#73: How To Take Action (Even When You’re Scared)

You probably know that in order to succeed in building a health coaching business you have to “put ourselves out there.” But it’s not always easy! In this episode Michelle talks about how to make it happen, particularly if you’re experiencing some inner resistance.

Register for Michelle’s free 5-Day Closing the Deal Challenge at http://HealthCoachPower.com/challenge

NY Times article – Why you procrastinate has nothing to do with self control

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Hey health coaches! I think that you know and I know and everybody knows that in order to succeed in building our businesses we have to, you know, put ourselves out there and I put that in like, air quotes cause everybody uses that term. I need to put myself out there more. I just need to get myself out there. Okay, what does that even mean? First of all, and we all know it’s not always easy is it? Sometimes it’s really, really hard. So how do you make it happen? Especially if you’re experiencing some, shall we call it inner resistance. When I was a student at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and this is going back over 10 years, I was extremely resistant to doing anything in terms of setting up my business. I know you probably wouldn’t have expected me to say that, but it’s so true. I really didn’t think I would ever have my own business.

I didn’t even know why I was in school. I just wanted to learn all about nutrition and health. But I had no plans to actually set up shop and start seeing clients and it scared the living’ Dickens out of me. So I know all about not putting yourself out there cause I was doing a whole lot of that back then. No, today I want to talk about taking that plunge. Whether it’s giving your very first workshop. Oh that’s so scary, or launching a new program, or maybe it’s just you printing out a flyer and walking into the local yoga studio and tacking it on a bulletin board. Hey even that can be scary. So I’m going to give you five ways to finally get it done before we get there, I have two things.

So first, and this one’s really important, my five day close. The deal challenge starts very, very soon. So I hope you’ve already registered. It’s a completely free event and over the course of our five days together, I’m going to be teaching you how to sign clients without any of the pushy, salesy kind of tactics. So if you’ve been avoiding marketing yourself, avoiding putting yourself out there, it sometimes is because you are secretly terrified of having to sell yourself. Like if you put yourself out there, somebody might want to be your client and then you’re going to have to, oh my God, ask them for money, right? So if that’s you, you absolutely must join us. Go to healthcoachpower.com/challenge and get yourself signed up for a free. Again, that is healthcoachpower.com/challenge okay, I hope to see you there. I’m getting very excited for that event.

I also want to give an enormous sort of woo hoo shout out to Kristen. Hi Kristen, who wrote this iTunes review along with her five star rating. She said, Michelle got me out of my head. I am the type who overthinks over plans, wants to know everything and every contingency. Raise your hand if you’re like Kristen, right? I realize now that this is fear of failure and like that kid who stands on the edge of the diving board staring down forever with wobbly knees but can’t take the jump. I won’t say Michelle pushed me off the board. She’s far more persuasive than that. Her invaluable tips and real talk helped me see that even a belly flop will be success to some degree and that to be good I simply have to get moving. I announced my pre-launch. I’m listing my pricing higher than I would have without her advice and signed my first clients this week.

I have a back to school special plans with my First Eight Week Group coaching going live here shortly. I feel like the kid saying I’m doing it, I’m doing it, but without Michelle I would still be trapped in my head spinning with ideas and no actual action. Thanks Michelle. For your generosity, your positivity and sharing such usable, actionable information. I’m taking the plunge because of you. Geronimo!

Holy way to get it done. Kristen, your review was just so in line with what we’re talking about today, so absolutely had to share it and I’m so pleased that you’ve decided to dive in or belly flop in whatever. It doesn’t matter. It just means you’re in motion. So congratulations and please send your mailing address to support@healthcoachpower.com and just reference this episode because we have a little thank you gift to send your way.

I so appreciate all of you guys. Every time a listener writes a review on iTunes, especially when it’s to say that they took this information that I give on the show every week and put it into action. Like so good, so good. Let’s talk more about that because Kristen is definitely not alone in her. Like I’m going to stand on the edge of the diving board, but I’m not going to jump in feelings and facts.

