April 25, 2023

Episode 9:

3 Lessons for Removing Mindset Blocks in Private Practice with Chris Swenson

In this episode, Chris shares 3 lessons to manage private practice mindset blocks and teaches practical strategies how to start writing your first book so you get published.

Episode 9: 3 Lessons for Removing Mindset Blocks in Private Practice with Chris Swenson

Show Notes

Kayla: Welcome back to another episode of the Designer Practice Podcast. I’m your host, Kayla Das. So, today on the show we have Chris “Rhino” Swenson author, speaker, mindset coach, and fellow private practice owner, here with us.

Chris will be sharing with us the lessons that he has learned through his private practice journey, and he’ll be giving us a sneak peek into his signature framework from his upcoming book, rooted in Rhino Wisdom and Symbolism.

Hi Chris, welcome to the show. It’s great to have you here.

Chris: Well, thanks. Glad to be on here. So, yeah. Wonderful.

Kayla: Yeah. So, Chris, I’ve actually been in your community for a while. I’ve been a student in your course Published, that provides therapists and coaches information on how they can write and self-publish a book. I haven’t started writing my book yet, but it is my next major milestone in my entrepreneurial journey. And now all I have to do is put it out in the world.

Chris: Yes, absolutely. There’s a time when you want to try to bring that to life, and I tell a lot of people if they got something inside of them, that the world needs to hear that. Put that stuff out there. So, yes, definitely. It’s exciting for you though.

Kayla: So, for us to know, how many books have you authored so far?

Chris: I have published two books previously and working on the third now. And it’s interesting because my first one I did, I just wanted to know how to it. Like, I don’t know how to do this, so I’m just going to put it together. And I put this thing together called Rhino Life Lessons. And that’s actually my best-selling book to date because like people really like it. There’s people that’ll be like, man, can I get like 10 copies? I want to give it to friends for a holiday or something like that.

And the second one I did Private Practice Warrior. I just put it out there to try to get myself out there speaking gigs and podcast stuff. And that worked to do that as well too. So sometimes you write it for an angle. But this next one’s going to be like my big baby, so, yes.


Kayla: Ah, well, before we get into a little bit of that, because I know you’re going to be giving us some sneak peeks today. Tell us a little bit about who you are, where you’re from, a little bit about your private practice journey, and even your book journey.

Chris: Yeah, my name is Chris “Rhino” Swenson, and I live in Colorado, now since 2005, but I actually grew up in Minnesota, North Dakota. It’s like right on the border. It’s like a river crossed the thing you’re in both states, you know. But I grew up around the lakes and stuff around water. So when I moved down here in kind of the rural areas of Northeast Colorado, there’s not a lot of trees or water around here, so that was different. So I missed being on the water for sure.

But I did the usual course where I worked at like an agency for quite a while and it got very toxic, very burnt out. But from the get-go, I knew I wanted to be in my own business. And so eventually I made the leap. And in fact, I was so burnt out, busy at my agency that I thought I was having a heart attack or whatever. So I went in, they hooked me up to all this stuff and then they told me like, “Oh well. It’s not really that abnormal.” and I’m like, what the hell does that mean? Not that abnormal. So I got on all these pills and stuff, but eventually I left the agency started private practice, like full-time. Just went right into it. And sometimes that might work and sometimes it’s not a good idea. For me, it worked out. I took myself off all the pills and I was normal again.

So yes, workplaces can definitely impact you. So I’ve been in practice now since 2010 as a solo practice, since I work in a very rural area. I like to grow into a group one, but it’s just, I don’t know, something different about the small town area that is not quite there. Plus, I like to run my own stuff on there. But yeah, I’ve done that as a private practice owner. And then as time’s going it’s always me, I got to evolve, I got to grow. And so I had blog, I would do some podcast stuff, but always from the get-go.

When I went back to school in the later ’90s was I want to write books. I want to speak. I want to be able to do workshop seminars which today you got courses and all this other stuff and retreats. So, I kind of lost focus and just became a therapist for quite a while until they realized like, “Wait a minute! There’s a lot more I want to do.” Plus, instead of waiting for people to come in, I wanted to give them things before then, like a book, or where I go when I speak at various places. That way people can start to hear more about me. And give them the help that they also need. So I’ve been writing those books, doing that. I got some upcoming podcast stuff I’m working on. I’m actually making a little pivot on a lot of stuff. But no, the course has been there, but it hasn’t been like all rosy.

