Megan Chapa on How To Make A Business Out Of Your Passion (and a story about people who dress up like Mermaids) | PoP 391

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Megan Chapa on How To Make A Business Out Of Your Passion (and a story about people who dress up like Mermaids) | PoP 391

Do you have some big ideas that you just don’t have the time to work on? Where are you focusing your time? Want some tips on how to get started on making your passion a part of your business?

In this podcast episode, Joe Sanok speaks with Megan Chapa about making a business out of your passion.

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Meet Megan Chapa

Megan Chapa is the host of Travel Radio. The goal of her podcast is to connect travelers to travel professionals. Her hopes are that you find a new destination, style of travel or an adventure to add to your “bucket list”.

Find out more about Megan on her website, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

Megan Chapa’s Story

Megan is currently living in Oxford, UK while my husband finishes his DPhil at Oxford University. Her children think she is super “cool” for having a podcast and will do anything to sneak onto the show.

In This Podcast


In this podcast episode, Joe Sanok speaks with Joe Sanok speaks with Megan Chapa about making a business out of your passion and some actionable steps you can start taking today.

Following That Spark

If you’re starting your quest or your research based on something that’s already demanding on your time and that other people are already asking you to do, that might be an indication that there is and if there’s not, you need to find out why there’s not.

Getting Started

  • Get a personal support network setup as well as find a mentor/guide who has done it all before.
  • Starting the podcast came about as a result of realizing that there was there wasn’t that demographic or that audio option being offered.

Why You Should Niche

People will always assume that a specialist will be a generalist, but they won’t assume a generalist will be a specialist. If you go to a fancy restaurant, if they’re going to make a burger, some cheap burger, it’s probably going to be delicious. Whereas if you go to a burger place and you want crème brulee, it’s going to be gross

Where to Start

Well, I think make a list. Because who doesn’t like crossing things off the list.

Make a list, because who doesn’t like crossing things off the list. This is a business is plan, you need a business plan, whether it’s to make money, or if it’s just to get things moving, you need to make a business plan. And often that’s going to include a list, and you can look back and check off the list.

  • Make a list
  • Have a business plan
  • If you already have a business plan, go back and read it then tweak it by adding the things you want to do
  • Go through the motions of what needs to be done to get those new things up and running and see if it is something you can handle timewise.
  • Look at where you are spending your time and put some systems in place so that you can follow your big idea if you don’t have enough free time.

Useful Links:

Meet Joe Sanok

private practice consultant

Joe Sanok helps counselors to create thriving practices that are the envy of other counselors. He has helped counselors to grow their businesses by 50-500% and is proud of all the private practice owners that are growing their income, influence, and impact on the world. Click here to explore consulting with Joe.

Thanks For Listening!

Feel free to leave a comment below or share this podcast on social media by clicking on one of the social media links below! Alternatively, leave a review on iTunes and subscribe!

Podcast Transcription

[JOE SANOK] I recently signed up for Gusto. I was paying almost $150 a month to my accountant for payroll, and I’m saving so much money now. Gusto offers modern, easy payroll and benefits for small businesses across the country. They were even named Best Online Payroll by PC mag. Get three months free when you do your first payroll over at Don’t wait, now is the best time to get everything organized for 2020. That’s

This is The Practice of the Practice Podcast with Joe Sanok, session number 391.

[JOE SANOK] Welcome to The Practice of the Practice Podcast. I’m Joe Sanok, your host. I hope you are doing amazing today. For the last probably three or four months or so, I’ve been transitioning to a new accountant and also hired Greg Higdon as my bookkeeper. He’s been cleaning everything up and organizing it and been working to get everything set up in Gusto. It is so awesome to have other people do kind of the basics of your business, all of those things that, you know, every year, it’s like you do a little bit more to make it even better, you learn new things. Recently, after meeting Mike Michalowicz in late 2018, we first met and then I was on his show – he wrote this book Profit First. I’m recording this, obviously, way ahead of time from when this goes live, but just got all my bank accounts set up. I have a profit account, I have a tax account, I’ve got my conferences account, because you know, putting on things like Killin’It Camp, we have a lot of expenses that are due at different times, and you’ve got to make sure that the money can all stay separate so that you’re not surprised and owe money to the YMCA of the Rockies and then they’re like ‘You have to pay’ and you’re like ‘I don’t have the money’. Each year just making sure it’s a little more organized than the year before. And when you do that, when you see it as the long haul, that’s where you start to make really big steps forward. I see so many consultants and private practitioners out there, and they are just going full tilt, and there are times that you’ve got to sprint, you’ve got to kill it. But really, you’ve got to be in it for the long haul and to say ‘How am I going to build upon what I’ve already built upon every single year and make it even better?’

