The Power of a Generosity Based Business

Dear Shi, 

I’ve been feeling so frustrated in my health coaching business.  I constantly give, give, give value but no one buys!  From doing free consultations, to helping out friends and family with advice and recipes, and volunteering my time at the gym, I feel running around in circles doing all the things without actually growing my business.  I feel like giving up because I’m pretty close to burning out.  I really want to lead and serve but don’t want to feel taken advantage of.  What can I do? 


Dear Olivia, 

Thank you for reaching out for help because the LAST THING I want for you is to give up from serving people and being a generally kind person.  The tension of being a great leader is actually taking care of your needs, filling up your cup, so that you’re able to pour into others.  When you’re empty, take some time to replenish so you can continue to pour into others. 

But let’s get to the heart of the matter. 

In Dale Patridge’s book, People Over Profit, he emphasizes the mentality that we’re in business to SERVE people.  We can make an INCOME if we focus on making an IMPACT.  Business is built of relationships and giving (without expectations of receiving), ESPECIALLY if we’re in the start up phase.  

So let’s talk about creative ways to GIVE as a service based business.

1. Creating Content

Content like blog posts, social media posts, and marketing materials is a way to educate your prospects on your products and services.  By making it informational, it’s a great way to be generous with your knowledge and expertise. 

2. Samples of Work

This could be samples of your work, like the free health consultations.  People can experience who you are and what you do. 

3. Giveaways

These are a fun way to give samples of your work and generate buzz and excitement around your brand. 

While it’s important to be generous, it’s also important to have boundaries to avoid burning out. 

Boundaries are simply what you define as “what’s okay, and what’s not okay.”

Here are some tips to consider: 

  • Direct people who want to “pick your brain” to relevant blog posts or other method of experiencing your work. 
  • Being strategic of your free stuff  by making sure it’s for your ideal client.  You can also repurpose your content so you don’t have to constantly reinvent the wheel.  
  • Open to receive and noticing what’s coming to you and your needs.  By creating awareness around what you’re receiving, you can create a mindset of abundance!   
  • Say YES to the BEST thing for your business, and NO, BUT….for things that are less than best 
    • For example, if some comes to you but can’t afford your services, you can say: “I may not be the best coach for you, but I’ll refer you to someone who would be a better fit.”  
  • Take time to fill up your cup!  You’ll be more inspired, joyful, and not resentful or burned out.   

Your action step: 

Define your boundaries.  What’s okay and what’s not okay in terms of who, where, and what you’d like to be generous with.  Tell me in the comments below what you’d like to give and how you’d like to avoid burn out!  

If you found this letter helpful, please share it with your friends.  If you’d like more insight into turning your ideas into action so you can create a successful business and intentional life, then subscribe to the “Letters For Leaders” and receive your free “Vision Into Action” workbook.  

With Joy,