May 28, 2020
Today’s guest is the incredible Kelsey Murphy. Kelsey helps you redefine success to create a business and life you love. As a Business & Life Coach, Kelsey has worked with Fortune 500 companies, like Facebook & Twitter, industry thought leaders like Marie Forleo and her BSchoolers, as well as celebrity nutritionists, coaches, and other brilliant humans creating meaningful businesses and lives. Her coaching work has been featured in Forbes, Business Insider, Huffington Post, LiveStrong, Living Healthy, LaurenConrad.com and more.
When Kelsey’s not coaching, you can find her hosting the Whiskey & Work podcast giving her wise (and sometimes comical) advice on navigating the waters of business, life, and relationships. But on her other card, it might say snowboarder, eater, dreamer and fresh-air-addict.
Today, Kelsey dives into the meaning of success and how to define that for yourself and how perfectionism and fear of failure can be your biggest enemy. Kelsey has a wildly successful portfolio with some of the biggest names in the industry, so we sat down to talk all about networking, getting your foot in the door, dealing with rejection, and how to pitch yourself. Kelsey gives tangible strategies to use as you reach out to work with big names and brands.
Kelsey is a life and business coach. The path to get to where she is today is very windy and full of highs and lows.
Kelsey works with incredible humans who are either starting or growing their businesses. A lot of her work is focused on coaching Marie Forleo’s B-Schoolers. She also works with one on one clients who are often listeners to her Whiskey & Work podcast. Kelsey has a desire to redefine success and this is what led her to where she is today.
In the beginning, Kelsey placed a lot of importance on being financially independent. After graduating from college, she decided to jump into advertising. She began as an assistant and climbed her way up the ranks to eventually become the Director for Nintendo, Elizabeth Arden, and GoPro.
About a year or two into the job, she knew it was not the right job for her. On paper it looked great, yet she had a feeling that there was something off. For many years she stuck around at a job that was good, but not great.
Because she was fearful and unsure what was next, she stayed in the job a little too long and started to lose her confidence. She was losing her ability to operate from her internal GPS. She started to forget about the things she was passionate about and made her who she was.
Kelsey began a journey of self exploration and started by going to an Italian class. Her goal was to find a job that she loved, but she knew she had to start by putting one foot in front of the other. Taking the Italian class introduced her to a whole new family of people, which introduced her to new areas of San Francisco, which led her to travel around Italy for four weeks. There was a whole ripple effect of adventure because she simply said yes to one Italian class.
Kelsey went on several of these types of journeys. So much so that at one point she was in massage school orientations. She kept pivoting until she found what she wanted to do. Eventually, Kelsey was in a random free life coaching seminar in a subpar hotel in the middle of London. She sat down in the seminar feeling incredibly awkward, but as soon as they started talking she instantly felt at home. She knew she found her people. They began to talk about human psychology, values, and beliefs and how those show up in relationships and the world.
This was exactly what Kelsey cared about. All of a sudden, she recognized that this was the feeling she was searching for. From there, she began to build her business. Kelsey began to get one on one clients, speak at companies like Facebook and Twitter, and host workshops. It was all because Kelsey took the leap and went to a random Italian class. That was the beginning of following the spark and curiosity that led her down the road to where she is today.
Our version of success that we have in our brains is influenced by the people we are surrounded by. It’s influenced by what we see and believe is possible. When Kelsey was in her 9-5 she remembers looking around for mentors and people that she wanted to emulate. She couldn’t find any in her 9-5. There were people who had incredible personal lives and were amazing humans, but their work lives were incredibly intense. Or, there were people who were incredible at their job, but their personal life was lacking. Kelsey had a hard time finding proof that you could live a life where you make a great living and still show up for your kid’s field trips, have complete control over your schedule, and could operate at the level of hustle that you do or do not want to operate at. Kelsey didn’t see this for a long time in her career, and she began to believe it wasn’t possible. It was like a dream that she didn’t even know she had was being crushed. She thought it was just the reality of being a woman.
She had a dream to be a stay at home mom, but also had a dream of being a feminist woman who built her own career and did epic things. Kelsey went on a journey to find people that were potentially living a similar life where they could have both. This led her to stumble into the online business world. She began to see people that were creating lifestyles where they could be at home with their kids while still having thriving online businesses. She had to not only find them online but also meet them in person. She was able to meet and learn about people like Marie Forleo. Once she met these types of people it allowed her to believe in this vision of success that she always had deep down inside.
Once Kelsey started seeing other people out there doing it, she started to write down her own vision of success. She does this to this day and calls it her three-year manifesto. Kelsey envisions what her life would be like in three years if it were to be the dream life and writes it down. Kelsey thinks of how she wakes up each morning, what is the first thing she says to her husband, what type of clients she works with, what her workspace looks like, etc. She writes this all down and this becomes the thing that she operates from. This dictates how she plans out her weeks and days.
This is all possible because she started to see the proof that this version of success was true when she saw it in other people.
When you are first starting, we all have a tendency to be “perfectionists”. But, these perfectionist tendencies are actually just insecurities. Yes, we have a high standard for ourselves, but we are nervous about how the outside world will perceive us.
When Kelsey was starting out she was not only grappling with what others would think but also the idea of being a beginner. Oftentimes we program our brains to think that we are rewarded based on being an expert in something. But, when you are starting something new you have to recognize that you may not be an expert in the place that you want to eventually be an expert in, but you still come to the table with so much value.
