My last Stitch Fix of summer came and it was a mixed bag, but trying on made a big difference. As always, polka dots for the win!
I took a break from Stitch Fix last month, so I was super excited to get back into it because I love getting those surprise boxes. My stylist Sharon is seriously the best ever. She watches my videos and checks my Pinterest board without fail. One day I hope to actually meet her so I can give her a huge hug!
There was a home run item, and a few duds this time.
Stitch Fix is a monthly fashion subscription service in which you pay a $20 styling fee and they send you a curated box of awesome clothes to try on. Pay for only what you keep. It sometimes takes a few tries to get in the swing of things, and yes you can get a bad box, but if you love surprises, don’t have time to shop because you are busy with kids and being a kick ass coach or entrepreneur, it is the best.
Golden Tote has a lock on cute, breezy summer style, especially if you are over forty and love fashion but not fussiness.
July 2016 was a great month for Goldies! There were a ton of cute chosens and excellent surprises. I loved my tote! See what I chose, the surprise items I got along with my full try on and review! I got some beautiful chosen items including a gorgeous, swingy black maxi dress, creamy linen blazer perfect for summer nights. I added on a tapestry tote bag with pink tassels and an adorable watermelon print wallet.
I got some incredible surprise items too! Watch the video to see the full try on and review of my entire tote.
For those if you new to Golden Tote, it’s a monthly fashion subscription service in which you purchase a tote filled with clothing for $149. You choose two items and they surprise you with the rest! In the past it was a all or nothing type deal, in which you had to keep the entire tote, or return the whole shebang.
This policy created a robust Facebook trading group which you can check out here:
Now that I am three years into my life coaching business, there some key things that I wish I would have known and done that would have saved me a little time and a lot heartache.
Being a freshly trained life coach is an exciting time because it feels like you have found your calling, and the thought of helping people accomplish things they never dreamed possible is so exciting. You want your business to be set up and rolling like… yesterday and the thought of waiting a year to really get on your feet seems like way too long to wait for actual paying clients.
If I could go back and give my brand new life coaching self a bit of wisdom, here are the things I would share.
Mistake #1: Doing too much too soon.
This was a painful lesson to learn because when I became certified with the Beautiful You Coaching Academy there was a part of me that felt like I could do it all because I loved my training so much and I felt like I finally had all the right tools to get my fledgling coaching business off the ground.
I was so motivated that I created an online community right away for Heart Centered Coaches. I had a really big vision that I was going to have a community in which I would deliver monthly capsules of content, interviews and trainings for coaches on a subscription basis. And it was actually a great idea. But I got 5 months into the project, and realized that I had bitten off way more then I could chew, so I had to pause it. The problem was, I didn’t have the critical bandwidth I needed to sustain it alone.
In addition to trying to find new coaching clients, I was also trying to create content, schedule interviews, design & maintain 2 websites, and create content for my YouTube channel. I just couldn’t keep at the balls in the air.
And it felt like a failure to pull the plug on a great idea. But I wasn’t in reality for the amount of time and energy I had to pull it off.
My suggestion for new coaches is to really get focused on building your one on one practice first. Learn what people are truly struggling with. There will be plenty of time to go one to many when you have more cash flow and can get the right support for your big ideas. Work on your one on one coaching first because not only is it your critical foundation, that work will inform your area of focus.
Mistake #2: Trying to be an expert.
This is a really common mistake for new coaches, especially young coaches. You feel like you have to be wining at life, and have it all together, or you’re afraid you might be thrust in the position of having to dispense advice and pearls of wisdom.
This is a really normal feeling. However, a coaches job is not to have a prescriptive on your clients life, or even do a diagnostic on what is wrong with her life so you can help her fix it.
That’s the last thing you want to do. You are not looking under her hood and giving her an estimate of what’s wrong.
Instead think of it like being the best road trip buddy ever. You are asking her where she wants to go. You are her ally who provides unconditional positive regard and support so she can determine her destination and create a map.
You might help her read the map, or point out the fact that she is about to drive off a cliff, but we don’t tell her where to go and how to get there. To do so would be to deny her the transformation she wants. You are sitting beside her in the passenger seat looking out at the same road ahead.
You aren’t expert of anyones life except your own.
Mistake #3: Not knowing how much time you actually have to devote to coaching.
This is a little bit similar to number one, but the big difference is this. Often new coaches are juggling transition jobs, families, pets, and any number of essential daily things. The amount of time that you actually have to devote to coaching could be far less than you think. The remedy here is to calendar everything.
