Coach Ali is the CEO of MyWellCo, which is focused on people feeling better, living better, and having more of what they want in their lives. Ali was working in the corporate world for 10+ years and was experiencing burnout and getting chronic migraines. She made a move to LA and became an event director. Following her move to the west coast, the pandemic happened. As many of us tried to do, Ali found the silver lining in wellness. She began her wellness journey and turned that self-voyage into a career. Ali discusses the techniques that she uses with her clients and that she brings into her own life. She also expresses the importance of accountability and how a coach can be a guide for them through this process. At the end of the conversation, Ali gives her take on how wellness coaching has been transformed due to the pandemic.
Voiceover [00:00:14] Three, two, one, lift-off! We have lift-off!
Sam Jayanti [00:00:35] Coach Ali is a certified wellness coach, peak performance expert, and the founder of My WelleCo. Her programs are designed for busy entrepreneurs and professionals who want to bring their A-game to work and their lives. She works with our clients on actionable steps, helping them build micro habits and make small changes that make a big difference. Her work has helped her clients reach their wellness breakthroughs so that they feel better, live better, and have more of what they want in their lives. And it’s a pleasure to welcome you to Ideamix Radio today.
Coach Ali [00:01:12] Thank you so much and so happy to be here!
Sam Jayanti [00:01:16] So, Ali, tell us a little bit about you and how you came to become a wellness coach.
Coach Ali [00:01:24] Yeah, sure. So I was in the corporate world doing the hustle for like ten plus years, experiencing a ton of burnout and was getting, like, chronic migraines. And I moved to and I was, like, on a personal passion to really figure out how to heal myself without using medications, how to get rid of these migraines. And it was just like a long-lasting battle. And I moved to L.A. to be an event director during that pandemic and everything shut down. And I really my migraines at that point were super bad and my stress was at an all-time high. And I thought you know what? This is my chance. And this is kind of like the silver lining during the pandemic to really go all in and kind of take this wellness journey and make it a career. And so at that point, I decided to go all-in, get my LLC and go full-time in wellness and really help people who have similar stories to mine or maybe experience a lot of burnout and have these medical issues that they may be struggling with and they want to make a change and really help them.
Sam Jayanti [00:02:47] I love it that you converted what was a real challenge taking up a new event director job during the pandemic, or just as it got underway into a real opportunity for yourself, as you said, to use the learnings from your own personal journey to actually help others. Because as you and I both know, there are so many people, especially women in this situation where we have been conditioned to seek and want it all and sort of been told our whole lives that we absolutely can and must have it all. And there are a series of compromises we make along the way, right? Like putting our mental health and wellness into a box and suppressing that while we’re on sort of this upward trajectory of the next job and the marriage and the next moves and the next goal, basically. And so it’s wonderful that you were able to really take what was a tough set of circumstances and turn them to your advantage and have such an impact on others.
Coach Ali [00:04:00] Yeah! Thanks! Yeah, it was definitely a challenge. And but I think it taught me a lot about resilience and I feel like I really can relate to it. Like people who are struggling too. It just felt like a really great learning opportunity and a very pivotal point in my personal health and wellness journey like with on that I like going off all my migraine medications like reducing my stress and it was kind of like a really big aha moment for myself.
Sam Jayanti [00:04:33] So is this how you described how you work with clients? Let’s take a quick look.
Coach Ali [00:04:39] Hi there. I’m Ali. I am a certified health and wellness coach and peak performance expert. And I coach busy entrepreneurs and professionals who want to bring their A-game to life and work. So let’s work together to help you feel better, live better, and get more out of what you want, out of life. And listen, I am not about to give you a long list of to-dos. Rather, I believe in measurable progress and daily wins. I want to be your partner in helping you achieve your wellness breakthrough so you can start feeling better today. Listen, I know how frustrating it can be to navigate the wellness trends. Do this, do that every day. It literally feels like it’s something new. Trust me, I’ve been there and I get it. Overcoming my own health challenges. I know firsthand what works and what doesn’t. When it comes to wellness for busy people, I am obsessed with being at my best and helping you get your wellness edge in a simple and sustainable way. So that’s a little about me and I so look forward to meeting you. Talk soon! Bye!
