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Small Business Revitalization Blog

Small Business Coaching: Revive Your Profits, Revitalise Your Perspectives, Reinvigorate Your People

The Breakthrough Moment



The breakthrough moment... is that moment when you come up against everything that IS possible... and you either choose it (even if it is REALLY uncomfortable) or you back away, hiding amongst the excuses that have kept you from going beyond it in the past.

How many times have you almost got there, only to stop yourself?  Is it time to stop it... or do you love stopping you?

Are any of these scenarios familiar to you?

“I know I can do this, but before I do, I just need to.....(insert big thing that is your current ‘unsolvable obstacle’ here).....”

“I would love to do this, but I’m just going to..... (insert small, unimportant list of busy work here).....”

“I am procrastinating because I am not ready, I need to learn..... (insert your personal ‘less than’ comparison to as many guru’s in your industry as you can find here).....”

“I know this is really important, but I have to do my client work first... (insert long list of client work and excuses for not working ON your business here).....”

“I can’t. I am afraid of..... (insert your favourite set of fears and doubts that you use to distract yourself from moving forward here).....”

I have coached hundreds of people in getting over the personal limitation that is stopping them from breaking through to creating what they truly desire - in business and beyond.

And here’s the thing... it's never about needing more, learning more or doing more or waiting for something else to show up first. It's always about BEING more! 

Sound crazy?  Here’s how it works. How many people do you know who are ‘wasting their potential’?  You know it, everyone around them knows it, in most cases they know it too.  And they are as frustrated as hell about it.

If this is you, there is a really simple solution.  You make the demand of yourself that this changes NOW.  That you aren’t going to listen to your brilliant but oh so limiting excuses anymore.  You are going to take the action that will move you forward in leaps and bounds, rather than going round in circles. 

And then you do it.  Not from the space of doubt, lack or fear; but from the space of “I’m kick-ass and I’m going to rock this!  What do I need to be or do different that will allow me to create this with ease?” Notice that being this energy puts a totally different spin on what’s possible?

That’s what I’m talking about when I say BE more.  The truth is, you don’t need to be anything other than what you truly be.  If you stop ‘wasting your potential’ you’ll make a much greater demand of yourself to deliver beyond your excuses.  

You are ready.  There is no better time.  You know enough.  You are more than enough. Go be everything you can be!  Your life (and business) will have so much more ease when you embrace and acknowledge your true capacities rather than pretending they don’t exist.  What could you play with today, that would change all possibilities with ease?  It takes courage.  And it's SO worth it!

How do I know what to do with this particular entrepreneurs dilemma?  I’ve been there - stopping myself by most of the options above and then some... and I’m not allowing myself to be pathetic or side-tracked anymore.  Just so you know... You’re not alone here.  AND also know there is a greater possibility available! Are you demanding it?

If you’d like some more tools for going beyond your breakthrough moment, you can contact Lisa Murray for a personal Breakthrough Session or listen in to her free New Energies of Business show on Blog Talk Radio. 

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What's Missing In Your Business?

You know that feeling you get when you know something is missing, but you just don't know what it is?  You 'should' be making way more money, but you're not.  You 'should' be moving forward faster with your projects, but you're not.  You 'should' be engaging with way more people, but you're not!  

When I looked underneath all of the 'shoulds' in one of my businesses it came down to one thing.  Consistency. I was great at doing lots of the things that were needed to make it work. Occasionally. Randomly. When I felt inspired. When I remembered. When I wasn't distracted with client projects. And when I looked at the times the business had worked really well, it was when I was doing the business generating and expanding activities CONSISTENTLY!

Most of us have some idea of what to do to create growth in our business.  When we first started we figured it out - because it was get it to work or go back to the JOB.  Motivation comes from interesting places!  And once we had it figured out and the business was moving forward, we got busy with other activities.  The actions that sound important, the actions that are required to service our customers. The actions that took us away from the genuinely essential actions.

These are the actions that keep a business running...  Somewhere in your business there are some actions missing that make the difference between a thriving business and a surviving business.  What are they?  It's different for every business.  You know your business model and you know what it takes to keep the engine humming.  And if you aren't sure, that's your first action - find out!!

If you know what it is, how much attention are you giving to the daily, weekly or monthly actions that keep the engine in tune and humming along effortlessly?  If a few things have fallen off the consistency wagon, now is the time to change that.

