We aren’t meant to build our businesses in isolation though when you start your private practice, you usually think about it just being you, in your office, handling the business. In reality, it takes a lot of support to help you get to a place of success so let’s look at who is on your team.
So how do you build up the support you need? First it’s time to ditch…
The negative voices. I’m not talking about the people who challenge you but never doubt your capability. I’m talking about the naysayers, those who don’t know your heart and who have nothing but caution and fear to spread around.
The competition. No one can compete with you because you are wholly unique. Anyone who is looking to compete and size you up needs to keep looking for someone else to engage with because you don’t have time for that.
The poor communicators. If there is anyone that isn’t communicating, clearly in a way you understand and any attempt to course correct has failed, move on. This can look like support people who are hard to reach, who communicate in a way that isn’t accessible to us (speak techie language or legalese without taking the time to translate), or people who don’t follow through on what they say they are going to do.
The opinionators. Many people have opinions about what you should or shouldn’t do, but they don’t know you and your situation intimately enough to really support you. This can come in the form of online forums and groups and is often free advice giving on the basis of “this worked for me so it will work for you.” Dynamic support is interested in you not in just applying their story as your own.
Then start to add back in...
The Cheerleader. You want a person who is absolutely your fan, who loves you and will be only encouraging through the ups and downs. They help shore up your resilience.
The Mentor. This is a person who inspires you and has a personal interest in your long term personal development. This is often a friend or a colleague who you trust.
The Clinical supervisor. This can be your mentor but it is a person with whom you can discuss your clinical work, no matter how many years you have been in the field. An opinion in a facebook group is not a sufficient replacement for this. You need a dynamic conversation where you can ethically and legally discuss your work and develop professionally.
The Counselor. Sometimes we need our own emotional support that is unlike a friend or mentor to help heal the past and rebuild our strengths.
The Coach. This is a person who helps you with your business strategy. It can be someone you learn from in many ways, whether it be from their training materials or a 1:1 relationship. They are not formulaic but give you the tools you need to master your business growth.
The CPA. An accountant can save you thousands in taxes. They are the experts on the laws in your region and can help you make good decisions for your financial health.
The Biller. If you take insurance, a biller can ensure you get reimbursement and handle all the organization and tracking of the insurance. The small outlay of cost will make up for the increase in recouped payments.
The Attorney. This is the person who can review your informed consent, contracts and other business paperwork (entity, 1099, w2 policies, etc). Sometimes the service of an attorney is included in the cost of your membership to an association. Be sure to take advantage of this protection.
The Robots. Literally, robots can help! Things like electronic health records, billing software, social media management software (meet edgar, grum, hootsuite) can save you time and energy for a tiny cost. That time you can spend making money in ways that only you can. You want to find technology that is intuitive or has customer support if you struggle with the tech.
The Outsourcer. Take the tasks that are necessary but not necessary for you to do and find people to help. This can look like someone to support you with your website design, SEO, copywriting, etc. Some of these you may absolutely be able to do and enjoy doing and that’s great. This isn’t something everyone must do. But if you struggle, have a budget for it, reach out for some help!
So how is your support team shaping up now? Just taking the time to assess can really change the way you go into your business building journey with the proper support you need. It’s about preparation which leads to confidence and good decision making.
If you are realizing you need more support, we are here to help. We still have some spots in the My Awesome Year program. Learn more, apply, and schedule your 15 minute discovery session today.
A letter to my future clients- from Miranda
I believe you are doing this work for a reason. It isn’t something that people just stumble into. Maybe, right now you feel a little out of alignment, and that is starting to make you question yourself. But, when you get still, and you are completely honest with yourself, you have a deep down knowing that you are supposed to be helping people.
Some days that knowledge is terrifying and overwhelming. Other times it feels incredibly peaceful and soul lifting. To know what you are supposed to be doing on this planet is huge.
“I know I want to help people… but I am not always sure exactly what that looks like…”
And yet, there are so many options and course corrections within that vision. Is what I want to do coaching? Is it psychotherapy? Am I supposed to be teaching? Why do I feel so burnt out? Do I need a break?