Create the time slots on your calendar specifically for coaching, and be sure to be realistic about how much time it takes for support activities such as writing notes, follow up emails, marketing, blogging and everything else that goes into building a new business. You may find that at the end of the day, you only have two times slots a week for actual coaching. It’s very sobering.
Being a calendar ninja is one of my real weaknesses, but I practice and have gotten better with organizing my google calendar. And it has made a hug impact on my business because I have been able to identify time leaks, and where I am saying yes to things that end up hurting my bottom line by taking away the time I have to devote to building revenue.
Mistake #4: Trying force clarity around your voice and your avatar.
I’m going to say something that you probably don’t want to hear. Development takes time and deliberate practice. Part of development is figuring out through action who you can serve best with your coaching. And that means taking on pro bono clients, taking time to understand exactly what you do for your clients and to be able to communicate that in a clear way so that people understand. If you aren’t sure, it’s ok. It just means that you need more practice.
I wish I could tell you that you can sit at your desk and write a perfect description of who your ideal client is, but it probably won’t be accurate. So how do you know what kind of coach you are and in what niche to point your boat? Start talking to people.
I know that sounds really obvious, but if you are anything like me you have at some point agonized over your freaking avatar. Coaching is unique in that it is more art than science. So in a way, to define a crisp avatar before finding your footing as a coach is like painting a portrait, and saying exactly who are you creating that painting for before you have even met them. You could guess, but trying to skip this essential stage of transitioning from the discovery stage to the development stage is impossible. Keep practicing and your ideal client will emerge.
Mistake #5: Not being able to say exactly what you can do for people.
Ok, this is a hard one. Because, I just said that you need time to figure it out. And you do. However, there are some basic tenets to coaching that the average person doesn’t understand. I guarantee that when you tell the majority of people that you are a life coach, they either have no idea what that means, or they think that you are doing something that doesn’t provide real value.
If someone asks me what I do, I say I’m a life coach and ask them if they know what that is? I’m genuinely curious if they know.
If they want to know more about what I do, I’ll say:
I help people change they way they feel about their life and what they want to achieve by helping them identify a life vision, and goals that are in line with their vision as well as providing support and accountability.
Who doesn’t want that?
That feels clear, tangible and exciting for people. And leading from there with that kind of clarity will allow you an in to share more colorfully, when you can bring in all of your interests, techniques and methods later.
Mistake #6: Being too hard on yourself for not having it all figured out.
If coaching is your calling, you have a lifetime of learning, reading, personal growth, writing, joy, and deepening your ability to look forward too. Actually if you are a coach, you are a pioneer. Modern life coaching is an emergent field that is being shaped by your input.
Serving others on their wellness journey, and to become self actualized is a new thing. This didn’t exist for our parents, so don’t worry too much about the race. Life coaching is a nascent language that is poised to really grow and change.
We are the early adopters of this field.
Yes, there have been life coaches in the past, that discovered that there is a place between therapy and purposeful achievement that needed filling. In therapy you help someone dig through their past and support them to understand how that past effects current behaviors. After that work is done there, then a whole new chapter arises when you are ready to start creating a robust life on the foundation you have built with therapy.
Life coaches fill that gap. Both in the past and now, with the big difference being that coaching used to be focus on profession personal empowerment. Which is awesome. From there we have been able to evolve coaching fields to a wide range of focuses such as mediation, spiritual, body wellness and nutrition, creativity, career, and business.
This is an amazing evolution for coaching, so understand that you are a part of it. Don’t worry too much about having it all figured out, do the work you need to and enjoy being a part of a global movement of people who deeply believe in connection and creating a culture of belonging.
Working with a life coach can help you find your calling and understand why the process is often frustrating and confusing.
Finding your calling has more to do with grit than passion.
I struggled for years trying to figure out what my calling was. I sought to understand what skills interests, and talents I could use to create a business. I wanted that business to be something that brought me great joy, and served others. I kept hitting wall after wall of obstacles, some real and some based on my level of self worth at the time.
Every time I hit a wall, two things would happen:
1. I would either get stuck and not know how to take a step and quit.
2. I would find something new that interested me, and I would suddenly be off in a new direction.
I have so many interests and I love learning, but at a point, I became so frustrated by the feeling of constantly starting over, and never gaining traction, that I knew I wanted to change the way I approached finding my special thing.