And I think we’ll talk about that a little bit later, about the private practice journey isn’t just, “Wow, you just open up and there you go.”


Kayla: Yeah. And you mentioned. Your journey with experiencing burnout. And I know for a lot of private practice owners, that is what brings them to private practice. And that’s exactly what happened to me as well. Like I was extremely burnt out in my organizational job and I just quit and went into private practice and haven’t look back. And I’ve loved every minute of being in private practice, but I do know that tends to be for many private practice owners that trigger of jumping in.

Chris: Yeah, I no doubt because the burnout thing was very real with the agency, but I’ve seen it a lot where, and I’ll probably get to it in one of my topics here about when you don’t create your private practice that really serves you, you end up serving it and man it can lead to a lot of burnout and all that stuff as well. And so sometimes we try to get away from something and if we’re not, setting it up right or however, we create the same old thing for ourselves. Burnout in our profession is a pretty big deal. And there’s a number of them. I’ve just spoke at a childcare conference for childcare workers. And there’s a big burnout with that. And so that was a big thing. And I’m doing another one for a virtual childcare practice kind of stuff with burnout, because it’s a lot of it that’s out there. Definitely.

Kayla: Yeah. For sure. So you’ve done a lot of things that many therapists, myself included, aspire to do. You’ve ran a successful therapy practice. You’ve written books. You’ve created successful digital courses that, again, I’m a member of. You’ve been asked to speak at many different professional engagements. Really, what haven’t you done?

Now, there’s a time, like I said, where I’ll be speaking at the Meet You in Kentucky Conference in May which is for group practice owners. But yeah, a lot of that’s come, but there’s been a lot of failures along the road and I’ll get into some of that. Yeah.

Kayla: Yeah. So when you think of your success, what do you contribute to be the key factor to that success?

Mindset and Private Practice Success

Chris: My key factor is, to give you a generalized view would be mindset. But that’s what Rhino is to me. Rhino is my mindset and without that, I don’t think I would be successful. And like it is, that book, Private Practice Warrior, that’s what it alludes to is what is the most essential factor for success in private practice. It’s mindset. In other words, it’s you getting you to do what you need to do and weathering through that jungle a lot.

So to me, I could learn a lot of this stuff about what to do and this stuff, but man, I know that journey. I loved it because it really built me of who I am. I’m like a big personal development dude and forged me for mental toughness, you know? So mindset would be the biggest thing to me, that would be the greatest, especially to level up and stay the course.

Kayla: So tell us a little bit about the rhino aspect of that. And I know your nickname is even Rhino. So tell us a little bit about that as well as your signature framework that’s rooted from Rhino symbolism and wisdom.

Chris: Yeah, it’s really kind of evolved over the years. And one other thing to answer your other question too is one thing I tell people about: never, ever forget about the inner game because it’s always going on. When you’re trying to plan for your business, it’s going on right there. So being aware of a lot of our stuff can impact that.

But the Rhino stuff began for me, over 20 some years ago, I remember I worked as a multi-level marketing company, which I didn’t do well on the business, which some of us don’t. When you get into that. But they had this training seminars that you’d go to, to teach you the business and stuff, but a lot of it was personal growth. That’s what I paid attention to. I probably should have paid attention to how to do the business, but their little symbol was a rhino.

And all my life I’ve never really thought about Rhino, until that moment. It just was there and I couldn’t get it out of my head. It was just there. And then everywhere I’d go, I would just get these thoughts of rhino and whatnot. And so what I learned now was when rhinos do come to you in dreams, part of the ancient wisdom from it or just being presented to you, it’s telling you that it’s time to step back, get yourself grounded and centered, and really figure out what is most important to you. And it was during that time when I really changed and went back to school to get on this journey. But over the years it’s evolved.

At first it was just like, “Yeah, thick skin, that’s what I want.” And then I evolved it into, for a long time where it basically represents being powerful. But powerful can be broken down into strong, wise, and resilient. And so even my practice is Rhino Wellness Center. And people when they come in, that’s what I want. I want them, when they leave, that they’re stronger, wiser, and more resilient than they first came in. And so for me, I need to build my how to be stronger, wiser, more resilient. So there’s a lot of the toughness stuff, and I know from our hustle culture that they’ve used the rhino for like, “Go, Go, Go,” “Charge, charge, charge,” “Plow, plow, plow.”

