A young, local business owner came to see me about life coaching and goal setting. He’s worked hard, tirelessly, for the last two years to build his business to where it is now, nearly able to be sustained without the owner’s daily participation. As such, my client has been able to spend the last six months taking time off and enjoying the fruits of his labor. Now, comfortable and content with his current success, he’s finding that it’s harder to get up early in the morning, easier to go out to dinner, and yet also not as satisfying spending another day on the golf course. He remembers the days when his family and friends mocked his idea to start his own company. “You’re too young,” “It’s too hard,” “What if you fail?” He was doubly motivated to prove them all wrong. Today, his parents and peers congratulate him on his achievements to the point that even he isn’t sure why he shouldn’t just take it easy for a while longer. Underneath it all, though, there’s a gnawing, passionate force of bigger and better things. What if he can train his guys to do more of the work for him, hire better canvassers and managers to keep things running when he isn’t there? What if, with his current business otherwise handled, he can branch out to other ventures, like the real estate market. He has his entire future ahead of him and it seems as bright as he is willing to make it. Yes, it’s in the distance and within reach at the same time.
If only he would take a few hours a month to plan, set goals, get clear on his desires, and then have someone tough and inspiring to keep him on track? Searching on Yelp one day, he finds some ads for Life Coaches and asks for estimates. We speak briefly on the phone and schedule a session for the following Monday – way to start the week of right with your coach by your side to make the most out of your dreams! Together, they plan three simple goals, each in a critical area of his life: more sleep, cleaner diet, and one new future-oriented work task. By the end of the day, I text him a recap of his commitments. Mid-week, I send another text to see how he’s doing and to cheer him on.
The following Monday, when he’s back in my office, his disposition is cheerful, and his motivation seems to be increasing. He accomplished getting to sleep by his target time six out of seven nights. He and his girlfriend cooked dinner at home nearly every evening and they both started the book I recommended for inspirational reading. He did not get to the gym as he’d wanted or done the work task he’d chosen, but he felt great about the big influx of work his company had this week, more than usual for this time of year, which allowed him to let go of the guilt of not getting all of the goals done, in favor of the emotional flexibility he can give himself when priorities shift. Additionally, on the mindfulness front, he agreed, at my suggestion, that it’s time to let go of some of the guilting language that he’s been using on himself. We’re looking to the future now, and for next week, we have three more goals, new ones, in addition to sleeping and eating well, from which he’s already experiencing increased self-esteem that the new habits the prior week helped establish. Seems like we are both looking forward to what our next sessions will bring!