Your Secret Money Maker and Why There is No Competition
I was shaking and my brain couldn’t form a complete thought.
It was time to update my story. And make it current.
I teach about currency, after all. That is the energy you exchange with people. It has to be building and constructive energy (anabolic), and it has to be current, in order to magnetize the right people in your direction.
When it’s not current, it becomes stale. And stale energy is not attractive.
I’ve been telling the same version of my story for years… and as I up my game, I’ve got to up my level of risk, and currency, because that’s the kind of thing that has people stay with you and open up to you long enough to have what you teach sink in.
I’m a horrible practicer. And I truly apologize for that because it is one of those things I wish I could do better for you, but I believe in operating as designed rather than beating ourselves up for how we’re not.
Thankfully, I have learned to be good at some of the ‘secrets’ to engaging an audience that generally makes up for this that I’ll share today.
But today’s article wasn’t actually inspired by my story. Inspiration was all around this week.
The World’s Shortest Story
Your story is your moneymaker in business as entrepreneur. Whether you are a service or a product business, however unique your offering is, in today’s world we want to buy belief. The first thing I look for when I evaluate a website is ‘who are the people behind this thing and why do they care?’
In a client call last week we worked through the key points of her story that make her perfectly designed to do the work she does. (That’s the picture you want to paint). She was excited, and went to work.
When I received the recording of her story to review for feedback, I didn’t know where to begin. It was very short and to the point, almost reading a laundry list of things that happened. They were really cool things that could make sense, but the delivery was very off.
I took a step back to look at the big picture. Because to give feedback on the details wouldn’t serve her. Something was off in her BELIEF about telling her story.
I determined there were two things.
1) Be Willing to Take Up Space
Many of the entrepreneurs I work with have had some experience in their early life that caused them to decide not to take up too much space. To keep it down, that they weren’t important, that what they wanted didn’t matter, etc. Often we don’t realize that our experiences, when shared, are deeply fascinating.
She was making her story as short as possible, and I could see that was coming from a place of not wanting to take up space.
Let’s hurry and get to the content so I can make sure I overdeliver!
But people won’t even hear your content if you haven’t first gotten them bought in to why YOU believe YOU.
“People will never listen to what you have to say or believe what you have to say. They will always listen for whether YOU believe what you have to say.” – Larry Winget
This is why you’ve got to share your story.
I was moved by Jared Leto’s acceptance speech at the Oscars on Sunday, for many reasons.
If you missed it, it’s HERE
Talk about taking up space. In a time when most people rush to thank everybody, he stopped to tell a story about his mother. And we were all on the edge of our seats to hear about this pregnant teenage girl in Louisiana. And after talking about his mother, he then went on to talk about the importance of his role and the movie (Dallas Buyers Club).
It really didn’t take that long. And in that short time, we learned something. And we believed him.
There is no competition
I’ve seen lots of Facebook threads this week about competition – is it good, is it bad, how do we handle it, etc. When you take up space with your story, competition is irrelevant.
Your story is what makes you unique. It makes you, in the words of Joe Calloway, “a category of one.” I promise you, no matter how you judge where you’ve been and what you have and haven’t done, your story can make you millions. And when you own it, there is no competition for being you.
2) Be Present to The Story
The other piece of advice I gave my client was to be present to her story. You need to tell the story as if you are there.
When you are actually present to what was happening, you are seeing it and reliving it in your mind’s eye, that is the difference between engaging your audience in being there, and ‘talking about’ something to them.
This is what makes creating a new, or current, story, so anxiety-producing.
You must find the right combination of pieces of your story that allow you to really re-live that story time and again in your mind, and be moved by your story and the Truth of your own experience, without melting down, breaking down, or otherwise losing your cool. And you can’t be detached and be present. And this is why it feels so damn risky. And makes us shake.
And this is a good thing. And it’s also why practice is helpful, as much as I don’t enjoy practice!
When you know your 3 main points that build upon your story’s theme (we tend to think and remember in 3’s), and you can relive them in your mind and with your words, while feeling the experience of them and not breaking down, you’re golden.
Keep It Current
Don’t let your story be stale. Also don’t rethink and overthink so much that nothing ever really gets done. To create that magnetic currency, you want to keep it current.
One of the exercises we’ll do at Align It LIVE is to craft your story and create a safe space for you to practice the power of it.
