How I Approach Busy Powerful People and Influencers

The podcast “The Nishant Garg Show” started without knowing anyone in the mental health and mindfulness industry. Why am I specific to only mental health and mindfulness industry? When I reached out to people, usually their first question was “what’s this podcast about?” Therefore, I had to pick a topic that I cared for and had been personally practicing for some time. If I had chosen a topic I wasn’t passionate about, I’d have given very early on. So, the key is to focus on the topics you care and passionate about. Fast forward, I’ve covered many other topics such as trauma healing, relationships, leadership, and more, as my interest level grows and I evolve with time. Growth is never a linear process – not sure who said this.

I had to start from somewhere. Some of the kindest friends said yes to be on the show in the beginning to boost my confidence and courage. You will need more courage than confidence when you literally know nothing about the podcasting or any new venture. Remember – courage over confidence.

I knew that if I want to go further, I can’t just rely on a few friends. I had to try something else. To begin with, I started connecting with people on LinkedIn and start pitching my little heart. I had zero experience in cold messaging. As they say, you just start, keep refining your approach with time, and observe what’s working and what’s not.

As of writing this, I must have done thousands of cold-pitches. I had a lofty goal since beginning although I didn’t know where exactly I want this podcast to go. My only intention was “building skills and developing connections” in this process even if I stop doing this so-called podcasting. I, personally, am not a fan of the “networking” as I am a person who likes to create deeper connections with a few souls only. I don’t believe in creating superficial connections with many-many bodies.

Cold pitching is not an easy thing. Know that, busy people and influencers won’t have time to respond to you even when you’ve a perfect pitch. When I was approaching someone busy (almost everyone was busier than me ;)), I always made sure to keep it short, sweet, and clear, and tried to make it easy enough for them to respond with either YES or NO. Did this approach work? Yes, it did to get me to this stage, but not all the time. Most of the time, I didn’t get any response. It was a practice ground for me to become comfortable with NOs and No Responses, and still is.

Your patience is going to be tested. When you don’t have a credibility, it’s really difficult to get people to say YES. However, it’s possible though. It’s a numbers game. When you’re just starting, don’t start with reaching out to people with a huge following – I did that mistake so many times early on. Your message will be lost in the overwhelming requests they receive or you will get a NO by their assistants. Here is the thing, be nicer to the assistants – they are the gatekeeper and they can let you in. So, be nice even when they say NO. You never know when the equation changes.

I realized that if I approach 100 people, at least 10 would say YES. That’s it. That’s all you need. It’s a numbers game. Now, after launching 167+ episodes, I very rarely cold-pitch people and I purely rely on referrals and connections.

Cold pitching is very time consuming and I strongly believe that it’s the best option for anyone starting afresh. In this process, you will learn to take NOs and rejections less personally. Busy people already have a lot on their plate, hence, the timing and luck definitely matters.

I was lucky enough to get some big influencers (Guy Kawasaki) early on. May be, they read my emails when they were in happy mood or less busy, who knows.

The first step is to test with different email templates. Be precise and clear with your message why you’re reaching them. Don’t write pages of emails – no one has time for that.

Don’t be pushy and salesy. Follow up 2-3 times over the weeks/months. It’s ok if you don’t get a response. The world is full of amazing people. If one says no, there is always another amazing person who will say yes. NO isn’t a rejection if we look at it from different. It simply is that they are not enrolled in your mission.

In my messages/emails, I showed empathy at the end by giving them the clear exit if they don’t have time to respond or uninterested in my pursuit. Ex: I understand that you get such an inbound request all the time, and If you have read my email this far, it means a lot to me. I am not in a rush to do this. Thanks in advance.

Two books, which really helped in understanding the purpose and mission, and being comfortable with rejections, are The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life and The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact.

I started capturing each cold pitch that worked for me in my go-to Evernote. To inspire you that it’s possible to make this happen from zero level, I’ve copied some pitches below. Nobody wants to be enrolled in a podcast; therefore, I had to create a mission and purpose around it, because we all human beings want to be part of a bigger purpose. I am glad to share that this little show is helping some people live a fulfilled and abundant life and they are the source of ripple effects.

