Ajit Nawalkha on Clarity, Power & Follow-through
Marni: [00:00:41] All right. So today on the entire life summit, I have somebody I respect a lot in the coaching industry, Ajit Nawalkha. Why don't you tell us a little bit about where you started, like [00:01:00] from the very beginning and where you are today and how that's giving you the life that you've been able to have.
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:01:08]
Thank you, Marni. First of all, thank you for inviting me to your summit. I'm very excited to be here. My journey started many years ago in; I was born in a small town in Indian called Jaypor. It's a beautiful town survey, touristic town, but did the way I grew up.
I grew up with 23 other people sharing the same space, so we weren't very abundant per se. I lived in what is called a joined family in India, but. Even bigger than a joined family because even my grandparents, brothers, and everybody shared the same space, which is why we ended up as 23 people at the same house, which meant that there was definitely not a lot of abundance in my life.
And that, kind of early on, got me triggered two words, asking myself the question, how could I have better life now? Most people in India, I'm sure it is hair as well. And globally, it's a phenomenon. Everybody says, Hey, get [00:02:00] educated, and you can get out of your siituation, you know, and that was kind of the same thing that we heard, is a, become an engineer or become a doctor, become an accountant.
Now I was not poor in my studies, but I wasn't, like, I was just an average student. There was nothing phenomenal about my ability to. You know, study or cram things in my brain or anything like that. So I, early on knew that I can try, which is what I did do. I tried to become an engineer, but soon realized as my education towards, trying to become an engineer started, I was like, this is not something that I want to do for the rest of my life.
And so it took the brave step calls. My dad asked to speak to him by a letter, not even physically, because I was that scared about taking that action because. I was like a teenage kid. Right. so like that, I really don't think this is for me. I want to try something else. You had already put in a lot of time effort in the course money in my education at that time.
So it was a big decision, but [00:03:00] he took it like a champion told me he's, he's happy to let me try things, but his good, he gave me a three-year ultimatum. He was like, listen, I do want you to graduate somewhere. It doesn't matter. It would be just a commerce or arts degree or whatever, but it was easy enough for you to figure it out what you want to do, but get a graduate degree.
At least I feel like. You at least got educated and became a graduate. So he was like, at least do that. And while you're doing that takes three years, but that's all I got for you, because after that I don't have money to put in your business or I don't have money to, you know, fund further education.
I just don't have it. So I don't, I want to be very clear and be really like, clear about this. And that kind of got me really early on to go out in the world with the intention of saying. What am I creating on myself? Because I was in my late teens, basically trying to figure out what career I want to create with not necessarily following any protocol that the world suggests you to do.
I said no to [00:04:00] education already. So the protocol they, I was broke and I didn't have connections, so that could work. I wasn't particularly. Intelligent or smart, or at least that, you know, considered in school. I think I'm smart and intelligent, but in school, you know how the school grading system rates here, I think it has become slightly better now, but it used to be terrible before it used to be all about rankings and everything was good marks in India.
It does not even grade you get like marks, so you will know exactly the digit and how behind you are. So. It was kind of terrible. So I never thought. And I was like, okay. So basically I'm not that intelligent because I'm not getting the grades. So I was like, I don't know, I'll, I'll figure something out. And that got me really early on to experience a lot of things.
So I started doing part-time jobs that would take like gigs that. But just curious to me, like, I was just like, Oh, that sounds interesting. Like, I would take a gig in, education, based, centers where kids would go off to school to take extra classes. I would take gigs [00:05:00] there and learn how they really ran the business.
And. What I can do to support education structured there. So I was always excited about education media. That has always been the case I've always been ever since I was a teen; I've always been excited about it. So that got me started really early in the field of education. And then. Few years then I joined a sort of an organization did really well at that organization with also education and training based, from there moved on, became a top salesperson in the media company in India.
So, so good at what I was doing that I was, I was able to get investment from that company to do a tech startup right there, which didn't work out because it was a social media channel. I was trying to build while Facebook was entering the marketplace. So some early hits on failures there.