Sam Jayanti [00:05:45] So, Ali, I want to pick up on something you said in the video. You’re working with your clients so that they feel better and live better. But that happened in the course of overcoming your own challenges. When you’re working with clients, do you find that they’re facing very similar challenges to the ones you faced, or are they quite different? Do they span a wide range? Tell us a little about that.
Coach Ali [00:06:14] The common denominator is that. Something’s not working and people are ready to make a change, but they don’t know-how. And a lot of times it could come from a source of not being fulfilled in what you’re doing and not knowing your purpose. It could be just like pure fatigue and exhaustion where it is just like you feel like you have nothing left to give. It’d be like a similar journey, medically, like mine, with migraines. But I think, like the common denominator, it is just kind of like. They’ve tried a lot of wellness things before that haven’t worked for them. And similar to the new lighting, everything is on the shelves. You looked for that magic pill. You’ve tried X, Y, and Z diet, and it doesn’t work. And my approach is really about simple and sustainable solutions using science and micro habits to really make things stick. And that’s generally a piece that people are excited about because it’s very easy to implement and easy to start.
Sam Jayanti [00:07:24] Are your clients, would you say they are of a particular type? Are they mostly women? Are they also men? Do they fall into a particular age demographic? Do they tend to be working professionals or are some of them also stay-at-home moms? How would you describe them?
Coach Ali [00:07:40] Yeah, it’s a range, but I would say more. And like the millennial older millennial category and a little bit more female, but definitely some men too. And the people who are really coachable, I would say, who are ready to make a change, ready to like don’t have as much resistance to change. And then generally they’re kind of more of like the high achievers, like go-getters that generally like the entrepreneurial mindset or like a C-suite, anything between.
Sam Jayanti [00:08:15] Got it. I love the term coachable, and it’s a question that we confront all the time. So, in our direct-to-consumer business, but also in our B-to-B business, where we work with employees at companies. And I think for every coach, it’s hugely frustrating to work with somebody who isn’t coachable because it just feels like you’re sort of beating your head against a wall. And it’s that classic thing once you take a horse to water, but you can’t force it to drink. How do you determine that in your clients? What are some of the things that you look for and how do you think your clients, come to the conclusion that they need to work with a coach?
Coach Ali [00:09:06] Yeah. I think the most important piece about coaching and the biggest reward for me is the accountability piece. So a lot of people come to me when like they, you know, the things to do, but you’re not doing it because you’re not holding yourself accountable. So you need someone else to help you be accountable. So I think coaching, just helps you get there faster. Like, it’s not like rocket science. It’s not things that you haven’t heard before. It’s just things just helping to be your partner. And, like, setting aside that time and knowing that you had someone who’s going to be checking up on you. And then I think…
Sam Jayanti [00:09:41] It’s a lot like working with a physical trainer. Right?
Coach Ali [00:09:44] Exactly!
Sam Jayanti [00:09:45] People have been doing this for decades at this point. And it’s not that any of us can’t go to the gym and work out on our own. It’s the for many of us, it’s way more effective when we’re doing it with a trainer.
Coach Ali [00:09:56] Totally! Totally! And I think you just need to like it. The two things for coachability I would say are one and just. Having a time lock is like knowing that you’re able to dedicate time. Like if it’s someone who wants to make a change but is really resistant to changing the schedule to find more time to do it, it doesn’t work because anything that you need to work on like you need to implement it into your life. So I think like that time lock and then it’s really like a mental piece. Like trying to, like, understand through that first conversation, like, what their limiting beliefs are and helping them overcome those. And then if you’re able to kind of like unlock a piece of that and that initial session, then you’re on a good path.
