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Episode 78: Helping Leaders Crush Their Goals with Kathy Mela

by Deb Schell
June 26th 2022

In this interview on the Community Strategy Podc... More

Hi and welcome back to Community Strategy podcast. I am so excited for this interview with Kathy, I'm gonna give you some scope real quick. Here's what we talked about. If you are a leader and you are overwhelmed or stressed, you should listen to this episode. We talked about how to empower your managers if you're overseeing managers, how to empower them by using their skills and strengths. We talked about the health care system, how there's challenges within the health care system and Kathy really is inspired in wanting to empower leaders, female leaders who are in that, that healthcare industry as well as entrepreneurs and other leaders. So those are the people that she really helps. And we talked a lot about how to help yourself by aligning your mission and values and beliefs with your company big purpose and when you're messaging that out to your audience to your ideal members or talking with people or you're putting that on your landing page, just really resonating with what you're offering and what you're not offering to get really clear on your offer so that you can find some calm in that process because if you eliminate people that are just not the right fit from the beginning and then you can really focus on the core people who are the right fit for your offer for your community.

So check it out. Hi and welcome back to the community strategy podcast. My name is Deb, I'm excited today to introduce to you Cathy Melas. She helps leaders build, launch and grow and learn to crush their goals and create the results they desire by aiming for excellence instead of striving for perfection, she's a coach, speaker, author and her mission is to bring awareness to the power of our thoughts, words and actions by helping clients ignite their internal fire, break through their bogus stories and build momentum to create a more powerful, purposeful, brilliant experience. Welcome Kathy to the community strategy podcast. Thank you, thank you Deb, thank you for having me here. I'm excited to be here today and excited to speak to your community and share my thoughts and words of wisdom and possibly even learn something, you know, I always, I feel like I always learn and grow whether I'm providing a service or not, so I'm excited for both of those things today.

Yeah, it's great, we always have good conversations on the community strategy podcast and I'm sure that today will not be one, you listeners will once in this, so tell us a little bit about your story um you know, what brought you to leading other leaders and helping helping them in their challenges. I'll give a little back story. Um I have a 45 year career in healthcare as a nurse and nurse practitioner and a nurse in the neonatal intensive care unit where we where I breathe life into newborns and premature babies and so that, you know, initially that's a leadership role in and of itself and I feel like I've always been a leader, you know, I've always been someone who stepped into leadership roles and what I know is that, you know, when I as I stepped into leadership roles, there was some innate abilities in me and and also I didn't, I didn't have any schooling in leadership, you know, we're not always taught that and what I found, especially in healthcare and I think in many industries is that leaders and whether you're an entrepreneur, you know, have a job like it's when you step into that world of leadership, oftentimes you have an idea of what that looks like and yet we may not have the skills, the skills that really help us level that leadership up and so that's what I like to bring to the table, I have had, you know, as I said, years of leadership, breathing life into babies and now I get to breathe life into human beings, especially women leaders, who are in a way that helps them really step into their passion and their power and their vision.

So I say that I breathe life into babies through PPV it's called called positive pressure ventilation and now I also breathe life into lead into women leaders through another type of PBB which is that passion, that power and that vision that's in alignment with your true purpose in life, so that's a little bit about my background and yeah, I'll leave it at that, I'll see if you have any questions about that, it's it's a super interesting and I love that you you know there are so many things you don't learn in your career that are life lessons that you experience and that you bring to the table and so I think you shared a couple of those life lessons that are transferable from career to career to changing for what you're doing in health care to know helping leaders and it's really inspirational to see you pivoting in that way of of helping a different audience of people. But what what brought you to identifying that there was a need for that audience of leaders? Well, so I will share my philosophy with you, I have a general philosophy like people don't always like to hear it as leaders but my philosophy is that ship runs downhill and what does that mean?

That means that a lot of times what leaders do is when there's a problem in their team and their industry, you know, in in there, you know, again I'll just use the word team that they look to the team members, like what's wrong with them, what's going on, what are they not doing right? You know, and sort of that? And so what I what I came to know is that as a leader, I have a responsibility, I have a responsibility for how I show up and how I lead my team and if there's an issue with my team, it starts with me, it starts at the top, what kind of leadership skills are you showing, What kind of leadership are you empowering your team with? So I see leadership as a little bit different than managing and you know, if you have a title, the manager, I'm not saying anything negative about you, what I know, you know in my in my career, a lot of times people would say, oh they're such a micromanager, those are people that try to manage people and were, and to me that's sort of trying to take their power away and control the situation and make it look how you want it to rather than empowering people empowering people to use their skills, their strengths to step into their greatness to be all that they've been created to be.

