The Happiness Interviews: Petra Harries. Sales and Marketing Coach for Holistic Practitioners, Therapists, Healers & Coaches

"Linda has a very warm and empathic nature and I knew that I would feel safe enough to open up and share some very personal experiences, something I had struggled with when working with other practitioners.  She helped me to recognise the challenges in growing my business as adventures, and I’m now enjoying the journey and excited about what the future holds."  Petra Harries,

1. What ‘little things’ in your life make you happy?
Happiness is often to be found in the little things, I think.

I’ve got a board on Pinterest called “Grateful for the Little Things” with the description “I am grateful…The little things are not so little after all.”

Here are a few of the captions under the pictures I’ve pinned:
• Smelling the roses
• The feeling of lush, green grass under my bare feet
• Hugging
• Settling down under crisp, white sheets
• Soaking in a steaming hot bath
• Seeing a rainbow after the rain
• Afternoon tea & a chat with friends

The images I pin on Pinterest are able to engage my senses so that when I look at them I can really trigger the feelings, smells and tastes for a full whammy of what William Bloom calls “The Endorphin Effect”.
I recommend to my clients that they create their own boards on Pinterest. Creating a Business Vision board, for example, helps practitioners and coaches to focus on the lifestyle they want, the clients they want to work with, how they want to be working. Creating an Inspiration board can help with clarity around branding. If you can dream it, you can pin it!
Apparently, people choose images with the feeling part of the brain so creating a board can be a great way to get in touch with your values and passions. Having a visual image of what you want to achieve can help you start working toward your goals.

A creative exercise I used in my earlier life as teacher of English to foreign learners was getting my students to write poetry. This was based around the formula:

1. Choose an emotion
2. What colour is this emotion?
3. What does it smell like?
4. What does it taste like?
5. What does it look like?
6. What does it sound like?
7. What does it feel like?
8. Complete this sentence “[the emotion]is [adjective]”

For example:
Happiness is yellow.
It smells like the sun on skin
It tastes like zesty lime and soda
It looks like the face of a friendly dog
It sounds like children playing in water in summer
It feels like putting your cold feet in a pair of soft fluffy slippers
Happiness is contagious

The students really enjoyed tapping into their feelings and creating sentences around the senses. Some of them said they would be taking the idea back home with them.

2. Which particular people in your life make you happy and why?
When it comes to hanging out, I like to be with people who have a shared view on life. I do think, though, that everyone can teach us something when the moment is right and we are receptive to it.

3. What do you feel would give you more happiness in your life right now?
Being more self disciplined about meditating regularly. I also have some wonderful sound healing CDs and always feel better after I’ve listened to them. Getting out into nature more too. In essence, taking more time to unplug from everything is a direct line to greater happiness for me. Sometimes I need to remember to just do it!

Personally, when I am feeling down about something, I find positive affirmations don’t work as my low state at that moment is just too far from the meaning of the words in the affirmations. Instead I like to look for things that I am grateful for and this helps lift my mood. I start with things that my contrary, negative voice can’t argue with, such as: “This coffee tastes good” if I’m drinking coffee. I can then work my way up the scale, inch by inch if necessary, to a better, happier state.

I think it’s exciting that society at large seems to be opening itself up to more happiness and joy. Witness the home recordings of people singing and dancing to Pharrell Williams’ “Happy” and the Gangnam Style dancing phenomenom last year, the fact that major retailers are selling positive message wall art in their homeware departments and that images with uplifting messages are among the most popular and most shared tweets or posts on social media. The Southbank even had a Festival of Love very recently!

About Petra
My name is Petra Harries and I help holistic practitioners, therapists, healers & coaches to find the right sales and marketing strategies so they can get clear, get paying clients and grow their heart-centred businesses.

It’s incredibly rewarding to see people doing what they love and, at the same time, making a big difference to their own & their clients’ lives; I love my job! But.. there are so many talented people who are not out there helping their ideal clients. There are wonderful therapies, treatments, healing modalities and coaching approaches available to us at this time and people are actively searching for something more. It’s a great time to be a heart-centred entrepreneur.

I firmly believe that as a solopreneur you and your business are inextricably linked and because people can get stuck by limiting beliefs about themselves and working for themselves, I also use coaching tools and visualisations to help clients move forward. One of my favourite sayings is “Your clients need you now, not when you’re perfect.”

I have been an educator, a trainer, a sales & marketing manager and a director of a small business. In addition to this I am a Reiki Seichem practitioner and an animal healer. I am both an accredited small business coach and a personal transformation coach, having trained with The Animas Centre for Coaching.


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