Alignment, Money, Human Design and ditching the “should’s” with Whitney Catalano

I had the honour of interviewing Whitney Catalon. She is an intuitive success and alignment coach. And together, we got to talk about

  • how she went from working as a dietician to doing what she does now
  • How she built a business model that works for her
  • the methods that she uses for her, with her own clients to create the same thing. Spoiler alert, this includes what she calls “mini-experiments”
  • the first step in building a business that genuinely works for you
  • How she organizes her business and schedule as a creative with ADHD and how she’s able to go with the flow
  • money mindset and how money really is the foundation to create a life and a business that you love. And obviously talking about what are the things that you can do for yourself regarding your own money mindset

So without further ado here is the conversation that I had with Whitney.

Okay. Hi Whitney. How are you doing today?

Good. How are you?

I’m pretty good too. So I just wanna thank you for, uh, giving you some of your time and hopping on a call with me. Like I’m honestly so excited to be chatting with you. Um, and it’s a really big honor to have you on the podcast today.

Cool. I love that. but yeah, I’m happy to be here.

Okay. So for those who don’t know you, can you, can you introduce yourself?

Sure. I’m still trying to figure out how I introduce myself, but what I’ve been going with recently is, um, I’m an intuitive success in alignment coach. At least for people who are in the industry.

I tell them that for people outside the industry, I’m like, I’m a life and business coach. Like I Don. How specific do you want me to get? But totally I am an intuitive, um, success and, you know, alignment coach, meaning that I help people figure out what it is that lights them up, help them create lives that light them up. I’ve been doing a lot of work around like confidence as well, a lot of emotional healing stuff because it’s really about figuring out who you are and then how to express that in your career and in your life and like allowing yourself to really go against what society taught you to be, or break out of the boxes and the limitations that you were once in, in order to, you know, fully step into yourself and embrace it.

Shit. I love that. That’s awesome. How did you get there? How did you figure out that’s what you wanted to do? How did you get to this point?

Great question. Um, yeah. How did I get to the moment? basically I, so I used to be a dietician and, um, I was working in like food, freedom and body image healing.

So kind of like the disordered eating realm of things. And I got really, really successful at it really quickly. It took a while for me to get going. Once I started getting going, I got really good at it really quickly. And I made a name for myself really quickly. And then I got a book deal and, um, I was writing this book and I was like, just really struggling to write it.

Like I was getting so frustrated and I just couldn’t like bring myself to write it, do it. Yeah. And the pandemic hit and I pushed the book back like a. And then I just ended up quitting the book because I was like, I don’t know why I just can’t do this and I don’t wanna force it. And then I ended up just burning my whole business down at the beginning of the pandemic.

I mean, I definitely was having like a little bit of an episode, I think. But like a really good one you know, like it was chaos, it was absolute chaos. And a lot of people are looking at me like, are you okay? Like you don’t seem okay. And I was like, no, I’m fine. I’m just losing my mind. But I’m fine.

But it was good because I burned my business down and then I started just figuring out like what I wanted to do and I, yeah, over the past year and a half or so, I’ve tried on not over the past year and a half ever since like April of 2020. I have tried on every version of what I wanted to do under the sun.

Did many pivots, like 10 different times. I’d launch a group program and I’d be like, oh, I really like this. And then I’d completely abandon it, launch a new group program and be like, oh, I really like this, whatever. And through that, I was really experimenting with what kind of work I like to do. What kind of people do I like to work with? What do I like to talk about and what kind of business model works best for me? Because your business model is like everything in terms of how you manage your energy, how you show up every day, and how your skills are best used. I didn’t realize that before I pivoted. The business model that I had created originally just like was not working for me at all

When you were still working as a dietician?

Yeah. It was like, there were aspects of it that did work really well. And then there were aspects of it that were burning me out so fast. I got to this place. It’s kind of funny because when I first pivoted, I had an idea that I wanted to work in like purpose and alignment and success and just helping people kind of figure out like what makes them happy in life, because that’s what I felt like I was doing was like abandoning what wasn’t making happen, making me happy anymore. And then shifting into what is right. But I had to do like 10 twists and turns to come back around to it. So now we’re back to it.

I love that. And yeah, just to come back to your point, I worked in the health industry for many, many years, and I feel like one of the biggest issues with it and is they don’t really teach you about the business side of things.

I feel like often it’s assumed as you learn the material that you’re just going to work in a clinic or in an office setting where other people are going to take care of the business and admin, the marketing. And therefore you have to offer your services in a very structured way. They’re going to tell you what you have to sell, what your packages are. The moment you try to do your own thing, whether that’s as a dietician or in health, or even like doing something else, it’s like, you never really learn to figure that out for yourself. I dunno if that’s something that you resonate with.

So the thing that was weird for me was that I ended up. And I think what I was subconsciously looking for was something that fit me better. But the way that I went about it because I didn’t know anything going into starting a business was that I joined like 10 different business coaching programs. Like I have worked with everyone. If there’s a business coach that you know of like I’ve probably worked with them or worked with someone who is close to them who teaches a similar model to them.

It’s actually mind-boggling how much money I’ve spent on business coaching in the past, like four years or five. Five and a half, I guess. So when I first pivoted, I felt like uniquely equipped to kind of jump into business coaching first. Because I was like, no, you have no idea how much I’ve learned that I’ve not been able to use for myself. I don’t know if that. Um, answered your question or addressed what you were saying, but that was my experience.

Aligning your business model

Totally. Thank you. Yeah. And so when you mentioned, like you had to figure out what kind of business model works, like what specifically in terms of business model, do you feel like was, the most important for you to figure out or that when you work with clients, you feel are like the biggest things to dig into and to align.