Sam Jayanti [00:10:45] Makes a ton [00:10:45]of sense. You [1.4s] talked a little bit in this short video about some of the techniques that you use to work with your clients. Let’s take a quick look.
Coach Ali [00:11:00] Hi, I’m Ali. Question for you. Do you start your day responding to everyone else’s needs rather than your own? Are you feeling like you’re constantly on the edge of burnout? Do you control your own calendar or do you feel like your calendar controls you? We have to put our own oxygen mask on first before we serve anyone else, but I totally understand that is easier said than done. So I’m here to help. Let’s get you back in control of your own life. Together, we will design a practical, sustainable morning routine that actually works for you and excites you. The result is a more productive, energetic, less stressed version of yourself. And the secret is leveraging the power of micro habits that will make a huge difference for you without the overwhelm. Welcome to Wellness made simple! Let’s have a virtual coffee! I would love to meet you and talk about your wellness goals and help you achieve your wellness breakthroughs so you can live your best life. Talk soon!
Sam Jayanti [00:12:00] So one of the things, Ali, that you addressed was the importance of micro habits and making wellness simple. And I think both of those are such interesting concepts. There’s been so much research now on micro habits and their importance for anybody at any age and stage of their lives applied to such a variety of different realms. Tell me a little bit about how you work with your clients to help them understand the importance of micro habits and how to implement them in their daily lives.
Coach Ali [00:12:35] Yeah, so I think Micro Habits is really unique and it’s definitely something that people are picking up on because the whole concept of it is that you’re going to do just one thing every day and you’re gonna make it so simple that you’re setting yourself up for success and there’s no way you can, like, fail at it. So I think that a lot of times we get like overambitious and we set ourselves up for failure by having a whole long list of things that we’re going to try to do on a Monday when we’ve never done it before. And then we set ourselves up for failure. And then it’s really hard to recover from that. So the beauty with the micro habits is that once you do it, you get this dopamine rush, that you achieved it and then you get the momentum to continue and to continue to spring forward. And even though they’re little, you’re just getting that even as small as 1% better every day. And it really has that momentum to really move forward.
Sam Jayanti [00:13:36] So what’s an example of a correctly framed micro habit versus one that might not be achievable or might not be a good construct?
Coach Ali [00:13:46] Yeah! So if you decide that you want to work out more and then on day one, you try to say you’re going to run three miles at 8:00 in the morning and you’re not a morning person like something like that it’s very difficult to go right out the back. They think it’s about giving yourself some grace. So for that, maybe it’s you’re going to set up your shoes right next to your bed the night before you have your whole outfit ready, you know? You know exactly what time you’re going to wake up. And maybe you just put your shoe designing for one walk around the block. And then that’s it. Like, it could take 3 minutes. It could take 5 minutes. Really simple. And then people say, okay, well, that’s not going I’m not going to, like, change my life from that as I guess. But that momentum will and you’ll also apply that momentum in various forms of your life. And I think too with like habits that people like making your bed isn’t going to change your life. Like, that’s a great morning routine, but that peace in the bed isn’t really going to do anything for you. So I really like to challenge people to think of like, what our actual habits are, what’s the greater purpose and how is that helping? How are you achieving that great purpose, through those micro habits in your morning routine?
Sam Jayanti [00:15:13] So it might be that for t two to speak to your example for a second. Making your bed is not in and of itself a super important thing, but it might make you start the day feeling more organized and ordered in your life, right?
Coach Ali [00:15:30] Yeah!
Sam Jayanti [00:15:31] Yeah. Totally makes sense. And. Do you feel that when people struggle with developing a wellness practice because it encompasses so many different realms, it’s what you eat when you eat? Do you exercise? What do you do for exercise? There might be something you do on the mindfulness front that is a couple of minutes of meditation a day to help sort of regroup and center yourself. Do you sleep enough? You know, there’s such a mix of things and it’s so peculiar to each person’s life and at this stage of life that they’re at. If you had to sort of describe the framework that you think about wellness through, what would that be or what would the elements be?
