by Certified Coach Alissa Gauger, MBA
Here are the most common words Financial Representatives (FRs) tell me when I ask them what they would like their practices to feel like:
Enjoyable (even fun!)
I have one client whose goal it is to make his practice feel “effortless.” Did your jaw just drop like mine did the first time I heard the word “effortless” and “financial practice” in the same sentence? Then read on.
Sadly, the most common words I hear when I ask FRs what it feels like right now to run their practices they tell me:
Full of fear and anxiety
Those last three words feel miles away from “effortless.” How do you get there?
1) Find a way to live more in the present moment. You might notice when your mind drifts to thoughts in the past that they are usually ones of regret and beating yourself up about the way you handled something and feeling strong negative emotions. When you find yourself in the future, the thoughts are often fearful and anxious—what will happen, how will I make it, am I going to be okay? Now, take a moment to come back to right now. That could be through noticing your breathing, mindfully doing anything involving your senses (eating, sipping water, observing something with curiosity, listening to the sounds around you, feeling the fabric of your suit, etc).
What do you notice you are feeling—right now—in the present moment? What is true right now? Observe if you feel any of the sensations of the past and future (regret, worry fear). Probably not! This is one way back to peace that you can use every day.
2) Stop fighting yourself. Most people spend a lot of time working on their weaknesses. In my experience you will have the least amount of forward momentum when your attention is on areas where you struggle. Instead, spend some time identifying your strengths. Where are you effortless already? In what moments do you find yourself losing track of time, smiling easily and feeling good? Do more of those things! Start to delegate as many of the areas where you are naturally weaker as soon as you can.
3) Take it one day at a time. I admire the amount of gusto I am hearing right now about how 2015 is going to be THE YEAR. Yes it will be! But what about TODAY? Once you have established all of your goals and dreams for 2015, put them into motion by finding the top three small daily tasks that add up to achieving the big goals. This year, don’t wait for May and December to kick yourself and your staff into an adrenaline-filled Project Issue frenzy of work mayhem! If each day, for example, you always set 2 new Fact Finders, always prospect when you have the opportunity and tee up every referral that you can by collaborating with the nominator, what will your year look like? Do the math using your ratios and knock your own socks off. The big year happens through the small steps. Focus on those and you will avoid the pattern of grinding/collapsing/recovering/grinding.
4) Take excellent care of yourself. You are a Ferrari. Why are you fueling up with cheap gasoline?! Try to eat nutritious meals and snacks, drink water, go to the bathroom when you need to go (many FRs suffer through too many meetings holding it), move your body, get plenty of rest and sleep and have some fun, too! Consider hiring a coach to help you clear away your mental roadblocks. They are costing you money! As an entrepreneur, these acts of self care will come back to you in the form of increased production. Check this out for details and ideas.
Perhaps right now “Effortless” feels like what Martha Beck-certified coaches call “Eagle Vision”—the big idea that you are heading toward in the distance. Rest assured that you can get there if you use “Mouse Vision” by taking a lot of small steps that add up to it, all the while looking up to check that you are still heading right at your Eagle Vision. You can do it. Others have journeyed to an effortless and peaceful way of being before you and are cheering you on. If you need a guide a long the way, ask for help! It’s all around you.