coaching

Picking Your Life + Business Priorities

I wanted to quit my business.  

A few months after my daughter was born, I was struggling with the demands of nurturing a newborn and growing a coaching business.  I wanted to devote my heart, time, and energy into my passions: to develop a relationship with my daughter and to help my clients grow their confidence and their business.  

The problem was, I was trying to do the SAME amount of work on my business as I did BEFORE the baby while adding the motherhood learning curve of breastfeeding, sleep training, and bonding with my child on top of it.  No wonder I wanted to throw in the towel on the whole business thing. I had to do a reality check and redefine my priorities according the this new season of life I found myself in. Once I realized that during this short time, I wanted to GROW a foundation for my family first while maintaining my momentum for my business, that gave me the permission to create a business and life that worked for me.

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So I wanted to share with you a simple and powerful exercise to help you figure out your priorities for this season of life and business.  In a world where your roles, responsibilities, and demands are constantly changing, it’s helpful to set intentions in how you want to focus your precious time and energy.  Maybe you find yourself trying to balance a baby and a business like me, or maybe you’re feeling led to put your health first, or figure out how to become financially free.  Wherever you are, know that you don’t have to do it all, or do it all right now. Getting clear on your priorities, in terms of figuring out what you want to CHANGE to grow will help you feel more focused and less stressed.  

(btw -- if you’d like a full goal-setting guide with a similar exercise, I highly recommend using Power Sheets to help you evaluate how you’re doing!)   

1. Evaluate how you’re doing in each of the life categories on a scale from 1-10.  

(1 is “rock bottom, something has to change drastically and NOW!, 10 is I’m content and this is awesome!)  No need to overthink it, and your scale is personal to you, but this can help you determine how you’re *really* doing in each area.  

Health
Marriage/relationships
Work/Business
Family
Spiritual Growth
Finances
Friends/Community
Recreation/Hobbies

* Note: you can edit or add to these life categories as you see fit!  For example, you may have a day job AND a business, so you’ll want to separate those.  
 

2. Next, jot down what comes to mind for you in each of these areas and ideas of how you’d like to improve.  
The purpose of this is to capture how you’re doing in each area so you can get a better sense of your life as a whole.  

For example, under “health” could look like:
* I’d like to eat less sugar and move my body more.  
* Going to yoga on Fridays has been really enjoyable.  

Again, we’re just capturing details so it’s better just to be honest!  
 

3. Pick 3 areas of your life to focus on as your PRIORITIES!  Ask yourself: which 3 areas would I like to focus my energy on CHANGING?  

I like to use the “ABC” method and assign each category a letter according to priority.  

“A” priority means I want to focus my energy on CHANGING this area, by cultivating a new habit, learning new tools, letting go of things that don’t serve me, and growing!  

“B” priority means if I have time available, I can do something to change this

“C” priority means I can maintain this area and be okay!  Having “C” priorities recognizes that you have a finite amount of time, energy, and resources, and it’s OK not to do everything!  Plus, you probably have areas of your life that’s going well so it’s okay maintain what you’re doing.
 

4. Get clear on “How” you’ll work on your priorities.  

What are the first steps you want to take to get started on your goals?  
How will you keep yourself accountable to keep these priorities?  
What can you schedule into your calendar so you know WHEN you’ll do these things?  

Here’s where change starts to happen so it’s important to be clear on your intentions and make room in your schedule for it!  

Once you have clarity on what you’d like to focus on FOR THIS SEASON of your life and business (I like to do this exercise annually, and tweak it if necessary every 3 months), you’ll have the permission to NOT do it all.  Instead, you can focus on a few key areas that will make a BIG impact on your life.

With joy, 

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[Featured: Relevant Entrepreneur] Defining Your Core Values in Life + Business

[This post was originally published as a guest blog contributor for Relevant Entrepreneur .  Check out their site for resources to help you build a God-centered business.]

Have you ever felt lost in a sea of competitors?  Does the thought of making a million CEO decisions stress you out?  Are you wondering how you could create work/life balance, and create a personal brand that’s true to who God created you to be?  

When I started my business, I had a clear mission in mind -- to equip Christian women with the skills and tools they need to lead their companies well.    

I was on fire to pursue my calling, and loved every minute of it.  I created new resources and offerings, connected with like-minded ladies, and impacted people along the way.  It wasn’t until my family moved and I expanded my practice online that I started to compare myself to other coaches, get overwhelmed with decision fatigue, and began to doubt what I had to offer.  