Coach Ali [00:16:26] Yeah, I think I categorize it really into mind, body, soul, and setting. And with the mind, I think that’s the number one because I think once you have a strong mindset and you kind of like look at the world in a way where you’re in control of your actions and your feelings and you have the power to have a different outlook. I think the rest of it kind of falls into place. The body would be food movement. The soul would really be about relationships and consciousness. And then setting is like the environment around you because it directly impacts how you feel, how you live your life. And yeah, so those are kind of like the four pillars.
Sam Jayanti [00:17:12] I like [00:17:12]those. So [1.0s] it’s a perfect opportunity to dove into a little mini-coach my session. So it’s wonderful for our listeners, I think, to get a sense of how you work with your clients and how you are as a coach. So pretend I’m a client of yours and you’re meeting me for the first time and we’re kicking off.
Coach Ali [00:17:37] Okay. Cool! Yeah! So awesome to meet you! Thanks for setting up this conversation! I’d like to just start with just understanding a little bit about you and what your current morning routine looks like.
Sam Jayanti [00:17:52] My morning routine is generally that I wake up feeling I haven’t had enough sleep. Probably around seven. And I don’t feel like I’ve ever really particularly been a morning person. But it just that’s the schedule. And I will generally spend some time with my children, will make myself some, you know, like a green juice and some tea in the morning. And that’s definitely a part of my morning ritual. Like the morning doesn’t feel like it started right unless I’ve done those two things. And I really like having some time to myself. So our kids have gone asks, you know, I and my husband’s gone off and I’ve just got even if it’s 10 minutes to myself to just sort of getting dressed, get organized for the day, to think about the day and then get started.
Coach Ali [00:19:00] Yeah! Cool! I love how you take some time to yourself in the morning. That’s really important! Definitely, a good foundation for a solid morning routine because I definitely feel that if you set your morning up for success, it kind of piggybacks into the rest. What would you… What’s the difference between your morning routine right now and then? What are you’re, like dream morning routine would be and why do you think like there’s a gap in between those?
Sam Jayanti [00:19:30] So my dream morning routine would be that I wake up earlier and that I have already done whatever form of exercise for the day because. Part of the I love to exercise and I do a real mix of things, all of which are wonderful, but it’s hard to get that in during the day. Sometimes I manage and we’ll go at lunchtime or we’ll find time at six or whatever, but that doesn’t happen consistently, and on the days that it doesn’t happen, it becomes a source of frustration. And so, in an ideal world, I would love to wake up earlier. Go do whatever it is, yoga class, go to the gym, whatever the activity is, and then sort of come back and start the rest of the morning feeling like I was both had that time to myself, but also gotten the kind of combination exercise, mindfulness, peace out of the way. You know?
Coach Ali [00:20:37] Got it. I think that makes sense. So I think then what our objective would be over the next 90 days as we’re kind of like really going to break down that block of time in the morning and look at how you’re currently spending it. And then we’re going to take one aspect of it and app movements really important. And you think that’s what would be a really helpful first step? We’re going to look at different ways to incorporate movement directly into your morning routine by time walking it out. And then we can look at things from the rest of your day that will help lend themselves to setting your morning up for success. And then we’re going to do really small steps throughout this time program, and if it doesn’t work, we can change it and we don’t have to be locked into it. And we’re going to find a way to incorporate that and get you from A to B. And then I’m going to be your accountability coach throughout the way to make sure that you are holding yourself accountable and texting you and reaching out to make sure that what we talk about for your new morning routine and the small, tiny steps that we’re taking to get to your dream one are aligning.