I was being interviewed on a podcast recently and they said ‘How did you get so many things from starting, growing to scaling a practice?’ Because you know, we have tons of free opt-ins for people to help them with resources, we’ve got our 1-year practice plan that’s $17 over at We’ve got Next Level Practice, Mastermind Groups, one-on-one consulting, conferences, all these things that basically starts from the moment you think you want to start a practice all the way until you’re scaling a multimillion-dollar practice. We want to have something for you at every single phase, that’s at a great price point, and also a great return on investment. So, he was asking about that and you know you just build it over time when you listen to your audience. Whether you’re building consulting or things outside of your practice, or you’re doing it within your practice, listening to the people that are already giving you money and that are already involved, is where you find business opportunities. It may be that you only do couples counseling, you only want to see people from the Gottman certified approach. But maybe they have kids, they’re fighting at home and they want their kids to be able to debrief with someone. So, you hire a play therapist, maybe part of it is that there’s some trauma, and that’s one of the places that things stem from for that couple. And so, you hire a therapist that does EMDR. And then you’ve got an empty office, and you’re like ‘Well, what if I sublease that office out to a massage therapist or a naturopath or someone who does acupuncture?’ And then next thing, you know you’ve got all these different income sources, and you’re helping a bunch more people. People are going to give their money somewhere, they’re going to go to therapy, they’re going to go see a massage therapist, they’re going to go do these things, it might as well be within your practice. And you can then say these are the values we hold. This is the kind of business we have. And it’s amazing and we can serve you. And so, I want to encourage you to continue to listen to whoever’s already giving you money. What is it that they want more of? What is it that they hope for, dream for? Where do they want to transition? Make sure you’re listening to them?
Well, we’re not just talking about this. Today, we’ve got Megan Chapa, I was on her podcast a bit ago. And we talked about that, and then now she’s on mine. She does travel stuff and really the things she does are so interesting and the business concepts we were able to bring back into private practice. I just love when we find people that on the surface, you say, there’s no way that even connects, that’s just crazy. But it’s amazing. So, she talks about all sorts of different ways that she found her passion. And she tells a really interesting story about people who dress up like mermaids. And there’s just so many nuggets in this podcast. So, stick around to the end, and I’ll talk to you soon. Without any further ado, here’s Megan.

[JOE SANOK] Well, today on The Practice of the Practice Podcast we have Megan Chapa. Megan is a host of travel Radio Podcast. She lives in Oxford, UK, with her family and is putting as much of it under her foot as possible. She helps professional travelers in a number of different ways. Megan welcome to The Practice of the Practice Podcast.

[MEGAN CHAPA] Thank you so much. It is a privilege to be here on the program today.

[JOE SANOK] Yeah, well, we connected a little bit ago when I was on your podcast. And I actually did that as a reverse podcast here back in Episode 383. So, if you guys haven’t listened to that, go back. That’s when Megan interviewed me about some behavioral techniques for your wild child when you’re on vacation and traveling. So that was a lot of fun and then I thought, yeah, let’s have Megan on my podcast.

[MEGAN CHAPA] Yeah, it was super helpful to have you on in the sense that I took a trip with my children and used some of your techniques. But I also have friends that have children with behavior issues, that were able to listen to it and kind of gleaned some tips for setting up successful travel, like in advance of just getting on the road and then coping like pre-planning and making it work and planning to have successful family time. So that was great. So, thank you very much for being on the show.

