Hi! I am Manisha, a Thought Partner, a Coach, a Writer and a Conversationalist. My passion and purpose lie in helping those who are on a path of pursuing their highest potential in a way that feels fun and authentic. I love working in both the dimensions – Inner (Mindset and Beliefs) and Outer (the way one chooses to present oneself – their Personal Style and Expression). My coaching practice is based on the foundation of gentle yet deep conversations. I love writing about various topics related to the mind as well as the expression of what goes on in the mind (some of which is presented on my blog.)
Transformation has always fascinated me. But I think it is not just me, don’t we all love witnessing transformation. We love how a caterpillar turns into a butterfly because the transformation inspires us and helps us believe that we too are capable of the same.
When I was younger, if I knew a way I could learn how to bring about transformation in people, I would have done just that. However, life has its own way of preparing us for what we are meant to do. It is interesting how certain events and phases in our life shape our core values and help us discover our true purpose and passion.
In my case, there are three distinct phases or chapters of my life which have helped me discover the true essence of what I stand for.
Phase 1 Childhood – My father was my first icon – in every way, his Inner world as well as his Outer world. I cannot think of a day when he wasn’t impeccably dressed or groomed. His clothes, his fragrances, the way he walked, the way he spoke – everything was stylish, unique, authentic and reflected his inner self. When I was in kindergarten, I would wait for him to come and pick me up after school because he was so well turned out – I was proud to show him off.
As I was growing up, I got to know about his accomplishments and his intellect. Coming from rural background, born in 1940s his desire to give himself the best education met with several challenges. However, he was unstoppable. His commitment, passion, hard work and exceptional intellect helped him win scholarships and he eventually studied at IIT and completed his PhD in Experimental Nuclear Physics. By the late1970s, he had travelled extensively and was doing very well for himself – helping not only his own family but few others complete their education.
My father’s commitment, passion and hard work inspired me to internalise these strong values around sincere effort and relentless pursuit of ones’ dreams. His sense of style fascinated me, influenced me and eventually led me to discover my passion for Personal Style. The other side of the story was that having a Nuclear Physicist at home made my young mind chase academic excellence feverishly without stopping and thinking about what my real passion was. This later prompted me to do some serious soul searching to discover my true gifts.
Phase 2 My Career – I graduated as an engineer from one of India’s oldest college for Chemical Engineering, Lakshminarayan Institute Of Technology. I feel fortunate to have gotten a chance to study at this wonderful institute. However, this was a phase where I began to realise that my effort in the academic space was fuelled by anxiety to prove myself rather than pure passion. This realisation later helped me get onto the path of my own personal growth so that I could operate from a space of passion and purpose. I didn’t pursue Chemical Engineering as a career and gravitated towards Information Technology. I was fortunate to work with some great companies like Dell, IBM and Unisys. The most satisfying phases of my 13 year long career in IT were those where I led teams of varying sizes ranging from about 15 to over 700. I enjoyed helping my teams excel and it gave me great joy to see my team members grow.
A turning point in my career was a role where I was heading a team of coaches and underwent a program to become a certified coach myself. The techniques I learnt as a coach helped me bring about positive transformation within myself as well as my team. It helped me drive forward action to generate measurable outcomes and meet organisational goals. The magic of coaching continued to work as I grew up the ladder.
As a people manager and as a coach, I realised that while talent and skills are key, there is a very important factor which is critical for success -, that is how one manages their Inner Game (the mind) and the Outer Game (how ones shows up – ones’ external expression of who one is through Personal Style). Creating a healthy relationship with oneself and expressing oneself with ease and confidence are important aspects that impact success and fulfilment. I was able to see this phenomena in action and it created in me a desire to understand the psychological aspects of Personal Style and Image Management and its role in putting one on the path of success. This interest led me to formally study Image Consulting and include the concepts in my own coaching practice. The answer to what made certain people more successful and admired than others seemed to lie in how they expressed themselves – inside out. This awareness of how important it is to manage both dimensions (Inner and Outer) and a deep desire to share this learning with as many people as I could was what I took away from this phase.
Phase 3 Motherhood – Life unfolded and a new phase began in my life as I stepped into motherhood. This new phase brought with it new beginnings in the most unexpected way. It began with me quitting my full time job and taking a break. During the days that followed, I spent time connecting with myself.
I decided to squeeze out time to do things that I loved but didn’t have time to pursue during my working life. I also invested significant amount of time in reading about the psychology behind self-image and the drive for success. What interested me the most was understanding why some people have more self-belief than the others and how magic happens when one operates from a space of inner harmony.
As I sit back and reflect on each of the phases of my life, I feel immensely grateful for the way my journey has prepared me to be of value in helping people enjoy the pursuit of their potential in a way that is enjoyable and enriching!