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Steve Mitten's Life And Business Coaching Notes - January 2008

 

Dear Friends,

I hope the new year finds you well and ready for the adventures ahead. This winter the Mitten family opted to bypass the usual festivities and head south for warmer climes.  The shot above is of a water-logged coconut, washed up on a deserted beach in the Sian Ka'an (where the sky is born in Mayan) bio reserve in the southern Yucatan, close to the Belize border. 

It is amazing how these durable seeds can float across oceans, endure drought and insect attract, only to pop out of their protective coating and spring to life when the conditions are just right to support their growth. 

All of life holds so much wisdom and potential. I hope 2008 will see all of your most precious dreams come to life. 

Enjoy,

Steve


NEWSLETTER CONTENTS

1) Opening To Grace 

2) Asking For the Business

3) Tiva.org 

4) Towards Mastery of Self, Coaching and Marketing - January's 6-Figure Practice Mentor Program 


1) Opening to More Grace In The New Year

Regular readers are familiar with my interest in the teachings of the world's great wisdom traditions. This is part of my passion to understand what best accelerates our mental, emotional, interpersonal, and spiritual growth.  

One of the consistent teachings of the great spiritual paths is that if a student wishes to progress they benefit from a good teacher, a set of inspired teachings, a community of fellow seekers to reinforce the learning, and a daily practice.  

The information revolution has given us all unprecedented access to the thoughts and lessons of many great teachers. There has been a virtual democratization of powerful, life-enhancing knowledge that in previous generations would only have been available to a select few. In fact if knowledge alone were sufficient, anyone with access to a good bookstore could obtain enough insights to become an incredibly enlightened human being. 

If it was only that simple.

Unfortunately, knowledge is not enough. Anyone seeking to materially elevate their level of consciousness faces the more daunting challenge of finding a daily practice (to systematically increase our awareness and move us past our current perceptions, beliefs, habits and attachments) and the support of a like minded community to keep the process of growth alive over the extended time frame real growth requires. 

Over the years I have studied a variety of spiritual paths believing there is something to learn from all the traditions. One of the paths I have become more and more interested in lately is yoga. 

These days, when you approach the rich 5000 year old tradition of yoga, one can be easily overwhelmed by the myriad of flavors. Currently there is a virtual smorgasbord of yoga being served up, attempting to connect with various segments of the market.  Some is excellent. Many are at best glorified callisthenics in expensive spandex.   

After doing my research and sampling over a dozen different offerings I settled on Anusara yoga. For me, Anusara (which in Sanskrit means "opening to grace") is a beautiful blend of what I am looking for in a spiritual practice. True yoga, after all, is about cultivating the union of body, mind and spirit. A true yoga practice is done in service of stilling the mind and shedding all the habits and illusions that stand between you and your connection to the divine. It is an art and a science of human transformation. (And for we busy-minded westerners, yoga - which is kind of a meditation in motion - is often an easier path to mindfulness than traditional meditation.) 

So with this background, here is what I wanted to share. 

In Anusara yoga, you are taught to pause momentarily before any movement, to open or soften the heart. This is done to create an opportunity for grace to come in, and to remind you that all action flows better when it comes from a place of inspiration.

If we simply focus on the "doing" without opening the heart, our practice (and in a broader context, our lives) can become forced or simply mechanical. 

I believe this is a great teaching, and one that I have been trying to take off the mat and out into my world. I start each day with an intention to open my heart and feel a greater connection to the divine and everyone in my life. As the day picks up speed and I notice my mind is becoming busy, I pause long enough to take a few breaths and remind myself to keep my heart open. And at the end of my workday, I stop again to attempt to keep my heart open.  

It is not easy. Stuff happens in every life that can sweep away our best intentions. However, whenever I catch myself getting stressed, the thought of opening my heart and reconnecting with my breath can restore perspective and renew me.  The more I practice this, the more the very thought of opening my heart reminds me to be more tolerant and generous in sharing love with the rest of the world. 

I don't know if you are currently in a place where you feel an abundance or deficit of love in your life.  

I do know that finding your own practice to regularly connect to and open your heart can be transformative. 

As you prepare for the a new year of living, I encourage you to explore ways you can more fully open your heart to the force of grace. 


"When you really let yourself feel Love, you feel a presence in your heart. 
From there you have a choice to brush it off or breathe it in. 
When you choose to breathe it in, it just glows like an ember glows when you blow on it. 
It fills you and takes you to heavenly heights.

