I’m someone who LOVES to spend money on services and products!

I love to learn, I love everyone’s online course, and I love to continually refine my crafts.

I also love World Market rug sales, and books. Oh, so many books.

This week, I was in the market for over $2500 worth of products and services. But I only bought a bunch of books on Amazon.

Here’s what I didn’t buy:
√ An advanced online course on copywriting
√ Copywriting services (haha, see the irony?)
√ A mastermind on unleashing the feminine divine (I think I’m turning into a boy, between the karate and the sports cars)
√ 60 Cupcakes for my sister’s shower
√ Vitamin supplements for vegans
√ High end boxing gloves

(I resisted the World Market rugs. Barely).

This list doesn’t even include all the mailing lists I didn’t join, the FB pages I didn’t like, and all the opportunities businesses had to convert me into a warm lead.

In fact, I’ll probably never see any of those businesses ever again.

(Hint: This is a moral tale.) 

So why did I end up with more books (that I know I’m only going to read 3 chapters of), and nothing else?

Was it the price? Are courses and coaching services more expensive?

Sure, but that’s NOT why I bought the $9.99 book instead.

Is it the branding? 

Nope. In fact the reason I almost bought all those things was EXCELLENT branding, messaging, and copywriting.

In fact, most of those places had an awesome Instagram feed, or a really compelling FB post.

The difference is a big yellow button.

It takes me 10 seconds to order a book. In fact, Amazon makes it nearly impossible for me NOT to order a book!

==> It took me over 4 minutes to figure out how to even get NEAR the opportunity to buy or order from the other services. <==

People, I value my time. And my kids value my attention.

And in fact, it’s pretty generous that I even spent 4 minutes searching. (Only because I LOVE those cupcakes, I do! They’re worth my 4 minutes).

Most people are GONE within 10-30 seconds.

How does this translate to your coaching business?

Please, give your biz a BIG AUDIT after this post.  I’ve provided this checklist for you to use to go through your social media and website.

How hard are you making it for people to buy from you? 

More importantly, why are you making it so hard?

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    1) I didn’t know if it was for me. I came across an awesome-looking challenge the other day… the registration page was epic! The coach’s bio was amazing! The words were compelling. Except I had no idea if I could sign up. Was it for entrepreneurs? Professionals? Moms? I don’t think it was for moms. Maybe it was for moms! I don’t know. I clicked away because I was confused. 

    SOLUTION: Be very clear on who this is for. Say it aloud, and then speak to that person. Translate your coach jargon into muggle speak, please. No one knows who “empowerment + fulfillment” are for. The “life of my dreams” looks different for moms, vegans, and CEOs. If it’s for everyone, it’s for no one.

    2) I could not figure out how to get more information. There was NO website link on their personal FB page, and once I finally searched for their FB Biz page, there was no website. I gave up.

    Solution: Use the “ABOUT” or “BIO” section of your social media account to point people to your FB Biz page or your website right away. One click, no digging! Include it in the comments of your posts.

    3) I wasn’t invited to the party. I wasn’t in a place to buy at this moment but would LOVE to get their mailing list and get more info and wisdom. Too bad. Once I got through the post or FB live, there was no way to stay in the world of their business. 

    SOLUTION:  Each time you make a long post or a FB live or any marketing that calls people to you, please follow up with a link to your mailing list or opt-in. No mailing list? At least have a FB group, but honestly – that’s really not the best way to claim “property” in your business.  It’s a nice bonus strategy, but as we recently learned from FB’s outage – we can lose that “property” at any time.

    4) You made it about you, not me.  I was SOOOO into the content… and the next thing I know, the coach got needy. The post turned into “Please get on my mailing list SO I CAN COMMUNICATE WITH YOU,” or “Please fill out  my survey so I CAN MAKE SERVICES”.

    SOLUTION: When you want a potential customer to do something (a call to action)… Be sure to ask yourself What’s In It For Them? Why should I join your mailing list? Why should I visit your website? Why should I take your market research survey?  Then COMMUNICATE THE BENEFIT CLEARLY.

    5) There wasn’t anything to buy. This was kind of mind-boggling to me from folks who say they’re going to run a business… with nothing to sell. 

    Listen, *just* having a “Schedule a discovery session” call to action is off-putting. Coaching is still relatively new to the world. People want to be reassured that they can step into a discovery call knowing what it is they might purchase. At LEAST put a baseline package, with or without price, on your site, please.