I know what you are thinking.  "If it was easy for me to be consistent with these things I'd be doing it!"  Yes, I hear you! Consistency not natural for me either - I much prefer to play with new ideas!!  And I'm inviting you to find a way to make it work for you - because you know and I know that when you do these things consistently, your business will grow!

Here are three ways I get myself in the energy of being consistent:
1)  Produce in blocks.  For example, instead of writing random blog posts because I haven't posted lately and I need to show up, I'll write 10 - 15 posts at a time and schedule them in advance.  Faster and easier and everyone feels the love!

2)  Delegate.  There are just some things you'll never get to.  Find someone who is better than you at the task in hand and make it their job to deliver regularly.  Make a diary note so you can check the task is being completed.

3)  Power Hours.  I've talked about these before.  They are one of my favourite things.  Make a list of all those small things that need doing regularly that you just have to do and set aside a daily or weekly power hour.  It might be making client appointments, paying your team.  Whatever it is that will create more space and more possibilities for the future, schedule it!  Some weeks I even have two!  Because I know that an hour of priorities each week saves me many more hours down the track.  And we'd all like to work less right?

So, this week's business coaching challenge is to identify at least two things that would make a difference to your business if you did them consistently, and set up a system for getting them done!  You don't need to be the source, you just need a system that works!

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Does Size Matter?

I ask a lot of questions about my businesses every single day.  It’s part of having a constantly generative, creative, expansive energy running through everything I do.  One thing that has come up in my awareness this week is the question of size.

Does size matter?  For me, apparently it does!  I was looking at what wasn’t moving forward quickly and I realised that most of those things weren’t big enough - they were boring me with their smallness! 



The more I explored the more I could see how the size of a project becomes an inspiration to me.  Which is one of the reasons I still do occasional consulting work for large businesses - it's that enticement of having a much bigger playground to apply my creativity and capacities to.  


The obvious conclusion from this is - "I need to make my businesses way larger."  And that's where most people stop.  Not me!  

Something didn't feel correct. I asked more questions.  "What is it about BIG that I love?"  It's about having bigger budgets, more resources for creating faster, more engagement with talented brilliant people, more flexibility to experiment, more possibilities showing up by being more visible, more toys to play with…

  

"How could I create that?" came next.  And I realised that I am very very close to having all of the energies I love in my businesses right now.  With a few tweaks, all of that could be put into place over the next couple of months with ease.

"What else is there to know about this?"  I have this way of popping into social media just when the exact piece of information I require is available.  Yesterday someone wrote something like "the universe has no point of view about size - creating something small or large is just as easy, so why not start with large?"   

And that fired my imagination some more.  "If I stop making it all about size, what else could be possible?  What would I ask for that I have never asked for before because it was too big or too small?"  Yeah, you can hear my ideas going off like popcorn right now!!

Imagine if we took away all of our judgements about size and asked for the elements of what we would like to create instead?  Would that create a different future for your business? It is for mine!


(In case you are wondering, this is what business coaching with Lisa Murray is like... a series of ever-expanding conversations and questions that create and outcreate and create some more! I was just doing my thing on myself...as a follow-on from a conversation I had with my mentor about how I could have everything move forward faster.)


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What Is Beyond Meditation?

 

Do you meditate to keep yourself on track?  For many years whenever I negotiated my job conditions with a new employer, I also negotiated time to go to my weekly personal meditation session with my then mentor.  A lot of employers found it a little strange, but I never had anyone say no!!!

The funny thing was, despite my commitment to the meditation cause, meditation didn’t really ever work for me in the ways I hoped.  I spent hours a day meditating for many years and there was very little to show for it – I was still the world’s most incredible over-thinker… and I still did not have the space and peace that I desired.  

The Huffington Post talks about the daily habits of wealthy successful business leaders who use meditation and mindfulness techniques to superpower their capacities… that was my target with meditation too– until I became aware of even more creative, generative possibilities that took a lot less time and gave me a lot more ease.

Here’s the thing… meditation is designed to give your brain space.  To stop you thinking.  To have you just BE.  We have been presented with one basic way to meditate – sit still and empty your mind.  And while there are lots of variations to that theme, it just doesn’t work for some people.

Now I use other tools to create total space in my brain… and in my body… and these tools exponentialize my awareness far beyond anything I experienced with meditation.  I am happier, healthier and way more creative than I ever was when I was meditating.  Here’s why…     

  • I let go of having to use the ‘right’ process… and started to use what was actually working for me.
  • I found other variations of meditation that the purists would judge as ‘wrong’ – and yet they create a greater result for me.  I have more space, ease and peace now than I have ever had!
  • In discovering over 20 ways to create that space, I can have it wherever I am, whenever I need, without having to do something ‘significant’ to create it.  

