Serena Williams & Evolution - What's next at ?

Updated: Aug 11

Picture Source: Luis Alberto Rodriguez, Vogue. Edited in Canva


Dear Friend,

It has been a while. I hope your summer was all you hoped for.

I have thought of writing emails to you many times during this period - specifically about how our worlds are changing with respect to human rights and why nervous system regulation is now more important than ever before.

Today I read Serena Williams' retirement announcement. I admit I had that all too familiar feeling in the throat and tears welling up towards the end.

It felt raw, honest, and vulnerable.

And when you read beyond, what really struck me was her speaking about decisions. You see, this is something we high-achievers go through in our lives in career, parenting, and partnerships.

Things we need to succeed out in the world and in careers are - attitudes of persistence, never giving up, perfectionism and control, and a feeling of having one foot out the door, hunting for what's next, a lot of times fueled by the “I am/this is not good enough” mentality.

All the above traits definitely made her GOAT - which my teenage nephew tells me is what kids call the “greatest player of all time”.

And, here is that exact paradox for us high achievers - these traits often get in the way of what we need to have really fulfilling deeper personal relationships - whether with our partners or in parenting.

In particular, this paragraph of her letter, stood out and really, really deeply resonated with me :

“I think tennis, by comparison, has always felt like a sacrifice—though it’s one I enjoyed making. When you’re younger, you see kids having fun, and you want to do that stuff but you know you have to be on the court, hoping that one day it will all pay off. I got pushed hard by my parents. Nowadays so many parents say, “Let your kids do what they want!” Well, that’s not what got me where I am. I didn’t rebel as a kid. I worked hard, and I followed the rules. I do want to push Olympia—not in tennis, but in whatever captures her interest. But I don’t want to push too hard. I’m still trying to figure out that balance.”

You see, my sister and I were raised in a household that put a lot of focus on achievement, pushing yourself to do better, and on success and accolades - we have many Ivy League degrees between us to show for this upbringing.

I am very grateful for those traits, and it got both of us to where we are - I find myself bringing certain aspects of that upbringing to my work as a nervous system coach even today, with a level of intensity that means a lifelong love of learning, continuously investing in upgrading your skills and so on.

And then there are these same traits that we carry over to our personal lives - in relationships, with friends, family, and with our children. You see attachment, relationships, and nurturing, almost need the opposite skillsets - cooperation vs competition, flow/spontaneity vs control, and so on.

And it's not really until we become parents or think of becoming parents, that we really grapple with how much these ideas come in the way of really connecting with people, and how sometimes pushing too much or bringing perfectionism and not-good-enough to our relational world can come at a big cost to the nervous system and that of our loved ones, including chronic autoimmune conditions, sleeplessness, panic attacks and more.

This note from Serena today is a great Segway to give you a sneak peek into what we have been working on these past three months.

We are now transitioning to working with high-achieving, successful people to build deeper and stronger connections- with themselves, with partners, with parenting, and at work.

This offering will be a 1:1 coaching program, where I will be working with you to build awareness of your own nervous system, go deep into these patterns of perfectionism/people pleasing, and more, and help you get a quantum leap in your personal growth journey.

If you are an existing therapy client, nothing changes for you - I will continue to see you for the same rates for as long as you need to see me.

I am not taking new therapy clients at this time or in the future but instead, if you want to get waitlisted for my new program so you can be the first to get to know the details, you can do that by completing a form, please email and we will send one your way.

Who is it for?

  • Action takers that are ready to invest significantly - financially, emotionally, and time-wise in themselves and their current or future children, make big shifts in areas of career, partnerships, and parenting.

  • High achieving, successful, busy people who owe their success to staying hypervigilant and having perfectionist tendencies and also realize that they are ready to have quantum shifts towards building deeper bonds with children and partners, deepening into clarity/choice of partner/career, and finding true purpose beyond external accolades.

  • People that have a certain level of self-awareness, maybe a geeky cognitive consuming of internet/social media neuroscience content but are struggling to put it in practice e.g. emotional regulation during conflicts with children or partner, and are ready to invest in a trusted mentor to show them the way.

  • People who realize therapy takes as long as it does but there are some big shifts that a “Theracoaching” model offers, such as more autonomy for you as a client in a structured time-bound way, and are ready for it.

Who is it NOT for?

  • People who are in the “world wronged me so why should I invest in my healing ?” phase.

  • People who are expecting magic bullets and quick fixes.

  • People who are expecting saviors or external “experts” to make decisions on your behalf. If you struggle with taking ownership or accountability for your life, this will not work for you. This program will support and guide and facilitate your process but I cannot heal on your behalf.

  • I see you and have empathy for you if you are in any of these phases, but this is the wrong program for you.

This program allows us to get more deeply into areas of work that feel nourishing so we can serve better.

We are extremely grateful for all the love and support and trust you have in me and my whole team - first as a doula and as a therapist and now as a “Theracoach”.

We take that safety and trust very seriously and will never take that for granted. We have built a network of therapists who are trauma-informed and will continue to recommend and refer you to our trusted sources for your therapy needs. We continue to partner with various birth and parenting coaches for more cognitive tools and help. As always, we are just a DM away.

We will always continue to be very vocal about gender and systemic issues and power inequalities - this will continue to be the cornerstone of anything we do. We have some impactful partnerships and collaborations lined up for the rest of this year so watch this space!

This decision comes after a very lengthy process of figuring out what our role needs to be in this world right now, and what role can create the biggest impact. Allowing ourselves to be really big and authentic and feel worthy, is the most powerful tool we have to dismantle patriarchy, and also model it for everyone in this audience and beyond.

We are very excited about this new phase of and looking forward to your continued support, love, empathy, and encouragement as we continue to grow.

Much love,

Sangheetha and Team

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