After graduating from a life coach training program, I had big plans and leaped to have a full-time coaching practice. “Go big or go home” is a philosophy I’ve been known to use at times in my life, and this was one of those times. I was so excited to have found a career I was passionate about and helped others live their best lives. So I rented office space, had my name put up on the wall outside, and was ready to go!
I wish I could report that it was a great success, that I reached my goals surrounding the number of clients and income, but that wasn’t the case.
Just recently, at a networking meeting, we had a prompting question to create discussion, and that question was: “what did you learn in your first year of business?”.
What a great question. Now ten years into being a life coach and looking back, it seems obvious! I was totally and utterly under-supported in my first year of business.
What was missing?
- I did not have my own coach that I met regularly (crazy, right?!)
- Regular connection and collaboration with other life and business coaches
- Structures that held me accountable to being my own boss. For example, how many sample sessions did I need to provide to be hired by a prospective client? And how many calls did I need to make to book those sample sessions?
Like anything, when we start something new, we haven’t built up the metaphorical muscle to be good at it yet and benefit from support and accountability while we’re strengthening that muscle. I hadn’t built up my muscles strength yet, or my confidence for that matter.
I’m sharing my experience with you to benefit from what was in my blind spots and assist with getting your business off the ground and achieving your goals without making the same mistakes that I did.
My recommended Supports for Success when starting or growing your business:
I know, I’m biased, and honestly, I don’t know of any other structure that combines these powerful ingredients in quite the same way: accountability from love and rigor, empowering you to utilize your strengths while pointing to your blind spots, connection, challenging you to stretch in the areas that are holding you back and believing in you even more than you believe in yourself.
2. Colleague Connections –
Build up a network of folks you admire and trust and create a relationship that serves you both. There’s no “water cooler” talk when you’re a solopreneur. It is not only lonely but limits you from learning quick tips or new ideas from those who get your industry and have maybe tried things you haven’t.
3. Get Out There, Intentionally –
Sitting at your computer waiting for your email notifications to ping or phone to ring isn’t going to get you that thriving practice of your dreams. Websites and social media are excellent tools to put ourselves out there, and in my experience of myself and my clients, they are also places to ‘hide behind’. If your mantra is “My website is up, now I just wait for people to call,” you may be waiting a long time. Create a structure with accountability that has you reaching out to ‘X’ amount of people per day. People buy from you when they know, like, and trust you, so put yourself out there as a person and not as a website.