    It’s more complicated than that, but it boils down to: People do the things that take the least response effort.

    In other words, I buy books off amazon prime because Big Yellow Button. In fact, it is literally called “One-click ordering”. <== LOW RESPONSE EFFORT

    Much less response effort than hunting down the cupcake lady on her very few hours in the bakery, having to look up the number each time because it’s not on their social media site, and having no pricing sheet on the site that guides me to know what I’m buying! <== HIGH RESPONSE EFFORT

    Response effort is behind all the science of why people buy. It’s important for you to audit your own site + social media profiles as though you were someone *just* interested in you for the first time.

    I’ve provided a very basic checklist to get you started. Pop your email in here to download it. Then come on over to The Coach’s Playground and tell me: What did you change in your business set up to invite people into your world more easily?



    Maybe you’ve been in therapy before.

    You go, sit for your 45 minutes,  then write your check. The therapist whips out her appointment book and pencils you in for the following week. 
    This goes on indefinitely until one of you decides you don’t need to go anymore. This session-to-session model is the one we’re familiar with. 

    In this article, I’m sharing with you why it’s NOT the best model for a life coaching practice. Both YOUR BUSINESS and YOUR CLIENT can benefit from packaging your services, and here’s why!


    Packaging your services simply means finding a way to offer your potential client the opportunity to purchase bunch of sessions or time at once.  

    ​For example, you might buy 10 Personal Training sessions at your gym. You might buy an Unlimited number of washes per month at your local car wash (hello, white car!) 


      Think about getting a massage. You go and plunk down your credit card for the massage. It’s amazing, and you internally commit to doing this for yourself at least once every couple weeks. 

      But do you? 

      Leaving what I call a “commitment gap” in between sessions leaves rooms for all kinds of “germs” that interfere with the coaching process.

      • The “things are getting real and suddenly I don’t have time for coaching so I’m not scheduling another session” germ
      • The “I ran out of money” germ
      • The “I’m not sure this is working and the process is scary so I’ll just ‘put coaching on hold'” germ

      You + I both know that these kinds of drop-offs are due to the client’s fears, gremlins, or getting too close to their own greatness.
      Packaging your services is how you close the commitment gap so they can engage fully in a long-term process that helps them get where they want to go.

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        As coaches, we lead with heart, but we’d also like to leave our dayjobs! The session-to-session model leaves us in the present moment, financially. While the present moment is a beautiful place to be spiritually… we’d like to look into the future and know that income is on its way in a few months, too! Check out why packaging in your business is a more secure way to work.

        • Packaging your services means you can create payment plans. Payment plans make coaching more accessible to your client… and means that you have predicable income on its way!
        • When you package your services, you can roll in all the extra work you do for your clients – texting, emailing, and so forth.
        • People subconsciously compare your “rate per hour” to their own “rate per hour” – and if you come out too much higher, they’ll feel they “can’t afford it”.
        • By having predictable income coming down the line, you can sink more into the part of your business you LOVE – the Service phase. When you are wondering if your clients will renew session to session, then you’ve got to spend more time in the Growth and Sales phases of your business.


        This is where creativity meets coaching. I LOVE watching the awesome and innovative ways coaches have come up with to package their services. The possibilities are limitless!
        Packaging your services is an opportunity to design something truly transformational to meet the unique needs of your clients. 

        ​Let’s dive in.


        Month to month: 
        The first and simplest approach to packaging your services is to offer a monthly rate.  Instead of “$150 an hour” you might offer something like:
        $650 per month includes:

        • 4 x 45 minute deep dive coaching calls
        • 1 x 15 minute “SOS” call for Breakthrough Laser Coaching
        • Access to the coach’s personal email for longer updates, so we can TOTALLY concentrate on the present when we get on the phone

        Multiple months: 
        This is similar to packaging by month, but allows your client to sink into the energy of a longer process, while creating a payment plan option as well!  These are fun and you can name them all kinds of creative things!
        This might look like:

        $2500 for 3 months of life coaching includes: (Payable in installments of half up front, and $625 the following 2 months)

        • 1 x 90 minute “Foundations” session where we assess where you are, and set goals for where you want to go
        • 3 x 60 minute deep dive calls per month
        • 3 “SOS” calls for Breakthrough Laser Coaching
        • Access to your coach’s personal cell phone for texts

        Multiple sessions: Similar to the trainer at the gym, selling multiple sessions at once still gives the client agency over when they book those sessions, while communicating that this is a long term process.  This is also a nice way to graduate clients to a “maintenance plan” as needed. Multiple sessions might look like:

        • The JumpStart: Buy 10 sessions, get the 11th free
        • The Maintenance: 5 follow up sessions to be used at client’s discretion

        Notice I’m not including any bells and whistles here! This is straight up coaching sessions.

