Any business owner, whether experienced or new to the work, can feel the pressure of stress, anxiety, and overwhelm.
- Stress makes you feel the weight of too much responsibility.
- Anxiety makes you feel that danger is all around.
- Overwhelm makes it impossible to choose among the many options and opportunities around you.
Stress, anxiety, and overwhelm make your life harder than it needs to be. At an extreme, they can cause mental and emotional paralysis. They can bring your business to the ground.
But you don’t have to continue to suffer. You have a resource for help.
If you’ve ever driven in a snowstorm, you’ve seen how life can come at you in a dizzying stream. So many choices, so many opportunities, so many new tools and technologies, so many tried-and-true methods that have never gone away.
How do you choose? How do you experiment without chasing every shiny object? The author of a blog post at The Small Business Coaches writes, “You may be so consumed with the day-to-day running of your business that you’ve lost the ability to figure out what you want.”
At the core, the question is about who you are and how you want to proceed.
That sounds easy, but having a guide to help you make clear decisions can clear your mind and give you the confidence to blaze your own trail.
A good business coach will help you understand your own goals and working style. She’ll help you know what’s worth your time and how to manage the opportunities coming your way.
One of the benefits of business coaching is being sure that you’re doing the right thing right now.
We live in a stream of words, thoughts, and ideas. We talk to ourselves, communicate with others, take in the words of “experts” who seem to know more about what we should be doing than we do.
Even if we stop it all by turning off our devices and going for a walk in the woods, we still have to make plans and processes that make sense. And that can turn into a hamster wheel of “if this, then that,” but “if that, then something else, but what about this?” And around and around and around.
Having someone listen to the questions spinning around in your head can be incredibly helpful. Someone who doesn’t share your particular blind spots, who has seen people take this path before, who can help you make connections you might have missed.
Getting feedback is one of the valuable benefits of business coaching. You get a supportive neutral party to help you sort your priorities and evaluate what you should do next.
Many people have a love-hate relationship with deadlines. On the one hand, a deadline accuses you of procrastination and then keeps you up late, finishing just under the wire. And all the while, you’re promising, “It will never happen again.’”
On the other hand, the deadline makes you come through and finish. Whether it’s your best work or not, it’s done, no longer hanging over your head.
Business coaching provides accountability without judgment. It’s not a matter of “turn in the paper or fail the course.” It’s more like, “How’s that plan coming along?” By maintaining a nonjudgmental attitude, your business coach leads you to want to make progress before the next meeting.
Benefits of Business Coaching
When you put together clarity, feedback, and accountability, you have a winning formula.
You know what you want to accomplish.
You get helpful advice in deciding how to accomplish it.
You get someone paying attention to whether you follow your plan or not.
Some people list the benefits of business coaching as things like confidence, better strategy, more money. Those are fine things, but they don’t come off the shelf.
In a 2014 study by the International Coach Federation, participants stated their reasons for seeking business or personal coaching:
Here are their top answers:
- Optimize work performance
- Expand professional career opportunities
- Increase self-esteem or self-confidence
- Improve business management strategies
- Manage work/life balance
These may seem like different goals, but they all flow naturally from clarity about what you want to accomplish, feedback about your strategies to accomplish it, and accountability in your efforts to carry out your plan.