Female Founders: Shamananda On The Five Things You Need To Thrive and Succeed as a Woman Founder
Accountability. Know what you’re creating and have the courage to look at it closely. That recognition is the only way you’ll have the opportunity to change it into something that works better. Continue to find better ways to do everything using accountability, and don’t be attached to doing anything a certain way. Be flexible.
As a part of our series about “Why We Need More Women Founders”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Shamananda.
Shamananda is a master shaman, mentor and counselor specializing in transformational enlightenment through spiritual leadership, energy healing, holistic therapy, and other lifestyle guidance. She is the founder of shamanic transmutative healing, a modality that effectively realigns the ethereal body back to its divine archetype. She offers a wide range of shamanistic services to fit each unique life journey. She also specializes in spiritual guidance, shamanistic/guru and enlightenment training and services, sound healing events, spiritual retreats and hosts healing or speaking engagements.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit more. Can you tell us a bit about your “backstory”? What led you to this particular career path?
When I was young, I knew that I was different. I was highly intuitive, and I could perform energy healing with my hands. I could take people’s headaches away, and I could take people’s suffering away emotionally. I could change the energy in a room just by making minor shifts. It was only a matter of time before I became a Shaman, but it took a lot of interpersonal work to get there.
I was depressed, and I had OCD that was debilitating. I also carried the burden of past life trauma that occurred at a very young age. To survive and have a “normal” life, I decided it was time to fight for it. That is when I truly began pursuing my shamanic career.
I spent a lifetime of training with ascended spiritual masters and a decade of training personally with a living spiritual master and avatar, which has led me to become one of the world leaders in advanced shamanic healing and guidance.
A lot of the time with Shamanism, life trains you, as opposed to a school. My training came in learning how to utilize neuro plasticity to be able to grow past my trauma, and that came from within. My particular training of the dark night of the soul lasted 20 years before I was able to start pulling myself out and liberating myself from the pain that I put myself through. As a Shaman, it’s almost like you die hundreds of times before you’re able to become who you are.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company?
The most interesting and uplifting part of my job is watching people transform to obtain a more enlightened life through the work we do together. It is the greatest gift in the world to watch people have the courage to grow and make higher choices to discover their true happiness.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
When I first started my practice, I didn’t quite understand the ebb and flow of how people would come in and out of my life. At first, after putting in everything that I had into people’s growth and growing so close to my patients, I assumed we would always work together. But all good things come to an end and my patients would go their own way and it confused me.
It may not seem funny, but my reaction to it was comical at the time. It was a very naive way to see the world. Of course, it’s ok to love people and not be attached to how the relationship turns out, but it took me a minute to appreciate the gift of how people flow in and out of our lives. It’s actually quite beautiful.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
There have been a lot of people who have helped me along the way, however, I became the person I am today through a journey that I took alone. My life choice was either to survive or to fall away. I chose to survive. I prayed a lot, and so if I were to give credit to anyone, it would be the Ascended Masters for giving me the grace to live through an impossible period of my life.
Ok, thank you for that. Let’s now jump to the primary focus of our interview. According to this EY report, only about 20 percent of funded companies have women founders. This reflects great historical progress, but it also shows that more work still has to be done to empower women to create companies. In your opinion and experience what is currently holding back women from founding companies?
If we examine history closely, we can surmise that women are fighting against a long societal, psychological suppression, where we have been told we aren’t allowed to be powerful. While there is no truth to this, it takes time for society to step away from old social constructs and embrace new ideas or change. Old school money is primarily a boy’s club, so certain aspects of business for women are still untouchable.
Things are beginning to evolve. Several companies are now equal opportunity employers, and the powerful women that I counsel often suffer greatly from self-worth conversations when given opportunities to take higher-level jobs. Even when those conversations don’t permeate within the company, the stories that hold them back may date back to how they were raised. Occasionally, their parents’ idea of how girls should be treated while growing up or how they weren’t allowed to shine for whatever reason plays a role in their hesitation to become leaders in their field.
Another obstacle has always been how our economic system markets products to females and how many companies still sell products by exposing women’s psychological insecurities. It takes time to untangle it all. My job is to support women in understanding that the limiting beliefs that keep them from success no longer has to be a part of their story. Instead, we create a new foundation, permitting them to be powerful and successful. This change takes courageous risks, and it takes time.
