60. Discovering A Coaching Niche You're Truly Aligned To - Evercoach - By Mindvalley

January 25, 2022

60. Discovering A Coaching Niche You’re Truly Aligned To

Do you find it difficult to choose one specific coaching niche to focus on? Or do you struggle to stick to the niche you chose and find yourself overthinking and changing it all the time? It's a common challenge among coaches who believe that defining...

Do you find it difficult to choose one specific coaching niche to focus on? Or do you struggle to stick to the niche you chose and find yourself overthinking and changing it all the time? It's a common challenge among coaches who believe that defining their coaching niche might limit their possibilities to serve and impact people. Thus it's hard to make the decision and stick to it.

Yet, in reality, it's the other way around. A coaching niche offers clarity and focus to your coaching business. What may be really affecting our commitment are our past life experiences and beliefs.

In today's episode, Coach Ajit coaches Mark, a Certified Life Coach student who is struggling to identify and commit to a coaching niche to grow his coaching business. Listen to this coaching conversation to explore why this happens and the step-by-step process to find a coaching niche that you're truly aligned to.

If you resonate with this or have clients with similar challenges, this episode is for you. This coaching conversation has been edited for ease of listening but in essence, keeps all elements.

Certified Life Coach is opening for re-enrollment soon, so go ahead and learn more about this highly-rated certification program to be part of the next batch of certified life coaches by Evercoach.

Key Insights:

  • Why we struggle to commit and stick to one coaching niche or idea at a time.
  • How our life experiences shape our everyday decisions, and how to bring awareness to them.
  • Guiding questions to find the right coaching niche that is in alignment and profitable.
  • Listen to Episode #53 "How To Identify Your Coaching Niche" for Coach Ajit's step-by-step niching method.
  • Learn more about Certified Life Coach.

Coach Ajit (00:00):
You are listening to Master Coaching with Ajit podcast that inspires coaches to impact the lives of their clients more meaningfully. I am Coach Ajit and I'm known for coaching high performers, entrepreneurs, and leaders. I'm also a serial entrepreneur and author of many books. On this podcast, I am answering your burning questions. I'm also demonstrating and deconstructing behind the scenes coaching sessions.

Coach Ajit (00:35):
And in today's episode, you are listening into a coaching conversation. This coaching conversation was very interesting. It's with this amazing spiritual man called Mark Kerwin. Who's also part of our Certified Life Coach community. He is an amazing human being. Who's been doing amazing things across the world. And we started really interestingly by asking a simple question that you may have asked yourself, how do I find my niche? And as we continued the conversation, we explored some very interesting thoughts that came through his experience of life, which I thought was really interesting, intriguing, and important for you to listen into. If you are, as a coach that have wondered, if you can't stick to a niche, can't stick to an idea there's exploration that needs to be done. And that exploration led us to find something interesting about Mark. Find something interesting that may have shaped his life until now, and will continue to shape his life as he adapts and grow through it.

Coach Ajit (01:34):
So very interesting conversation. I am certain, you're gonna love listening into this conversation. Listen in with curiosity, not only to listen in for how am I coaching, but also ask those questions to yourself. You see, if you can create that awareness towards who you are, why you are the way you are, what are those experiences that shaped your life? How can you learn from these experiences? How can you let go of that baggage and, and really lean into the learning. You'll find that you'll find more power in your work that you'll find more alignment in your, in your work. You'll find a lot more growth in your work. So I'm very curious to see how this conversation impacts your life going forward, listening to this conversation. And at any point you feel like you wanna hit that rating button. Give us a five star rating. Go ahead and do so. Sharing a quick story of how this podcast is impacting your life, how this podcast has been meaningful to your coaching practice would also mean a lot for us. Thank you so much for tuning in now. Let's listen in to my conversation with Mark. Hey, how are you doing, man?

Mark Kerwin (02:39):
Well, made it St. Lucia. I'm pretty good. Yeah, it's amazing. Yeah.

Coach Ajit (02:43):
How's the day been?

Mark Kerwin (02:44):
It's been long Tuesdays. I like go from about seven in the morning till about now with various things, business calls. Um, I'm very fortunate to be in real estate because it's very flexible, so,

Coach Ajit (02:57):
Oh, that's awesome.

Coach Ajit (03:20):
That's amazing. That's amazing. It's good to be in a spot that feels so comfortable in every way of life. That's awesome.

Mark Kerwin (03:27):
Yeah. And there's so much I can stack under when it comes to philanthropy and giving and tithing and we kind of adopted Father Joseph as our patron Saint, whether he is a real historical person or not, we just use him as a figurehead and um, it's been really nice. Yeah. And my partner she's really into real estate as well. So we, we have a lot of stuff to do together, which is fun.

Coach Ajit (03:49):
That's amazing. That's amazing. Really good to hear that. So Mark, I, I got a note from you where, while you booked this podcast episode where we are gonna work together. Um, but before we lean into that, I just wanna make sure that that's still something that is what is present to you right now. So kind of leaning in here to check in what would make this coaching session, this conversation, a great conversation for you.

Mark Kerwin (04:12):
NI think I'm more interested in how do I keep moving forward? So by the time I'm in my sixties or you know, who knows things could accelerate faster, but I really love the coaching. I've been coaching my whole life, tennis, swimming lessons. You know, I was always coaching people, um, and bridging my love of meditation and also my love of exploring things like big ticket things like God's sex money, uh, very comfortable talking about big subject matters with people on a granular level. And how do I slowly and surely and consistently, um, offer the coaching without having to be perfect and, and just keep my real, I wanna keep focusing on as a realtor full time because it's, you know, if I do this for the next 10 years, it'll I won't have to do anything else after that. I can focus full time on farming, hanging out with my goats and coaching.