Yeah, well so what’s really funny about the work that I do with business- because okay. I have two different sections of one-on-one clients that I have. I have business coaching clients. I have a pretty strict rule now that I only take business coaching clients who have been in business for a while, because…

They know what they’re looking for, know what the issues are, know themselves and you’ve got data to work with to some extent.

Well that, and they have experienced success already in their business. I got into some hot water working with some business coaching clients last year who had not experienced success yet and were looking at me to kind of solve that for them. And I was like, oh, I forgot how long this can take at the beginning. And I just can’t. I’m really good at helping people pivot and refine but not like getting the ball rolling right from the beginning. Getting the ball rolling is so hard, like there’s no way to predict it for anyone.

If anyone’s in business right now and you’re like, why is the ball not rolling in my business? Because you can’t predict it. Like it will happen. You just kind of have to keep throwing shit at a wall and seeing what works. And then once you figure it out, once something sticks, then you can refine.

And that’s when I can come in and be like, okay, something’s stuck. Right? So let’s like match you with it.

I have business coaching clients, and then I have like life coaching clients who are becoming confident coming out of their shell, like changing the course of their life, you know, working on their habits, blah, blah, blah.

For business coaching, the big things that I look for, and the funny thing that happens is that people come to me and they tell me (this is like the biggest thing I hear) “Whitney, I either don’t wanna do one-on-one coaching, or I don’t wanna do group coaching”. These are the top two complaints.

Which we see sold like everywhere. Depending on who you talk to, it is one or the other that’s going to be the end-all-be-all of your business solutions of guaranteed success, of 10 K months in three months or whatever you wanna call it.

Which is kind of valid, right? Because it’s like, if you are a coach – let’s say you don’t wanna do one-on-one coaching. It’s not your, not your vibe, not your jam. I actually do recommend those people, even if it’s not for them long term, I do usually say you should do some one-on-one coaching because it will, you’ll develop a formula that then you can translate into groups.

You’ll get feedback from the clients. You get to know what you like. You get to get testimonials and build your expertise. Get the confidence so greatly get started.

But do it for the experience of that. Don’t do it because you think that this is gonna be your business model forever. And then you’re secretly dying inside totally. With group programs, I had a client one time who did a business coaching program and the business coach had her set up like an entire evergreen, like a rolling admission group program for her stuff. She came to me and she was like “I don’t know how else to say this, but I don’t want evergreen. I don’t wanna do this. I hate this model. I don’t even wanna have group coaching. This feels so hard. It’s exhausting. I never get a break from it”.

Because like evergreen is, it takes a unique kind of person to be able to continue to do something the same thing in the same-ish way. And it really works for some people. It really does not work for others.

A lot of my job is being like, okay, then I’m going to be here and I’m going to give you the permission you’ve been looking for. Just don’t do it then. That’s cool. I’m cool with that. How do you feel? And they’re like “really?”. Everyone’s always so relieved and I’m like, okay, I’m teaching you that you have to give yourself this permission and then let’s figure out. How else do you wanna structure your business in order to keep money coming in?

But like the first step is just. I don’t wanna do this.

It’s admitting it to yourself to be able to open your mind to what else is out there? What else is possible? What else can I do?

Exactly. And then you just get to get creative with it because it doesn’t take long for me to talk to someone. I can talk to someone in like five minutes, 10 minutes and find out really quickly what they don’t like in their business. Then I’ve got (the way that I describe it to potential clients on sales calls) is that I have this like Rolodex of like business stuff in my head. I never get to use any of it because I have a very specific way that I go about business.

It’s just this Rolodex. When someone’s feeding me information, I have like a little person in my head just like flipping through and being like, well, what about this? And like, oh, well I saw this one time because I just like study people online. So I saw this and I saw this and like what, what if we put these two things together?

Does that sound good? And they’re just like, yeah, let’s try it. And so we just try it. We see but like, it’s fun.

Do you wanna give us some like specifics as to what that looks like, or some of the ideas that you’ve created like that, or just suggestions?

Um, okay. Yeah, what’s one what’s one recently…

Well, okay. For example, I’m working with a client right now who she really wanted to get out of the one on ones. She’s amazing at courses, not even group programs, courses. We were just trying to figure out what her funnel would be around her course so that she could continue to sell at evergreen.

Because she doesn’t like launching either like same. I could, I would be so happy to never launch again. So we did that. We basically like looked at the course and then we broke down. Like what, in this course is a course, what, in this course are bonuses. Pulled them out, and figured out the funnel that she was gonna do.

So right now we’re working on ads and like, I’m not, I’m not an ad person. And she knows that, but I understand how people buy, like I understand human behavior. So we’re kind of just like, again, throwing spaghetti at a wall and seeing what sticks. And then she had this like secondary course that was a lower cost offer.

So I was like, okay, why don’t we position that as like a, a bump afterwards and to add on. So she went from selling like $400 per sale to now she’s up to like $600 per sale because the way that it’s designed. It meets a need at every stepand she was like, I never would’ve thought to like put these things the way that they are.

It’s kind of just marketing or it’s like, uh, sales psychology, like that’s really what it is, but the way that we put it together and also just the fact that you know, her entire business now funnels into these courses as opposed to funnelling into one-on-one coaching.

It’s just tweaks. Like that’s what I do. It’s like we just tweak it and we’re like, okay, well what’s the end goal? The end goal is to get out of one-on-one coaching and have a stable income coming from your courses. Then how are we gonna go about doing that? So it’s not particularly creative. It’s just more like … I mean, I guess it’s creative, but it’s not particularly like coming up with new things. It’s just like making it work for you.