And, and then I found this little company called MindValley at the time. It was a startup for a few years. And that's how it was a tiny company with like 10, 15 employees maybe. And, and yeah, this was just a tiny startup at the time [00:06:00] and joined the company and. It was just like perfect storm, like really built the company out within partnership, of course, the founder Vishen, and really built it out, created many sub-companies as a part of that project.
Sold some of them created, some of them spun off some of them, and, and basically went on from an intern in MindValley to the CEO of the company. So I was the CEO of the company for a year and a half, and then from there, it, my life had taken a different turn at that time. So I decided that I needed something more and something different for myself.
And, that got me excited to create the platform ever coach, which is the platform that I now co-own with MindValley. So MindValley is a partner in that platform and I have other companies that I've started ever since. And this is in the past five years. I've rarely ventured out completely on myself, but of course, partnerships with the right kind of people are coaching the right kind of companies consulting the right kind of companies, just being really passionate and doing work that I really enjoy.
And that's really where I am right now.
Marni: [00:06:59] It's so [00:07:00] important. It's so important. I remember, I went to one of your, one of the very first actually I think it was the very first Evercoach. event that you guys ever had.
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:07:13] five years ago. That was when we started Evercoach. Yeah,
Marni: [00:07:16] exactly. Exactly. And I've been following you ever since, and I'm like, well, if I'm doing this, I have to have him.
And by the way, Jessica and Adam, who I interviewed today, Adam Gilad and,
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:07:34] yeah, you're talking about Jessica Nazrali. Okay.
Marni: [00:07:39] Jessica Geist Yeah. Yeah. I interviewed her a couple of weeks ago now and yeah, Adam, I interviewed today, so that was, and he, he said specifically say hi to Ajit for me.
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:07:50] Absolutely. He lives right out here.
He lives in Topanga if I'm not wrong. Yeah.
Marni: [00:07:54] Yeah. Yeah. Beautiful, beautiful place. Gotta love it. Love it. [00:08:00] So I know that you probably have a lot to share with us with regards to clarity. So tell us, how do you get clear on what's important to you?
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:08:13] I think clarity is. So, I have a whole process of getting really, really clear about what I do, but it always starts with the first step being really clear about where you want to go, not on the short term, but on the long term.
I feel a lot of times we, as people tend to think in the immediate future and the immediate future doesn't really give us the space that it needs to create something that's phenomenal. I feel when you're thinking about something that's immediate future, you always react to the situation and never really create.
For the future and so the first step to finding absolute clarity in life is to really take a dive towards understanding where you want to go, who you are and where you want to go and why you want to go there. So again, one of the [00:09:00] common mistakes that I've seen is people will write down really big ideas of where they want to go.
Yeah, I want a house. I want the car, I want this. I want that. But there was no why associated to it. And what happens is, what we don't understand, what most people don't understand is that while your rationale and fact is something that is what, besides the vision almost sometimes what's your daily direction or your daily compass is your emotions.
Right. So while you're North star is kind of established by, I want the money. I want the fame. I want this. I want that. Your compass everyday compass is reacting to what's happening around you. Don't have a strong enough reason to go to your final destination. You will tend to lose direction every day because your compass will keep moving up and down.
Right. You didn't know your why associated to it. So there's no emotion behind your final destination. And that's why you need the why because why calibrates it.[00:10:00] Why kind of goes, "okay, Even if there was an motion happening, my, why will always realign, the compass. To go to the outcome that I'm trying to get to. Right.
And that's why you need the compass. That's why you need that emotional balance and that's why you need the why. So not only set the vision out, but actually write why that vision is important. And that is also a great exercise in actually eliminating a lot of things that you think are important to you, but are not important to you.
Like the car has never been important part. It's just a way to get recognized in the way that you feel like you will feel recognized. Right? Yeah. Now two things will happen. One, you will say it doesn't matter. I want that recognition. I still want the car and that's fine because now, you know, your, why your, why is recognition, right?
And that is a good compass to get your emotions, to move towards that direction because you know what you're chasing, right. It's right or wrong is, is up to the person I'm not going to critique or judge that. But even if that's your compass, that's your compass and go for it. Right. But what will also happen is sometimes you can go, Oh, it is for recognition.
