Evolutionary Professional Blog

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How Do I Pace Myself Through the Evolutionary Sales Program?

[Listener Question]

It is unbelievable what I missed the first time through.

Yes. Most people do not believe me [or perhaps literally do not hear me] when I say to listen at least three times through all the way first because of what is missed by the human physiology/sense tools the first time--and even the second. Additionally, you are different, deeper, richer, or just plain have a new focus and so hear things differently--or perhaps for the first time, not having the ability to receive it/fit it into your linguistic or conceptual structures the last time you heard it--even after several listenings. I still re-listen to audio products I bought 10 years ago and hear them in ways that blow my mind now.

I do have one questions...how do I pace myself through the program. First time through was as you were releasing new episodes... now i have 16. I'm fighting back the urge to do them all at once.....

Thank you for this very important question. That depends on your own process and your internal processing. If you are a more kinesthetic person [talking slower, looking down a lot, feeling, touchy feely, perhaps], then you will get it more deeply, but it will take you longer to fully understand the scope. If you have good auditory digital recall, you may remember verbatim the first time--the guy who never studied in college, but always attended the lectures, then aces the final is one example of someone with good auditory digital processing. A visual person will often think they have it, because the understand it cognitively the first time--and very rapidly, but they do not have it deeply in their neurology and will lose or miss stuff thinking they already "know" it because they understood it rapidly. These people have the toughest time accepting that they understand it or cognize it, but have not necessarily "learned" it. When I say "learn" I do not mean remember or understand cognitively, I mean that they actually behave from the mindset, or that it is their patterned response--their new habit pattern or new emotional reaction or their "natural" way or predictable way of responding. On that note, a while back I wrote a piece to support this titled Insight and Integration. You can read it HERE. So...how do you pace yourself? I would make sure you listen to episodes 0 through 16 all the way through at least three times so that you can the model in your mind to such a degree that you can trouble shoot your own performance from an objective perspective. That requires you to mentally and conceptually hold the entire model in your mind. Do that all the way through. THEN go back slowly and go through it to do the exercises and play with the ideas and component parts individually. And remember--there is no inherent number of times to listen to it when you are "done". You are never done--there is just the asymptotic nature of Personal and Professional Evolution. The question is two what degree and in which contexts have I integrated it? Hope this helps!

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How to Avoid Wasting Marketing Dollars

Every successful business person is a marketer and a salesperson first. If you want to be successful, you should consider that as your primary organizing principle. If you want to thrive, rather than just survive, then your primary focus needs to be on generating business and leads—and then opening those relationships.

  • Are your marketing dollars working for you? How do you know?

One of the biggest mistakes a small businessperson can make is not being able to track their marketing dollars. That ad you placed—did it get any response or not? How do you know? That yellow page placement-is it increasing your business traffic? How do you know? Are your dollars well placed with the print advertising, TV spots, radio, or other form? How can you know? Did it even pay for itself? The key words you purchased on google or yahoo search—are they effective? Are they garnering traffic?

That person you are paying 10$ an hour to stand on a street corner and pass out fliers—are they even asking any questions, or just silently trying to thrust the paper into people’s hands to get rid of the fliers--bacause, you know, you pay them for how many they pass out, not how many leads you get from it.

What are you paying per lead generated with these methods? How do you track the efficacy of your advertisement and marketing and therefore make informed choices as to whether or not your dollars are well placed?

There are several ways:

  • Place a landing page.
    • In the age of the internet, you simply MUST have a “landing page”. A landing page is a web page accessible to only those who would have seen a specific marketing piece. An example would be: http://YOURDOMAIN.com/magazine-name-where-the-ad-is-placed.html and the like. In this way, you can look at the referral logs of your web traffic counter and see just how many hits and clicks you are getting as a result of a specific ad placement or marketing prong.
      • Site Meter is a good one, as is Google Analytics, and if you are running google adwords campaigns, you may want to have all of those resources in one place
    • You can also set up a specific toll-free number to take messages specific to that marketing piece
  • Test your ad copy. Just because you did not get as much response as you would have liked does not mean the venue in which you placed the ad is ineffective. It may be your ad copy, or often more importantly—the headline of the ad—that could be more effective.
  • Use a tracking code. If you have someone handing out fliers, put some sort of tracking code on the flier so you can use that number, or landing page, or phone number to track your dollars to leads ratio.

The worst example I have recently seen of wasted marketing dollars was for a chiropractic clinic. They had people handing out fliers—but you would never have known what it was for. The flier distributor was standing on a busy financial district street corner—a location where there were probably plenty of prospects who could use an adjustment. However the person hired to hand the fliers out was simply attempting to thrust them into people’s hands. No engagement. No rapport. No questions or offers. No return on invested marketing dollars.

How much were they being paid by the clinic? How much more effective could those marketing dollars have been if they simply asked: “would you like to relieve your stress more effectively?” or some variant, and ONLY hand the fliers to those who said yes. How many people who needed the service walked on by because they simply did not want an unknown piece of pink paper in their hands?

We will never know—and neither will the clinic that hired them. What we do know is that there were plenty of wasted marketing dollars in that marketing endeavor.

Be sure to avoid their mistakes. Stop flushing your marketing dollars down the toilet. Begin now by following the simple steps above to make the most of your marketing dollars.

Another huge mistake people make is marketing to themselves. What would motivate them is often not what would motivate their target market or their ideal clientele. Buut that is another article for another time.

In Service,

Jason

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How to Determine Your Fees and Get Paid What You Are Worth [Part 1]

One of the challenges I see so many coaches and solopreneurs struggle with is what they should charge for their services. Most do not know what they should charge. Many charge what they think they can get. Some charge whatever the next coach or practitioner charges. That is--"the going rate". Many charge what they would be willing to pay themselves. Most charge less than they are worth--while improving the lives of others dramatically.

But why? And what are the solutions to this travesty of value?

There are three primary reasons:

  • Mistakingly thinking they are actually trading time for money, and/or that their services are a commodity. A thing to purchase
  • Limiting beliefs; usually about themselves or the value they bring at their very core-and what they or their services are worth, what the prospective client would be willing to pay, or about money in general
  • A lack of sales skill; they do not know how to create accurate yet inspiring value perceptions in the prospective client that make the fees irrelevant or appear minimal in comparison to what they are getting through the service.

How the heck do you determine or set your rate?

What are your services and/or your offering actually worth?

There are two answers to "how do you determine the rate?", or "what should I charge?":

  • 20% more than you feel comfortable asking for
  • Whatever the market can bear: whatever you can consistently get in return for your services or product

I have never met a solopreneur or some other type of small business person, who was in their first 5 years in business, who I have not advised to raise their rates. After understanding what they do, I examined their rates, and told every single one of them to raise them about 10% to 20%. They were all dramatically undervalued and undervaluing their offering.

You Might Be as Well

There is fear around raising rates for most people. They think they will see less clients, and as a result, have trouble with their financial obligations, they fear people will not pay that rate, and ultimately they either lack confidence in themselves and their offering, or they themselves are making the mistake of confused value perceptions; they do not see the true value for themselves.