Rhino Symbolism

And when I learned more about the real rhino symbolism and what it really means, that’s only a part of it. And so they stole some of that, which creates this burnout in our profession. To give you an idea, I would go, go, go. Nothing’s going to get in my way. So I told myself, I’m going to do a 10k every day for 30 days, and I have been exercised at all, but I’m going to do it because I’m a rhino, I can. Well, I got in like three, four days and I was doing this and something popped in my knee. And I’m like, “Whatever. Suck it up buttercup. You need to keep going.” So I did for like two or three more days doing this and I’m like, “What are you doing? You’re going to do it and then you’re going to be in a hospital for how freaking long?” Like this is dumb. So that’s where wisdom had to come in as part of that, not just being strong and resilient, the powerful nature of rhino. It was that part of wisdom. In other words, you need to be smart about this.

And really for business, for me, it’s having to be that emotionally and mentally strong and very resilient that I can weather through what I need to. But to be wise about that, to be smart too. So it’s been strong, wise, resilient for a long time until I started really getting into this research for this book the last couple years. And it was eye-opening because I really learned a lot more about the symbolisms and what rhinos really mean. And you start to see from a lot of that, that in a lot of cultures it means love. It means peace and contentment when these things also come. And rhinos are not aggressive. If you run across a bear with a cub, you’re in trouble. They don’t care. They’re going to come get you. But if you run around a rhino with a little baby rhino out there, they’re not going to do anything do you? Unless you do something to it. But they’re not. And so, there’s a lot of mistruths that go on with that. So I thought, that’s kind of cool. There’s a lot of mistruths with me in my life. And so it just represented my whole mindset, but it’s really coming into being strong, wise, resilient, which is that powerful piece. But it’s also getting to that self-love, that compassion and that centeredness, the groundedness that I see it like the inner spirit that we all have. That it can give us that powerfulness, but it can also help us to just be calm in the center of chaos. And for my entrepreneurial journey, it’s been huge. Without that, there’s no way I could do this. It’s almost as if that’s like my other alter ego to a point. And I know I can remind myself of what that means. And I have principles, values that I earn every day that come out from Rhino. And so for me, when I can tap into that energy, that’s when I can be more creative. That’s when I can continue to push through. Because the push and pull of being in practice is tough sometimes. You know where you get the doubt, you get the imposter syndrome and all that stuff’s going to happen. But having something on board that you’re able to channel that has kept me going.

Society and Hustle Culture

Kayla: How you spoke about the rhino symbolism and in society it’s connected to that hustle culture, right? That go, go, go, go. And I know even when I worked in agencies, I experienced it. And I know that a lot of our listeners have experienced that too.

So to hear the other side of it, is really helpful because the way you have framed the rhino wisdom is also what I believe private practice is all about. When it comes to private practice, it’s about designing the practice that you love to work in. It’s not about always hustling, it’s not about always working. But it’s about feeling fulfilled, of course, supporting your family in many cases, but being able to do the things that you love, not necessarily just work, work, work. And I love how you connected all of that together.

Chris: Yeah, because when you were saying that, it really got me thinking too. Because there was a time like when my kids were little and it would be like, work, work, work. Because that’s what you do. Charge, charge, charge. And I’d sit at a park and I’m like, what am I doing? I could be doing something at work, they’re fine. And I look back like, man, really? To enjoy life is huge and me personally, I am a very much a go-getter, pretty driven, but I also like to be lazy. I also like to have fun and so I got a lot of ideas from a lot of the like stoic philosophy and I’ve done a lot of mental toughness training with former special operations soldiers and stuff like that. So there’s always just this go-at-it, but man, I like to have a good time. I like to be lazy sometimes, and I realize like rhinos, that’s it. They just kind of hang around, have a little mud bath from time to time, do their deal. But when they’re focused and go, then it’s go time. And I think that balance is what we all need because you’re very right. You create a practice that serves you rather than you serving it, so to speak.

Kayla: Yeah. And it’s funny that you say that because when it comes to private practice, and this is my own experience. I feel like I’ve never worked less than I do in private practice, but I have never felt more successful than I do since I’ve been in my own practice.