Is [00:11:00] recognition really important to me, or do I just want to be accepted? And if I want to be accepted, there are many better ways than to get the car, right. You could create a better impact in society. You can show up in a different way. You can show up for people when nobody else would show up. All of that will make you more accepted.
If you want that to be outcome. Right. If you want to build a community, you might do certain other things, whatever that is. But your why is going to be that compass that will help you either eliminate some of the goals that you may set yourself up to, or make better, a lot of goals that you may set yourself up to.
So clarity is a lot about that. Clarity is a lot about not only knowing where you're going, but why you're going there.
Marni: [00:11:36] Yup for sure. And so carrying on from that, how about power? Or we could say willpower, as you know, as business owners, we all have those days where we're like, Oh my God, this isn't working.
Why am I doing this second, guessing myself, how do you [00:12:00] find the willpower to carry on? Especially in those times when it's difficult.
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:12:05] So I have a different philosophy of willpower. So I don't think willpower really is. It's like motivation, willpower, motivation. Don't really last. They're not necessarily the way to success.
They're not the way to create a great life. And the reason is the same, right? Because like motivation will power has the tendency to go up and down. It's almost like it's like fueling your car. And the petrol has gone run out of the gas is going to run out at some point and then you have to go and refill it.
Right. So one way of living life is constantly refilling the car. A second way of going about life is to create the car in a way that it automatically feel to itself right now that could be taken. If I had to give an example, let's say your car is run by the sun, right? Because sun's always there every time you go out in the car, it refuels itself.
And hence you never have to go to the gas station. Right? So willpower and motivation [00:13:00] is almost like having a gas car, having to constantly go back and refill it. And having something that is beyond willpower motivation, which is your process to operate. Right. It sounds a little engineer. Like, it sounds a little mechanical, but if you really think about, about how you operate as a human being, you're always operating out of a process and there's a process.
How you like your coffee to be made. There is a process how you like to brush your teeth. There's a process how you like. To draw your bath. There's a process to everything that you do. And if your processes are strong around areas that get you to motivate and work towards you will never have the problem of full power.
You'll never have the problem of motivation on you had a question.
Marni: [00:13:45] Other speakers, he mentioned about having passion in the process, because if you don't have passion in the process, you're not going to enjoy yourself. And that's interesting. That's how that [00:14:00] connects.
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:14:00] Yeah true to some degree; again, passion is fickle.
So you need to know what passion really means. If you are going to associate passion to a process that has passion. Great. It is great. If you can collaborate it, but a lot of times passion is misunderstood in itself, and I can go on tangents and we can talk really, because I've actually done deep study about all of these things because that's, that's human engineering, right.
That's what we are. And that's kind of. What makes us or doesn't make us right? The passion becomes fickle as well. Most of the time passion is also is something that can dwindle way, because passion is something that you get passionate about. You can get passionate about a topic, and then you can lose passion on that topic.
If you're proven otherwise. Right. The passion is good. It's great. You need to have passion. I am in no way discounting passion. Right. But if you're relying yourself on passion to create results, there, there is going to be a problem there too. You have to associate, like you said, if you associate a process to passion, it may work [00:15:00] better.
Right. But by process, I didn't mean, Oh, come up with a mechanical process. That's not what I'm meaning by process of processes is anything that is your system to get back to. Right. So say, for example, if you are feeling like, Oh, I don't feel like working today. What's your process for it? Right? What happens when you don't feel like working today?
What goes in your mind? How are you thinking. Yeah. How do you come back on, right? Or what is the process that you would not do without fail? It's almost like asking this question. If I said, Hey, listen, I'm not feeling passionate about eating today. Would you not eat? You'll just order out or something.
Right. If you don't feel like cooking you a lot of food in, right? You don't forget about those because those are part of your processes, right? If you can create processes around things that really matter are meaningful to you. And that's where the answer of the why is so important that I talked about.
Yeah. Like why are you choosing your version? Right. And then it doesn't have to be external. It can be very internal. So don't worry about it. I need to save the world with my, with my vision is that's what I [00:16:00] did suggesting. Now, if you don't need to, don't need to, it's fine. There's nothing wrong with that.
