What would it take to get more from your business?
For some business owners, this is a bit of a conundrum because they are often already feeling overworked and under-rewarded. Being an entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart. People often assume that business owners have more freedom than those that are in an employee situation. More often, the truth is, you don’t clock out….EVER. Your business is always on your mind. If you aren’t hustling then business isn’t coming through the door and mouths don’t get fed and roofs aren’t over head, clothes aren’t on backs …you know the story. Perhaps more accurately, ‘the story that we tell”.
Is it true?
How do you know?
What if it doesn’t have to be this way?
What if you could get more out of your business so you could get more out of your life? It’s part strategy and part mindset. You have to have a clear plan of action and a clear belief that it is possible and be willing to tell the story of the outcome you want even if it goes against the grain and is the road less traveled.
What if you had a crystal clear personal vision that was in alignment with your core values and allowed for all your hopes and dreams? Your business is the vehicle by which these hopes and dreams come true. So often we get caught in the rat race of being a human ‘doing’ vs a human ‘being’ that we forget to really live. We get so bound by the work that we fail to enjoy its fruits…or even remember they exist.
I have a personal mission to help business owners get more out of each day in their business. Your day is simply your life in miniature. How do your days look? Are you counting the blessings and the joys of the accomplishments or looking at the to-do list and feeling like you fell short?
With the right systems and structures in your business you can have more freedom, more fun AND more profit. That’s right I used ‘structure and systems’ and ‘FREEDOM’ all in the same sentence. Structure is what will provide you freedom. It is the systems that give you time and energy back so you have freedom to do more. More things that make an impact, more things that bring you joy, more things that give back to the world, more things that get you closer to your personal vision and the lifestyle you want to lead… MORE EVERYTHING!
It is always my sincerest hope that people are doing things they love to earn a living or grow a business around and that you get joy in your work days. The reality is it can’t all be work. Even for those of us who can’t tell the difference between working and playing becasue we love our work so much…we still need time unplugged to recharge and connect with friends and love ones.
“A master in the art of living draws no sharp distinction between his work and his play; his labor and his leisure; his mind and his body; his education and his recreation. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence through whatever he is doing, and leaves others to determine whether he is working or playing. To himself, he always appears to be doing both.” —Lawrence Pearsall Jaacks
Everyone should enjoy that which he describes. It is my personal favorite quote.
Most often business owners simply lack the tools to get the most out of their bank of time and energy each day, week, month and year. Check out this FREE tool I created for you to master your time and productivity and harness the power of your business….so you can get more freedom to lead your life by design. If you want to take the implementation deeper, check out the free masterclass that comes with it.
I asked a lot of questions here…ponder them. Share in the comments below. What did you come up with? Where do you need the most support?
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Ever been to Dysfunction Junction?
It’s that place where our dysfunction becomes our function or the new normal.
Do you sometimes feel like chaos has become your daily state of mind…that ‘new normal’ I just mentioned?
Sometimes we tell a story that if we aren’t at full tilt crazy than we are lazy…and our perception of being ‘lazy’ lets the gremlins of Guilt and Judgment and Shame into the car. They fight over who gets to ride shotgun…and sometimes who gets to drive. If you let them, they will have you buckled up in the back seat, or worse tied up in the trunk with a gag.
Somedays it’s easy to wonder who is leading the charge. The circus gets of control, the monkeys are in charge and it has become a three rings shit show of epic proportions.
You are not alone.
More and more people are starting to notice the crazy is at a scary level, and they don’t even know where to start to change it. We have so many stories we tell around it, so many Jones to keep up with and compare ourselves to and not enough hours in the day to get to the bottom of the to do list that seems to get longer vs shorter.
I was there once too. It happens one layer at a time, little by little. You think you have got your arms around it and you are in complete control, until one day…you aren’t. You can’t even find the edges of it to get your arms back around it. The chaos and a life out of balance are controlling you.
There is a path to freedom, but first you have to clue in on what you want it to look like. Who do you want to be? How do you want to live? It is is not as easy as it sounds when life steals your normal. Sometimes you can’t even remember what it looks like anymore or who you used to be when life ran at a slower pace.