        If you choose this model, it’s important you ask the client at the end of each session, “When would you like to book your next session?” That way, they don’t leave sessions hanging over your head.

        It is also important to outline the terms and conditions such as by when they should be used by or be forfeited – you don’t want people coming back in 10 years with unused sessions!


        As you work with clients, you’ll pretty quickly notice your OWN coaching rhythm. You’ll notice how long it takes you to do values work, or how long it takes the clients to start to gel with coaching and really rock and roll. 

        At this point, you can start creating packages using the information you’re gathering from your clients, and some of your own expertise as well!

        *Note: Some of these models divert from a PURE coaching model. In that case, you just want to be CLEAR about the role you are playing in the package, e.g. Coach + Mentor, Coach + Personal Trainer*

        Multiple Sessions Around a Theme:​ In a pure coaching model, we don’t promise “outcomes,” of course.  But what if you’re a health coach, and you specialize in overcoming emotional eating?

        Your 1:1 package might look like:

        • 8 Weeks to Explore Emotional Eating and Develop Intuitive Health Habits 
        • 6 x 60 minute 1:1 coaching sessions sessions
        • Review of Daily Food Triggers Journal
        • 2 Recommended Eating Plans to Break Emotional Eating Habits

        I didn’t say “Overcome Emotional Eating”. I didn’t promise they’d be done with it in 8 weeks. 
        In this model the 8 weeks of coaching will be centered around their relationship with food. Other areas of life will of course come into play, but this package is targeted as a specific specialty. 

        This health coach may have noticed that quite a few of her clients are coming to her and working through emotional eating triggers. By pulling out this theme or specialty, she’s creating an opportunity for people to focus on this one important aspect of a healthy relationship with their bodies.

        A group coaching program, around a theme:
        Once our health coach has noticed this theme, she might want to organize several people around a group program focused on this theme. The package stays the same, but the number of people enrolled would change.

        These packages still focus mostly on open-ended, pure coaching. The health coach might have the group or individual focusing on one area, but the client/group will still bring the agenda to the table.

        The only difference is the theme​ the sessions are organized around.


        Once our health coach has worked with quite a few (paid OR free) clients, she will be really familiar with the ways that themes are unfolding for them.

        She’ll notice they all need to overcome inner critic voice in order to have sustained weight loss.  Or she’ll notice that of her last 12 clients, 10 were working moms struggling to balance nutrition and a busy schedule.

        At this point, s/he might develop a Signature Program. This is a step-by-step system the coach will walk the client(s) through, either 1:1 or in a group.​

        In a signature program, the coach might simply outline a number of coaching tools and exercises that s/he will use to help clients towards an ultimate outcome.

        S/he might also bring in her own expertise in a hybrid coaching-teaching program, but leave plenty of time for coaching as well.

        A 1:1 Signature Program might look like this:

        • A 12-Week Journey to Developing a “Fit Gal’s” Mindset
        • 10 x 45 minute 1:1 deep dive sessions
        • 8 pre-recorded training modules on developing a Fit-Gal Mindset
        • Access to an online FB community *just* for Health Coach’s personal clients
        • A Daily Success Visualization by Health Coach

        This same signature program, with a few tweaks, can also be used as a group program.

        • A 12-Week Journey to Developing a “Fit Gal’s” Mindset
        • 10 x 45 minute group teaching/coaching sessions
        • 8 pre-recorded training modules on developing a Fit-Gal Mindset
        • Access to an online FB community *just* for Health Coach’s group coaching and 1:1 clients
        • A Daily Success Visualization by Health Coach
        • Get paired up with an Accountability Buddy

        Now, naming programs isn’t my thing, and “fit-girl mindset” doesn’t scream “Yes! Me Me Me!”