Lori, if you’re out there, say hello. Lori recently posted this in our group. She said I graduated from IIN in May of 2018 and I’m having trouble putting myself out there. I’m working on it with toastmasters. And you’ve tried helping already within the health coach power community. I guess Lori has posted into the Facebook group in the past about this, but she’s asking now what helps a person take action. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Okay. Well Lori, sounds to me like a fear of public speaking might be one reason that you’re not an action, in which case. Yeah, totally. I’ve heard that toastmasters can really help with that. I’ve never done it myself, but just for anybody listening who doesn’t know about toastmasters, I don’t know a lot about it, but this is what I’ve heard. It’s a group, it’s all across the country. I don’t know, maybe around the world. And there’s local meetings that get together in your area where everybody practices public speaking and sort of a safe space. So if you’re like trembling at the idea of getting up in front of a crowd, this is a good place to go and practice until you get comfortable with it. But what I want to say is for Lori and for everybody, putting yourself out there does not have to include public speaking.

Yeah, it might. It’s one way to have your voice heard, but it’s certainly not the only way. And I really didn’t do a lot of public speaking when I got started. I was way too scared to be doing that. So today just want to focus on more of a general problem of not taking action. Any action because of our fears, because of our doubts or lack of motivation or simply our inertia, right? So number one, this I think is really important and it kind of like brings me back to teaching yoga. I know lots of listeners of this podcast probably do yoga because health coaches love Yoga, don’t we? But you know the idea that when you’re in a yoga class and you’re doing the practice and you’re getting into a pose, you know you have to not be attached to the outcome. It can’t be like, oh yeah, totally hit the arm balance today. I’m amazing.

Or Oh no, I totally couldn’t do that arm balance today. I suck. You know, you have to be able to B, just part of the process. It’s all part of the process. So I say if you have to get in motion, you have to separate yourself from the outcome because it’s the outcome that you’re really afraid of. Right? Like, maybe you’re going to procrastinate, setting up that worksheet, that workshop rather because, oh my God, what if nobody signs up? Nobody would’ve, nobody shows up and I’m just in a room by myself. Ah, and that fear gets in the way of the outcome. So you never set a workshop up or maybe it’s, yeah, somebody interested in working with you, but oh my God, what if I can’t help them? What if they don’t think I’m a good coach? What if, what if? What if?

And then you never actually take steps to start working with that client. So you get no experience or your business goes nowhere. A big fat nowhere. So this idea of procrastination is really interesting. And actually somebody in my community recently told me that the New York Times has an interesting article. I think they titled It, why you procrastinate and has nothing to do with self control. They talk about how procrastination is an emotion regulation problem, not a time management problem. And you probably already knew that because you can find time to do the things you want to do during the day. But how often do I talk to someone and they’re like, oh yeah, Michelle, I just haven’t had time to set up my mailing list. I’m like, right, right. Cause you’re terrified. You’re attached to the outcome. What if I send something to a mailing list and everybody hates it?

Nobody wants to be on my mailing list. Everybody unsubscribes. Oh no. So we have to take action by separating ourselves and not becoming attached to the what if, to the outcome, because I’m going to tell you right now, you have no idea what the outcome is going to be, and nine times out of 10 in my experience, it’s better than you ever could have imagined, okay? So do it without attachment to the outcome. Write that down. So important, and if you want to link, by the way to that New York Times article, I’m going to paste it into the comments right now, but we’ll also put it into the show notes if you’re watching later on another platform. Okay? The second way to get things done, take action. Even when you’re scared, you need to 100% embrace the fact that you’re going to do it imperfectly every darn time.

I mean, like today I just set up my little video set up here. I got my headset on so I can record this and I look at myself in the video and I’m like, I think I was wearing this tank top last week or something very close to it. And I was like, oh, that’s kind of weird. You know? And I know that’s like a small thing. I wouldn’t even call it a mistake, but there’s always going to be little things where you’re like, oh, I didn’t do that quite right or I messed up. Or what are people going to think blab, blah, blah. Just know that that’s going to happen. Like you can bet on it, you’re going to do it imperfectly. So if you know that going into it, you’re like, all right, I’m going to hold this workshop and I’m totally going to mess something up.

Like, I already know that’s going to happen. And you kind of set your expectations there. I think that makes it so much easier to move forward. Right? You’re human. We all are. We all make mistakes. Other times I’ve been doing this podcast and I’m like, my Internet will cut out or I’ll realize I don’t have my headset plugged in properly. I mean, every time you’re always going to be imperfect. So just plan on it and that’s going to take away a whole lot of the fear. None of us are perfect. Even when I’ve worked with health coaches who’ve been in this field longer than I had been. Health coaches who have bigger, better whatever going on in their business and they feel a little intimidated by them behind the scenes. Oh yeah. No one knows what we’re doing. We really don’t. Everybody’s just kind of like by the skin of their teeth every time because you have to. We’re entrepreneurs, we’re always figuring new stuff out as we go along. So do not hesitate to embrace imperfection.

