In today’s Her Business Story here at A League of Shayna Mahoney, the female entrepreneur behind Shayna Mahoney-Coaching, founded in 2010.
Shayna tell us more about your business
As a holistic life coach, I give women hope to embrace their anxiety and find peace and purpose within. I offer private coaching, retreats, Reiki, articles, as well as all-natural products to ease anxiety. Most of my coaching is done over the phone with women all over the country and I offer a few individual and group programs in-person on Cape Cod.
Is Shayna Mahoney-Coaching your first business?
No! As a teenager, I started selling Shaklee supplements because their products helped my own mood, energy and immune system. It was a good learning experience because I had to practice networking, selling, self-care and keep myself organized.
Now my husband, John, and I also own Emerald City, a kitchen and bath remodeling company in Plymouth, MA. We have a showroom with an amazing team we have grown over the past few years.
I have personal experience dealing with anxiety from a very young age, which worsened as I became a teenager and young adult. I incorporate a variety of techniques into my coaching work such as nutrition, mindfulness, hands-on healing, neuro-linguistic programming, psychology, and of course, a sense of humor!
What made you decide to become a female entrepreneur?
My dad has always been an entrepreneur. I think my parents realized early on that I would also be an entrepreneur based on things I would say or do. I would help my dad with his businesses and as a teenager I learned about bookkeeping, sales, marketing and management. I loved the idea of being my own boss and realizing there were no limits. I have always been a big dreamer (my only tattoo says dream!), and didn’t want to feel held back working for someone else. I love the idea of creating my life and doing what brings me joy.
How long did it take for you to put your idea into action?
During my first semester of college, my dad became disabled from taking the prescription drug, Crestor, to lower his cholesterol. At this point, I was working and taking classes full-time, taking the medication Prozac for my anxiety, and I was overweight and exhausted. It was a really scary time in my family and I was curious how we could have prevented that situation.
I began researching prescription drug side effects and realized how many people were affected. I also learned that my dad could have tried to lower his cholesterol with diet and exercise, but didn’t have the understanding and knowledge to do so. He trusted his doctors and took pills instead of doing much else.
This sparked my interest in nutrition and health. I started selling supplements and then became a holistic health coach. I changed my own eating habits and realized how my health impacted my mood and energy. From that point, everything changed and I wanted to help other women realize they didn’t have to be held back from their anxiety and they could also reach for their dreams.
I kept taking courses and expanding my knowledge on wellness, nutrition, mindfulness, habit-change work, and I haven’t stopped in eight years! It honestly didn’t take me long to get my business started because I was so excited and motivated to help others with what I was learning.
What has been your scariest moment as an entrepreneur?
I thought my business would grow with my socially anxious self hiding behind a computer, but I soon realized that wasn’t going to work. I had to constantly put myself out there with a fear of rejection or being misunderstood. I began networking and having to speak in public, which I never imagined myself doing. In 2013, I stood in front of 300 other coaches in NYC and shared a bit about growing my coaching business. My legs were shaking, but I did it!
What has been your proudest moment?
I don’t spend enough time acknowledging how far I have come with my own anxiety and health while growing my businesses.
There have been quite a few accomplishments over the years, but one of my proudest moments was when I led my first Hope & Peace Retreat on Cape Cod in 2015. This retreat was for a group of women 18-30 years old and we spent the weekend focusing on deep healing work, mindfulness, yoga, healthy eating, creativity, expression and so much more. I am proud that I have been able to lead this special experience for the past three years.
What is the biggest lesson you have learned from founding your own company?
I am constantly learning as a business owner. I think the biggest lesson is knowing when to ask for help, especially for things I’m not good at. I am a type-A personality who likes to implement ideas quickly. For awhile, I tried to do so much myself and it became overwhelming because there are so many parts and pieces to being an entrepreneur. Being able to hire and delegate has been very helpful, especially so I can still maintain a personal life.
What does success mean to you?
Success means doing work that ignites passion and joy while having incredible self-care.
Has a mistake ever led you to success?
I had to quickly learn that running a business requires having boundaries in place, especially for time and money. People can take advantage if you give too much, so I realized it’s important to have contracts, business hours and other boundaries so I am not wasting too much time and energy.
Which women inspire you?
My sister inspires me with her openness and soul.
My mom inspires me with her kind heart.
My grandmothers have inspired me with their wisdom and dedication to family and hard-work.
I have had incredible coaches and mentors along the way who have inspired me with some tough love and their own experiences.
And which men?
My dad has inspired me with his big dreams and entrepreneur soul.
My husband is the hardest worker I know who never complains.
What one thing do you wish someone had told you when you first started out?
There will be times when you want to give up, but that’s probably the point of a breakthrough so you need to keep on going…
What’s the best piece of business advice someone has ever given you?
I think the coaching world has taught me how important it is to always have support and mentors. I feel anyone who is working on a goal in business, health, life, etc. should have a coach or at least someone to give them encouragement and accountability. It makes the hard-work easier because it feels less lonely and draining.