And so that's where I see learning to lead yourself, you get to learn how to do that for you first and then you can think about how you lead your team. So that that theory about leadership is really what brought me seeing how many leaders don't take responsibility, they get into a shaming and blaming situation. And I have not seen that to be effective or work and maybe someone else has had an experience where that was effective. I have not seen it effective in parenting in, in any kind of industry, as far as, you know, leading people when you empower people and give them the ability to make decisions, to think out of the box, to think their own thoughts and come up with the things that are going to work for them to get the job done, whatever that looks like, you know, it's a different, it just comes from a different place and I think you can even hear it and how I'm saying it, you know, like if somebody's trying to manage you and tell you what to do versus empower you to figure it out a little bit yourself and use your God given talents, that's you know, that's whole different place to come from.

So that's what's kind of led me is watching, watching leaders all through life and knowing the leaders that empowered me to step into my greatness and those that I felt we're trying to micromanage and control me and so I felt like I wanted, I want to bring a different style of leadership to the world, I believe it's possible, we see it in a lot of companies, we see a lot of companies going that way, I call it a win win where you're thinking not only you know, the win lose model that we've been used to and a lot of industries says that in order for me to win Deb is going to have to lose and that that's not the truth and that doesn't feel like a good place for me to live in and that's not the world I want to live in. So I'm all about making some change and shift in mindset and how we look at this so that we can create that win win? And sometimes it's a win win win? So for instance, in health care, often times it felt like that in order for the company that owned the, I'll just use the hospital for instance, and in order for the hospital administration to win and make them and make money and do what they needed to do and therefore their clients to win their patients, somebody was going to lose.

And that was oftentimes the employees, the and the people and the providers that are caring for the people. And so that doesn't feel right. Like that doesn't feel like how do you not take good care of your providers as well as your clients as well as make sure that that you're taking care of your business and that all those things are in place. So it again, it's it's it's shifting, it starts with the mindset. Um, and I, you know, I know I say that over and over again and I feel like I'm a broken record about it. And it does because you know, I I've shared with you that my I have a motto, Teal is my deal. And the first letter of Teal is t and that's thoughts become things and it all starts with our thoughts, what do you believe? Where where are your thoughts, what are you thinking about? Do you believe in possibilities? Or do you believe in in in limited? Do you believe that people have limited potential or do you believe that people have unlimited potential and that they can that if with the right encouragement and guidance that they can be empowered to really tap into their strength.

So that's a little bit about how I kind of got on this on this wavelength about leading, helping leaders learn to lead themselves so that they can lead themselves and their teams more powerfully more brilliantly and really like Yeah, there's so many good things I have to pull out of there um starting from the from the top, really comparing when a lot of clients that I work with our community hosts and they are leaders in an online community and they also act as a community manager and I see those as different roles. And so the host is the one who sets the vision and then the manager is the one who implements that vision. However I like the idea of really implementing a vision where you also allow that community manager to use their strengths and give insights and tips to the host when they are seeing things that might work or not work within an online community, for example, with engagement or content or relevance of events or times that they're going live streaming.

And so I think empowering the Community Manager allows you to give them a place to shine and really connect with the members in a deeper and meaningful way. So I really like that. And I think right, you're right in a lot of ways, the traditional way of leadership was that, you know, there's a right and a wrong way and then we explained somebody when things don't go the right way and you know, we put the responsibility on somebody else and sometimes I feel like you're right, it needs to be from the top down, um taking responsibility for things means that you don't blame it on your team member because at the end of the day, if you're a leader of Ceo and executive there, you hired them. So you've, you know, you're a part of the equation and Being authentic I think is in in this day where we're living in now in 2022 people want authenticity. They want to see that people aren't perfect. I think that there is this model online, you know, and as an entrepreneur or business owner that you just show, you know, what's really great, what's going really great.

