The Supercoaches, Part One (#656)

A quick note from Michael:

To coincide with the publication of Supercoach, I’ve decided to feature the work of some of the coaches I talk about in the book. In each case, I’ll share what I consider to be some of the most transformative elements of their work. I will also do my best to make clear what is their material and what is my interpretation and experience of that material. Any misrepresentation is mine and mine alone…

When I first hired Steve Chandler to coach me several years ago, I was particularly interested in having a financial breakthrough. Although I had increased my income for the third year in a row and was already earning well into six figures, each year felt like “another miracle happened”.

The first question I remember him asking me was “Given what you’ve already achieved in your life and in your work, what would you most like to be different after we’ve finished working together?”

My answer was honest if perhaps a bit more colorful than he was expecting.

“I would like to get to the point,” I said, “where I can earn the money I want to earn each year without feeling like I need to pull another rabbit out of my butt!”

While it would be impossible for me to list the many things I learned from my time with Steve, there were a couple of key themes that we came back to again and again that I have found to be of use for nearly everyone I have talked to about them…

1. “Needy is creepy”

When I first started running seminars, I was surprised at how far people were willing to run themselves down, selling their best victim story in order to try to get a discount or free place on the event.

One person even asked me if I offered a “schizophrenic discount”, which in a moment of complete political incorrectness I responded to by insisting he would have to pay double if he wanted to attend.

The point isn’t to deny your suffering or the suffering of others – it’s to stop using it as a bargaining chip and badge of honor to present your unhappiest self to the world.

Whether we are looking for a romantic partner, a life insurance policy or a new dentist, there is nothing more off-putting and no redder flag than a level of neediness that says “please go out with me and buy this from me and let me do stuff for you and MAKE ME FEEL OK ABOUT MYSELF BECAUSE I REALLY DON’T!!!!”

The way past this is to realize that outside of oxygen, water and a bit of food from time to time, we don’t really need anything else that can’t be found or created from inside ourselves.

(And as Steve had to point out to me about 500 times before I finally heard him, “money is not oxygen”.)

Here’s a little thought experiment I learned from Jamie Smart the other day that brings this point home:

Imagine that everyone you speak to is secretly a multi-millionaire, and that if you can just say and do the right things around them, they will share some of their money with you.

When you’ve done that for a few moments or even a few minutes, stop and clear your mind before going on to part two…

Now, imagine that you are secretly a multi-millionaire, and when you meet people you are deciding whether or not to share some of your fortune with them.

When I first tried that out for myself, I recognized that in the first instance, they had something I wanted and I became increasingly more needy (and creepy) in my attempts to get it from them.

In the second instance, I was the one with something valuable to give – and in choosing who to offer it to, I was not looking for the most pathetic, hopeless victim in the room. I was looking for the person who would be able and willing to take what I have to offer and create something beautiful with it.

And this is perhaps the most valuable thing I began to realize in my time working with Steve – that the second I turned my attention from what I thought I needed to what gifts I could share and service I could render, not only did I become more attractive to my potential customers and clients, I no longer felt fear about talking with people about what I do and the difference if will make in their lives.

Which brings us to the second point…

2. The opposite of fear is fearless

Steve has written a book and created an online mastermind group dedicated to the creation of a fearless life. This is different from a courageous life in the sense that it isn’t based on the idea of “feeling the fear and doing it anyway.” It is based on the possibility of actually moving forward WITHOUT fear.

Here’s how I wrote about my understanding of fear and fearlessness in Feel Happy Now:

Having explored the fear of unhappiness for many years now, I’ve come to realize that while we can reduce our fear with techniques, dispute it with our minds and confront it with our actions, there is a simpler and much more difficult point of view:

99.9 per cent of fear isn’t really fear – it’s superstition.
We have been taught since we were little children that fear is necessary to keep us safe and to motivate us to move forward. In fact, it is a poor substitute for knowledge, intuition and inspiration.

Knowledge of what would happen if we were hit by a car is more than enough to get most of us to look both ways before we cross the street, even if we no longer hear our parents’ voices ringing in our ears to ‘stay back’. Our intuitive awareness of danger will let us know not to trust the smiling stranger even while our love/hate relationship with fear tries to confuse the issue. And the inspiration to live a life we love will carry us long after the adrenaline burst from fearing a life we hate has burned out.

Knowing this doesn’t mean you won’t ever feel fear again – old conditioning tends not to disappear overnight. It just means that you don’t have to be afraid.

I invite you to use whatever is going on in your life right now to begin a fear-less experiment:

For the next few days (or weeks, or even months), choose to live as if fear is completely unnecessary. When you are about to do something, ask yourself if it is coming from fear or not, and if it’s from fear, don’t do it. If you’re not sure what to do, ask yourself what you would do if you were not afraid and do that.

Be kind to yourself along the way – the fear-less path is not always an easy one to travel, especially at first. But after you’ve been on it for a while, it’s difficult to go back to living the other kind of life…

signature

Related Articles

The Supercoaches, Part Two (#657)

Sometimes I am asked if there was a turning point in my life or career – a time that I can look back to as the moment that everything changed for the better. While there are actually half a dozen or so of those transformative moments I can point to in my life over the past 20 years, the one that stands out when it comes to my career as a writer and coach happened back in 2003 while working with supercoaches Gay and Katie Hendricks.

What’s Your Hurry? (#762)

One of the more common reason coaches, salespeople, small business owners and solopreneurs give for wanting to hire me as a coach is to take their income up over seven figures – that is, to bring in over a million dollars a year in revenue, or better still in profits. The first question I have…

The Supercoaches, Part Four (#660)

To coincide with the publication of Supercoach, I’ve decided to feature the work of some of the coaches I talk about in the book. In each case, I’ll share what I consider to be some of the most transformative elements of their work. I will also do my best to make clear what is their material and what is my interpretation and experience of that material. Any misrepresentation is mine and mine alone…