Category Archives: Coaching

Three Requirements: Trust. Commitment. Surrender

My clients weren’t getting what I thought they could. I didn’t know why.

They would jump ship, often right before a breakthrough.

Or postpone working together.

So, I would try harder and harder. New techniques. More training. More ‘free hours’ with them.

Didn’t help.

Now, admittedly, the places that people say they want to go with me are confronting. Scary.

But I listened to two pieces of advice by those who have gone before.

First, Ben Rode. “We require three things of our clients: Trust, commitment, and surrender.”

Second, by Steve Chandler, “There is a price at which people are ‘seasoning their lives’ with a bit of coaching. And there is another price at which they commit to transformation.”

Third, by Brian Whetten, “Coaching success comes from three things. 10% coaching skills. 30% the coach’s presence. And 60% from client commitment.”

And the last piece: It’s they who are responsible for their results. Not I.

 

 

How to make sure my clients were committed?

I took the plunge. I talked to current and possible clients this week, and I named, what were for me, *stratospheric* prices.

Something amazing happened.

All of the conversations were very powerful. So much more energy was present. They thanked me. Profusely.

And, a couple of them said, “Yes.” To fees which they had no idea how to pay, but they committed to finding a way. Because they could see and trust themselves, their goals, and that I would support them in getting there.

One person has been coaching with me for months. Since I told her I was raising her fees over 10x (and she happily agreed), she has had more results in five days than in all of our work before that combined.

It’s changed her thinking about herself. Money. Power. Time.

All of these beliefs are shifting. Just by charging a lot more money.

And my job got much easier. No more pushing. They are in.

Trust. Commitment. Surrender.

Trust: To the process. To their dreams. To really achieving them.

Commitment: To the path, no matter how difficult.

And surrender: To be open to try new things, be in beginner’s mind, and let go.

Tracy Elise vs Nicole Daedone

Tracy Elise, of the Phoenix Goddess Temple, was convicted on all counts of things that would make a Mafia Boss blush.

An Enemy of the State who refused to kiss the Ring of Power, those at the top are determined to make an example of her. She now faces a prison term. We don’t know for how long.

It’s a tragedy for the whole community.

Colleagues say:

“She wasn’t doing anything wrong!”
“She was in the right!”
“Consenting adults should be able to do whatever they want!”

I hear you.

I don’t know exactly what happened in the Temple. A number of my friends worked there and have reported various things. And, I am going to assume that Tracy is motivated to heal and support others, as we all are:

She isn’t into sexual healing to make a quick buck.
She wasn’t there to traffic young women into selling their bodies for cash.
She is here to heal and change the world.

So, why the prison sentence? Is the system corrupt?

Absolutely.

Is this part of a massive conspiracy against pleasure?

You betcha.

And, could she have done things differently?

Sure.

A couple quotes come to mind. “Agree with your enemy quickly, because otherwise you are going to get taken to jail.” (paraphrased)

“He was right, dead right, as he sped along. But he’s just as dead as if he were wrong.”

And, finally, “The way of the fool is right in his own eyes.”

There are three people involved in every transaction.

1. You
2. Your client
3. The greater community.

Tracy didn’t seem to understand #3.

Tracy made strategic mistakes, which led to tactical ones. And, ultimately, they led to the situation she is in now.

I admire her bravery. I admire her courage. And, though I have often thought I would die for what I believe, I can’t help but think it isn’t going to help people much if I am stuck in prison, regardless of the rightness of my cause. My scope of influence will be reduced.

If you are reading this, you probably are interested in sexuality, sexual education, and sexual healing.

Either you are practicing. Or you are teaching. Or you know that this needs to happen.

Each of us gets to decide whether we: change to a ‘safer’ career path, end up in jail, eek along with a living, live in fear of arrest, or end up creating and being part of a movement that touches millions of lives.

If you want to change the world in a big way, you must understand the greater community–and that is the one that Tracy seems not to understand.