Two Things Entrepreneurs Create that Others Don’t
This week’s article is a video blog… what can we create as entrepreneurs that most people never will? Check it out:
The Courage To Be the Type of Person Who…
I’ve talked to three types of people in the last week.
- People who are so courageous that they are willing to see and admit their Truth, and move through it, making the changes they need to make to have a happy, peaceful, inspiring, thriving business.
- People who have no awareness of their Truth – they can’t and don’t want to see what’s blocking them and continue to look for a magic pill so that they don’t have to change anything. They are frustrated and blame circumstances (some times in the form of people) for their results.
- People who have gotten an insight about what has been blocking them, and they know what they need to change to make their business work, but they are not willing. The unknown of what will happen when they act is more than they are willing to explore.
It’s the third type that can break a person’s heart.
I was there for many years, with many intuitive signals about what I was meant to be doing with my life, but I didn’t know how to interpret them or how to act on them. So I would dream up a business, and instead of acting on it, I’d find another job.
I had some very clear hints about what was calling to my heart, but I was afraid, and I had no clear model for how to put them into action, so I did what felt safe and ‘normal.’
And the more I made decisions that kept me safe, the more my heart broke inside. I made decisions that distracted me, like planning a wedding, getting married, and focusing on building my spouse’s business (which was branded beautifully, by the way).
Then luckily death and divorce hit me in one fell swoop. I say luckily because while I miss my stepfather all the time, his death got my attention. And while everything that felt solid was changing for me, I saw my opportunity to start making decisions on my own, just for me, for the first time.
And I started way back then to become the type of person who could lead this business.
See, we are bombarded by messages about how business can be easy, and how we can make a ‘quantum leap’ and make tons of money while we sleep.
Now all of these things are true. I’ve experienced greater ease than I imagined. The work I actually do is easy. But being the type of person who can lead a business is not. I’ve created quantum leaps in revenue – I doubled every year for the first 4 years. And I’ve gotten orders in my inbox overnight.
But a quantum leap doesn’t happen just because we decide. It happens because we decide, and then become the type of person who…
- Has complete faith that the quantum leap is a done deal and begins to act as if. That means if you want to have a 6 or 7 figure business, you invest as that type of business NOW. From the beginning. This takes courage.
- Is willing to be the type of person who can operate at that new level. When your business goes in the direction you truly desire, you will come face to face with all kinds of ways in which you were not yet prepared for that outcome. If you are resistant to, or afraid to change, you will shy away from the desire for this very reason. Your subconscious knows what’s coming, and it’s terrified.
Courage and the Subconscious Mind
Your subconscious mind will give you every reason not to do the thing that you desire. It has spent a lifetime keeping you safe from risk, in it’s own, highly customized way. It will seem like a good idea to:
- Wait until the kids are older
- Stay with the spouse who is completely unsupportive
- Plan a wedding
- Take the kids to Disneyland
- Take this good-enough job
- Keep working with the business partner you don’t agree with because it’s safer than going out on your own
- Try to save the money to pay down the debt first (making an income you can hardly live on)
And the reasons will REALLY make sense. And it takes nothing but courage to make the decision to move your business forward. But once you give yourself an experience on the other side of the fear, that belief no longer has power over you.
That is what makes an Aligned Entrepreneur so special.
Their faith in their own reason for being on the planet is stronger than the fear of the unknown. It is the source of their courage, and I stand in admiration. Are you willing to be this type of person?
This week alone I’ve seen this type of person:
- Enjoy the fun and ease that has come on the other side of making a courageous decision to close her business that was out of alignment. In two weeks she’s attracted every opportunity she could imagine supporting her new direction!
- Navigate the storms around her with grace and ease and a new awareness of her role. When people in her life got sick, experienced tragedy, and brought both real and imagined drama her way, she was able to be a safe and gracious space for them without taking on their pain. Giving generously while staying focused on her business.
- Experience loss of life, both giving herself the space to experience the full range of her emotions without shutting them down, and also allowing her higher self to see the gifts in the loss at the same time. It will fuel her business in a whole new way, and she’s not putting any pressure on herself about that.
- Take bold action in her marketing, get a result, and look honestly at what worked and what didn’t, quickly adjusting the plan without taking anything personally. The adjustment required her to give up a pattern that worked for her in her former life, but wasn’t fulfilling her now.