Every time I sat down to try to figure it out, I couldn’t.
I realized that it’s not something you can figure out by thinking. You can only figure it out by doing.
In the book Grit by Angela Duckworth, she explains the three stages of achievement.
Stage one: The Discovery phase.
It’s the stage in which you investigate a curiosity, learn more about it try it on and get to know it as a possibility. It’s also a very fragile stage in the passion investigation process because it’s easy for someone else to interject a damaging opinion or if you don’t have support, your budding interest can be very easily abandoned especially if things are challenging or hard. It’s easy to step off the path at this stage because something that seems newer, shinier, and better can capture your interest and off you go.
The problem with this, is that you never, ever get to the part where you build and experience meaningful growth. Much like a serial dater who goes from women to women, who can never make a commitment to get engaged because they’re addicted to the excitement of the ‘newness and possibility’ and are constantly battling the tension that arises with the feeling that something better might come along. You may be holding out for the perfect thing that doesn’t exist.
This was my problem. When things got hard, and I didn’t have the support or skills I needed to stay with things, I would quit and move on to something new, and struggled to rise to the next phase of achievement.
Stage two: The Development phase.
In this stage you are skill building with consistent, focused, deliberate practice, time investment, and building and stretching the boundaries of your skills. Most people want to skip this stage and rush right into the marriage.
You cant get to the third stage of achievement without investing in this development stage. Sadly this stage is where most people drop out.
Sometimes it’s genuinely not the right path, and it’s ok to keep investigating.
However, I noticed that when I would get to this stage, I would quit because I was mistaking challenge for disinterest, based on something I like to call the passion myth.
The Passion Myth will keep you stuck..
The passion myth
The belief that there is one perfect passion for you and when discovered, it will be effortless, make you happy every moment, and doing it won’t feel like work because you love it so much.
The passion myth makes us feel that if you are not completely in love with what you are doing all day everyday, that it’s not your thing.
The truth is, meaningful things take deliberate practice, constant commitment and work.
Whenever I was ready to claim and commit to a territory, someone would inevitably ask me, if I was passionate about it, or did I love it?
And because I wasn’t sure if I could genuinely answer that question, it made me doubt my commitment. If fireworks weren’t going off, I assumed that I wasn’t passionate about it. I was mistaking momentary confusion about my commitment with the feeling that comes from experiencing novelty. Human being are hard wired to seek novelty. Eventually, you will realize that new guy you’re dating has stinky feet sometimes, and throws his socks in the middle of the floor. You wouldn’t throw out a good and loving man for being imperfect, and you definitely don’t want to abandon a calling that could give you a lifetime of wonder and fulfillment because of the passion myth.
Rather that asking yourself if you are passionate about something, or if you are in love it, a better question to ask about passion is , “are you willing to stay with it, when things are hard.” Are you willing to commit to it, on days when it feels boring, challenging, or impossible.” those are better self determining questions. And they are better for pinpointing what your path is.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that your feeling in the moment is an indicator of the passion you feel for something. Passions come with a depth and range of emotions. The deeper you go, the wider range of thoughts and emotions you will experience.
Stage three: Deepening.
In the deepening stage, you are using your skills that you have built in stage two, to strengthen your voice, hone your craft, and you will experience flow.
Duckworth gives a wonderful metaphor about the difference between a job, career, and calling. Three men are asked what they do.
The first man says, “I’m a brick layer.” Clearly a job.
The second man says, “I’m building a church.” He has a career.
The third man says, “I’m building a house of God.” That man has a calling. He is locked into a bigger purpose, and though all three men are essentially performing the same task, they each have a different relationship with those tasks.
So part of making a commitment to your calling is identifying the larger purpose through doing the work, and creating a mindset shift about the parts of the work that are not as enjoyable.
One of the key things that I discovered by developing my calling as a coach, is that my calling wasn’t clear until I started doing the work of development. You can’t reap the rewards of a beautiful marriage without first making a commitment, and then deepening that commitment over time.
You probably already have an idea of what your calling is, but might need help with defining the details.
For example, when I was in search of my calling, I had a lot of different parts and pieces I struggled to sort through. I knew I loved style, self actualization and personal development, I also loved creativity and helping people. I knew that I thrived when I had time to be alone to think. I knew I loved working one on one with people and that creative, process oriented things is where I shine. I had all of these clues, but struggled to piece them together into something viable, that I wanted to commit to. That was before I understood different stages of achievement, and it was before I knew that I needed help recognizing my sustainable strengths. I learned that it would take support to get past the novelty seeking phase.