Mark Kerwin (05:09):
So I think that's more been probably in the back of my head for a long time, because I've been following your stuff and I've got a coach Robin Sharma since 2013 and I've worked a lot with him and I really love it. I love having mentors, tribe of mentors. Um, I spent maybe 15 years of my life in very intensive yoga centric, kind of guru dominated, uh, places. And I'm not willing to do that anymore. Like just one person give my whole life and money and everything to the guru, but I like having multiple oh, absolutely high performing individuals, you know? And so this it's a nice medium, we're creating a farm and it's like an intentional community, but it's not a commune cause I've lived through that enough to know that I'm not currently wishing to live in a commune anymore. There's a lot of wherever there's more light, there's more dark. So there's a lot of dysfunction too, that goes on in some of those places. So just enjoying more auto, a little more autonomy and uh, that also figures in with earning more money and having a little more autonomy over over it.

Coach Ajit (06:12):
I hear you.

Mark Kerwin (06:13):
I think I spent most of my life learning how to live on less and live a radically amazing life in India, Hawaii, like been to all kinds of amazing places, but I'm interested in learning how to manage successfully balance wise L living with more, more

Coach Ajit (06:29):
So, so I'm, I'm trying to understand and I will love your love to have you bring your awareness towards, uh, concentrated direction. So, so I can understand as to what is it that we can achieve today or find today or work on today, maybe we'll achieve. Maybe we'll not achieve, we'll see how that goes, but at least work on today. So we could be, I could be a little bit more directed in this conversation. We have like 45 minutes together.

Mark Kerwin (06:52):

Coach Ajit (06:52):
Which is a really short period of time to tackle really

Mark Kerwin (06:57):
That's a lot. It's a lot of your time though. Thank you. Yeah. Thank you very much.

Coach Ajit (07:00):
So what I'm hearing as of now, and then help me navigate this. So we have some sense of clarity is that you are looking to find a resolve to consistently work on your coaching business. Is that, is that what you're suggestive of when you, when you share what you shared?

Mark Kerwin (07:16):
Yes. So now that I get, when I hear that reflected back to me and I wanna go even more granted or what it is is I've had a wealth of huge experiences through (unidentified). And you know, I'd like to get really as deep as I can quickly as I can. And it's the most authentic, genuine niche. It's, it's sort of like farming and hunting for real estate. A lot of people are, oh, let's try and get the whole town. No, you just need 300 homes around your house to consistently advertise and farm. And, and that's where your business explodes. And so I could be a general coach later down the road, but I really do wanna discover or commit to the most niche that I can go because I think it's a, it's a more, uh, clearer path forward and also allows the people that need that specific skillset or coaching in to bring that out in them.

Mark Kerwin (08:08):
That's kind of probably where this coaching call would be helpful because sometimes I worry, not worry. I just, I have a lot of, I love a lot of things, you know, uh, and choice can be a limiting factor in life sometimes too, just like in the past, we didn't have any choice. And that was a limiting factor. Now I think because of our culture, convenience and choice, we sometimes have too many choices and too many options and too many partners and commitment is something that I'm not afraid of. So I would like to commit to a particular niche, even though there's lots of other things I could do, but it's okay. I think no matter what niche I take, I think it will be more effective and for others as well, to find me on the website and on the biographical page at Mindvalley, if I'm really clear about what it is that I'm particularly suited for, for them to have a discussion with.

Coach Ajit (09:02):
OK. So that, that sounds fair. And that's kind of how and why you find a niche. The niche is not to limit somebody's potential. It is actually expand in a particular direction. It's almost like saying let's do one task first and then we'll do the next task instead of doing all the tasks together. So your understanding is phenomenal. You're very clear on why you're trying to find the nation for splitting your overall energy over 10, 20, 50 different items. You're saying, what if I dedicated my resources to a singular focus and what would it mean for me? What it, what would it mean for my business and will it accelerate overall outcomes that I am willing and wanting to create in my life? So fantastic approach, uh, Mark my question before we lean into how and what that niche may look like, my curiosity is in the past, you have chosen to choose something and then change the direction.

Coach Ajit (09:54):
What has led to that change in direction? The reason why I asked this question is because more often than not what we have found in our experience of working with coaches, and it's a coincidence that we are talking about a coaching related subject today, um, we've found, especially in coaching related subjects or coaches is they sometimes do select a niche, but then they in a few weeks, or a few months time, they doubt that niche and then they move to another one and then they move to another one. And usually there's an underlying pattern that is, um, that is causing that it has less to do with the niche or identification of the niche. It's more to do with a story that has been, um, always present in their lives or a story that they tell themselves. I'm just curious to, to, to hear or listen into, if there was something that you've found yourself, because you said you've had many jobs before and either a sense of freedom takes it away, their sense of something else takes it away. Is there something that you go, well, I have chosen niches before, and then I changed because of,

Mark Kerwin (10:55):
Well, I think almost the opposite of that in that the one niche that I discovered, like I was when I was a kid, I played like a ton tennis. I was really focused on competitive tennis. Then I went to India and, you know, I spent about 20 years sort of focusing on meditation and I think I'm getting through healing it, but there's definitely a feeling of Icarus getting too close to the sun and getting burned in sense that giving everything to one thing, including my money and time and life and service was really intense, you know? And there are benefits to that. I have so many amazing self-realization and actualizations the goal of practicing those meditations. But it, when dealing in a, like if you're in a hospital, sweet surprise, someone throws a bed at you to kind of motto that you might hear in places like that.

