I’m a business coach in Australia. I love helping women break through confidence barriers and help them win clients.
I was an IT guy and I’m a husband and father of 7 children. You know, I never wanted to run a business. I had no idea how to price. I dreaded the idea of selling, and although I had lots of creative ideas for marketing, before i got to publish anything, I usually chickened out. Imposter syndrome was a big problem for me. Sure, I was really good at the IT stuff that I worked on, but all that business-y stuff: invoices and proposals and persuading people to buy – that all felt like a lot of work in areas that I didn’t know anything about (and didn’t want to learn). Mind you, I always wanted to be helping others somehow, and not just with technical stuff.
I started freelancing when rates were quite high, and somehow realized that I need to stop working through agencies and to see if I could get some direct clients. That kind of meant I was my own boss (which scared me, more than exciting me). But I did get a little brave with writing, and even tried to create some video courses. Arrgh! Video! I hated the sound of my voice. Even after starting a YouTube Channel, I never got any views.
Then, one day, I did something that I didn’t realize was going to be critically important: I moved the goalposts. I taught myself to see each little step, each post, each video, as a win. About the same time, I started helping others who were trying to run their own business, but were self-sabotaging. They were great at their craft or technical expertise, but they didn’t know how to break through the fear of failure. I knew exactly how to do that for the, gently, because I had done the same for myself (with lots of help from others).
Now, I LOVE my business, and I delight in helping people break through that self doubt quickly, and tap into their gifts. Many people start a business not out of any big desire to live the laptop lifestyle. For most of us, it’s because we want to feed our families. I know it can be really stressful. You’re worried how you’re going to find clients. You don’t know what to charge. I got to a point where I never opened my bank statements because I knew it was going to be bad news.
A lot of the challenge is to do with managing the fear, which can really stop us from making decisions. When I work with my clients, I see they have these fears, too, which is kind of a relief! But as I have been through some of those challenging times, it’s like I was given an earlybird ticket onto the Titanic! At least I got to find where the lifeboats were!
Being a cautious person, I’ve spent a lot of time reading business books, listening to podcasts and learning what I could. I thought that the more I could learn, the lower the risk for me. It didn’t work out that way at all, because I kept reading, and not implementing! One thing was really important for me: sharing what I’d learnt. As soon as I read a book, or listened to a podcast, I’d want to pass on something I’d picked up so others could benefit from it, without having to read that book or listen to the whole podcast episode. That proved to be very helpful to others, and I was able to apply my technical problem solving skills to non-technical problems. For example, a lot of people suffer from imposter syndrome – that feeling they’re a fraud or not good enough to be running a business.
When people used to tell me: “believe in yourself!” or “just do it! Don’t overthink it!”, that advice never worked for me. So now, I never tell it to others. In fact, I don’t tell people to step out of their comfort zone. Instead, I find some strength they already have within them (even if they don’t quite know it), and I show them how to use that ability to take the next right step.
I totally love coaching people in their business – not the account or finance side, but helping them to see the value they are able to bring to their clients. I love helping people break through confidence barriers, and I’m told I have a way of doing it without making them feel awkward.