You have so much value and you have so many expertises, skills, and life experiences that you can share just as you are right now. Starting is so much easier if you can recognize the value you already have because you are not trying to be something you are not. Even though you may have things you still need to learn, recognize you have amazing strengths.
Show up and share your experience and share why that experience is valuable. Everyone has something to share. Take something small and ask yourself why it is important.
For example, Kelsey recorded this podcast while sitting in her closet. Why is that important? It’s important to see that you can do things right where you are. Then you can dig deeper and ask why that’s important to realize. This is important because often we are in crazy situations where we feel like we don’t have a lot of control and we often don’t. But, we do have control over what we do. We can figure things out, be creative, and not take no for an answer. When the front door doesn’t open go around to the back. When the back doesn’t open, find a window. If Kelsey really wants to share her message she knew it wasn’t going to be easy with two kids at home she needed to make it work. It shows everyone else that you can find a way to make things work if you really want to. From this little example it shows that you can pull a story and a profound thought based on you, your experience, and what you care about in the world. We operate out of a place of values, so figure those out and share with the world.
The most common question Kelsey gets is how she started to work with Marie Forleo.
First, you have to recognize who your dream person is and make sure that you really want to work with them. Really recognize who you want to work with and why. This takes a bit of research.
For Kelsey, Marie Forleo was at the top of her list. Marie was very influential in the direction of Kelsey’s business. When you find that person or company you want to work with, start engaging with them. Kelsey began to devour all of her content. She went to any place that was possibly connected to her. If Marie’s friends were speaking somewhere, Kelsey would go. She would follow and consume all that they were doing. As she continued to do that, she began to share their work. Kelsey shared the content that she thought was valuable and also connected to who she was. Kelsey wanted to be involved in what Marie did and support her from a distance.
Then, Kelsey began to tell people about Marie. One of those people was a friend from college who was now an editor at a magazine. The magazine was doing a big piece on stronger women and highlighted a lot of celebrities. Kelsey’s friend asked her for advice, and Kelsey recommended Marie Forleo. Kelsey’s friend reached out to Marie and interviewed her and told Kelsey if she wanted to grab a coffee with them she could. Kelsey stopped by and had a brief conversion with her and then left.
Kelsey followed up with Marie about seventeen times and continued to stay in touch and offer valuable information. Two years after that coffee, Marie reached out to Kelsey and asked if she was interested in coming to help with her Bschoolers. From then, they chatted and became friends.
It took a long time for Kelsey to get her dream person into her group and personal, intimate life. She wasn’t pushing hardcore to do something with Marie from an external PR standpoint, she wanted Marie to be at her dinner table. That was her dream.
Start by consuming your dream person’s content. Consume everything they have and support it. They will eventually see you. If you are on their email list, reply back to their emails.
No could mean “not right now”. It could also mean that it’s not an exact fit yet or that it doesn’t 100% align yet. When you show up at the front door and it’s not open, show up at the back door with a plate of muffins. If you find out they are gluten-free, show up at the window with gluten-free cookies. If you find out they don’t like cookies, show up at the other window with something else. The more you do it, the more you recognize that you are going to bring the right value at the right time. Continuously be empathetic to what could be helpful to them.
If you are pitching yourself to different articles or magazines. You may get thirty nos in a day. No one likes to get the “nos”. Recognize that anytime someone says no or doesn’t respond, it doesn’t mean that you are an idiot, it means that no, it is not right yet. Then you can tweak your pitch to make it more relevant to what they need.
Self doubt and fear usually come when operating from a reactive state. Often we are reacting to receiving “nos”, how other people show up for you in a conversation, or what is going on in the outside world. This is when we can get tripped up. We can’t control how other people are going to react or when another publication is going to say no to a pitch. Often it has nothing to do with you, and everything to do with them, their beliefs, and where they are at in their life. Recognize when you are operating from a reactive state versus a very conscious, intentional, and proactive state. When we come to the table proactively and have a belief or intention of how we want to show up in the world, a meeting, in a pitch, or email we can show up and not be concerned with how others respond to us.
When we operate from a very intentional and conscious place, we can stop being so reactive to everything around us and stop operating out of fear and self doubt.
Prepare for the no. Decide how you want to show up in the world when someone tells you no or rejects you. If you are prepared for the nos and rejection, you can practice taking that on without internalizing it.
So many people right now are having to start over. There are so many new beginnings.
When it comes to coaching, the way that you will be measured is the kind of results you can get people. Results can be emotional, financial, or tangible.
The results you can get someone, the way you can make them feel, and the benefit that you can have in their life shows you that you are a good coach. The only way to find this out is to coach. You have to allow yourself to be a beginner. Allow yourself to get your first coaching client and allow yourself to be good. You may not be an expert and the best until client 50. Give yourself the space in the beginning to learn. Do whatever you have to do to make this comfortable. You may need to offer a few coaching sessions free to prove to yourself that you are good enough. Give yourself the space to be a beginner, to dabble and test, and to figure out what you’re good at.
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WASSUP FRIENDS. We’re Evie + Lindsey, co-founders of this wild partayyy called The Heart University. Our goal is to empower entrepreneurs to kick freaking BUTT in their businesses, dive down into the heart of their why and how, and serve you with all possible tools you’ll need to up-level your business game and CRUSH those goals of yours.
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