Whatever you think about Nicole Daedone–One Taste has found a way to adapt to the world it is in, and still create and teach the structures that are healing sexual guilt and shame in the bigger community. And, by the way, it made $6.5 *million* dollars last year in the effort.

So what do we learn from these two examples?

1. It pays to get lots of good advice and support.
2. Our success lies within knowing ourselves, our clients, AND the world in which we are living and operating.

Why do I say this? Part of my mission is helping you fulfill yours–if your mission is around sexuality. We are changing the world, one person at a time. And we are doing it *together*.

One way to do this is to join a small group I am putting together to discuss the deeper strategy of *how* to create the world we want. We are not going to do it alone–none of us. All of our gifts and magic is needed. And the rewards for stepping fully into our light are beyond what we can comprehend.

If you feel called to be a part of this transformation–call me or reply to this mail. We are gathering a group who will change things in a very big way. Wisely. Intelligently. Powerfully.

What do you think? Are you in?

Pumped up or down?

breatheI used to be very critical of workshop leaders (I won’t name names, but one of them rhymes with Bony Tobbins) who ‘pump people up’–put them in a very resourced and powerful state, 1 cash the check, and then kick them back out into the world where most deflate after a couple days of ‘real life’.

I never wanted to do that.

I don’t like people messing with my state. So I avoid altering people’s state in my events.

And, I see a lot of coaching clients coming into sessions drained, depleted, and empty from the ‘war’ outside. 2

I noticed that by ‘just jumping in’, their focus and attention often wasn’t sufficient to get their results.

And, I didn’t want to pump them up’ artificially’. (‘Jumping jacks! “Turn that frown upside-down!”‘)

So I decided to go the opposite way.

What does that mean?

People have crappy lives. I mean, let’s be honest…how good is the average American life? Working a crappy job. In dead or no meaningful relationships. Sex is methodical or nonexistent. Children are a burden, stress, and pressure. 3 Commutes are killer. On and on.

And, yet, when they show up for a coach, mentor, course…they are expected to be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Happy. Resourced. Powerful.

At least, that’s how it feels.

Because, in most of our families, there was not a lot of space ‘to have a bad day’.

Repression doesn’t change how we really feel. Pumping up (whether with meth or exercise) is just temporary.

So what really helps?

Pumping down!

Pumping down is another word for grounding. It means allowing the feelings that have been repressed 4 to be.

This is coming into reality: the here and now.

This is grounding.

So, now that is what I do. Especially for people who are beginning to learn their own psychological and emotional maintenance, (which is all of us!) this is very important.

And what happens then?

People shake.

People cry.

People turn red.

And then…

It goes away. Then they are present, focused, and have more energy.

No ‘manipulation’ necessary.

How do you do that?

Wellll, that’s magic. But I can demonstrate if you call me.

 

 

  1. Meaning: a state in which it feels easier to spend lots of money
  2. Sometimes people say: I would have spoken to you/not missed our appointment, but I was having a hard time. Ahem! The time when you aren’t doing well is exactly when you need to be reaching out!
  3. BTW, how do you think it feels to a child to know this is their emotional impact on their parents?
  4. Although, not as badly if someone was doing this meditation.

Fail Frequently (and Impressively)

Wanna “succeed”?

Learn to “fail”.

Learn to fail often.

Learn to fail awesomely majestically.

Most entrepreneurs get in trouble because of fear of failure. Which looks a hundred ways:

  • Nobody coming to a free event.
  • Nobody signing up for the session.
  • Nobody recommending you to friends.
  • No money coming in.

There is only one guaranteed way to fail. And that is to stop. To give up.

How many presentations have you done?

Fail 100 speeches before you even worry about their results.

Fail with a hundred client conversations.

Fail over and over and over.

There’s only a few places where it matters to fail.

Basejumping.

Free diving.

War.

Everything else is recoverable and you learn something.

Fail. Fail a lot.