[JOE SANOK] Yeah, well, even like right after this immediately following our interview, I’m going home, my wife is packed up the car, we’re going camping and going to a music festival for the weekend. And last night, I was talking with my eight-year-old and she was getting her little suitcase together. And we were talking about like what it’s going to be like, so there’s going to be music and you might be sitting there and maybe you don’t like the music and you don’t feel like dancing. What do you think you’d like to do while there’s good music playing but you’re just sitting there. And so, she then kind of imagined herself in that situation and she was like ‘Well, I’d probably want a book. And I’d probably want one of my coloring books and I might want some of my little mermaid things.’ And so, she was able to talk through it and then she said ‘Can we bring the iPad?’ And I said no, camping and being in a festival is more about the experience than just being on our phones and stuff. And you’ll even see that I’ll put my phone away. It’s just so important to prep your kids when you do these things, to set them up and yourself. Because when your kids are going crazy it’s such a pain.

[MEGAN CHAPA] Yeah, and it’s so key to like whole family success and parental sanity.

[JOE SANOK] Well, you know, one reason I really wanted to have you on the show, and for a lot of the people listening, you’re like, wait, this is a private practice show. We’re building businesses, what does that have to do with travel? One thing that I’ve shared throughout for people that have listened; they may know this. But my first major travel experience on my own was right after my freshman year of college. I got a Euro rail pass and traveled alone for six weeks throughout Europe. I started in Dublin and had some friends there, then ended up flying out of Cologne, Germany. And to me, so much of what we talk about on Practice of the Practice is about defining the life you want, and then putting your private practice and your big ideas into that life. And so Megan, I’m really excited to ask you more about starting this podcast about what you’ve learned about travel, because I don’t know about you, but for me, travel just makes this world feels so much smaller, feels like we’re all humans, and we’re all trying to do our best and see how people live is so exciting for me. And we can go into some of the impact of travel on you. But take me back a few years. When did you first really start identifying travel as something that you wanted to put your time and energy into?

[MEGAN CHAPA] Yeah, so well, the podcast just turned two, just at the closing of May. So, the podcast is only two years old, but professionally, I’ve been working in the travel industry for about six years. But you know, kind of lifelong love of exploring because as we had discussed prior my dad was a Scoutmaster, and you were in the scouts. And so, my mom ran an explorer post, we have constantly been just out there adventuring. And then in college, I went to Messiah College and one of the things they like to do is send you on one or more study abroad. So, if they can, they just want to send you out there to get some real-world experience and exactly make the world smaller, identify with other cultures. So, one of the things that people were not taking them up on was the opportunity to study at a Kenyan University that my college and Wheaton College started called Day Star University. They have a campus in Nairobi and a campus at the river and everyone’s like ‘Why are you going to a place that doesn’t have running water at a school?’ And it was kind of like, well ‘Europe is going to be there, but I don’t know if Africa is going to be the way it is. So, I want to see that while it is kind of in its less attached lesser Westernised existence. So, I did that for six months, and then just took opportunities to keep going when there were disaster relief opportunities for Katrina and Rita. I headed down South for about six weeks, ended up quitting my job, but then had a commitment to a music festival. Actually, I used to play music festivals, and went home to fulfill the obligation and then met my husband, and then married my husband very shortly after. And he is a US Air Force officer and we have just been traveling ever since. And I got into the travel industry professionally because people said you are constantly on the move. Where are you going? What are you doing? And I was helping people plan their own trips and kind of said ‘Well, maybe I could do this as a living.’ And that’s how I got started. And here I am six years later, and it’s fantastic. And everyone is happy in the travel industry, there’s no politics, there’s just living vicariously through planning our client’s trips, and then also getting to do some amazing trips on our own. So, long and kind of short answer on that.

[JOE SANOK] So much of your story parallels mine. Instead of Africa, I went to Haiti for a while, and my mom helped with a medical clinic down there. And then I started a microfinance program and then volunteered in New Orleans for a while with people living with AIDS. Then when Katrina hit, volunteered, kind of after that but it was more on the fundraising side from Michigan and had a short engagement with my wife as well.

[MEGAN CHAPA] And we have kids the same age.