Your calling is lifelong and will continue to grow over decades, and will be filled with goals and achievements more epic than we can tackle in a coaching series. I also know that you have unlimited potential and I believe that with coaching that supports you to discover the scope of your territory, and develop and claim your calling, that you will tap into the deepest expression of your potential and share it and inspire others.
If you are ready to get the support you need to discover how your passions form your calling as a coach or a creative, then click the link that takes you to the questionnaire.
From there we will set up a time to chat and see if we are a good fit.
Coaching women to follow their dreams, and creating beauty is my calling. I can’t wait to learn about yours.
Click the link and let’s get started on your dream.
I’m going to share with you what my life coaching business looks like a year after my training with the Beautiful You coaching academy.
So many people have shared with me that after watching my video series in which I reviewed each module of my Beautiful You training, that they wanted to join Beautiful You to become a life coach. And I have to tell you that I am so excited and honored if my videos helped you decide to become a coach!
I loved my training and I want to share it in any way I can!
I was a life coach before I took the BYCA training, and I have to tell you that I was under trained, and struggling to figure everything out on my own and desperately trying to find focus, develop my offerings.
After I became certified, I was much more clear on my vision, though I still struggled to fine tune my voice, its a process.
But I kept going and developed Heart Centered Coach Community that was a month by month membership site, in which I created monthly capsules of content. It was really cool, but I grossly underestimated the bandwidth I had to keep it going, so after 5 months I had to push pause. I believe I tried to go from one to many too fast, without the proper support.
I decided to focus on building up my one on one coaching, creating a nice workflow and systematizing from contact to completion with my clients.
I am still working on this and I expect over the next year I am going to really master this.
Focusing on strengthening my voice, and building my one on one coaching was the right decision for sure.
And something really cool happened…
The work I did began to compound, people started to reach out through my peripheral marketing channels, connecting with me on Facebook, and asking questions, and I found a steady stream of clients.
Now when I say steady, I mean two or three a week. The amount of clients I have hasn’t gone up that much, but the quality and effectiveness of my coaching has. By a bunch. I am so much more confident as a coach and I charge more as a result. I know I am a good coach, I took the time to develop a relationship to my value so that when it came to to charge cash money I felt good about it.
My years as a freelance designer helped in this area, but I know that asking for money can be very painful at first for a lot of people. Building a relationship to your self worth is critical here. Here is what I recommend that you do if you are struggling to price your coaching services.
First, you are going to make what I call “A learned and earned talent and skills list.”
This’ll help you understand your marketable value at a whole new level.
Here is what you do:
Take out a sheet of paper.
Making a list of everything you know, every degree, every course, every life lesson, every skill you have built.
From there, unpack each one, one at a time by listing all the earned skills that went into the bigger skill.
So for example:
One of my skills is photography, that’s a great skill right?
Well, underneath that one skill, there are a huge assortment of supporting skills such as:
Some of the things I had to learn to become a life coach:
advanced listening skills
and so much more.
It’s so important to do this because when someone comes to you who is interested in your services, and you tell them your price, you need to understand that your value is not just the time you are investing, but all the skills you have built up to this very moment to become a coach. It’s epic. If you know in your heart that you still aren’t confident about charging what you are worth, you need to begin to develop a relationship with your worth. Take it on a date and talk to it. Say your prices aloud, then say them to a friend. Feel the feelings, but do that work because if you don’t believe you are worth what you charge, no one else will either.
The feeling of confidence comes after the action of confidence.
So you might just have to determine your prices and then feel the feelings that come up until you are comfortable.
My skills have improved so much since life coaching was a mere glimmer on my radar as a possible calling. I know this because my clients are seeing much more substantial results.
I also know this because I love my clients, they are the very best thing about becoming a coach. I actually really underestimated how much I would treasure them, and how much seeing them make their goals and grow would mean to me. It’s one of the most wonderful by products of being a life coach. Being able to genuinely enjoy showing up for them, I feel is a testament to having earned the skills. No other job that I have had has given me this feeling, because no other job has been attached to my purpose of helping people self actualize and dig into the deep well of their potential.
I hope that this gave you sense of what you can expect for your first year as a new life coach. You will mostly be developing your style, voice and systems and learning about your strengths as a coach.