The master is the one who failed more than the novice ever succeeded.

The Golden Rule and Coaching

If your business is helping people directly and involves deep relationships, then this article might be final piece of business advice you will ever need.

Actually, it applies to all businesses. And all relationships (suppliers, clients, employees) within all businesses.

It’s this:

Follow the Golden Rule.

If Sunday school was a ways back, the Golden Rule is basically this: “Treat everyone how you would like to be treated.”

This is what happened for me.

A couple months ago, business was not quite right. Externally, everything looked fine.

I was making money. I was helping people. But something was missing.

Then it hit me. The obvious.

I wasn’t having fun with the marketing and sales. And that’s a very important value of mine. Having fun.

I followed the teachings of the marketing and sales gurus. But something in the process felt fake. Forced. “Unnatural.” And not that fun–even when I was signing clients for “big money”.

I stopped everything to take a mini-sabbatical. And I thought about why I wasn’t enjoying marketing and sales. There had to be a better way. Something could be fixed

Inspired by Rich Litvin, I started looking at ‘client acquisition’ 1 through a completely different lens.

What if I just started treating everyone related to my business exactly how I wanted to be treated? 

In essence: What if I just loved everyone?

That thought triggered tectonic shifts.

I let go of “sales models”. No more ‘building on common beliefs’ or ‘handling objections’ or remembering the “sales steps” in precise order.

I stopped all pressure and artificial scarcity. I abandoned knowing ‘how the sales conversation should go’. It felt vulnerable. I felt fear. But on another, deeper level, it felt right, as I embraced a more organic way of interacting.

Marketing and sales started being fun. Marketing transformed into “having fun to get people’s attention”.  Sales became ‘meeting new people and helping them‘.

Now, there were no more ‘problem’ contacts. I took time to ask every person what they needed and really listened. 2

Rather than try to ‘sell anyone’ a package (by ramping up their discomfort or other ‘tactics’), I just worked to solve their most immediate pain. I listened deeply and provided my very best thinking and support. 3

Instead of ‘aiming’ for a specific outcome of our conversation, I paid exquisite attention and stopped worrying about what I wanted.

Love and compassion begin professional relationships. Money enables them to continue.

All the sudden, we were both on the same side. We were one, working together to solve their problems.

No longer were we antagonistic ‘negotiation partners’ on ‘opposite sides of the table’ that I used ‘clever tactics’ to ‘get to sign up’ for something a lot more expensive than they might have planned on.

My Results

Here’s what happened:

1. My ‘potential client’ calendar completely filled up. I had 2-3 conversations with “people who I could help” 4 planned every day for a week in advance. This had never happened before. No more staring at my empty calendar and wondering how I was going to fill up the space.

2. I really enjoyed my conversations. Every time someone left, they were so grateful and happy, they treated me like their long-lost brother. There was no ‘sales pressure yuck’ taste in either my mouth or theirs. I usually knew within 5 minutes whether someone was a fit. And, I still spent focused energy and time helping as deeply as I could. I used to dread the conversations where I knew that they wouldn’t be hiring me, but I still had to ‘kill time’ listening to them. I felt like I was “giving my brilliance away” and that “I wasn’t being valued” if I didn’t get paid immediately. No more!

3. “Conversions” went down. I went from 80% ‘client conversions’ to perhaps 10%. I wasn’t even mentioning continuing to work with me to most people. And most people didn’t ask. They said “thank you!”. I said ‘you’re welcome!’ and they danced away, smiling.

They benefited from our short time together. I enjoyed it. And that is how most connections are meant to be. This was a good thing. It means that I am working long-term just with my optimal clients. It hasn’t cost me money. Quite the contrary. (See the last point on this list.)

4. My service quality increased dramatically. When I am focused on service, my intuition is turbocharged. I am not distracted by trying to ‘remember the steps in the sales process’. Nor am I thinking about how I was going to ‘overcome their objections’ to working with me during the conversation.