- Travel to be where the ideal audience is, even though traveling isn’t the most natural thing for her, and the investment involved was scary. She allowed it to be a fun adventure that grows both her and her audience! (And had her highest grossing month ever!)
- Communicate boldly and authentically to a skeptical spouse, with a firm commitment to finding place where they could each hear and honor each other’s perspective, and finding the space from which they could each have what they really want.
So here’s what I’ve found. It is not easy to be this type of person. But when you learn to think about yourself, the mission you’re called to in your business, and the people around you from a higher consciousness energy of Truth, it actually becomes very simple. The stuff that stops the average person no longer stops you. And you know deep down you’re not meant to be average. You’re an Aligned Entrepreneur at heart. That’s what brought you here to these words.
Do you have the courage to be the type of person who can lead the business you’re meant to lead?
If you’re not sure and you’d like the committed space to find out, OR if you are sure and you know you’re called to step into the higher level of your business you couldn’t even imagine at the beginning (like me with my amazing team), I invite you to join me at Align It Live. It’s a special week to register this week. Here is the link: http://alignitlive.com
We’ve got two special bonuses, and you can bring a friend for free. It’s my honor to hold a courageous space for the bigger you to show up.
Sometimes the Answer Doesn’t Matter
I love me some answers. I especially love right answers. Don’t you?
Often entrepreneurs who are feeling stuck seek out resources like me because they just want a damn answer. Tell me what to do to get out of this mess. Tell me how to stop creating the same results over and over again when I know deep down that something more is possible.
And, both because I’m intuitive and because I’ve worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs, I often know from the start exactly what they need. And yet the answer doesn’t matter.
Why the Answer Isn’t the Answer
When someone isn’t ready to hear or receive the answer, the answer isn’t the answer! Being aware of this is part of knowing how to give your substance where it can do most good. It can also save you lots of frustration, because instead of looking for a magic answer, you can work to accurately define your issue, and to become the type of person who can move past it.
“A problem well stated is a problem half-solved.” – Charles Kettering
So what do I mean by this?
Imagine an entrepreneur who has a goal to ‘really launch’ her business. She’s been doing the business part time for about a year, and she’s got some clients and she’s made some money. She knows her general ‘profession’ and she loves what she does in general. She doesn’t have quite enough clients to feel successful and she isn’t charging enough to be sustainable.
In talking about what she does, she talked about all the things she CAN do and all of the different types of clients she’d worked with. She could handle doing any of those things, and she also had about five other ideas for who she could serve. And she didn’t want to give any of them up. Nor did she think it was a good idea.
Now I might be able to quickly see where she would end up, and envision a pretty cool, targeted, business model that would work well for what she loved. And I might be able to spend 15 minutes mapping out that business model and 3 strategies for connecting with clients. However, in a case like this, that answer isn’t the answer.
See if I were in answer mode, I would recommend focusing on a specific type of client and solving a specific type of problem, and I might even know which client was in alignment. This would allow her to be an expert at that thing, and charge whatever she wanted.
But there are just two problems with this. See, good advice like this is abundant, but when someone isn’t ready for it, it makes no difference. This is why so much good advice goes unheeded day after day. The answer is simple, but being ready to implement the answer is an art.
This entrepreneur likely has a couple of things to buy into first:
- That she wants to make significantly more money with fewer clients. Often service-based entrepreneurs want to give and they think more clients is better. Until they glimpse the idea of fewer clients, more money, and see it as a possibility, they won’t even hear the business model.
- That she is willing to be a known expert. Often women who aren’t going full barrel into their business are afraid to claim their stage. As long as they stay general and serve all different types of people, they are not declaring themselves an expert at anything. As long as this feels comfortable and claiming expertise feels threateningly scary (like maybe it will disrupt a family equilibrium), the advice won’t land.
- That limiting her offerings will bring her more. It’s counterintuitive for most people. Being available to fewer people will bring you more. When she is willing to be an expert at something, she has to be willing to stop doing the other things. “No” is a powerful little word to help create value.
- That she can choose what she loves, not what she’s capable of. When people feel obligated to do what they CAN do, rather than doing what they truly love, they will FEEL confused. In evaluating possible areas of expertise, this entrepreneur will not be able to discern the one that is aligned with her purpose so long as she looking through a filter of what she is willing to do. There will be so many options that she’ll confuse herself. She must be committed to creating the life she loves.