[JOE SANOK] Well, let’s start with when you were realizing that you were helping friends with travel, and you said, you know what, maybe there’s something here that I could have as a profession… I think there’s a lot of people listening that may have some sort of big or little idea. It could be something like I’m in my counseling sessions, and I’m helping people with trauma or couples. And I feel like there’s something bigger here that I’m going over and over and over. Or like even my wife, Christina, she just recently started doing Instagram lives just talking about what it’s like to have been a stay at home mom, and now transitioning out of that. Our two daughters are going to be in full-time school in the fall and she thinks she might want to do something online. So, people like that, that feel that little spark inside of them. What did you learn when you were realizing that there was a skill set there that went from just helping your friends to maybe there’s something professional? Like, what did you explore, what kind of books or podcasts helped? What kind of exercises can you take us through that help at that spark moment?

[MEGAN CHAPA] Well, first off, your wife is going to have like mother’s New Year, and you should be prepared for that. Like she’s going to throw a party when her kids go to school, and you should be ready, it’s coming.

[JOE SANOK] I’ll make sure she listens to this and knows that it’s a stay at home mom party.

[MEGAN CHAPA] So I feel like I’m even about to be on this quest myself again. Because my first was when I did not have children and I was just moving constantly. And at that point, podcasts were not huge, but Amazon was becoming really big. And so, the availability of books on Kindle and audiobook started to become available, and then also YouTube. There’s just so much free material out there. And, you know, just absorb as much of that as you can first. Also realize that you’re going to be getting a lot of opinions, especially with YouTube and like kind of more indie blog-type stuff. But you do want to look at one, is there a need for this surface? And if you’re starting your quest or your research based on something that’s already demanding on your time and that other people are already asking you to do, that might be an indication that there is and if there’s not, you need to find out why there’s not.

[JOE SANOK] So I want to pause you because I think that’s such great advice. I know, when I first started out, I thought if there’s nothing there, then that means there’s an opportunity. And if there’s a lot of people in this space, well that’s just competition. And I love that you flipped that, if people are already making money off of this and already making content and doing it, that’s a great indicator that there’s space for a new voice in there.

[MEGAN CHAPA] And in the travel industry, people kind of thought, you know, era happened. And when that happened, travel agents and travel planners went by the wayside. However, the storefronts closed up, but the travel planning industry is actually kind of huge. And the really interesting trend is to observe how millennials are spending their money. They are kind of ‘I have other things to do, planning, travel is exciting, I know I want to go someplace, but I don’t have the time or knowledge base to get done. Also, the internet’s pretty scammy, so let me hire a travel professional.’ And when I say hire, that’s kind of a loose way to say it, because most travel professionals are not actually charging a fee because there is a commission built into most travel products. I know you’re talking to mental health professionals, but pair yourself with a good travel professional, because traveling is, I think, really powerful for mental health in the sense that it gives relief and time for your brain to kind of chill out and relax. All the things we kind of talked about our on our last episode.

[JOE SANOK] Something we talk about a lot on here is outsourcing. We outsource our bookkeeping and we outsource our phone calls and our calendars, to even say I want to outsource some of my travel plans instead of spending every evening for the next three weeks figuring out the best hotel to stay in… That having someone who has done that before might be a way that I can outsource that.

[ MEGAN CHAPA] Yeah, 100% true, and I think it’s just fun to research online. Yeah, but at the same time, you know, anybody can put up a website, and you can get a canned website and just put payment information on there. And as fun as it is to play around, you know, when it comes time to book it, have +someone that wants to partner with you not just necessarily take over, and that they can advise you in making a good travel investment. Because there are some really scammy sites out there. And there are hotels that have pictures that are 10 years old, you want someone who’s knowledgeable in that region, and maybe specifically has been to that hotel, or area or can point you to someone who has. Because even if I don’t know, like, I don’t know, Cuba, but I have a lot of clients that want to go to Cuba. But that’s not my area of expertise. And yeah, it’s good money at the same time, I don’t want to put them in a compromised situation, because I’m not an expert in that area and I will even pass that along.

[JOE SANOK] Yeah. So, when you were getting that going, and you’re watching some YouTube videos, reading books, what were your first steps to saying, okay, I want to launch this idea? And then when did you start saying I think a podcast might be that next step? Take us through the start-up into the growth phase.