So especially if you are just starting out or you are in the first few years of building your business, as a general rule of thumb, you should add 10% to 20%. Not so much that you are anxious about it, but enough to expand your beliefs about your value.

What can the market bare? In other words, charge whatever people are willing to pay. Ultimately, the consumers of your services set the rates. If your conversion rates of prospects to clients is too low [and I say it is too low if you can not reasonably count on them signing up], then your rate may need to be adjusted down. However, where you look first, is your ability to sell or enroll others in your services. Be careful to look there first. Anyone can get better at anything. Lowering your rates serves no one--least of all the client.

Clients who pay more are more serious about the work--and they get more accomplished in a shorter period of time. AND you show up at an ever grater level of excellence at a higher rate, multiplying this exponentially.

This is why I do not allow friends or family to subsidize a clients work for them with me.

They can borrow the money--they will take that seriously--but they may not be gifted any number of sessions. It is for the clients own good. And in the case of their borrowing it, I usually conduct my due diligence in making sure my work with them relieves more stress than it creates, so if there are underlying issues around money in their relationship, I may still decline that, not wanting to exacerbate them.

Additionally, if you told me you were unable to get the rate you wanted, I would ask a few questions

  • Can't get it from whom? Which market? There is always someone somewhere who can afford you and will see the value in it. The higher the rates, the smaller the pool of prospective clients as a matter of financial and numerical fact, but you can get it from the right target market
  • How confident and relaxed are you when they review the agreement and see the fees? Do you communicate worth and confidence? Or do you communicate an opening for a negotiation? Do you communicate uncertainty? Or--god forbid--do you ask them if it is too high as you project your own unresolved issues around money onto them? [The client has enough of their own limitations--they do not need you to add yours]
  • Are you selling from vision and possibility and creating more accurate and inspiring value perceptions in the prospect--or are you trading time for money?
  • How effective are you at inspiring, enrolling, and re-framing concerns?
  • Where do you need to gain additional skill?

No matter how good you are, you can ALWAYS improve your sales and communication skills.

Those are the questions we explore first to be an Evolutionary Professional--to be constantly improving our efficacy at leveraging others beyond their limitations to have the life they dream of. There is always something you could have done to make a difference in the process. Examine that and only that. After that inquiry is exhausted, then you can indulge in examining how the client X,Y or Z. And it is, in fact, an egoic indulgence unless you are clarifying what a "qualified" prospect is.

You also need to look at what your intake process and your behavior is telling the client and yourself about what are you selling and offering? What are you offering? How clear are you when you communicate that? Do you communicate competence? Where do you come from or what platform do you stand on? What does your approach and your behavior presuppose as organizing principles. Not espoused beliefs or platitudes, but rather--integrated and aligned behavior.

One of the organizing principles I shared with my Apprentices and Evolutionary Professional clients and I will share with you now is this: You are not selling them on your service or product. It is a mistake to think so no only for your relationship to your own fees, the client's relationship to your fees--their investment--but also your level of fulfillment. If you try to sell them on how great your product or service is, you run the risk of some dynamics that will be set you up to less effective.

What you are selling them is a solution to a problem, or an access--a gateway--to the vision they have for themselves. Therefore:

Inspire them Towards Their Vision and Leverage Them Beyond Their Limitations; Never Try to Convince Them of the Value of You or Your Service

It often becomes a matter of convincing them that your product or service is worth XYZ for beginning and even journeyman or mid-level seasoned practitioners. Not only does that not serve the client, but it leaves you with results that are unpredictable. That is to say that if you have someone come in for an exploratory session, or an initial consultation, that you can not say with certainty they will sign up until they do. Wouldn't you rather be certain, in your mind, that they will? If you are trying to convince them, there is a 50/50 chance they may polarize against your points, and suddenly you are in a debate.

Do not sell the client on your products or services--guide them to selling themselves with more accurate and more visionary value perceptions. In your presentation, do no selling. In your presentation, demonstrate competence.

I have never had the debate or polarized communication with a client in an exploratory session. It has never happened to me in my business because of the Organizing Principle on bold above. I urge you for the sustainability of your business and for the benefit of your clients to try it on.

Additionally [and worse for the clients' experience] if you are trying to convince them, it had you be attached and has you be "jerky" and potentially jumping on a client's concern or objection immediately to try and address it--by telling them how great your product or service is, in whatever way you do that. Or worse, telling them [or saying something they can interpret as] their objection is invalid, in whatever way you do that.

This is yet another reason you must come from a platform of service and contribution. If you come from a place of just closing the deal to be making money, or relating to your clients and prospectives clients as objects to be moved around like chess pieces hoping to checkmate your financial obligations, you will behave differently than if you are coming from service and contribution. They will sense this on some level or another. They will not know what it is, or perhaps even how to describe it, but it will show up for them in some was a a lack of rapport, or safety, or trust in your motives. That is the very thing that no longer works in the 21st Century Marketplace.

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Who [or What] is Your God ::: Transcending Religiosity Through Spiral Dynamics

Who or What do You Worship? The purpose of this writing is to lay out different “gods” or objects of worship as an outgrowth and/or expression of the mimetic stage [meme codes within values spheres] of individuals and groups using a rough sketch of the Spiral Dynamics model.

Be forewarned ::: this is serious personal evolution geek stuff.

I am also going to make the unusual move of saying the very premise of what I am about to lay out is inaccurate. That’s right. I am beginning by saying I am wrong in my assertion that there is an individual relationship between mimetic stage and what one “worships”. Why? Because we experience / interpret through and emotionally react from our stage of development—and an individual can therefore have an experience of a particular spirituality or spiritual expression that is the same religion and same “god” as another at a radically different stage and therefore experience it differently. However, I have noticed cultural clumps that gives us enough evidence to make these generalizations below for the purpose of engaging in this thought experiment. To understand some of what I will say in this writing, one must have an at least basic grasp of the Spiral Dynamics model. There are two summaries attached for your downloading HEREHEREHERE and HEREHERE. Source ::: LINKLINKLINK. Review those before reading further.

My favorite way of representing Spiral Dynamics comes from Dr. Claire Graves himself: The memes are “degrees of activation of the nervous system”. These are not types of people but rather ways of thinking that are holarchically emergent within people. Having established all of the above as our foundation...

The status of the world today is precarious.

All we need to do is turn on the television or spend a day reading the New York Times, WaPo, The Wall Street Journal, Instapundit, or google news, to see some article about humans attempting to force their value system—often expressed through religiosity—onto others. Whether you are a Israeli having to worry about your existential existence while others in the name of Allah want to push you to the sea, or a secular humanist fearful of the Christian Right in America and some Nation States in Europe, or you are a secular Jew shaking your head at the expansion of settlements deeper into “Palestine”…or you were a New York Resident who watched the twin towers fall you are probably--to varying degrees—aware of and worried about religious fundamentalism and its perilous impact on the global web of life.

But there are other forms that are not as obvious and are more popularly accepted and advocated in today’s media and the latest social mimetic in vogue.