Template 1:

“Hello X, I hope you are well and I will be brief here.

My name is Nishant. I’m originally from India and now live in Austin, Texas, USA. I am an Engineer and the Podcast host of the show “The Nishant Garg Show” where I invite world-class experts including Researchers, Psychologists, Business Tycoons, Mindfulness Experts, etc,  to share tools and practices to improve the quality of life. I am on a mission to help people live a fulfilled life and live more mindfully.

You have been on my mind for a while and have heard about you many times on Tim Ferriss and The Trauma Therapist Podcast. Thank you for making a difference in society.
My intention from this email is to invite you to my podcast as a guest, and I’d be honored to have you join me in this mission and share your wisdom with the listeners. As of writing this email, I have published 112 episodes in just 10 months. I understand that you get such an inbound request all the time, and If you have read my email this far, it means a lot to me. I am not in a rush to do this. Thanks in advance.

Much Love to you and Gratitude.”

Continue reading “How I Approach Busy Powerful People and Influencers”

End-of-life Psychedelic Psychotherapy and Psychedelics Awareness

Why am I writing a post on Psychedelics? A good friend Michael Ostrolenk asked me a few months ago — if I wanted to interview William A. Richards (Bill), and my response was hell yeah.

Why am I writing a post on Psychedelics? Let’s rewind and do a quick backstory— my elder brother died in 2014 due to blood cancer when he was 33 years old. In my family, back then, nobody knew about any healing modalities and we were relying only on the medicine. In just 2 months from the diagnosis, my brother died. I have seen tremendous amount of suffering in my family since his death and I take a stand to spread the word about any healing modalities to heal ourselves and support others to heal. We can’t change what we are not aware of.

This is my first attempt to share something on Psychedelics and therefore, keeping it simple and short.

A good friend Michael Ostrolenk asked me a few months ago — if I wanted to interview William A. Richards (Bill), and my response was hell yeah. I literally jumped off of my chair when Bill(he likes to be called by name Bill) said yes to be a guest. We spoke for about 90mins and went into the details of the Psychedelics world, different substances, and Psychedelics assisted therapy, and much more to heal the trauma, anxiety, depression, dying cancer patients and many other ways and areas to incorporate Psychedelics. The podcast episode will be launched very soon.

Updates by 6/28/2021: I sent this post to Bill to review and get the feedback if I misstated anything. Bill is kind enough to review and therefore I’m adding a few more things to help people better understand and attempt to remove any confusion from this post. At some places, you will see a strikethrough text I made after hearing from Bill. Here is a note from Bill’s desk(in italics):


Be careful not to imply that psychedelics “heal dying cancer patients”.  Though it is not impossible that some persons may live longer due to better self-care and more effective immune systems once depression fades, our research to date is focused on quality of life, not quantity.  The goal is to help people “live until they die”.  Also more is needed than “safe environment and container”; those who choose to take psychedelics (legally or illegally) need to be well prepared/educated and attend to both medical and psychological/spiritual considerations.  Some incur a greater degree of risk than others, for example anyone with severe psychological problems/history of psychosis, either personally or in terms of genetics/family history, or people with brain tumors, poorly functioning kidneys, cardiac issues, other medications in one’s system, etc.  There’s a lot we don’t know at this point.

The CBS “60 Minutes” segment isn’t from “when psychedelics were legal”.  They always have been legal in research contexts for investigators with an IND—an Investigational New Drug Permit—from the FDA, which of course we had at the time (1976).  Back when I got involved in Germany in 1963, psychedelics were legal (and relatively unknown)—sent through the mail to interested physicians by Sandoz Pharmaceuticals in Switzerland.  This changed in the late 1960’s when Nixon’s “drug war” was launched, scheduling of drugs was established, and UN treaties were signed.


First thing first — How I got started in Psychedelics? For quite some time, I thought psychedelics isn’t for me. There are so many myths around it and I was trapped in it.