[MEGAN CHAPA] So, starting up, I said to my husband is this crazy? There are association fees, there are insurance fees, there’s all sort of things. And you know, at first, while I’m still learning this, and before I have my first client, this is going to cost X, Y, and Z. It was giving my husband my plan and saying ‘Is this something you support?’ And I had already identified the travel agency that I wanted to work with which is Ticket To Travel in California, and the lady who owns that, I told her ‘I’m going to move a lot and you’re going to get a new address for me every two years, maybe every year, I don’t know’. And she said ‘That’s no problem. Tell me what you need to be successful’. This was now having a sounding board. I identified my support system: my husband, and the agency owner. She had also written a book, that’s how I started researching her. I had read a book on the profession and getting started, it was a book on how you can make a million dollars and this is how you can lose a million dollars in the travel industry. I read her book and then had discovered through doing additional online research that she had her own agency. I identified that she was who I wanted to work with, wrote to them, sent my resume, interviewed, essentially got a contract as an independent contractor with them. And then have a very candid conversation about what I need to be successful and she was really willing to be a mentor to me. I guess the first steps were getting my support network setup.

[JOE SANOK] You had your kind of personal support network in your husband, but then you found a weekly call guide, mentor consultant, she was helping you join the industry because she had been there. She had done it and so you didn’t have to take as much time jumping in.

[MEGAN CHAPA] Yeah, absolutely.

[JOE SANOK] So then when did the podcast kick-off? Take us through that.

[MEGAN CHAPA] Probably four or five moves later into my husband’s Air Force career, I was still pursuing all those things. And when you get into travel, a lot of people specialize. I know someone who does all Italy trips, and I have someone who does very niche, very boutique winemaking introductory cruises, in a sense that they take a winemaker and all of their boutique wines onto one of these lovely cruise lines, a higher-end cruise line. And all of their guests will experience the food pairings with these very niches or small-batch wines. And they do that for an entire week. If there’s an interesting bent on travel, or you can think of it, it’s out there. Scuba wine tasting…

[JOE SANOK] Is there Scuba at a wine tasting?

[MEGAN CHAPA] Oh there is, there is even a merman and mermaid, they do larping which is live-action role play. You see these guys in the Knights costume? Yeah, so if you can imagine getting a 50-pound metallic, merman/mermaid tail through customs and trying to explain what that is. There are whole groups that take these suits, and go to tropical locations and have week-long merman/mermaid larping events. If you can think of a type of wild, niche kind of travel, those things exist. And the podcast came about because I know these travel professionals that do these really interesting trips. There are minimum numbers you have to meet in order to make this thing work financially. So sometimes they wouldn’t have the numbers to make that work, and then later, I’d be having conversations at parties or something like that and people would say, if I knew that type of travel existed, I would take that trip. But then the opportunity had passed and either canceled and they didn’t get on it.
I started to get into listening to podcast myself and really for learning about destinations while I was walking my dog and all these sorts of things. But most of the podcasts that were out there, and they’re needed, but they’re mostly on how to travel on a budget or something along those lines like scrimping like how to travel on $10 a day. But those aren’t my clients, my clients are young professionals or older folks, or however you want to say that, but people that have money to invest in a vacation. And I realized that there was there wasn’t that demographic or that audio option being offered. I started interviewing the people that I know that offer these really interesting trips, and help them create a mark. It’s really that I’m helping them create a marketing product for themselves, at the same time, it’s really interesting content. And you might just discover either a new destination that you didn’t know about, a type or style of travel that you didn’t know about, or figure out a way to check off a bucket list item that you didn’t know how to do. Like I have a guide for hiking to the base camp of Mount Everest, he also does all the summits. So, there’s a lot of options.

[JOE SANOK] Oh yeah, I did that.

[MEGAN CHAPA] I AM sure that you found us when you’re looking.

[JOE SANOK] Oh, my word, try to do that in 2000 vs now.