Regardless of which belief system you call your own, the dangers of religious fundamentalism are undeniable. In all likelihood, you just think it is the fundamentalism of the Other that is dangerous. But what of your own? You may or may not worship a traditional god, but there is a 98% chance you worship something—and have your own attachment and identification to it. Who or what do you worship? It may not be a god, a goddess, or a Great Spirit but it is something. Is it success, achievement, or the all-mighty dollar? Is it Gaia, Mother Earth, the biosphere? Is it the Nation State, government, or the democratic process? What do you surrender your mind to? What are you an activist for? Put your worship into? Become irrational over or about? Deny evidence to the contrary for/of? Once someone says anything is a settled matter—and are closed to debate or dialogue—and go so far as to say that those who do not agree should be tried and hanged, that, my friends, is religious fundamentalism regardless of the form of the deity. In fact, here is an organization advocating Nuremburg-Style Trials for Global Warming Skeptics.Nuremburg-Style Trials for Global Warming Skeptics. Lovely. Lovely example of fundamentalism, that is. Gaia as God/dess. Apparently we are going back to burning people at the stake for being heretics. Only the deity has changed.

 

Now that I have your attention, the rest of this piece will be a geek-out session of personal evolution and the emergent in spiral dynamics coupled with cultural clumps and the waves a particular god/dess or “deity” is most inclined towards.

Purple or “magic/mythic” will worship nature and the spirits in nature. The trees talk to Purple. So does the wind. They may worship the great Spirit or the Directions and their elements. Red worships power, respect, might, and most notably, blows things up in the name of Allah. Their “gods” may be the gang, the dictator, the Authoritarian State and so on. Blue/Conventional is likely to worship a Christian/Judeo god in a fundamentalist way—taking the bible or the Torah literally. Orange will worship the all-mighty dollar, success, status, and achievement, and/or hard science. Green will worship Gaia or Community or Multiculturalism and "Diversity" with great fervor and no regard for real-world results.

And thus ends Tier 1, where the “Momentous Leap”, as Dr Claire Graves called it, emerges and occurs. At Yellow, or Integral—the first stage in Tier 2, there is little or no “worship”, but rather an appreciation of all forms of worship and all metaphors [yes I said it] for the highest form of consciousness; what some refer to as “God” or Goddess”.

Having said all that, it is possible for someone to rise through these emergent stages in one of any of the religions or forms of worship listed above—but the way they interpret it moves from maniacal and fervent to literal to obedient to questioning to rejecting to appreciating it for its metaphorical value--yet having choice around it. And as one rises through those waves, stages, or levels of development in relationship to it, its grasp and its “Truth-ness” becomes less and less rigid and less and less fundamentalist and therefore less and less violent both physically and metaphorically. We hold our beliefs less rigidly and in relationship with them, our beliefs do not hold onto us quite so rigidly either. They lose their grip on us.

So…who—or what—do you worship? Each memetic stage in the evolution of values [another way of thinking about and representing SD] has its own fixation and spiritual expression. Is it God? Jehovah? Allah? Is it the Market? is it Gaia? Is it Community or the State?

Consider this ::: your view, while accurate and valid, is incomplete. It is partial. It must be. They all are. I look forward to a day when we can all truly appreciate the value and beauty in all beliefs while creating a stable and sustainable dialogue between all of them as we transcend our fundamentalism in all forms and create an Integral and integrated world.

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The Top 6 Mistakes Coaches and Practitioners Make [and Their Solutions] (Part 2)

We have already covered errors in philosophical grounding, lack of skill, and a failure of implementing a sustainable structure for your business--and for the scope of your clients' needs. What is next? More nuts and bolts rather than philosophical grounding or mindset:

Mistake #4: Having Only 1 Stream of Prospects

Most coaches and solo-preneurs rely on word of mouth. Word of mouth is critical. In the 21st Century marketplace there are hyper-empowered and talkative people. This is good for you. However, it is not enough. Make a decision now to take control--to be the locus of responsibility--for the success of your business. While word of mouth is critical, it is only one of at least three prospect streams the successful solo-preneur must establish for themselves. What are those three? Solution:
  • Formalized referral systems [two of them]
  • Speaking engagements and free evening talks
  • Word of mouth
The two formalized referral systems?
  • An affiliate program with a percentage or fee for referrals
  • Write a referral clause into your client contract--requiring two if the client is happy with your services. While you do not want to be heavy handed about this, it does set their intention and focuses their awareness on a more formal approach to referrals
The evening talks?
  • Make it explicit in your marketing AND in your introductory remarks that you are there for two reasons:
    • to provide value to their lives--first and foremost
    • to expose people to and offer an introduction to your services
Word of mouth?
  • Consider this a great backup and occasional unexpected icing on the cake when those unintentional or random referrals occur. And occur they will.
If you do this, and you consider them in this order of importance, you will always be in control of your flow of clients and prospects--and they will flow in. Your sustainable prosperity will follow.

Mistake #5: Failure to leverage contact points and the opportunity they hold

Solution: many
  • Consider any contact point you have with a prospect [be it an initial session, an email, or a phone call] an opportunity for you to leverage them beyond their current limitations emotionally or mentally--an opportunity for your to expand their world. An opportunity for you to be of service.
  • Do not give "free initial coaching sessions"
    • Many coaches and many prospects think it is beneficial to give away services or to experience the practitioner directly. I have never found this to be effective in a prosperous business. If you want to turn your practice into a business then offer a complimentary exploratory session--and consider it an information gathering session for you and a sales presentation for the prospect. Let them get a sense of you, but do not give them free coaching. You are not part of a buffet. You want them to commit to a more fulfilling experience. A full 3 course meal. Be sure to show them the menu and explain the dishes and presentation--be sure to demonstrate your competence, but be careful you are making sure your contact point is leveraged to its full potential--for their sake in finally having a better life--and for yours in creating a sustainable and prosperous business.
    • Have them make a decision one way or the other in that exploratory session. If you let them "think about it" then they will get less and less clear on what you presented, and therefore less and less clear on what it will make possible in their lives and their fear and limitations kick in. The very habit patters of the mind that they are coming to you to resolve take over. It is your duty to guide them to a choice in that session. Yes and no are both fine answers--but require an answer. I will often ask a prospect who wants to "think about it" if that is the thing that stops them elsewhere in their lives. That is usually all I have to say in those situations for them to sign the agreement in front of them.
    • Be respectful with their experience--set context--and make sure when you chat with them on the phone for the purpose of setting up the exploratory session that they are aware of the process--that they know you will clarify what they want, then explain your approach, and then if it is a fit--have them review a contract. Those contact points are critical for your guidance of the client to changing their lives.
  • When a client sends you an email raving about your contribution--or when they acknowledge you verbally communicating the difference you have made for them--ask them if you can quote them. Turn that acknowledgment into a testimonial for your marketing materials.
There are more examples I could give, but remember, if you want to have sustainable prosperity and truly be of service to a larger and larger portion of your community, and therefore be an agent of change rippling out to assist in creating a better global condition--consider every contact point an opportunity.

