Time to get grounded, centred and energised?

September. Already! As an ex-teacher, this time of year still has a special ‘new term, new start’ vibe about it for me…. combined with a mysterious desire to sharpen pencils and buy brand new stationery! (Or is that just me?)

For many of us it’s the time when the real world starts creeping back into our lives as we return from our summer holidays refreshed and ready to roll up our sleeves and get stuck into business again.

It takes more than sharp pencils and new stationery!

But as summer starts to melt into autumn, it can be tough to make the transition from a more relaxed schedule to focusing on creating new opportunities for our beloved businesses.It’s not unusual to find ourselves raring to go without knowing exactly WHERE it is we should be going!

Nope…. getting back into a regular routine is no easy feat and maybe you’re feeling it too! Maybe you’re thinking that it’s going to take something more than sharp pencils and a few new planners to kick-start your productivity, because the only thing you seem to have successfully kick-started is a whole lot of OVERWHELM.

Time to get grounded

In this morning’s yoga class my teacher was talking about this very thing… well, not getting back to business exactly but transitioning from summer to autumn.  As I lay there on my mat trying to stop my brain from racing and thinking about all the things I want to accomplish, she explained that each new season comes with an opportunity to see things from another perspective and as autumn approaches, it’s time to get grounded and re-connected before moving forward again.

Grounding….reconnecting with your centre…. balance, clarity, energy and empowerment…. honestly, I felt a wave of relief just listening to these words! I mean who wouldn’t want to exchange their overwhelm for a bit of that!

Grounded… centred… energised

As tempting as it is to rush off in headless chicken mode this September, it’s important to remember that ‘doing’ isn’t what makes us productive…. it’s doing the RIGHT things. And to do that we need to first reconnect with the big picture because THAT’S where we find clarity, focus and direction.

The quickest, most effective way I know of helping my clients find these three powerful ingredients is with my visual coaching tool: the Magic Map.

The principle is very simple. It uses a series of questions designed to get you thinking about the key bits of your business. It then uses your responses to create your Magic Map – a visual snapshot of your ‘big picture’.

Together we then explore your Magic Map and use the clarity it provides to design the way ahead so you can get on and DO what you know you’re here to do. It’s the perfect antidote to ‘that September feeling’!

So if you find yourself ‘faffing around’ sharpening pencils, check out details of my Magic Map process and bring an invigorating shot of inspiration, focus and energy back into your business.

How to Bridge the Knowing-Doing Gap

It’s one thing to KNOW something but actually DOING something about what we know….well, that’s often a completely different story!

In fact many of us spend a L-O-N-G time hanging around in the ‘Knowing-Doing Gap’ ….straddling the tension between excitement and fear…. keenly aware of a powerful internal force at the same time as doing absolutely NOTHING to make it a reality! (You too?)

I’ve spent large portions of my life pussy-footing my way around things that I KNEW would be best for my life. And I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in this.

So….if we KNOW what we should be doing, and want to be doing, why aren’t we DOING it? Well, that’s a very good question.

It’s a challenge!

It sounds simple but totally isn’t! If it was we’d just get on and DO it for heaven’s sake, so there’s something going on that stops us.

It was a challenge I faced when presented with a decision to make the move out the business I ran with my partner. Do I go for my dream of setting up a business of my own or continue faffing around in that ‘Knowing-Doing Gap’ indefinitely?

It wasn’t a simple decision by any means but I knew deep down I was meant to take the leap into a personally meaningful new career. Luckily, my intuition is nothing if not persistent and after regular and frequent nagging I finally woke up to the fact that it was my responsibility to make this happen – or not.

Knowing to doingAligning insight with action

I read somewhere that the gap between knowing and doing is greater than the gap between knowing and not knowing – and I totally concur!

This is certainly reflected in much of the work I do with my clients – it’s not that they don’t KNOW what to do because more often than not they DO know! It’s that they feel like they’re stranded on the side of a big ravine with ‘knowing’ on one side and ‘doing’ on the other.

