The other day during a coworking session at a local coffee shop, I ran into a dear, copywriting friend.
This friend is brilliant in helping people unearth their life stories onto the written page. She was lamenting about a particularly draining client whom she’d had for a number of months and how the work she was providing no longer resonated with her.
She felt dull. Not excited. And dread whenever she opened up this client’s work to begin editing.
She lamented that she’s GREAT at helping others take huge strides in their work and life, but when it comes to her own business – she feels stuck, unable to implement all the fantastic GOLDEN nuggets she gives her clients with her own life and work. Deep down she knew she was playing small, but didn’t know HOW to stop.
And oh man, could I totally relate!
When I look back on the past few years of my career as a yoga therapist, virtual assistant-turned-online business manager – and now, strategist, I had a pesky pattern of drawing in clients who:
- Couldn’t afford to work with me
- Didn’t pay me on time – OR
- Asked for or expected more work than we’d originally agreed upon
Basically, I had a habit of drawing in clients with scarcity mindsets. Clients who played small, sidestepped boundaries and often sabotaged their success with a host of limiting beliefs or lack of follow through.
And you wanna know something interesting? I was the common denominator in all those situations.
My own mindset was to blame. Because I believed I didn’t deserve to work with high-achieving, high-vibe, incredibly successful people – I didn’t. I ignored my own intuition when taking on a new client who presented with some “questionable” or unclear needs, telling myself that I couldn’t “afford” to turn someone down. And it ended up being a lackluster working relationship – me feeling dread every time I dug into their work. Just like my sweet copywriter friend and her client.
Playing small doesn’t have to be a hard habit to break.
Here are 3 secrets to help you stop playing small:
1. Hire a Coach
I know, I know – coaches are an investment. And you may be thinking, “I can’t afford that right now”. And you know what? Finances MAY BE TIGHT – but working with a kick-as*, reputable, high-integrity coach who will 1) call you on your sh*t, 2) brainstorm FANTASTIC business and growth opportunities you would’ve previously missed due to your own frustration, overwhelm and scarcity stuff and 3) validate, validate, VALIDATE you for the brilliant entrepreneur you are – will change the trajectory of your business.
I guarantee it. Cut expenses from another area of your life, put it on your miles credit card, believe that the money is on the way – whatever you have to do, find a way to work with an incredible coach.
The ROI is more than worth it.
2. Practice Mindset Affirmations Daily
Ten years ago when I lived in LA, I was a striving actress. I worked temp jobs, catered and waited tables – all to have the flexibility to go on coveted auditions, hopefully book a job – and eat like a Queen for a few months. I was MAYBE clearing $35K annually – which in the city of Angels, is nothing. I was broke, stressed out and swimming in student loan and credit card debt.
One day I scraped up my pennies to join a Financial Abundance for Actors course to finally turn my money situation around. One of the key components was practicing affirmations or “money mantras” daily. It may sound too woo-woo to work, but in one year I paid off all my credit card debt and was clearing $90K in income.
Need some inspo to get you going? Click below to grab my favorite list of money mantras. Print them out. Hang them up. Practice them DAILY. Especially when you slip back into scarcity and playing small.
3. Join an Accountability or Mastermind Group
There’s nothing quite like surrounding yourself with a group of like-minded, goal oriented people to lift you up when you inevitably hit a roadblock in your business or life. These are people you set goals with, share failures with, receive support from and brainstorm all those beautiful ideas swimming in that pretty little head of yours with.
Joining a solid group of motivated people can be a much needed anchor and provide even more much-needed sense of community on your entrepreneur journey (which can sometimes be a lonely one). A great accountability group doesn’t have to cost anything. If you’re not already plugged into your local entrepreneur community, a couple of good places to start are Meetup.com or searching reputable, high-vibe Facebook Groups for creatives and entrepreneurs. And if you’re not seeing anything that sparks your interest? Start your own!