No. And like you said, I feel like it just, you need to have this bank of options. I find that’s often where people get stuck is like, they know, you know, some things are working, some things aren’t, but it’s like they just don’t know what else they can do. They’re just looking online. People are just marketing, like specific ways to create content specific ways to sell specific things to sell. And it’s like, But what else can I do?

Running a business with ADHD

Through your content, you also often talk about your own experience, having ADHD and working with creatives. And so what’s been your experience having a business as someone with ADHD and someone, as a creative and someone who works with other creatives for years?

My experience has been really interesting because I’ve always worked with people who like don’t fit into society in a certain way. Back when I was doing food, freedom and body image stuff like I was really into fat activism. I mean, still am, but I was really into fat activism. I worked with, I just always attracted people who like didn’t, don’t fit into society in traditional ways and don’t fit the mould in some regard.

Now, that’s translated to people who don’t take well to the regular business advice and don’t work in the same way that a lot of people in the entrepreneur space work. Which is like, get up at 5:00 AM and like do all your work and all this stuff, you know? It’s just not, it’s not for us. So I mentioned that or I decided to start advertising the fact that I’m working with ADHD people, but I actually didn’t change a lot about my content other than just explicitly saying it. Because I’ve always kind of worked with ADHD people.

You know what I mean? Like I knew, but I didn’t know, but I think it’s just people… The way that I describe it is just people with creative brains. People who need to really design their day in a unique way and are not going to respond well to the more sort of structured routine way of going about things.

Organization, routine and human design

Totally and like when it comes to like organizing your day what are the tools you usually recommend? Or what are the tips you usually give when it comes to helping people with that?

So I use human design. I don’t know. Are you familiar with human design at all?

Yes. I love human design.

Routines or no routines?

Me too. So one of the things I always look at in someone’s chart is I look at their will – if they have a defined or undefined will or heart center. Because that’ll tell me, like, can you handle routines? I have an undefined will. I’m not a routine girl at all. You can also look at the arrows at the top. Like the top four arrows will give you a lot of information. I’m less educated on those, but yeah. I know the basics, so really quickly I’ll look at someone. If someone is routine driven or not, then I’ll just kind of like pick apart. Okay. So how are you trying to force yourself to do things?

Because so many ADHD people,

I find there’s only cert a certain subtype of ADHD that like really does well with routine.

Doc Amen is an expert ADHD researcher and he talks about one of the subtypes being this type of ADHD that hyper focuses and cannot get out of the hyperfocus. Like they become…

It’s almost like an obsessive type of ADHD. Those are the people that I find do really, really well with routine and structure, because they do get like very obsessed and absorbed. But their routine has to like allow for a ton of uninterrupted time.

I say those bursts where you get to go all in, but where you also kind of cut off time where you’re able to break away and take care of yourself and do the other things whether it’s in your business or your personal life.

Exactly. So with those people, I tend to, like, we talk a lot about integrating self-care. We talk a lot about taking days off. That’s one of my clients right now. And so for her getting away from one-on-ones was really about her being able to have that uninterrupted focus time without having to then switch and go talk to a client or whatever.

She’s like, “I don’t wanna keep switching. I hate it”, “I just wanna be absorbed in what I’m doing”. I could not be more opposite. I am like the up in Lala land. Like, so what, what is it called? The inattentive type. I’m off in the fricking weeds. Like I am in the clouds, I’m a Libra.

I’ve got like four Libra placements. Like I am just not a grounded girl. And so for me, it’s like, when I wake up in the morning, I really have to decide, what am I in the mood to do today? What do I do? What do I feel? What’s the vibe, what’s going on?

Like, do I wanna just lay by the pool today or do I wanna do work?

That has been a really unique challenge for me because I’ve spent so many years guilt-tripping myself for that and feeling like I’m not getting enough done that it’s only recently that I’ve actually been able to embody that in a more genuine way and still get a lot done because I embody this.

That is huge. Because I feel like it like that specific case really goes against the typical business advice. Like again, coming back to like systems and structures and routines, I feel like that’s generally like accepted and talked about and everything but like really going with the flow as much as you do, that’s like a whole other level. If you don’t mind, like. How do you manage your business or are able to do all that?

Managing going with the flow

I’ve gone through phases where I haven’t. That’s for sure. Right now, one of the big things that were getting in the way of me being able to really embody that was obviously the pressure to pay bills.

Because I was on Adderall for like 10 years, my number one priority during the pandemic was getting off of Adderall. It was slowly killing me inside and like destroying my insides, deteriorating me from the inside out. But I was really hooked on it because I’m just a perfectionist at heart, and I’m an overworker at heart and an overachiever.

I learned at a young age that, you know, you get love by achieving and all of that jazz. So yeah, I got off Adderall, but then I couldn’t figure out quite how to like maneuver my business or do things without it other than my one-on-one clients. Luckily I’m at the point in my business where getting one-on-one clients is very easy.

That pays my bills. But in terms of building longer term things, working on other projects in my business, all of that stuff. And get them going, I had to move home for a little bit and figure out my work style and take some of the pressure off myself. So that is a huge privilege. When I talk to people about it, I’m always like, you know, you gotta do what you gotta do. For some people it’s getting another job. For some people, it’s like, you know, “Okay, well, I don’t love one-on-one clients for example, but I’m gonna take them on right now because it’s easy to get them while I figure out this other piece”.

Whatever it is. For me, I moved home. I cut my expenses dramatically by moving home because LA rent is insane. And I just challenged myself to actually relax.

That’s a hard one.

I’ve never been more productive ironically, because I wake up every day and I ask myself, what do I wanna do?

