BRANDING YOUR BUSINESS

Why Trusting Yourself IS a Business Strategy…

We are all at our core deeply creative beings.  Cooking a meal, arranging a closet, taking photos, all of these are engaging our creativity.  Some of us live operate from logic (left-brain) and some of us live from our creative side (right brain), but regardless of what hemisphere your dominant one, we all have the ability to access our creativity and intuition

Most of the people I work with are operating from the  right side of the brain. They are coaches, healers and holistic practitioners whose main tool in their work is their intuition.  They access their deep knowing on a daily basis.  They trust their instincts and listen to their body signals.  

And yet, when we start working on their business together, they disconnect from those gifts and use their mind.  Instead of tapping into their intuition, they rack their brains to figure out what they should create, what to call their business, and what to name their programs instead of tuning into their heart and trusting what’s there to reveal itself.

At this point I’ve taken enough people through the process of translating the work they do into a powerful marketing message that truly expresses the work they were born to do that I can say without hesitation that the answer is always within.  The problem is the person doesn’t trust what they’re hearing or they’re trying to think through it and aren’t able to get out of their head to let what wants to come out, come out.

When you ignore the calling in your heart in favor of trying to “figure out” what you should do in your business, you’re missing out on having your work be fueled by your enthusiasm and passion.

And passion and enthusiasm are not only contagious, people want to be around them.

YOU CAN TRUST YOURSELF AND WHAT’S CALLING YOU.

You can follow the bread-crumb trail of desire.

As a matter of fact you should follow it.

When you tune into creating what delights you in your business, you’re aligning with a very powerful energy.  And that energy attracts people.

I happened to be going through one of my old journals and I found a questionnaire from one of the first coaching programs I was in–  The first question was:  

“Give a brief description of what you do and how you do it:”  

My answer on January 6th 2011 was this:

I am a passion alchemist.  I help people get clarity on “their right work” and build a sustainable business doing what they love.  Most of my focus is on helping holistic practitioners clarify what is special and unique about their service and translating that into compelling marketing messages, services, and products that pull in those people.”

In the ensuing years, I played around with a lot of different marketing messages–and when I say a lot, trust me there were dozens. I also broadened my focus and helped clients with strategy and social media.  But eventually ended up coming back to my original focus.

Here’s my elevator speech today:

I am a business alchemist.  I help coaches, healers and holistic practitioners to translate the work they do into marketing that attracts their ideal clients and products and services their audience will love.

Crazy that I had to take a circuitous route to come back to what was there all along.

“Coming up with a niche, branding and positioning for your business is about listening to your own voice, having the courage to do things your way and not following the herd.” – Me 

In the early stages of formulating your branding, trying to figure out what people want or what will sell is the recipe for getting stuck. I’ve seen this over and over again.

Keep in mind, I’m not talking about strategy here, because that’s an entirely different conversation, I’m just talking about getting clarity on who you want to help, what you want to help with and what words you use to describe that.

You have to offer what YOU want to offer the way you want to offer it to the group you feel called to work with.

How else would you be in alignment with your work?

THE MORE YOU CAN BE YOU–THE MORE POWERFUL YOU ARE

Think about it: when you can just be who you are it allows you to be in the flow of life.  There’s an ease that comes with that.

When I first started blogging, I wrote about what I thought my audience wanted to hear.  Unfortunately, it wasn’t what I wanted to say so blogging became a very tedious task that took way longer than it needed to.

Sometimes I dedicated an entire week to one blog post.  Not only did I dread the process, but it slowed down everything in my business.  And on top of that I rarely got anyone responding to it.

Gee, what a surprise.

But whenever I wrote a post that I felt was just too raw to go out or had a hard time hitting send, I was flooded with great feedback.

The people who have stepped out and dared to truly be themselves are considered innovators and have very loyal followings.

And you have it in you to do the same.

The big secret to getting your business totally stand out from everyone else’s is to be yourself–completely and unapologetically.

This is the exact topic I’ll be addressing in my upcoming FREE webinar: No Competition: How To Leverage Your Special Gift To Create A Business That Stands Out In The Crowd.

I’ll also be talking about branding, positioning, and niche–what the differences are, and why each of them are crucial to differentiating your business from all the others out there.

I’ll be devoting some of the call to Q&A so I hope you can join us live.
If not, there will be a recording.

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Quit Doing This, It’s Killing Your Business

by Cathy on February 28, 2014

I had a big shift in my business at the end of 2013 and because of it, I’ve had an influx of clients, and opportunities in the last three months without having to put in a lot of effort.

OK, I actually put in no effort.

No kidding.

So what WAS the shift?

In my last newsletter I talked about why taking the stance of fighting to get where you want to go is the last thing you want to do.

What’s at the core of what causes you to fight your way to what you want is being in resistance to where you are right now.

How do you know if you’re in resistance to your present circumstances

You feel like you haven’t gotten far enough with your business
You feel like your business isn’t big enough
You’re upset that you’re not making enough money

What if where you are right now in your life is the perfect place for you to be?

What if you disembarked the “more, bigger, better faster train” and allowed yourself to be OK in your present circumstances?

