I’ve always been a very driven person and I’ve always had a positive outlook on life. My one obsession has always been the human mind. Perception, achievement, paradigm shifts, it all fascinated me and I wouldn’t be lying if I told you it was always on my mind. It still is.
I finished school and did a 3 year military tour which gave me many gifts in terms of character traits but also delayed my social and professional progress in life. I started a university degree in business at the age of 25 where most my friends had started theirs at 18 or 19. I had a massive advantage on my side though, maturity, and with that maturity came military discipline and what I would later learn, strong leadership.
In my 2nd year of university, my parents got divorced. With my dad being in a wheelchair due to a crippling stroke a few years earlier, I got into business (a restaurant). I thought that with discipline and focus, I could do my part in the running of the restaurant and carry on with my full time degree at the same time. I was wrong.
First lesson in business: A start-up business is like a new born baby. It requires constant and consistent attention.
I made a choice to move my academic portfolio to an open university, that way I could resume studying when I wanted to and jumped head first into the business. It was a grueling and very demanding experience. We learned more than we earned. I learned about stock levels, how not to manage staff (leadership), cash-flow and (bad) partners.
Second lesson in business: Choose your partners very carefully and make sure you keep excellent bookkeeping records. No records, no business.
It was there that my partner at the time gave me a book to read. It was Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki. I noticed that Kiyosaki continually made a reference to a success or abundant state of mind. It really amazed me how little I knew about the bare basics of creating wealth so I decided to read more. Initially it was only books on business and financial success but I noticed again that all these authors kept on making a similar reference to success being a state of mind. So I started reading books on the mind. I read over 50 and most of them I read 3 or 4 times. I really understood the subject of prosperity and abundance on an intellectual level. Only intellectual though.
My next business was a manufacturing concern. I supplied interior ceramic décor to furniture chain stores and other retailers. I outsourced the actual manufacturing to keep my costs down and it worked until the manufacturer grew and my pieces weren’t getting any kiln space. One of the toughest decisions you’ll ever make in your life in business or relationships is whether to try harder or walk away. I closed the doors after 2 years.
Third lesson in business: If you’re not marketing yourself, you will not grow.
In that time (2007), I was able to further my interest in the mind and completed an NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) certification. I loved it and I excelled at it. I was also able to apply my leadership and treat my staff like family and not like soldiers. Armies don’t grow. Businesses and families do.
Almost immediately, I was offered a position of fleet maintenance manager at an earthworks company with a fleet of over 70 trucks, machines and other vehicles. I accepted the position and took my staff with me. The next two years were very similar to the military. I slept no more than 5 or 6 hours a night. I was always on standby. The pace was high and the people were stressed. Stress will cause people to be very difficult and often irresponsible and defensive.
It became increasingly evident to me that leadership was the key to getting anything done over time. I had no experience in repairing vehicle and I trusted heavily on the mechanics and other artisans under my division, it was only because of adhering to solid principles in leadership that I was able to adapt in what felt like a shark tank.
It was during this time (2009) I got exposed to emotional process work. Emotional process work is a series of questions that a facilitator asks a participant to get to resolutions and realizations that are often unconscious. Skilled facilitators of EPW have a very firm understanding of the primal functions of the human mind. I took to this very quickly as I was seeing in practice how the laws of the mind that I learned in NLP played themselves out. I was blown away and hooked. I became a very skilled facilitator and yearned for a way that I could do more of it.
Eventually, the fleet got sold and I was retrenched along with everyone else in my division.
I arrogantly thought that I could enjoy unemployment / freedom for as long as I wanted to. I was wrong. In a few months I was penniless and quite desperate.
I found a job at a facility that offered dual key, safety deposit boxes for rent (like the banks do). It was a new business and there were visions of being part of an expansion team in different cities. It didn’t exactly go like that. I started off in sales, cold calling people to offer them boxes. I learned very quickly that just like car insurance, a person will only get a safety deposit box if they need it and not a day before.
It was all downhill from there.
