get my fulfillment through helping others.

Was there a particular person or event that inspired you to live a wellness-focused lifestyle? Can you tell us about your main motivation to go all in?

Definitely my youngest son. I’ve lived a ketogenic lifestyle for many years and never really took inventory of the health benefits besides weight loss. When my son was 14 he had his first grand mal seizure. After a second seizure he was diagnosed with epilepsy. This has to be one of the most terrifying diseases I’ve ever experienced — there is no warning, no pattern, no way to prepare. He doesn’t get auras so nearly ever seizure results in major injury from falling or hitting body parts during the seizure. After 14 different medications and brain surgery failed to control his seizures his neurology team suggested the ketogenic diet as an add on therapy. Medical keto is not focused on weight loss, but it is an unintended side effect. This program is very intense and incudes a 7 day hospital stay where the child is monitored closely while entering ketosis and the parents participate in an immersive training on the lifestyle as well — the hospital has a whole wing dedicated to keto, including a kitchen where we took cooking classes, its amazing! This whole experience made me want to shout from the rooftop about the awesomeness that is this lifestyle and I knew I had to share it with the world.

Most people with a wellbeing centered lifestyle have a “go-to” activity, exercise, beverage, or food that is part of their routine. What is yours and can you tell us how it helps you?

I’ll share my go-to beverage — my family calls it my Witches Brew. I start with water, add in collagen, adaptogens, electrolytes and some sugar free flavor. It’s great for mood, energy, bright skin and I always recommend it for people to help with the “keto flu” that many experience when adapting to using ketones as fuel. A food that I always keep on hand are fat bombs which are great when trying to eat a diet that is 75% fat, but there are too many to list here.

To live a wellness-focused life is one thing, but how did it become your career? How did it all start?

By training I am a scientist. I worked at a pharmaceutical company for 15 years and am honored to have been part of a team that brought three lifesaving drugs to the market. However, in 2019 I found myself unceremoniously unemployed. It wasn’t a performance issue, they simply did away with my division. In big corporations it is never personal, just a numbers game. I vowed that I would never rely on someone else for a paycheck and that I would generate my own income and have more control over my finances.

Can you share a story about the biggest challenges you faced when you were first starting? How did you resolve that? What are the main lessons or takeaways from that story?

The fear! Putting yourself out there is terrifying. How do I find clients, how do I share my knowledge, am I good enough to teach others, can I actually make money doing this? I’m sure every entrepreneur feels this way when starting out. The main thing that gave me the courage to keep going was hiring a coach. I found a husband and wife coaching team, and they gave me so many tools and gave such wise guidance on how to get started and how to grow my business. Once in their program I bonded with their other clients and we have formed this community of support since we are all on the same path.

Can you share with us how the work you are doing is helping to make a bigger impact in the world? Can you share a story that illustrates that?

I think just the story of my son is a great example — this diet is transformational. It has so many benefits besides weight loss that I don’t think many know about. They think it is just a fad diet when it in fact is a lifestyle that improves your health greatly.

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

Right now I am working on making my program more accessible — I’m working with an app designer to make my program available on the go. My son and I are also planning to launch a CBD line as an add on to the lifestyle also. He is working hard creating great recipes to include CBD.

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

Desire to serve — if you get into the wellness industry solely to make money it isn’t going to work. You have to truly have a desire to help people in order to have the right kind of energy to be transformational. I’ve tried MLMs in the past and they were never successful. I viewed them as a way to generate extra money so my heart was not in th right place. This is a passion project to me — failure is not an option.

Courage — Going from years of a steady paycheck to becoming an entrepreneur is scary stuff! I am single, I have a mortgage and kids and bills due every month. In the beginning it feels like stepping off a ledge. There are no guarantees, so I suggest doing your homework and having a solid business plan in place before leaving the 9 to 5.

Being coachable — I think having a coach is instrumental in not having to invest time or energy to reinvent the wheel. I have no advertising skills, I can’t code or build a website, I can’t spend my entire day reaching out in every group on every social media platform — you need to learn from others and be taught which activities are critical, and which you should delegate to others.

OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the main focus of our interview. Let’s begin with a basic definition of terms so that all of us are on the same page. Wellness is an incredibly broad topic. How would you define the term “Wellness”? Can you explain what you mean?