Mistake #6: Considering Your Service a Commodity

There is a reason I do not publish my rates. My services are not a commodity on the shelf to be price-shopped. And no one else does what I do, really. And consider that you offer something unique that no one else does. In discovering that you will not only feel better about your "fees", but you will also have take the first step in being able to communicate the value of your services to your clients and prospects in such a way that your fees seems insignificant and nearly irrelevant when measured against the value your service will bring to their lives. And really--just between you and me--do you really feel that a number, no matter how reasonable or how unreasonable it may seem communicates the scope and richness of the difference your service can provide in their lives? Unless you have nothing unique to offer--you do your prospects a disservice by buying into their mindset that they can price shop. I have never lost an opportunity or had a client not want to work with me as a result of this approach. In fact, it is one of the secrets of my success--selling from vision and value and having the money be a formality--but an afterthought.

Mistake #7: (Did I say 6?) I guess there is at least one more mistake:
"Healing" that which you need to resolve in your self and in your own life by healing others

I am going to say something harsh here and say that I consider it unethical--yes, "unethical" for coaches, therapist, or "healers" to work on the same issues with clients that they have not resolved within themselves. While you may still be able to provide solutions--at least be honest with your client that you have not handled it in your own life. And make a choice now to only provide services that you feel competent, resolved with, and apply to your self in your own life. If you are a relationship coach--have a great relationship. If you are a coach around self-esteem, have a well developed ego [in the positive and healthy sense]. If you are an addict who is still smoking, drinking, or doing drugs, do not counsel others on that. Do not look to heal your wounds through the wounds of others. There is a danger of projection, and even more so--how can you charge someone to solve something you have been unable to demonstrate as being solved in your own life? I hope this article helps you in your desire for sustainable prosperity.
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The Top 6 Mistakes Coaches and Practitioners Make [and Their Solutions] (Part 1)

It is amazing how many coaches, solopreneurs, massage therapists, lawyers, etc. are competent at what they do--yet suffer financially. They are doing good, but they are not doing well--that is, they are struggling financially, mentally, and emotionally.

 

There are reasons for this. I have identified the top 6 reasons--and their solutions-that I have found in my experience in my own business as well as observing those who still have a "practice".

 

The first 3 are presented to you below. The next three will be in Part 2 in a couple of weeks.

 

Mistake #1:  Thinking "Money and Spirituality are in Conflict"

 

For some, "capitalism" is a bad word. Which makes sense. "Capitalism" was a phrase coined by the biggest enemy of the free market and free enterprise to ever live--Karl Marx. Yet, we keep that inaccurate and pejorative moniker. We were taught for thousands of years that to profit was bad--and then this meme was punctuated by the evils of capitalism laid out by a failed mathematician who had no foresight into the services industry--never mind respect for private property and Natural Law and was therefore essentially a thief on a grand scale. Even though with the rise of capitalism in the mid-1800s, our standard of living has more than trebled, never mind that our life expectancy has doubled in a short time as a result...it...is...bad.

 

While there was a a time when one could only profit by exploitation and manipulation or by inheritance or plunder, this has not been accurate for nearly 300 years.

 

[Before commenting on this, please read my series of articles on Spiritual Capitalism, found here: Read First || Read Second || Read Third.]

 

Maybe we should consider throwing off the chains of thinking birthed centuries before the Enlightenment and even before the founding of this Country and came to a head--and have been proven to be inaccurate, ineffective, and fundamentally broken in the last Century.

 

The truth is, it is not only possible to come from service and contribution in a "for profit" environment--that is to live a purpose-filled life--but also to profit well from it and to live prosperously. It takes some personal work--being mindful of your thinking, cleaning out your unconscious imprints of guilt and shame, and to constantly be of service while having sufficient esteem for your self to recognize the value you are bringing to another's life and to have them provide that value monetarily in exchange. It takes a lack of attachment to "closing that deal" and being more focused on service and "opening relationships"--and much more.

 

Actually, I have found what can be provided to our clients lives is priceless to them. Fees are insignificant when weighed against what the work we do in their lives will make possible. It is not a commodity. It is a gateway to greater freedom and happiness. We can live a spiritually oriented life--and integrate free-market, service-based principles into that.

 

By doing so, we integrate our spiritual and our financial life. This frees us from guilt, shame, and allows us to flourish spiritually while prospering financially.

 

Mistake #2: Underdeveloped Skill: Sales, Marketing, and Ethical Influence

 

We have all had negative experience with sales people. Not sales professionals, but sales people--that is, people who want to "close a deal" rather than open a relationship. And most sales trainers teach techniques with little regard for a philosophical base or grounding. I do not support that.

 

I used to think sales was a dirty word. That was until I realized that until I could influence people to take action in their lives--leverage them beyond their limitations--I could never really do much good in the world. You can only be a positive agent for change if you can inspire others to move beyond their current thinking--the thinking that has them in their current life situation and has stopped them from being fully free and thriving.

 

Therefore--if you truly want to do good in the world, it becomes your duty--yes, your duty--to assist others in overcoming their limitations. That means learning to sell and market your services in a compelling way that comes from service and contribution while combining that with powerful tool of influence.

 

You must gain those skills if you want to make a difference and be prosperous.

 

While it may be hard to swallow at first [took me years to accept] you must be a sales person first--that is you must be able to enroll others in a vision--to live your purpose and prosper.

 

Mistake #3: A Lack of Structure: Service, Sustainability, and Packages

 

One you are coming from service and contribution, you begin to consider what would best serve the client. Most practitioners have session-by-session practices or monthly packages, but they do not have comprehensive packages that have stages and phases in them. How many people out there have dabbled here and dabbled there and never really bucked down and did the deep work to reveal greater depths within themselves? I have found most clients approach their personal development this way. "Well, I have tried this and I have tried that...", [but I never really got what I needed that was deeper].

 

The best thing you can do as a coach or a practitioner is to find a way to create a compelling 3-stage or 3-phase offering that allows the client to reveal greater and greater depths or to attain greater and greater heights. For a massage therapist, this may mean something like:

  • Healing
  • Activating
  • Opening
For a Coach it may mean something like:
  • Clarity
  • Tool Gathering/Education
  • Purpose/Action
I am just pulling these out of my pocket and tossing them out there. The point is that if you truly want to be of service to your clients, you will develop a phased program so that they finally make a deep commitment to themselves--and they finally achieve that elusive transformation--mentally, emotionally, and perhaps spiritually, they have been looking for for years. In the process, you create a sustainable practice with monthly payments coming in--and you get to then relax and be certain you are always acting with integrity and acting ethically. People only get slimy when they are desperate. You owe it to your clients to create a deep compelling offer that is only offered with integrity--and you owe it to your self to be prosperous as a purpose driven helper. Everyone wins. And wouldn't you like to be in a position to say to to a prospect you really do not want to work with? Of course you would. Wouldn't you like to always operate with full integrity and ethics intact coming from service and contribution? Of course you would. Wouldn't you like to provide comprehensive solutions to your clients so you can make a deep and lasting positive impact on their lives? [The next 3 top problems/errors and solutions will be handled in part 2]
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Financial Sustainability | Package Offerings

Because we are dedicated to helping coaches and practitioners reach "financial sustainability" as well as their clients maintaining "sustainability of change", nothing can be more important than putting together an offering for clients that is 3-dimensional and saying no to a session-by-session weekly commitment model.