Management decided that the place needed a new security interface. They wanted to give the place a professional security look for their clients with guys in suits and earpieces.
So both the (former) head of security and yours truly became security guards. To make matters worse, we had to monitor the outside gate. We had a remote control for the gate and we would push the button to open the gate when there was a car or someone wanting to walk in or out and we’d push the same button to close it.
I couldn’t believe what had become of my life. I looked back at my illustrious entrepreneurial background, my roles in leadership and management, my ability to motivate staff and get the job done while forming relationships, my prodigy-like ability to help people shift mental states and find inner peace and I looked at my life, opening and closing a gate, asking people if they were carrying a fire arm… I began to sink into an anxious depression.
And so began my journey to the bottom of my barrel.
I’d wake up every day with my stomach pitted in anxiety begging something outside of myself to make it stop. It didn’t stop. It got worse. I found the work I was doing humiliating and embarrassing. If that wasn’t bad enough, the bosses were good people essentially but terrible leaders. There was no follow through on any decision in policy that was ever taken, no consistency, no company values, no comradery. It felt to me like a prison (and it looked like a prison due to the nature of the business).
Through all of this, I kept looking around what had become my reality and kept on asking myself what would turn out to be one of the most important questions a person could ever ask themselves. I get my clients to ask that same question today: how did I create this?
I knew without a shadow of a doubt from all the books I had read and from what was rapidly becoming common knowledge thanks to the movie “The Secret” that we create our reality by means of our thoughts. I decided that I was going to dedicate every available moment I had at my hell hole of a job to learning about universal principles and how the mind manifests reality so that I could manifest a different one. So that’s exactly what I did.
In that year, I learned every practical thing that I could find on the internet about the mind and how it manifests reality, about universal laws that govern everything on this earth in the outside world and the inner world of the mind. I quickly became an expert in energy work release techniques like EFT tapping and cognitive methods of letting go like Sedona Method as well as: theta meditation, subliminal messaging, correctly formulated written affirmation, creative visualization. I learned everything I could and became proficient at all of them. All the while, continuing with EPW (emotional process work) and integrative coaching.
I was consistent. Day in and day out I would do the techniques which is what most people don’t do and that’s why they give up on intentionally manifesting a specific reality. Consistency is key. But nothing was changing. It got to a point where I just could do anything anymore. I just stopped. I stopped caring. I stopped trying. Put differently I stopped DOing.
Looking back, this was a vital point in my journey to the bottom of my barrel. I had to stop trying to make things happen (DOing) and it was time to let things happen (BEing).
I still wanted to meditate but I wanted silence. Nothing guided. No voices. I found a meditation teacher and we started meditating stillness, quietening the mind by not engaging in thought. It took a few times to get the silence and the stillness but it came and something started to shift.
When you plant a seed in the earth, you have to make sure that all the necessary elements for it’s growth are present: fertile earth, sun and water. But once all the elements are in place, you can’t do much more other than let it be. By the laws of nature, it will grow.
One day, I woke up with my anxiety like I had done many times before that and I begged to something outside of me to take me out of this hell hole. On this day however, that thing that I thought was outside of me turned out to be inside of me and it said “take yourself out”, so I did.
You see, the journey to the bottom of the barrel is a very special journey, because at the bottom of the barrel there is a gift, a very special gift. The gift is a decision. A decision so strong, so resolute and so unbreakable about how you’re going to live the rest of your life, that it changes everything. Forever.
I swore to myself that for the rest of my life I would only do work that was my passion: coaching and liberating human potential.
I started following my passion building a coaching practice.
Today I am a recognized expert in my field. I have created my own niche of coaching beyond the coaching genres of life, performance, executive and business into what I call Breakthrough Coaching.
I am essentially an expert on manifestation and I apply this skill in Breakthrough Coaching. The different genres (life, performance, executive and business) serve more as a context than a style. Breakthrough Coaching is about human blockages and human blockages can only come in 3 areas: money/performance, relationships and health.
All my intentions and affirmations have come true and today I consistently help people do the same.