I'm calling in all of the people, all of the people that are too nice. We think we're too nice, and we have a serious lack of boundaries that is actually damaging your business and your self-worth at the same time.
I think I'm a really nice person. I am not only people pleasing, but I really do want to help people. I'm here to serve people.
It's why I started my business. It's why I decided that I wanted to build a business that I want it to work for me. Unfortunately I took all of this stuff that I've learned over time, including things like the world doesn't revolve around you, or you're too loud, be quiet. And I rolled them up into this beautiful little messy ball of fuzz that basically told me that I just needed to be overly nice. So sometimes this shows up as lots of smiley faces. Sometimes this shows up as extra exclamation points because I really want to go out of my way to make sure that people understand my tone and that they know where I'm coming from.
On the other side of that is Paula. Who's very direct. Being direct means setting boundaries, and when I set those boundaries, when people are so used to me not doing that, it throws them off and I immediately retaliate.
Can you relate to this? What are some common things that you've been told? Is it that you're too nice? Is it that you're too kind? Is it that you're the strongest person in the room, or maybe you've been told some limiting things, right? Maybe it has been that the world doesn't always revolve around you or you're too this or you're too that.
So what winds up happening is to my own detriment, and I'm seeing this happen with my clients, which is why I want to talk to you about my own personal experience, is that we want to be nice. So how, as a business owner, do you transition from being nice to setting boundaries that allow you to feel in control and still feel like you're serving?
So the first thing is when you start a business, especially when people find you to be incredibly credible and very approachable, which is what we want people to think about us. What we really want. Like everyone in this community wants is community, right? We love community. We love people, but what happens is we often get people that drop into our DMS and they want to just pick our brain.
I have spent hours and hours and hours that I've never tracked, allowing other people to pick up my brain to serve them. But I served them so well that they didn't ever need to buy anything from me, or at least they thought. What I trained them to do was to continuously come back to me for free advice. If I open up my head, I'm in the DMS, somebody comes in, I'm serving them, I'm helping them. I give them some advice and they're like, "Hey, that's awesome." I give them a nugget, right? They're not getting all of me. And then they leave and they never come back again. I mean they miss out. I recognize that.
However, they continue to come back to me and I continue to serve them at some, in some capacity. Right. And so what I have started to do is to bring people back into this community, which feels really hard. Right? But we have these really awesome resources in this community, and I am not the only resource. I told somebody earlier today I might be the oldest person, but I am not the wisest. So having people in this community to bounce ideas off of is really important, which means that when I direct you back to the community, it sounds really evil of me to not answer your question, but it's because someone else in this space has the question that you are asking and isn't brave enough to ask. And I want to help as many people as I can.
I want you to get past this concept that you have to go spend hours in your DMS, serving all the people, right?
Send them back to the space that you created, ask them to use their voice and share, and I guarantee you all these other people that are going to have not only the same experience, but also might have some information to share too. They can share with others because what I don't want to happen in my community in particular or in my DMS is that I post something and that's the end, then people reply to it and I reply to them. I want people to share things here. That's a community. And all of a sudden, everybody in the community is commenting on it. A perfect example of that is the fun post that I did the other day, where I asked everyone who was the most famous celebrity they met that had nothing to do with my business.
It was complete curiosity, and the way people engaged in that post was so incredible. That was a community.
Let's talk about free consultations for a second. I believe in consultations. I think they're amazing, but discovery calls are not something I do anymore. If you want to learn what it's like to work with me there are a variety of ways to do that. And there are a variety of ways for people to learn how to work with you too. Heck I even have clients that will talk to you about their experience. So you don't even need to talk to me. And I'm sure that you have that same thing.
So I want you to be resourceful because here's what's happening. When people come into your DMS and they expect you to give them free advice constantly, one we're training them to continue to do it. And second, you are not supporting your own wellbeing.
You have a job to do, and you have paying clients, people that paid for your support. It is not fair for you to provide the same level of support to people in the DMS as you do for your paying clients. Now, I would not have told you that when I first started, because I want it to serve everyone, right? I want to serve everybody and that was my own limiting belief.
This was a very difficult concept for me, because what I learned in corporate was that when you do your job well, and you do it quickly, you fill the time that you have left with more. So what does that create?
One it creates anger and resentment in yourself because you've not set boundaries. You do not love yourself enough to set boundaries with people and disappoint them, but it's not about disappointing them. You're not helping them. You're not helping the right people because the right people are going to pay you. Or the right people are making plans to work with you or the right people respect you. But you have to model of respect for yourself as a business owner.
So if you are a very heart centered, value, purpose, mission driven leader, that is your job to set boundaries for yourself to model the behavior for your own clients.
Boundary setting is all about caring about yourself. So when you're not willing to do that, when you can't do that, you're encouraging the continued behavior from others. I will bet you, when you look back and you look at the data, that the data says those people never bought the thing from you. They're probably not even on your email list. So why are you serving them?
Why are we serving people that are never going to buy anything from us that don't really value our communities that we're creating?
That don't value the other people in this spaces that we're creating, who we value highly. What would happen if you took that energy that you're spending and put it back into your community or put it back into your business or better yet, put it back into yourself?
Don't spend time with someone thinking you have to convince them that you have something amazing, just that you do. You just do. You are not mean you are not difficult. You are not disappointing anyone.
So I encourage people that come to pick my brain to post that same question in the community so that other people who were too afraid to raise their hands, get the answer and are encouraged to make connections and have conversations on that thread. This is not mine. I created it. I'm just the host, this is our community.
Next, you're going to focus on your feelings and needs. You're going to be direct. You're going to tell these people, "Hey, I appreciate that you value me enough to ask my opinion, but I can't answer these questions in the DMS. And I encourage you to ask them in the community". Whether they do or not will tell you a lot about whether or not they're the person you want to work with.
When you're direct, here's what you're going to do. You're going to be specific and you are going to say it in a way where you suck all the emotion out of it, and you have no control over how they take it.
You only have control over yourself.
I'm not discouraging anybody ever to tell people to not message them. That's not the point. The point is to weed out the people that don't value you, you know, there's a lot in the industry about you creating value, you creating value. Right. But the value that you create needs to be mirrored back to yourself.
Now I wanted to share a resource that I created called Elevated Voices Academy™.
I want you to know that we work really hard on the foundational piece of your business. We talk a lot about our values and building a business based on you. This is not a cookie cutter program, you may think you've done this before, but you haven't. This is the program where you learn how to stand out online and use the power of your voice to attract ideal clients and build a sustainable business. I would love to have you be a part of that! Even if you're just curious, let's have the conversation. That's the first step. Take the first step. I'm here to support you!
If you have any questions, Jump on a call with me, for a no pressure chat.
And if you want to join a free community of amazing entrepreneurs who are figuring out this whole digital business thing just like you, I’ve created a Facebook community to help support your journey and connect you with likeminded people. My Facebook community, I Am Becoming..., is all about community and collaboration. I want you to be successful! That's the intent here.
Lastly, if this blog was just what you needed in your online business, please let me know by sharing it with your entrepreneur and coach friends!
Cheering you on!