Okay. Number three is I think kind of my favorite. I think this is really missing for a lot of health coaches that I talk to. So let me describe it. Let’s say, you know, you’re a mom, you’ve got a couple of kids are getting older now and you’re thinking, oh it’d be nice to make some extra income from health coaching. And I really like talking to people about health and nutrition and that’s great, but your business is kind of hasn’t gone anywhere and you’re like, ah, let’s put that scenario a. Okay. Scenario B. Um, your child has just been diagnosed with some very… God forbid, some very severe, um, issue and you have to pay a medical bill that goes way above and beyond anything that you ever expecting to pay this year.

Like you need thousands and thousands of dollars in order for your child to have this certain surgery that they need. So you need to make money. Now in which scenario is your business more likely to succeed? I’m going to tell you it is the second one. When you have big motivation, you have to make some money. You have to, whatever it is, fill in the blanks. That is when you end up taking action cause you have to make it happen. You have to see the money in your bank account. And I’m actually not making that story up. I actually know a coach, I’m not a health coach, but I’m another coach and he had some awful thing happen with his second son. They were like flown to this hospital and the kid had to have like open heart surgery and the whole thing. And he was like, okay, well I need to pay this hospital bill.

Right? It’s like there’s never been greater motivation to become extremely efficient and extremely focused on taking action and earning the money you need to make. Same thing happened to me. No, no, not with my kids again, God forbid. But, uh, when I just started out and I business, it wasn’t as dramatic, but it felt dramatic at the time. Cause what happened was I’ve always worked or I used to work in advertising, so I had this nice cushy job. I had like my window office and everything and I unexpectedly got laid off back in 2008, 2009, you know, when the market crashed. So what happened was I was making this nice salary and then all of a sudden, boom, it was gone. And that was when I was halfway through my training to become a health coach. Told you I was really not into it. I was really like, never going to start a business.

Not me, not for me. I’m not the entrepreneurial type at all. Lost my job, woke up Monday morning with a totally different sense of myself. I was like, okay, I got to make this work. I have got to get out there and take action. So what I’m trying to say is if you’re not taking action, chances are you don’t have a big enough reason. You don’t have big enough motivation. And so you need to figure out what that motivation is. Like why does it matter if you ever get your business going, who cares? What purpose does it serve? And if that’s a strong enough motivating factor, you will move your butt. My next idea for you is to it together, right? Like we’ve all heard this about like accountability partners. It doesn’t have to be an accountability partner though. Um, sometimes those can backfire. So the point is though that if you are accountable to someone or something, a group, an individual, you are much more likely to take that action.

So again, earlier in my career I had a lot of doubts about what I should be doing. I wasn’t really sure. And one thing that helped me get into action was partnering up with other coaches now as like a long-term business strategy. That wasn’t like the best thing I ever did, but it definitely put me in motion. As soon as you have somebody that you’re working with and you’re like, okay, I’m going to do A, you’re going to do B, we’re going to come back together next week and make the next decision. That’s accountability, right? So I highly encourage you to find some organization, group, person, whatever, that you can do the work together with so that you are accountable to someone. Um, and if you don’t want to go the route where you’re working with a partner, you could actually do what I do now and hire somebody or recruit a friend to act as your project manager.

Cause I was thinking about this. I’m like, hmm, you know I really do a lot of work on my own these days, but in terms of accountability, nothing beats my project manager. Hello Stephanie. If you’re listening, Stephanie is the bomb and just her being like, okay Michelle, this is the project that you’ve planned for yourself. When are you going to do it or what part of that are you going to do this week? And like making me map it out and the next week we have to say, okay, did this get done? Did this get not get done? Oh my God, I’m like a girl who has to check off all the check boxes on my to do list. So she helps me create that list, create my own calendar and it makes an enormous difference and what I’m able to accomplish every single week and finally do it scared.

That was probably the best advice that I got when I was a student. You know what? What is it? Feel the fear and do it anyway. Like I think in our minds we’re like, oh, I don’t know. Like, I’m not really sure we give ourselves a thousand reasons why we can’t do something and then we don’t do it. But the truth is you can feel all of those feelings and process those feelings and talk about those feelings and be scared and yet still do it. Oh yes you can. And it’s almost like doing it imperfectly. If you just kind of embrace like I’m going to be nervous. Yup, I am going to sweat and stammer and freak out a little bit inside, but I am still going to get up and deliver this workshop. Like okay, that’s, that’s how it’s done. And honestly that is how it’s done.