In ‘the gap’ between the two lies things like fear, procrastination, perfectionism and overwhelm – all of which are completely normal but challenging enough for them to seek support to help them bridge the gap between the two. (Come to think of it, bridging the gap between knowing and doing is a pretty good way to describe coaching!)

So what’s the thing that you KNOW but have yet to actually DO something about?

Is it that you KNOW…

  • you want to turn your idea into a business?
  • you want to start running groups?
  • you want to take your work online?
  • you want to quit the 9 to 5 and make a living on your own terms?
  • it’s time to turn this thing you call a hobby into something bigger?
  • the time has come to shift things up a gear and double the income from your current business this year?

 

Well, whatever it is, the question is:

What are going to DO about it?

Was that a sharp intake of breath I heard at the mention of the ‘D’ word? Well fear not if you’re hesitant because there are things you can do right here, right now to help you make a start:

  • Recognise and acknowledge the ‘something’ that’s calling you

    Let’s face it, it’s pretty impossible to get results when you can’t even admit you want them! Instead of repeatedly turning a deaf ear choose to hear it. Don’t keep shrugging it off when it hits you – notice how it makes you feel. Actually acknowledging what you KNOW can initiate a subtle but very powerful shift.

  • Voice it

    Keeping your dreams unexpressed only leads to doubts, resentment and frustration and you begin to loose trust with your self. Voicing your intentions and articulating your ideas is a great way to validate them and start making them real.

  • Take the first step first

    You don’t need to see a clear path to the end to start – you just need to start! I’ve seen it time and time again how the decision to START becomes the catalyst for action, creating possibilities that had zero percent chance of happening before. It immediately shifts your focus from staring at the impossible path in front of you to starting the journey.

  • First, identify your whys

    There’s an essential emotional connection with what you’re trying to achieve, to do with your purpose, your mission and your vision. Getting in touch with the underlying meaning of your work means your motivation comes from a much deeper place. When you know your whys, the hows can’t get in your way.

  • Swap fear for feedback

    Fear is procrastination’s best friend and together they do a pretty effective job of keeping us stuck in the Knowing-Doing Gap! The phrase ‘there is no failure, only feedback’ is one of those gems worth remembering because it means exactly that – every time you make a new mistake you learn what you need to do to move closer to where you want to be. Great things can take a while to get right but if you give up because you’re scared to try, you’ve failed by default.

  • Less waiting, more action!

    ‘Waiting’ isn’t going to make it happen! The ONLY way to get where you want be is by taking action – but you already knew this I’m sure!  Motivation, along with inspiration, possibilities and opportunities only come through taking action – however imperfect the actions may be. Start where you are and do what you can with what you have NOW.

I’ve learned that if something IS calling you, it’s calling you for a reason. It WANTS you to hear because it believes you deserve to have this and that it is totally possible for you to find a way to make it happen.

I won’t pretend it’s easy, because it isn’t. Responding to something deep down in your heart of all places is a scary thing! But I know that living with the consequences of NOT doing anything about what you know is harder.

MUCH harder.

Bridging the gap

Ignoring what you KNOW you need to be doing is actually much more difficult. Because it doesn’t go away, it’s always ‘there’ in the back of your mind, eating away at you, keeping you unfulfilled and frustrated – and of course, making success impossible.

So, will you make the commitment to bridge the gap, to start shaping your professional and personal future in the way you want? Or will you wait and watch another year pass by, stuck in the Knowing-Doing Gap?

Please DON’T do that!

Instead, let’s just talk it through and find a way for you to start moving toward your dream.

Let me leave you with a question….

If I were to ask you to acknowledge and verbalise ONE thing you absolutely KNOW…. ONE thing you’ve been pussy-footing around…. ONE thing you KNOW would be best for you and your business – what would it be?

How about being brave and letting us know in the comments below? Leaving a comment certainly counts as taking action!

Beware of the blueprintIt’s completely natural for us to be inspired by someone who’s achieved the level of success we aspire to. If THEY can do it, we reason, surely WE can too – especially if we have insider access to the secrets of their success.

And everywhere you look these days, it seems someone’s offering to share their ‘secrets’ in the form of a success blueprint. You know the type of thing:

“Follow my proven 7-Step Blueprint and you too can build a 6 figure business like me!”