Can you help articulate a few things that can be done as individuals, as a society, or by the government, to help overcome those obstacles?
We get to stop judging each other and ourselves. We get to be the champion for people who choose to be different and to be powerful. Our society is often about repression, how people aren’t allowed to be themselves. It isn’t a threat to anyone if a woman stands up and decides to be powerful, especially if she stands for positive things. We should encourage that, not throw her under a bus because we feel afraid of powerful women. When people try to suppress power it’s because they personally feel weak and afraid. No one who feels powerful would need to suppress anyone.
So, society gets to learn how to be accountable for what they are creating. We get to lift people up and love the planet and everything that lives here. We get to encourage people who want to shine. And, we get to hope that every time we do that, that the person we lift up will shine more brightly than we ever did.
This might be intuitive to you as a woman founder but I think it will be helpful to spell this out. Can you share a few reasons why more women should become founders?
It isn’t easy to encapsulate. By leaving women out of the equation for leadership, you are taking out possibilities for greatness away from half of the population. Great leadership should not be defined as masculine or feminine but instead characterized by skill, integrity, accountability, adaptability, and wisdom.
Women offer a different kind of energy. It’s on the odd side, but let’s discuss how women learn to process information from a young age. Because we have continuously fluctuating hormone schedules we have learned how to stand on solid ground even when reality seems to disappear beneath our feet. It’s that ever-fluctuating barometer that has given our minds the education and life experience to see how everything is interconnected naturally. That is the kind of wisdom we get to bring to the table as we run businesses. If that kind of wisdom is within the nucleus of everything we create, we will be able to co-create a well-rounded conscientious society, which in my opinion is what the world really needs right now.
Is everyone cut out to be a founder? In your opinion, which specific traits increase the likelihood that a person will be a successful founder and what type of person should perhaps seek a “regular job” as an employee? Can you explain what you mean?
I am constantly hearing that strong woman are scary. We aren’t. Strong women are powerful, so one might feel intimidated if they are afraid of themself or their own power. The truth is, authentically strong women understand the depths of vulnerability. We understand that’s where our true strength lies.
Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. Based on your opinion and experience, what are the “Five Things You Need To Thrive and Succeed as a Woman Founder?” (Please share a story or example for each.)
1. Passion. Passion is the driving force behind any successful company. If you don’t currently experience passion, find a way to. Have the tenacity to run with what you believe in.
2. Integrity. You get to take a stand for what is good in this world and never let go. Your foundation gets to be built on the strength of your convictions. If you build your entire business this way, people will feel your integrity right to the core of everything you do.
3. Vulnerability. This is where your strength is, and it’s what the world loves to see. Don’t be afraid of showing who you truly are. Take a stand and be yourself.
4. Resourcefulness. You are never without resources. Success giants understand they must master resourcefulness.
5. Accountability. Know what you’re creating and have the courage to look at it closely. That recognition is the only way you’ll have the opportunity to change it into something that works better. Continue to find better ways to do everything using accountability, and don’t be attached to doing anything a certain way. Be flexible.
How have you used your success to make the world a better place?
I give my time back to the people I counsel. I work with them and break them out of the stories that keep them stuck in limiting beliefs. I love the world unconditionally, and I offer that to everyone I meet. I’ve used my success to support those in need. In my opinion, that’s what success is for.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good for the greatest number of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.
I would teach everyone how to embody unconditional love.
We are very blessed that some very prominent names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them.
Sometimes, I read stories about celebrities that I want to meet who seem to make a difference, like Tony Robbins. I’d love to be a spiritual Tony Robbins in my lifetime and understand how he created his empire of transformation. Then, there are some actors who truly care about their fans and are down to earth people, like Keanu Reeves. I’ve always wanted to meet Keanu as a fellow Canadian. He sounds as though he’s a well-rounded guy and an overall good person. I’d love to thank him for keeping his humanitarianism intact.
Mostly, I’d like to speak to someone out there who would want to work with my nonprofit to create some truly amazing opportunities for a lot of people wanting to transform their lives in big ways. I have groundbreaking ideas and I’d love to share them with forward-thinking sponsors. My one true desire is to transform the world. So, if you’re out there, please connect with me. I have no doubt we can make the world a better place together.
Thank you for these fantastic insights. We greatly appreciate the time you spent on this.