I was caught in the trap of life living me. I was miserable. I cried myself to sleep, cried myself to work, the bathroom at lunch, on the way to pick up kids, in the shower…where ever someone wasn’t looking. You see where I am going with all the tears? My health was declining. <Insert high blood sugar, thyroid problems, heartaches, headaches, back pain, weight gain, general anxiousness, crappy skin and hair and general bitchy demeanor here>. The side effects of stress and lack of fulfillment can amputate years from your life and your spirit.
I had to pull myself out of it for the sake of my health and my family. I had to set a better example for what life was about and what I wanted my daughters to emulate. I took steps to live with more freedom, more joy, more time and more purpose….best thing was there some fringe benefits too: better relationships and more money. Money can help with the freedom. Freedom leads to choice. Who doesn’t want some of those side effects?
Check out this tool I created for you here. I have created a 7 step system, The Balance Blueprint, to help you start to dig yourself out and avoid some of the pitfalls that befell me. Its FREE! The path to destruction is overwhelm. When we are overwhelmed we don’t know where to start and when we don’t know where to start we don’t take action. This keeps us stuck. This is your clear plan of action, one step at a time. I even offer you a free masterclass at the end. Check it out here!
You can also and find your Balance IQ. See where your wreck is…do you need the biggest help in your business or at home? There are tools for each! We are here to serve.
Drop your comments below and tell me about your biggest life balance challenge? What have you already tried?
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Let’s talk about that other 4 letter S word….SELL!
People hear the word ‘SELL’ and they think sleazy, skeevy, used cars, cheesy smile, slicked backed hair…’Boy, have I got a deal for you!’… and now I need to go take a shower.
We get so conditioned to not ever want to be ‘ that guy’ (or gal) or ‘sell anyone something that we shy away from it in our own businesses.
Some of you know me in the business and lifestyle coaching capacity, others of you don’t know me at all. Either way, most clients don’t realize that I have an entire sales platform of my business where I teach people how to sell authentically and in a very client-centered way and that I build, manage, and serve on sales teams in the corporate setting (by word of mouth only). My point in telling you this is, I understand the stigma as I have been on all sides of the sales experience.
I recall a time when my mom asked me what I did for a corporate client once and I told her, I was in sales and was building a team to do outbound calling to their leads for an international coaching company and she said, “Oh Gaaawd, I hang up on you people all the time.” YUP….’you people’. No one wants to be ‘those’ people. We have all had that experience right!?, where you hung up on the telesales person?
Why? because it sucks when people try to sell you something that you don’t want or think you need…or have ever even heard of and do it in a pushy, won’t take no for an answer, you can’t get off your own phone kind of way.
However, People LOVE to be sold to when they are getting something they want and its done in a way where it elevates them and helps them reach the goal. We become ‘those people’ when we are solely objective focused, numbers based, and monetarily driven without regard for the journey we are taking people on. People don’t want to be taken for a ‘ride’.
I like to leverage the Platinum Rule vs Golden Rule here. We are all familiar with the Golden Rule right? “Treat others the way you want to be treated.” Well, if you are afraid of sales and you hate to be sold to or like its some sort of violation, and you don’t know what it feels like to experience it as a collaborative, done for and with you not TO you process, ….you won’t do it, in any capacity.
Let’s talk about the Platinum Rule: “Treat others the way they want to be treated”
Get out of your own way and give them what THEY want, how they want it. They want to be heard. They want to be understood, and they WANT to be served! They even want to be sold to if they can see and feel the value. They want permission to say yes to themselves from an outside source, and they will take that permission to heart if it feels like you are in it with and for them…not for you. Much like you, HOW they want that may differ. Put yourself in the shoes of the potential client/customer. This is true for everything from widgets to high end services. Seek first to understand… #platinumrule. Treat them how they want to be treated. Support them based on how they are wired and make them feel supported and you have a ‘lifer’. This is how ‘Ride or Die’ fans are born. Really listen for what is not being said, build a relationship…not just seeing the end result of winning a contract.
People break contracts, but they don’t break relationships.
