Fatima Bustos-Choy founded WholeMind Power Consulting to act as a spiritual guide for people looking to make profound and sustainable lifestyle changes.
“The nature of my work is about helping people to live their purpose and have a more holistic lifestyle,” she said.
WholeMind Power consulting works with individuals as well as businesses. Individuals sign up for coaching and training sessions mostly through referrals. Companies sign up their employees for one-on-one career coaching or management training. Also, companies can sign up for leadership development, team building, and communications training.
“Individual clients often need help with their career development when they feel stuck, burnout but don’t see options for themselves,” Bustos-Choy said. “And a number of them (need help) dealing with stress and manager-employee relationships.”
One client was an employee who was referred by his manager to help him deal with stress and emotions of anxiety especially when COVID forced businesses to shut down and people had to work from home.
“The employee was overwhelmed with his responsibilities,” she recalled, “feeling no way to escape given that work and home life started to overlap, and exacerbated by his manager’s leadership style, which was type-A behaviors and unaware of work and personal boundaries needed by the employee.
“The coaching I provided for him was to recognize his emotional patterns and how he deals with stress associated with authority,” she said.
Bustos-Choy set a goal for her client to recognize his personal responsibility for his responses and how to manage his stress and communicate more effectively.
“It took about 10 sessions,” she said, “then he recognized that he loved his co-workers but that the manager’s work style had created deep anxiety. … Ultimately, he chose to leave the company for his health and well-being. I helped prepare him for this decision and his resignation, though difficult, went smoothly and he felt good about it.”
In another instance, Bustos-Choy helped a community organization deal with the loss of their beloved executive director, who had resigned unexpectedly followed by the appointment of a new one.
“There was some animosity toward the new executive and a great deal of anxiety with the older employees who were aligned with the outgoing executive,” she said.
Through a series of one-on-one interviews, Bustos-Choy designed a four-hour team-building workshop where the focus was on “What’s working? What’s life giving? What is their individual and collective vision for their organization?”
“My offerings are based on clients’ needs and capacities,” she said. “I generally do a needs-assessment as a first step in the consulting process to assess what’s going on, problems they have, goals they want, how much time they have, who will participate. … From there, I develop a consulting proposal.”
Depending on her assessment, Bustos-Choy may recommend group or individual one-on-one sessions, which could take place weekly in the span of two or three months. Price range is customized and depends on the agreed-upon intervention.
Prior to opening an earlier version of her business called Body & Brain Holistic Wellness & Meditation Center, Bustos-Choy had extensive corporate experience as director of training for Citibank and a consultant to management.
Bustos-Choy began her career in 1998.
Yet no year has been as challenging as last year, when suddenly she could no longer meet her clients in person.
“I’ve had to redesign some of those programs to be delivered more effectively in a virtual way,” she said. “(When) I translated the class into online, it was OK, but I didn’t feel it had a soul.”
Bustos-Choy managed to fine-tune her virtual sessions.
In April 2019, she joined the Filipino-American Chamber of Commerce and was elected to its board by October.
Being part of the chamber has helped Bustos-Choy navigate a very difficult year for the pan-Asian community, marked by a dramatic uptick of discrimination and assaults. Bustos-Choy participated in an online gathering led by Leadership Education for Asian Pacific’s Linda Akutagawa.
“We came together virtually and talked about our own anxieties,” Bustos-Choy said. “It was a good way to process. I personally have not experienced (the racism) but there were four or five in the group who had experienced it themselves.”
Bustos-Choy said the Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders community must become proactive in calling out or confronting injustice.
“We can no longer be invisible,” she said. “We can no longer play it safe. We can no longer stay in our comfort zone.”
– Michael Aushenker