What that means is designing a package where the offering is coherent, cogent, and comprehensive. Where the client is moving through stages or phases that logically fit together in a holarchical way--each stage building on the previous stage or phase.

But recently, nascent practitioners have been asking me essentially this questions: "what if I am not yet clear about my offering? How can I figure out what to offer them when I am so unclear yet about my deepest gifts?" I want to answer this very important question because I have noticed that requiring the apprentices to come up with a full offering can be overwhelming and does not assist them in professional evolution, but has them contract and regress.

So, backing up to more fundamental ways to build your practice when you are new:

  • Go ahead and work session by session at first. Schedule that single session
  • Let them know at the beginning of the session, that once they experience you, at the end of the session, you will offer them an opportunity to sign up for more--then drop the subject and focus on their needs and outcomes
    • This has them know what to expect and takes away any objection to you offering it--and gives the client a smoother more integrated experience
  • At the end of the session ask them what they liked about it
  • Ask them if they want more of that
  • Provided you were effective, they will say yes 
  • Offer them a package of 4 or 6 session with a discount if they buy them all now. For instance--buy 6 get 1 free or some such offer.

All too often I have seen practitioners say some version of "if they liked the work..." or worse, "if it is meant to be then they will ask for more".  Not necessarily. Sometimes they just need you to ask. Sometimes they get distracted. And even if true, I have found it is all too often a gussied-up way to avoid what is realling going on--fear and anxiety about selling--while pretending to have a "accept whatever happens" orientation to life.

Rarely, do I sense it is an authentic developmental stage they have reached.

Most importantly, if you truly want to be successful, you need to integrate the fact that no matter how good you are or effective at your craft, you are the locus of responsibility to make things happen.

That, and if you really care about your clients having permanent sustainable change you will offer them a package. Would you go to the gym once and expect to be able to compete in weight lifting? Would you go once and think you have reached a new level of fitness?

Hardly.

So it is with the muscles of your [and your clients'] internal experience. Help them get the exercise they need so they can attain a new level of mental and emotional fitness--a new baseline of success and fulfillment in their life, and you get financial sustainability in the process.  Together, we all create a better world.

Now that is a true win-win-win.

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How to Get Clients and Testimonials In 10 Days

After the last piece on how to get clients and testimonials the same day, I had a few people ask me how to get clients if they had few or none in the past. In other words: what is the second fastest way to get clients.

The short answer is: give a talk or an evening intro to your work.

However, there are several structures you will need to have in place to make this an effective event for client acquisition.

  • Give people no less than 10 days notice, but no more than 2 weeks notice about your event. This falls in the window of them making sure they schedule it, without being so far out in the future that they wait and forget.
  • Give a cap to how many people will be there [limit it to 8 or 10 or 12] and require an RSVP. This does several things:
    • It creates more urgency for them to RSVP
    • It gives you [if you are not used to speaking in front of a large group] a manageable-sized audience so you can become comfortable with the whole affair
    • It allows you to then publish how many spots are left for the evening in a follow up email [and really, 1 email is never enough and 4 is likely too many in 2 weeks]
  • Make sure you open with the fact that you are obviously there for 2 reasons [say this in the first 1 minute of your talk]:
    • To provide value such that their lives are improved whether you see each other again or not
    • "obviously" to market your services [at the end]
    • At the end, let them know what is available, but simply pass around an interest sheet that lets them opt in to a free exploratory session, or your email newsletter. Low commitment level makes it easier.
    • When you open in this manner it does 3 things:
      • it sets context and appropriately sets expectations
      • it is honest and direct and also takes away the objection they will have at the end that they were not expecting a sales pitch--tell them to expect it
      • gives them an opportunity to walk out if the do not want that experience
  • Bear in mind, you have 48 hours before the prospective clients lead begins to cool off--they become less clear on what they were inspired by or moved by to ask you to contact them
  • Do not waste your time or money on letting them take your card [or even having them, really, or brochures for that matter]. If you truly want to be of service, then get their permission to contact them and take the guess work and variables out of it.
  • If you are publishing to multiple lists/target markets, you can do this ever two weeks, however, if you are publishing the same type of event to the same list, be aware that what happens is that if you do it more that once ever 6 weeks they will begin to take you for granted--"Oh, s/he'll be doing this in a couple weeks...so" and they won't come.

I hope this makes a difference in your life and in your business today.

In Service,

Jason

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How to Get Clients and Testimonials Today

A question I hear often is this:

"What is the quickest way to get new clients."

It is a good question and since I have heard it so many times recently, I thought I would give you all the strategy I recommend. If you use this simple approach, you can get new clients and testimonials today.

1. Call up clients you have worked with in the past to see how they are doing.

2. When they start talking about what a great experience it was to work with you and the results they experienced in their life ask them if you can quote them on that. Type it up and send it to them for their approval. This takes the one obstacle out of the way for them--the time and energy it would take to write it up.

And of course ::: ALWAYS make sure they have approved of the testimonial before publishing it anywhere.

3. Once they have told you exactly how great it was to work with you ask them if they know anyone else who might enjoy that kind of experience. Of course they will.

4. Ask them to get that person's permission to give you their contact information. That way, you can be proactive and again, if you are truly being of service, you will take the variable out of the equation.

Which variable?

They may forget--they may lose your information. They may get scared. If you use a passive approach by waiting for them to call not only has their life not been served, but you have lost business. 

I can not count the number of times a prospective client told me that they had simply forgotten to call me and they were grateful I had called.

Four simple steps and you have either a testimonial, or a referral--or both. I hope this makes a difference in your business and in your life today.

In Service,

Jason
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On Ego Development | Self Esteem

Your Self Worth is a Settled Matter 

I wrote this to a client in an email and thought it may be useful for others to read:

The mountain we climb in Personal Evolution is a bit like a mirage while hiking/climbing a mountain. You could stop now and camp for the night--or say screw it and go back down the mountainside. You can also see there is a reachable summit. So you choose to go further--yet...when you reach what you thought would be the summit, there is yet another summit that materializes out of the mist. And this goes on forever. There is no omega point except when you choose to simply stop and rest. 

Each of us have that choice every day. For some, we still consciously choose to continue to deepen our depths--and plumb just behind them. There is no end or bottom to the depth, there are only unplumbed depths. For others, they have achieved a high enough peak, that there is no motivation--no real life reason--to climb the next.  And there are others I will not list in the interests of time. I choose--consciously--to evolve further when I should or must--that is when my business or financial or relational results are inhibited by some aspect of myself. Otherwise, I am pretty darned content with where I am at--BUT I still need to have constant attention on where I need to be for others in the context in which I want to move with greater velocity--or frankly, sometimes, ANY velocity.