We don't talk really about what's going not so great. And I think those are ways that are learning lessons and so if leaders are more willing to be vulnerable and share those learning lessons that they've experienced with their staff, if you're a corporate company, corporation or a company or with your thinking about like in a, in an online community role of bringing in the members and giving them the ability to give you feedback throughout and listening to their needs, because it has to be a win win win, which means it has to be a win for the team, a win for the leader and a win for the members or audience, right? It can't be one directional. A lot of business owners go with, you know, what are they going to do for me as far as like if you're an employee and an owner or a business executive, but it really should also be like, what am I doing for the employees? I feel like it's another thing that people miss, I don't know if that resonates with you at all. Yes, totally. So I see, I know you talked before about the host having a vision and so for me what I, you know, and most companies now today have, you know what they call mission statements and a vision statement and where they're going.

And I feel like community, I'm sure community podcast hosts have the same kind of thing, you know, like you want to have and you want to be clear about your direction because you know, we flounder if we're not clear about that and where it starts, where I like to start is making sure that, you know, you can call it mission or purpose, that that's in alignment with you, so when you're talking about a podcast host who's who's obviously knows where they're going. They're clear on their mission, they're clear on their vision for that mission, how they're going to implement that, making sure that that yes, their podcast manager and the members, like all of those people, it's important to to respect and honor that, they also have a mission in their life, whether it's a personal, I really believe that it's one mission, and then how do you implement that in your personal and professional life and making sure that you are aware of what their what their again, what they bring to the table, what is there mission? What do they want to bring to your vision and how can they align?

It's this whole piece about alignment and, you know, we can all look around the world and see whether it's in the online space or whether it's in the political space or whether it's in you know, business space, that many places, and many people are out of alignment with what they're doing, and it shows, I mean, you know, I'm just gonna say to the audience right now, like think about someone that, you know, that is doing something out there, making something happen that it looks to you, like they're out of alignment, we can all look around and see it. And so that's why I come back to that often, I have a four a process and the first thing is awareness and first of all, it's important to see, have the awareness of where you are out of alignment and then learn how to get back in alignment? That's a second, A because when, you know that, you know, we don't all stay in alignment all the time. Sometimes life happens and things happen in our personal and professional lives that get us off course, and so, having a tool or a strategy that gets you back on course, Oh yes, this is my mission, this is my vision is what I'm doing and saying and thinking right now in alignment with that, and are the people on my team in alignment with that?

You know, the truth is sometimes they're not, maybe they need to go find a team where they're in alignment and I don't mean that mean, you know, like, we often sometimes stay somewhere doing a job or or staying with with a vision that we have that suddenly no longer is in alignment with our true passion and our true mission and purpose in life. And so when you can keep coming back to those two things, what's your purpose or mission? What's your mission? And then what's a vision around that? That is a powerful place to be. That's where you, you know, you your I love your podcast, find finding calm here, that's where you find the calm, That's where you find a piece, that's where you find the joy, that's how you live in a place that yes, you can see some chaos around you and it doesn't have the same impact on you, that it used to because you're, you're an alignment, does that make sense? Yeah, yeah and I think I'm still learning this for myself as I grow my consulting business and working with the clients who I just had a call right before I got on the call with you, I had a call with a client and I actually was was like, it's a certificate, I was building a certification program for him on mighty Networks and I said The certification program was all around training these coaches who then are going to go out and do 1-1 coaching for for clients and I said, you know, I'm actually looking for a coach and I really resonate with your message and what turns out is that the clients that I attract are people that I really want in my life personally, that because I connect with their values and their messaging.

But the the other thing is is that now I'm seeing like people that aren't in alignment with me as I work with and get clients and grow my consulting business, I'm seeing like you know, I really need to be in alignment with that no matter what the dollar value is sometimes I feel like as an entrepreneur, there's ups and downs as as a consultant and I had some low, low money periods in the last few months where I just was saying yes to a lot of things and I'm trying to really go back to my values and say yes to the right things and I think that's where that awareness piece comes in as as well as just connecting it with values and it's going to work out much better when you align yourself with clients or customers, that also feel the same about specific values like well being and not feeling feeling calm versus not feeling feeling stressed, right? Yeah. And being aware that that sometimes we do have to go through those periods of time where we're learning what we don't want, so that we are more clear, you know, that's part of the clarity process.