I think of wellness as any activity that improves your overall physical and/or mental wellbeing. I think the last 20 months have taught us that is it not just physical health that we need to focus on, but mental health is just as important to focus on. I know the stress of the lifestyle changes that we have endured through the pandemic can be debilitating — I didn’t hug my grandmother for so long! The mental toll of isolation and fear of the unknown has to be a top focus for all. I did a lot more meditation and breathing exercises to reduce my stress levels.

As an expert, this might be intuitive to you, but it will be instructive to expressly articulate this. Can you please share a few reasons with our readers about why focusing on our wellness should be a priority in our lives?

I think the pandemic is a prime example of why wellness is so important. We were thrust into a new way of living — isolation, telecommuting, telehealth, virtual school — going days without seeing another human can be so harmful to our mental health. I lost loved ones during lockdown and couldn’t attend their funeral, I lost loved ones to COVID — people need to have tools in place to deal with these stressors. Our education system does not teach kids these techniques early in life. I learned to meditate by watching YouTube videos. When I talk about my daily affirmations or using the Law of Attraction people look at me like I am crazy when we should be using these tools from an early age. We give kids vitamins daily to protect their physical health, we need to give them tools to protect their mental health too.

Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. What are your “5 Things You Need To Create A Highly Successful Career In The Health and Wellness Industry”? If you can, please share a story or an example for each.

You need money, time, lots of tech knowledge, tools to keep you organized, and a supportive mentor. Entrepreneurship is not a get rich quick scheme. I have my MBA and I still had no clue how to get started. From my journey into the coaching industry, I’ve learned that you need to make a considerable investment in yourself. You need to invest in courses to get certified in your area of focus. You should invest in a coach to ensure you have a good support system. You need to invest in advertising so that people know your business even exists and know why you are a great fit for them. You need a place to share your information, like a website. This leads to needing to have a firm grasp of technology because someone has to code and update that website and build in the tools you need to share your information with people. That is completely outside my realm of expertise, so I invested in someone to build the website for me and create tutorials on how to perform certain functions on that site. One of the key things I learned from my coaches is that you need to systematize your daily business activities. We built a custom SOP that I follow on a daily basis so that I ensure that all critical tasks are completed consistently. I keep a tracker in my google docs to record my activities, new conversations, new clients, new events, new sales to track my progress and be able to pinpoint areas that may need tweaking. And I know business coached love to use the tagline that they work from anywhere for only a few hours each week, but that is not the reality when you are first starting out. You need to invest a significant amount of time when starting out, I am not sure if I will ever be the type of coach to only spend a few hours a week on my business. And what I think is most important is finding a solid mentor. I’ve realized that since I’ve started this venture my social circle has changed completely. I spend most of my time with other entrepreneurs since we provide a lot of support to one another. My social media accounts look nothing like they did two years ago — everything has shifted to the entrepreneur areas of my life rather than what half of my Facebook feed cooked for dinner last night 😊 The social media algorithms pick up on this, because instead of showing me cute puppy/baby videos I get videos from Grant Cardone or Russel Brunson with their entrepreneurial tips and tools. I spend more time in coaching groups rather than my main page because that is where I find my useful information. But mostly I spend time on my coaches’ private group page because that is where my tribe is.

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

Once my son got sick I was faced with the overwhelming reality that discrimination against the disabled is staggering. He wasn’t allowed to take the bus, go on class trips, participate in activities at school. Once he was older he has had job offers rescinded, had been fired from jobs who determined that it was to dangerous to employ him, I could write an entire book about our experiences. So for me, it is focusing on improving the wellness of people who are differently abled by removing the stigma surrounding mental health and physical disabilities. We should celebrate and embrace those who are different from us. It allows people to perform at their best when they can show up as their authentic self.

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.

Elon Musk, for sure. I would love to learn how he channels such innovation and builds businesses. I also want to learn more about one of his more recent projects, Neuralink.

How can our readers further follow your work online?

My website is www.hotmessmamma.com which is a great way to learn about my program. Also, my FaceBook page is where I communicate with people the most and have grown a very supportive private group where people share recipes and tips and give each other encouragement. That address is https://www.facebook.com/groups/hotmessmamma/.

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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