And I think that everyone’s definition of success is different. But for me, I’ve been able to obtain the autonomy that I’ve always needed, right? It’s really deep ingrained in my values of why I started. Of course, I also love business. So doing business coaching, it is what fulfills me. It is what I love to do. But I’m doing it on my terms. If I need to take today off, I can take today off. I’m not going to cause I’m here today recording with you, but it’s so great because we have that ability to be autonomous and to be successful in whatever successful means for us.

Chris: Absolutely. That’s the big thing because when we try to define what success looks like, sometimes that’s what trips us up. Because we think once we get there, we get there. But sometimes the way we define success, like I said, the inner game’s going on all the time and a lot of those problems out there laugh at us because we get there but we’re not fulfilled. Yeah, absolutely. It’s a big deal with all that.

3 Entrepreneurial Lessons from Ancient Rhino Wisdom and Symbolism

Kayla: Yeah, agree. And I think this goes really well into when we spoke about this podcast today, you mentioned that there are three entrepreneurial lessons from Ancient Rhino Wisdom and Symbolism. Can you share with our listeners what those lessons are and how can it help our listeners move past some of the practice blocks or mindset blocks that might be preventing them from moving forward in their business and practice?

Chris: Absolutely. Because when I look at like mindset blocks, there’s a true reality of private practice. If I just remove all these blocks, like these money blocks or whatever, now it’s more smooth sailing. And the reality is no. It’s a little less rocky perhaps because you’re not pushed and pulled as much with so much turbulence. But there’s still going to be fear. There’s still going to be things that’s there.

And so, the three lessons I want to talk about are from my book: Awaken your Inner Rhino book that I’m working on now, and it’s not just written for people in private practice. But all of those things you can apply to.

Lesson #1: Be Grounded & Centered

And so the biggest one that you find is like when rhinos do come to you. And so I always say like, Hey, if you’re listening to this, the rhino has come to you and there’s probably a reason and it’s telling you to just stop. Take a moment to get yourself grounded and centered. Figure out what’s most important to you.

What do you really want to do? Like we talked about how you’re designing your practice. How is this going to really serve you and your life and your lifestyle? And setting it up that way because being grounded and centered is like being aligned. Mind, body, and spirit. When you can align yourself mind, body, and spirit. It is a lot more of a, like when the train’s rolling down the train tracks, man. It’s rolling. And so sometimes what you do that is really getting a sense of purpose. You need to find what is that purpose? What is your why? Why do you really want to do private practice? Why? And make it big, make it large, make it emotional.

Because when the starts getting kind of rocky and you deal with some turbulence, our minds always look for a way out. That’s what it does. When I used to have to do cold water training for one of my Embrace Fear programs that I went through, you get in the cold water and your mind’s like, what are you doing? It’s time to get out. But you had to retrain it to stay in that. And so our minds look for a way up, but you can go back to that purpose that reminds you of, “Hey, This is who you are. This is the why.” And that’s that grounding thing. Get back grounded and centered again. Remember why you did this, and then come from that standpoint. And that’s a big lesson that is there.

Lesson #2: Stay on the Course

The second lesson would be like staying the course. It is to stay the course with this. There are some real realities that exist in private practice and for me, the greatest thing about business and private practice is I don’t want it to be easy. I mean, don’t get me wrong. It’d be great just to put it out there and everybody comes into your office. The challenges I’ve learned that going through challenges is what builds who you are. I always say, when you get out in the jungle, now you’re going to deal with what’s going on your own stuff and everything. I look at that as like that entrepreneurial forge that we all go through that’s going to forge us to be better.

So to me, it’s like a spiritual journey in a sense for me to create a practice and other business stuff. Because I’m going to feel those fears. I’m going to face those fears, man. I’m going to learn about other fears I didn’t even know I had. But man, it starts to come out. Great. Now, you know it’s there and then facing it. So to me, staying the course and not quitting is a big, big deal. And a lot of times for people, we get in our heads too much and sell ourselves out, and all of a sudden it’s like, “Man. No, you can do this.” I think it was the Angry Bird’s app is what’s coming to me. Have you ever heard of that or not? But

Kayla: I think I played it for like a very short period of time.

Chris: Yes. Yeah. I had heard the developers of that app that was like their 50th attempt to make it as an app. So if they would’ve quit at like 47, which is a lot of failure, oh my gosh. And for me, stay the course.