Mark Kerwin (11:42):
It's not always a place where people that are healthy come there's sometimes people that are very sick come. And because of that, I think I experienced a lot of that darkness too. A lot of that different people and different desires to be there. So I'm, I'm a little bit cautious around completely devoting myself to, you know, one particular focus or person because of that. Now, I mean, now I'm focused really on real estate. I have been for 15 years and now as a realtor this past year, I got licensed. I'm just carrying on. It makes sense. Everything clicks. I guess what I wanna do is keep moving forward on the coaching side because I love coaching. I'm doing it anyhow with the teams that I'm building for real estate. But I do see the time down the road when I would love to bring in a little more income still, but just not have to travel anywhere.

Mark Kerwin (12:30):
I love not having, I've been to 70 countries. I've been moving most of my life. I'm really starting to feel inclined, not go anywhere like my front porch and you know, a few places with my dog and, and I'm pretty happy. So coaching is a great forum to still stay connected. It provides significance and all those six human needs that Tony talks about, you know, impact growth, certainty, uncertainty, significance, contribution. Yeah, just like to keep moving forward on the coaching side, but I'm not sure how to balance it or, or, or not make it become an obsession, so to speak and, and be totally devoted to it while still being serious about it and giving it a bit of time every month, coming to the coaching conference, coming, you know, listening in on how, what other coaches are doing and also feeling where's the best fit between the need of the world. My passion and my skillset. So that icky guy thing is always present in my mind too, that it's just not all about me. It's also about certain trends that are emerging, you know, when it comes to how we're navigating our society now. And, and I think things have changed a lot when it comes to sex and money and God and all these subjects that we're pretty stagnant for a long time and pretty, pretty much rigid and given to us.

Coach Ajit (13:38):
So Mark, I have, I have two, I think there are two parts to our conversation that we will have to explore. Firstly, I'd love to explore a little bit more of where does that fear set for you of devouring yourself to something I, I see where your similar story that you shared, maybe interesting to explore a little bit further creating anything does require a little bit of devotion. Of course it, it, it, it is not something that just happens, right. It's deliberate. Uh, so my curiosity would be where is that resistance and is our past situation or past experience becoming our current reality or is there a learning that we can secure from it and move forward from there? So that's something that I like to explore. And the second part that I like to explore is really help you identify that, that, that niche, if I may, to be able to be able to really, uh, go into something. But I think before we do discovery of the niche, I think my curiosity is what does it mean for you to devote to something? And how does that devotion look like and what comes up for you when you think about this devotion?

Mark Kerwin (14:49):
I think of course from being a father now for 17 plus years and, and also being in real estate now for a longer period of time to see the waves of day to day, having some time away from it, I think I'm, it's fair enough for me to actually say I'm pretty much over or have gotten healed through that, having the kids and also running a business in real estate, in different formats, but it's always the same thing. It's always real estate and investing in asset classes and just being really successful the last 10 years with basically getting that some, a lot outta nothing, just starting with nothing or minus pretty far in debt when I got divorced. So, so yeah, I guess I have a very tangible, uh, experience in front of me that shows me, wow, that is what devotion looks like. It's through thick and it, it's not something it's okay to walk through it some days it's okay to be sleeping through it some days it's just as long as you keep returning to it and that it feeds me and that I can feed it.

Mark Kerwin (15:42):
And that it's positive, privately happy, publicly useful. Good for me now. Good later. Good for others now. Good for them later. Good for the world now. Good later. Yeah. I'd like to bring that. When I look at how I started in 2007, which is almost 15 years ago, I'd like to have a more conscious journey over the next 15 years within the coaching world. So that at the end of those 15 years, I'll have had, I'll already have built up a significant amount of impact and success. If I then choose to do it full time or dedicate more of my skillset to it, my resources to it. Does that make sense?

Coach Ajit (16:15):
Does it, does my curiosity still is why do you fear devotion? Because what you're saying is that you're past it and I hear it, but what I also heard it previously is that was your big resistance yeah. In choosing a need, uh, in choosing even coaching with more dedication. I'm not in any way suggestive of that. That's what you need to do. That's no, no personal choice. And I'm happy for you to make a decision of saying right now, I'm gonna put some effort to its real estate build assets and then dedicate a lot more time to what's coaching in the future. It's absolutely perfect. As an answer, as a, as a direction, my curiosity is where does that stem from? Because this seems to be a hidden, um, narrative. It may not be more evident. It may feel like it's complete, but just because it came up, I wanna make sure that we explore it while we have, well,

Mark Kerwin (17:03):
I'll give you an example. I was at the tree of life with Gabriel cousins for two years. And you know, people would come through there and I had on numerous occasions, like people come and because I, I get into certain states, you know, of God consciousness and there's charisma around there's cities, mystic powers around that. Also charisma, that's all like flies that land on shit can fly. So it's not the purpose of a spiritual life. It's the love with serve with love. That's the highest, there's no need for mystic. I don't care about any of that stuff, but they do come depending on what state you're in. And they attract all kinds of people. And I've had some freaking weird people attracted to me that like are scary. You know, like one lady wanted to marry me and she was like, following me around and she'd leave things in the garden that I was looking like, just freaky, fatal type stuff.