Even though where you are now isn’t where you want to end up.

“Acceptance is nothing more than making peace with where you are.” – Abraham-Hicks

There’s no doubt that you’ve done a lot to get to where you are right now.

In fact, you’ve already arrived…

There was a distance traveled, there was progress made, there was learning.

All good things.

And now here you are.

What if instead of anticipating your arrival at some future place that you imagine is so much better than this one, you decided you could unpack your bags, take of your shoes and get comfortable.

What if you stopped waiting for things to get better before you allowed yourself to exhale.

“Many people are afraid to make peace with where they are because they think that making peace with the situation will keep them stuck there.” – Abraham-Hicks

It’s actually the opposite.

Here’s what being OK with where you are now does for you:

It feels better-- and when you feel better, you have more of yourself available to give to your endeavors.

It allows clarity to emerge–resistance takes up brain space, when your head is clear, it allows you to access your wisdom and creativity.

Fighting with your circumstances saps your energy and depletes your reserves for doing what’s really important to you.

What you focus on increases–focus on what’s working in your business and how far you’ve already come instead of how far you still have to go.  Just doing this on a regular basis changed how I felt everyday and made a huge impact on the bottom line of my business.

When you’ve got an underlying current of frustration and dissatisfaction about where your business is, you miss the opportunities that are right in front of you–I could write a book about my experience with this topic.

Suffice to say, that I missed out on a lot of connections and opportunities  because I was so blinded by my unhappiness about where I was in my business.

Acceptance frees you from the places your stuck.

There’s only us,
there’s only this
forget regret
or life is yours to miss.
No other road
No other way.
No day but today.

There’s only us,
there’s only this
forget regret
or life is yours to miss.
No other road
No other way.
No day but today.- Jonathan Larsen- Rent

What’s your experience with resistance in your business?  What are you hoping will change so you can exhale?  Feel free to leave a comment!

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In the last couple of months I’ve come into contact with a few people who, when they heard that I’m a marketing coach responded with:  “Oh, I don’t want someone to teach me how to market my business, I want to find someone to do the marketing for me and then I just do my stuff.”

Deep down, don’t we all want to just be able to show up and do what we do best, and not have to worry about the marketing part?  

Of course.

Here’s the thing, when you provide a healing or helping service you never, ever, ever want to hand the reins of your marketing over to someone else.

If you’re providing a service then you need to be present in your marketing.

“Empty actions = empty results”

Note:  For those of you who say “I already know I need to market myself,” please continue reading anyway. You might be someone who is doing your marketing because you think you have to, but hating every minute of it.  We’ve all been there.

Marketing is the opportunity to create an ongoing relationship with a potential client.

What most people don’t realize is that in the helping/healing world you need to have an ongoing relationship with potential clients before they’ll buy from you.  It’s rare that someone would see something about your services once and then hire you.

The point of using social media, getting people on your list, and sending out a newsletter isn’t just so you can sell stuff–the point is  to create a connection with your potential clients.  

They need time to get to know you and how you think.  

They need to be sure that you are who you say you are.  

And for some people getting to the point where they feel safe enough to work with you can take anywhere from 1-2 years.  

“To be trusted is a greater compliment than being loved.”- George McDonald

Your marketing is there primarily to create trust and safety.

Another coach once said to me, “it seems like those who do the best work have the most trouble putting themselves out there–those who are great at promotion are often promoting something that’s mediocre.

I don’t know if I agree totally, but there’s definitely some truth to that.

When you do work that is deep and powerful, it can be very difficult to “raise your hand” to the world and say–here I am.

And yet, you want those who need your help to know you’re out there.

Which is why it’s even more important when you’re doing helping or healing work to form a relationship with those who are potential clients.

But when you go in with the assumption that people “aren’t going to get it” unless they experience it you’re robbing yourself of the opportunity to deepen your definition of what you do.

Every time you have to explain your work, you find new meaning.

And the better you get at talking about what you do, the more compelling it is for the person you’re talking to.

What If You Just Don’t Feel Comfortable With Putting Yourself Out There?

Then I would suggest having a one-on-one with the part of you that wants to hide so you can find out what that part is really needing.

Chances are it’s: assurance, validity, safety, or recognition.

The thing is, those qualities don’t come from outside–they’re feelings that you want to have about yourself in the world and the work you do.

You can give those things to yourself AND you must.

We’re so conditioned not to be full of ourselves–but stepping into your gifts and owning them is not the same thing as arrogance.

And if you really connect to what’s coming through you, it’s a very humbling experience.

Because now it’s not just about you, it’s about the work and who it touches.

Being in the business of transformation is tricky.

It requires faith in what is coming through you and it also requires that you’ve got enough clarity about what you do to articulate it in a way that makes sense for the people you want to help.

I have a free training coming up called:

No Competition–How To Create A Business That Stands Out From the Crowd

where I’ll be talking about how to come out from hiding under the umbrella of your service and talk about what you do in a way that differentiates you from everyone else who does the same thing.

One of the biggest issues keeping those in the coaching/healing space from being successful is the inability to articulate what they do so that their potential clients can connect to it.

