This blog introduces you to my special brand of BIKE. I show you how to find your Best self, access your Inner strength, tune in to your Killer instincts, and use your Expressive voice. It's inspiring, spiritual, quirky, and it's all in your head. It's about ATTITUDE, not exercise, though that might be a side benefit.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The joy of bouncing back--a rant

It is not always easy to live a joyful life. Sometimes, life or people get in the way. Divorce. The death of a spouse. An illness. A setback of any kind can do you in -- at least, temporarily. And it's not just the big things that can threaten to take you down. More often than not, it's the little things. Maybe a dead battery in your car, your computer crashes, bad news in the mail.

You deal with it the best way you know how at the time, and it feels great when you notice, "Hey, I'm over that now."

I cannot count how many times that's happened to me. It just happened to me yesterday. A business coach called, wanting to discuss what she can do for me. By the end of our conversation, she literally said to me, "I don't think you're ready yet."

What she meant, or at least how I'm translating this was, You're not ready to pay me.

And she was right about that. I'm not. I'm actually working with a coach right now, someone who would not think to insult a potential client like that. And I'm certainly not going to pay someone who applies that kind of tactic on me to get business. I could tell it was a tactic by her next line: "I'll call you next week to see where you're at then." Oh really? Will I be ready then? That's what I was thinking at that point. And she went on -- too late -- to try to schmooze me.

How are you supposed to respond to a comment like that? I asked her, "What do you mean I'm not ready?" She replied something to the effect that I need to be willing to apply time and attention to the big picture. Was she kidding? Was she implying that I wasn't giving my own career enough thought? And she would know this how? She's not marketing my business, sending out the pitches, researching the ideas, reworking pitches that don't work, investigating new markets, contacting potential speaking venues, planning future workshops, meeting with designers about a new logo, vetting potential publishers for the new book, studying markets for the next assignment, following up on invoices, joining associations, volunteering for organizations, and on and on till I'm fretting over what's not working and reassessing everything to determine what does -- all of which is part of my big picture.

After that comment, she totally lost me. I mean, what had I just been telling her? I had shared my goals with her. I've written about them here several times. She gave me input that I already knew and had done. And yet, here she is, telling me I'm not applying time and attention to the process. And she was assessing this based on what? I think she could tell I wasn't willing to hire her on the spot; therefore, her response was to suggest I'm not ready.

When I finally got her off the phone, I called a friend to vent.

I told my friend that this woman (who she's aware of) spent so much time on the phone talking about herself and what she did with another client that I couldn't really get a word in edgewise. She kept talking over my attempt to question anything. I wrote down in my notebook the following word: LISTEN. In all caps. That's right. She wasn't listening. If someone wants to learn about you and your business and how they might be able to help, they need to listen. Instead, I just heard this woman spewing on about her work. I could tell she had no idea what I do or what my background is because the detail she was feeding me was stuff I'm aware of already. It was information I'd already determined for myself. It was information I've learned from my own associations and research and resourcefulness. Bored with her talk, I started to scroll through my emails.

As I've mentioned here, I am in the midst of re-branding. I've been working on the process on my own, and with someone I trust. It's exactly where I need to be right now. So why would I want to be ready to work with someone who has doesn't know me and yet is so quick to judge. At best, it's disconcerting. At worst, it's insulting.

Instead of waiting for her follow-up next week, I decided to let her know right away that we wouldn't make a good match. There's no need to follow up with that. It's best to move on. Maintaining joy in life also means you consciously decide to include people who support you in your efforts, and to get rid of the naysayers.

Now, tell me about a time someone underestimated or insulted you. How did you bounce back?


Tia Bach said...

Thanks for making me feel better. Since our novel was published, we've had marketing "gurus" coming out of the woodwork with big ideas and big $ signs. Mom and I are trying to figure it all out and on a limited budget (we want out $s to go as far as they can). One lady said, "you just don't seem to understand" in reference to what she could do for us. My reply, "I'm quite capable of understanding, but you don't seem to be hearing what I'm saying."

BIKE LADY said...

Tia, glad I could help. I knew I wasn't the only one who would have experienced something like this.

Jan said...

Hey Jackie, Sometimes anger is a good thing because when we rant in our head or on the page, the truth of our lives comes out. Our deepest thoughts and fears come out.

It sounds like the coach needs to work on her coaching skills. That's good you didn't take her bait.

BIKE LADY said...

Jan, it was ineffective bait, for sure. About the rant...sometimes, they're necessary. I see things more clearly once I write them down, yes, and sometimes it's not pretty. But still helpful.

Lisa said...

You go, girl! Any coach who won't let you get a word in edgewise doesn't sound like a coach worth having.

BIKE LADY said...

Lisa, it was weird to me. And clearly we just would not be a good fit.

Haley | Girl About the World said...

Good for you for recognizing that it wasn't a good fit and telling her right away. Whenever I'm underestimated, I just take the simple route: bounce back by proving myself through actions. That usually quiets the naysayers.

bookworm said...

Good for you! Life is too short for that kind of mind game.

Anjuli said...

It is good that you were firm enough to know what you needed and what you didn't certainly did not need that particular coach! How important it is to realize that not everyone is supposed to be 'clicking' into our lives!

Mama's always write said...

Man oh man I so admire your chutzpah to take control by calling her back and saying you weren't interested.

Great post! Listening is such an underused skill these days.

I think it was clear after your initial conversation that the one who wasn't 'ready' to do the important work was her.