I am Phanice Shamalla, a Kenyan entrepreneur with a passion for helping people to become healthier in their lives.
My first job after graduation was Events Co-ordinator for the Kenya Medical Association. My job was end to end management of the 36th Annual Scientific Conference. So I was doing everything from calling of abstracts, marketing to sponsors and exhibitors, booking of accommodation and flights and all around ensuring everything is seamless.
My contract was only for 9 months, but even though the relationship ended, I fell in love. So I formed my own company and worked with many other medical professional associations.
That’s when I met what I thought was the prefect match. Surgical society of Kenya. The relationship lasted five years. Not only was I doing conference management, I also got involved in association management and fundraising and organizing surgical camps.
I was always fascinated with the scientific papers being presented. “Rise of toddler deaths due to choking”, The debate on why we had 20 oncologists for a population of 40 million, rise in lifestyle diseases and obesity.
Surely this information is not just for doctors but for non-medical people like me. I would like to know the perils of non-vaccination and not breast feeding for six months. That’s how the Health Festival was birthed. A fun two day event where the community can learn in a non-intimidating way how to begin or maintain a healthy lifestyle.
I did the first event in 2013 and we broke even. There was hope! 2014, we made a loss, 2015 an even bigger loss. This was not working out the way I had planned in my head. The same year I was pregnant with my first child. After emergency C-Section I got a stroke, and my right side collapsed, for eight months! Physiotherapy and other medical treatments completely wiped me out. My daughter was also a severe colic. It was so stressful and I became depressed. 2016 I went all out on marketing the festival. Hosted it in the newest mall, bought adverts on radio, bought influencers and adverts on healthy magazines. The flop was like a kick to my chest. Why didn’t people show up?
I went back to depression.
The worst was yet to come. 2017 I lost my sister abruptly and painfully. We were sitting laughing the whole day and in the evening she collapses. We rush her to hospital and that was the end. Just like that! She was my rock! She was everything to me! Why is this happening to me?
I couldn’t get out of bed. I did not want to live!
But bills have a way of waking up.
So at rock bottom it became clear that I had to start afresh.
I took a low paying job as a marketing executive to learn how to sell to consumers.
In this short period this is the lessons I have picked for you.
It’s not that serious. Unless you’re LITERALLY saving lives – it’s just not that serious.
Failure is part of the journey – get used to it.
Every job you’ve ever gotten was a demonstration of your ability to “sell” yourself.
Not to mention – every date you’ve ever been on…also “selling” yourself.
It’s never about YOU in sales.
The more people you talk to – the more money you’ll make.
If you’re “comfortable” – you’re selling yourself short.
Focus on results – not activity.
Find a mentor or someone that is further along in their journey than you to learn from. It will make a huge difference.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. You don’t know all of the answers – and that’s okay.
Ignore the haters. Even if they’re your family. Seriously. There will always be haters. Always.
It’s 100% true what they say about the people you spend your time with. Be mindful of those closest to you. This one is hard.
There is more than one right way to get things done. Do your best to focus on the results – not the tactics.
Time management is one of the most valuable skills you will ever learn.
Your network can make or break your success in business.
Trust your gut. Every. Single. Time.
Stop comparing yourself to other people. Just stop.
In fact, if you can’t observe other people’s journeys without negative emotion – then just STOP watching what other people are doing. You do you.
You are 100% in control of your results.
It’s okay to take a day off (this one is hard for me, too!)
Learn to say NO. Oh, and it’s also a complete sentence.
Treat people how you want to be treated.
Never stop learning. Ever.
You will always be your best investment. Every time.
Mindset is 100% more important than you think it is. If you’re not investing time and money into your BRAIN – you should be.
Whether you lead a team of people or not – position yourself as a leader. Be the example. Be the person that other people can look up to. Not only will it serve others – it will help you focus on being the best you can be.
Make time to focus on the BIG PICTURE stuff in your life and business. Don’t get so bogged down in the day to day that you’re not thinking 12 months, 3, 5, 10 years down the road.
Learn to delegate. It will NOT serve you to do it all yourself.
Just start. Stop planning. Stop thinking. Stop strategizing. Just start.
Stop saying you’re a perfectionist. You’re afraid. And that’s 100% okay. But call it what it is.
You should probably always be a little afraid – if you’re making big leaps, chasing your dreams, and going after your big goals.
Life is too short. If what you’re doing doesn’t fill you up – do something else. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been doing what you’re doing. It’s never too late.
Stop believing your own excuses. They aren’t serving you. And most of the time, they aren’t even real.
You will never be able to sell something you don’t believe in. Including yourself.
Regardless of your business and your role – your success is tied directly to your ability to connect with people emotionally. Remember – we buy based on emotion and justify with logic.
CELEBRATE your wins. The small ones. The big ones. All of them.