Mark Kerwin (17:50):
And yeah, I do. I fear that cult personality, I've seen the downside of it, you know, those show and all, and all kinds of in the sixties and seventies, Jim Jones char you know, there's that dark element of socalled spiritual life. And I'm, I'm nervous about it. I don't, I don't wanna attract that. I don't want to, I'm not the guy, you know, like everyone is the guy , you're the guy. I'm, we're all the guy, I guess I am the guy, but sore, you, you know, like this, even on this call, the other last week with a guy from Switzerland and he was like, oh my God, I just wanna be Mark Kerr. And I was like, no, you don't. You wanna be to best Toby, whatever the guy from Switzerland is. I said, you do not want, I wanna be the best Market, but you don't, you've gotta be the best Toby.

Mark Kerwin (18:31):
Like there's no one like you in the universe. So don't, you won't find happiness trying to be anyone else. And usually the person you're trying to copy, isn't even happy. So, you know, I just am conscious around that. There is, um, like all things there's cults of personalities that form around people that, you know, are, are doing great things or impacting people. And then people get attached to the people rather than the results that they're getting from those people. And I'm nervous about that because I I've seen it happen really quickly. You know? So I don't, I don't want that. There's no joy in that. For me, it it's actually really uncomfortable. You know,

Coach Ajit (19:08):
That's, that's good that you have awareness to us that that could happen. Most people don't. So my curiosity would be that somebody who is that aware that this could happen, there's a potential chance that people could lose the way and stop focusing on the result and focus on the person and become a fan or whatever you wanna call them. Do you think your awareness to that is probably going to be the biggest reason it won't happen because you're aware about it, that this could happen and there's no real challenge.

Mark Kerwin (19:38):
Yes. And actually what I fear the most is behind all that. Like if you ask another why, why that, why that it's actually, I'm afraid of not being able to say no, and I am getting much better at saying no. No, thank you. No, thank you. My first, what partner? She followed me around for two years enjoying the, the ashram that I was at under the guise of being a part of it. But really she just wanted to marry me. She didn't wanna marry me. She wanted to marry an idea of me. So the whole thing was a lie. And then I, my gut in my heart said no, but my head was like, started to, you know, she wore me down, basically, I, or she didn't wear me down. I chose to, you know, not say no and not listen and trust in a PR in something that's impacted me for the last, you know, 17 years now.

Mark Kerwin (20:21):
I didn't really ever feel any need to have children, everyone in the world's mind. Anyhow. So what do I there's? No, I never felt that distinction. I probably had a ton of kids in my last life, physical ones, but I don't really care whose vagina they come out of. It doesn't really, or whose semen they were, you know, eggs and semen. It's just all who cares. That's a genuine feeling. I have. It's not like I'm trying to make it up. I really never really, I love my daughters. I'm crazy about them, but I'm not that attached to 'em, you know, they're, they're just coming through the universe like I am. So I, I don't feel overly the need to have my own own. Just like every time I look at someone there there's, there's, there's, there's a kid right there really to love. So...

Mark Kerwin (21:01):
Not being able to say no, not trusting myself and fearing, you know, just also really trusting how unique, insane I am to everyone else. And that I do know what's best for me. And I can say no. And I know intuitively through my gut, my heart and my head, what to say yes to as well. That's the big, that's the, that's the crux there. The fear is not saying no. And I need to say no, that's the fear because I there's still that desire sometimes to be liked rather than respected. And a friend of mine 10 years ago in business said to me, you, you, you need, you would do a lot better if you just focused on being respected and not being liked. And that's, that was, I, I sense. That was true then, but I know it's true now. And, um,

Coach Ajit (21:46):
Is that a fear or is that an area that you can grow into?

Mark Kerwin (21:50):

Coach Ajit (21:50):
Because learning how to say no is the art of setting boundaries.

Mark Kerwin (21:53):
Setting boundaries, saying no, but also being liked and being okay with it, not being afraid of, you know, what's this what's gonna come next. You asking me to marry me. Or, you know, I've had several people ask me to marry them in short periods of time. And it was always like, like a deer in headlights. I was like, I don't even believe in monogamy or, or, or one marr - I just don't. I probably just don't, it's not my thing, even though I've been a long term serial monogamist, I just, I don't know anymore. I'm, I'm curious, I'm hurting 50 is the first time in my life where I've even had chance to slow down and it's like, yeah, wow. I, I don't really know what I know anymore. And I'm very curious to find out what's true for me now, if I was very open and listening, and that's why coaching for me, because I'm in such a new place as well. I feel like I have a lot of experience to give and a lot of really good resources to share with people without giving them an idea, just giving them lots of choices to choose from. If they ask me about certain things meditation, or, or how do I start coaching? And while I'm in such a new place, you know..

Coach Ajit (22:56):
Can I, can I ask you to reflect back on something? Yeah. In the interest of our conversation? Yeah. So the place where we started this conversation was where you said, I find it hard to devote myself to, to coaching or to something that may feel overwhelming over time. We found reasons for it, why you feel, so there is some version of fear or concern let's call it where people might like you a lot more than you want people to fall in likeness or love, uh, with you, you, uh, expressed it could be because in the past that has happened in the past, that could have been a relationship thing where you were finding it hard to say no. And then now you're learning the skill of being able to say, no, you're learning the skill of setting, better boundaries. What I want us to bring our reflection towards.

Coach Ajit (23:44):
So we can, and, and maybe some of these questions you need to reflect on again and again, repeatedly. So you can get past this hurdle of devotion and the reason why I, it will be important for you to explore this is because anything great does need some level of devotion. It doesn't have to be completely devoted where you don't remember anything else. That's, that's, that's a choice that you wanna be that devoted, or you wanna be devoted enough. There is variety. That's that's, that's how devoted you wanna be is, is, is a personal choice based on the endeavor itself. But devotion is still required. Interest is still required, which I don't necessarily see. You have a challenge with, you might be having a little bit of a block that concerns your, um, say devotion for, for, for lack of different or using the same term to that one.