- Dr. Trish Whynot


2) Asking for the Business 

Whether you are in the early stages of a coaching practice, hunting and gathering clients one at a time, or if you have established a niche and are attracting ideal clients in large numbers, you still have to ask for the business. 

Sometimes the most effective way of asking is the simplest.  In any introductory chat with a coaching prospect, you have an opportunity to learn who they are, and what they want to achieve through coaching. Once they have explored the best possible outcome from any coaching they might do with you, (so they are in touch with the payoff from this work) there are just two important points to weave into the conversation.

Firstly, I believe it is important to remind potential clients about the main reason for working with a coach.  The key competitive advantage of coaching, vis-ŗ-vis other modalities of learning and change, is that coaching stays in relationship with a client for enough time for their goals, dreams and intentions to actually become new behavior. This is not the case when a client simply reads a book or goes to a workshop. New knowledge that is not supported, is quickly forgotten, and thus rarely translates into a change in behavior. 

Therefore it is important to make the point that if a client is serious about making change, they need to create a support structure around them, to keep them connected to the importance of the change they are undertaking, and keep them focused and moving ahead with the various steps required.

Once a client is truly in touch with, and hopefully inspired by, the vision of what might be possible and once they recognize that unsupported change initiatives rarely succeed, (just like the hundreds of failed New Year's resolutions) they are ready to make a good decision on coaching.

At that stage you need only, in your own words and only if you mean it, say something to the effect, "I understand what you want to get out of any coaching you might do, and if you are really committed to making this change, I would love to work with you/be your coach."

If they are committed to change, a large percentage will say yes.


"The power of the heart that is the force behind every action."

- John Friend


3) Kiva.org

When you get a chance, please take a few moments to visit http://www.kiva.org/ 

This brilliant site is designed to help us, in the rich modern world, extend micro-loans to aspiring business owners in developing countries.   You can loan as little as $25. Most of the borrowers are women. The repayment rate is over 97% and it is incredibly uplifting to see how this simple process can raise an entire family out of poverty. 

If you are looking to make the world a little bit better this year, consider making an investment in Kiva on behalf of someone you love. 


"Let the beauty we love be what we do. 
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground."

 

- Rumi


4) Towards Mastery of Self, Coaching And Marketing  
   
(January's 6-Figure Practice Mentor Program starts January 15th. If you want to make a fundamental breakthrough in your practice
     next year, I invite you to check this program out. There are only a few seats left.)
 

THE 6-FIGURE PRACTICE MENTORING PROGRAM. 
(For serious Professional Coaches called to higher levels of success and impact.)

This program is designed to provide transformational (yet affordable) mentoring for serious coaches who are called to coach, and know extraordinary business success is best achieved by seeking new levels of mastery in self management, the coaching skills, and marketing know how. 

The 6-Figure Practice Mentor Program is focused on providing the support, information, inspiration, accountability, marketing best practices, advanced coaching skills and the personal development to help you get to a more enjoyable and rewarding place in your business and life. 

The program combines a monthly 1 to 1 call with me, a monthly group call, and weekly accountability calls with a small group.  This program generates rave reviews. Participants have told me they have really enjoyed the deeper work it permits. We cover all the advanced marketing info you need, but the big breakthroughs occur on the "being" side. (When we help you find that place where your passions and strengths meet the biggest unmet need in your market, magic happens.) 

The first large group call will be on Tuesday January 15th at 9 AM Pacific (12 noon EST, 11 AM CST, 10 AM MST, 5 PM U.K. Time, 6 PM Central European.)  After that, the monthly group call will be on the third Tuesday of the month at the same time of day.  Donít worry if you cannot make each of the large group calls.  All the monthly large group calls are recorded so you can listen to any you might miss in person. 

All the individual 1-1 mentoring calls with me, and your small group calls, can be arranged at mutually convenient times each month.

You can read all about the program, and see the latest testimonials at: http://www.acoach4u.com/lifecoachmentoringprogram.htm.  

If you believe this is a fit for you, please let me know, there are just a few spots left.

 


"We are all blind, or highly resistant, to the changes we would most benefit in making."


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Life Coach and Business Development Specialist Steve Mitten B.ApSc, CPCC, MCC helps individuals, professionals and leaders find their niche, be their best and make an impact.

Visit Steve at www.acoach4u.com


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