I am serving people from a place of deep caring and concern (which is who I actually am). I am giving them what they need.

5. My ‘scarcity mentality’ around money and potential clients disappeared. Since my calendar is always full, I realize that there is an inexhaustible supply of potential clients. Nobody ‘has’ to fit and ‘be the right one’. Everyone can be with me as they are, and we can follow the natural energy of the interaction.  And it feels great to serve them

6. My “perfect clients” sign. 5 Now, there is a special energy when I ‘click’ with a potential client. They feel that energy as well. We both know we are ‘meant’ for this relationship. Then we simply have an open conversation about how to make it happen.

7. Recommendations and referrals have gone through the roof. One recent conversation triggered five other conversations. I am simply present and helpful, and people are writing about it on their Facebook walls, telling their friends, and sending them to me. It’s a snowball effect.

You know how it is: most people go to a service provider of any kind because of word-of-mouth referrals. If you get referrals, building a business is easy. If you don’t, marketing becomes very challenging.

8. My client service level increased dramatically. I thought, “What do I really want to give my clients? What’s the best level of service I can provide?”

I thought about what they really wanted and needed, and designed a program based on what my income needs are and how much time I would like to spend 1:1 with my favorite clients. It ‘looked’ much more expensive, but I knew the time I would spend and the value my optimal clients would receive. I don’t have to ‘convince’ or ‘sell’ those who are a fit and who are looking for that level of value. I am guided by what ‘I would want’ as my own client.

I understand my value and bring 100% of myself to my client relationships.

Questions

Here’s a few questions I have been asked about my ‘new way’ of doing business (that is 2000+ years old!).

Q: Ok, I understand caring, but you can’t just spend 1000 hours with someone and not get paid, can you? Don’t people use you?
A: What I learned is that money is what allows relationships to continue. It doesn’t serve anyone if I ‘serve’ myself into starvation! I find that after about two hours we usually know whether we want to spend more time together or not. If we do, we have a conversation about that.

And then, they either write a check, or, in some cases, I will spend time coaching them through how to make the money part of our relationship work. Practically, this means that ‘completely free time’ ends at around four hours. There is a natural decision point that happens organically.

If I haven’t helped them find an obvious breakthrough in their lives in four hours, then I probably wouldn’t do so in 40 or 400 hours. Even if I do make that breakthrough, it may just not be meant for us to work intensively together. And we both seem to know that.

The key is that you are doing what will best serve the world and make others happy with your time. Since I have a coaching business, that means spending time coaching, regardless of whether or not I’m paid.

Paying clients simply get my best for longer. Because this is the best, most effective way to serve others.

Q: What was the hardest part of applying this ‘new way’ to your business?
A: The hardest part was ‘unlearning’ and letting go of things that formerly had worked OK. I had no guarantee that this would be effective. Indeed, I spent 20 hours in ‘free’ consultations before anyone expressed interest in my new, intensive program. I had no guarantee that anyone would decide to go deeper. And it took some faith to keep giving of myself from that perspective in the belief that ‘as you sow, so shall you reap’.

I believe that, whatever you want: love, connection, support–you should be giving that. So, I decided to radically apply the Golden Rule for as long as it took, and indeed, it does work.

Q: Why don’t you just give away your time permanently, if it feels so good?
A: To take another Bible quote: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”could do that, but I wouldn’t want my neighbor to run out money, not be able to pay rent or buy food. So why should I want that for me?

I know that there is abundance for those who are truly in service…there are plenty of people who can pay my clients for their true value. And allowing them to support me in living a powerful life is part of me loving them.

did actually give my sessions away for free for about a year with no program to sell. My experience was that, sure, I did a lot of great sessions. But it did not serve my clients as well long-term, because they didn’t have someone who could serve them from a position of abundance. Nor could I commit to serve them over time–I needed to find a way to eat!

We simply didn’t have the energy (in this case money) exchange that allowed the ‘circle of value’ to continue.

