“Listen to what your body needs”, Cait Scudder of The Radiant Enterpreneur and Parveen Panwar, Mr. Activated

If you want to make something a normal part of your life, you need to make sure it’s something that excites you or makes you feel good. Listen to your body and choose movement that your body needs that day, whether it’s a run or a yoga session. Splurge on skin care products, bubble bath […]

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If you want to make something a normal part of your life, you need to make sure it’s something that excites you or makes you feel good. Listen to your body and choose movement that your body needs that day, whether it’s a run or a yoga session. Splurge on skin care products, bubble bath or even a cool water bottle that you’ll want to use. And if all else fails, schedule in the time you need to take care of yourself. It only takes 21 days to form a habit.

As a part of our series about “How Anyone Can Build Habits For Optimal Wellness, Performance, & Focus”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Cait Scudder.

Cait Scudder is a former high school teacher-turned-entrepreneur whose work has been featured in Forbes, Fast Company, Business Insider, and more. An internationally-recognized online business expert, Cait is a TEDx speaker, host of the Born to Rise Podcast, and CEO of a 7-figure company — and she’s on a mission to reach and empower ten million driven, bold-hearted women so they can uncover their zone of genius and use it to create profitable, purpose-driven businesses that change the world. You can follow her on Instagram @caitscudder or on her website, caitscudder.com

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive into the main focus of our interview, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?

Absolutely! I grew up in Glens Falls, New York in a very much working-class family. My dad was an entrepreneur and jack of all trades so I’ve had entrepreneurship in my blood from the earliest age. I started my first business at age 7 selling bracelets on the side of the road. My multi-decade career as a competitive athlete — basketball was my main sport — began when I was in my early elementary school years. I think my love for coaching and being coached comes from decades of coaching.

What or who inspired you to pursue your career? We’d love to hear the story.

When I moved to Bali in 2016 to be with my fiance (now husband), I became fascinated with online entrepreneurship and the digital nomad life. I was a type A achiever and earned my Masters of Teaching at age 23. I was somewhat sheltered in New England academia and prestigious schools and I never imagined I could use my love for leadership, education, curricula building, creative expression, and personal development and combine them into a career of my own choosing.

When I moved to Bali and saw other digital entrepreneurs building personal brands that solved problems outside of any institution, I knew it was exactly what I wanted to do.

It still took me over a year and a half of sitting on the sidelines and watching others do it, before I took the leap and decided to go for it. When I launched my coaching business in May of 2017, there was no turning back!

None of us can achieve success without some help along the way. Was there a particular person who you feel gave you the most help or encouragement to be who you are today? Can you share a story about that?

I’ve drawn inspiration both from books and podcasts as well as personal relationships. I’ve had several mentors and coaches that have inspired me, lifted me up, and fueled me forward.

Of all my supportive influences, I truly have to acknowledge that my husband, Toby, has been both a mentor business wise (he’s started and scaled multiple ventures himself), and an unshakable mindset encouragement for me. He’s seen me go from a barefoot broke yogi with big dreams to a successful 7-figure CEO who continues to rise. He’s always championed the big vision I have for myself and reminded me of what I’m capable of in my hardest moments. I’m so grateful to get to walk through business and life with him.

Can you share the funniest or most interesting mistake that occurred to you in the course of your career? What lesson or take away did you learn from that?

In November of 2018, I experienced a badly flopped launch. We’re talking a launch that netted 497 dollars, and it was after my biggest launch to date, which netted 60,000 dollars just the month before in October of 2018. I felt so ashamed. I felt like I’d just ruined my career as a business coach. A 500 dollars launch?! Who would ever trust me to help them sell their work, and grow a successful business when I was incapable of doing it myself? That was the imposter in my head.

Thankfully, this “failure” taught me one of the most important lessons of all in business. I learned the importance and necessity of finding neutral in the face of any failure in order to not spiral down into a negative hole of self-destruction. And most importantly, I was able to look at and analyze the failure itself to learn another valuable lesson — how to improve next time.

When I shifted my perspective and adopted this mindset, I went from feeling like a complete failure, to actually being able to see what went wrong and ensure my next launch was another multiple 5 figure launch, which it was.

I realized that I didn’t give myself enough time to market, had a very limited open window, and marketed during the noisiest time of the year (Black Friday weekend), for an offer that deserved weeks of warm up time. These lessons have served me well and by shifting my launch strategy, I’ve developed as one of my most powerful assets as a business coach. I’ve gone on to have 500,000 dollars launches in 2020.

Had I believed the voice in my head that told me I was a fraud after that failed 500 dollars launch, I never would have solved the actual problems I needed to solve to improve, and I never would have achieved the results that were waiting for me on the other side.

The road to success is hard and requires tremendous dedication. This question is obviously a big one, but what advice would you give to a young person who aspires to follow in your footsteps and emulate your success?