When COVID hit, everything changed with our private practices, that was a challenge that had gone on. I went through a divorce just a year before that, but within one year of all of this stuff, I had launched three or four different like business program things, all of which flopped big-time. Like I set up a whole event, brought in a lot of these speakers. It was a great event, and then I put my thing out there to . , and it was very disappointing. And then you pivot, you do it again. Boom. And so within one year it was like, okay, divorce COVID, three, four failures. And I was pretty beat up. I mean, you get down on yourself. Because I’m human, right?

But when I could go back to my inner rhino and really see it and realize, man, there’s a lot of lessons I learned. And now when I look back I’m like, yeah, no wonder why that didn’t work out. But I didn’t know that until you go through some failures. And the failures, how I looked at it, maybe they’re financial type problems, but it really got me connections. I met a lot of people that’s helped me get onto podcasts. That’s helped people to all these other things. From a private practice standpoint, sometimes what looks like a failure.

I remember one time I set up a course, like a live presentation on some topic. One person showed up, that was it, one. And I was like, “Oh my gosh, this is embarrassing.” But then I thought, man, one person did, they can get the whole time, like I can work directly with them and then they can tell their people and all this other stuff. And so I went through and did a lot of that, but I learned about the marketing piece and what went wrong and blah, blah, blah, blah. But there was a moment for me to have to face that, like, oh my gosh, one person. Okay, this is embarrassing. It led to a lot of other stuff that other agencies had heard about. And they wanted me to come on and do it because they had their big marketing machine. So it worked out. I’m like, “Wow, if I didn’t go through that, I wouldn’t get something.” So to me, stay the course is the big thing. Don’t quit. You can do this. And if you don’t think you can, hey, you’re a learner, you can find a way.

Kayla: I think two things that you mentioned there is really important to highlight is the fear piece and the pivot piece because as a business coach I see that a lot. I reframe fear as fear is something that we truly want, but because we haven’t done it yet, it’s the uncertainty that’s connected to it that we’re fearing.

Managing Private Practice Fear

And I always love to give this example, when I first started my business coaching practice, I started a Facebook group. I actually know that you’re in it, Boosting Business Therapist Private Practice community. When I first started that I knew that nobody was in it. It was zero people. And I was thinking to myself like, who’s going to join my Facebook group? Who wants to be the first? Who wants to be the second? Who wants to join a Facebook group that only has a hundred people? Well, I kept sending it out and going into communities and asking people to join, and now it has over I think it’s 3,100 people in that Facebook community. And if I let fear stop me, I would’ve never sent out my first email or I would’ve never advertised it. And I would’ve never did that one small thing that I wanted to do and be at a place where I’m 3,100 people.

Allowing Yourself to Pivot

The other thing is the pivot piece, right? Sometimes we think when we start in private practice, whatever we choose, we have to stay there. When I first started private practice, I wanted to help people with domestic violence because that’s the agencies that I worked in. That’s where I spent most of my time. But then I realized that wasn’t what my passion was. What my passion was, is helping people with career fulfillment at this point, I still didn’t know it was business coaching.

So what I did is I worked with people experiencing workplace burnout because I experienced workplace burnout. It’s still career fulfillment, but it’s not until I started realizing and talking to people and they said, “Kayla, business the hard part for me.” And I’m like, “Wow, that was the easiest part for me. Therapy is hard for me.” So, being able to go on and realize that the skill that I had was what other people wanted. I pivoted again.

So I think it’s also recognizing that one fear is natural. And actually it’s there because you want to do something. You want to start your private practice. You want to send that email to get people in your Facebook group. You want to start that course, you want to sell that course or whatever it is. But also pivoting. It’s that whatever you do next doesn’t mean that you have to do that forever. You can always shift and pivot along the way.

Chris: Yeah, it’s awesome. Hearing all that stuff and your group is very, very good. So I enjoy it.