Make sure when you are ‘selling’ the receiver is receiving not resisting. Are they being served? Do we truly have their best interests at heart? Can we say with integrity that we have enough trust that the people who are meant to work with us will and that coercive tactics simply for the sake of numbers have no place in our code of conduct?
I can often be heard telling my sales clients, “There are people who can get you higher numbers and higher conversions. If the numbers are your singular focus and highest priority and what is most important to you, I am not your gal.” With that exclusive priority comes higher attrition, increased payment chasing, and more customer complaints because we sacrificed ‘right fit’ clients for the sake of the numbers….for the sake of ‘THE SALE’. Let’s also not discount you have a higher percentage of people it sucks to serve (see the last blog post about PITAs). In the end you don’t win and just as importantly neither do they. I like to play the ‘long game’ I build relationships not contracts, this translates to higher retentions, greater client experience, and satisfaction leading to better client results, more referrals, and a bigger joy to serve because we have less PITA’s ( yup…you really gotta read that last post on the soapbox)…OH and more money! YEEEESSS! I still care about you making more money! You don’t have to ride the numbers so hard with this approach because you have less ‘churn’ to compensate for. A fringe bonus: you build a tribe of amazing people who are like-minded and collaborative not competitive. They make the world a happier place and love to pay you what you are worth.
It can take a big mindset shift to be successful at sales, it requires confidence in your process and in the experience you create for those you want to serve and for yourself. You have to treat it like a collaborative experience. It is, in fact, the prelude to the dance you will do when you work together. Show them now who you are and how they will be treated. That depth of authenticity and heart do not go unnoticed.
Brian Tracy said, “The definition of a sale is a transfer of enthusiasm.”
This concept is independent of the skill sets so many organizations and leaders spend time and money to train on. How do you show up to the conversion conversation? It matters! Be a passionate leader, take a fierce and loving stand for their possibility. Don’t fall prey to the fear of sounding ‘salesey’, or being pushy and then let go of their hand when the objections start to fly. It’s when they need you most. Lovingly stay with them, lead them through the dark and help them get through their fears. You can only show up as your best self if you feel great about the process and don’t associate any part of the experience with something that requires slick hair and a creepy smile with a cheesy hand gesture.
You have to master the sale to be successful in business. Livelihood and sustainability depend on conversion conversations. What parts of this process do you love and hate? Do you have a process? Where are your biggest stumbling blocks?
Would you like to come to an ‘’ask me anything about sales’ open office hours style call? Let me know in the comments and I will let you know when the next one is being hosted.
Without the sale, you don’t get clients/customers.
Need a script that feels authentic to your voice and allows you to stand in your truth with confidence? Grab a spot on the calendar here and let’s see how I can help you define your sales process if you don’t currently have one, or refine what you do have so you get more conversions.
Save your seat here
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We all know about pitas; those delicious fluffy bread pockets that you can stuff with all sorts of yummy things. These heavenly food bits are not to be mistaken with a P.I.T.A.; a cute, though not so tasty acronym for Pain In The Ass. What am I talking about? Clients/Customers (though they can be friends or family too)….Pain in the ass clients (or other forces for negativity in our lives). We have all had them, we will all likely have them again. The law of averages practically guarantees that the more clients/customers we see the more PITAs we are confronted with. We DO have control over how many and how often AND we can learn from each one that sneaks through our defenses. Why is a little thing like a PITA client so destructive and why am I making a big deal about it? I’m so glad you asked! First let’s talk about how they happen.
Reasons we let them through the gates, even when our better judgment is poking at us:
-scarcity or lack mentality, aka there isn’t enough or what if another one doesn’t come for a while
-fear of missing out, aka what if they really are great underneath all that truth seeping out their face, and what if another one isn’t there to fill the spot
-we tell ourselves bullshit stories, aka “I love a challenge”, “I”m sure they are not like that all the time” (see the last blog post about when people show you who they are), “They can’t be as crazy as my radar is telling me they are”, and “I can handle it.”
Reasons we should have a highly skilled border patrol for these folks (No, I did NOT say ‘build a wall’):
-PITA’s wear you out…I mean GRIND YOU DOOOWWWN, got nothin’ left for NO body.