You don't have to beat yourself on it. If it is associated with external, purpose. It's great. But if it's not, don't beat yourself on it. Right. but what I do want you to think about is to think about how will you come back to, how does the game mode gets back on right. Once it's kind of dwindling away.
Right. And so the process and the process is sometimes very, fun. Like for example, when I'm not feeling motivated to write and I like to write, and I have a process to writing, right. Let's say I'm sitting in front of the paper and I'm like, how could I have, I don't feel like writing today. I have a process to get back into action.
I have a process that sets me back into the mood, because again, remember. What has it been? You're not feeling will power or what, what do you think happens when you don't have motivation? It's basically a bunch of emotions coming together, having you feel the other way. Right. And like I said, and like we talked about previously, emotions are nothing.
They are basically data points. [00:17:00] They're basically telling you what things are not working.
So if you know, Hey, listen, What's happening right now is this is not working, whatever this is, right. This is, these are the set up. I ate too much bread and now I don't have motivation because I feel like sleeping. Well, next time, your process should be don't eat bread. Not that much, maybe eat bread, but not as much.
Marni: [00:17:24] how our physiology often affects our emotions.
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:17:29] Yeah, physiology affects biology. A hundred percent physiology, absolutely affects biology and still do external circumstances, events that are happening outside of our control. Oh, we are cooped up in the house when we are recording this, we are all couped up in the house being six weeks in California, that'd be a, not left the house or had social interactions.
We're five weeks, something like that. I've lost count, but it's been a while. Basically this is an external circumstance that can completely change your internal world. Now, if that happens, it is your [00:18:00] responsibility and your processes, responsibility to say, how will I navigate every single day? Because if you don't, it will compound by day five day, seven day 13, it'll compound.
It needs to be tackled every single day. You got to have your process.
Marni: [00:18:13] Believe it or not, through this, March six, I got infected with coronavirus, March 13th. I went, Friday the 13th. I went into the doctor and yes, you have coronavirus. And you know, through that whole thing every day that I was feeling good, I worked on this summit.
And I was really committed to getting this done. So I know exactly what you're talking about. You have a process to get yourself back on track and believe me, you know, I slept for two weeks and it was really a lot to get back on track, but yeah, absolutely. I, [00:19:00] 100% agree with you. Yeah. And so what about follow through?
So for instance, let's talk about, you've got the, the clarity, you've got the power now. And so what structures do you put in place to have the follow through on your commitments?
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:19:19] So I have, it depends on what kind of commitments you're making, right? So some commitments that auto tuned, because if let's say you are, and again, it depends on the people that you're working with and the people that are listening.
If you have team members, you can cross, you can cross a make responsible cross accountability. Sorry. That's what I was trying to say. Where as much as they're your team members and you kind of hold them responsible, they can hold you responsible. Because again, it's, it's one of those things. It's accountability self-accountability is the best, but it doesn't always work.
Right? Because again, if there's not strong enough why associated to you, it is one of the subconscious beliefs that always get you [00:20:00] back on the back foot. And you're not able to. Like really push yourself through and you're not able to really create that change that you want to, you need external accountability, right?
Accountability. That's the best. Right? So if you set yourself up with a calendar or scheduling, which, by the way, I say, for example, in business, if I have to give you about business accountability, a way we do accountability and get ourselves to follow through is we know our plans three months out. Yeah.
So we know exactly what's happening in business from now until three months from now. Right. And we know that whole year plan, but we know exactly date by date five, three months later. Right. And because we know date by date, what happens is every team member kind of is defaulted into a responsibility and default into an accountability of tasks delivered. Right? And that also becomes cross because whenever there is a cross accountability where somebody has to do something first for somebody else to be able to deliver that task, the tasks are so mutually connected that you can very easily hold it to the responsible. Now, if it's personal [00:21:00] life, You can do that with your partner.
You can do it with like me and my wife, Neetah. We both hold each other accountable to certain things that we have said we'll hold each other accountable to we've put processes and systems in place for us to be able to work together in a way where say for example, every, every relationship has arguments and debates, right?