Self-belief is your biggest and most important asset. Don’t get caught up in trying to foresee and figure out the ‘how’ before you start a task or project. Set your sights HIGH and dare to proclaim out loud what it is you actually want to achieve. Cultivate the bravery and the inner courage to take the risk to pursue that goal and get support in your corner from those who have personally blazed the trail before you. This is how you can create a reality for yourself beyond your wildest dreams!

When I was earning 38,000 dollars a year as a teacher, grinding myself into the ground, the idea that I could make that in a DAY doing what I love was laughable. Now, it’s normal. Don’t ever set yourself up for failure by not believing your success is possible. Dream big. Go big. You were born to do this.

Is there a particular book that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

Daring Greatly by Brene Brown was a massive catalyst for me when I was pursuing a path of leadership and authentic brand building. It’s not a marketing book, but it showed me the importance of both boldness and vulnerability in creating an authentic movement. I strive every day to emulate these in the brand I’ve created, and I strive for my community to be a space that is inclusive, inspiring and REAL, modeling what courage looks like.

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

I grew up playing ice hockey and was obsessed with Wayne Gretsky. My favorite quote is, “You’ll miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

If you never risk going for it, you’ll never know the reward waiting for you on the other side. Take the shot. Take the risk. Go for it.

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

I am obsessed with the programs we have inside CSI, and the free content we have available as well! At the moment, we’re pouring a lot into my business podcast, Born to Rise, which offers free weekly training for aspiring and established entrepreneurs.

OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the core focus of our interview. 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?

Habits become what you do over and over and your beliefs impact your behaviors. Your thoughts impact your actions. That’s why it’s critical to develop powerful, positive habits of mind AND action.

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

I have made it a habit to focus on two things in my mental game. First, I like to maintain a strong clear vision for where I want to go, and I like to revisit my vision frequently through journaling, affirmations, and visualization meditation. The second habit is having gratitude for what I already have. These two practices keep my feeling in a state of abundance and clear focus on where I am going while enjoying and appreciating the ride.

On the physical plane, I have made it a non-negotiable to move my body every. Single. Day. Even while 41 weeks pregnant. Even in early postpartum.

Our success isn’t built in our minds alone, it’s built from the energy we contain within us, as humans with a body.

By incorporating movement into my everyday habit, I’ve committed to myself to have my physical vessel feel as energized as possible, which allows me to show up for my business (not to mention my family and personal life) with the highest possible vibration and energy.

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

Focus on your WHY. Whether you’re giving up coffee, cigarettes, self-deprecating thoughts, sleeping in instead of working out or whatever it might be,it’s so easy to fall back into step with what’s comfortable and known. In order to rise above any bad habits, it’s critical to keep your motivation centered on WHY you’re making this shift in the first place. WHY are you getting out of bed to exercise? TO feel your best, to parent better, to be a better leader and sharper thinker. The desire to reach these goals has to outweigh the temporary comfort of staying stuck in the bad habit.

I find that the most powerful motivation is when you’re focused on the DESIRE you’re moving toward.

Let’s talk about creating good habits in three areas, Wellness, Performance, and Focus. Can you share three good habits that can lead to optimum wellness. Please share a story or example for each.

  • You have to move your body, every day. I try to go for a morning walk or run and I try to leave it at home. It’s so easy these days to be constantly plugged in and online. As an entrepreneur, I value creativity and innovation and if I don’t give myself the space to unplug, I just can’t get those juices flowing.
  • Get out into nature, find time and space to unplug. Recently I was in a beautiful marsh running and I didn’t have my phone. Now I have an amazing playlist, but when I left the technology at home, it activates a different part of my brain and I’m more in tune with my own breath and the world. There’s a deep reset that happens when we take the time to connect with something bigger than ourselves or our to-do list. Sometimes I want to reconnect with the birds and the sound of the breeze.
  • Listen to what your body needs. As women, there are times in the month when we need different things. If you are feeling your self-care has been slipping, move your body based on your intuition to re-calibrate and reset. You have wisdom inside your body when you take the time to curate it.
  • Get enough water and sleep. While these may seem super basic, I find that staying hydrated and well rested have the biggest impact on my mood, energy level, and overall feeling of wellness. Especially as a new mom, it’s easy to let both of these things slip by the wayside.
  • I recommend having a water bottle that becomes part of a routine to fill and keep at your desk — you’ll be much more likely to drink enough water if you have a vessel to drink from reminding you to do so.
  • And as far as getting enough sleep — have a set bedtime and stick to it. Turn off your phone or put it on airplane mode if you use it as an alarm the next day and honor this boundary as a bookend to your day.
  • Have an evening ritual. I’ve always had a routine, but I’ve been super mindful about really making my ritual special. I have a special face wash and mask that I have been using every single night. It doesn’t matter what your routine is, but some simple act of taking care of yourself and taking care of your skin is important. We do so much in these bodies. We need to take the time to nourish it and treat our bodies with kindness.