Chris: Sometimes we pigeonholed ourselves into, “I’m in private practice. So I’m a therapist. This is what I need to do.” And like you said, there’s another part of you calling to you saying, wait a minute. There’s something more that you can offer. And you don’t have to just be into that. And that’s where the self-publishing stuff comes to me about. I want to write books, I want to speak, I can do that. And the fear stuff, that’s the reality. Like I said, we can eliminate blocks, but it doesn’t eliminate turbulence that’s on the road. There is risk in what we do. That means yes, you’re going to have struggles. There are going to be challenges. And it’s to embrace those challenges because you’re going to learn something about yourself through this. And you’re going to be a better business owner for it. And so it’s not just to give into the fear or to quit. And to just realize like imposter syndrome, we can all get ready to deal with it and try to get rid of it. But it’s not, and when you get out there, it’s going to be there. It’s going to be in the jungle, man, and it’s going to try to speak to you in this stuff. But learning how to stay the core, learning how to be grounded, like for me in that rhino, that’s who I am. And as long as I stick with that, I’m going to be.

Yeah, but never forget about the inner game, like I said. Because sometimes that’s where we get off course and we don’t realize it. For a lot of people they get focused on, “I want to have a full practice. I need to get a full practice. That’s what I want to get full practice.” And sometimes you, you weren’t quite specific enough. Well, now you got a full practice, but you might have a full practice of people that you don’t enjoy working with. Or the style that you don’t want to have or the hours that aren’t quite right, but you got your full practice. But now it’s miserable and I see it a lot. And so it’s really designing from the get-go how to do that. And if you start it out, hey, you can always change and pivot. If we made a bad choice, that’s fine. We can make another choice to fix a lot of that. So, yeah. No, I appreciate your thoughts with a lot of that.

Lesson #3: Finding Calm in the Chaos

Kayla: Yeah. Thank you. So going back to the third thing, the third entrepreneurial lesson that you have to share with us.

Chris: Yeah. The third one, really great way to move into this because it’s being calm in the chaos. One of the things that the rhino, from ancient wisdom, really says when it comes to you is to be that grounded, calm in the chaos. It’s that part inside of us that is very peaceful, that’s very centering. And so you get a lot of stuff of like self-care with this. When things happen making sure we’re taking care of ourselves. And the rhino’s very symbolic of love, which is that self-love, being compassionate with ourselves. Stop beating ourselves up about, “Gosh, I didn’t do this right,” or perfectionism, other stuff. Have that compassion for yourself. Be content with who you are. Where you’re at. And just trust yourself because when the craziness happens, it will. And you’ll be almost ambushed from it. And you go, “Oh my gosh, what am I going to do?” You get panicked. Kind of like a COVID time or whatever. And that’s the time when it’s like, stop, take a knee. Just take a knee. Take some breaths. Get back in touch with what you wanted to do. Get centered yourself. And from that position, now make decisions instead of letting fear or uncertainty and anxiety make it for you.

And so it’s a big thing about going deep within yourself. Like I called the Inner Rhino Spirit, just going deep within that, reminding me of who I am. But it’s that nice, pleasant, soft place to just be, which is like a meditative kind of thing that in the midst of chaos I can remain calm. Because sometimes somebody has to.

Awaken Your Inner Rhino Book

Kayla: Now tell us a little bit about your upcoming book. You talked about the three entrepreneurial lessons. But tell us a little bit about how we can find it, when it’s out, when you expect it to be out. Anything you’d like to share about your upcoming book.

Chris: Yeah. The upcoming book is going to be called Awaken Your Inner Rhino with a subtitle of: reconnecting with your source of power, love, and peace. And the way I look at it is every one of us has this inner energy that is who we really are, and the world has got us to believe that we’re something different. Or we’ve tried to limp through life because we’ve had these fears that have directed our life for ourselves rather than who we really are. And when we can reconnect back to that, that gets to be where we find that powerful nature, where we’re aligned and we’re grounded and we can become very powerful. Strong, wise, resilient is how I define powerful. And at the same time, it’s that nice loving place deep within us where there might be times where we’re all by ourselves and we don’t have any friend to talk to, and we need to find that within ourselves, whether it’s this inner calm and inner peace and finding it and then working to develop it.

And so I looked at the book at first. There was a lot of going on across our world where suicides, and anxiety, depression. I mean, oh my gosh. All these burnouts, this stuff like that that’s going on. And for me, I’ve learned, like my whole life has been different. Once I really developed this rhino philosophy and lived by it. I looked back, they used to call me little Chris growing up because there was two Chris’ in my neighborhood. I was the younger one. So I was little Chris even though I was bigger than him, but whatever.

So I look at little Chris. Is how I look beforehand. He was very insecure, shy and quiet and not confident, didn’t believe in himself. It’s so different. And I went to a class reunion a couple years ago and people were like, you’re different. And I says, I’m hope I am. It’s been like 30 years. They said, no, no, no, no. And I said, I know. What’s your meaning? Yeah.

