Good morning my lovely friend, how was your weekend? On Friday, RuRu my little ball of feisty fluff had an operation, and on Saturday I facilitated a Reiki 1 Training Day so I really enjoyed a day in the sun during this epic false spring that we’re having in Sydney.
My lovely friend Sarah Jensen asked me to share my top business tips in what was initially going to be a 5 minute conversation about boundaries, but invariably turned into a good 20 minute chat. My 6th Grade teacher had written that I have the ability to talk a leg off a chair on my report card, so no surprise there..
You can listen to Sarah and I chat over here, but if you’re pressed for time and prefer to skim, I’ve summarised 6 key points below. Sarah is an absolute sweetheart who hails from Adelaide, and as well as being a gorgeous soul, she’s a writer, speaker, online business coach and creator and host of the award winning Rock Your Goals workshops.
I always say that boundaries are funny old things. We only really need them after we’ve lost them – or when they haven’t been there when we’ve really needed them.
What is your greatest fear? That you wont be liked? That you’ll lose clients / business / face?
There was something circulating on social media recently that suggested something along the lines of: “If it scares you, than you should probably do it.”
And I have to say I DON’T agree with this.
If it scares you, it means you’re not comfortable and if you’re not relaxed, you’re going to feel off centre and are less likely to be coming from a heart centred place when it comes to making decisions.
Problems with boundaries usually stem from: whether or not you’re comfortable saying no.
Once you get clear about this, you can establish whether or not you’re plugged into the one third of the world that supports you.
You know about the a third, a third, a third rule right?
The idea behind this is that a third of the world will love you no matter what you do and will follow you wherever you will go.
The second third are indifferent towards you. They may or may not necessarily even remember your name or anything about you.
The last third will never like you, no matter what you do or what you say.
So wanting to be liked by everyone is really wasting your time, energy and spiritual resources on two thirds of the world that are never really going to give a downward dog about you in the first place.
Isn’t it liberating to know that you have less work to do and fewer people to please?
The importance of batching, blocking and buffering
Have we all become a slave to the imminent ‘ding’ that comes from one of your electrical devices? Are we measuring a successful admin day based on a small number of emails in our inbox?
Tim Ferriss, author of the 4 Hour Work, first introduced me to this concept. I now respond to my work messages in ‘batches’.
All email, voice and text enquiries now get answered at more or less the same time each day. It also means that all blog posts get written in the same batch, or in the same increment of time.
In order to do this successfully, I had to make peace with the fact that there will be times, days and sometimes even weeks where some unanswered messages will sit in my inbox.
Does it mean that I sometimes miss out on potential work opportunities? In my view, no: I believe that what is meant for you, will never go by you.
Do I really want a client who needs me at their beck and call, to always have access to me at the last minute? If that’s the case, chances are I wasn’t the right therapist or yoga teacher for them to begin with.
And am really living in alignment with my vision if I can’t manage to block out time for me, or for my creative projects?
Creativity can flow from being organised
It might sound counter productive, but having routines can make productivity and creativity come so much easier.
When Sarah feels organised and lists are completed, knows where she’s headed she can create space for creativity as she’s no longer trying to manage everything in her brain.
The buffer between clients gives you the time to acknowledge your work, shift your energy and be present.
If you’re so fixated on a strict time frame, there’s no room for life to unfold unexpectedly. Sometimes clients are early, sometimes they run late and if you’ve allocated a buffer, it means unexpected things that can disrupt your schedule don’t stress you.
3 clear and helpful communication tools and phrases
- where your actions match words so if you’re going to say it, you need to do it.
- where your tone is neutral. Are you freshly seething? Youre probably going to be explosive in some form of verbal vomit
If a situation with a colleague, client or partner has really upset you, that moment when you’re freshly seething is probably NOT the best time
- Keep it simple. Don’t over explain yourself or use too many words.
A good formula that works is to break it down into 2 sentences. Your boundary, and then a call to action. For example:
“I don’t use Facebook for business. Please refer to this link to make an appointment”
“My office hours are 10 – 6. M- F. I don’t respond to messages outside of these times.”
And I left the best til last:
“It seems our values aren’t aligned on this matter. Lets discuss it once we’ve both had time to think. Does Tuesday at noon suit you?”
There’s no emotion, there’s no over explanation, there’s no blaming.
Apologies – why do women do it more?
As a speaker (in any capacity), are you holding the space that matches who you are, or are you going against the grain of your natural personality?
Why is it trickier for women to set boundaries than their male counterparts?
Sarah and I both talked about how we used to start emails with “I’m sorry this has taken so long..”, or “I’m sorry I can’t make it.”
This is a big thing when it comes to refining your communication skills
You’re sending mixed messages to the universe when you’re apologizing for opportunities coming your way that aren’t aligned with your timing.
Sarah talks about how she works through this with her clients by finding alternatives to saying sorry, as well as bringing awareness to ‘when’ you’re apologizing out of habit.
If you’ve got a spare 20 minutes, here’s the link to our fabulous conversation. Otherwise, have a wonderful day love bug!
Til next time, Patty