Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and fitness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Steve Aish, Director of The Strength Academy Ltd, located in Christchurch, Cambridgeshire, UK.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My business is The Strength Academy Ltd, and I have just finished creating my signature coaching program - Train & Brain - physical fitness, fat loss, and mental well-being for those lost at sea and finally want to build solid health foundations for life and create independence.
Tell us about yourself
My fitness journey began at 10 with Taekwondo, and I did that for 26 years, teaching in London for 15 before moving after my master's degree. I have coached and competed in kettlebells and weightlifting and been fortunate enough to teach internationally and work with thousands of coaches and trainers. For the last 8 years, my specialist area was a mindset, as I realized this was having a much bigger impact than the training. After a year off from long covid and exhaustion, I realized how important mind and body are together and decided to combine my expertise into a program that will change thousands of lives.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I have been very fortunate to meet and work with incredible people. I have flown internationally to coach at the Olympic Village in Athens and work with the national weightlifting team and World Champions. I have spoken for Porsche and Deloitte at multiple conferences and about 20 podcasts. I have 4 British Championships as a masters weightlifter and still hold several British and Wold Records in all-around weightlifting. In terms of coaching - helping thousands of people to better understand their minds and suffering and begin a journey of awareness toward inner peace.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
I would say the loneliness and lack of true connection when you are an introvert. I have learned to wear a few extrovert hats to step up and stretch my confront zone, but when you dig deep, look at language, communication, non-verbal skills, and how much time we spend over a screen, you soon realize so much of a person is just not there in the online world. Lockdown added to this as so many people moved exclusively and the connection to a person was very different. I would also add the biggest killer of creativity and taking action in doubt.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- You most probably have enough knowledge to start and make an impact - doubt is stopping you from jumping as your brain loves safety and familiarity and avoiding risk. The paradox of our existence is the brain also grows from novelty, challenge, and adaptations to stress. The more you can heal and trust yourself, the sooner you will walk out into the unknown and embrace your true potential by creating your purpose and sharing your value.
- Most of your doubt, suffering, and pain will come from thinking. To realize this and ground yourself ask where your pain is coming from and look at the difference between what is playing in your mind and what is in your immediate environment. If your life is not in danger, then you have been hijacked and are reacting to the emotions generated by your inner studio. They have this impact because the brain treats everything as real, and this is why horror movies can terrify people. In life, we may not get a second chance, so caution is the default path we travel. Tell yourself a powerful statement you may have never heard - I am completely safe.
- You do not need confidence or motivation to start. I call this reverse causality, and it is like wanting to get fit before joining the gym. You get fit at the gym. Likewise, everything you think you need in order to step up and act will grow as a function of walking that path, learning from mistakes, gaining feedback and real-world experience that you will never get from a book, workshop, or course are how you become the person that is able to do the things you dream of. The path creates the person.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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