[MEGAN CHAPA] And now you go on these web pages. And there are concerns for both your safety and being good to the local community. Who do you choose? And so, I know this guy, and he has a great reputation, he’s very, in touch with the local people, and being good to their community. I interviewed him, and that means a wildly successful episode. And I hope that it’s a resource for someone that might have chosen one of these very budget level trips, to choose to go on one that costs more, but that benefits the community you’re going into. And also, with using a guide, who cares for you, and has whatever your goal and motivation for traveling to Mount Everest is, he wants to help you accomplish it. So anyway, I hope that it’s

[JOE SANOK] I want to hear other interesting travel, what are a couple of other trips that you’ve interviewed people that they planned.

[MEGAN CHAPA] I have one couple that I know that plans these golf tournaments for couples around the world. They take 20/30/50 couples,
they book out an entire golf course for a weekend. And they do these couple tournaments all around the world. I also have burlesque and pole dancing competitions, which end up actually being like a sport, very competitive. Some of the burlesque does get provocative, but the pole dancing is almost like ballet/gymnastics kind of thing. Yes, it’s incredible. So, we have we have people that do those. And then this lady that does all Italy trips is incredible. She loves Italy so much she learned the language, and now she only takes people to Italy. And she knows the region so well, that there are people that will only go to Italy with her. There’s a lot of culinary options out there, there are culinary clubs that travel. One club is all for women, so women whose husbands maybe are travelling or working a lot, and so they don’t have a partner to travel with. Or just maybe your spouse has died, or maybe they just are single person, they want to travel with a group of ladies, I have one of those clubs. And then on the single front, there is a group called Singles International Travel, and that’s a travel agency in Florida, and they only travel with single people. And they have had as a result, many marriages happen, but they specifically are for single people to travel and meet other single people that like to travel. And they do, they might do 20 trips a year where they have different locations that they’re taking people to. And then, of course, Scuba and Golf are popular.

One thing that is maybe appealing to you is a river cruise through Europe. I interviewed a guy, but it is co-branded I should say with the Whiskies of The World Group. Even though you’re not in whiskey region, the entire cruise focuses on whiskey, scotch, bourbon education. Each night, you have your wine pairing at dinner, and then post-dinner, you have whiskey education, as all included. But if you hadn’t gone with this specific travel professional who’s planning it, you both wouldn’t know about it. And even if you just showed up on that cruise, because you booked it directly with the river cruise company. It’s only included if you go through this through Whiskies of The World and this guy, Matt. Then there’s like eco-travel, there’s just so many options.

[JOE SANOK] One of the questions I always get from people and I can’t talk about it enough is, why should I niche, why should I have a specialty, I want to help everybody? And what I often say is, people will always assume that a specialist will be a generalist, but they won’t assume a generalist will be a specialist. If you go to a fancy restaurant, if they’re going to make a burger, some cheap burger, it’s probably going to be delicious. Whereas if you go to a burger place and you want crème brulee, it’s going to be gross.
I imagine that your friend who focuses just on Italy gets more repeat customers. I’m not sure about her profit structure and how that works but I imagine she makes more money than the average person because she specialized. I imagine that she enjoys it more because it’s what she enjoys anyway.

So, even though we’re talking travel, when we talk about business, we’re talking about business. And so those of you listening saying ‘Wow, someone figured out how to make a living off of helping people be merman and mermaids. That’s incredible’. The amount of creativity that we can have in our careers is immense. And even just how I put on Slow Down School, this event in Northern Michigan where high achieving therapists come and hang out on the beaches and we go hiking to my favorite places…. Just yesterday, I was talking to one of our Slow Down Schoolers and she’s a repeat person. She said ‘Can’t we can’t just come to Traverse City right now. I just want to be there. I wish it was time for Slow Down School’. It’s so much more fun as a professional to do the stuff you love.

[MEGAN CHAPA] I have one girl, speaking of doing what you love, she’s very a passionate Catholic and she exclusively plans, pilgrimages. So we have a couple of episodes on different pilgrimages she’s planned around the world include including Oberammergau, which if you look at it spelled out, it’s crazy because the Germans just bought all their words together. But Oberammergau is this every 10-year Passion play that they put on and the entire town is involved?

[JOE SANOK] Oh, yeah.