Coach Ajit (24:39):
Niche. That one idea, that one philosophy, that one model of coaching. So you can at least create progress in a significant way in that direction. So my curiosity and my question and my, uh, reflection back to you for you to further reflect on is to really inquire what would it mean if Mark was that light? What would it mean? What does Mark have to become? What is Mark version 75.0? That is capable of that is willing to, that is interested in, that will find a better way to deal with all these nuances that may have challenged us in the past, but have no reason to be carried into the future. We, we all can carry the baggage of the past, or we can learn from the baggage of the past and finally put it down. Right? So, so your, your challenge here, your exploration beyond our conversation, and for anybody that is listening to this recording is for them to explore further as to what is it that it really means to create the next version of you that allows for all those fears to become obsolete or not important, because we are creating a version of us and, or a new version of us, and we can all coach ourselves to it.

Coach Ajit (26:00):
We can all learn through experiences and create that new version. What would that version look like? Like there are beliefs that we have, right? And there are beliefs that are empowering. And then there are beliefs that are limiting. This is clearly a limiting belief because stopping you to do something that you're really interested in. So this belief is not useful. Let's create a new version of this belief that is available to Mark X.0. Right? And for anybody that is listening for their next version, if it's an empowering belief, you wanna keep it, this is not a empowering belief. This is a disempowering belief. So, so let's work on that. And I'm sure you'll find that version. You have access to my email. So you can send me a note as to if something comes through, let's go to the question that you did start with, because I do wanna explore that with you. And I wanna see if I can work with you to guide you to find that niche if I may.

Mark Kerwin (26:48):
Can I, may, may I, may I add one thing? Yeah. Just to reflect on what you said. Absolutely. Because I had, I get a lot of downloads quickly insight. And what I'm realizing too, is that, you know, the (unidentified) was all about martyrdom. And so artists, peace keepers, peacekeepers, they all ended up having to be sacrificed shot. You know, Jackson Pollock tortured alcoholic, like the aquarium age to me feels different than that. And what I truly love doing is talking about joy, peace and freedom. My three highest values, uh, especially about freedom, freedom first, because without it, you can't choose to love. I'd like to dedicate more of my life to trying to help leaders like Xi Jinping and Putin and other people to like, like, see just how miserable they are trying to control these people and to be not for freedom, peace, and joy, but to be for a fairly large militaristic pharmaceutical paradigm.

Mark Kerwin (27:37):
So I, you know, I'm inspired by Desmond Tutu and I spent time with (unidentified) and Dalai Lama, I'd really like to move more into speaking at that level to humanity. It's like the people in new Guinea, like 30,000 years ago had a lot of time to pink scores and hang out and play with six. And I'm thinking they're a primitive society. I don't think so. They were in advanced society cuz they spent a lot of time having fun. Maybe they lived a little shorter, but like our ideas around advanced civilization is very strange when I look at what we've created and I'm not getting down on flush toilets and sewers, but that I'd like to be more using humor and drama or just public speaking is a forum to advocate for peace and freedom and love and joy just because it's more fun to bring that out in people. So that we'll put that aside. I just wanted to express that, that through coaching, it also does provide me a forum to encourage others, to find things in their life that give them freedoms and peace and love and joy. Cause we need, we just need more of that. We need more happy, alive, awake, aware of people who are ready to as Ken Wilber says grow up, clean up and wake up or wake up, grow up, clean up or whatever order or all three. So,

Coach Ajit (28:47):
Oh, thank you for that Mark. So back to the question, based on the download that you just shared and also the question that you had asked previously, the question that you really wanna inquire, which is niche. So to set context, niche is a compass it's like finding the direction of travel. It also is true for like any compass. If you start to find the direction of travel and you find out that the direction of travel is not incongruence with the final destination that you wanna get to, you can change the direction because the point is not the direction. The point is the outcome, right? The point is the destination.

Mark Kerwin (29:26):
The, or the iteration, right? The iterating as well,

Coach Ajit (29:30):
The iterating. So when we, when we identify niche, what we are really identifying is what is the immediate direction of travel that I can choose that will lead me to my final destination. The reason for this context is like yourself, Mark. Most of us who want to impact society in a positive way are expansive being, we have many capabilities, we have many learnings, we have many expressions and ways of expression and we would like to do it all, absolutely nothing wrong with that. That's what the destination may look like. But the journey or the direction of travel is the niche. It's the place to get started. So we can acquire the audience, the Market, the skills, the understanding to become the person that we need to become while we are taking this journey. Right? So we are, we are finding direction. So when we'll work on identifying a niche, Mark, what I am hoping that we will come from is not to find the perfect direction because the direction will change.

Coach Ajit (30:34):
It has to because the destination is so big. It's so beautiful. That there may be different directions and paths that will come to you as you are taking the journey. So that's what we need to understand. Firstly, before we even have a conversation of how to find your niche, because most of us try to find the perfect niche. There is no perfect niche. Perfect niche is basically the first direction and direction will evolve. If you look at anybody that you really appreciate as an impact maker in the world, the thing that they did is they started somewhere and then evolves from it, right? If you appreciate the journey of, uh, say Tony Robbins, you mentioned his name once, right? So he started somewhere, but he's not there at all. Like he started by doing a small seminar and going to Jim Rohn's workshop for 27 times or whatever times he did nowhere close to where he is today.