Then I just start working on some things and then I’m like, okay, I’m done. And then I just go off and do other things. I really set up a foundation in my business to allow me to do that. I can always get more one-on-one clients if I need to pay bills and I genuinely love working with one-on-one clients right now. I am focusing, I can create content for hours and hours and hours. If you said Whitney, I need you to spend eight hours today making Tiktoks. Oh, I would do it in a heartbeat. I wouldn’t even bat an, I’d be like “really cool, tell me what to do”. I love it. I could sit and talk on Instagram and TikTok for freaking hours. So now my big goal is working on getting paid as a creator, in addition to being paid as a coach.

Expanding into content creation

I love that. Do you have like a specific type of content that you’re looking to get into or have an idea of what that looks like?

So I’m really interested in UGC (user-generated content). I’ve been learning a lot about it. I’ve been watching a lot of YouTube videos and I’ve just been having a lot of fun figuring out what that would look like for myself. I know that you have to create a portfolio which I’m working on. And it was so interesting.

I watched this YouTube video about creating a portfolio for UGC and I was like instantly inspired to do it. You know, I was like, oh, I wanna work on this right now. So I just started it. That’s how, you know, that’s how I know at least that it’s something that I’m excited to do. The other thing that I consider is being paid as a creator.

I am working on building a membership site for people who want a career that’s different than a nine to five. It’s people in general, not just entrepreneurs. I hesitate because I think a lot of people don’t resonate with being an entrepreneur, especially in the creator economy.

I’m really trying to be intentionally vague with like, this is for people who do not fit in the nine to five but you don’t know what you wanna do, or you, you have some skills, you have some talents, but you’re kind of just trying to figure it out. It’s gonna be a place where people can network and meet with each other, and brainstorm ideas. I’m gonna have a bunch of mindset work in there.

I’m still trying to figure out the specifics of how it’s gonna come together, but I’ve had this idea all year. I’ve kind of just been sitting with it, working on it here and there, letting it develop naturally. Working on little bits as I feel inspired to, because that, to me allows me to be sort of a creator and a coach where I can come in.

I can coach people within the membership program. I create content for them. And when I have people to respond to, so I’m a manifesting generator. So I just, I love to respond when I have people to respond to I’m like, again, could do it for hours I just come alive. I could do it by the pool and while I’m travelling.

Like, if my entire business model can be run for my phone, except for the few clients that I see, I would be so happy. So, so, so, so happy.

Reducing pressure to be more productive

When you were talking about the fact that, because you’re kind of going more the flow and kind of seeing what you want to do, not having that pressure of having to do specific tasks and then suddenly, like you are more, more productive.

I feel like that’s such an important thing for people to maybe not understand or internalize, but at least to kind of keep it in the back of their heads when it comes to productivity. Your most productive day might just be the ones where you have the least amount of pressure to actually be productive.

Exactly. Some people work well under pressure. Those are not my people. Those are not the people who follow me. Those are not the people who resonate with my content. The people who resonate with my content, like constant pressure and guilt and shame themselves. and are extremely ineffective. And then I’m like, yeah, cuz like that’s not how you do it.

Yeah. What you have to do is radically take the pressure off mm-hmm in a way that feels like deeply uncomfortable you’re and you’re gonna wanna like fight me on it. You’re gonna be like Whitney. Like what the hell? Why this is terrible. Yeah, I cannot take the pressure off and you know, I can, I can even hear some people listening to this and being like, well, of course you can take the pressure off your living at home.

And I was like, well, yeah, living at home did give me that. Like, I won’t ever deny that. And like,

I could have done it earlier. I just didn’t give myself the permission to fricking chill out until I moved home. There were other times though, when I was. Living in LA and paying rent and all those things that I, I took the pressure off myself and then found myself being productive. And I got that little evidence, you know, cause when you’re trying to do a new approach, you gotta get little bits of evidence to be like, oh, that does work.

Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So it’s like a yes, it’s a yes. And. That’s really interesting too.

Cause I feel like in the ADHD narrative, urgent realm, you kind of, you really have two approaches. You have this one, which I feel is a lot less talked about, and then you have the, oh, put deadlines because urgency is gonna help you get going.

And it’s like, okay. But my stress levels are 12 outta 10. Like that is not,

that’s how I worked for the first five years of my business. I launched. I probably ran a group program twice or three times a year. That was in addition to my one on one clients that was like a big source of income for me was running group programs. And I would run them about different things. And I thought that that model really worked for me because of the urgency.

And the deadlines and that, okay. Let me work really, really, really, really hard. And to get this thing out by a certain deadline and I have people watching, so I actually have to follow through on the deadline, all of that. Well, it would burn me out for like two to three months after. You know, I would be like, so unmotivated.

So uninspired, so like, Ugh. I’m so I’m just exhausted. I’m running the program now. And the, I was like, I was still kind of like urgently keeping up with every time I had to show up and do a call or whatever. Yeah. And then it would be like, by the time that I recovered from that launch, it was time to launch something again.

Because it burned me out so bad that I couldn’t run my business normally.

Yeah. And you’re just writing on the half to use and you know, what do I have to hand in? What do I have to deliver and just, yeah. Holding onto strand.

And then it’s like, okay, well now I have like a month to come up with an idea and then a couple weeks to implement again and then launch launch again.

I was exhausted. It was exhausting. That’s terrible.

I get that. Um, and I love what you, what you said when it comes to like, okay. Taking the pressure off to help create that space of, you know, doing what you feel like doing. So like, what are the, what are the things you tell people to help ease that pressure like is really to like remove deadlines?

Is it to like remove, you know, Like weekly planning or like the theme days, or like, what are the, what are the systems or tips that you tell people to kind of put a hold on.

It’s really individualized. So I usually ask them like what’s causing the pressure and it’s almost always internally. Created. Yeah.

They’re like, well, I have to do this, this and that. And I have to do so it’s like the have tos. It’s the self-imposed deadlines for sure. It’s the, well, once I have an idea, if I don’t follow through on it, then I’m a bad person or whatever they’ve learned about follow through. That is not real. Right. Yeah.