        The point here is that you can start to incorporate your skill set and expertise along with your coaching skills to start teaching people how to make change… and coaching them through the blocks stopping them from making that change.


        Creativity can REALLY soar when thinking about learning aids and services to include in your packages. Coaches can be naturally generous people, so when we create a container like this… we tend to want to fill it up to the top!

        A word of caution – be sure you charge adequately in exchange for what you offer with your package! Don’t get yourself into a Resentment Rut of having to read emails and be interrupted in your personal life with constant texts if you don’t feel you’re making enough money for that!

        Caution aside, there are lots of things you can include in a package. The important part is the coaching sessions, and then choosing what truly would serve to help your client transform.

        • Coaching sessions – 1:1 or group
        • Text, SOS text, Celebration Text, Daily Accountability Text
        • Email, Looong Story Email (so they don’t have to tell you on the phone), Journal Email
        • Branded Triggers Journal, Food Diary, Leadership Triggers Diary
        • Longer Foundations Session to review coaching package, expectations, Assess
        • .pdf, worksheet, guide
        • Visualization, Meditation audios
        • Pre-recorded teaching modules (leaves more room for the coaching!)

        The possibilities are endless. Keep it super simple at first and build with ease if you choose to!

        The First 5 Steps to Starting Your Coaching Business

        The First 5 Steps to Starting Your Coaching Business

        Coach training gives you an awesome skill set – helping people achieve transformation! 

        But do you feel adequately prepared to launch and run a life coaching practice? 

        Don’t worry – many coaches come out of training in love with the profession, eager to be of service, and completely baffled as to where to start.   Most jump right into a website, tagline, and business cards and logos so they feel official.

        The thing is, a website and all that other stuff needs to speak to your audience. It’s critical to get to know your audience before you start churning out marketing materials.  

        Could you ever imagine Nike coming out with the “Swish” and “Just Do It” without knowing the market they intend to reach?

        Here’s my take on the FIRST 5 things to do once you become a life coach.

        1. Get Your Legal Handled

        Each country, state, county, and town have different legal requirements to operate as a business. A good place to start is your local Small Business Association website. Learn exactly what you need to know to form a business entity. This step protects you and your assets.

        I was really overwhelmed by this step, so I hired a company to do it for me! It was called Corporate Creations… but there are scores of companies who will do the set up and maintenance of a legal business entity for you.

        ​Nothing feels better than ACTUALLY being in business. Having a legal biz entity is more official than any website or business cards. It’s the real deal!

        ​Besides, you’ll need to do this step so you can start CHARGING MOOLA.

        2. Set Up a Business Bank Account

        Once you have a legal business entity, you’re able to set up a business bank account. And once you have a business bank account, you can set up a payment processor like PayPal.

        Being able to accept money signals the Universe that not only are you READY to get paid… you’re setting out a beautiful place setting and inviting money to the party! 

        This step is as energetically important as it is legally important. Yes, business cards feel great… but knowing you’re legally set up to take money feels… official. 

        I’ll never forget walking into Chase bank and walking out with papers that proved I could accept money as a business owner. It was triumphant!

        3. Learn About the People You Hope to Serve

        Before you take another step, you’ll want to learn about the people you’d like to serve.  Every good business – from vacuums to car manufacturing to wooden shims to coaching – takes a moment to learn what people want

        As soon as we get out of coach school – or any trade, really – we are armed with a new vocabulary that we adore. For coaches, we’ve learned the language of transformation. 

        However, the world doesn’t speak that language. So if you run around telling people you’re a “health coach” and you “empower people to shift their mindset around food” – it’s like running into the south of Spain and asking where the bathroom is and could you get a beer… in Hungarian. You might find 1 person, but it’s a serious crapshoot. (Side note: This happened to me in Morocco. Ask me about it sometime).

        It’s really critical to spend a couple weeks surveying, interviewing, running focus groups, getting people together and on the phone and on coffee dates and answering surveys and listening. Ask them questions about what they want. Pay careful attention to their language. Record it all, Write it all down. Notice trends. Notice phrases that zing you between the eyes and save them for later.

        Market Research doesn’t have to be complicated at all. It doesn’t even have to be that extensive, because you’re going to be doing market research for as long as you’re a business owner. But get at least 8-10 people who are willing to give you GOOD answers about the work you’re interested in doing!

        If you want help setting up your market research so you can get massive clarity AND attract clients easily, email me for a discovery session!

