Chris Novoa is an entrepreneur from Honesdale. His new business, WISP, provides fitness and lifestyle coaching services for those looking to level-up in their personal and professional lives.
Originally from Queens, NY, Chris moved to Honesdale when he was only six years old. For all intents and purposes, Chris is a Honesdale native. Chris graduated from Honesdale High School and worked in the financial field for a while, eventually settling in Honesdale and buying a home with his wife Sarah. Chris notes that his favorite things about Honesdale are all the things that he didn’t enjoy so much in his youth. He cites the strong sense of community and avenues for visibility as factors in this.
Jump to Entrepreneurship
Chris recently left his last job to start his own business with his wife as a lifestyle coach and wellness mentor. Additionally, he works part-time as a coach at his local CrossFit gym.
“That’s probably one of the biggest influences for me to do what I’m doing today. Just having the opportunity to coach and work with people really opened my eyes to how much I enjoy doing that.”
When asked to expand upon his new business, Chris explained it: “On an individual basis I offer nutrition coaching, personal training, mindset coaching, habit development coaching, as well as professional development training for businesses.”
Chris enjoys helping people to set SMART goals and accomplish those goals. What is a SMART goal? According to Chris, a SMART goal is a goal that is specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound. His coaching method includes talking with the client and identifying SMART goals. Once the goals are set, he also focuses on finding awareness of potential hurdles.
“It’s not just setting the goal and then going on the attack. It’s knowing yourself, knowing how your brain can play tricks against you in your pursuit of these goals, and finding a higher-level of awareness in your approach.”
In talking with Chris, it is abundantly clear that he is an all-around coach and mentor for individuals of all backgrounds and paths. After all, WISP stands for Wellness, Inspiration, and Self-Development Practices. Whether you are looking to get in shape, elevate your career, or find enlightenment, Chris is someone who may be of service in that endeavor. Chris has a passion for helping people along in whatever journey they may be on. He quotes the words of author and motivational speaker Rory Vaden: “You are best positioned to serve the person you once were.” Chris clearly lives by this statement in his work.
Struggles and Inspiration
Chris also mentioned some of his past struggles as motivation for what he does today.
“I have my own backstory of needing a lot of different support in my life to make changes. You know, if I think back ten years ago, I didn’t really like the person I was. I was stuck in a rut. I just was who I was. I didn’t know how to make changes in my life. I was close to 300 pounds. I was a smoker. I would eat and drink unhealthily. My basic coping mechanisms were to eat, drink, and smoke. I had never really grown up as a healthy individual.”
One of the biggest jump-starts in Chris’ self-improvement journey started with CrossFit. He and Sarah took up CrossFit in February of 2018. He found the environment of CrossFit and the community surrounding it to be supportive and empowering.
“Nothing ever kept me consistent and motivated enough. That’s how I ended up finding CrossFit. I ended up meeting so many amazing individuals with stories that were similar to mine and that were far more inspiring. It was just so interesting to me that I met them in this pocket of life that I would never have guessed to see them. That’s what inspires me to do what I do every day, because I know that we all have our own stories. Regardless of the person that everyone else sees you as, you have your own story of how you got to where you are, and if I can help people get where they want to go, that would make me the happiest. Serving people in that way really just thrills me because I know how it feels to overcome those things. If I can help someone feel a fraction of that, then that’s good. It’s all worth what I’m doing.”
Needless to say, Chris has true passion for what he does. He states that the people most responsible for his progress are his wife, his CrossFit cohorts, and his late mother.
“Many of the changes I’ve made in my life were because I thought Sarah was deserving of me being that person. I wanted to be the person she deserved because she was the person that meant the most to me. She has given me her unconditional love and support in this. Without her none of this would be going on.”
“Ashley and Ellie from CrossFit are also two people that I would not be here without. They saw something in me as a member of their gym when they asked me to become a coach. Thanks to that opportunity I realized how much I enjoyed coaching people. Finally my mother as well, for instilling a strong sense of work ethic in me and for telling me that wherever I was in life was not always somewhere I had to stay.”
Outside of Business
Outside of exercising and operating his business, Chris also enjoys watching NFL football, hiking, exploring new places with his wife, meeting new people, and learning from them. One of his favorite hobbies is reading and discovering new information.
Chris’ current goals for his business include developing a strong social media presence while also becoming more involved in the local community. He wants his work to make an impact on those around him before branching-out across the country.
We asked Chris what advice he would give to his twelve year old self if he could.
“That’s a great question. I feel like my answer could change over time, but right now I think if I could go back to my twelve year old self and give one piece of wisdom to him, it would be that everything is never as it seems. One of the things that I fell victim to most of my life was having tunnel vision as it related to any problem in front of me. Rather than being a ‘glass half full’ or ‘glass half empty’ person, it’s best to be the person that sees the pitcher of water on the table, knowing that you have the ability to change your circumstances.”
We would like to thank Chris for spending some time to speak with us about his entrepreneurial journey. We wish him the very best of luck in building his business and serving others to fulfill their highest potential!
You can get in touch with Chris or learn more about him and WISP on Facebook.