Um, let’s see, what else? It’s. You know, the way that you do things. So sometimes they’re so focused on getting the thing done that they don’t realize the way that they’re going about doing it, just isn’t working for them. Yep. But I think a big thing is, um, Figuring out your income. I think that that is a huge thing.

And I think it’s something that I, um, discounted for a long time. How important it was because I got so good at even when I was like financially hustling. Yeah. I got so good at managing my emotional regulation. And managing my stress levels around money that it was like, even on down months, it would be, I was okay.

You know? Right. So I was like, well, everyone can just do that. And then I got some perspective and I was like, all right, no, that’s you, I’m a coach. And I’m particularly good at this. I’m particularly regulated. Most people don’t have that skillset, which is not, it’s not a bad thing. It just is what it is.

Yep. Um, . And so the big thing that I tell people is like have one area where money is good. Figure out exactly what you owe every single month and I’m not talking, oh, I think I owe a couple grand in bills. I’m talking like exactly what you owe and exactly what you have and exactly what you’re bringing in.

Um, and have some, if you’re trying to like take the pressure off in some areas of your business, Meet that financial need in a, in a way that feels really easy to you. Some people it’s like getting another job. Some people it’s, you know, taking on a few side gigs or yeah. Working with one-on-one clients or whatever, you know, and then focus all of your extra energy.

Don’t let that take up so much energy that you just get sucked into. It. Totally focus all your extra energy on taking the pressure off of the things that really light you up and energize you. Mm-hmm because eventually you’ll be able to switch the income over.

Oh, I love that. That’s so good. Yeah. I feel like a lot of people often just get stuck in their business.

It’s like, no, like be, you know, look outside your business, like, you know, look at what your other options are. in terms of helping you meet that financial security level. So that at least that isn’t an added pressure on, like you said, like I have to do specific things because I have to be able to pay bills and all of that stuff.

Yeah. And I think people, when they get really like caught up in money stuff, um, They start lying to themselves about how much money they actually have. So they’ll be like, oh, well, I’m like, I’ve had so many clients come to me and they’re panicking. Right. And they’re like, oh my God, I’m gonna, I have to make money this month.

I’m like, I’m freaking out. Da, da, da, da. They’re putting so much pressure on their business in a way that is completely, um, going against everything we’ve been working on mentally, emotionally somatically, like whatever. Right. And then I ask them, I say, okay, well tell me like actually how much you have. And they’ve probably got like six months worth.

And I’m just like, okay, tell me, yeah. Tell me again what trauma you’re fucking dumping out right now, because this that’s what that is. That’s just a trauma response. Mm-hmm , which is great. Let’s work through that. Right. But I’m like, this is why I say know exactly what you owe stop lying to yourself. That you’re absolutely floundering.

If you’re not. Or drowning or whatever the, you know, whatever works.

I feel like that goes back to her point where it’s like, you know, the moment, you know yourself, the moment, you know, what’s working and not working. And again, the moment, you know, where you are at financially, it’s so much easier to make decisions that are actually a good fit for you.

Yeah. Yes. Cuz one of the big rules that I make for all my clients is you’re not allowed to make decisions from panic. And I tell them like, I mean, obviously you can do whatever you want. I don’t care. Right? Yeah. You can do whatever you want. I mean, don’t drag me and do whatever you’re gonna do whatever you want, but you could do whatever you want.

but you’re going be better. Yeah, exactly. Like role division of responsibility. Right. But yeah, but you’re gonna be so much better served. If you can make a promise to yourself that you stop making decisions from panic. Mm-hmm , even if you’re panicking today, wait to make the decision about what you’re gonna do tomorrow.

Yep. , it’s not that hard. You just have to wait out the panic. Mm-hmm that will change your life. That changed my life. Like that. One little thing has radically changed my life over the past few years, because the number of decisions that I made from panic that I ended up regretting or burned me out, or cost me a hell of a lot of money.

Yeah. Because you think that it’s smart in the short term and it’s actually not.

Yeah, no. It’s like you have that, just that tunnel vision and that’s all you’re focusing on. You, you know, just can’t see all the other things that are part of the making this decision. Be able to chill lends you to, okay.

What’s actually happening here.

Yeah. And like, it makes, yeah. If you just let yourself panic, right? Like have the panic attack, have the meltdown. Yep. Do whatever you need to do to get through that. Mm-hmm on the other side of it, then you make the decisions.

Totally. No, I love that. I’ve actually been reading. I don’t know if you know this book it’s called the soul of money and I totally forget the author.

Yeah. Yeah. But like, Literally what she says in the book too.

Mm. So what’s funny about that book is that I’ve actually never read it. I have it on my shelf. My like special breed of ADHD is I can’t finish a book to save my life. And, um, which I’m, I’m reading 14 books at once. Oh yeah. I, I start about 14. I can’t remember the last time I oh, the LA actually the last time that I finished a book was big magic by.

What Elizabeth Gilbert. And I think so that was also great book. I finished that book in a pool in Mexico and I was freaking vibing. I was like, this is, this is a book for me. This is my girl, but I had a client years ago who. Worked. She was her mentor. Like her direct mentor for years was Lynn twist. So she, which was sick.

Right. And so she, um, passed on a lot of the things to me and was like, you have to read this all money. I can’t believe you’ve never heard of it. And I was like, who is this Lynn twist person? Like, I don’t know. So I have the book. Have I read it? No, but I like, I get the vibes

yeah. No, and I love it because every beginning of a chapter, she includes a quote mm-hmm , which like, is like every quote is like the most beautiful quote, the most like mind blowing thing.

