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  • Amina Aitsi-Selmi

How to turn your dreams into reality: entelechy [Wise Wednesdays]

We had a wonderful co-creative intensive at Expand Your Impact and got square into how to close the gap between what you want and what you have.


It’s the core of coaching and creation. One of the earliest Wise Wednesdays (WW) back in 2016 explored the concept of Entelechy (turning ideas into reality). The mystery of how potential is turned into actuality goes back to Aristotle and WW explored how it’s relevant to high achievers, why you need a beginner’s mind and the balance between yin and yang in realising a goal - whether it’s changing career, setting up your own business or making your bigger impact. You can read it here.




Below I want to share 5 basic pillars of coaching, so you can self-coach. Use them as a checklist to see where you might be missing something that’s stopping you from moving forward.


If you were to have an exploratory coaching session with me, this is often what we would cover (depending on what you need).


[Read on or watch the video]


1)    [VISION] What’s the most inspiring and meaningful vision that lives in you? Draw this out, not intellectually but by becoming very present and quieting the mental noise. Let yourself be surprised. For me, it just came one day as ‘liberating others as I liberate myself’, specifically through transformational coaching and writing, and specifically through an independent business vehicle. My superpower is Presence (my kryptonite is shame). My top value is freedom. My top need is connection.


2)    [STRATEGY] What’s the simplest strategy you can design around your vision? The world is noisy and we’re spoiled for options and distractions. For example, I built my practice through this simple approach from Rich Litvin, my coach and mentor at the time: Connect, Invite, Create, Propose. To this day, I go back to it if I start getting confused with complicated marketing tactics and business models. What’s your simple repeatable method to implement your vision?


3)    [MINDSET] At some point you realise it’s time to move from the ‘what/how’ type of question to the ‘why/who?’ type of question. Instead of asking ‘what do I want and how do I get it?’ (vision and strategy) you find that your obstacle becomes you (or rather your mindset of old, conditioned beliefs and narratives). So you have to start asking: ‘why do I want this and who do I need to be for it to happen?’


In The Success Trap book, I explain how most high-achieving professionals benefit from shifting from an Employee-Expert mindset to an Entrepreneur-Leader mindset. Essentially, this is a simple (but profound) rewiring of your relationship to uncertainty and not knowing (but also money and status).


In practice, it means you’re more comfortable with getting messy and experimenting and failing and not knowing whether you’ll succeed, and not worrying that you’ll disappoint your parents or look ridiculous to your high-flying colleagues or your cousin Jasmin. In the book I summarise the traits as DELTA (because Delta is for Dream!): Dream (your vision); Embrace uncertainty; Learn continuously; Test and pivot; Appreciate yourself and the journey.


4)    [ENERGY] Without energy, change cannot happen. If you’re burned out, you need rest, rest IS the change you need before you try to take action in a new direction. A caterpillar literally has to dissolve itself to have enough energy to become a butterfly. Procrastination is an industrial myth. If you’re tired, you need to rest, re-energise and re-inspire. Then start tuning into what energises you and letting go of what drains you until you’re back in momentum on a new path guided by your vision. (Make sure you have enough boundaries and anchors to not get pulled back into old patterns).


5)    [SKILLS] In my career, I’ve learned that you can’t do (conventional) medicine without medical skills. You can’t run a business without business skills. You can do public health and policy by winging it though (just joking). For example, it amazes me when people say ‘How do you find clients?’ as though they’re all hiding somewhere.


I guess I had to learn how to put myself out there, explain what I do, give examples of how it works, have risky conversations, face rejection and ridicule (both a skill and a mindset…), get square with the bank and the tax people and explain how to pay me and then manage the money and my energy, plus many other skills. And I had to learn that from experienced others while trusting my intuition.


Whatever you want to do, you’ll have innate gifts and acquired skills from your previous work, and there’ll be new skills you can learn. It might be writing, speaking, coaching, consulting, knitting, negotiating, marketing, ‘selling’ (which means knowing how to truly give, ask and receive). Pretty much everything can be broken down into skills. Many of them you already have and just need refinement and translation. But tune into your vision first.


Which of these 5 pillars of coaching do you think you need to focus on to boost your momentum for change? What do you need to let go of? Who do you need to remember that you are?


Of course, if you’re not getting anywhere then it may be time for you to work with a coach. When I’m asked how I did X or Y, I say that I learned from the best I could find and got great coaches to support and challenge me. I invest significant amounts of time and money in my personal and business coaching and education - on an ongoing basis. The idea of the lone heroic high achiever who can figure it all out alone with her intellect is all but a distant myth these days.


Have a great week,



P.S. When you’re ready, here are 3 ways you can significantly accelerate your career transition or leadership development while freeing up more time and bringing more of presence to your life:

1. Join the waitlist for my Small Mastermind: The Sanctuary. This is for high-achieving professionals and leaders who want to move away from being an expert or consultant to being a transformational force in the world whether in a current leadership role or a new venture, with their energy and wellbeing at the centre.

2. Apply to become one of my private 1-1 clients. I have 3 spots opening soon. This is for you if you want highly personalised support and meaningful career transformation that will bring more peace, fulfilment and values-aligned success.

3. Schedule a single "Pick my Brain" revelation session. Perhaps all you need is a single session with me to gain clarity on what you want and what's really in the way, and gain confidence to take your next, right steps. This is not deep coaching but more of a brainstorming to support your momentum.

Click HERE to schedule an exploratory call to talk about what's best for you.

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