Now, if you think you detect a hint of cynicism creeping in here – you’d be right! If there’s one thing I’ve learned from being in business for myself for a decade and more, it’s that there is NO magic formula…. NO one-size-fits-all approach…. and NO proven blueprint.

But back in the day, when I was looking around for guidance at the very start of my business journey, I was seduced into buying one such ‘proven’ blueprint. I naively thought that I all I had to do was follow the blueprint, duplicate exactly what the blueprint owner did and success would surely be mine, all mine……right?

Well, let’s just say the story didn’t end well, so if you like a happy ending turn away now! Because along the way, I discovered something which made my failure inevitable…… and you don’t need to be a genius to guess what it was:

I WASN’T HER!

Even though I tried hard to ‘adopt’ her strategies (after all, this was a proven blueprint!) it soon became obvious that there was a fundamental element missing – me!

I know hindsight is a wonderful thing but if I had thought it through properly at the start I would have realised that the blueprint owner and I were worlds apart in SO many ways and it became increasingly apparent that….

  • I didn’t even want a business like hers
  • I didn’t want to work the unsustainable number of hours she was working to achieve success
  • Her strategies simply weren’t congruent with who I was or how I wanted do business
  • Replicating her blueprint meant having to turn myself into something I’m not

 

So, you get the picture.

Replicating another person's blueprint The thing was, as much as I admired this woman, we were very different people with different values, style, personality, resources and expertise.

I felt like I was walking in someone else’s shoes and before I’d gone very far, the pinch-points began to blister and hurt and I had no option but to reluctantly limp away.

So it’ll probably come as no surprise when I tell you that it was certainly NOT an experience I wanted to repeat!

Don’t get me wrong, I still continue to regularly invest in both my personal and professional development but I consciously choose to work only with those who support me in growing my business MY way and NOT those who are only interested in offering me THEIR success blueprint.

You’re a unique individual not a clone!

So has this resonated with you? Maybe you’ve also tried someone else’s strategies only to be left wondering why you can’t make them work?

If blueprints aren’t the answer – what is?

Having some sort of a structure or framework to guide you through the maze of opportunities that exist for you and your business can make SUCH a difference and working with mentors and coaches can be HUGELY beneficial… you simply need to choose carefully!

Find a good fit

I know how important it is to be a good match for my clients in my own business. I know I’m a very good coach, but I am not the best business coach for everyone. I wouldn’t expect anyone to commit to us working together without having had a conversation first so that TOGETHER we can decide if my programme would be the best support for you.

And in case you’re wondering, I HAVE turned down potential clients who were looking for something outside the scope of what I do well. We can only become an effective collaboration IF we are a good fit – like any relationship, there has to be chemistry.

It’s YOUR business, not theirs

Look for someone who can guide you rather than tell you exactly what to do. Someone who can lead you through the maze of opportunities and help you find the right path to take you where YOU want to be. Someone who will encourage you to embrace your uniqueness, NOT a watered-down version of who THEY are.

So if nothing else, my ‘blueprint experience’ taught me a valuable lesson I’ve never forgotten and one that I’ve integrated into absolutely everything I do in my business today:

Don’t try to be something you’re not and instead, embrace your true authenticity.

The more I reflect upon it, the more I’ve come to realise that EVERY business benefits from being an authentic expression of the person who creates it. Get this right and things will flow and feel effortless. AND, not only is it easier, it’s also HUGELY more rewarding and enjoyable!

Now, over to you…

Do you have a ‘Blueprint’ experience to share? Maybe it worked well for you – in which case why do you think that was? What do you look for in a mentor or coach? What makes someone a ‘good fit’ for you?

Please share your thoughts in the comments below – I look forward to reading them!

P.S…..

If you have dreams and ideas you want to bring out into the world but are frustrated and overwhelmed because you’re just not sure what you need to DO in order to make those dreams a reality, I’d love to help. I offer FOUR complimentary Clarity Calls each month which are totally without obligation for those of you who are ready to focus on growing your precious business YOUR way!  Request a complimentary session with me here