February 8, 2018
What does it really take to go from where you are, to where you want to be. Here is one bootcamper's journey.
"When I decided to give bootcamp a try, I thought it was to improve my business growth. While my business has changed, it's really me, the business owner that has grown.
When I did my bootcamp interview with Miranda, I was very burned out and frustrated with marketing. While I still loved being my own boss, my business was stagnant. I had maintained a practice through the recession and having children, but my income had not grown in 15 years.
When I started my business in 2001, my coach taught me how to get on insurance panels and the group I joined talked to me about getting on more panels. I had no idea that anyone practiced and got paid their full fee. I had a successful part-time practice taking insurance for many years, but then my children became school-age and I was ready to devote more energy to my business.
I tried everything I read about. I invested more and more time and energy with no return on my investment. All of this overdoing was leading to greater burnout, exhaustion, and self-doubt. I was tired of working so hard and not reaching my income goals. So I decided to take a risk and trust some coaches from California that I had been following from afar. I sold a piano we didn't use anymore in order to pay for bootcamp. I was committed but tired.
At the time, I was working 3 jobs. I had a lot of doubt that anything would help, but hoped bootcamp would help me at the minimum increase my client referrals. But what I really wanted was clarity on what was working and not working in my marketing. I wanted to stop spinning my wheels so I could use my time wisely and even reserve some energy for myself.
The journey hasn't been easy as I've had to repeatedly face things that were hard to face like a negative past review on Google, a high client drop out rate, not ending sessions on time, being too lenient on my missed appointment policy, etc. But I've also been determined to face my fears and refine my vision of what I want my practice to look like.
I've been gradually withdrawing my contracts with insurance and EAP companies for the past 9 months. I've gone from taking almost all of the insurance plans in my area to taking one. And almost immediately, I went from relying on insurance for referrals to receiving more referrals from my own marketing. My website now gets more than 700 visitors and over 2500 pageviews per month. The fact that I could rely on myself to get clients was quite empowering.
While there is still variability in monthly referrals, I now know what works for me so I don't have to do it all. After the first round of bootcamp, I was still trying to do it all and I wasn't sleeping well. Slowly I've realized that I have valued my business more than I valued myself. That takeaway has been priceless. Even if my income never increases, I am valuable.
When I realized that I was part of the problem, not that I was the problem, things started to shift. That is, taking insurance and not consistently enforcing my policies was getting in the way of increasing my income. Increasing referrals was only part of the solution. And when I looked at all the things I was giving up or turning down in order to keep taking insurance reimbursement at $60/session, I knew it was time to take the leap I had been dreaming about for years. Now I work one job, my private practice, and I am currently at about 50% of my clients paying my full fee. I have more steps to take and more dreams to pursue and more energy to do it.
When I started valuing myself more, meeting my own needs better, I freed up the energy to dream and enforce boundaries. Now I sleep well, take breaks, am meeting new colleagues, taking new training, and getting consultation when needed. I still haven't increased my overall business income to pay myself more, but I know what to work on and what to let go of. I know what's working and what's not working. And I know I can value my business, my clients AND myself. I no longer have to sacrifice my well-being for success.
And I'm so glad I've trusted those two coaches from California! As I've gained not only more of myself but also an amazing community of authentic therapists encouraging each other along our journeys. "
Marci is one of our amazing Business School Bootcamp Alumni. You can learn more about the Business School Bootcamp for Therapists here.
Note from Miranda: I absolutely love watching this process of growth over time. I loved not just watching Marci go through and make a TON of changes in that first round of bootcamp, but how lifetime access is allowing her to keep going deeper into the process. You can learn more about Marci and her anxiety and relationship counseling in Independence, MO here.