        Q: But JJ, then shouldn’t Step 3 be: Declare your niche? 
        A: Yes/No. More on that in a later blog post! But in short, market research can help you figure that out. Just get going. 

        Once you have more information about the day-to-day blocks, struggles, thoughts, beliefs, and dreams of people you’d be interested in working with, you can go on to step 4.

        Click here to subscribe

        4. Put Yourself Out There

        Pick ONE. Pick ONE way that you want to get out there and rock the hell out of it. Choose FB Biz page, LinkedIn, or whatever platform you want to (and one that you think your folks might be on).

        ​Start using all that great market research to post, record video, create graphics, make helpful things and give them away… start creating a foundation of content on ONE site. 

        Even if you don’t want an “online business,” I highly recommend you use social media as an advertising tool. It is a FREE 21st Century marketing opportunity and over 1billion people are using social media every day. Even if you are planning to go to networking events, guess what? People are going to look you up on social media to see what you’re about.

        I always say, you don’t HAVE to do anything but grow old and die (and even that’s in question these days!)  But leaving FREE advertising and the opportunity to show your stuff on the table isn’t the best business sense. Consider getting your business a dedicated social media platform and work it!

        This piece is ESPECIALLY important because it will help you nail step 5.

        5. Invite People into the World of Your Business

        Networking is great. Give out your business cards, have great conversations, and commit yourself to having to reach out over + over again to keep yourself top of mind? Exhausting.

        Social media is awesome. You do a FB live, people are crazy about it, they’re like “Thank you, thank you!” and then… they never come back to your page again because FB doesn’t put it in front of them.

        Putting yourself out there in person and on social media is like creating a beautiful window display that attracts people. But ultimate, you need them to STEP INSIDE THE STORE.

        This is where you’ll want to use a service to create a MAILING LIST. Creating a mailing list means that you now have control over how often you are able to let people know what you’re up to.

        Creating a mailing list also means that you’ll have the opportunity to be of service and send out helpful tips and mindset shifts whenever you want to. 

        Having a mailing list means that instead of being a victim to the algorithms of social media, or having to wait until the next networking event and hope the right people show up…

        You get to put your offers and coaching in front of people whenever you want to.

        Think of ALL the businesses you care about, from Target to Anthropologie to the local cheese shop. Think about really successful coaches you follow in any industry. 


        Get yourself a mailing list going from day one. There are plenty of free- and low cost List Management Services that are incredibly easy to use. You Tube can help you learn any skill you need to know. Don’t be intimidated by this – I’ve walked plenty of coaches through this step and every single one of them figured it out! I have never had anyone walk away from doing a mailing list because it was too hard.

        Q: But JJ, I don’t want to have to send a weekly thing and I don’t like writing and I don’t know how I’ll do that.
        A: Don’t worry. You don’t have to send a weekly thing.
         As you get more fluent, you’ll want to use your mailing list to stay top of mind. You’ll create an Editorial Calendar (which I teach in Put Yourself Out There) to make it easy on yourself. And you’ll plan 30- days ahead… and then 60- … and then 90 days ahead, so you don’t have to worry about figuring out what you’re sending.

        Even if you don’t like to write, a newsletter means you can send audio files to your folks! What if you’re a runner, and get great inspiration to send to your subscribers while you’re running? Create a voice memo and send it out to them. You can even have it transcribed for cheap. 
        What if you love to speak, or feel great about using video? WOOT! Send them a video. 
        What if you meditate and during meditation, you get little 5- and 6- sentence downloads? 
        Visual artist? Send coaching art!

        You can make a mailing list YOURS, to express yourself however you want. The folks who are into it will stay and be your loyal fans. The folks who aren’t are free to leave using the Unsubscribe button, and bless them for seeking full alignment! 

        The bottom line is, use a mailing list to TAKE RESPONSIBILITY as a business owner. Leaving your success up to the latest networking meeting or up to social media’s algorithms is not a reliable idea.  Use public speaking, social media, and networking to build a list of people who will buy for you when they’re ready.

        Here’s what’s NOT in this list:

        Notice I didn’t talk about:

        • Business cards

        • Logo

        • Website

        • Tagline

        • Elevator speech

        Once you have really generated some interest, learned the language of your people, and discovered what’s important to them..
        And used social media to see what kinds of topics people engage in and what they don’t…
        And gotten a mailing list up and running to see what kind of people sign up…

        THEN you can start branding, creating an outcome-driven tagline, and generating website copy.  All of those activities should be driven by what the MARKET says, not by what you pull out of your head.

