From coaching strong professionals to joyful exercise, Sarah-Nell Walsh shares her biggest lessons of 2021 as we re-focus this January.
Sarah-Nell Walsh, the founder of the coaching collective Wayfinders, LLC, shares her biggest lessons in 2021: to focus on the doors that are open and on what is possible. In her professional life, she is devoting her time to helping ambitious professionals grow revenue, gain influence, and make their desired impact. When she isn’t engaging in deep conversation, you can find her eating delicious dinners with her husband and family or just moving and keeping her body healthy.
Location: Atlanta, GA
Age: 42 years
What I do: Founder and Professional Certified Coach of Wayfinders, LLC
Briefly describe who you are, what brings you the most joy in life? How do you unwind and have fun?
I am Sarah-Nell Walsh, an executive coach and Founder of Wayfinders, LLC. I derive a lot of satisfaction from witnessing people becoming exactly who they are meant to be.
When I’m not engaged in deep conversations, I have fun by moving my body – walking, skiing, doing pilates, biking, dancing – joyfully. I unwind with a hot bath, a good book, and a bold red wine.
What is the key problem your business or company solves, who does it solve it for and how does it solve it?
The Wayfinders Coaching Collective helps ambitious professionals and entrepreneurs grow their businesses, hone their leadership skills, and make their desired impact through executive coaching, team coaching, and speaking engagements. Wayfinders four pillars are business growth, career transition, executive leadership, and work-life blend.
Reflecting on 2021, what have been your biggest lessons over the past 12 months?
Like a meditation, I keep coming back to the question, “What do I control here?”
In 2021, it was possible for me to exercise outside. So, I did. I started exercising at the beginning of the year by walking 3-5 days a week. By the end of the year, I had completed my first triathlon!
Post pandemic many people are changing how they approach life and work. Taking away all of the normal parameters we put around things (the hours we work, expectations of others, current clients needs, family needs) what would your “ideal” week look like, include all of your key priorities, such as; health, wellbeing, family, friends, love, hobbies, personal interests, play, joy as well as work? Be specific.
In my ideal week, I see 4 clients for 60-90 minutes 3 days a week. This gives me more space to develop my skills as a coach through reading and coach supervision and to develop thought leadership by writing. I joyfully move my body 5 days a week – doing pilates, lifting weights, riding my bike, running, swimming, skiing, roller skating – and don’t think of it as exercise. My husband and I cook delicious and nutritious meals 4 nights a week and try out the city’s best restaurants 3 nights a week. Our family eats dinner together 5 nights a week, plays games, and generally enjoys each other’s company.
Where are you right now in your life and career, what is your hope for your next chapter?
Right now, I am the Founder of a coaching collective with 6 coaches. My hope for my next chapter is to have all six coaches full-plated with coaching clients that they adore, to keep developing Wayfinders team coaching practice, to hire full-time operational support, and to slowly transition into a CEO role.
What are your top three goals for 2022?
My intention for 2022 is to sustain and strengthen both my business and myself.
Every decision I make this year will be filtered through the question, “Does this make me or Wayfinders stronger?”
What has been holding you back and where do you most need help in reaching your goals this year?
I need more back office support so I can focus on attracting and serving our clients.
When you feel stuck, how or where do you typically find the help and support you need?
When I feel stuck, I keep moving forward. I focus on what I can do. If I don’t have time to take a 15 mile bike ride, I take a 30 minute walk.
What I can do is better than what I don’t do.
From your own experience, what process or tips can you share with other Members around creating a career vision for yourself and setting annual goals?
I think setting a yearly intention is more effective than setting rigid goals. The fact is that we can’t predict how this year is going to play out.
For example, last year my intention was “Health First.” When I set that intention, my goals involved exercising regularly, going to the doctor, and eating healthy. But, when a friend asked me if I wanted to do a sprint triathlon, it aligned with my intention of putting my health first, so I said yes and jumped into training with both feet.
If you’d have asked me in January of 2020 if I planned to do a triathlon, I would have laughed in your face.
I only owned an electric bike and hadn’t ridden that bike more than 5 miles. But, I was able to train for and complete a triathlon because I’d been making decisions that put my health first all year – running, swimming, stretching, weight lifting, eating well – and was in a position to say yes.
What tools or resources do you use to help you streamline and automate your business and processes?
My favorite tool is the BestSelf Journal. It’s a really powerful self-coaching tool.
Give/Get: What value do you bring to The Lola community and are there any special offers you’d like to make Members aware of right now? Is there anything else you need support with?
On a practical level, I go to the Lola 2-3 times a week and am physically present in the space. I empty the coffee maker and make coffee as soon as I arrive!
Wayfinders is a great resource for entrepreneurs who want to scale their business or corporate leaders who want to level-up.
My biggest need is help with authentic social media marketing and copywriting, but I’m scared to hand it over because it drives a lot of business.
Member testimonial. In around 50 words or less could you share the biggest value The Lola has added to your life and career since joining? How has The Lola community and it’s Members helped you find success?
Before the pandemic, Lola felt like home. I loved the excitement of walking into the space and seeing who was at work that day. It is magical to walk into a space brimming with successful women all working separately. Together. After a few casual interactions, Kristin Rajagopal invited me to join a networking group in February of 2020. This group was a lifeline during the pandemic and has really contributed to my success.