It’s called the only constant.
We crave it and we hate it.
Like so many, my life has been a parade of shifts and unknowns - particularly since last March.
My 2020 losses were harsh: my in-person practice was ordered to cease operations, my family visit to Poland got cancelled, a romance ended and I lost friends and teachers down rabbit holes of twisted conspiracy theories.
I was stripped of what I’d known and open to a complete reinvention of how I make a living.
At first, freedom overwhelmed me. I could do _anything_ and suddenly, so many things looked very shiny.
At the same time, I felt stuck: my decades in bodywork left me feeling under-qualified to try anything radically new.
Tense with trepidation and fearful of the global unknown, disorientated by the mounting mysteries, I kept showing up to my life as a pandemic-displaced bodyworker, reaching out to clients who understood the value of my work beyond the physical touch as I migrated my sessions to the telephone and teaching to zoom, reinventing myself.
I’ve kept evolving.
Eleven years ago I had my first coaching experience and knew it was a modality I wanted to spin into my trade. Life’s indirect path led to a sales training for holistic practitioners which helped me grow my massage therapy practice and set me on course to build an online business, leveraging how I teach, write and do design alongside the body-awareness which has long been at the core of my philosophy and livelihood.
When I worked hands-on in-person, however, I was so tired at the end of each day that I didn’t have the bandwidth to build anything new.
I had a bare, static brochure website.
With 2020’s shutdowns, I designed a new site for my new business, got teaching on zoom, opened an online store for my guidebooks and recordings, and began to offer coaching services. I had been doing it unofficially for years, helping friends hone in their visions and sort out business strategies while also helping them feel better physically in their bodies.
I freely gave feedback on marketing copy and shared how to leverage a practice, structure event marketing and pitch package offers, without overexerting body or spirit – genuinely excited about business tactics, and about helping women succeed.
Last summer, sitting outside with a friend, sharing the lessons that grew my businesses, she stopped me mid-sentence with, “I want to hire you as my coach.”
Thus I attracted my first real business coaching client.
To her delight, I had theory and experience, plus decent design skills and even better writing. Beyond just advice and strategy, we co-created a new website that reflected who she was becoming and how she wished to show up in the world.
We did this in a handful of soulful, relaxing sessions using the guided technique of Yoga Nidra, which I adapted for business coaching clients with branding and marketing topics embedded in the stages.
While they are horizontal, with eyes closed, I listen and record my clients’ words into worksheets. The process lets us bypass inner-critics and hear the real intuitive wisdom.
The results are stunning. Dropping into the body – the heart, the gut, the pelvis – we find poetry, meaningful words that speak to other people’s hearts, guts and pelvises.
All of us on Earth, in bodies, feel so much every day. Those of us building businesses feel things specific to entrepreneurship: doubts, frustrations, fear and overwhelm as well as, with the right support, the sweetness of success.
The feelings happen as sensations in the body. As a bodyworker and entrepreneur, I know our physical wellness is entwined with all of our projects and endeavors’ wellbeing.
So it feels like a homecoming, to pair these two passions.
I have coached folks to deepen their breath when they feel anxious and teach many techniques to bring ease to the parts of the body that often experience tension or hold stress like the jaw or the digestive system.
From inspiring first steps, through getting unstuck to navigating conflicts or challenges, tuning into the body never fails. The sensations guide us to answers and give affirming feedback.
These are crucial tools to walk the entrepreneurial path: mastering the emotions that hold us back and cultivating the ones that move us forward.
From vision to strategy, along with the copy and website design, I have been reaching for tools from my newspaper and music marketing years, as I weave in my decades teaching meditation.
With over eighteen years running my own businesses, I give advice on marketing, sales and client communications like I give a yoga class. I get adult learners.
My unique bodywork-based business coaching is attracting my newest clients - and as a seasoned business owner, watching for patterns like this guides my growth.
I am still available to support people with personal care needs and I have been delighted to learn that many of my current by-telephone clients are so satisfied by my remote modality that hands-on massage, in their words “is no longer a priority.”
This month, I am revealing a new homepage to position my flagship holistic business coaching offer and look forward to sharing more from this intersection of conscious embodiment and right livelihood.
Please check out the new olgachwa.com, sign up for my newsletter if you haven’t yet and give me a call if you have been thinking about starting your own business or feeling stuck in the one you run. I’ve got an inspiring biz-nidra to share with you!