It's you know, sometimes I think we think we have to arrive at this space where we're totally clear and it all works out all the time and that's not how it works on earth? It's not reality not, it's like sometimes in order to grow and stretch, it's important that we experience those and it's to me, it's just a mindset and a perspective of how you look at it, you can look at why is this stuff happening to me, Why am I going through this again? Or you can say what's here for me, why is this happening for me? What, what am I here to grow? What am I learned? How am I here? How is this going to help me grow and learn and step more into my greatness and step into what I am totally here on this earth to do and be and be in alignment. And so I know some of my clients don't always like when I say when they have a challenge and I go, I love that you have that challenge, I love you had that experience Deb and and these people are going, I think you're crazy. No, it's it's important that we have those experiences because on the other side of it, you get so much more clarity and you get really clear about what's in alignment.

And again, that brings you back to that feeling of calm and peace and now, you know, the difference. And so sometimes when something comes into your arena again, even if there's a little low period of money and it doesn't feel right, you're gonna say, oh yeah, I had that experience before and I went because I felt like I needed the money and yet that didn't feel right to me. Maybe I won't do it this time. You know, maybe sometimes we repeat things over and over again until we learn and that's okay too. You know, it's not making ourselves, I always say this and I don't make ourselves right, when I'm good and bad, we're such judging human beings, we judge everything, you know, oh, that's a blue blouse, I can't stand that, or that's a pink top and I love that and, you know, we judge everything and then we judge ourselves and we make ourselves wrong and bad and right and good for certain things and you know, letting go of that, that right, wrong, good or bad has been a powerful space for me and I know and I've watched other people begin to let go of it. That it doesn't always have to be in that in that box of right wrong, good or bad.

It just is and that's how we learn and grow and step into that. So I love that you had that experience. I appreciate that. And I well it was, you know, it's a challenging time. It's also lessons learned and better knowing myself, I, you know, I updated terms and conditions. I added professional guidelines on my terms and conditions and agreement contracts so that these are written and this is how I work with people and being really clear about what I do, my scope of work that just eliminates me from having frustration and stress over people asking me to do things that are out of scope of work of the contract. And you know, it's business basics, but sometimes we don't think about these little details and they do matter in the sense of that is something that if you give a little time to working out like what do I really I want to do for these clients and like let me get clear on what that that offer is going to be and what it's not going to be. And then you're very clear when you have calls or talking to potential prospects or something like you already say, oh, this isn't something I do.

If you know, if they're saying, oh I need marketing, you're like, I don't do marketing. So that's not what this is, not what this is. But yeah, it's it's an experience and it's one that I have, I think we all have and my mom recently had a conversation with me and we chatted about my childhood and I was asking her some questions about how I was raised and you know how other, you know, compared to other people and things. And one of the things that she told me was, we grew up believing that there was right wrong and responsibility, there wasn't compassion. And I think the biggest lesson that I'm learning in the last couple of years is that I really need compassion for others and compassion for myself because honestly I set the bar really high for myself and then I have a hard time reaching that bar. And I also have expectations for other people that might not necessarily be in the scope of where they're at and meeting them where they're at. I think those are some lessons I've learned. Those are great lessons and I've learned that too.

Like I always, you know, you said about the striving for excellence rather than perfection because I was like that too. I set the bar really high for myself and Oftentimes didn't meet it myself and yet still held held those expectations for others. And it when I stepped into leadership, I started learning that how I was showing up. Like I didn't really like it. I didn't like myself sometimes. Like I was a little bit of uh, you know, I'm not saying you don't have to be tough sometimes with people, but to have some compassion along with the toughness, that tough love pieces is finding that balance that works for you and works for the people that you're working with because sometimes it's okay to be tough with certain people. They can handle other people can't. So being aware of that and learning that lesson is really huge. I'm glad you brought that up because I, you know, I struggled with that for a long time and and got really clear that they're this And that's why I talk about in my teal the l is lead with love and it's love kindness and compassion and we can have that mix.

