Asking for money is selfish, so is reaching out to someone with an agenda, in fact, most of what you need to do as a coach to be successful is selfish.
It isn’t true or at least it’s not the whole truth, but that won’t stop you from thinking it’s true. Even if you think far back in the part of your mind where you hide the thoughts that ‘keep you from manifesting what you want.’
THE TRUTH IS you’re better off admitting that you worry about being selfish as a coach, that you feel a bit guilty asking for money, and that you somehow think that generosity is the key to success
AND also sort of resent how generous you ‘have to be’ in order to be ‘successful.’ A resentment largely built on the obligation to be generous in order to be ‘good.’
Seem like a lot?
All of this mental chatter arises because of the bind you find yourself in as a coach. Specifically the bind between being Selfish and Generous. A bind which if you can learn to see, can have you be more powerful, successful, and actually more generous than you were before.
So let’s see if we can see it together.
Bind 2 – Selfish VS Generous
THE WAY WE THINK OF SELFISHNESS
At some point along your journey, you learned to wrap your desires in innocence.
It was ok to want to talk to someone . . . if you had no agenda. It was ok to ask someone out . . . if you already knew they liked you. It was ok to ask for money . . . if you were certain you could provide a result.
Your desire came with conditions that made them, ok, good, or acceptable.
When these conditions were met they achieved the level of generosity or selflessness. You were trustable, kind, thoughtful, and loving. Sometimes you called this authentic instead.
When these conditions weren’t met you were greedy, needy, and selfish. Sometimes you called this inauthentic or manipulative.
Once you had these rules you tried to live by them.
You tried to be a good person and avoid the ‘bad people’. You judged anyone who broke your rules as being selfish. You did this while you watched them make more money, date people you wanted to date, and become more successful than you.
You did this while being certain that their success was somehow empty or karmically bad and that it was better to be poor, tired, worn out, and secretly resentful so long as you got to be ‘innocent’ ‘generous’ and superior to those other people.
Here’s the trick, you try to be good for the same selfish reasons that other people try to be successful.
No one is perfectly un-self-interested. Or at least not very many people.
– You do actually have an agenda when you reach out to someone you’d like to coach.
– You do actually benefit when someone hires you as a coach.
– You do actually feel good about yourself when you make more money than other people around you.
You like to win, even if the way you imagine winning is by winning the ‘right’ way and not the ‘wrong’ way. But all too often you use the rightness of how to win as an excuse for why you’re not winning at all.
You see that’s the bind you’re in. The things you need to do in order to change people’s lives, to run a successful coaching business, to do ‘the work’ you worship like some sort of ancient god, requires you to be a bit selfish.
Or maybe I should say it requires you to own the selfishness you actually have.
Here’s the truth:
- My clients pay my rent.
- When they pay me I get to buy stuff I like.
- If they pay me more I get to buy more stuff.
Here’s more of the truth:
- What my clients pay me DOESN’T go to their rent.
- They get to buy LESS stuff they like.
- If they pay me more, they get to buy EVEN LESS stuff they like.
When someone hires you, in a way you win and they lose.
Yes, yes I know your mind doesn’t like this. You probably have so trained yourself to avoid this fact and hide it from your clients that the mentioning of it feels deeply uncomfortable.
Unless you’ve learned to wrap your desire in another form of innocence called justification.
Which is where you’re so clear you benefit others that paying you is a privilege.
Please, please get over yourself.
- You are not a charity.
- You are not a perfect solution.
- You are not the answer to anything.
- And paying you carries NO inherent significance or value.
HOW IT WORKS
The truth is if this wasn’t true coaching wouldn’t work.
If clients paid coaches with monopoly money or energetic units or something else without real value COACHING WOULDN’T WORK. If client’s give up some of the opportunity to buy stuff they like, paying you wouldn’t mean anything to them.
As the great Steve Chandler says, Money is a stand-in for commitment. You can complain about it, whine about it, not like it, but in our world, in the time we live in, money is the most powerful unit of commitment we have.
That’s the secret to this bind. You think that SELFISH and GENEROUS stand on two sides of a line. When in fact selfish and generous can either stand-alone or be cozied up with one another.
You can be selfish in your generosity, putting forth no real opportunity to commit and doing it so you can feel ‘good’ about how generous you are.
You can be purely selfish and think only of yourself, justifying that you ‘deserve’ what you’re getting.
You can be purely generous, truly giving from your heart and expecting nothing in return.
And MOST importantly you can be generous in your selfishness.
You can be clear that you get something out of giving something.
You can own the dark side of giving, of coaching, of offering a space for transformation.
You can free your clients and the receivers of your gifts from the obligation to make you feel ok about the benefit you’re receiving.
This is the escape to this bind. To OWN your selfishness. NOT by avoiding it and pretending it isn’t there. NOT by justifying it and deciding people paying you is a privilege you’re allowing them. But by acknowledging that having someone pay you for anything means you get something.
If you own it, if it becomes your responsibility to be with the desire and impact of your inherent and unavoidable selfishness, then you can be free and even more so your clients can be free.
Selling them coaching can be purely about what would serve them.
You can sit in the place of really wanting to work with them, while choosing to be fully unattached to them hiring you. You can have clear sales goals and numbers you need to hit and then create the money you declare you’re out to create, in order to live the life you want to live, while magically and simultaneously showing up with tremendous generosity and compassion with every person you talk to.
The pathway to purity is to get down in this human muck with the rest of us.
PS This is a part 2 of a 3 part series about the binds coaches find themselves in.
You can read part 1 here – https://samuraicoachingdojo.com/compromising-too-much/
Part 3 will be about the bind of flow and structure.
Thanks for reading this and thanks for being a coach. If you got something from this or you think I’m an idiot, shoot me an email/message or drop a comment below and let me know.