-They take up 80% of your best energy and attention and only bring you 20% of your revenues.
-Sometimes they are a negative net and they actually cost you money.
-They are NEVER happy…and they talk shit to their friends about it (there is such a thing as bad publicity despite what some say).
-In a group setting, they can become a cancer for your other clients/customers.
-They take up valuable real estate on your roster that could otherwise be occupied by ‘right fit’ people who could sit at your feet and listen to every word you say with reverence.
-They don’t support your business with referrals or strengthen your circle of influence, in fact, they burn it down from the inside out. Anyone smell smoke?
-You are constantly chasing them for money.
-They show up late and often miss appointment entirely usually followed by a million excuses or zero acknowledgment or apology. This costs you time and money.
-They walk all over you at the cost your self esteem, confidence and credibility.
If you are offended by my saying any of this…you might be a PITA and I might be serving as a trigger or a mirror for you. Don’t judge it, just observe it. Notice what you notice. Maybe you were a PITA once but have learned your lesson. It is always good for us to self-evaluate when engaging with those who provide us mentorship and service. Do I ever do this to the people or businesses I pay patron to? Do a little ‘check yourself before you wreck yourself’. It’s OK to ‘“rock your paradoxes” as Danielle Laporte would say. “Be strong in your preferences AND be easy to please”. Being assertive and knowing what you want is not being a PITA. It IS being empowered and assertive in a respectful way. Being abusive and lacking in respect, never having anything nice to say, and generally being a life sucking force….that is a PITA. DON’T BE A PITA. They don’t get invited to the fun parties.
So how do we avoid them?
-Take a look at your marketing. Is it attracting and speaking to the right people? If you are getting a lot of PITAs it doesn’t necessarily mean you are a pleaser and can’t say no. You may simply be attracting the wrong demographic. It may be time to look at your message and who it speaks to and tweak it, or simply tweak ‘where’ you are being seen with it.
-Manage your mindset. If you are saying yes to the wrong people ask your self why. Are you struggling financially and something feels better than nothing? Need help with this? Call me… TODAY!! Let’s stop that cycle.
-Have strong preferences and a clear vision of what your ideal clients look and feel like. Use that vision like a navigation system. It is your compass.
-Exercise your boundaries. Flex the muscle of saying no…unapologetically and often. There is a nice way to do it. I can show you how.
What does a great client feel like? The unsavory truth is, some business owners don’t know because they, without realizing it. built a business on less than ideal clients and they have all the struggles that come with them to prove it.
Here are a few notes on what great clients have meant to me:
-They make you feel like you are a gift to this world…and it makes you blush.
-They tell you often and without hesitation how much impact you have had on their lives.
-They tell all the people they know. They shout it from the rooftops and are your ‘ride or die’ fans.
-You feel confident and valued.
-They pay you…on time, what you are worth and without complaint.
-They take action toward what you talk about and they get results.
-They are always looking for ways to improve and play a bigger game so they can give bigger to this world…and they know they need your help to do it.
Damn!…dont those people feel good?!
I am so blessed to say I currently do not have a single PITA on my roster and I have a few platforms in my business that I serve under which based on the law of averages, increases my odds of having one (knock on wood I stay in ‘practicing what I teach LOL). I really have THE VERY BEST clients and feel honored and privileged every day to serve them.
So if I have such great clients why am I talking about PITAs? I didn’t always have great clients and many of my clients didn’t start out with the best clients either. They had a pile of headaches, both literally and figuratively, they lost sleep and stomach lining, some were eating Xanax like Pez (not judging), and facing burnout. Work wasn’t fun and life outside of work was on a fast decline. Together we turned it around! Better balance= bigger and better and more badass fulfillment.
Want a seat next to this elite group of people, drop me a note, or grab a spot on my calendar. CLICK THE LINK HERE
In the meantime, drop me a comment below and tell me your best PITA story? How did you get out of it (maybe you are still in it)? Have you learned your lesson? What strategies do you employ to keep your roster squeaky clean? Got anything to add above lists? Can I fit another question in here? Gimme the dish!