[MEGAN CHAPA] Yes, and you cannot participate in the Passion Play unless you’ve lived there a minimum of four years. And once you get assigned to the role, you have to live in character for an entire year. And so, they’ll send Jesus and His Apostles to Israel, to study and learn the history and the life of their character. And that’s all she does, is planning these Catholic pilgrimages. And you might not think that there was money to be made there. But she’ll go into a congregation and say this is my passion. And if you wanted to go to Israel, or to do the walk in the steps of St. Patrick, I would love to help you plan that out. So, she took this passion and when she ended up being a stay at home mom with her kids, she still wanted to work a little bit and so this is what she brainstormed to make her passion meet her profession. And it’s been very good for her.

[JOE SANOK] So what do you think that people need to know about travel, podcasting going after big ideas? Where would you want them to kind of take the first steps? If someone’s saying, wow, this is really inspiring. I want to go after something. Yeah, I can go watch some YouTube videos, I can get started. But what else would you encourage them to do so that within a year from now, they can at least have explored their big idea, if not, have started to launch something?

[MEGAN CHAPA] Well, I think to make a list. Because who doesn’t like crossing things off the list. This is a business is plan, you need a business plan, whether it’s to make money, or if it’s just to get things moving, you need to make a business plan. And often that’s going to include a list, and I like to look back and check off the list. Even if it’s read 10 books on the subject, you get to cross that off. So, I can make a list and then look at how to make a business plan, which I’m sure all the people listening to your podcast have already done, they’re probably somewhere in there. But if they haven’t, maybe go back and read their business plan, tweak it and add on to it, podcast, blog, whatever it is. And then maybe, just the act of going through creating an episode, creating a blog, to see if it’s going to fit into their business plan. Because, again, we talked about outsourcing, there are lots of people that can write, and there are lots of people that can run businesses. But just because you like the idea doesn’t mean you’re talented, it’s time-consuming. So, you might just partner with someone who’s excellent in writing, that can interview you, and take your words and put them into the blog post. So, I would say go through the motions once to see if it’s something that you can handle time-wise.

[JOE SANOK] With a lot of things you’re going to get better at it too. About a year ago, I went back and listen to Episode One of this podcast, and the amount that I was like trying to prove myself or kind of say, like, yeah, I should be in this space and listing accomplishments… I annoyed myself. You’ve got to start somewhere. The only thing I would add is, especially because our listeners are private practitioners, in your private practice if you are so busy, that you can’t carve out two to four hours a week to work on your big idea, you really have to evaluate why am I that busy? If you have this passion, you need to start outsourcing things, create systems – that can be through technology or virtual assistants. Just in the last month, there are two jobs that I had posted through Practice of the Practice, one was for a personal assistant job to help us kind of take a little bit more of an effort there. And then we also hired an Airbnb cleaner for our Airbnb. And I was shocked at how easy it was to post a job through Facebook. I probably got four or five quality applicants, and probably 10 decent applications within 24 hours. And so, and they’re not a sponsor, I don’t think Facebook sponsors anything because they don’t need to.

But I feel like it’s so easy now to say, here’s what I want, I want someone to check my email so that I can free up an extra two hours a week, and just say I want someone that’s going to hop into my email for 30 minutes a day, five days a week, that you can sketch that out. And that can free up that time. So, you’ve got to look at those systems so that you can actually put that time into those things that help you really get to that next level. I would definitely add that in for our particular audience so that you free up that best quality time for your big idea. And it doesn’t just get the scraps when you know you’re burned out and tired at the end of the week.

[MEGAN CHAPA] Can I jump on that? Here’s my own personal feeling on this as far as direction that I would love your private practitioners to venture out in. There was just a survey that was put out, I think it was on and it said that the most underemployed demographic in the United States is the military spouse. And because this is something that I’m passionate about, I would say, could you call your local Air Force Base or go on, you know, military installation and say, I’m looking for someone who has five to 10 hours a week, because that’s my probably what one of these military spouses who’s moving with her children constantly has. They have some nighttime hours to do to this sort of thing, or maybe some daytime hours while their kids at work. Or there’s also a website called the Military Spouse Employment Partners, MSEP and they’ll talk to you about how-to best interface with military spouses. Because a lot of gals, like myself are coming out of college, they have been working a couple of years, they married their wonderful military husband and then they have this degree that they just can’t use, and they want to be valuable, and they want to use this degree. So, if you have the option to reach out to a military spouse, please do that, because they want to work. And they need someone with a little bit of flexibility to work with our crazy lives, but they have valuable skills. And they want to, they want to use the skills that they have. So