We can balance that those energies out. You know, we all have masculine feminine energies in it and our world has been a lot of masculine energy. And again, nothing wrong with masculine energy. We need that. It just has gotten off kilter. We need to bring some of that love and kindness in and some of that compassion in into the workspace as well as into our personal lives. Mm Yeah. Because we're not like Deb doesn't take off her consulting hat when she goes outside and she doesn't take off her personal hat when she's working with clients. Deb's step. So you get a package deal with me sometimes that's a good thing and sometimes not so much, but I feel like the more authentic we can be in in and and transfer those experiences both personal and professional. I think that's where the magic is and that you can really build relationships when you're willing to open up a little bit. You don't have to share your darkest secrets publicly obviously. But but just be a little bit more compassionate in in your professional communications and and conversations I think is helpful.

So I wanted to ask you, tell us a little bit about who you work with, how people could work with you and keeps anybody's listening and resonating with some of what you do. Yeah. I work you know, predominantly work with women. It's I have worked with men before. I predominantly work with women. I have a heart for women. I feel that there's again, I I think that's just where my heart spaces right now in this moment. And so I say women leaders specifically in health care, also entrepreneurs. I'm working with some entrepreneurs and women in business. Again to have really helped them learn to lead themselves. I recently partnered with a group of women called the mom link and I'm really focused on helping women learn to collaborate and network, you know, again, run a business and and behold people without sacrificing their well being. This is, you know, in health care, this is one of the things that I go back to time and time again and again, I don't, it's not just in healthcare, I just, my experiences in healthcare, I watch it in many industries where you know, I'm not saying men don't sacrifice their well being, but women are sort of taught that and expected to do that.

You know, you take care of the house, take care of the kids, you take care of all the things and what about you? And so we've become accustomed that that's the way we're supposed to. So the minute I hear these three words, I start to step back and take a look, the three words are, I should, I'm supposed to or I have to and it's important to notice our own internal language around those things. You know, the minute I start saying I should I go, okay, no, I don't just, I don't have to like I did that, I lived that life of shooting on myself that I should be the perfect mother, I should be the perfect parent, I should have perfect kids, I should have a perfect house and none of that ever existed and I should be the perfect employee and I should be the perfect practitioner and I should be the perfect this, I should be the perfect leader, like it's exhausting and what and what was happening was I was putting myself on the back burner because I was seeking something that wasn't even possible to attain, which is perfection. And so I think this is really an important piece for women.

You know, again, I say women and and for men who are, who are in that perfectionist mindset or you know, that was my pattern. So there's other patterns I've looked at, there's people pleasing, there's, you know, we could, I don't want to go deep into those patterns, but we all have patterns that run us. I just want to share a little bit about what I, what I like to do is is help people understand their minds and how their minds work a little bit. And first of all we have beliefs, we have beliefs and perceptions and ideas that that create that come that our thoughts come from our beliefs and perceptions and ideas and those things, most of the what we believe and how we perceive the world. We've learned at a very young age when we really didn't have the cognizant ability to decide what we wanted to believe in. And that happens by the time we're ate about half of what we believe. We adopted by the time we're four and then about 80% by the time we're eight, which is why a lot of us make decisions like eight year olds because we're in that mindset, we believe that and we weren't taught, we didn't learn that.

We can go back and examine those beliefs and change it, we can retrain our brain. So when I say this pattern of perfectionism, I can look back at my life and see it started at a very, at a very young age, I was kind of taught that I learned that and I've gotten to explore that and say, is that a real thing? And how do I interrupt that pattern? So the pattern, you know, we have a brain stem and in our brain stem is a is a section of neurons and it's called the reticulated activating system that, you know, I'm being very simple in terms here basically is in control. A lot of our subconscious, a lot of our beliefs and habits and really it's designed to keep us safe and comfortable and we need it at times, there's times we need some safety and we need some comfort in life. It's just not, it doesn't allow us to grow, it doesn't allow us to stretch, it doesn't allow us to challenge those beliefs. And so one of the ones I like to say is, you know, that there's a scare, a lot of scarcity mindset, what do you believe? Do you believe? What's possible in life and I didn't at a stage in my life and you get to challenge that belief and again, it's retraining our brains.

