Who & Why
Who We Are
Being an entrepreneur is a hard life
It is a lonely life.
Even if you have a business partner. Even if you have a life partner. Even if you have a great team.
Your mind, your creativity, your motivation, your ability to execute, your belief in your business, your belief in yourself, your ability to communicate.
Your business succeeds or fails based on you.
ZenFounder can be a life raft, it can also be the boost in horsepower that helps you move quickly through the most challenging aspects of the entrepreneurial life.
We help entrepreneurs
We help entrepreneurs
We help entrepreneurs
Love their lives
We are not a life coaching business.
We don’t do business coaching either.
ZenFounder pairs the best in psychological theory and science with years of entrepreneurial success.
We create communities, spread ideas, host events, consult- do whatever is needed to spark catalytic conversations about how to make entrepreneurship a sustainable, satisfying life.
Every aspect of our work is informed by the pairing of psychological expertise and years of working the in trenches as an entrepreneur.
Through events, speaking and consulting we have helped 100s of entrepreneurs, families, and companies thrive.
Dr. Sherry Walling
Dr. Sherry Walling is the life force behind ZenFounder. She is a licensed clinical psychologist with extensive experience supporting high achieving people with high-intensity jobs. She is an academic and professional powerhouse with master’s degrees in psychology and theology, formal training as a yoga teacher, and a PhD in clinical psychology. She’s held faculty appointments at several universities including UC San Francisco’s Department of Psychiatry. She has extensive experience treating PTSD in combat veterans, working with families trapped in family violence, and supporting the mental health needs of physicians and police officers. She’s also one of the early professionals to creatively combine yoga and psychotherapy. Sherry has specialized training in the prevention of mental illness and she has held research fellowships at Yale University School of Medicine and the Boston University site of the National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder.
Already an accomplished professional, Sherry began working with entrepreneurs when her husband, Rob Walling, launched his first start-up more than 10 years ago. Being a life partner in an entrepreneurial family, she has lived the frenetic pace of a tech startup.
Pairing her professional training and personal experience, she’s helped countless founders and their families work through burnout, conflict, transition stress, and crisis.
When she’s not wearing her professional hat, Sherry can be found on her paddle board, building sandcastles on a warm beach, teaching aerial yoga, or ushering her three children through an art museum.
ZenFounder is Sherry’s response to the burnout, anxiety, and loneliness that she has encountered in hundreds of entrepreneurs.
What people are saying about Sherry...
"I've been a fan of Sherry's work on mental health in founders for years. Her conference talks are among the best I've heard in my career, on any topic.
Sherry helps people be empathetic and gives them actionable insights to support friends, colleagues, and family members who might be having a rough go of things. If you need someone to talk about mental health, I can't recommend Sherry enough."
"Sherry has a unique combination of experience and education that results in an ability to completely understand what founders go through. She understands founders, and has the unique ability to read and relate to each individual. The result is truly helpful, not regurgitated pop psychology or the "coaches" who haven't been there before themselves."
"I have watched Sherry speak a number of times. She’s also been a guest on our podcast and we’ve had various personal conversations. Sherry's insights have always proven invaluable, particularly in areas that are often not discussed publicly."
"Being newly married, and feeling the overwhelming weight of a startup, Sherry helped me navigate one of the hardest seasons of my life. She's an incredible listener, she gave me sound advice, and she held me accountable to the actions that I said I would take. I would highly recommend Sherry to anyone!"
Sweet Fish Media
"I talked to other coaches and therapist before Sherry. The other therapist didn't seem to have much understanding of business issues. The other therapist kept asking what felt like the wrong questions. Sherry asked questions that felt relevant and drove me toward answers that uncovered what was bothering me. Sherry's experience with founders makes her best at identifying whatever is going on, and working to improve the situation."
Meet the Team
Rob is a serial entrepreneur, angel investor and startup mentor who has been quoted in The Wall Street Journal, Inc. Magazine, Forbes and dozens of other national publications. He wrote one of the definitive guides to bootstrapping a startup. He is the founder of TinySeed, the founder of Drip, cofounder of MicroConf and the cohost of Startups for the Rest of Us. Rob is the other half of the ZenFounder podcast and also Sherry’s husband of 19 years.
Brooke Bergman, LMFT
Brooke is highly skilled at helping individuals and couples quickly identify the source of their relationship pain. She thinks outside the box. Being engaged to an artist and entrepreneur, she is intimately acquainted with the highs and the lows of the entrepreneurial journey and believes that healthy relationships at home lead to more creativity, productivity, and happiness.
When she isn’t working with clients you can find Brooke swimming in the ocean, learning to ski, dancing, or reading the latest research on the nervous system and how integrated we are as a body/mind.