Q: So, I can just do this in my business and it will work, right?
A: I believe the principle is effective. Your application may be different. It may not be possible or of service to clients to give away your initial sessions.

You need to consider what would be best for people you work with and for you in the long term, and make changes accordingly.

It took me a few months to make all these changes. I’m still making them! Try to apply this in one area, see what happens, and that will give you confidence to apply this principle somewhere else as well.

Q: Was there a way this didn’t work for you?
A: When I left myself and my own needs out of the equation, it didn’t work. I have to love and take care of myself just like my clients. In fact, until I loved myself effectively, I couldn’t really love my clients how I wanted!

I had to do a lot of work around self-love and self-acceptance before I could even see the path of ‘as I want to be treated’ to apply it first to me and then to my clients.

Q: What else should I think about before doing this?
A: You must truly understand your own value and structure your business and prices accordingly. I actually arrived at my prices via deep meditation and prayer. They are connected to ‘what I really want to offer’ and my deepest soul. Inevitably, when it feels like I am ‘raising prices’ (which is seldom true, because my service multiplies more quickly than my prices have ever gone up), fear arises.

I’ve doubled my prices as a coach three times in one year.

I have one ‘package’, which is a year-long intensive program.

The result:

1) Enables me to work with just a few select clients as deeply as I want with powerful, transformative relationships 6

2) Enables me to spend the time and energy I need to with these clients while also taking time to ‘give back to everyone’ with my other projects (like writing this article).

Final Thoughts

I have begun applying the Golden Rule to every aspect of my business.

I ask: “How would like to be treated if I were on the other side?”

It’s a simple solution to almost every question.

This has transformed my coaching and every business process.

I would rather be listened to instead of “dazzled” with knowledge and facts, so I spend more time listening.

I want ‘high contact’ with my coach. So I offer that. I would like to be able to ask questions at any time, so I offer that.

want to be able to go to a free event to get to know a potential service provider before speaking 1:1. So I offer that.

Since wanted some idea of prices before having a conversation, I published mine.

Since want e-mail and telephone reminders to help me make decisions to benefit my business, I provide those (not as a sales tactic, but from an attitude of service).

love trying out potential service providers (accountants, lawyers, coaches) for free before I invest with them. I want to know they are competent and that we are a fit. So I offer that.

I create the content I want to read, watch, and listen to.

I want my coach to be honest rather than nice, so that’s what I provide.

want to know about my coach’s weaknesses, failures, and shortcomings, so I share mine.

So many of these steps look like ‘best practices’ and tactics. But I am no longer thinking of them that way. My heart is my guide, and that has made all the difference, even for the things that have stayed the same.

This feels like an incredibly natural way to do business. A perfect mix of “Sacred Sharing/Gift Economics” and “energy exchange”. I feel like I’m giving to the world freely and I am taken care of as well. 7

My income is rising faster than ever. My client relationships are deeper than they have ever been. My clients are moving forward more quickly than ever. They feel more supported. And I feel joy in their support.

My ability to ‘support my entire community’ is dramatically improving as well.

This is business in alignment with my soul. This is how I’ve always imagined relationships to be–and now I’m getting them in a place where I long thought that true, deep, transformational relationships couldn’t happen.

I’m happier than ever before.

I can only recommend using the Golden Rule to guide your life and business. It may just change everything for you as well.

I’ll update this post as my experiences with “The System” 😉 continue.

  1. What a horrible, dry term!
  2. Because I love it, of course, when people really listen to me with deep interest!
  3. You know, like how I would like to be treated!
  4. As opposed to potential clients.
  5. 100% of whom are new friends I deeply love.
  6. My clients hear from me just about every day.
  7. Lots of people want to live in a gift economy, but aren’t really giving their gifts. If you can’t or aren’t giving your gifts, it doesn’t matter how noble your thoughts are: people aren’t benefitting from them. If energy isn’t flowing from you, it has trouble flowing to you as well.