Once this entrepreneur is on board with these four ideas, the answer (the business model) will be well-received, will feel perfectly obvious and perfectly exciting. She’ll be off to the races. If the answer comes before she’s ready, it will be met with resistance, confusion, and struggle.
This is simply one example of how defining the real issue allows for a clear answer, yet these stories are abundant.
What about you?
If you’ve ever found yourself at a stuck point and looking for someone to just tell you what to do (I’ve been there!), yet the answers you’re getting aren’t landing, consider you just might be looking for an answer to the wrong problem. Look for a coach who can guide you to frame up the right questions and get you ready to receive the answers. When that happens, your natural brilliance will take over to make it happen without struggle.
CLICK HERE if you’d like to get on the phone with me!
Confusion is a Choice
It’s an absolutely gorgeous setting. The sun is getting low in the sky but it’s still warm and lovely out. Yet I’m filled with angst.
I’ve been faced with an exercise, one of those that makes you think and explore. And is supposed to have a big ‘ah-ha’ at the end. You know the ones… the ones I love.
Yet the ah-ha hasn’t come. And I’ve been thinking and exploring for longer than I’d like. But I want the right answer.
After giving a longing glance toward the beach just outside, I ask for help. The mentor who created this exercise will clearly know the answer, right? So we discuss it. And the more we discuss, the answer seems to get further away.
I start to get frustrated. I consider melting down for a moment, maybe I’ll get clarity after a good cry. But I don’t. I’ve written 3 potential ‘answers’ to the self-discovery question… but which one will make the biggest difference? Which one will have made it all worth it?
Then I get it.
And I laugh at myself inside. We humans are funny.
Here I am, in this fabulous setting. The sun. The warm breeze. The love of my life. And rather than being present to love and passion and peace, I’m in agony. Over which of 3 phrases on a piece of paper I should choose that will ultimately change my life.
Truth washes over me.
Nothing will change my life but me.
And besides, I like my life.
This is simply a choice.
Make the choice and make it right.
Focusing on what’s right about my decisions has, after all, been my secret weapon to growing my business beyond expectations. (It’s a level 5 of the 7 levels of energy I teach about).
Yet in that moment, in paradise, I forgot that confusion is a choice. And so is clarity. And unless we choose to personally define our world, it will never be clear.
The ability to choose is pretty cool, right?
I’ve also spent years getting here, to a place where I understand that I create my own reality – always.
And yet I still in that moment, when it felt like a lot was at stake, forgot.
I see this happen all the time.
If you’re reading my articles then you’re the type of person who believes in living in alignment with your Truth, and putting your best, most passionate, foot forward to the world. Which is awesome.
And yet that very commitment might keep you from the clarity you seek.
See, confusion is a choice. And so is clarity. And it always comes from within. We can CERTAINLY get guidance from outside of ourselves – that type of guidance has helped me to see my blind spots time and again. But when our desire to be our best has us looking outside of ourselves to have someone else tell us who that is, we will never really get clear. And at some level we know that.
Because we’re actually committed to confusion, and we will only let go of that commitment when we choose to no longer allow confusion to be our safety net.
See, when we’re confused we get big payoffs.
- We don’t have to risk putting our true message into the world to be judged
- We can procrastinate and avoid, and look like we’re trying. Maybe even striving for perfection
- We can confuse other people around us so at least we’re hiding out together
- We can keep people from supporting us who would love to make our lives easier if they could just figure out how
- We can continue to pretend not to know the things our intuition actually sees clearly. They are probably painful
- And we don’t have to be truly happy. Because most of us don’t trust that joy will last so it’s easier to just stay busy trying to figure out what might make us joyful someday.
We don’t mean to… we come by this honestly. The 5-year-old version of us created these walls, and they feel so familiar that we don’t want to take them down.
So let me just remind you one more time. Confusion is a choice. You can stop making it any time, and define your world with your own will, and then operate as if it’s the best damn world out there. And watch it line up with your choice.
If you suspect you may be committed to confusion, lets get on the phone and do a cost/payoff analysis so your rational mind will follow your intuition and let go of it once and for all. CLICK HERE to grab a session.