If you’re not clear on how you’re work is different from everything else that’s out there or if you are clear on how you’re different, but don’t know how to express it, please join me for this free training.

How you talk about what you do has everything to do with how people respond to you.

And if they don’t understand how your work will help them with what they’re struggling with, they’ll never buy from you.

Click here to register for the FREE training: No Competition: How To Create A Busieness That Stands Out From the Crowd

Wednesday- March 19th from 7-8PM Eastern.

If you can’t join for the live training, a recording will be available afterward.

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Why You Need To Give Up The Fight

by Cathy on January 24, 2014

The other day one of my clients e-mailed me this:

I’ve been feeling bad about my business lately. I feel like there’s so much to know and no matter how much I learn, there’s always more.

Everywhere I look there’s someone who is doing it bigger, better, and faster than I am.

OK, so there it is.

So I’m telling myself that I am good enough. Smart enough. And that I can learn ANYTHING.

So screw you, fear. I am bigger than you. And I will kick ass while building my dream.

And I thought to myself–oh darling, you have no idea that trying to fight your way through this is SO not the right thing to do.

I want her to feel empowered–which is a very different energy than having power over.

When two forces collide, the victory goes to the one who yields. – Lao Tzu

Thinking that you’re going to fight your way to your dreams and then once you get there, exhale and be in this beautiful space that you’d always envisioned is an energetic impossibility.

You can’t have a horrible journey and wind up at a wonderful destination.

It sucks when you feel beaten down by your circumstances.  It sucks to feel afraid that you’re not going to get what you want in life.

why you need to give up the fight

 

So it seems like the right thing to do to push through it.

And I cannot tell you how many times I’ve done just that.

I’ll show them!

I will not be stopped.

and my old anthem:  Oh, really?  Just. Wait.

And I would gear up and get ready for the fight.

I accomplished a lot in my life through fighting and sheer force of will, but what nobody ever tells you is that it’s not sustainable.  Adrenaline works in fits and starts but it doesn’t have longevity.

Adrenaline will help you in the sprint, not the marathon.

When two forces collide, the victory goes to the one who yields. - Lao Tzu

Having to push through your fear requires force.

Which means everyday you have to pump yourself up for a fight as opposed to being empowered by passion, excitement, or enthusiasm.

Using force is the how we compensate for feeling powerless. - David Hawkins

Think about that one for a second…

And then think about this…

What would happen if instead of trying to fight the fear, you just approached it with curiosity and tried to find out what it needs from you.

What myth do you need to dispel about the situation?

What’s the toxic belief operating below the surface that’s not even true?

Why does where you are now feel safer than where you want to be?

On the other side of the fear is the opening to your deepest inspiration.

We have no reason to mistrust our world, for it is not against us.  Has it terrors, they are out terrors; has it abysses, those abysses belong to us; are dangers at hand, we must try to love them.

And if only we arrange our life according to that principle which counsels us that we must always hold to the difficult, then that which now still seems to us the most alien will become what we most trust and find most faithful.

How should we be able to forget those ancient myths that are at the beginning of all peoples, the myths about dragons that at the last moment turn into princesses; perhaps all the dragons of our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us once beautiful and brave.  Perhaps everything terrible is in its deepest being something helpless that wants help from us.” – From Letters To A Young Poet, Ranier Maria Rilke

What say you?  How do you deal with your fear?

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When Clarity Eludes You

January 13, 2014

I heard something very interesting the other day. “Clarity is an emotional state, not a mental state.” I have to be honest–I am in the business of connecting people to their clarity and I never actually thought about clarity as an emotional state.  But as soon as heard that sentence I thought, “of course, what […]

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The Most Important Thing to Be Thankful For

November 27, 2013

Happy almost Thanksgiving. I know everyone is focused on gratitude, in addition to the food of course  but I’d like to throw something out there for you to think about.. Being grateful for what you have in your life is wonderful, but it bypasses someone very important–you. Don’t miss this opportunity to acknowledge your own […]

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Tips For Staying Sane When You Launch A Program

November 1, 2013

I’m just getting back into the swing of things after a glorious week at Kripalu (that’s the view from my room) where I had the opportunity to be part of Ken Nelson and Lesli Lang’s week-long Facilitating Transformational Workshops program. The workshop was conducted around learning to meet three basic challenges for leaders: receiving full […]

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Why Your Business Doesn’t Need More Strategy

August 28, 2013

  Usually when people come to me in they’re in one of two places–pretty new to business with an idea of what they want to do, but not sure how that should play out into a business.  They may have a few things they love doing but no idea how they would all fit together.  […]

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Have You Figured Out Where YOU Fit In Your Business?

August 21, 2013

This is the thing I get to do with my clients that changes everything for them. My clients often come to me with a very detailed profile of who their ideal client is and what they’re looking for. And they’re spinning around and around trying to figure out how to create something that will appeal […]

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Is It an Uphill Battle, Or Are You In the Flow?

August 5, 2013

  I’ve been thinking about this concept so much lately–when to push, when to pull back, and when to lean in and trust that things will take care of themselves. Me, I’m a pusher.  I’m convinced I was a sled dog in my last life.  Most of what I’ve accomplished in my life has been […]

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