Coach Ajit (31:31):
Right? My journey is not the same. Vishen, my business partner's journey is not the same. Ken Wilber's journey is not the same. It's completely different from where we started. And that's because we listened to the direction and finally found the destination or some version of the destination. We are still, a lot of us are still very much in our finding the next direction part. And that's absolutely. Okay. Right. So with this context and with the understanding that you mentioned, you have three very clearly identified values and that's beautiful because that helps us jump off from a really great place. You said freedom, peace and joy out of which you said freedom being a really dominant one because it lets you express a lot more and so on and so forth. Let's use that as a jump off point, let's use the value of freedom as a jump off point and you can change this later, right? But we are gonna work on a model very specific to Mark's way of thinking a little bit, uh, but to identify what the niche could be. Right. So what we know is our core value is safe freedom, right? And because our core value is freedom. Wouldn't you believe that if we worked in some version of freedom or expression of freedom or helping other people find freedom would be probably most aligned to our day to day work, which will fire us up. Would you say that to be true?

Mark Kerwin (32:44):
Can you repeat that? I need to hear it again.

Coach Ajit (32:48):
Yeah, the question really is that if you worked in alignment with our value, a key value or the value or most important values, do we find more joy in everyday work? And do we feel that we could overcome any obstacle because it's so ingrained the work that we are doing with us?

Mark Kerwin (33:07):

Coach Ajit (33:09):
Yes, absolutely. Right. So the first thing, if, if a, if a person does not know their niche, a great way to start if they have availability and if they have already discovered their values, like you have Mark is to remember that the first piece of the puzzle is your value because you'll stick to whatever you do because it's so you like, it's so easy for Mark to work with someone and so congruent and so joyous for Mark to work with someone that is seeking freedom as an umbrella first, right? Because it's in alignment with Mark's value and he will speak to it so much more comfortably. Right. And work with it so much more comfortably. So let's start at freedom now and now let's distill it further. Right? So say you found freedom as your fundamental now distilling it, you had identified or you suggested there's certain experiences in your life that created the version of Mark that we are talking to today. Right. You talked about being married twice, or you, you talked about your two kids.

Mark Kerwin (34:07):
You've been married. Yeah. I've been married once, but my partner of 15 years were, you know, were life partners were, we're not.

Coach Ajit (34:12):
So you've had two partners, like long term partners. You have traveled to India for 20 years and had been in a meditation center camp. How are you gonna call it? And there are many experiences like this. Would you say there were maybe three or four definitive experiences that changed the way Mark is today? Absolutely. Right. So what we wanna lean on, secondly, first, once you've identified your values, second is to find that definitive experiences, those definitive experiences will usually follow a pattern or there will be some experiences that are too similar to each other. And I'm gonna, I'm gonna project a little bit Mark. So, so if I have that liberty, I know, I don't know your full life story and we don't have the time to,

Mark Kerwin (34:55):
Yeah. And I, and I just got back from hiking with my best friend of, since I was two, since we were in the cradles together. So I have a 48 year relationship with him and we just, I just spent time with his kids

Coach Ajit (34:56):
Yeah. And I, and I just got back from hiking with my best friend of, since I was two, since we were in the cradles together. So I have a 48 year relationship with him and we just, I just spent time with his kids

Coach Ajit (36:04):
48 year old. 48 year friendship is unheard of in many ways. Right? And who wouldn't want a friend like that?

Mark Kerwin (36:14):
And we're not just like, right. I just went to their community kitchen where they're using a poem. I wrote 25 years ago as the main thing that people see when they come into that community kitchen. So it's like, we're still evolving as we're still motivating. He's bringing train from Banff or Calgary to Banff and doing development with native people. And we're still very much, it's weird. We always just keep bumping into each other and we're still giving and receiving from each other. So

Coach Ajit (36:43):
Yeah. So what, I'm what I'm hoping that we, we, there's a pattern that's forming and this may be just a pattern I'm reflecting on.

Mark Kerwin (36:51):
This is good. I never would've thought it might be others.

Coach Ajit (36:52):

Mark Kerwin (36:53):
It's it's I think it also has to do with loyalty.

Coach Ajit (36:55):
It might yeah. Could be, could be. So what we are really trying to do is we are trying to find that undertone, that undercurrent, that thing that is obvious, not so obvious in your life. It's like once you really sit down with it and say, what are those defining moments? What does it really say about my being? It'll give you a direction of travel now in congruence with your value in your direction of travel. Now, all we really wanna find, I mean, there are many other elements, but the thing that we can, if we can find is can we somehow related to a Market need. Because you know, it is, it could be about friendship. It could be about loyalty. It could be about relationship. It could be about any of those. It has to somehow show or integrate freedom into the model of teaching, because that would give you fire and would also also mean, and freedom is a big value for a lot of people.

Coach Ajit (37:45):
So it also aligns with value of your potential clients. Now, what we look for is can we make it profitable, right? Can we make it even if not profitable, at least sustained. So in time we can make it profitable, right? So even if it doesn't hit profit immediately, if at least you can generate revenue on it. Now, while we are talking about this guess where relationship is very important in a person's life, it's important for companies mm-hmm , they love loyalty, right? Because having a person work with you for 5, 10, 15, 20 years is a blessing that most company would really hope could happen today. Today, the relationships are more fragile than they have ever been in, in the world, right? Especially COVID caused a big ruckus for people who hadn't really invested time in their relationships.

