After the painful experience of losing her mother to respiratory disease, Keli dove into into the field of natural health and earned her Doctorate in Naturopathy. Now, with over a decade of experience as a Holistic Wellness Practitioner, Keli creates a safe environment for her clients to experience their own transformation. Her interview inspires us to view our mistakes as our greatest teachers and to embrace to intention of using our lives to the highest purpose.
What inspired you to become a holistic entrepreneur?
My entire life’s path has lead to it really. Beginning with my love of psychology in high school, which lead to my interest in personal growth and development, which opened me up to metaphysics and spiritual work. The real turning point however was when my mom was diagnosed with emphysema in 1998 and crossed over two years later. Watching her suffer through respiratory disease made it very clear to me that western medicine had failed her, and it inspired me to dive into the natural health arena, eventually earning my Doctorate in Naturopathy.
Tell us about your business or practice.
I started my practice in 2000, with a focus on natural health as an herbalist, iridologist, and massage therapist. In 2008 I opened Alive & Well A Holistic
Center, that quickly grew into a community of 30 practitioners and teachers working together to serve our clients. By 2012 I realized that being a business owner was taking me away from my passion, so I closed the business and returned to private practice as a teacher and healer.
Over the years I have been blessed to partner with my clients in healing everything from pancreatic cancer, to broken relationships, to failing businesses, to loss of purpose.
What is your current business model?
I provide 1:1 services both in-person and virtually. I also teach classes and workshops, and do live (and virtual) speaking events. I do offer a Wellness Club for my clients who are committed to working with me regularly. And for my clients who are committed to making big changes and want to find balance in their lives, I offer a holistic life coaching program.
I am also in the process of creating a training program for people who are interested in becoming holistic life coaches.
What has been one of your favorite moments as a business owner thus far?
The past 15 years has been filled with cherished moments! Having clients tell me that they have confirmation that their cancer is gone. Or children tell me that they are now getting A’s in school “because it’s easy when your brain works!”
Seeing people awaken to their own healing power is amazing, and I feel honored every day to be part of their awakening.
What are some of the biggest challenges you have faced in running your business or practice?
The biggest challenge has been my own ego. Over the years I have had to learn to put aside everything I think I know, and to open myself up to be a channel for love and light (aka healing and knowledge) to come through.
Long ago I realized that “working for myself” was CRAZY! I mean, what did I know about owning a successful business? That day I decided that I would rather work for God/the Universe/Source because I knew that then (and only then) would I be using my life to fulfill the highest purpose…and I’ve been living happily ever after.
How do you find new clients?
It seems that my clients find me. Word of mouth from my existing clients is probably my greatest marketing tool. I always make sure they have a few of my cards on them in case they run into anyone who needs my help.
A couple of years ago Sam was out shopping with his wife. He mentioned to her that he wished God would send him someone to help him work through some emotional struggles he was having. They walked on a few steps and he looked down and saw a lady’s face staring up at him from a business card on the floor. He picked it up and saw “Keli Ackroyd, Teacher/Healer” and showed it to his wife. She laughed and said, “That was fast! There’s your answer…you better call her!” You’ll be happy to know Sam is currently creating his heaven on earth.
What have you found to be most effective in securing new clients to sign up for your services?
Being completely authentic with them. The number one confession I hear from my clients is “I have never told anyone this before…” which is a testament to the safe environment I maintain for people to let go and get their work done in. We laugh, we cry, it’s better than “Cats”.
What do you do to keep your existing clients engaged in the long term?
I have proclaimed “Wellness Wednesdays” and send out a weekly newsletter featuring my weekly KeliTV episode. In the episodes I give people answers to the questions they have about integrating their body, emotions, mind and spirit.
As your own boss, what is your best strategy for staying focused and productive during your workday?
Show up every day and be valuable to everyone on your path.
If you could start your business over again from the beginning, what would you do differently?
Nothing! And the reason for that is because I have learned from every mistake.
My advice would be to follow your heart, and do what you love. If fear comes up, acknowledge and release it, then follow your heart and do what you love. Take risks, be bold, but most importantly…be you!
What were some of the first mistakes you made that you would tell a new holistic entrepreneur to avoid?
I would never avoid making mistakes because they are our greatest teachers.
Be unstoppable…don’t give up on your dreams no matter what!
What are the top three business tools or resources you couldn’t live without?
- My website (Weebly.com)
What has been your most effective method for growing your business?
Having happy, healthy, fulfilled clients.
What is the craziest thing you’ve ever for done for your business?
Put my home on the line to fund the opening of my holistic center. Some people thought I was crazy, but I knew it would all be taken care of…and it was. I guess you could say I have a magical combination of faith and fearlessness.
What is your favorite indulgence?
At the moment it is homemade banana and mango ice cream with mini choc chips…yummy!
Most exotic thing you’ve ever eaten?
I love food and consider cooking an art that expresses my love of life. I don’t really know what people consider “exotic”…
Most memorable place you’ve ever visited?
Maui. The bamboo forest and seven sacred pools remind me of heaven.
Last book you read?
I read several at a time. Other than “A Course in Miracles” (which I have studied daily for over 20 years), I am currently reading “Start with Why” by Simon Sinek, and recently finished “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield, among other things…
If you could only have one kind of food for the rest of your life, it would be…
Salads…can’t get enough of those beautiful greens.
What is your go-to breakfast?
3 eggs scrambled in coconut oil with ½ of an avocado on top.
What do you find most fascinating about the human body?
That it is a self-healing organism. It will ALWAYS heal itself if its needs are fulfilled.
What do you love most about being an entrepreneur?
The freedom…personal, time, location, and financial freedom.
Keli Ackroyd is a Holistic Wellness Practitioner based out of Ft. Myers, FL. You can find out more about her and her business, Keli Ackroyd, Teacher-Healer, at www.KeliAckroyd.com.