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How to Determine Your Fees and Get Paid What You Are Worth [Part 2]

You must be genuinely coming from assisting them in creating the life they want. You must not appear attached--and hopefully you do the intra-personal work to actually BE unattached. Otherwise you will seem desperate. And in romance, politics, and in business, desperation is not an aphrodisiac.

Whatever the truth of your situation and concerns, you must act as if you do not need them to sign anything. The best way to do that is to put your concerns out of your head, and focus on theirs and theirs alone for at least the time you are together. They are not paying your bills.

You are in service of them. Continue to help people attain what they envision for themselves, and you will eventually have everything you could want--including spiritual fulfillment

The organizing principle and the effective method is simple: you are not trading time for money--you are not really selling a service. What you are selling the prospective client on is their vision for how their life could and will be. If they achieved their stated desired goals working with you, what would that be worth? It is probably priceless. It is certainly worth more than your fees. And that is why I refuse to discuss my rates for services before we meet. If I tell them a number--whether it is $30 or $300 dollars it means nothing. I do not know what they want in full yet--and neither do they until they meet and I ask extensive question--they do not really know what I do as I have not explained it yet. And last I heard there was no "going rate" for an Evolutionary Guide except the one I am currently charging. They certainly have not considered what that would make possible and what it is worth. I have yet to meet someone after nearly 200 clients that has considered it before I inquire specifically.

Not only do the numbers mean nothing at early stages of the process--worse, they are comparing it, in their mind, to commodities they could buy with that amount of money. Are they "worth" the same? Of course not. You can not get more love in your life and connectedness and intimacy by paying a car lease, or buying groceries, or a new suit. You can not improve your embodiment of your spirituality by buying a second house.

Yet that is what we encourage them to do by telling them a number up front.

The outcome is inevitable. They start to price shop.

If you truly want to be of service to them in improving their lives, it is irresponsible of you to discuss money or rates before you meet, AND at the appropriate place during that meeting; near the end of that exploratory session. After they have met you, after you have inquired about their desires and outcomes in full. After you have then explained what your approach is--and how it can assist them in getting what they want. You are not selling there--you are just demonstrating competence and establishing unimpeachable credibility. And finally, after you have addressed any questions they have about the process or your offering, but before they see the agreement and your rates.

It is this approach that has me with a consistently full business of one-on-one clients [over 20 a week] and a 98% success rate of converting prospects to clients.

With the one-one-one clients it is my general policy to only renew them under special circumstances. I am not just renewing them. That means I go through this process at least 3 or 4 times a month with a virtual stranger. It works. And I want you to be able to have that kind of confidence in your results--and to turn your practice into a business so that you can live a financially prosperous life as a result of your spiritual principles and living a purpose filled life. Rather than in spite of or in conflict with your spiritual life.

In nearly 5 years of being in this business full time, I have never once had this backfire on me--no one has ever declined to meet me for an exploratory as a result of this policy. I have twice had people in which were not financially qualified, but they were not financially qualified for anyone. And that is the risk I am willing to take for the benefits of this approach.

So HOW do you use this organizing principle?

  • Have a firm and unshakable resolve to not discuss your rates. Put it in your FAQ and declare it to the world on your web site. Then, keep your word about it
  • Discuss rates only at the appropriate time--after they say what it would make possible in their life, and right before they are handed the agreement
  • Use these formulations to ask that question:
    • "If you had XYZ, what would that possible in your life?
    • "Once we achieve all of that together in this program, what would that open up for you in
      • Your relationships
      • Your emotional life
      • Your professional life?
Follow up with this question several times: What else would it make possible?

Get three or 4 out. Unless they go to something universal and spiritual that brings tears to their eyes--in which case, stop right there, it will not get any better than that. Also--be transparent. I usually add, "and that is the context you hold, and the value you are weighing this agreement against".

The more you hear the mind-blowing answers people give, the less you are fearful about raising your rates for new clients--and finally getting paid what you are worth; getting paid more in alignment with the differences you are making in their lives.

Of course, this is one small component of the larger structures you will need to have in place to become more effective at new client acquisition, but it is an important one. I look forward to sharing more with you and being your Guide as you turn your practice into a business in the 21st Century Marketplace.

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The Love of Your Life | Your Infinite Valentine

What was your Valentine's Day experience like? Was it fulfilling? Unsatisfying? Beautiful? Lonely? Reflective? I know I am asking a lot of questions here, but was it what you hoped? Did you go out with the girls to commiserate? Go out with the guys to prowl? Did you stay at home pining for a lost love and reminiscing and crying? You can have someone who can fulfill you. Someone who will always support you. Someone who will always be there. Someone who matches your values, interests, and vision for the world. That person is also looking for you. They love you. The question is, how deeply are you related to them? How much do you believe in them? How much do you love them? How committed to them are you? Because, you see, your life partner is right around the corner. Walk around the corner into the bathroom and look in the mirror and pick one eye and tell them you love them unconditionally. Do it until tears well up in their eyes. Until they are convinced. I mean it. Do it now. Your happiness and the possibility of your fulfillment is entirely within you. You are the love of your life. The completion you are looking for. And how can you have a fulfilling relationship with another until you are fulfilled within yourself? You can not. Not really. A truly fulfilling relationship can happen when you no linger need another [person, thing, possession, acknowledgment, reflection, compliment, lover] to be happy. One you have achieved that stage of egoic expansion, then you can have true love. Overflowing love. Unattached yet commited love. Once you realize that the source of your fulfillment lies within...and you expewrience that...then you are truly free. Not that we should not seek connection and greater levels of fullness in our synergistic inter-dependency with others. Indeed, we will. AND we will do it once we are full within ourselves and our cup can overflow without the need to have our thirst and hunger sated by another equally un-whole-sum being. The path is harder. It is more qork. It is more rewarding and leads to more sustainable happiness--that you can share with others should you choose. They will feel freer a s well as they will sense you do not need them--and that give them freedom. Well, unless they are basing their bvalue on your need for them, in which case, refer them to this article and my site. Heh. I started I.D.E.A. to give people access to emotional freedom. To egoic stability and solidity. To give them choice. And I am a romantic. I have had epic poetic love where rose petals were scattered about on many occasions. I have my heart to others and almost lost my soul to them more than once.
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The Top 6 Mistakes Coaches and Practitioners Make [and Their Solutions] (Part 2)

We have already covered errors in philosophical grounding, lack of skill, and a failure of implementing a sustainable structurealready covered errors in philosophical grounding, lack of skill, and a failure of implementing a sustainable structure for your business--and for the scope of your clients' needs. What is next? More nuts and bolts rather than philosophical grounding or mindset:

Mistake: Having only 1 stream of prospects

Most coaches and solo-preneurs rely on word of mouth. Word of mouth is critical. In the 21st Century marketplace there are hyper-empowered and talkative people. This is good for you. However, it is not enough. Make a decision now to take control--to be the locus of responsibility--for the success of your business. While word of mouth is critical, it is only one of at least three prospect streams the successful solo-preneur must establish for themselves. What are those three? Solution:
  • Formalized referral systems [two of them]
  • Speaking engagements and free evening talks
  • Word of mouth
The two formalized referral systems?
  • An affiliate program with a percentage or fee for referrals
  • Write a referral clause into your client contract--requiring two if the client is happy with your services. While you do not want to be heavy handed about this, it does set their intention and focus their awareness on a more formal approach to referrals
The evening talks?
  • Make it explicit in your marketing AND in your introductory remarks that you are there for two reasons:
    • to provide value to their lives--first and foremost
    • to expose people to and offer an introduction to your services
Word of mouth?
  • Consider this a great backup and occasional unexpected icing on the cake when those unintentional or random referrals occur. And occur they will.
If you do this, and you consider them in this order of importance, you will always be in control of your flow of clients and prospects--and they will flow in. Your sustainable prosperity will follow.