Because little Chris is no longer there. Now he still is there. But I try to come from that place. And so what I want from the book is just to be able to help people have these different lessons of how to really reconnect back with our source of power, our source of love, and that peace within ourselves so we can find that and operate from it. Allow it to speak out like our creativity gets covered up because we’re fearful or we’re anxiety ridden. And instead it’s finding that inner power and bring it to the world, man. So it’s around that, but when it comes out, I’m still working on it yet. I’m hoping to get it out possibly by this summer.

But one of the things is, if you follow me on social media. I’m on Facebook primarily. I’ll have a live and author page on there. I just do update stuff like that on there. I will be developing, it should be done possibly by the time this comes out, rhinowisdom.com. People can definitely hear all about that. And what I’m all doing through those things in the book is a way that people can know. And it will be on Amazon and stuff eventually. So if someone’s listening down the road, you can just go over to Amazon and search for that. Awaken your Inner Rhino, and you’ll probably find it.

Strategies for Writing a Book

Kayla: Amazing. Do you have any insights for any listener who wants to write a book? And I know we can have a whole podcast on that itself. But just any advice that you might have for them to get started if they’re thinking about it?

Chris: Yeah, I think the big thing with getting started is just to get started. The most challenging thing is just to get started because we get a lot of our heads and stuff. The self-publishing group that I do on Facebook. People can find ways to get there as there’s some different stuff about where to get started. The online course, like you talked about that you were a part of, is one.

But I always tell people when you first start, there’s probably some idea that you have that you really wanted to share. And bring it to life. You come up with some titles and topics. So you do a lot of research about other people that have written on it. You can read through the reviews to see what’s missing, what isn’t. But you’re going to bring your own voice to this too.

And so just go do it and begin writing. And just for a trick, I don’t actually write, I don’t like to write, I don’t like to type. So I speak it. And it just transcribes out for me, and you can actually get more words done that way. And so just speak it out.

There’s other stuff too, if you’re a therapist, there are certain things that you do with people like say, okay, when someone comes in with anxiety, these are like the three or four steps that I do. Well, those steps can be your chapters. You do this already. If you’ve done a presentation somewhere, if you can have it recorded, then you can have that transcribed out. If you have a course or a program. The modules can become chapters, those kind of things. So there’s some shorter ways. But really it gets to be for me, before I write, I will have what I call like a core message, which is the main thing of my book that keeps me focused on it. Otherwise, I’m going to write 12 books in one. What is the main repurpose for this book? That’s what you do.

And then I’ll come up with kind of a chapter outline. Outline what my chapters will be, which are basically the journey you take them on to accomplish that core message. And then what I’ll have is I do a chapter summary within them. So I know what each chapter will be about.

And then set it up within your chapter, how you going to structure each chapter to make a congruent. Are you going to have a story? Then you talk about the lesson, then there’s another story. However, you’re going to do that, and you just stick to it. Get that done, by the time you go write, you’ve got a good idea. You just go and you whip it out. And that first draft, whip it out. Don’t stop and think, just put it out there. And then you can go back and edit. So yeah, most of it’s just believing that yes, you can do it and get started. Yeah.

Kayla: I absolutely love the point where you mentioned you can say it out and get it transcribed. And actually, the ad for this podcast episode is Descript, it’s the transcription software I use to make my transcripts for my podcast. And if anyone’s listening and you’re like, “Wow, this was insightful, that I can just start speaking and getting all transcribed,” you can check down to the show notes. There will be a link for Descript there, and it helps you sift out all the “ahs” “ums,” it edits your audio as you edit your transcription. It’s so great.

And honestly, until you mentioned this today, I didn’t even realize that that was a potential, but it makes complete sense. Because we’re creating content every day, whether we verbally say it or whether we write it. But there is software out there that can transcribe it. And then there’s just a little bit of editing and of course, maybe putting certain words, certain places. But you already have your book in you. It’s to get it out of you.

Chris: Yeah, because the first book I wrote, like I said, where I just wanted to like, “How do you do this? I’m going to learn the process by doing this.” I had written like hundreds of blog posts for my practice and a bunch of newspaper articles that really helped build my practice through blogging in that. And so what I did is I narrowed it down to the top 32. I wanted the top 10, but it doesn’t work like that. I got 32 of them and then I like redid them added more to it. And so those became the 32 lessons that are in that book. So it was basically already written, just putting it in and fine tuning it.