        So PUT YOURSELF OUT THERE coach!  At best, you’ll start generating interest and clients. At worst, you’ll be PLAYFULLY experimenting to see what really resonates with YOU and with the POTENTIAL MARKET, and making tweaks as you go along. There’s no fail here!

        Let’s Recap

        1. Get your legal handled. Form a legal entity so you’re safe and don’t have to have that negative energy bouncing around in the back of your brain.
        2. Get your money  handled. Create a business bank account so you can announce to the universe you’re ready for abundance. Bonus: Get an easy to use payment processor like PayPal going on so you can easily create buttons for your sales pages, or send invoices.
        3. Market Research. Learn what people care about, dream about, and what their blocks are BEFORE running around making websites and stuff. Learn the language of the country you’re stepping into.
        4. Put Yourself Out There. Pick ONE platform to focus on. Get one plate spinning and kill it! Use your market research to cultivate an awesome platform of content and expertise.
        5. Create a mailing list. Get control of your business and your ability to put yourself in front of people whenever you want to. It’s helpful for folks interested in your work, and it’s essential for business.

        Let’s Get Going, Coach!

        I can’t wait to see you TAKE OFF using these 5 steps! Remember, there’s a bigger picture here:

        If we could get a life coach behind EVERY influential person from politicians to celebrities to influencers on YouTube… imagine what could be possible! Say YES to that vision and get going!

        Ditch the Pitch… 3 Alternatives to the Awkward “I help” statement

        Ditch the Pitch… 3 Alternatives to the Awkward “I help” statement

        You feel confident that coaching can help people….

        …But you have the HARDEST time describing it.  That can be a huge block to bringing business in!

        The first thing we hear is “You gotta niche down” and the second thing we hear is “create a compelling elevator pitch”.

        Now, I am probably the ONLY person who actually talks to people on elevators… and I have NEVER chatted with someone about what we do for a living.

        In the last month, I’ve had a number of people approach me, saying, “You’re a life coach? What does that mean? What do you do?”

        Once upon a time I would have kind of frozen at the dreaded “So what do you do?” question. Over time, I realized it’s because I was trying to fit into this weird “elevator pitch” model that always starts with “I help….”

        Who talks like that?

        Doctors don’t say, “I help people with arthritis discover natural ways to reduce their inflammation…. ”  They say, “I’m a rheumatologist” or “I’m a naturopath”.

        Teachers don’t say, “I help young people learn critical cognitive skills like math and science so that they can have a successful educational create and embrace a love of learning”.

        Why do life coaches have to jump through all these insane hoops, spewing out these weird elevator pitches, contorting natural human language into this stilted, wacky statement?

        (Rant over).

        I’m offering you 3 more NATURAL ways to help educate people about what you do without feeling like a verbal ice queen.  

        Wouldn’t it be great to just have your profession roll off your tongue?

        Click here to subscribe



        This simple tweak made me feel SOOO much less ‘sales-y’ and so much more service oriented! 

        ​Instead of “I help working moms finally lose the last 20 pounds of baby weight…” try:

        “I LOVE helping working moms finally ditch that last 20 pounds… ”  It’s a one-word tweak that communicates your passion and enthusiasm for your work. 


        The most natural thing to do when someone asks, “What do you do for work?” is to answer with a profession.  “I’m a life coach”.  Or, you can be a little quirky if you want them to ask more: “I’m a life coach and no, I don’t tell people what to do wink wink!”
        Another variation is, “I”m a life coach for [people who want to lose weight/people in career transition/new college grads].

        If someone is interested in personal development, they’ll ask you more about what you do. They’ll have heard of a life coach, or their ears will perk up. 


        A lot of recommended elevator pitches start with “I help [women in mid-life whose kids have left the house/men looking to leave a legacy in their careers] …”
        If that feels awkward to you, try engaging the listener with some questions instead.
        “You know how sometimes we do all the things we’re supposed to do in life? Get educated, get a job, get married, nice house… and then one day we look around and realize we are not at all as happy as we thought we’d be?”