[JOE SANOK] That’s such a great point and I’m going to go off at that point because there are so many things that a private practice owner thinks they’ve got to get done. And so, you think about even writing regular blog posts or checking your email or making sure your calendar has all the details you need for a meeting. Or if you’re starting to explore going launching a podcast, maybe you want to get interviewed on a podcast, these are all things that don’t need a location. There are very few things with a private practice that needs a location-dependent person, we’ve never had an actual front desk person that says, Hey, welcome to Mental Wellness Counselling. In fact, our very first assistant, she was down in Texas and our practice is up here in Michigan and so what’s great about a military spouse is that they can be anywhere doing this work. And actually, we have three assistants now in Cape Town, South Africa, I love that I can send a message at night as I’m going to bed if I have an idea or something, and they’re six hours ahead of me, and so I’ll wake up and they’re like, we got it all done. Can you review it? The time change is awesome for me.

[MEGAN CHAPA] That’s incredible. And well, I appreciate that plugin, because I do know women who had degrees in psychology and sociology and when you move as we move, you can’t use it. So, if you want someone to write a blog post, you might just have a resource in someone who already has a degree, but has the unfortunate situation of moving and frequently.

[JOE SANOK] The last question that I always ask is if every private practice owner in the world, were listening right now, what would you want them to know?

[MEGAN CHAPA] That the world is a big place, and that travel helps make the world smaller and that we have much more in common with people in other countries than we realize. If it’s in your heart to encourage a client to travel, yeah, it’s good. It’s good. I feel like Sandra Bullock in Miss Congeniality where she says, you know, with all the contestants are answering world peace. But truthfully, through identifying with people in other cultures, I think that we could have a little bit of world peace.

[JOE SANOK] Megan, if people want to listen to your podcast, or connect with you more, what’s the best way for them to connect with you?

[MEGAN CHAPA] Yep, it’s And I am And I’m on Twitter as chapatravel CHAPATRAVEL. And I do love Twitter.

[JOE SANOK] Awesome, and we’ll have links to all of that in the show notes in case you missed any of those references or websites. Megan, thanks so much for being on The Practice of the Practice Podcast.

[MEGAN CHAPA] Alright, thanks so much for having me.

[JOE SANOK] For me travel has been one of those things that I just can’t get enough of. Whether it was when I was in the Boy Scouts in High School, going Scuba diving places or right after my first year of college, traveling Europe for six weeks just on my own meeting random people, going on mega road trips with my wife or you know, this thing that we are sort of loosely planning. I’ll keep you updated in regards to getting a camper and just traveling the US. Travel is one of those things that the memories, the experiences, it just keeps on giving. And so, I want to encourage you to take some time to slow down, to put vacations on your calendar, have those adventures with your kids or your friends or your partner. It gives you a perspective on life that if you just keep working and saving money, it just doesn’t feel as lively as full of life. So, go do something interesting and I want to hear about it.

I want you to tag me on Instagram with some cool pictures and it’s just practiceofthepractice, tag me, I want to see these amazing pictures of you having adventures. Super huge thanks to Gusto. Gusto is an amazing payroll services, I use them, they help with making sure all my payroll and taxes and things get pulled out like they’re supposed to. Go over to and you’re going to get three months free. I have loved using them and especially if I hadn’t sold my practice, if I had W2’s I would totally use it. It would save me so much time and money compared to using a typical accountant. It is awesome. So Thanks for letting me into your ears and into your brain have an amazing week.

This podcast is designed to provide accurate authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It’s given with the understanding that neither the hosts, the publisher or the guests are entering legal, accounting, clinical or other professional information. If you need a professional you should find one. Thanks to the band Silence Is Sexy for your intro music. We love it.