I I think I got a little off track, but it's just retraining your brain, it's possible to retrain our brains to believe in ourselves, to learn to lead ourselves to learn to lead ourselves with love and compassion and you can still be, you know, powerful and assertive and take care and run a business and so it's bringing all those pieces together and it starts with you learning to take care of yourself and learning to balance that in a way that honors you so that you have a lot to give so that you can serve your clients in a more powerful way. And the example I'd like to give is that I gave from an emptiness for a long time, I was very strong people outside, you know, people externally didn't know that this suffering inside was going on, that there wasn't taken care of Kathy that I gained £100 that I wasn't buying myself clothes, I was taking care of my kids, I wasn't doing anything for me. And now I've shifted that, it doesn't mean I'm selfish and don't take care of anybody else. It means I, the self care definition I like is that you are very mindful of your own needs while you're aware of the impact that that what you think say and do, aware of the impact that you have on others.

I feel that that understanding your brain and how your brain works and that you can retrain your brain, you can interrupt these patterns that are running you, we all have patterns that run us, some of those patterns are good if you get up every morning and brush your teeth, that's a good habit and pattern to have. If you have a pattern of eating ice cream every single night before you go to bed, that might be a pattern you want to evaluate and start learning ways to interrupt it. So some of them are things we do, and some of them are things we believe in ways of behaving. So it's just again learning what your patterns are and then learning strategies to constantly interrupt them so that you create new beliefs and new patterns and new habits that really serve you in a more powerful, brilliant way. I love this and I love um I c I can hear how passionate you are about helping female leaders and we have a lot of female leaders inside the home care community, I want to shout out to Denise for specifically, because Denise is in our community is a leader of a community that is focused on improving health care and the customer, specifically the customer experience.

And so I think that there's so much work that could be done with improving patient care, and I think that she's one of these people spearheading the culture of change in in this sense of seeing a need for improved communication, improved customer service and improved customer experiences throughout your healthcare journey as you come to in the office or in your in the hospital and um so I feel like those those things are just so great and important to have because our health care system really super needs help itself. That's it, yeah, and it's great to hear um I love the idea and which is why I started find calm here in the beginning uh it's just start to lead in a calmer space, so if I step out into the world as a calmer, happier, more enjoyable person that that just it transfers onto other people and people pick up that energy.

So I really believe in just really it comes from within and starts with yourself and how to really take care of yourself because you really can't help others um if you're not healthy and so those are things I struggled with in the last two years and why I say I mentioned my client today, you know, like you know what I really need to prioritize my health again because I've been spending so much time and energy building this amazing consulting business high, you know, bringing on team members, but there's gotta be a time for Deb to really focus on Deb, right, that's kind of where I'm at in the game, but thank you so much for being here, can you tell everybody just to let everybody know how they can best find you. Yeah, well you're welcome, Thank you Devin I'm so glad that you got that awareness today. That's really awesome. Um you can find me, I'm on social media, Kathy Mila. I have a website, Cathy Miller dot com. I'm on instagram facebook clubhouse. I have a weekly clubhouse room on Thursdays called live on purpose and I am also on linkedin. It's all on Kathy Mila and I'd love to offer your audience a free gift today.

You can get it at free gift from Kathy dot com. It's a work life balance playbook and it's how I create balance in my own life and how I show my clients and how to create that work life balance for them. And it does start with finding that fine tuning what it looks like for you to be whole and healthy and be able to give again from an overflow rather than from a place of emptiness. Yeah, no, it's so true. And thank you so much for sharing. I thank you so much for all of the amazing gifts. I appreciate that. We'll have that in the show notes for everybody listening until the next time we're gonna wrap it up for for today with Kathie. Please feel free to share this episode. If you have enjoyed it, share it with anybody, you think might enjoy this episode as well, leave a review. Um you know, if you're on Apple and you or Spotify, you can certainly up vote or review this community strategy podcast. So feel free to to do that because we are working on our growth plan and this episode will come out after, but I'm about to go to pO'd fest in Orlando.

And so I feel like I'm just gonna, we're just gonna keep up leveling this podcast and and really getting it to to a lot more people to share this amazing message of how is possible to find calm in the process of building launching and growing communities online. So thanks again, Kathy for everyone who's listening, have a great rest of your day, evening night, hope you're finding calm and talk to you next time, Bye go. Be amazing.

Episode 78: Helping Leaders Crush Their Goals with Kathy Mela
Episode 78: Helping Leaders Crush Their Goals with Kathy Mela
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