Sam Jayanti [00:21:52] Okay. That sounds good. I think having you follow up with me and hold me accountable with some reminders and things will actually make me do the thing rather than sort of push it off and say, well, not today maybe tomorrow.
Coach Ali [00:22:10] Yes! And the one tip I can give you is I’m not sure if you do this already, but I always recommend as a starting point, sleeping with your phone on airplane mode if you can. You could keep the wi-fi on if you need to if anyone needs to call or whatever. And then there’s a setting where you could do emergency calls, and challenging yourself to not look at your phone for the first at least hour of your day and allowing yourself to really be present and not looking at it right away because a lot of us will wake up and the first thing we do is look, we scroll and then what happens with that is that automatically right off the bat, we are letting whatever we see like subconsciously or consciously affect our mood and what we’re thinking immediately right off the bat. And we’re more sensitive and more easily triggered at that time because we’re just waking up. So I challenge you to maybe think about what your phone use in the morning is like and then really try to like not to look at it for the first hour at least and see how that feels as well.
Sam Jayanti [00:23:17] So it’s such an interesting point that you raised because I felt that I was quite good about this until probably a year into the pandemic when my kids went back to school and every morning would start with me waking up and leaving for my son in a total state of stress because I had to get these forms filled out so they could go to school that day. And that’s really when looking at my son, the first thing in the morning became the habit and all these sorts of sources of stress would start to percolate. And I didn’t respond to that email, and I did, you know, and it would sort of just set me in a weird place psychologically.
Coach Ali [00:24:03] Yup! Totally! Yeah. It really sticks with you throughout the entire day. I had gone to the like a lot of people use phones as their alarm clocks. I have gotten an actual alarm clock. I don’t use an obnoxious ringer for my phone. It’s called Lofty, and it wakes you up with, like, chirping birds. It’s very modern. And they have, like, pink noise and round noise and all the things. But like that in and of itself is really helpful and like being present, not giving yourself an immediate, like stress right off the bat. Yeah, that’s another jump.
Sam Jayanti [00:24:42] Okay, fantastic. Well, thank you so much.
Coach Ali [00:24:46] Thank you! It’s been a pleasure!
Sam Jayanti [00:24:48] [00:24:48]So, Ali, [0.2s] one last question before we wrap up. And this came into my mind as we were talking. Do you feel there’s so much research and so much in the news now about how the pandemic and this post-pandemic period have I mean, particularly for, I think, teens and young adults, but across the board has affected everyone’s mental health in some way or another. And more and more people are struggling with mental health issues coming out of this. Are you seeing that in your practice with your clients as well, that you’re just seeing more people struggling with things that they may not have been struggling with pre-pandemic?
Coach Ali [00:25:36] Totally! I think it’s kind of cause our bodies to kind of life in that state of, like, fear and uncertainty and. Feeling like it’s really hard to make progress. And so there’s like an extremely large mental block that wasn’t that is heightened because of the pandemic. So it’s like working through that for sure. It’s definitely been a topic of conversation I always recommend. Silencing yourself from the news as much as possible and really like looking at how much intake you are having of those external surroundings and limiting it at not eliminating it. Obviously, like you need to stay up to date as much as possible. So like, you know, that’s not living under a rock but really helping to educate and help understand that how much that a lot of times people just don’t realize, like how much that is they’re internalizing it. So helping to educate on that piece and provide suggestions of how to get out of that and like small mentorships along the way.
Sam Jayanti [00:26:56] Amazing. Excellent advice. Thank you so much for being with us today.
Coach Ali [00:27:01] Thank you!
Sam Jayanti [00:27:02] Thanks for listening today. You can subscribe wherever you get your podcasts. And while you’re there, please do review the show. We love hearing from you. So email us at info at the Ideamix radio com or Instagram DM us. Our episode this week was produced by the incomparable Martin Milewski with music by the awesome Nashville-based singer-songwriter Doug Allen. You can learn more about Doug at DougAllenMusic.com.
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