This led to a business I no longer loved.  

So what happened?  In the hustle, I lost sight of honoring my core values.  Core values are the things that are unique, important, and true to you.  Core values are the way God specifically designed you.  Core values are characteristics of your beliefs and the motivations for your actions.  

The good news is when you identify your core values, you can align your actions to what’s most important to you, resulting in a fulfilled life and business.

This this article, I'll walk you through some soul-searching questions that will help you uncover YOUR unique core values. 

Head on over to the Relevant Entrepreneur to figure out how to create your guiding principles AND be connected with more amazing resources that will help you along your entrepreneurial journey.  

With joy, 

4 Empowering Money Mantras for Entrepreneurs

A couple of weeks ago, I asked my Facebook community,  “What’s one thing you WISHED more women in business talked openly about?”  

An overwhelming response was, “Money.”

That it’s okay to WANT to make more money.  That it’s okay to charge for your services.  That’s it’s okay to invest in getting support to help you lead the business you desire.  

Money can be a taboo topic, but as entrepreneurs, it’s super important to know your numbers and the financial health of your business.  I believe the more we talk about money (ex. mindset, tips, and best practices) the more comfortable we can be about developing healthy habits in our lives and businesses.  

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So this week, we’ll engage in a conversation around money as I share with you my favorite money mindset mantras to empower you to earn, invest, save, and give your money in a way that you feel comfortable with.  

1. Earning Money Mantra: The greatest service I provide my clients is in a paid capacity.

As entrepreneurs, we have the power to set our own rates and prices and earn as much or as little as we would like.  

When I first started out in this coaching business, I actually felt guilty for charging people to hire me.  “I’m so passionate about this, I’d do it for free!”  “This comes so easily to me, and I have to work HARD to earn money!”  These were some personal money stories that held me back from my earning potential in my business — as if work, enjoyment, and true service had to be mutually exclusive.  

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That’s when I realized that money is just an exchange — I provide an excellent service to serve my clients and in exchange they pay me for my guidance towards their desired result.  This allows me to be okay with earning money because it’s a vehicle to support my clients with my expertise and my family with additional income.  

Let me know below, does this mantra resonate with you?  What’s your take on earning money?   

2. Investing Money Mantra: The risk now is worth the return later.

You know the phrase, “You have to spend money to make money”?  This is true when you’re running a business because often times, we have to invest in education, equipment, and team members in order to keep things operating and help us get to the next season of business.  

Now I’m not an advocate for reckless spending, but I am a proponent of making wise choices to receive the support, structure, and systems you need so you can build a sustainable business EVEN IF it feels scary or outside of your comfort zone.  

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Sometimes what holds us back is waiting until we have things perfectly BEFORE we get help or delay investing in education until we have clients when the whole point of education, equipment, and team members are to help you make more money to work with more clients.  As long as you stay consistent and set things up properly, you will see a return on your investment.  

So whenever I *know* the next right step is to invest in the right coach/program, online tools, and team member, I remind myself: “The risk now is worth the return later.”  

How about you?  Does it feel scary or exciting for you to invest in what your business needs?  

3. Saving Money Mantra: The more savings I have, the more choices I have.

Your business profits are like your business savings accounts so they more money you have put away the more resources you have in case of emergency and the more options you have for your future growth.  

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Setting aside money for taxes, paying myself, and profits are money habits I’m cultivating so every dollar has a purpose.  The more savings I set aside, the more empowered I can be about the choices I make.  

4. Giving Money Mantra: Giving back my money blesses others AND keeps me grounded.

A common fear in business is the fear of success, or feeling like loads of money will change you and your character.  I believe the best way to kick this fear in the face is to be generous and give back a percentage of your business money at ALL income levels.  

The mantra, “Giving back my money blesses others AND keeps me grounded” motivates me to earn more money so I can give more away and ultimately see money as a tool and not an idol.  

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Money is a magnifier so what you do with little you can do with a lot so building a generosity habit helps you to be and stay heart-centered with your business.  

Money, money, money.  It’s an important facet of our businesses and as we evaluate how we think about it, how we interact with it, and how we feel about it, we can be more empowered to build habits to help us earn, invest, save, and give in our businesses.

If you’d like to dive deeper into making more money in the business you desire, then I encourage you to book a discovery call to see if working together would be the next right step.  