Can you help explain some practices that can be used to develop those habits?

If you want to make something a normal part of your life, you need to make sure it’s something that excites you or makes you feel good. Listen to your body and choose movement that your body needs that day, whether it’s a run or a yoga session. Splurge on skin care products, bubble bath or even a cool water bottle that you’ll want to use. And if all else fails, schedule in the time you need to take care of yourself. It only takes 21 days to form a habit.

Can you share three good habits that can lead to optimal performance at work or sport? Please share a story or example for each.

  • Make strategic lists. Sometimes it can be overwhelming even to think about what we need to get done in a single day. So if you’re trying to make a business plan for the entire year, it can be mind-boggling. Start first by jotting down what your top goals are. Once they are all on the page, really look at them. Are there items that you don’t really need? Which ones will cause the most growth in your business? Focus there first. Just pick three goals per quarter. Set strategic goals that will motivate and focus yourself and your team, then work backwards to figure out how to get there.
  • Keep a journal of the things that work. Sometimes, when we are embroiled in the day-to-day, we forget to take note of what does work. Commit to keeping a journal where you write down everything (no matter how minute), that moves the needle forward in your business. By keeping track of these things, you’ll know how to focus your energy in your business to do the work that matters. Don’t forget your “why”. Whether it’s keeping a vision board on your desktop or writing out your goals, ultimately we are much more likely to execute on your vision when we remember the ”why” behind them.
  • Delegate. The best way to ensure that your business will not grow is to insist on doing everything yourself. If you can’t learn how to delegate, you cannot grow your business. Period. It might take time to train a team member on exactly how you want a task accomplished, but then it’s off your plate. Permanently. By empowering your team to take ownership of certain tasks, you are increasing your own ability to tackle the larger big picture items that really do need your attention.

Can you help explain some practices that can be used to develop those habits?

Make sure you have a pen and a notebook handy so that when it’s time to write down a win or get your goals on paper, there’s no excuse. Buy some fancy notebooks if that motivates you. But always make sure that instead of putting something off until later, do it when the thought comes to you. It’s the best way to make sure it gets done.

Can you share three good habits that can lead to optimal focus? Please share a story or example for each.

  • Turn off the notifications on your phone. Or better yet, leave your phone on it’s charger when you have something important to do. The constant ping of a text, voicemail or incoming email breaks our concentration and can make any task take 2–3 times longer if we’re allowing ourselves to be distracted.
  • Creating “power hours” during the day. Set aside chunks of your day where you will 100% focused on getting a certain task done. This is time when your phone is off, your assistant knows not to bother you and your door is closed. You shouldn’t even get up to use the restroom or get a drink if you can help it. Supercharge an hour of your time and it will pay dividends throughout the day.
  • Block your time. This one’s easy and makes a HUGE difference. First, take a look at your to-do list and group similar tasks together. Then grab you calendar. The idea is to do different tasks on different days. I have some days for client work, some days for content creation abd some days for high level strategic planning. When you compartmentalize your calendar to only be doing one kind of thinking/action in your business each day you allow yourself to drop into deeper focus on the days that matter.

Can you help explain some practices that can be used to develop those habits?

Most of the habits you’ll need to create around focus include just shutting off your phone, grabbing your calendar and scheduling your day and week. It’s tempting to let distractions in. Don’t. If you can focus on your work during work time, that frees up all of your non-work time for self-care, relationships, parenting and everything that makes you happy.

As a leader, you likely experience times when you are in a state of Flow. Flow has been described as a pleasurable mental state that occurs when you do something that you are skilled at, that is challenging, and that is meaningful. Can you share some ideas from your experience about how we can achieve a state of Flow more often in our lives?

1. Results happen when a clear decision meets aligned action. Four and a half years ago I was broke. Your life can turn around FAST when you decide that it’s all going to work and is rigged in your favor.

2. Your values and vision will determine where you end up. Revisit these often.

3. Attaching your happiness and self-worth to your income plummets both. Cultivate happiness and enoughness NOW and watch the overflow of your joy and creativity help you create more wealth.

4. Relationships are the lifeblood of business. Loving your people is, in fact, very professional. If you’re too busy and important to champion your people fiercely, you’re in the wrong industry.

5. Ruthless boundaries and a wildly generous heart can coexist.

Ok, we are nearly done. You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good for the greatest number of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.

Something I hold near and dear to my heart is to pursue women’s equality in the workplace and every place. It’s why I focus my work on helping other women become financially and entrepreneurially empowered.

How can our readers further follow your work online?

They can to listen to my podcast, Born to Rise Podcast, join my Facebook group, The Radiant Entrepreneur FB Group or connect with me on Instagram @caitscudder.

Thank you for these really excellent insights, and we greatly appreciate the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success.

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