        “You know how we have kids, and work hard, and care for everyone around us, and keep thinking those pounds will come off when we get it together, but somehow they never do?”

        Your listener will inevitably nod, especially if you’re thinking on the fly and can include them in the description. If you really  hit the nail on the head, they’ll start talking about it right away… giving you an awesome opportunity to acknowledge and validate.

        (Hint: That’s the “pitch” that had 2 new clients practically pulling their checkbooks out of their pockets!)

        I’d love to know: what natural sounding alternatives have you used to explain what you do for a living? Come over to The Coach’s Playground FREE FB Mastermind group and SHARE!



        Once Upon a Time….

        a girl went to college and got a Master’s Degree and then almost got another one except she got married + pregnant.

        She got really, really, REALLY good at her career. On paper, she even loved it. Except in reality, she was drained.

        The more time she spent away from her baby doing something that drained her, the more resentful and hopeless she started to feel.  

        So she decided to make a career switch and start a business as a life coach. She went through an intensive life coach training program. She knew she was a really good coach and would get even better with practice.

        Except she was too busy to run a business.  Between her full-time job, her baby (and now another child on the way), regular responsibilities, motherhood exhaustion in general, and all of life’s obligations… 

        She could not seem to find the time to do what she wanted to do – coach! – never mind do the work to get clients.

        Does this sound familiar to you? By the time you walk the dogs and do the career (which, let’s face it, is more than 9-5)… there’s no time leftover to start a business.

        Sit down. We have to talk, because if you’re waiting until life gets “less busy,” then you’re committing to coaching being a nice hobby.

        Life is never, ever, ever going to be less busy.  There will NOT be a part where “the baby goes to kindergarten” or “this big project at work is going to be over” or “my spouse will be home more”.

        There is no “less busy”. And no one ever likes to hear that.

        Busy is just a symptom of failure to prioritize.

        If you’re thinking, “But you don’t understand, I have more on my plate than most people,” then this applies especially ESPECIALLY to you.

        The fact of the matter is you will need to make prioritization decisions in order to start a business while working full time and doing all the other life things.

        Here’s a few things to ask yourself to start making the shift towards prioritizing your business.

        1) To what extent are you willing to prioritize your dream over other people some of the time?

        This is a question for the caregivers. The moms and dads, the people caring for aging parents, and the people who are in helping professional that leak into their personal lives. We think we “have to” prioritize everyone else first, because we’re trained to do it. Feelings of guilt come up when we do something “selfish” like work on our dreams.

        Usually this points to the question: “Will I sacrifice caring for others to serve a business that isn’t even making money yet?”
        It’s like we can’t justify prioritizing our business over people, until the business is “worth it”. 

        I think you can see where this is going.

        2) To what extent are you willing to prioritize your dream of starting a business over being the absolute 100% always-available, go-to, best of the best, checks email first thing every morning and responds all weekend person at your job?

        This question is for the people who work their asses off at their careers because they’re good at it. They fear repercussions if they’re not available all the time and super-responsive via email. They’re at the mercy of their bosses, clients, teams, and projects. They have a hard time leaving work on the desk.

        Prioritizing work 100% of the time usually points to an unwillingness to prioritize anything that doesn’t have a sure-shot 

        3) To what extent are you willing to stop looking at your coaching practice as “all or nothing”?

        This question is for those who can’t find a way past the “chicken and the egg” paralyzing block. I either run my coaching practice full time and leave my job, or I stay in my job and don’t have time for my coaching practice.

        There are sooooo many possibilities in between those black and white options. Would you rather have zero clients, or 2 clients? 

        Definitely 2 clients, right? If they’re paying you, and you’re making some money on the side… how is that a bad thing?

        Are they not enough because they’re not 12 clients?

        What if someday they turn into a steady stream of 5 clients that pay you well enough to cut back to part time or seek a part time job?

        What if the dream does take 5 years… but still happens? What if you end up working part time and coaching part time forever? Is that still better than working full time at a soul-sucking job? Probably!

        4) To what extent are you willing to prioritize your business over your self-care?

        Yes, I said it. I think self-care is important.  We need our soul-fulfilling activities, hobbies, boundaries, nutrition, and naps.

        However, I have seen far too many coaches throw “self care” up as a block.  They won’t get up early because “self care”. They have to nap because “self care”. They cannot get groceries delivered because they have to touch every cucumber themselves. They won’t cut back on anything at all, ever because “self care”.