And I feel like realistically, you could just read each quote and get through the book and still get the gist of what she’s saying.

Cool. I actually just like sparked some, like, maybe I should go read it.

honestly, like I’ve been reading it right now and. It’s good. Cool. Solid. Yeah. Oh man. Okay. So, um, Moving on.

I know you love talking about mini experiments to help, to get to know yourself. Mm-hmm, , we’ve kind of talked about that you can do when it comes to, um, scheduling and deadlines, but why like, do you have like a few favorites that you use with just about almost any, every client that you work with or that you would recommend to anyone?

Well, it’s so tough because it’s like, everyone’s so different. So their mini experi experiments are usually, um, pretty individualized, but sure. The way that I go about it is I have people collect data based on their goals. So for example, I might have, okay. For example, I had a client who we were working on her perfectionism and she doesn’t have ADHD.

She’s just like your kind of classic. Perfectionist, her parents put an insane amount of pressure and criticism on her to succeed and achieve. Right. And, um, she internalized it and it, and I started working with her after an insanely successful corporate career for like 30 years mm-hmm and then around, you know, mid to late forties.

So I guess 20 years from mid to late forties, she ended. Leaving corporate. She was so burned out. Okay. And I was helping her figure out what was next. Yep. And, um, in that we were working on perfectionism. So one of the things I had her do, and I have pretty much every client do this is take notes on, um, Take notes on what it is like your habits.

So it’s like data point notes. Yeah. Where you’re writing out, like, okay, today I did this. And then when this happened, I did this and then this happened. And then I felt this way about it. And I thought this way about it. So it’s like you’re taking data notes, not only on your habits and behaviors, but on your thoughts and your feelings and your judgments and your ego, and like on everything that happens as a.

Okay. Yeah. So it forces you to not judge the habit itself or even judge the judgment of the habit. Exactly. Yeah. Like you, everything has to be observational. I’m like, you are literally Jane Goodall. Like you are studying yourself in the wild. Yeah, you’re removing yourself from your body. You’re in the Marvel comic and you’re just floating behind.

Yeah. You’re floating above you. You can see into your brain, you can see into your thoughts and your emotions and you’re studying yourself. So then it’s like, okay, well, if you have a specific goal to work on perfectionism, let’s say, well, I want you to run an experiment. What, what’s the goal? So for her, the goal was like, I wanna be able to sit down and get to work.

And I, I have a hard time just getting to work cuz ever since corporate it’s. I’m so unmotivated now, I was like, okay, let’s see if putting on a certain playlist is helpful for you. Why don’t you run an experiment to see if this is gonna work? So she was like, okay. So she started taking notes on it and was like, all right, this morning, I’m gonna put on some music and I’m gonna see if that helps and turns out music was super helpful for her.

She likes a really tactile and like, um, like tangible cue. To be able to start things. So with perfectionism, we had our, um, painter rock. because when she was younger, she was panicking so much about like a show until that she had to do that. She waited until the last minute and then came in with a painted rock and was like really embarrassed about it, that she came in with a painted rock.

And so we were like breaking the pattern of. Oh, I do my best work at the last minute. Cause I was like, well, that’s not true. Like sometimes you don’t do your best work at the last minute. So she was like, okay, the painted rock reminds me that I don’t do my best work at the last minute. And the music reminds me that I get to get started.

So these are like little experiments that she ran yeah. To be like, is this gonna help the pattern and the pat the pattern being either not working or waiting till last minute. Yep. And with, through this you’ve completely removed judgment. You’ve completely removed any sort of. um, label criticism, shame, label, guilt, all that stuff.

And you’re just looking at, if this habit leads to this result, then what if I just switch the habit? Will I get a similar result or a different result or whatever? Mm-hmm and it worked for her. So it’s like that works for every single client, cuz it doesn’t matter who you are. What’s going on, what’s coming up around it.

Like you can run an experiment to find out how to. Totally. No, and I love that. I think it helps people develop that skill of, you know, things happen and these things are inherently neutral. Mm-hmm even my reaction to it is inherently neutral. And then mm-hmm, I feel like, again, that’s a skill to develop to be able to just.

Kind of go with it. Yeah. And then afterwards, right. Even if it’s, let’s say coming back to the example of like, when you’re in a panic, like letting yourself like, feel it and then making a decision the next day, it’s like being able to basically recreate that. Okay. I’m feeling it. It is there. I’m acknowledging it.

And then I’m able to choose what to do about it once I’m not as emotionally potentially involved in it. Yes, exactly. Exactly. I love that. That’s I love how you put it too. Just like, write it down. Just help taking outta your head, studying yourself. I use that with everyone. I’m like, you have to start studying yourself and they’re like, oh my God, life is so much better when I’m not like beating myself up 24 7.

And I’m like, no way. . Yeah, no. And I, I say this so much and like, obviously I do productivity content and like that’s such a big thing that comes into it’s like how much energy. You use to beat yourself up and how draining it is to be on the receiving end of it. Yeah. And you obviously, you’re gonna be drained for the rest of the day, like yep.

There’s no more energy in the tank to do anything. Yep. Yeah, I hear you. Um, okay. And I wanna come back to. The very beginning of our episode, when you were like, okay, I work with people who are business owners, but also work with people who are ready to transition and creating alignment. Like, is there anything that we didn’t really touch on today, but again, that are tools and tips to help create more alignment in your, in your personal life, in your business, but also what it comes to routines and self care and productivity.

Yeah. I think most people like the, the funny thing is that most people know. What it is they want and how they move through the world best they’re just so yeah. Yes. Creating like what you want on a macro level, but also how you wanna go about your day, how you work best. Sure. What is working and what isn’t working.

