MF 116 : Creating the Mindset for Moving Forward, with Regan Hillyer
Regan Hillyer is an entrepreneur, speaker, author, and coach. Today, Regan will share why strategy is meaningless without the psychology and mindset to move forward.
Successes at a glance:
Founder, Regan Hillyer International
Life and Leadership Coach
Featured in numerous media outlets:
ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, The Boston Globe, Star Tribune, The Miami Herald, The Huffington Post, Forbes, Entrepreneur.
Believe Your Way to BADASS: The Interactive Guide to Redefining your Beliefs, Developing your Self-Love, and Manifesting your Way to your Best, Most Badass Self (Paperback | Kindle) [Forward by Regan Hillyer]
Setback failure or time when things fell apart:
All great stories have large crisis moments and Regan’s is no exception. As you’ll discover in Regan’s “aha” journey below, she went thru several transitions w/ her business. At one point, she was doing a lot of 1-1 coaching, speaking, and training; building it to a $1M a year business in NZ and AUS. On the surface, everything looked fantastic: she was showered w/ praise from friends and loved ones but something was off. This uneasy feeling continued to grow and finally surfaced at a live event w/ 30 people, just as Regan was getting ready to go on stage. The attendees had paid thousands to attend and Regan was poised to make quite a bit of money. But something inside her kept telling her not to go on stage. At first, she couldn’t figure out why there was this internal resistance; it wasn’t until she had a heart-to-heart w/ herself that she realized that the business wasn’t truly aligned w/ her purpose. Moreover, part of Regan’s lifestyle goal was to travel the world and this business model ran counter to that, forcing her to always be in a location that was dictated by the live events. Add to this, the limited capacity of physical-live events. There was a ceiling on scalability and growth which Regan had already hit.
As w/ last wk’s guest, Yigal Adato, you are seeing an example of a setback that occurred during a time when on the surface, everything looks like a success. The point being that moving forward isn’t simply about making a lot of money. That’s important and for Regan, it’s a critical goal. BUT the alignment of purpose w/in the engine that gets you to that goal is equally critical. Consider that Regan had broken away from the traditional 9-5 path and was making a 7-figure income as an entrepreneur. Many of us would compromise a lot for that kind of success. But what Regan’s story illustrates is that alignment isn’t just financial gain, it’s about the 360 of your life and the vision of how you want to live your life. Regan did a very bold thing: she shut down the business and started from scratch.
The “aha” moment that sparked a pivot:
In speaking w/ Regan, the word that comes to mind is “journey” and as she shares, she’s been on quite an extraordinary one. Regan grew up in Auckland, New Zealand, raised in a family that believed in education. Regan started out on the traditional path: she worked hard, studied in school and went on to university. Later, she studied architecture and was on her way to a 9-5, M-F career; she was following the “system.” But somewhere along the way, Regan realized that this path wasn’t for her. This was her first “aha” moment. Regan knew there were so many other possibilities out there and that she could do and be more but as w/ all big realizations, she had no idea where to begin.
As if upgrading to a new operating system, Regan pivoted from architecture to personal development. Although she was just starting out and quite young, Regan already had a grand vision that matched her larger than life personality: to find her purpose. She had already decided that the traditional narrative wasn’t it. What she did know were two objectives: 1) to make money doing what she loved and 2) to be a force for positive change in the world.
The second objective really came to fruition as people started noticing a change in Regan. She became a magnet for change as people started gravitating towards her, asking her for the blueprint. If you follow Regan, you’ll quickly discover she embodies the “social” in social media. As if the mist from the window were wiped away, Regan discovered that she loved helping others, especially those close to her. This led to a breakthrough “aha” moment and that led to her coaching practice.
As w/ all great entrepreneurs, there is no satisfaction in complacent comfort. Regan sought to grow the seed of her coaching business into something more. Regan’s journey continued w/ speaking engagements at events. As noted above, this development had its shares of success and but also limitations.
Today, Regan has created growth, scale, and global reach by shifting her business to an online model. This “aha” moment has always been driven by the two drivers, mentioned above: 1) make money doing what you love, 2) be a force for change. Moreover, Regan knew in her heart that she was put on this Earth to do something big and follow massive dreams.
Moving Forward listeners, reaching financial success is only part of the alignment equation and for Regan, it’s an all or nothing proposition. When she found that her in-person business model wasn’t jiving w/ her internally, she shut it down and started over. Not easy to walk away from something that is making 6 or 7-figures a year but the biggest takeaway from Regan’s story is that having a moving forward mindset sometimes requires very bold actions: starting over so you can reach even greater heights than you ever imagined.
The other big take away from Regan’s story is to have a big picture vision: listen to it, let it be your compass. The cool part about this is that Regan doesn’t always have the “how to” answers when she starts. When she decided to shift her business model to online, she didn’t know exactly how to do that. But what Regan does have is that big picture vision that compels her to jump “all in” and build the strategy as you go. You heard a similar philosophy from others like Joseph Bonner, who decided to build a media empire and figure it out along the way. When it comes down to it, it’s not the how but the why that moves you forward.
Resource or cultural experience that inspired Regan to move forward:
A cultural experience from Regan’s childhood. Regan’s father did a lot of work in India. While Regan did not go w/ him on these trips, she would listen intently to all of his stories when he returned. Moreover, Regan’s father shared the good and the bad. In talking about India and seeing homeless kids on the side of the road, he would give Regan the mindset of perspective and appreciation for all of the opportunities and gifts she had growing up. This not only instilled the travel bug in Regan but cultivated a philanthropic streak which is as much a part of Regan’s identity as her entrepreneurial aspirations. Currently, Regan is spearheading an initiative to build schools in India.
Favorite app/website/resource or productivity hack:
Basecamp: a straightforward project management platform that helps Regan manage a team of 37 that is spread out throughout the world.
Regan’s hack: create to-do lists by person rather than by project. The open-table nature of Basecamp allows transparency and for everyone to see everyone else’s to-do list.
How Regan recharges when facing a roadblock or challenge:
While many entrepreneurs fall into the pattern of working weeks or months on the business and then taking off a few weeks, this doesn’t work well for Regan’s work and leisure flow which moves on a more daily basis. So Regan compensates w/ a daily regimen of tuning in, making she sure she has the proper mindset and to recharge and center herself. Like brushing your teeth or showering, this is a daily non-negotiable. For Regan, her mindset refresh comes in the form of 10 minutes to an hour of meditation, journaling, breathing, and being intentional.
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Advice to past self while going thru a difficult time:
Success is 80% an internal game and about having the right mindset. If something is not working, go within and rewire. Ten years ago while she was in university and diving deep into the personal development world, Regan was obsessed w/ the how rather than the why w/ respect to her big goals. She was running Google searches on “how to quit my 9-to-5 job” before she even had one! On top of that, Regan was borrowing money, getting into debt, attending seminars and investing in her personal development journey. However, despite all of this, Regan felt as if nothing was shifting or changing. She was stuck in neutral while mounting tremendous debt. This came to a head when she candidly shared w/ a coach she was working w/ her doubts about whether this was really for her, proclaiming, “maybe this is not for me, maybe I’m not meant to be successful.” In response, the coach laughed in her face and said “Regan, you have this backward … I see you focusing on all the strategies … how much work are you doing on you?” It was then that Regan realized she had been spending so much time on strategy (how) and not fine tuning herself and discovering her why. Regan’s mentor then shared this about success: it’s 80% psychology, mindset and the inner game and 20% on the external: strategies and actions. Once Regan started focusing on her inner game, that’s when things started to shift.
Parting wisdom (in a few words):
“You can have it all and on your terms!”