Is the “Not Enough” Hype Killing Your Profit?

May 1, 2013 by     5 Comments

I am the first to say that moving past where you typically stop requires a ‘come to Jesus’ sort of moment.  To decide to change your life will always come with a brief (or sometimes more than brief) moment of panic as you break through your fear.

If it doesn’t, you’re probably not upleveling yourself enough.

That said, it shouldn’t cause you to feel like crap!  In fact on the other side of an aligned decision (which in my world often means putting down a ‘burn-the-ships’ type deposit on something) there is freedom.

True, peaceful, freedom.  Not a “oh-thank-God-someone-will-save-me” idea of freedom, because that doesn’t exist.

Yet too many people make decisions from that place.

Much of the coaching industry is built on decisions made from that place.

I have made decisions from that place.  I learned a whole lot from it, but it didn’t grow my business.  I have worked with clients who have made a lot of those decisions from a place of fear, and in their work with me finally get to tap into who they really are and what they love… what works about them.

Cycle of Proving in Action

Can't Figure It OutI watch it happen.  A perfectly capable, confident business owner puts themselves in a situation to learn, without a clear awareness of who they are and what they are there to accomplish.  They learn all of the latest tools, tactics, and trends that they COULD be using to grow their business.  And they forget who they are and where they are, and the current skills and resources they have that work for them.  They lose track of everything they already know and all they have learned before that day, and they turn themselves over to the person in front of them to give them an answer to who they should be.

And they start to think they need it all right away, and feel bad for not having it.  They forget that while organic search may be dead, and paid search may be where it’s at, learning how to buy paid search will make no difference because… they don’t even like their website!

They want to prove they are good at that this thing called business, that they are enough, and they create an agreement that they are not enough if they don’t have paid search.

The Hype Can Win Out

A guru paints a picture of hoards of people being led right to you!  And you think you need that right now.  But you don’t, you wouldn’t know what to do with them if you had them!  It’s not a problem to learn paid search.  But aside from taking your precious time, here is where it really doesn’t serve you.  If you buy into the idea that you are somehow doing it ‘wrong’ if you don’t learn it right now.

In any given day in a business seminar you could learn HUNDREDS of things you’re not doing at a level of excellence:  Search, social media, email marketing, webinars, videos, follow-up, networking, finding speaking gigs, converting your audience to paying customers, sales, website copy, design, business cards, taglines, guest blogging, etc., etc., etc.

We always need to learn and grow as a business owner.  But the moment you buy into the idea that you are not enough because you’re not doing these things, you are sunk.  Energetically you just became the insecure provider trying to sell something.  And when you make a decision to get support from a place of feeling inadequate and hoping someone – some program, some technology, some guru who knows more than you – can fix you, you are confirming the energy of inadequacy.

Every decision has an energetic consequence.  

Love begets love, and fear begets fear.

Don’t buy into it.  

You can move past your leading edge of growth, and I am a huge proponent of getting the right support for you to help you do that.  And it will feel scary.  But getting support doesn’t need to make you feel as if you aren’t enough to begin with.  The best business decisions come from focusing on creating more of what you love, and focusing on the good within you and your business, and getting help to grow your unique genius.  What we focus on, grows.  Buying from fear grows fear.

The best thing you can spend money on is something that will teach you how to think, and how to make decisions that are in Alignment with the Truth of who you are, not ones that make you doubt all of the ways in which you are successful already.  Own your value, damn it, and choose and invest from there!

 

Circumstance Cindy in the To Do List!

November 21, 2012 by     Leave a Comment

Ever have one of these days?

You might be Cindy if you tend to have all kinds of stuff “hitting the fan” around you. You’re easily distracted by what others are doing and are afraid to put something out that might not make others happy, so you are holding back your opinion. Cindy, you are brilliant at knowing what people want and giving it to them – a skill developed at an early age. But we’ve got to make some shifts to put this to work for you!

