Do you ever fall into bed, your brain still buzzing from the day, and realize that even though you worked your butt off, you didn’t really get anywhere?
You’re doing all the right things, but your client list isn’t growing at all, and you don’t know why.
You spend time away from your family and friends because you’re “swamped,” but when they ask how business is going, you’re embarrassed to admit that you’re struggling to make as much money as you hoped.
It can be wildly frustrating!
What if I told you I know exactly what’s going wrong for you and how to fix it?
I’ve discovered a curious phenomenon that occurs with nearly every business owner I work with. They’re working long, hard hours but have little (or nothing) to show for their efforts.
The good news is that this phenomenon is highly predictable and easily solvable (once you know what’s happening and why).
Today I’m going to tell you what happened to Sue, one of my most passionate, heart-centered clients, when she became afflicted by this phenomenon.
You’ll also learn how I helped her leap out of her stuckness and gain huge momentum in her business (including building her Facebook group to 11,000+ members!).
If you feel like you’re working too hard for the results you’re (not) getting, this one is for you!
Busy and Going Nowhere
I see it happen with my clients all the time.
Just when they think they’re in the clear—when they have a solid action plan to take their business to the next level—they lose momentum.
Getting clients is a struggle. Money feels tighter than ever. And their confidence starts to waver.
They think the problem is that they’re too busy.
But the real problem is that they’re focusing their energy on all the wrong things. They’re busy but not productive.
They’re working “behind the scenes,” constantly adjusting their websites, rewriting their offers, and jumping from idea to idea, instead of doing the work that actually gets them clients.
In Make It Work Online, it quickly becomes obvious which clients are afflicted by this phenomenon and which ones aren’t.
The ones who are stuck aren’t getting any clients; everyone else is quickly getting tons of clients.
I won’t sugarcoat it. Watching your peers take big business leaps while you’re feeling left behind flat-out sucks. You doubt yourself and wonder if you’ll ever make your business work.
Earlier this year, when this predictable scene played out in my Make It Work Online group—where some were getting clients like crazy and others were wildly frustrated that nothing was happening—I posted this:
(I post a lot of things—inspirational, encouraging, ass-kicking, supportive, coaching… the full gamut—in my MIWO groups based off what the group seems to needs that day.)
My little prompt quickly caused an enormous breakthrough for several women, and Sue Patterson was one of them.
She quickly responded with this:
I would NEVER consider myself a victim – and yet… so many of my behaviors are in that loop!!! Ignore, Deny, Rationalize, Resist – sheesh. What an eye-opener!
This explains why I don’t have clients. If I’m wasting energy rationalizing and resisting, then I’m not doing the client-getting activities. I was at a life coach’s event last night, and I told her how I’m just not doing the work.
I’m doing the behind the scenes work but not the REAL work, the work that will get me clients. NO program is going to do that FOR me.
I have to get out of this damn victim end of the loop.
WOW!! Talk about getting it. “Bravo, Sue!” I told her.
(I love how self-aware my clients are! That’s part of what makes working with them so much fun.)
To help you see if and how YOU fall into this loop, I recently reached out to Sue to ask her to elaborate on what happened for her so we could share it with you.
Here’s what she said. Maybe you can relate…
Sue saw where she had been making excuses and keeping herself “busy” but not productive:
Seeing myself in the victim loop was really surprising. I’m not typically a victim. But there were all my familiar friends: Ignore, Deny, Blame, Rationalize, Resist, and Hide. I completely lived in ALL of those categories of the Victim loop!
For example, I created a signup form for subscribers to comment on what was troubling them most, and they commented! But I wasn’t 100% sure what to do with those comments, so I let them sit there and pile up! I was IGNORING all my warm leads!
I RATIONALIZED how much time I spent on Facebook. I also allowed myself to get sucked into my big volunteer program. And I was totally DENYING how much time I spent on all of this and how much time I spent on all of that.
All of this allowed me to HIDE behind the scenes, skimming the surface and flitting from one project to another. I would make graphics, help people for free on social media, share inspiring quotes/etc., move on to something else. Those were easy safe things to do.
Once she realized what she had been doing, EVERYTHING shifted, nearly in an instant:
But when I saw in your post about what I had been doing, instead of whining about how much I wasn’t getting done, I shifted my focus to what steps I COULD do.
I started digging in and wiping out one project at a time! I completely flipped to the other side of the loop.
I recognized that I hadn’t created boundaries for uninterrupted work time. So I talked to my family, and they agreed I could have four uninterrupted hours each day. (There were other things, too, but this is what made the difference.)
I set a new schedule for myself. And because I knew it was hard for them to do this, I wanted to be sure I spent my four hours on true client-getting activities.
And then, holy cow, she got moving!
What happened after her breakthrough
Here’s how she describes her success in her own words:
I began writing my blog posts weekly. And instead of blogging about a scattered variety of topics, I used the copywriting techniques you taught me in Make It Work Online and focused on writing for my ideal clients. In January, with the pre-work from you, I knew I’d have to simply get started.
Next, I took my signup lists of 50-75 people from when I spoke at the conferences and started emailing them. Each week I wrote and the list grew. I’m now up to nearly 800 subscribers! Working at it consistently has totally worked!
I’ve also reached out to do guest blogs and live-streaming video shows, and several are scheduled.
I’ve picked up several short-term clients, 2 long-term clients and have a waiting list of 30 people who are interested in a program I’m creating for the fall.
Best of all, I’m finally making progress with moving in the right direction!
When You Make a Change, Everything Changes
Can you imagine…
- Writing your blog weekly and feeling totally confident about your topics
- Growing your list steadily by being featured on popular blogs and podcasts
- Interacting with prospects online and making genuine connections, turning onlookers into fans and fans into clients
… All while knowing that there are plenty of people who want to work with you, and all you have to do is tell them you exist!
So please, stop working behind the scenes and allowing yourself to get distracted by the tasks that help you stay safe. Instead, focus on taking the steps that will actually get you clients!
Then, guess what happens? Clients start coming in!
If you’re not totally sure what to focus on for getting clients, grab this cheat sheet, then come back for more client-getting tips next week. You’ll get a clear, actionable plan to help you get and stay on track, so you can get the results you want most.
Can You Relate to Sue?
After hearing how doing behind-the-scenes work can stop you from achieving your big dream of getting clients, tell me…
Are you hiding behind the scenes?
Can you relate to Sue’s story?
What insights did you have about your own business in reading about Sue’s experiences?
Fill me in below.