Being an entrepreneur isn't just a job. It is a way of life. And I can tell you from personal experience, it impacts every area of life.
If you’re making decisions on your business, it can impact your mood, which impacts your relationships, which impact your health. If one area is going great, but another isn’t, it can all have a domino effect.
So life coaching can be invaluable for entrepreneurs. Today I’m going to tell you three powerful reasons why, if you’re running your own business, you definitely want to have a good life coach.
First, I want to tell you the story of my first executive coaching client – the first time I coached an entrepreneur.
In fact, it was my husband.
(Now, this is rare. Most people in relationships don’t coach each other, but Stephen and I have found a groove.) It all started one sunny afternoon in Los Angeles – the day Stephen got fired.
This was bad news. Our daughter was six months old. We relied on Stephen’s income. I had transitioned from my career as a soap opera star to live out another of my dreams as a life coach. But I was newly certified, which meant I wasn’t making money yet, and we were broke. Did I mention we had a six-month-old?
“What are we gonna do?” he kept saying. “How are we going to make money?”
My heart broke for him. I felt panicky too, but the situation wouldn’t allow both of us to panic. I took a deep breath. I was a newly minted life coach—I could handle this.
“It’s going to be okay,” I said. “We’ll figure something out.”
I could almost hear his eye roll, but I persisted.
“Maybe you can go back to writing scripts. I’ll get a job. We’ll be fine, I promise.”
“I’m screwed,” he said, holding his head in his hands, the universal gesture of Oh, shit. “This business is impossible. How do you make any money in the entertainment industry, let alone a million dollars?”
For as long as I’ve known him, Stephen has held this deep-seated belief that to survive, he had to make a million dollars. Maybe it was his family history. Maybe it was the artist in him, afraid he would never work again. Whatever the cause, it was the benchmark he'd set for himself, and it was nonnegotiable.
“It’s impossible to make a million dollars in this business,” he repeated.
“Well, someone’s done it,” I said, “so it can’t be impossible.”
“They must be lucky.” He let out a heavy sigh. “There’s just no way.”
We’d had similar conversations before. But this time was different. This time, one little question changed everything.
“Well, what if it wasn’t?” I said. “What if it was easy?”
At first, he didn’t respond. He just looked at me like I was an alien.
“What?” he said. “It’s not. How could you even ask that? You know it’s not even close to easy.”
“But what if it was? What would you do?”
Then he did something unexpected: he started to laugh. I don’t know if it was out of sheer overwhelm, or the ridiculousness of the question, or what. But in that moment, the car felt a little less hot, and the panic eased up, just a little.
And in that tiny break from the pressure and heat, I could almost see Stephen’s mind open up, just enough to let in this radical new possibility. He actually tried it on for size instead of dismissing it.
After a minute, the answer came.
“If it was easy, I’d start my own company,” he said, sitting up straighter.
My eyebrows shot up. This was different than anything we’d ever talked about. In light of that answer, the whole energy in the car changed. His body language returned to that of confident man I knew. In his voice there was a sense of possibility.
And that I could work with.
“What would that look like?” I said. “How is that done?”
“Well, I’d call up Mike and see if he wants in,” he said. “Then I’d, I don’t know. Form an LLC. Start pitching.”
In that strange, in-between place of lightness and seriousness, Stephen and I talked through the logistics. It was all hypothetical, but it was also pragmatic—down to the last detail. If he was going to start a company, what steps would he take? What did he already have going for him? What could he do today to get started?
I kept the questions coming, and with them came more answers. He already had so much of them in his mind, waiting to be set free.
Stephen moves pretty fast. The next day, he called up a partner. Within weeks, he’d started a TV production company. Within a year, he hit his mark: he made one million dollars.
See why entrepreneurs need a coach?
1. Entrepreneurs need a sounding board – someone to affirm their creativity and help them follow the energy.
People running their own business are often isolated – yes, even as they’re answering emails, answering the phone, darting from one networking event to another. They don’t always have someone to talk to. Maybe you’re working by yourself, or if you have people working for you, they’re looking to you for answers. You can’t go to them and tell them you have no idea what to do. You’re in charge, you’re giving direction.
So it really helps to have someone on your side who’s rooting for you, cheering you on, who can be a sounding board to your ideas and creativity, someone to reflect back what they hear you say. That’s a big part of what a coach does. Life coaches listen for excitement. Where is the energy? Where is the core value? Where is it falling flat? How can you clear out the clutter and see what’s really going on?
What is that core thing that really lights you up? What’s that vision that’s in alignment with your core truth? That thing you want most, that you know with all your talents and strengths and values and heart – what is that? That’s what’s going to keep you on track. Seeing that vision in all its sparkling clarity, that’s what’s going to help you make tough decisions, take calculated risks, problem-solve efficiently and creatively, and really make that vision your reality.
Entrepreneurs are constantly making decisions, constantly having to reinvent, pivot, change, and figure out tough problems. All those decisions and problems and challenges can start to turn into what I call “clutter” – stuff that gets in the way, causes stress, and distracts you from what really matters. And that clutter can turn into big barriers between you and your business goals. So that’s why you need to clear all that out, get straight to the point – and that’s exactly what a life coach will help you do.
That beautiful vision of yours – that will tell you what to do. Keeping that in the forefront of your mind (and your to-do list) will keep you on track and keep you from getting bogged down in all that clutter.
When you’re stressed out, your kids are sick, you haven’t been to the gym all week – all those things can contribute to “spiraling.” It’s one thing after another. A life coach will help you tap into that core vision so you can stay on track, no matter what else is going on in your life.
Have I said this already, that entrepreneurs are really on their own? You don’t have a boss, a time card, anyone standing over your shoulder telling you what to do next and by when. You have to be all those things for yourself.
Holding yourself accountable is freaking hard. No matter how disciplined or motivated or awesome you are, nobody can do it all the time. Especially when you’re tired, or stressed, or overwhelmed – that “self-accountability” goes out the window. And while it’s important and good to take breaks when you need them, and to let yourself off the hook from time to time, we all need accountability.
It is so helpful to have someone checking in on you, someone who believes in your ability, helping you stay on track and not letting you get away with taking the easy way out.
The thing that excites me the most about coaching is seeing what people are capable of. It’s mind-blowing! And when you have someone who’s helping you stay in touch with that amazing power of yours, helping you believe in yourself when you might feel doubt – that’s powerful.
Those are the three key things that make a life coach so very important for entrepreneurs. So I encourage you try it today. Contact me and we can get started! Or, if you want to try a quick exercise first, head over to my website and take my free quiz, which will show you what areas of life are going well and which ones need work. This is a really powerful exercise that never fails to surprise people, giving them a different perspective on their life, and showing them what they might need to do to fix problems (yes, even ones they’ve tried everything for).
When one thing in life falls apart, you will pull your energy, time, and focus away from the things that matter. So we want to keep all areas in life in balance.
I’d love to work with you to help you tap into your core, stay accountable, and create a strategic blueprint that will help you create the business of your dreams. Email me here to set up your next session!
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