You’re never going to not be scared until you’ve done it once, twice, three times, 10 times, whatever it is. So you can plan on doing things scared. I still get a little bit like butterflies in my stomach before I’m doing a big webinar or any like even a broadcast like this, you know, to suddenly know that you’re going to be on camera, you know, were like, oh my gosh, do I have Kale in my teeth? Sometimes I do. Okay. It happens. So those were my five pieces of advice for you. Do it without attachment to the outcome. Do it in perfectly. Do it for a big motivating reason. Do it together and do it scared. I have some other questions to answer though. So let’s keep moving every week you guys asked great questions inside of the Facebook group and I’m always committed to answering them for you.

So let’s see, we have one here from Lydia. Okay. Lydia says, I would like to know your experiences with building your health coaching business on your own from scratch versus hiring a business mentor to either guide you in the process or take over some of the parts of your business, like Admin, marketing, et cetera.

All right, Lydia, I’ll tell you my experience for what it’s worth. I hired nobody when I started my business. Now in my defense, there weren’t that many people to hire back then. Really? Like now you’ve got like so many resources. There’s like, I didn’t even know what a virtual assistant was back then. I don’t even know if they existed. I never would have even thought about it. So anyway, I didn’t have so many options, but you know, there were a couple of business coaches that I’d seen. I really didn’t jive with them and I was just like, ah, not hiring this person, not going to do this course.

And so there I was on my own and it is possible to build a business that way and it is slow and it is slow and it is slow and it is sometimes painfully slow and you end up going in circles a lot and getting kind of stuck in your own head. So my experience was that it was possible for me to build a business that way because I very luckily had financial support. I wasn’t like yeah, under any pressure to make a certain amount of money in those early years. I know that’s not always the case for health coaches, which is why I think so many coaches quit before they even really get going cause they’re like, hey, I can’t hang out for like three, four or five years before I start making a decent profit. So I would say it can work. Just be prepared to go the slow route.

Um, you’re talking about two things here as well. You’re talking about hiring a business mentor, like some sort of coach or doing some sort of, you know, mentorship to guide you. And then you’re also talking about hiring people to take over parts of your business, like a virtual assistant or like a whatever, a project manager or somebody you actually hire and they do work for you. They don’t just kind of help you figure out how to do the work. Um, so you have two different paths that you can go down in terms of getting support. And I think the trickiest part is kind of figuring out what you need and when do you need it. Because the first time I hired a virtual assistant, it was sort of a waste of money because I was like, oh cool, I haven’t assistant, what can I have her do?

I don’t know, cause my business really isn’t organized and it’s all crazy and it’s all in my head and I could never explain it to anybody and it doesn’t really make sense when I try. So ugh. And I didn’t really know how to have her help me. Now I have a lot of systems in place in my business and it’s very easy for me to tell my assistant like, okay, here, boom, this is what I need you to do and this is what I needed done by. So it’s a little give and take as to what comes first, what comes second. But I do think most coaches coming out of school really need help learning how to market themselves. So not knowing anything about your situation. I, if I were you, that’s where I’d put my dollars first. Cause in the beginning of course you don’t have a lot of extra money to invest in your business.

So I wouldn’t hire, uh, the assistant, I wouldn’t get a Web Designer to, you know, start giving thousands and thousands of dollars to do your web design. I really hire somebody who’s going to help you figure out what exactly is going on in your business. How do you make money and how are you going to do it consistently? And then after there, it’s all butter. So Good Luck Lydia. And let us know how it goes. Oh, Lydia says. Very helpful. Thank you. I can’t go slow either. I quit my nine to five job. Okay. All right. Then maybe the slow road is not for you, Lydia, and you also said that you hadn’t heard about a virtual assistant yet. Oh yeah. Sometimes you’ll hear people just refer to a virtual assistant as a VA and shout out to Kelly. My VA handles my podcast for me, so she’ll be the one who kind of edits this and puts the transcript on my website.

You know, she has like a whole checklist of things that she does every time one of these episodes comes out so your VA can be anywhere in the world. That’s why they’re virtual and it’s not terribly expensive to hire somebody if you know what tasks to give them and it actually makes sense for you to do so, so frees you up to generate more income. Like if you can hire somebody for let’s say $20 an hour and during that time that they’re doing tasks that you would have been doing, you can make hundred dollars an hour. Then that is a great setup. Anyway, thanks for being here. Lydia.