Mistake: Failure to leverage contact points and the opportunity they hold

Solution: many
  • Consider any contact point you have with a prospect [be it an initial session, an email, or a phone call] an opportunity for you to leverage them beyond their current limitations emotionally or mentally--an opportunity for your to expand their world. An opportunity for you to be of service.
  • Do not give "free initial coaching sessions"
    • Many coaches and many prospects think it is beneficial to give away services or to experience the practitioner directly. I have never found this to be effective in a prosperous business. If you want to turn your practice into a business then offer a complimentary exploratory session--and consider it an information gathering session for you and a sales presentation for the prospect. Let them get a sense of you, but do not give them free coaching. You are not part of a buffet. You want them to commit to a more fulfilling experience. A full 3 course meal. Be sure to show them the menu and explain the dishes and presentation--be sure to demonstrate your competence, but be careful you are making sure your contact point is leveraged to its full potential--for their sake in finally having a better life--and for yours in creating a sustainable and prosperous business.
    • Have them make a decision one way or the other in that exploratory session. If you let them "think about it" then they will get less and less clear on what you presented, and therefore less and less clear on what it will make possible in their lives and their fear and limitations kick in. The very habit patters of the mind that they are coming to you to resolve take over. It is your duty to guide them to a choice in that session. Yes and no are both fine answers--but require an answer. I will often ask a prospect who wants to "think about it" if that is the thing that stops them elsewhere in their lives. That is usually all I have to say in those situations for them to sign the agreement in front of them.
    • Be respectful with their experience--set context--and make sure when you chat with them on the phone for the purpose of setting up the exploratory session that they are aware of the process--that they know you will clarify what they want, then explain your approach, and then if it is a fit--have them review a contract. Those contact points are critical for your guidance of the client to changing their lives.
  • When a client sends you an email raving about your contribution--or when they acknowledge you verbally communicating the difference you have made for them--ask them if you can quote them. Turn that acknowledgment into a testimonial for your marketing materials.
There are more examples I could give, but remember, if you want to have sustainable prosperity and truly be of service to a larger and larger portion of your community, and therefore be an agent of change rippling out to assist in creating a better global condition--consider every contact point an opportunity.

Mistake: Considering Your Service a Commodity

There is a reason I do not publish my rates. My services are not a commodity on the shelf to be price-shopped. And no one else does what I do, really. And consider that you offer something unique that no one else does. In discovering that you will not only feel better about your "fees", but you will also have take the first step in being able to communicate the value of your services to your clients and prospects in such a way that your fees seems insignificant and nearly irrelevant when measured against the value your service will bring to their lives. And really--just between you and me--do you really feel that a number, no matter how reasonable or how unreasonable it may seem communicates the scope and richness of the difference your service can provide in their lives? Unless you have nothing unique to offer--you do your prospects a disservice by buying into their mindset that they can price shop. I have never lost an opportunity or had a client not want to work with me as a result of this approach. In fact, it is one of the secrets of my success--selling from vision and value and having the money be a formality--but an afterthought.

Mistake #7: Did I say 6?

I guess there is at least one more: "Healing" that which you need to resolve in your self and in your own life by healing others

I am going to say something harsh here and say that I consider it unethical--yes, "unethical" for coaches, therapist, or "healers" to work on the same issues with clients that they have not resolved within themselves. While you may still be able to provide solutions--at least be honest with your client that you have not handled it in your own life. And make a choice now to only provide services that you feel competent, resolved with, and apply to your self in your own life. If you are a relationship coach--have a great relationship. If you are a coach around self-esteem, have a well developed ego [in the positive and healthy sense]. If you are an addict who is still smoking, drinking, or doing drugs, do not counsel others on that. Do not look to heal your wounds through the wounds of others. There is a danger of projection, and even more so--how can you charge someone to solve something you have been unable to demonstrate as being solved in your own life? I hope this article helps you in your desire for sustainable prosperitysustainable prosperity. Read, listen, learn, and thrive.
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The Top 6 Mistakes Coaches and Practitioners Make [and Their Solutions] (Part 1)

It is amazing how many coaches, solopreneurs, massage therapists, lawyers, etc. are competent at what they do--yet suffer financially. They are doing good, but they are not doing well--that is, they are struggling financially, mentally, and emotionally.

There are reasons for this. I have identified the top 6 reasons--and their solutions-that I have found in my experience in my own business as well as observing those who still have a "practice".

The first 3 are presented to you below. The next three will be in Part 2 in a couple of weeks.

A Lack of Integral Thinking: "Money and Spirituality are in Conflict"

For some, "capitalism" is a bad word. Which makes sense. "Capitalism" was a phrase coined by the biggest enemy of the free market and free enterprise to ever live--Karl Marx. Yet, we keep that inaccurate and pejorative moniker. We were taught for thousands of years that to profit was bad--and then this meme was punctuated by the evils of capitalism laid out by a failed mathematician who had no foresight into the services industry--never mind respect for private property and Natural Law and was therefore essentially a thief on a grand scale. Even though with the rise of capitalism in the mid-1800s, our standard of living has more than trebled, never mind that our life expectancy has doubled in a short time as a result...it...is...bad.

While there was a a time when one could only profit by exploitation and manipulation or by inheritance or plunder, this has not been accurate for nearly 300 years.

[Before commenting on this, please read my series of articles on Spiritual Capitalism, found here: Read FirstRead First || Read Second Read Second || Read ThirdRead Third.]

Maybe we should consider throwing off the chains of thinking birthed centuries before the Enlightenment and even before the founding of this Country and came to a head--and have been proven to be inaccurate, ineffective, and fundamentally broken in the last Century.

The truth is, it is not only possible to come from service and contribution in a "for profit" environment--that is to live a purpose-filled life--but also to profit well from it and to live prosperously. It takes some personal work--being mindful of your thinking, cleaning out your unconscious imprints of guilt and shame, and to constantly be of service while having sufficient esteem for your self to recognize the value you are bringing to another's life and to have them provide that value monetarily in exchange. It takes a lack of attachment to "closing that deal" and being more focused on service and "opening relationships"--and much more.