And that happens in our relationship too. We get into arguments, we get into debates, we get into fights, but we have a process to get out of it. Yeah, right. So there's, there's a way to say, okay. One of us, whoever catches it first, so it's a mutual accountability. Whoever catches it for us, that we are in, we are in it because when you're in it, you can see it.
Right. It's it's just been getting mad at each other. That's all it is. Right. But. Whoever catches it first has a catch phrase. We say the phrase and that for the other person becomes immediate accountable, or just snap out of it and say, if you need to shelf this and we need to talk about it when they emotions are not flooded.
Right? So you, you want to find that process. And I, I know what I'm saying, the word process a lot here [00:22:00] today. coincidentally, probably because the end of the day, and I was talking to my, some of my clients earlier today and we were talking about processes, but basically there's there's systems to fall back on and accountability.
Like we said follow through is about setting up something and saying, Oh, this is what I have and made a commitment. It also depends by the way on how your commitment works. Right? Because some people are driven towards that. If they say I will do something, they will do it. Like there's people like that.
And there's people where they need to tell somebody that they are going to do this. And then they will do it just personality.
Marni: [00:22:32] Right. They feel like they need to do it. Yeah,
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:22:35] absolutely. That's the personality type. So if you know what your personality type is like, I'm somebody who, if I say I'll do something, I will do it.
Nobody needs. Right. That's
Marni: [00:22:45] why this summit happened.
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:22:46] Yeah. Okay. There are people and there might be listeners right now who don't feel like that's them. They need somebody else to remind them. I would say, make somebody responsible for things on your calendar and invite friends into the calendar. Invite, [00:23:00] invite other colleagues, people who may be in the same profession and say, Hey, let's create a cross accountability have team members look at that. if you feel that's not happening in personal life and like your partner and that your friends in it, whatever that is. But if you would schedule it in a way where somebody else is looking at it, and if that's your way to get action, do that. Right. So you got to find what's your personality and what works.
And then get people involved. If you need to, if you're personally responsible enough that you will do it and not cheat, because I know a lot of times when people say they're personally responsible, they cheat a lot as well, because they know nobody's watching. That's that's for you to kind of make that judgment is to see if you're cheating and you've got to put some measures in place for yourself.
So when you cheat, you get kind of. Punished, but so punish the wrong word, but you have the consequence where you go back into your team, whatever. Yeah.
Marni: [00:23:55] Yeah. I catch
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:23:59] something [00:24:00] that catches it. Yeah, yeah.
Marni: [00:24:01] Yeah. That totally makes sense. And by the way, don't worry about using processes because the whole purpose of this summit is to introduce the app that I'm creating called the EntireTask.
Around all of this. And so everything that you're saying, just totally lines up with it a hundred percent. So thank you so much for coming on today. And is there anything that you would like to give to our audience today or direct them to something in particular of yours?
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:24:38] I have not planned for any of that.
We have a few books. If you want to go check it out, you can go to emotionalgrit.com. That's the book on managing emotions better by my wife, Neetah. If you are a coach, you should check out the book of coaching at thebookofcoaching.com. You can check out that book. if you are [00:25:00] more focused with building a business around your coaching practice, you can go to thebusinessbookofcoaching.com and you can get the business of coaching.
Those are some of our books that are out in the market right now that you can check
Marni: [00:25:09] out. I will make sure to put a link to all of those. At the end of this speech here. So thank you so much for your time today. And it's been a real pleasure having you
Ajit Nawalkha: [00:25:22] on. Absolutely. Thank you very much for letting me.
To use Ajit's system in EntireTask
So at the beginning Ajit says that you need to get clear about where you are going in the long term. The best way to do this in EntireTask is to start by creating your vision for each area of your life. You want to write your vision as if absolutely nothing were holding your back. Don't be afraid to ask the universe for what you want. You will be surprised at it's response.
Ajit also said that knowing your why is really important, for this you will want to add images to your vision board. Make sure that they are emotional so that they can become your daily compass. I find it's easiest to stay on track by starting my morning ritual by looking at my vision board every day. Additionally, when you select the importance of each area of your life, EntireTask can help keep you on track to what is really important to you in your life and business.