A friend invited me over dinner who is a celebrated person in the space of Human Optimization. He offered me MDMA and my questions were — what do I do with this and what are the benefits? He mentioned — MDMA is a heart opener, develops deep empathy and love for others, and suggested I take it the next morning and go in nature. The next morning, I had no idea what I was getting into. I took the pill with confidence and after about 20 mins, I started seeing my vision bright and I felt deep love for animals and human beings. It was a beautiful different experience. Usually, the MDMA experience (or trip) lasts for about 6 hours(in my experience). Make sure to do your own research before consuming it.

After a few months later, I had another Psychedelic experience using DMT with a trusted friend in a safe setting. Intention setting is important here. My intentions were to visit my childhood trauma and adult romantic relationships.

After my first exposure to MDMA and DMT , I started to realize the healing benefits of Psychedelics. I am an amateur in this space and look up to people who have broad exposure. You get to start with something, right? Please don’t misuse these substances. They are not for everyone. Please make sure that you are in the “safe environment and container”.

Fast forward—In my interview preparation of Bill, I came across this very old video The CBS “60 Minutes” segment (when psychedelics used to be legal) of him administering DPT to the dying cancer patient or you can say end-of-life psychedelic psychotherapy. This video brought me to tears and I couldn’t wait to ask Bill for his permission to publish this video. This is my small attempt to spread the awareness around psychedelics considering its powerful healing nature.

This video depicts Bill assisting a cancer patient.

Here is a short bio of Bill Richards:

William A. Richards (Bill) is a psychologist in the Psychiatry Department of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Bayview Medical Center, a consultant/trainer at sites of psychedelic research internationally, a teacher in the Program of Psychedelic Therapy and Research at the California Institute of Integral Studies, and also a clinician in private practice in Baltimore. His graduate degrees include M.Div. from Yale Divinity School, S.T.M. from Andover-Newton Theological School and Ph.D. from Catholic University, as well as studies with Abraham Maslow at Brandeis University and with Hanscarl Leuner at Georg-August University in Göttingen, Germany, where his involvement with psilocybin research originated in 1963.

From 1967 to 1977, he pursued psychotherapy research with LSD, DPT, MDA and  psilocybin at the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center, including protocols designed to investigate the promise of psychedelic substances in the treatment of alcoholism, depression, narcotic addiction and the psychological distress associated with terminal cancer, and also their use in the training of religious and mental-health professionals. From 1977-1981, he was a member of the psychology faculty of Antioch University in Maryland. In 1999 at Johns Hopkins, he and Roland Griffiths launched the rebirth of psilocybin research after a 22 year period of dormancy in the United States. His publications began in 1966 with “Implications of LSD and Experimental Mysticism,” coauthored with Walter Pahnke. His book, Sacred Knowledge: Psychedelics and Religious Experiences was released in English by Columbia University Press in 2015 and has since been translated into 6 additional languages—hopefully more coming.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: These plants and compounds are illegal in many countries, and even possession can carry severe criminal penalties. None of this post constitutes medical advice or should be construed as a recommendation to use psychedelics. There are serious legal, psychological, and physical risks. Psychedelics are not for everyone—they can exacerbate certain emotional problems, and there have been, in very rare cases, fatalities.


The Nishant Garg Show:

This show is about extracting information on Mindfulness, Personal Development, Spirituality. I am on a mission to spread Mindfulness and I’d love for you to join me in this movement. For any question, please contact me. If you have enjoyed listening to my podcasts, please subscribe to the new podcast updates on Itunes please provide your reviews on Itunes which will really help me. S

This podcast is brought to you by Friday Newsletter. If you’d like to learn more about what I am reading, new documentaries, what I am learning new, recent podcast updates, things I am experimenting with, or anything —which I share extensively in my weekly short and sweet “Friday Newsletter”. No spam ever! I hate that too!

Esther Perel — Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence

The real questions are these: Can we have love and desire in the same relationship over time? How? What exactly would that kind of relationship be?

The quality of our relationships determines the quality of our lives. 