Even if you may feel “evolved” in your thinking, your immediate gut response when something goes wrong is, “that figures,” or “nothing is ever easy.” You can get yourself out of this, but the cost of these reactions is huge – it may set you off track for a whole day. These little energy losses keep you from getting the systems in your business set up, hiring help, or making money. Your clients likely take advantage of your desire to please, and you shy away from “better” clients out of fear you’ll disappoint.

Watch the video and take the free quiz to find out if Cindy is your gal, and if you need to send her on vacation!

A fan of Cindy? LIKE her Facebook page so you can stay in the Profit Styles conversation!

 

Get Out the Map

October 31, 2012 by     4 Comments

To get from point A to point B, you have to know where, exactly, point A is.  You can’t begin a journey to a destination without being clear from where you are departing.

My mentor used to say if I dropped you in the desert with a map and you didn’t know your current location, it would be useless.

Makes total sense, right?

Only as a business coach, I frequently see people who have no idea where they actually are, and this is tragic.

Why does it matter?
  1. You can’t know the most effective next action to take if you don’t know what direction to head first.  You may invest in the wrong things, and waste time and money.
  2. Your action isn’t in alignment if you don’t know where you are.  You may be showing up in a way that is inconsistent with your marketing, for example.
  3. You will stress out for no reason, and possibly flip-flop or quit, if you’re not aware that what you are experiencing is perfectly normal for where you are.
Where are you?

Let’s explore a few areas that will help you to identify where you actually are.  I’ve broken it into two main categories to consider – mindset and resources.

1. Mindset
a. Clarity. Are you happy and confident doing what you’re doing and does that show, or is something blocking you from experiencing joy and clarity in your work? It’s amazing how often people don’t notice that they aren’t happy!
b. Energy. Is how you are showing up, your energy or way of being, in alignment with your action? The biggest killer of sales is when what you’re saying doesn’t match who you’re being. Many entrepreneurs are completely unaware of how they are showing up.
c. Commitment. Are you on fire with commitment? Are you so 100% certain of what you’re doing that nothing will stop you?
d. Money. Are you confident you are going to make money in your business, and willing to charge what you desire for your gifts? Are you able to stay calm about money, knowing that where the desire is present the way to fulfill it is also present? Do you have complete faith in you and the Universe?
You do not need to have a “perfect” mindset to run your business. We are always going in and out of alignment. What you do need is to be aware of where you actually are in your mindset. There are stages for heavy mindset work, for small adjustments, and there are stages for saying, “I’m aligned enough, lets take some massive action, get some results, and see how I feel then.”
2. Resources
a. Money. Do you have the financial resources you need right now or do you need a cash injection? There are stages where you need to be 100% focused on bringing in private clients and must resist the urge to write the book, create the radio show, or write content for a group program. Then there are stages in which your basic needs are handled and you can be creative, pay to rebrand yourself, or invest in a big live event. And by all means, if you expect your cash to be where it isn’t for the stage of business you are in, it will wreak havoc on your mindset.
b. Offerings. Do you have offerings that you know work, or are you in a mode of testing? There are stages in which you have something you have sold over and over again and you will focus on turning that thing into a system or a passive income stream, because you know it works. There are times in which you’ll need to try a bunch of things and see what sticks.
c. Support. Do you have the team of people and the technology in place to grow to the next level, or do you need to create some structures to support you in selling and fulfilling first? Your initial clients can come in with just you. If you are looking to significantly uplevel your results, you MUST build the support team structure for where you are going NOW. So many people think they can skip this, and create massive problems.
d. Prospects. Do you know what resources you have that will lead you to your next clients? If you have no list, you probably don’t want to launch a product. Take a look at your best assets right now. Is it your list, your network, your developed online marketing funnel, your local community, past clients who love you? Knowing this will help you decide which action to take next.
e. Skills. You need to know what your skills are, but also what stage you are in in terms of using them. Do you need to be leveraging what you’re already good at right now because you need quick results, or are you in a stage in which you can experiment and learn and grow by developing some new competencies. If you have mastered selling and serving 1-on-1 clients, maybe it is time to get your online funnel in order and experiment with ads in social media, for example.
Trying to be where you’re not in terms of resources brings on an incredible amount of stress. If your attitude about things isn’t in alignment with where you are, you will struggle and resist what you actually need to be doing. It is easy to look at what other people in your industry are doing and think you should model them. But you must remember that you don’t actually know where they are. You can’t see inside their mindset or their resources, so you don’t know why they are making those choices. You need someone to help you focus on you.