Actually, I have found what can be provided to our clients lives is priceless to them. Fees are insignificant when weighed against what the work we do in their lives will make possible. It is not a commodity. It is a gateway to greater freedom and happiness. We can live a spiritually oriented life--and integrate free-market, service-based principles into that.

By doing so, we integrate our spiritual and our financial life. This frees us from guilt, shame, and allows us to flourish spiritually while prospering financially.

Lack of Skill: Sales and Marketing

We have all had negative experience with sales people. Not sales professionals, but sales people--that is, people who want to "close a deal" rather than open a relationship. And most sales trainers teach techniques with little regard for a philosophical base or grounding. I do not support that.

I used to think sales was a dirty word. That was until I realized that until I could influence people to take action in their lives--leverage them beyond their limitations--I could never really do much good in the world. You can only be a positive agent for change if you can inspire others to move beyond their current thinking--the thinking that has them in their current life situation and has stopped them from being fully free and thriving.

Therefore--if you truly want to do good in the world, it becomes your duty--yes, your duty--to assist others in overcoming their limitations. That means learning to sell and market your services in a compelling way that comes from service and contribution while combining that with powerful tool of influence.

You must gain those skillsgain those skills if you want to make a difference and be prosperous.

While it may be hard to swallow at first [took me years to accept] you must be a sales person first--that is you must be able to enroll others in a vision--to live your purpose and prosper.

Error in Structure: Service, Sustainability, and Packages

One you are coming from service and contribution, you begin to consider what would best serve the client. Most practitioners have session-by-session practices or monthly packages, but they do not have comprehensive packages that have stages and phases in them. How many people out there have dabbled here and dabbled there and never really bucked down and did the deep work to reveal greater depths within themselves? I have found most clients approach their personal development this way. "Well, I have tried this and I have tried that...", [but I never really got what I needed that was deeper].

The best thing you can do as a coach or a practitioner is to find a way to create a compelling 3-stage or 3-phase offering that allows the client to reveal greater and greater depths or to attain greater and greater heights. For a massage therapist, this may mean something like:

  • Healing
  • Activating
  • Opening
For a Coach it may mean something like:
  • Clarity
  • Tool Gathering/Education
  • Purpose/Action
I am just pulling these out of my pocket and tossing them out there. The point is that if you truly want to be of service to your clients, you will develop a phased program so that they finally make a deep commitment to themselves--and they finally achieve that elusive transformation--mentally, emotionally, and perhaps spiritually, they have been looking for for years. In the process, you create a sustainable practice with monthly payments coming in--and you get to then relax and be certain you are always acting with integrity and acting ethically. People only get slimy when they are desperate. You owe it to your clients to create a deep compelling offer that is only offered with integrity--and you owe it to your self to be prosperous as a purpose driven helper. Everyone wins. And wouldn't you like to be in a position to say to to a prospect you really do not want to work with? Of course you would. Wouldn't you like to always operate with full integrity and ethics intact coming from service and contribution? Of course you would. Wouldn't you like to provide comprehensive solutions to your clients so you can make a deep and lasting positive impact on their lives? Of course you wouldOf course you would. [the next 3 top problems/errors and solutions will be handled in part 2part 2]
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Emotional Freedom Techniques [Part 2]

Be sure to read Part 1Part 1 here first.

Practical Steps to Emotional Freedom

Your practice, if you want to develop choice, facility, and ultimately, personal freedom and mastery over your own subjective experience, is the following: Make a decision right now to take 100% responsibility for your subjective experience. Every bit of it. Your interpretations, your feelings, your emotions, your beliefs—accept that 100% of your subjective experience is generated by…you. This will give you power and access to choice and freedom. It is also a spiritual and emotional truth with over 2600 years of testing, verification, and validation.  There are certainly things you will have to give up, self-righteousness and blame being to two big ones, but you have to decide if you want to be right, or be happy. If you want to be happy and free from the emotional matrix of self-generated misery...make the decision now. Having made that decision, then:
  1. Notice when you are agitated
  2. Notice how you are characterizing the events [is it descriptive, scientific, or is it a judgment or characterization?]
  3. Ask yourself what other possible interpretations there are [generate at least three alternative interpretations, making at least one fun] this will build in interpretive flexibility and assist you in taking on multiple perspectives--a critical faculty to build for your personal evolution
  4. Ask yourself what you know—scientifically, descriptively—and what you are making up or imagining—and separate the two
  5. Verify your interpretations directly with the party involved
In the unlikely event that your disempowering and/or negative interpretations are accurate, your work continues by being vigilant against the old habit patterns of the mind to then extrapolate out a generalized disempowering and/or possibly a “global” belief. I recommend conducting a sentence stem exercise to uncover some of your own beliefs—particularly the global or personally limiting beliefs. What are sentence stems and what are the guidelines for such an exercise? I am glad you asked. Some examples of sentence stems are as follows:
  • I am _________.
  • People are _________.
  • The world is _________.
  • I will never _________.
  • They always _________.
  • Men [are] _________.
  • Women [are] _________.
The guidelines for the exercise are to
  1. Finish the sentence in writing as many times as possible within 90 or 120 second—that is, 1.5 or 2 minutes.
  2. No less than 10 completions, no more than 20 is a useful range
  3. All answers are acceptable; no filtering, no reframing, no changing of any answers
  4. Let it flow—that is try to complete the exercise as much as possible without thinking about the answers.
  5. If they start to get “strange” or unexpected, you are on the right track.
  6. If they are all happy and shiny, redo the exercise focusing on the shadow side
What this exercise does is allows us to uncover beliefs from parts of ourselves we do not always allow to come through. Beliefs that are there are the time, and are running our lives; beliefs that may be limiting us, may be causing dis-ease and tension in our body, robbing us of possibility, connection, opportunity and prosperity, and ultimately health and well being. These beliefs, once we have scoured the world for enough “evidence” to support them become the glasses through which we view the world creating a clouded and disempowered experience-not to mention inherently inaccurate, at least in part. Begin to look for counter-examples. Notice your attachment to beliefs and how that only serves you short term, and stalls your personal evolution. Once again, as always, awareness is the gateway. Awareness of your sensations, is the first entry point. Are you agitated? Do you feel a sinking feeling in your stomach? Is there tension in your chest? Etc. From there, what are the thoughts and interpretations leading to those sensations? Are the labels you are attaching to those sensations even accurate? To what degree? How accurate are your interpretations of the events? Once verified, then ask, what did I make it mean? And then ask yourself, “what else could it mean?” The answers to that last question must be positive or empowering about yourself or about the world or about people. You get extra evolutionary bonus points if you do this even when you don’t have to—that is, when your anger is “justified” or your frustration is “understandable”. Be vigilant against this pitfall. While it may feel good in the moment--and there is a short-term pseudo-self-esteem boost [that is, pre-rational, stage 1 ego reenforcement], it does not serve your evolution in the long-term to indulge in the place of justification for your "negative" emotional states. Develop your awareness. Use the power of your mind to free yourself and to prosper. Prosper financially, emotionally, relationally, and spiritually.
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