If you need help in your business cleaning up your roster…might be clients, might be vendors. eek…it might be people who sit next to you at holiday dinner and send you birthday cards in the mail. I can help!
Grab a seat here
P.S. All this talk about pitas and you KNOW one of you is going to be making a run to the grocery store today. #pitasfordinner 😉
P.P.S. I know I said the next one would be shorter…my bad. #loquacious Google that one. It can be your $5 word of the day
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OK…so it has been crazy quiet around here…I know…I know. I could offer all the reasons (excuses) but I will spare us all and not digress. What I will focus on is the fact that I am here and I am back on the soap box with plans to be a regular because everyone that knows me knows I am not a woman of few words. There is always something to talk about or express right?! Since it’s my first in awhile please indulge me on the length and stay with me to the end! I’ll strive to keep it shorter next time.
So here is what is on my mind this week. When people show you who they are…believe them. Read that again. Not ‘tell’ you….SHOW you. This is a concept I am not unfamiliar with and yet I can still be caught off guard or surprised by it. Sometimes even after a year plus of repetition!! What do I mean by this? How many times have you had an experience where you can look back and see a pattern in how someone acts vs talks? I can almost always in hindsight see that someone has repeatedly shown me who they truly are and what they really value despite telling me something different. My most recent experiences have been in cases where people talk about who they are and say what is important to them in their business, (don’t we all do this in some form or another?) but behind the curtain, they don’t live it. In fact, there have been times where I watch it in STARK contrast. This has come in the form of how they treat their teams, or service people, their family, talk about their clients or competitors etc.
I have discovered in my years on this planet there are some things (OK, a lot of things) that are specifically important to me come hell or high water. A couple of them are authenticity and honesty. It’s kind of simple: Be who you say you are, do what you say you are going to do and tell the truth, not a ‘version’ of the truth or a ‘spin’ and own your shit when you screw something up or drop the ball (personal responsibility is part of truth telling). In the coaching world these things sometimes seem a bit tricky. I know that sounds totally stupid. How is authenticity and honesty, for example, ’tricky’? Pretty cut and dried right?! Here is what I mean. I am finding that the more you have to talk about how honest and authentic you are…the less you might really be ‘behind the curtain’ or ‘off the stage’. If we are authentic, do we have to talk about it all the time? Does it have to appear in every bit of our marketing and do we have to use those specific words every time we take the stage or promote ourselves? Or do we SHOW it? I am all for marketing and talking about what you do and who you help and HOW you do it. It is a vital part of a business, and what I am referring to is talking about our values, vs living and demonstrating them. Live your truth whatever it is. Own it like a boss. If you don’t like what is behind the curtain, don’t pretend and fake it and only talk it…walk it and change it. We are all human. It is not always neat and tidy back there. Sometimes life gets messy. Who hasn’t shoved some shit in a closet or under a bed when unexpected company is coming? I think the key is in how you show up on a consistent basis.
I believe this matters in all aspects of our life, but for a moment, let’s talk about how it relates to business. How you do anything, is how you do everything. Especially when we are in personal growth and development or business growth and development, who you say you are and how you show up determines your success and longevity in the industry. What does your business stand for? What are your values as a company? How do you like to serve your patrons? What do you want to be said about you in your absence? I find these things are often aligned with our personal values and moral code….and that is where authenticity comes from in business. Personal and business codes of ethics and values must be aligned…and demonstrated through action.
How many of you have taken the time to put down on paper your personal vision: what you stand for, how you want to live, who you want to be? What about your business vision? Do you see a pattern or parallel between the two?
I recently had this beautiful book made for myself. You can catch the pictures on Facebook attached to a link to this post on my biz page if you want to see, www.facebook.com/thebalancemaven. We have all heard about vision boards. I love them! I have decided to craft a ‘vision book’ where I will park all my aspirations and things that reflect my life by design. My hope is that anyone could pick this up and feel like they have a grasp on who I am, what I stand for, and how I choose to live; full of my soul, spirit, and truth. It will also be a heartfelt representation of my business and how I show up in the world …because what you see is what you get. I hope for it to be a legacy item, and something that my daughters enjoy spending time with because it is so,…well, ‘me’. I secretly (now not so secretly) hope they fight over it when I’m gone and it gets put in ‘timeshare’ where they take turns on who gets to host it. 🙂 Want to do this with me? Make your own vision book? We could do a free live masterclass online and I can walk you through my process! I will even share my custom, old school, bookmaker so you can have your own gorgeous, handcrafted book made if you want. Let me know in comments below!
