I was talking with a potential client yesterday and this is how the conversation went;
Little Miss Helpful (potential client) said to me: “I have a start up business. Actually, it’s my third start up business and I am really confident about its potential, but, (there was a long pause as she pushed everything she just said over to the far left) I have this business partner, well actually my love partner as well. He is really creative. He has all these amazing ideas that could all make great money and I really want to help him get some of them off the ground. He just gets stuck on the details.”
Me: “How many of these ideas has Mr Amazing turned into money?”
Little Miss Helpful: “None yet, but I am going to help him.”
She went on raving about Mr Amazing and all his talent and didn’t mention her sweet bud of a business for another 5 minutes. I asked her if Mr Amazing was aware that she was arranging coaching on his behalf and that maybe I should have this conversation with him. Little Miss Helpful explained that she wanted the coaching so that she could then help him with his ideas.
Me: “and what about your business, do you want help with building your business?”
Little Miss Helpful: “Yeah, but I can can just let it tick along for now and get help later.”
You see, in a previous life time, Little Miss Helpful was probably an animal rescue worker. I know the type. My neighbour is one of them. She takes in lost, abandoned animals and re-homes them or keeps them. She even bought a horse from the glue factory auctions. Big generous heart. Now Little Miss Helpful rescues people instead of animals and stops and starts her own business ventures to jump on to other peoples projects to help them out. From the story she told me, it sounds like these rescued people do very well from this arrangement. Then at some time the joint partnership dissolves and Little Miss Helpful goes and scrapes what remains of her business off the pavement like road kill.
And she is about to do it all over again.
“I know exactly how you can help Mr Amazing” I said to her “put your own oxygen mask on first!”
Little Miss Helpful has a great business that is already under-way and she has big plans for it that are all completely viable from where she stands right now. With some focus, implementation and sequencing she will be humming like a well oiled machine in less then 12 months and a book in the publishing mill.
So I told her, that when we started coaching together we would not be discussing any amazing ideas that her partner had. We would not be helping her partner with his million and one ideas. We were simply going to grow her business so that she was inspired, nourished and in the money flow. That would be her service to herself, to the people that sought her out to work with her and she would be helping Mr Amazing by letting him see how it is done. Little Miss Helpful sighed. “I feel lighter already. That is much easier and clearer.” she said. Me: “damn straight it is.”
So my question to you is this: Have you put on your oxygen mask first!