And like I said, that was the big thing that really put my practice to do well because people always hear about it. And the crazy thing is people go like, “Wow, you’re an author. Gosh, we should come speak at my place.” There’s something about it, that can definitely lead to more opportunities for you when you do that.

But yeah, instead of a business card sometime I’ve never done this, but instead of a business card it’s like, Hey, here’s my book.” And referral sources, some of them have my books in their lobby, so that works pretty well. Yeah.

How to Get Started with Writing Your Book

Kayla: I love that. Thank you so much for sharing that with us. And you actually have a special discount code for our listeners for your publishing course as well, don’t you?

Chris: Yes, I do. Because it’s a great thing if someone is really interested in doing that writing of that book and putting their stuff out there. And please do. Because if you’ve got it in you, man, the world wants to hear it. And if you’re looking for a way to, how do I do this? Where do I start? What do I do next? That would be where the Published course will guide you through and we’ll have the 10% discount code for you that people can definitely get. So yeah.

Kayla: Can you tell us a little bit about what’s in the publishing course now? Of course, I know because I’ve taken it and it is fabulous. But can you tell therapists and coaches who are listening who want to start writing a book. What they can expect to see in that course?

Chris: Yeah. You’re going to see stuff about getting your mindset right from the get-go, and then you sit down and you get it walked from there. People always ask, where do I start? What do I do next? And so you take a look at really sitting down and going, “Okay, I have my topic. What do I do next?

And then it can walk you into developing that core message. What is a core message? And why is it so important to have? Because if you don’t have that you’re going to write like an encyclopedia on the topic and no one’s going to want to read it. So the core message keeps you focused.

And then it can walk you into after developing that is being able to, okay, now let’s get your chapter outline set up. What does that look like? This is the journey or the lessons that you want to be able to have. And so it basically is a great way of walking people through the process. It’s like, “okay, just tell me what to freaking do,” and there you go. So it takes you through those steps to get yourself written that’s on there from there.

Kayla: Amazing. Yes. And for someone who’s been in your course, it’s really step-by-step. And like I said, even though I haven’t started writing, my first milestone was to get a podcast out and I have it out. So my next milestone now is to write a book. So your course is fabulous at helping guide me through that and that tip today about translating it is so helpful. Because sometimes it’s about sitting down and actually writing the content that can feel overwhelming, but being able just to talk about it and create the content and have software like Descript just translate it for you. Fabulous tip.

So, if you’re interested in signing up for a Chris’ Publishing course, check out kayladas.com/chrispublishingcourse.

That’s kayladas.com/chrispublishingcourse.

Or you can simply scroll down to the show notes and click on the link.

If you want to sign up for Chris’s course, please use the special coupon code for listening to this podcast, which is, PODCAST10.


Chris, thank you so much for taking the time out of your day to join us. It was so great having you on the show, teaching us about the three entrepreneurial lessons and tips on how to write a book.

Chris: Yeah, absolutely. And I really had a good time, really enjoyed it and I’m hoping that a lot of the listeners out there got some value from it. And you can always find me like on social media and stuff like that, or even in self-publishing Facebook group, the rhinowisom.com. Reach out if you have questions as well. I’m a very open person, so you definitely can.

Kayla: Amazing. Thank you so much. And thank you everyone for tuning in to today’s episode, and I hope you join me again soon on The Designer Practice Podcast.

Until next time, bye for now.

Podcast Links

Chris’ Published Course: kayladas.com/chrispublishingcourse

Chris’ Free Self-Publishing for Therapists, Coaches and Consultants Community:


Free Boosting Business Community: facebook.com/groups/exclusiveprivatepracticecommunity

Descript: kayladas.com/descript

Online Legal Essentials Legal Templates: kayladas.com/onlinelegalessentials

Use coupon code EVASPARE10 to receive 10% off any legal template pack.

Credits & Disclaimers

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The Designer Practice Podcast and Evaspare Inc. has an affiliate and/or sponsorship relationship for advertisements in our podcast episodes. We receive commission or monetary compensation, at no extra cost to you, when you use our promotional codes and/or check out advertisement links.

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