Here’s another question that came from Alana. Alana said, what online sales management software or tool do you all use for selling and taking payment for your programs, eBooks, et Cetera? I have a Squarespace website and I’m creating a hormonal reset program. I want to sell directly on there.

Okay. So it really depends on what you’re selling. For example, my core is healthy profit university. It’s like a pretty big, all like comprehensive course. We have videos, we have a Facebook group, you know, we have live calls, so there’s a lot of moving parts and so for that I have a dedicated member site. I use Thinkific, you know, there’s teachable, there’s all different member core sites like that and that is the same site that accepts payment and it’s where, you know, my members log in to get access to the course. Um, and so that makes sense if you’re running some sort of big program.

So, I’m not sure, Alana, what your hormonal reset program includes, but like let’s say it’s just a pdf, like an eBook kind of thing and you just want to be able to have somebody give you whatever it is, $20 and you’re going to deliver a pdf into their inbox. There are a lot of different tools for that and um, you have to watch out cause some of them take a cut of everything that you sell in addition to the cut that PayPal or stripe is going to take on the payment processor end. So, you know, there’s things like Gumroad. Um, I’m trying to think of another one right now. It’s not coming to my mind, but the one that I’ve always liked for that kind of purpose for just like e-commerce selling a product, so to speak, a virtual product on your site is called DPD and I believe the website is getdpd.com.

Um, and it’s pretty inexpensive. There’s like a monthly fee. It’s not that much and it’s not that complicated, which I also love. It’s really pretty bare bones so it’s not like overwhelming to set up. And so that would be good if you are selling sort of a downloadable products, an audio file, a video file, a pdf, something of that nature and something in the middle. Like if it’s like a program where let’s say every week for four weeks there’s going to be a video released. Um, something like that. You could potentially do this on Practice Better. Practice Better has like again, total capability of accepting payments, allowing your members to log in somewhere to access whatever they’re buying. And um, I would suggest that for something that’s sort of in the middle, not a huge all-inclusive course, not just silly little eBook but something in between that’d probably be perfect for practice better. And I’m sorry, did I say silly little eBook? I’m sure your eBook is not silly at all. I’m sure it’s wonderful. I just meant, uh, a more simple transaction would be a pdf. So I hope that’s helpful. What other questions do you guys have for me today?

I have one here from Chloe and Chloe says, my biggest hurdle when coaching is when people have over-consuming jobs, jobs they can’t leave for one reason or another. The job is often the source of major and a time hog. Yeah, no kidding. Right. How do you coach through this?

Chloe, I have to tell you, so many of my clients end up quitting their jobs or like cutting back their hours that I started to think, oh my God, am I like a career coach? No, I’m definitely not a career coach. But I think once you give someone space to talk about what’s going on in their lives and sort of verbalize what’s happening and what’s taking up all their time and what’s causing their stress, it’s a pretty short walk for them to go from, Oh my God, my job is killing me too.

Why don’t I look for something else? And I’ve had people, you know, change jobs within the same field, cut back their hours at their current job or like completely leave a job and go do something different. And I find that very, very rewarding because that’s kind of what happened to me. Right? I decided I wasn’t going to go back to advertising when I got laid off. So instead of looking for that other ad job, I jumped into health coaching and it was like a major shift in my career and that kind of thing just really excites me. So I think it’s just part of health coaching. Uh, your job, that’s like one of your primary foods. You spend a lot of time at your job and so it’s wonderful to give your client time and space to talk about what’s going on in their career cause that’s really part of what’s going to either make or break your health.

So I’m glad that you are approaching this topic or thinking about this topic because it really, it is a big one and I think a really important one to consider when it comes to our clients. All right you guys, that is all for today. Keep asking great questions and I’ll be back very soon to answer them. However, we will not have a show next week because next week I will actually be in the middle of our five day closing the deal challenge. And we’re going to have live broadcasts every day for those five days answering your questions, guiding you through the daily challenges, but it’s all going to happen inside the Facebook group. None of this is going to be published to the podcast or YouTube or anywhere else. So if you want in, make sure that you’re inside our Facebook group and that you’re signed up to get the daily challenge emails healthcoachpower.com/challenge and I will see you there. I can’t wait. Bye bye everybody.