Name: Ketaki Thanki
Title: Founder & CEO
Organisation: Towards A Better You
To begin, I'm the Founder & CEO of a Wellness company. I'm a Wellness Counsellor and an Artist. My only wish is to provide a compassionate and non-judgmental space for my clients, be it individual sessions, workshops, or retreats. Early in my life, I realized that every individual faces difficult situations and circumstances at various stages of their life. We often neglect the areas that cause an imbalance and block the free flow of love, light, and happiness in our lives. As a free spirit, I felt the need to find ways to help me connect with the deep wisdom of the Universe and use holistic practices to guide towards the dimensions of wellness.
Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!
I hope Ketaki's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!
1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?
Since I am in the Mental Health field, the biggest challenge has been to constantly take care of my overall well-being. I have seen how not being mindful can take a toll on a person, and now, since my company and the job require me to be there for people, it becomes all the more challenging. And because we were never taught how to take care of our mental and emotional state, our body and mind have to be pushed to pour in self-love, care, and compassion towards ourselves first.
2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?
I come from a Gujarati family that is business-oriented, so it is no surprise that I grew up seeing leadership qualities in those around me. But besides that, I have also experienced the feeling of helplessness, which has taught me to take control in terms of my life, career, relationships, etc. It happened when one of my acquaintances and I were in conversation about starting a space where people could gain awareness and knowledge. A space that gives them clarity, a space from where they can strengthen themselves and elevate to another place. That's when I felt this deep intuition and connection toward my company name: "Towards A Better You," because change begins with you!
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
I strongly believe everything happens for a reason, and because I'm an artist, I have never been a person to have a strict structure in my life. I love it when things flow and fall into place. However, I do prefer to have a rough schedule.
My day starts, and I don't check my phone. I head for a quick shower, followed by my prayers and affirmations, and spend some quiet time with myself. After breakfast, I check for tasks that have been completed or need my attention in terms of priority. Next, I have a meeting with my Brand Strategist where we discuss the milestones we want to achieve and set a plan of action for the same, followed by my sessions scheduled with my clients. After lunch, I go to the NGO where we have our group therapy session with my resilient ladies who teach me so much every session. I'll have a quick check on the posts going out on all my social media accounts which spread awareness. I end my day with my training, hit the gym, and release all the stress and heavy feelings I have picked up from people, allowing me to be more present in the now. Before hitting the bed, I sit and reflect again, doing a small gratitude ritual by asking myself, "What went well today?" which helps me feel grounded and content with myself and my efforts.
4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?
Make sure you treat people with respect, which should include yourself as well, and that there's always a better way of saying things.
5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?
"The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari" by Robin Sharma. I believe to become a leader, you need to first lead your own life. You are consciously or subconsciously reflecting who you are as a person in your actions and behaviors, in the way you treat people, your perception, values, and your circle; all of it is who you are within. Once you understand this and take charge of connecting with yourself, it is only then that you will lead people in a certain direction. You will know what drives people because it's the same thing that drives you.
6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?
Learn to be secure with yourself. You are reading this interview for a reason, which means there is something within you that is searching for validation. However, it's already within you.
7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?
I knew this girl who struggled academically, feeling insecure in her capabilities after high school. However, as she danced her way through life in a quest to learn more about life and her purpose, something shifted. She found a master's degree that was made for people like her, a space that showed her all the reasons she was loved and where she mattered. She then went looking for a job where she could spread love and light to the world. Neither the jobs nor the colleges were made for her, so she paved her own way and started a space that could give people all she wanted to provide. Who is she, you ask? She is ME!