– Esther Perel

I’m a huge fan of Esther Perel ‘s work. Her book Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence is a must read for anyone single, already in relationship, or anyone in between. This book clearly explains how to create different levels of “Intimacy” and “Desire”. Desire is different from “Wanting”. You can’t desire what you already have. This book has been the revelation for me to understand the significance of separateness to create desire. Too much closeness can dissipate the desire. I think “too much” of anything isn’t good in any area of life. Too much of closeness in a relationship can cause temporary boredom. We get to learn to dance between separateness and closeness.

I contacted Esther’s team to get the permission to publish 300 words from the book Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence so that I can spread the word and help people build a deep meaningful relationships and desire for more. We need to learn the fundamentals and philosophy to enter into relationships or enhance our existing relationships. As Esther says — “The quality of our relationships determines the quality of our lives.

For folks who don’t know Esther, she is a Psychotherapist and New York Times bestselling author. Recognized as one of today’s most insightful and original voices on modern relationships. Fluent in nine languages, she helms a therapy practice in New York City and serves as an organizational consultant for Fortune 500 companies around the world. Her celebrated TED talks have garnered more than 20 million views and her international bestseller Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence became a global phenomenon translated into 25 languages. Her newest book is the New York Times bestseller The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity (HarperCollins). Esther is also an executive producer and host of the popular podcast Where Should We Begin

Here is a short summary from the book:

“As a couple’s therapist, I have inverted the usual therapeutic priorities. In my field, we are taught to inquire about the state of the union first and then ask how this is manifested in the bedroom. Seen this way, the sexual relationship is a metaphor for the overall relationship. The underlying assumption is that if we can improve the relationship, the sex will follow. But in my experience, this is often not the case.

The real questions are these: Can we have love and desire in the same relationship over time? How? What exactly would that kind of relationship be?

The challenge for modern couples lies in reconciling the need for what is safe and predictable with the wish to pursue what is exciting, mysterious, and awe-inspiring.

Seeking excitement in the same relationship in which we establish permanence is a tall order. Unfortunately, too many love stories develop in such a way that we sacrifice passion as to achieve stability.

Modern life has deprived us of our traditional resources, and has created a situation in which we turn to one person for the protection and emotional connections that as multitude of social networks used to provide. Adult intimacy has become overburdened with expectations.

If we are to maintain desire with one person over time, we must be able to bring a sense of unknown into a familiar space. In the words of Proust, “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes”.

I had long assumed about the correlation between intimacy and sexuality. Rather than looking at sex as an exclusive outgrowth of the emotional relationship, I have come to see it as a separate entity. Sexuality is more than a metaphor for the relationship – it stands on its own as a parallel narrative.”

If you’re intrigued by this reading, get the book Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence, or at least check her blogs and resource here.

Also, check out her Intimacy Inventory to journal: https://thestateofaffairs.estherperel.com/intimacy-inventory/


The Nishant Garg Show:

This show is about extracting information on Mindfulness, Personal Development, Spirituality. I am on a mission to spread Mindfulness and I’d love for you to join me in this movement. For any question, please contact me. If you have enjoyed listening to my podcasts, please subscribe to the new podcast updates on Itunes please provide your reviews on Itunes which will really help me. S

This podcast is brought to you by Friday Newsletter. If you’d like to learn more about what I am reading, new documentaries, what I am learning new, recent podcast updates, things I am experimenting with, or anything —which I share extensively in my weekly short and sweet “Friday Newsletter”. No spam ever! I hate that too!

Attachment Styles, Communication in Relationships, Fear of Commitment and Healthy Boundaries — Lisa Scott

Attachment Styles, Communication in Relationships, Fear of Commitment and Healthy Boundaries — Lisa Scott

“Trauma isn’t what happens to you, it’s what happens inside you.”

Gabor Maté

This post highlights some of the resources by Lisa Scott listened to, recently which I enjoyed so much. In fact, I have been listening to this podcast on repeat. So, here is backstory. In the second week of April 2021, I was feeling deep emotional pain and heartache. I’ve been in the process of understanding and uncovering my own childhood issues and trauma. I had heard Gabor Mate and other Legendaries mention about parent-child attachments during early years and how it shapes our relationships with ourselves and with others when we grow older.