Examples

A business owner meets someone at a networking event who tells them they can help them with their SEO (search engine optimization). They say they can help them get on the first page of google. The business owner invests in this help.Only she has only ever brought in one client, and therefore is not clear on her message and her website is fuzzy at best. She does not have an opt-in box to collect names, and does not stay in touch with people who visit her website. She is nervous about where money will come from so she has a hard time selling people who do call her. The consultant recommends keywords based on looking at what gets searched, but they are not in alignment with what the business owner loves. The campaign gets no results. SEO can be a great investment for a business owner with a clear message, a confident sales team, and an online marketing funnel that converts. But for our business owner, not so much.

An inspired entrepreneur has a vision (a divine download perhaps?) of 200 people at an event put on by her. She decides that will be her next focus. She does have enough cash coming in to pay the bills through her 3 private clients, so she starts planning out the content for her event.Only she has just 150 people on her subscriber list (less than she wants in the room!). She has great ideas for content and is a great teacher, but she has never done an event, especially one in which she was selling herself. She doesn’t know anything about the logistics of selling tickets for an event like this, or how to work with the venue and plan out all of the details. She also has no idea that an event of that magnitude with a skilled event planner and all the high-class touches she pictures is often a 6-figure outlay of cash up front.The vision for the event is great! She just needs to know where she is in order to map out what to do to get there, and a realistic time frame. Build the list via her network, host a few 1-day events, learn to sell from the stage, begin saving the money to pay for the larger event.

If you don’t know where you are, I suggest you get really freaking serious about that, pronto.  First of all it eliminates a whole host of stressful thoughts when you are clear that the result you are getting is exactly what you need right now.  (EVEN the FAILURES).  Second, it is absolutely the only way to get to where you need to go.

If this article has stirred up a lack of confidence in where you are, please don’t stay there.  Email Support@AlignandProfit.com to apply for a VIP Strategy Day with me so we can create your action map.  If it’s a good match, Crista will set you up to talk with me directly to answer your questions!

 

A Defeat Moratorium – What to Do When You’re 3 Feet From Gold

October 10, 2012 by     Leave a Comment

“One of the most common causes of failure is the habit of quitting
when one is overtaken by temporary defeat.” ~ Napoleon Hill

One of my clients quotes the psychologist Erikson who claims that in adolescence we each need a period of “moratorium” in which we don’t make any decisions about who we are and what we’re about, so that we don’t “foreclose” on our dreams.

When our business is in adolescence (or any time really) I believe we need a moratorium in which we don’t draw any conclusions about whether what we’re doing is working. We just keep going, one step in front of the other, until it starts working. (Of course, it’s great to have a coach who can help you to discern when it’s really not working, and when you’re just in fear.)

I began thinking about this because I received a couple of emails this week from clients saying things that were in line with temporary defeat. They were wondering why things weren’t working and why it had gotten so hard.

And I had, as any coach reading this can relate to, that gut sinking feeling. Oh, crap, did we miss something? Is this person really off track?

Luckily I don’t entertain those thoughts long any more, though I do always take a step back and ask – did we miss something?

In my case this week, with each of these clients, it was simply a case of being “3 feet from gold.” Each of them had finally put a stake in the ground, demanding a certain level of clarity from themselves and their business, and begun a much bolder messaging path, or marketing approach.

And they got scared.

They’d felt so much relief at finally “figuring it out,” that they expected it to suddenly be easy.

And the truth is, that they are right. If they can get through the discomfort that happens at that spot in which they are “3 feet from gold,” all the riches are on the other side, and it does become easy. Until we grow again.

In Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich, Hill shares the story of a gold miner who stopped drilling and sold his equipment for junk, later to learn that he had quit just 3 feet from the gold. The junk man hired an expert and took his equipment back to the spot he’d quit, and with the right help, and made millions. The miner had had evidence that he was on the right path, but gave in to the temporary defeat of not initially finding the gold.

Success is generally disguised as temporary defeat.

Did you send a newsletter that was more heartfelt than usual, and were met with a higher opt-out rate? You felt defeat, but I say GOOD! You’re getting the people who don’t resonate with your Truth off of your list, and prepping your list to be hugely receptive to your next message. Unless you quit.

Did you invest in your business – in coaching, sponsoring, speaking, etc. – and it didn’t pay off immediately? Yet that experience moved you forward in such a way that your very next action is about to pay off big time, if you don’t pull back and quit investing!

Stay the Course

The miner in Think and Grow Rich learned his lesson and went on to make millions in his next endeavor, because he learned that quitting was not an option.

My “worst” moments in the history of my business have come with some of the very best lessons that serve me fully today. But this can only happen if you remain solid in your faith that you are on the right path, and that the gold is there. It has to be.

The closer we get to gold, the more it will feel like defeat, until it doesn’t. (Remember the Cycle of Proving?) You make a decision and begin to take action, and the exact thing shows up to validate your fear. It will look like defeat… like you’re doing it all wrong. You’re not.

A successful story of defeat

A beautiful woman entrepreneur had spent many years creating an image of herself as not very beautiful, not very decisive, not super confident, and very, well, “nice.”

She begins to grow a business that she is hugely passionate about. She is clear she wants to change the world.

She chooses her marketing message and begins to make some money. She brings in some clients that are very beautiful and very confident. She notices she feels nervous helping them because she does not see herself this way. Subtle sabotage begins to kick in, and her clients start to leave. It feels like major defeat.

But with some outside help she sees that this not defeat, it is simply the Universe reflecting back to her where her own certainty stops. She needs to see herself as beautiful and confident, and to begin making clear, bold decisions that may not feel “nice.”

She buys some new clothes and invests in a new hair cut and color. She begins saying things she used to hold back for fear of judgment. She starts to feel more confident and begins to make more money.

Then one day she reads her website and realizes that it no longer reflects what she believes, because as she had grown, so has her point of view. Not only that, but those photos are so out of date!

She decides to invest in rebranding herself. But she learns that the new website and photos, etc., will cost her more money than she has coming in right now! Defeat!

Well, it could be defeat, or it could be planting the seeds of desire to receive more money to enable the investment. She stretches and grows her own belief and begins to bring in new, higher-level clients. Her new website reflects her growth.

Next, she decides that her new, better clients would really benefit a lot from meeting each other. There is tremendous value in connecting them, and she loves to work in a group. She begins to plan an event. She has a picture of the people who will be in the room. She sees it going perfectly.

Then she learns the cost to host an event. She gets scared. She secures the date without a signed contract and begins to advertise, looking for proof that this event will work. The people who she pictured registering for her event tell her that they are not going to come. Event space on hold, no evidence of success. Temporary defeat.

At some level she’s been mentally preparing to quit.

But she won’t (she made a commitment to her coach after all :)). She needs to look for the gold. If the original people she envisioned aren’t coming, why might that be? Who might they be making space for? And she begins to look for the right people, and completely identifies a new tribe that she truly loves, way more than the original people she envisioned.

We Can’t Know Until We Grow

If you read this story and feel exhausted, well, you might not be in the right business! As we build a thriving business, we’ll meet many little defeats along the way. And we can’t know, or see them clearly, until we grow past them.

The gold doesn’t come from having it all go perfectly. Much of the time, it comes from simply allowing yourself to be with the discomfort of a perceived failure long enough to see the success on the other side.

  • Create a strategy and stick with it long enough to measure the tangible results.
  • Speak your Truth, knowing that it will make people uncomfortable and some will leave.
  • Invest in a strategy that you want to make work, and execute the heck out of it with excellence.