With joy,
 

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Win Over Your Clients with an Incredible Onboarding Process

You’ve connected with your DREAM client, and she decides to work with you.  YAY!  What an exciting feeling when someone knows, likes, and trusts you to hire you to do what you do best.  

The next steps are critical.  The onboarding process (the steps you take to formally start working with someone) is important to setting up a healthy, empowered, and productive professional relationship.  It’s the steps, systems, and processes you share with your client to let them know they’re in good hands.  

As the expert, you can lead your client through your process by being clear about what's needed and what's next to create an incredible client experience.  

So this week, we’ll be taking a look at how we’re communicating expectations to make sure they are serving our clients AND protecting the integrity of our work and boundaries, so it’s a win-win for everyone involved.  

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1. Clarify each person’s role and responsibility.

The agreement that you have with your client is a working RELATIONSHIP, and the best, mutually beneficial relationships are ones where both people know and understand what is expected and how they can support each other.  

That’s why it’s important to clarify your responsibilities as the service provider AND your client’s responsibilities in working with you.  

Here are some questions to consider: 

1. What conditions allow you to do your BEST work?  
2. What does your client need to know to set BOTH of you up for success? 

The answers to these questions will help you define a process for payment, communication, feedback, timelines, and to-dos. 

2. Set Expectations In Your Contract

Contracts and agreements are a legal way to communicate each person’s responsibility in a working relationship.  

Contracts can outline terms for payment and refunds, liability protection, policies and procedures, timelines, and deliverables.   

I know that legal things can be intimidating or confusing, but having a clear contract will get the working relationship off on the right foot to prevent legal action down the road.  

3. Create a Welcome Packet + Give Client Pre-Work

After the contract is reviewed and signed, and the deposit is paid, I send over a welcome packet to my client.  

The purpose of my welcome packet is to give my client resources that will help her get STARTED on her business goals and make the most out of our coaching partnership.

You can definitely get creative here, but my welcome packet is a branded PDF that includes: 

1. A welcome letter describing my role and what to expect (sensing a theme here?) 
2. Copy of our agreement with helpful links to my scheduler, and Basecamp for communication and feedback.   
3. Copy of a Business Review to help set the right goals we’ll work on achieving together 

Yes, I can my clients homework BEFORE our first session so they can reflect on what’s working and not working.  That way, we can dive right in to dreaming, planning, and execution portion during our work together.  

What do you need from your client BEFORE you start working together?  

4. Ask your client about their needs in an initial session.

During our first coaching session, I set aside extra time to go over “housekeeping” items and reiterate things like how we will communicate through Asana, filling out a pre-session questionnaire, and my typical office hours.  I also ask my client how they feel best supported so I can tailor my coaching to their needs.  

Even though my client has seen things written down, I like to have an open dialogue on what the dynamic of our relationship will be like.  Because of the personal relationship of my work and the fact that every client is different, this allows me to get to know my client’s deeper motivations, personality, and preferences to help make the experience unique to them.  

What are some ways you like to tailor your services to meet the needs of your clients?  

5. Continue to communicate throughout your working relationship.

You can continue to communicate and evolve as your working relationship progresses.  

If your client crossed a boundary, a friendly reminder may do the trick to get you back on track.  For example, one time I received a message from a client really late at night.  The following day, I reminded her of my regular office hours and my typical response time and she understood how to proceed.  

You can also ask for feedback during your work together.  For example, I like to check-in at the halfway mark to see what’s working, not working, and what can be better.  

At the end of the day, we’re here to lead AND serve our clients.  By being clear on our roles and responsibilities and communicating them frequently and openly, we create an experience that builds rapport and trust with our clients, and has the power to turn them into forever fans.

Let me know in the comments below, what's YOUR onboarding process like?  How do you like communicate roles and responsibilities with your clients?  

With Joy,  

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[Featured: Sass Magazine] 4 Things No One Tells You About Being a Girl Boss

Empowering women.  Telling the truth.  Collaborations.  

These are a few of my favorite things.  That's why it was super enlightening to guest blog for Sass Magazine -- a digital resource for the authentic, well-informed women professional.  I share the common themes that I see in my clients' (and my) journey into entrepreneurship being a lady and being a leader.  From gaining confidence to finding your work/life balance (is this even real?), I highlight the good and the challenges of things that No One Told You About Being a Girl Boss...until now.  

Read the "4 Things No One Tells You About Being a Girl Boss" over on Sass Magazine

 

With joy, 

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