Mark Kerwin (38:28):
Ruckus. That's a good word, right? It's a real Don my grandmother would say,

Coach Ajit (38:32):
I'm best friends with your grandma. Uh, our relationship has been 80 years, uh, our lifetime, uh, anyway, yet it, what I'm really trying to say is it is important, right? It's something that relationships have been shaken with the amount of time that we had been ended up investing with each other and spending with each other. And if you were not willing to do the work or you hadn't done the work, it would have been a problem. So it definitely did become a real problem for a lot of people. So that's another piece that we can lean into, which of course is another profitable piece. It could be that more people are single today than it has ever been because people are finding it hard to really build a relationship, right? Yeah. This is, this is, these are all true data and information. It's, it's, it's, it's not unheard of people are getting married late or they're not getting married, or they're not interested in getting married or even being in a relationship for long term because they fear it in some way or another right. Or their paradigm has shifted so much. They, they can't appreciate a relationship, uh, over a long period of time. Even if subconsciously they would really want one.

Mark Kerwin (39:34):
Yeah. And we all have cats and dogs, but we here, we're getting less and less human prints. You know, not the say anything wrong. I love my cat, my dog, but I still think there's value in human relationship too. You know,

Coach Ajit (39:44):
There's value. And some people know that there is value. They just don't know how to do it. They don't have the direction and guidance that one needs to be able to have a relationship like that. And it it's happening generationally after generation, because what previous generations knew about building and keeping a relationship, we tend to forget. Uh, and so we, we lose that traction. So there is a Market need for what you may have an opportunity with just that one dimension that we explored without really diving deep into your true capabilities. Now, what we really wanna do here, Mark is we wanna first, like we said, we found the value that was already congruent to you. Then we went ahead and looked for your life experiences. I wanna remind us so we know everybody who's listening as well. That it's not just a pick. The first thing that came to your mind, it's like saying, okay, which one?

Coach Ajit (40:32):
What are the different life experiences? Now you go and ask, is there a Market potential for this? Are there people trend-wise looking for an opportunity of growth in that area, that Market that is there availability. And once that happens, there are other questions to ask. The next question to ask is, do you have access to such a Market? Do you have access to people that may be interested in a relationship program or coaching? Do you have access to people or companies that may be looking to build loyalty with their team members and work with somebody who can guide them through it? The reason why access is so important is because when the rubber hits the road, we do wanna be able to see that there is some return on time invested, right? And one is of course the joy of coaching that is the first it return on time invested.

Coach Ajit (41:23):
But because we all have families and cats and dogs and visions of ourselves of doing things, we do want some financial backing there as well. Right? So if the, when the rubber hits the road and there's no money to be made, sometimes you may fall back into saying this doesn't work. Right? So it's important for us to also recognize that do I have access to people, places, organizations, groups, events, that I could generate real clientele in. So this coaching opportunity, this opportunity of me impacting the world also is rewarded by financial freedom for myself, right? So you wanna identify that. And if this test fails where you're like, oh, I don't have access to anyone or anything. You wanna look at the other opportunities that you had as well. And see if one of them has a chance for you to create financial freedom. And this is why it's so important. The context I was setting for why niche is a direction at the destination yeah. Is because you can change the direction if it's not financially rewarding. Right. But if you think of it as this is the definitive, right, then you're gonna find it so hard to change.

Mark Kerwin (42:30):
Well, here's the thing, real, estate's a trillion dollar industry all over the world. Everyone talks about real estate. Everybody, you just say real estate and people are like, what? Oh, you know? Um, and there's a lot of people in that Market and a lot of people have money. So I was even thinking like, I wrote this down while you were talking, finding stability and freedom in a changing chaotic world. That could be a, like a free meetup or something like that because people do want stability, but they do want their freedom that certainty and uncertainty parallel. And that's one thing I've been very good at finding is I do have these extremely long relationships with people, but, you know, had the chance to do everything I ever wanted to do. Really, you know, whether it was sleeping on a bus in Nepal or climbing in the Himalayas, or, you know, I went and did it and didn't have a lot of money

Mark Kerwin (43:16):
And, but along the way, I don't think there's anyone I've ever met that I haven't stayed in touch with. And that if I reached back to them, they're like really happy to hear from me. So I've had a really nice impact on the people I've met over a lifetime since I was a child. Like even my brother was like, remember I spilled my drink and you just gave me yours. When we went to see star wars in 77 and my other best friend was like, I remember we were in a race and I fell and we just waited for me. And you're like, you didn't give a shit about winning and you just wanted to hang out and cross the finish line together. So, and that was like, we still talk about that. No one knows who won that race. We won the race cuz we, you know, cuz of the way we chose to end it. So that's nice to actually hear me say that out loud. I think having been through a lot of

Coach Ajit (43:58):
That could be another direction. Right? Yeah. And that's, that's why knowing that niche to the direction is so important is because maybe the balance that you find that is most attractive to you that has some Market potential is freedom and stability at the same time, the, the contradiction and alignment of both of them and maybe that's the direction and the niche that you will start with. Now, the, now the key here is to know what's your number one factor that will make a niche work or not work for you. Right? Because what will happen again is like we said, we already discovered two different niches that you could get into. How do you choose, right? What's the determinant, what's the tiebreaker because there might be four or five for you, for other listeners as well that you need to define your tiebreaker. And you can define your tiebreaker even before you start doing this exercise.

