Michelle Mehta had been working in the corporate world for many years, feeling unfulfilled and unchallenged. She knew there was a missing puzzle piece in her life ready to be discovered.
Mehta experienced many challenges and setbacks during her journey before finding her true calling as a Motivational Speaker and Certified Professional Coach.
“I had this ‘out of the box’ dream to be a motivational speaker and did not know how it was going to turn out,” Mehta told me.
With a degree in finance and marketing, Mehta worked in sales and sold financial products and services for a few years. During her early career, she experienced a few layoffs and decided to eventually break up with Corporate America. She took her first coaching class and fell in love with the idea of empowering and changing lives through affirmations and supportive coaching methods.
Mehta first began her career as a Professional Coach and Motivational Speaker in 2015 after learning about the Co-Active Training Institute. With the help from amazing coaches, mentors, and peers, she was able to make her dream career as a motivational speaker and coach a reality.
She began working with women and realized the importance of supporting teenagers who struggled with self-esteem, confidence, and other issues after being invited to present at a Career Day event at her former middle school.
During her presentation, she had asked the students to raise their hands if they have ever had “evil voices in their heads.” Mehta was shocked to see every hand raised in the room. She knew there was work to be done to help boost the confidence level among youth.
“There were 100 students that day and every single hand went up. I was shocked and surprised, and made a decision that these teens need me and I will do whatever takes to help [them] overcome the evil voices.”
Inspired by the overwhelming response to students battling negativity and their inner demons, Mehta decided to specialize as a “Teen Confidence Coach” to empower youth.
“I call it Teen Confidence Coaching because teens lack self-confidence as they are passing through puberty and many of them lose motivation to get good grades as a result of it. The teens begin to lose their own self-worth, sense of belonging and start feeling like they are not good enough as the stress of fitting in becomes a bigger issue.”
Often, the foundation of adulthood is based on our childhood and the way we react and respond to our middle and high school years shapes our adulthood, says Mehta. “If the issues of self-confidence, self-worth, and not feeling good enough are not addressed in the teenage years, it makes it harder in adult life to overcome struggles and challenges,” she added.
That’s why Mehta teaches teens how to stand in their power and recite affirmations out loud on a daily basis, or whenever those insecure or imposter feelings creep up. These affirmations include power words and phrases that the teens are told to recite in front of the mirror: “I am confident. I am loved. I am smart. I got this. I know I can do it.”
As Mehta goes through these exercises during her sessions, she can see how the teens she works with exude confidence through their body language. She can see that they are feeling empowered, and that’s what makes her work so rewarding and fulfilling.
“The goal is to help them shift their thinking from negative thoughts to positive thoughts. That is where I come in to remind them of their greatness. These teens are smart and intelligent, and have what it takes to be successful, and if the support system is not strong enough, it can very much backfire on them.”
Mehta’s teen coaching sessions are based on a 3-month plan, where she discovers the teens’ goals, implements their core values, and integrates healthy boundaries between their parents and peers.
“I aim to teach the teens’ self-confidence, higher self-worth, feeling good enough, and always remember to be in a state of gratitude.” Some of the common topics that are brought up by the teens she works with include insecurities about physical appearances, and feeling inadequate at school or disconnected and lonely.
Mehta was recently published in an international bestselling book, “Yes I Can!” and continues to impact hundreds of people through her coaching. Some of the highlights of her career have been interviewing Deepak Chopra, former Mexican President Vincente Fox, among others.
Part of the reason why Mehta decided to specialize in this area of Teen Coaching was because of the spike in bullying incidents among youth, and the constant pressure on youth and teens that feel as though they are unworthy or need to fit a certain mold.
These days, youth are under a lot of pressure to “fit in,” says Mehta, who shares that social media often adds to the issue because teens often feel the desire to look, dress, and act a certain way especially after skimming through celebrity feeds. They often fall into the trap of comparing their lives to others and begin to lose their self-confidence and self-worth.
Growing up in an Indian American household, Mehta shared her own experiences of being bullied in middle and high school. She recalled that in her early teen years, some of her friends made fun of her for giving hugs and compliments. There were also times when she felt insecure about the way her body looked, and also failed a majority of her classes before stepping into her self-worth and realizing the importance of practicing self-love and confidence.
Today, Mehta has channeled her early experiences of being bullied into learning opportunities to help empower youth and encourage them to own their power and individuality.
“I realized that what I struggled with was extremely painful and made me a stronger person. I am motivated to inspire and encourage the youth to not let their insecurities from their childhood affect their adulthood. The insecurities that began at a younger age make a lasting impact as the child gets older.” – Michelle Mehta
Some of the reasons why Mehta enjoys the work she does is because she believes that youth and teens are the future. Sometimes they just need the right guidance and support system in place to get on track and feel confident about themselves.
Through this journey of life, Mehta says the universe has delivered amazing coaches, mentors, and peers to help make her dream career a reality. She is grateful for the opportunity to make an impact through her teen coaching sessions, and for the incredible feedback she receives from parents and teens.
Mehta’s biggest takeaway is to always trust your gut feeling and to “keep your eyes, ears, and heart open, as you never know what opportunity will be knocking on your door.”
-Written by Monica Luhar @monicaluhar