I searched “attachment” on Spotify and this new podcast from Lisa popped up. As I started listening—I was completely thrilled and it resonated with me so much that I could go back (in my mind) to my childhood and see some deep things with less resistance and better clarity.

Hence, I decided to list down all the podcast episodes I listened to in a week so that you can also learn about attachment styles and their close siblings.

Lisa Scott is a licensed professional counselor and host of her own podcast, What’s Next With Lisa Scott. Lisa is well known for her solution based and client focused style of therapy. Aside from hosting her own podcast, Lisa owns a private practice, and is a professor of psychology. With over fifteen years of experience as a mental health professional and experience ranging from crisis intervention in a clinical setting to working with families and individuals, Lisa’s  passion and focus remains on empowering people to establish healthy loving relationships not only with themselves but with others in their life .

Lisa’s podcast is for all ages and all walks all life. If you’re human this podcast is for you. Lisa Scott is a licensed professional counselor who has developed techniques to start living a more authentic, fulfilled life, by taking common theories from the therapy world and making them relatable and something people can connect to. Anger, sadness, anxiety, self worth, authenticity and how to take your power back are just of the the concepts she discusses.

Connect with Lisa: Twitter | Instagram | Email | Support the show(Paypal)

Please be sure to see the important disclaimer at the bottom of this post. Now, please enjoy!

Podcasts I listened to:

  • Anxious Attachment in Relationships: In this episode, Lisa talks about what it looks like to anxiously attach to people in relationships, and how that can hinder your relationship success. Listen to this episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or anywhere you get your podcasts.
  • Fearful Avoidant Attachment Style in Relationships: In this episode Lisa discusses, fearful avoidant relationship style. This attachment style can prove to be one of the most difficult, because these people withdrawal often times with no warning when things get too intimate. Listen in as Lisa explains how to spot it in someone you’re dating, how to spot it in yourself, and how to work through it to form a secure attachment. 
  • Dismissive Avoidant Attachment Style in Relationships: In this episode, Lisa discusses third attachment style, dismissive avoidant style. This attachment style can be a result of a caregiver who minimized their child’s feelings, and therefore never taught the child how to feel or to be comfortable with anyone else’s feelings. Listen in, as Lisa tells you what it is, how to spot it, and what to do about it. 
  • Secure Attachment in Relationships: In this episode, Lisa details what secure attachment is, what it feels like, how to find it, and how to take care of it. If you’re craving a healthy relationship, listen in learn how to connect to yourself and those around you in a way that feels empowered and healthy. 
  • Communication in Relationships: Why does communicating in your relationship always seem so hard??? Listen in, as Lisa goes through what healthy communication in a relationship looks like as well as gives some pointers and advice regarding how to start communicating more effectively in your relationship, today! Lisa also answers a listeners question about how to get over a break up. 
  • Healthy Boundaries and Toxic Positivity: In this episode, Lisa helps you work through how to set healthy boundaries that feel good and don’t alienate everyone around you. Lisa also addresses how being too positive all of the time can actually become a toxic coping mechanism.
  • Do You Have A Fear of Commitment?: In this episode, Lisa explains what a fear of commitment actually means and she explains how to get to the root of pushing through that discomfort. Lisa also details what kind of things you need to do to help ensure you can enter a relationship with a secure attachment vs an anxious or insecure one. 

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: Please note that Information shared in this post is for educational purposes only, and is not intended in any way as psychological treatment, advice or consultation of any kind. “if you are struggling with relationship issues,trauma and other mental health issues, please seek the treatment of a licensed mental health professional.

The Nishant Garg Show:

This show is about extracting information on Mindfulness, Personal Development, Spirituality. I am on a mission to spread Mindfulness and I’d love for you to join me in this movement. For any question, please contact me. If you have enjoyed listening to my podcasts, please subscribe to the new podcast updates on Itunes please provide your reviews on Itunes which will really help me. S

This podcast is brought to you by Friday Newsletter. If you’d like to learn more about what I am reading, new documentaries, what I am learning new, recent podcast updates, things I am experimenting with, or anything —which I share extensively in my weekly short and sweet “Friday Newsletter”. No spam ever! I hate that too!