In short….here’s the point of it all. Show the world who you are. Lead with your actions and your presence, and when you choose to lead with words make sure they consistently match your actions inside and out. I strive to always do my best at ‘what you see is what you get’ I am far from perfect folks…but my hope is people will always be able to say that I lead by example and that I carry myself with a universal truth on stage and off, both with clients and with my friends and family.
How do you show up on and off the stage (literal or figurative)? Is there a difference? Do your core values come through? I would love to hear your thoughts in comments. Tell me what this brings up for you or about experiences you have had!
Want to talk about how to craft a business that serves from your place of truth and aligns with your personal values? Click here and drop me a note!
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There are those that would say that work life balance is dead or, there is no such thing. Some even go so far as, “You can’t have your cake and eat it too,” “You can’t be a good parent and have a career. You have to choose” More even profess that work life ‘integration’ is the ticket.
With the weekly work hours getting longer, technology allowing us to be largely ‘ on call’ or tethered to work even when we are not there, parents being faced with children who are largely committed to extra curricular activities and clubs in parents’ ‘free time’, more and more people are slipping into burnout.
I believe work life ‘balance’ is simply an issue of semantics. Often when we think of balance we imagine a scale with a fulcrum that has two sides which have to achieve equality in order to stay suspended. In my experience balance is more of a rhythm that we achieve. The scale is always in motion, just as our lives are always dynamic not static. The key is to maintain a rhythm that does not allow one side or the other to dramatically dip too far slamming to the ground and sending the other end flying. This ‘balance’ can be achieved through integration of all aspects of our lives while creating wholeness. Most people share a simple and similar desire to create ease, joy and meaningful engagement between all the interconnected roles, relationships and responsibilities that make up their lives. In my practice, this what is meant when we talk about ‘work-life balance’.
The reality is both of these aspects of our lives, work and play, at various times will compete with each other, our attention and energy will flow more in favor of one than the other. The goal is to have a depth of clarity for the big picture and what we want our life experience to look like as a whole and strive for ‘relationship’ between the two. What do I mean by this? Just like any quality relationship there is some give and take and understanding. One person has to have the other person’s back and pick up the slack sometimes to give the other what they need to grow. Our lives are no different with respect to work and play. We are in a constant state of prioritizing. If our priorities are out of alignment with our bigger vision for our work and play arenas, we start to feel ‘out of balance’ or fragmented. It is simply a symptom that we have pieced ourselves out too much. When this happens we have to assess where we are and get clear on what we want our experience to look like. Once we have achieved this we can use this vision as a compass or a navigation system for how we prioritize the cornucopia of opportunities that show up in our experience. It then becomes clear what we say yes to and what we say no to, always pivoting and in motion. It is an awareness we create for where we are in time and space with respect to how much we can handle and when we need to adjust.
In short, balance simply means you find a rhythm and equality among the various arenas of your life so you feel supported inspired and purposeful. It is not specifically rooted in the idea that you give any one area more attention than the other. You are instead gaining value from each, creating a counter balance that leads to ultimate personal and professional fulfillment. I believe that is the end game of work life balance: personal and professional fulfillment that leads to wholeness.
Work like balance is NOT dead. It is possible for all aspects of our two worlds to coexist together. We can have our cake and eat it too. You can be an excellent and supportive parent with a deeply meaningful career. We simply have to choose it and catch the rhythm to the beat of our own drum.
I would love to hear your thoughts on this issue and your beliefs and experiences. What challenges do you face in the war between work and play? Is the struggle real?
If you need support in your own war, sign up for a free ‘get acquainted call’ and we will have virtual coffee and see how I can help!
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