You will benefit in unimaginable ways if you hire a great business or life coach. I don’t care if you are trying to get rid of credit card debt, fix your marriage, or start saving for retirement. You can hire a great coach. And the good news is that the very best coaches will gladly work for you for free. No kidding.
Why you need a coach
As I see it, there are three situations when you need a coach:
1. Your life/business stinks and you are convinced you can’t do anything about it.
Well, you could be right, but you only know what you know. You might be surprised. Folks sometimes assume that their life or business situation is set and can’t be changed. Never assume something as dangerous as this. There are wonderful people out there who can help you transform your situation. They’re just waiting for you to ask.
Just the same, if you really felt that your situation couldn’t improve, you probably wouldn’t be reading this post. That means, by definition, you do have hope. That’s encouraging.
2. Your life/business stinks and you have no idea what to do about it.
If this describes you, you are the perfect candidate for a coach. Read on.
3. You are satisfied with your situation.
I’m a huge fan of finding satisfaction in life regardless of the circumstances. Things could always be worse. You are blessed if are content in life. But that doesn’t mean you should go live in a cave. Anyway, if you have read this far, you’ve told me that there are some elements of your life or business you’d like to change.
Be clear and specific about where you need help
When I started my career as a financial planner, I had absolutely no idea how to sell, how to do financial planning, or how to run a business. I also had no money and needed to get up to speed fast.
When I started my blog, I was also at a complete loss. I had zero technical skills, and no understanding on how to make any money blogging. I wasn’t even convinced I should have a blog.
Both these situations created tons of anxiety and I can’t stand living in anxiety. I knew that the only way I’d ever get clarity would be to ask help from people who have what I wanted. I was really clear and specific on what I wanted help on.
Pinpoint who can provide it
In both of the situations described above, I was clear on what I wanted. All I had to do was to find people who had it already.
That was easy. With regards to my financial planning career, I just looked within the firm that hired me. I observed the most successful people and I got to know as many as I could. I was looking for people who seemed to be interested in others, not just themselves. It didn’t take long to find lots of great candidates.
On the blog, I just threw myself out there. I commented on other blogs and made friends. Fortunately, in the personal finance blogging world, almost everyone is happy to help. That goes from the top bloggers to the newbies. Everyone seems to be delighted to lend a hand.
Hiring a coach for free is far better than paying a coach. Someone who joins your team without being compensated does so because she cares about you. She’ll go far beyond what a paid coach will do. OK, so how does someone come to care about you?
People care about you when they realize you care about them. You can’t fake this. You have to actually care. Express interest and mean it. Find ways to serve your would-be coach without being asked. Don’t manipulate. It won’t work. Find a place within yourself that really cares about this other person and express it by deeds.
Once you’ve established a caring relationship, ask your future coach for a 5 minute conversation. Tell them what you are struggling with and ask if they would be willing to help you. If you’ve done your homework, the answer will be ‘yes’ 90% of the time.
During your 5 minute talk, ask if they would be willing to take short calls from you from time to time. Don’t abuse your relationship. Everyone is busy, so make appointments and don’t call them randomly. Get to the point and respect your coach’s time whenever you call. At the end of each call, ask your coach what you can do for them. Even if she says there is nothing, look for ways to be helpful and deliver.
For example, let’s assume I ask you to help me understand how much money I need to retire, and you help me do the calculations because you’re a math wiz. Clearly, I can’t help you in the same area… But maybe you need to earn some extra money. I can put the word out and really go the extra mile to help you find those opportunities… Right?
Why your coach would love to help for free
Your coach got help along the way to success. Also, the most successful people in life love people. Look around and you’ll see it’s true. Let me ask you this: how do you feel when you know you’ve helped someone else? There isn’t a better feeling in the world, is there? That’s why your coach wants to help you (as long as you show that you care about them and respect their time).
Have many coaches and let some go
Over time, your coach will have taught you what you need to know. You’re needs will change and you might need the assistance of someone else. There is nothing wrong with that. Just remember to check in from time to time with your old coach. They care about you so let them know how you’re doing – and continue looking for ways to help them.
Be a coach
When all is said and done, you learn more as a teacher than a student. That’s another reason coaches love to help you. They learn too. When you get into a position to be helpful to others, take advantage of it. Look for opportunities to do so. When you see someone struggling, lend a hand. The only way you’ll ever get into that position is if you ask for help when you need it.