Most people have that data readily available to themselves because we’re thinking about ourselves 24 7, right? Right. There’s very few. And I mean, maybe that’s an inaccurate assumption. I have met people who are entirely unselfaware and it is honestly mind boggling because I forget. That’s a thing that’s possible.

Yeah. Yeah. Cuz I work with people who are incredibly, self-aware usually like to their own demise. Right. They’re like, and it’s usually how they find you and how they wanna work with you in the first place is like I’m like that too. Yeah, exactly. Like I always work with people who are self described, like I’m self-aware to a fault, you know?

And then I’m like, oh, I used to say that story. Let me help you, you know, um, cuz it’s not self-aware to a fault, you’re just beating yourself up. It’s different, but um, but most people have like a ton of information about themselves and have like a lot of understanding of what they do and don’t wanna do.

The biggest thing that’s getting in the way is like what they believe is possible. Truly. And that’s like, oh my God, everyone says that in the entrepreneur space, your belief systems, like you have to believe something is possible to manifest it and blah, blah, blah. But it’s actually not. So like woo, woo.

And manifesting as it sounds, it really is. As simple as let’s say, you don’t wanna work this nine to five job anymore. Like people usually come to me and they know what they don’t want. Yep. That’s which is super valid and great data to move forward. Oh, it’s it’s necessary. It’s a necessary first step.

Yeah. But they’ll say I know what I don’t want. I just don’t know what I do want, but it doesn’t take me long to dig into that and be like, actually, you do know what you do want, you just won’t let yourself have it. You won’t or you won’t admit it, you won’t like, or you won’t admit it. Yeah. Or the thought in your head yeah.

You won’t like get to the place where you actually put it on a P piece of paper, say it out loud, because you’re scared that if you do, you won’t be able to get it or you, or it’s not possible or whatever. Right. Yeah. You’ve been told that it’s like, that’s ridiculous, whatever you’ve been taught about it.

And I don’t think that’s like, people’s fault. That’s definitely conditioning. Right. But yeah, we’re so caught up in our conditioning. That it’s really not that hard. Like some of the, I said this earlier, but some of the most powerful things that I do, or one of the most powerful things I do as a coach is just tell people like, okay, you can do that then.

Yeah. And then it’s like, they try to fight me on it. I’m like, what is, what are you benefiting? Like, how are you benefiting from fighting me on this? Yeah. What if it’s actually just possible? Like, what if you just have to get a little more creative with how you’re gonna go about it? Luckily, the internet is.

Gold mine, unbelievably packed with information and ways to make money and ways to go about things. And, you know, it’s, it really just is as simple as starting to give yourself permission to identify what you want. Yeah. And own it. Even if people don’t get it’s huge. Yeah. It’s huge. I mean, it’s the biggest block.

This is like, why people, you know, why people come to me is like, I dunno what I want. And I’m like, well you do, but you just won’t let yourself have it. Not knowing if you genuinely don’t know, do some reading, go get some examples, go out into the world, go see what’s talk to people what’s out there. Yep.

Exactly. I go on social media just to see what’s. Yeah. Like literally I just go, if I’m feeling uninspired, I go on social media and then I see a bunch of people doing a lot of shit. That’s like so different that I never thought was possible. And I’m like, oh, anything’s possible. Right. Let me get back to it.

Cool. You know, thank you for that reminder back to our regular programing. Wow. This person is making hell money. Doing what? Like, all right, great. That’s it’s all possible to back to my, back to my business, but, um, you know, we, oh shit. Where was I going? This is, you asked me what it’s like to have ADHD in my business.

This is it. This is it. Jesus Christ. I actually, for a really long time, slight tangent for a really long time. I, um, didn’t believe that I had ADHD, even though I’ve been diagnosed and been on Adderall for 10 years. It’s like ADHD is like half of just. But do I really gaslighting yourself? Yeah. It’s just gaslighting yourself into like, I, oh, not really that bad.

Oh no. Everyone’s like that. Yeah. And so then I had a friend, I was living with a friend for a year and a half. My last. And I would, I would say that to her. I’d be like, ah, sometimes I just don’t think I have it. And she, one day just started busting up laughing and she was like, Whitney, you literally like the amount of times you leave shit in random places and never find it.

You trail off in the middle of sentences. You like get so excited you’re you cannot, you’re jumping around to like 18 different things. She was like, you are so much more ADHD than you even realize. And I was like, shit, . I was like, I’m just having fun. What do you mean? like, I just having a good time anyway, alignment.

Um, you know what you want? Let yourself have it every night or one night, a week or however, or one night a month. I journal like once a month, um, sit there and free write. If you could be anywhere in the world in five years, and you could be doing anything that you wanna be doing. And I’m not saying make a five year plan gross.

If you could just be doing anything, your dream, future version, what would you be doing? I don’t care how ridiculous it is. I don’t care how, how out there it is. I don’t care if you don’t think it’s possible, write it out and then start looking for examples of people who are doing that. If you wanna work three hours a day.

Well guess what? I work three hours a day. I said that’s, I feel like now with social media, it’s like, there’s so many people out there that are very outspoken about doing it and making it work. And that it’s, I really don’t. I think the thing that would surprise most people is how little I work and I make, you know, plenty of money right now.

Yeah. It would be a little tight if I was paying rent, but I’m, you know, I’m, I can, I very easily working like a few hours a week. I very easily make like five, six grand a month. Working like a couple hours a week. If I add on a couple extra hours. Yeah. There you go. We haven’t even hit 10 yet. You know what I mean?

Like it’s, it is quite easy. So it’s just about finding it’s not easy at first. Yeah. But like, I really want people to understand that with the internet, like anything is fucking possible. Yeah. No I, anything coming back to your point of like, let yourself. You know, imagine it and let yourself like, want it.