        Here’s what all these questions have in common, and what I’m asking you to explore.

        No one is asking you to give up ALL the time with the kids, ALL the job ambition, ALL the self-care, or ALL the hobbies, all of the time.

        I am asking what you’re willing to shift some of the time to make time for your business, the thing you SAY is your dream.


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        The TIME EXCUSE is really FEAR, and a very specific fear:

        ​When I dig down into these questions with my clients, it comes down to this:

        What if I sacrifice time with my kids, or ambition at my job, or self-care… for something that in the end, doesn’t work?

        But don’t worry, I’m not going to leave you staring your demon in the face, without some practical solutions. 

        • We have to find out what the right actions are to take to grow a business, rather than sacrificing time with our kids just to scroll through Facebook and hope we hit on a client.
        • We have to detach from the outcome of the business and ask what we’re getting out of the journey that makes it worthwhile no matter what.
        • We have to find mentorship and help – paid, free, or other – that will help us create a business. Coaching skills are not enough to grow a business. 
        • We have to be willing to stop judging the ways other entrepreneurs are doing things, because it may be blocking our own paths to success.
        • We have to be willing + open minded about doing business in ways we didn’t consider, and taking advice from mentors who are actually making money.
        • We have to turn off “Shiny object syndrome” and develop true discernment about which mentors can actually help us (hint: if you get on a 1:1 call, ask them about outcomes they’ve had serving clients who are NOT a business to business model. I have saved hundreds of thousands of dollars asking that 1 question).

        I admit I just dished out a lot of “have to,” especially for a coach.  But after 5 years mentoring and coaching folks who are starting their businesses (and after having a successful practice myself)… I just can’t take the “busy” excuse anymore!  

        I’m dishing out this tough love from a place of advocating for you and your dreams.

        Find the fear beneath the busy. Name it and bring it to light.

        Prioritize your business regularly. No one has to give up ALL the things, but when CAN you prioritize your dream?

        Train the people around you to respect your boundaries by managing expectations and being patient while they adjust.

        You CAN learn to prioritize your business over caregiving, jobs, self-care, and anything else that ALWAYS gets the upper hand. 

        Remember, you don’t have to prioritize your biz ALL of the time… just enough of the time to be moving forward towards the life you want to create.

        My Favorite Biz Books (That are totally NOT about business)

        My Favorite Biz Books (That are totally NOT about business)

        “What’s the #1 skill I need to learn to succeed in business?”

        The first answer is, “COPYWRITING”.

        But even before being a good copywriter, it’s critical to master your mindset. Mindset mastery is what helps us LEAP out of our conditioned “9-5” mindset and into a more creative, evolving place.

        If you take your 9-5 mindset and habits with you into entrepreneurship… you’re going to create another living hell for youself.

        These books will launch you into a more creative, playful, coach-approach to life, business, and creating something entirely new for yourself.

        1. This Time I Dance:

        Every time I see Tama Kieves, the author, I thank her for ruining my life.  This book is all about taking the leap from a “stable” 9-5 environment and into the creative, wild, unknown. It gave me the courage to go out on my own.

        2. The Big Leap, by Gay Hendricks. 

        This book helped me unpack the big blocks that were holding me back from really owning + embodying my success.  Thanks to this book, I also came to understand MY unique zone of genius. Knowing my zone helped me work my way OUT of a day job while still enjoying what I was doing.

        3. A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle.

        Many people’s introduction to this author was The Power of Now.  I love the more updated A New Earth for its lyrical, feminine writing and very pragmatic approach to surrendering the Ego. The thing is, if you hold a lot of Ego in business, everything in business will trigger you and block you. Gotta get it handled.

        Visibility Challenge

        4. The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer.

        This is one of the few books I’ve listened to instead of read, but it is read by the author and I just LOVE the energy behind the book and how she communicates her own writing. It’s all about the power of community + asking. It strengthened my mindset for everything around selling in my business!

        5. Bird by Bird, Anne Lamott.

        Besides that she is hilarious, wise, and rebellious, Anne Lamott unpacks the mystery and uncertainty – and gift – of creative life like no other. The ups, downs, highs, and lows are all here, wrapped up as spiritual gifts.  And guess what? They’re the same ups, downs, highs, + lows as the creative life of an entrepreneur.