Most entrepreneurs would never have started if they’d known their path would involve so much temporary defeat. And what a shame that would be! What if we can love the defeat as much as we love the victory, knowing that it’s all part of the journey to gold?

If you have one of those moments in which your fear is screaming, “stop,” and the tiny voice of your Truth says, “what if?,” call me. You can borrow my faith until you have your own.

 

Send a Bigger Boat!

September 26, 2012 by     Leave a Comment

It breaks my heart when I talk with entrepreneurs who know they are called to big things, and they are waiting to be hit over the head before they take the steps to make them happen! And they choose to do what I did for years: read books and get advice from people who are giving it away for free, and struggle inside to find their voice. Meanwhile they avoid anyone who can give them what they really need because A) they don’t want to face the change it requires or B) they think it needs to look a certain way.

There are two areas I want you to think about here.
  1. Ideas, sparks of ideas, or inner nudgings about what to offer or teach or how to market in your business that you have ignored.
  2. Opportunities to get support and work with people who have unique expertise about where you want to go that you have allowed to pass you by.

I want to share a story here – I’ve heard it before and read it again recently in Debbie Ford’s Dark Side of the Light Chasers. It was begging me to share with you this week.

Because I almost ignored the marketing/ teaching/ business idea that called me to invest in a video day at Hell Yeah Studios. My mind found all kinds of ways to talk myself out of it, as if it was a bad idea. I came up with at least 3 other ideas between the time I made the decision and last week when I filmed my videos, each one threatening to pull me off track.

We often ignore our opportunities to be lifted to higher ground by way of ignoring our gut knowing and the divine intervention that comes in the form of a well-time investment opportunity. We tell ourselves we’ll think about it, pray for clarity, or meditate on it. Yet all results require action. Quantum results require action without understanding.

Prayer without action is not prayer, it’s dreaming. How can God (the Universe, Source, Spirit, Energy) help us if we won’t help ourselves? I once heard a story of a man who had a deep faith in God. He was often heard telling his friends that his chaotic life would work out because God would take care of him. One day a huge storm caused serious flooding in the town where this man lived. While other members of the community packed their belongings and fled, the man stayed put, believing that God would take care of him. The water began to seep under his doors and through the windows. A fire truck drove by and rescue workers yelled to the man, “Come on, you can’t stay here!”"No,” he said to them, “God will take care of me!”

Soon the water was waist-high, the streets turned to rivers. A Coast Guard boat came past the man’s house. The crew yelled out to him, “Swim out and come on board!” “No,” the man yelled back. “God will take care of me.”

The rain kept pouring down until the man’s entire house was flooded. Then a helicopter flew over his house and the pilot spotted the man praying on his roof. Lowering the ladder, the pilot got on the loudspeaker, “You down there, grab hold of the ladder and we’ll take you to safety.” Again, the man proclaimed his conviction, “God will take care of me.”

Finally, the man drowned. At the pearly gates of heaven, the man had never felt more betrayed. “My God,” he said, “I put my faith in you and prayed to you for my rescue. You told me you would always take care of me, yet when I needed you most, you were not there.”

“What do you mean?” replied God, “I sent a fire truck, a boat and a helicopter, what more do you want?”

Where in your business are you waiting for the Universe to send you a bigger boat?

Are you looking for a more obvious signal? Are you discounting your ideas, thinking they should be bigger, more clever, more perfect, or, worst of all, more “normal?”

What opportunities are whizzing by you, when your gut is saying, “I want this,” or “I need this,” but your head is finding evidence that you need to keep waiting for God, or someone else, or some magical circumstance, to rescue you? What are you really waiting for? Action without full understanding is the key to the result you desire.

P.S. If you want to find out what you are really waiting for, Module 1 of the Biz School for Aligned Entrepreneurs will help you do just that. I call them Hidden Commitments, and we begin to dismantle them right away in lesson 1! (Click here to learn more!)