It’s like, there’s gonna be such a big difference between making decision to reach that like top level goal versus like making decisions to not fail or to just like, you know, keep your safety in net. Like exactly. That’s a huge gap. And like, depending on where you’re making decisions from where you’re at in terms of like, oh, this is good enough.

Mm-hmm like, that’s gonna put you on a whole different trajectory. Yeah. Like why freaking miles? Yeah. So you just gotta do it. You just gotta go for it. Life’s too short, you know, it’s too short and it’s too depressing to be caught in like your obligations. Yeah. It’s so God, what a sad way to live. Like you, it’s never too late to just.

Start doing something different and put yourself out there. The best thing I ever did was burn out my business, cuz even though it was like terrifying, terrifying as hell and like so overwhelming. And so like I did not know how I was gonna pay my bills certain months I was like scrambling. Right. It was also exhilarating mm-hmm because it reminded me that I was not stuck.

So many and I haven’t let go of that. Yeah. I’ve never let go of that. Now. I’m like the, the options are endless. And when I feel myself getting stuck in a rut of like, oh, I have to do this, or I have to do that. I’m like, No. Yeah. If I wanted to, I could pause my whole business tomorrow and go get, I have a dream and be on a reality show.

So I’m like, I could very easily go apply to one of these reality shows. I know enough people in LA that I could probably get on one pretty quickly. They get in. Yeah, yeah. Not one of the ones where you have to be like, you know, not like a love island where you have to look like a super model, but like, you know, one of the more normal ones, like the circle or big brother, like I would love to be on big brother.

And so I’m like, I could just go do that and I’ll start a social media career and it’d be easy. Like I just, whatever it doesn’t matter. Yep. Do whatever you want have fun with it. It’s fun. And if I remember correctly, I think, uh, I watched one of your well reels cuz it was on Instagram, but I think it was like you were saying how it’s like, you know, the moment that, you know, it’s, you’ll often think about quitting and it’s okay to quit, but then it’s like you consider what your other options are and the moment those become more exciting than what you’re currently doing.

That’s the moment that it’s like, okay, well, I guess it’s time for something different. Right? I think the specific example you were giving is like going back to nine to five, but obviously applies. Literally anything I have, I will say that sometimes when we chase excitement, um, we can get caught in a loop of chasing excitement over and over and over again.

And I will exciting. It’s not the right thing anymore then like okay. Burnt to the ground. Yeah. Again. I will warn people about that. Like if you tend to get addicted to dopamine and addicted to the excitement, which like ADHD is such a thing. Yeah, me too. So I had to like commit to boredom this year was all about committing to boredom for me and allowing myself to be bored.

Again, ironically never been more productive, more relaxed, happier in my life than when I committed to boredom. And. You’ll know the difference between chasing excitement, because you’re like feeding for adrenaline. Yeah. And chasing excitement because you’re like, wow, my life, like I want this new thing.

Yeah. And it scares the fuck outta me, but I really want it. Yeah. Is there alignment, but you just need to keep T trudging along or is, you know, is it’s really just not working and that excitement from having found. More alignment saying the same word five times, but I know, I know the word alignment is like, I get so sick of it so quickly, but it’s like, there’s no other word.

I’m sorry. I like, I hate how much it’s such a, like a buzzword now on social media and yet like, it’s so important. It’s so important. Like it’s real, it’s a real buzzword . Yeah. Like it’s so important to create that between you and your business and your, and your life. Mm-hmm . Okay, well, uh, I feel like I’m gonna jump on talking for hours, but I wanna be respectful of your time.

So let’s, uh, I feel like this is a nice place to end our conversation. So, I mean, thank you so much for coming on and chatting with me, honestly, like so happy to have had you, um, if people wanna find out more about you and. Work with you potentially. Where, where can you find you? What are you currently working on?

Yeah, so I, um, you can find me on Instagram and TikTok at Whitney Catalan. You I’m starting my podcast up again, called it’s all made up anyway, which is. It, you get it. It’s all made up anyway. yeah, I know. Right. I came to you one day and then my favorite way to explain it is like, yeah, my podcast is called, it’s all made up anyway.

Cuz like, you know, it is, people are just like, they get it instantly. Yeah. Like, okay, that makes sense. I am gonna be launching a membership site in the next few months, um, for people who want to live a life. It all being made up and want to, you know, explore routes other than like a boring nine to five.

Yeah. Um, some people love a nine to five and I never wanna put, you know, disrespect on that because I think that’s great if it works for you. Like for me, what happy for you? Yeah. I’m honestly, there are days when I’m jealous. There are days where I’m like, shit, my life would be easier if I just, you know, had didn’t have a problem with authority, but here we are.

I think the longest I, I manage it in nine to five was, uh, nine months. Yeah, I don’t even, I’m trying to think of the last one I had. Like, I’ve always like, had done part-time jobs side gigs instead. Yeah. Cause I don’t even know how to even get accepted by a job. Like I’ve never, oh, I haven’t made a resume since college and I don’t miss it anyway.

Um, so it’s all made up anyway. That’s gonna be the podcast and there will be an associated membership site with it. I am also writing. Um, in my multi passionate way, I’m also writing on subs all about like my dating and hookup stories. And it’s called for the memoir because I’ve done a lot of things for the memoir.

So we’re doing that. So just come find me on Instagram. Everything’s there. So I’ll have all the links in the show notes. So if you obviously wanna look into anything that, uh, you’ve mentioned, or that she’s mentioned, you guys can check it out there. yeah. And I am taking one on one clients to let me know.

Um, I have limited spots because you. Keep it exclusive, but yeah, I am taking some, so hit me up. Well, thank you so much for coming on the podcast and, uh, thanks for it’s. I see you in the next episode.

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