Coach Ajit (44:46):
For example, the tiebreaker for me in today's situation of my life is it absolutely must serve my value. Right? It's love and service is my two primary freedom is my third most important value helping my fourth, most important value, right? So it needs to serve love and service. And if it doesn't do that, I am not interested. Right. I, I'm not gonna do it. Even if it makes me more money. Right. If I don't, if I don't feel the love, if I don't feel like I can do an of service, I don't wanna do it. Right. So that's my tiebreaker, right? You need a tiebreaker and the tiebreaker can be money. The tiebreaker can be impact. The tiebreaker can be size of community. The tiebreaker can be anything. It does not matter. It does not have to be our value. It just needs to be present to you that that's gonna break the tie because that is what most often than not causes us to not take action towards any of the niches that we find is because we think, but I would love to do this, this, this, and this

Mark Kerwin (45:41):
Can't do anything we stop.

Coach Ajit (45:44):
Yeah. Yeah. And we stop thinking about them as direction. We start thinking about them as this is what I will do for the rest of my life. That's not what you will do for the rest of your life. That's what you're gonna do until the job of that direction, that niche has served. And then you will find something else.

Mark Kerwin (45:58):
Yeah. I mean, does that make sense? We don't ever end our life is eternal. So I think getting to the heart of that transcend then loving service really doesn't matter what you do. Like as long as you're doing it with love, like you could just, I could spend the rest of my life sweeping the front porch and I'd probably give a bigger impact to the world. If I did that with pure love service, then all of the books and speeches and I've been around enough, SAS. I mean the original crack was that I grew up at five years old beside a Zen master who was my godfather. And when I would go to see him, sometimes he would be in a trance. He would be not, you would be in eternity. And I, I couldn't, I didn't have the languaging to describe what I was seeing, but I felt it like you, when you're in the presence of people that are doing that, then you, you feel it's like it is their auras bigger and it is palpable.

Mark Kerwin (46:44):
And so ever since then, there's, you know, then I was in Nepal when I was like 18 and I saw several (unidentified), you know, just their eyes were in eternity and you can't, that just blew my world apart. Like you can't go back after that. It's you're done. So the nice thing is that I, I, that's kind of what I wanted to help it spark with others is because, you know, once we get away from bodily identification, the, the root problem of every problem in the world is identifying the body. And the mind is self, right? The mind gets us down, all kinds of problems. Technology ahead of wisdom. The body has all these never ending desires, never ending desires and labels, lesbian, gay, straight, black, white, and any of those labels are describing a temporary object. That's actually dead by nature, but it's a very valuable tool and vehicle to be in while you're in it. It's not that I'm not criticizing the body, but you know, it does once you leave, it's sort of like, everyone's like, Ooh, get that thing, you know, put that thing in the burner there. Well, you it's stinking up the bed. Um, yeah, I think I gotta go back to volunteering at a hospice where I used to volunteer at a hospice. Just watching people leave all the time was, is very powerful.

Coach Ajit (47:53):
So, so with the niche that, that we've identified, we found the, the four determinants, the five determinants, at least in context of our conversation, Mark, and I would love for you to explore that further, uh, and see what really rings true for you and the direction that you wanna travel. And, and with that, at least we have had some direction to its firstly identifying why is it that you resist, uh, commitment to a thing or not

Mark Kerwin (48:17):
Here's thing? I think through our conversation, I've realized that I don't don't fear commitment at all. I'm very committed, actually, a very loyal and committed. Amazing. And actually I just do like having occasionally originality and, and uncertainty to help me remind me of how wonderful my certainty is and my stability. I think that's just very common in human beings actually. So

Coach Ajit (48:41):
That's beautiful.

Mark Kerwin (48:42):
Yeah, this is good.

Coach Ajit (48:43):
So that's a good realization. That's a good takeaway. It's huge is to even recognize that that's the thing that you think you don't have, like devotion is the word that you used is actually you do have it, you just seek some variety, which is a very different challenge to work with. Uh, not even challenge, just a different exploration to have versus trying to think that that's a hindrance. So that's beautiful. That recognition came to you. And then we also of course discussed how you could potentially look at identifying your niche. Uh, we, we covered some of the steps. Yep. Uh, we have a whole podcast episode that does cover how to identify your niche. I'll invite you to go listen. Yeah.

Mark Kerwin (49:18):
There may be a few more steps. Something else is.

Coach Ajit (49:21):
Yeah. Yeah. There are just a few more so you can, uh, listen to that and I'll send you the link for it. So you can identify that further, uh, that, and that, that wraps our conversation. At least from the point of view of the discussion that we wanted to have today. Isn't that great. Now, while listening in, you might have gotten curious as to, Hey, what is that podcast that you're talking about, Ajit, where you give further steps to finding an niche? Well, that's episode number 53. Go ahead and go to the Master Coaching with Ajit podcast on whatever podcasting platform you're listening this to, and go to episode 53. If you wanna get a full understanding of how to identify your niche and, and do those steps to find that niche that may finally be something that you will love, appreciate, be congruent to, and also find profitable.

Coach Ajit (50:10):
Thank you so much for tuning in today. This is Coach Ajit and you are listening to Master Coaching with Ajit. Hey, if you wanna join other amazing coaches like Mark into learning a very unique model that I have developed in partnership with my business partner, Vishen Lakhiani. Between me and Vishen, we've impacted hundreds of thousands of lives of individuals. And we are very interested in taking these methodologies, these models out in the world. So more and more lives can be impacted. If you feel congruent to what Mark was talking about, if you feel congruent to my work, this podcast, or Vishen's work, I invite you to check out Certified Life Coach. We are currently promoting enrollment into this program. You'll find a link below this podcast episode, so you can go ahead and find more information. I'll be looking forward to seeing you on Certified Life Coach.

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