If you are feeling on (or over) the edge of burnout, you aren’t alone. I can’t tell you how many therapists have expectations of themselves that are truly super-human. They are working in multiple places, on multiple projects, saying yes to even more... They are spinning ALL the plates! I get it… I did that.. For years…
That is what success looks like in our work right? Private practice, teaching part-time, blog and coaching on the side, run a group of some kind, speaking a few times a year, help out on boards or committees… maybe even another part-time or full-time job for “benefits.” And that isn’t even remotely digging into personal or family obligations: marriage, dating, babies, health, faith…
And then your body starts shutting down. Maybe you even start to notice times when your normally open heart starts to feel a little numb or shut down. A few extra colds. A little extra back pain from all the sitting and driving. Invitations to social events feel a little overwhelming when you are tapped. And, then you start running into clients… while getting a drink, at church, at an open house, and it feels like too much to be “on” all the time- and you start to feel like you want just want a place of refuge.
This assessment and tidying up isn’t just about your business. It is about finding that sweet spot of balance and ease that allows you to keep doing this work for the long haul. It is about having enough still time to rest, rejuvenate, and even get clear about the next iteration of your business vision.
It is about creating space and time for the balance that we teach our clients. It is leaving after an amazing day of helping work with clients and not feeling completely shut-down. It is about not feeling financially vulnerable, even when you are seeing a full caseload. It is terrifying when your entire income is based on you having to be superhuman for the rest of your life.
Yes, running a business can be hard, but I promise it doesn’t have to be this hard. Being a business owner can be an incredibly rewarding experience that frees you up to do really impactful work with people from your highest and best (and yet still imperfect) self. This business is an extension of all of your stuff and is a relationship that can help you grow and develop your skills and confidence in so many areas of your life.
You are not alone. You don’t have to do this on your own. Asking for help is ok. You deserve to give yourself the gift of help or expertise in the areas that you need it. Do you believe that you are “worthy” of investment in yourself? Whether it is business coaching, an accountant, help with documentation, an assistant- you can create a business that allows for room to add people into your team for a time, or for the long haul so you are freed up to do what you do best.
I will come alongside you, hear your beautiful vision both the parts you speak and the unspoken part. I will dream big with you, while keeping a solid foundation of what is truly possible and realistic. I will delve deep into where you are and look for the places of ease where we can free up your time and energy. We will create an elegant plan that moves you towards your goals without burning you out, while practicing the life balance that you teach to your clients. I will respect you, challenge you, push you gently but firmly, teach you, and empower you to be the happy, balanced, successful helper that you know deep down you are meant to be.
A letter to my future clients - Kelly
Your business is just a piece of your purpose. There are many working parts to what will make your life whole and it doesn’t all have to hinge on your business success. But lately it has seemed like your whole life. You eat, breathe and sleep it but you can’t sustain.
It’s just not realistic anymore. Slowly it takes it toll on you emotionally, relationally, spiritually, and physically even though you are a go-getter, follow the rules and try to do all the things.
Deep inside, you are over it. You want to rebel a little and not do things like everyone else does because who you are and that isn’t what you signed up for to begin with.
Go back to your why. Go back to what made you take a leap that so many others dare not take. You have adventure and wisdom within your soul. But along the way it got a little muffled by all the noise of tasks, software, marketing strategies and people telling you what you should be doing.
I help my clients slow down and remember who they are. Then together we build up from there into what they need now and how best to ease into the growth without just cramming more stuff into the to do list for the sake of feeling busy.
Many of my clients have said their work with me has not only changed their business but transformed them personally. It’s a deep kind of work that I love - business therapy. And yes, there are tools and yes I teach and yes you will learn to do stuff you never thought you could do, even if you are tech challenged. You will come out stronger, clearer, confident, directed and more in love with not only what you create in the world, but what you develop within yourself.
Let me help you find that powerful person who had the strength to leap in the first place and together will find the courage to leap to the next level.