Are you curious yet?  What if you had a toolbox that would allow you to create far beyond what most people imagine possible?  Here’s three things you can play with to see what works for you!!

  1. Move your body rhythmically – whether it be a run at lunchtime, a walk and talk meeting, or some stretches in a park.  Allowing your body to move and being totally present with your body will free up your mind!
  2. Ask questions.  My current  favourites are “What space can I be right now?  How much space can I be here?”  And you don’t even have to ask out loud – ask quietly in your head while everyone around you is losing theirs and you may be surprised at what shows up!!!
  3. BE present.  When we are present with what is, rather than what ‘should’ be, we tap into an awareness that is different to the busyness in our head.  What if you BE with what is and stop judging it?  Have you noticed how much head chatter is actually judgment of what is right or wrong?  What if it just is?  And what if you can contribute your presence and energy to creating something different… IF that is what you desire?

And know this… whatever works for you works for you… please stop trying to fit into other people’s realities around what works for them!   So many well-meaning people tell me I need to meditate.  I am grateful for their point of view.  AND I’m not going to buy it… what works for me right now is what works for me!!

Do you do something different than the ‘norm’ to create space, ease and peace?  What unexpected thing is it that superpowers your possibilities in business?  I would love to know!|

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It's a New Financial Year - What's New For You

It's a new financial year... and it's a great idea to look at what you'd like to be new or different for your business over the next 12 months.    If you would like a new financial future, you need to do things different.

In my 'New Energies of Business' Blog Talk Radio shows I have recently talked about some very different approaches to money - here are two gifts for you:

 

"Creating Money Flows or 'Money Just Goes'!" 

Listen to internet radio with New Energies of Business on BlogTalkRadio

 

Have you noticed how creating money flows isn't working like it used to?  The sharemarket is in flux, property markets in Australia aren't doing much, clients aren't showing up in response to the promotions and advertising that always worked before...are you wondering what else is possible?

Lots of people have been asking me questions about the financial contraction that they are aware of... so let's talk money!

What's different about creating money right now?  How do you create more money when nothing is working how it used to?  What change is possible for the future?

 

"Changing the Meanness in Business"

 On this show I interviewed Kerry Purcell - co-creator of a substantial and successful multi-million dollar business.  We didn't plan to talk a lot about money, but Kerry had some extraordinary stories to tell about how she has contributed to changing the reality with money in her business.  Totally worth listening to!

Listen to internet radio with New Energies of Business on BlogTalkRadio

 

Have a great week... and make some space for considering the future of your business. 

If what you have been doing isn't working as well as you'd like, it's time to make some changes!  We live in a changing world.  What if nothing ever worked the same as it did yesterday?  What would you create today?

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3 Strategies For When Your Plans Stop Working

"Help!  My plans for growing my business aren't working!"

Every entrepreneur has moments like these when no matter what you do, nothing seems to work and you are going round in circles.  You have two choices.  You can get frustrated.  Or you can start to create from a totally different space.  So many times when things haven't worked for me, I have realised that there were other possibilities that actually would create the business even more dynamically than I had imagined.  I just needed to be willing to be flexible and change my plans.

Here are three 'get moving fast' strategies to explore:

1.  WHAT is it EXACTLY that is not working?

We often assume that we know what it is that's not working.  And mostly the root cause is something else entirely.  Ask a lot of questions to discover what is actually going on.  Have you been trying to fix the 'wrong' problem?  For example: If you are not winning enough business, look at the entire process - where exactly is it not working? 

Ask questions of your sales team, your clients and potential clients.  What is the system, process or relationship that is not delivering the results you desire? (This is not a head-hunt for poor performing staff!!  In most cases there is another reason - that is just the lazy business owner's assumption.)

2.  WHAT could you do DIFFERENT that would create a different result?

 

What worked 2 or 5 or 20 years ago may no longer be relevant.  What has changed inside and outside of your business?  What do you need to change in response that would change the results you are creating?  What are the new possibilities that you haven't even considered yet?  When we take off the blinkers and start to be creative, new choices arrive. We must be willing to change.

In one of my businesses, I recently went from being fully booked for the next two months, to having almost nothing going on.  The causes were diverse and beyond my control.  I gave myself ten seconds to be frustrated and then I was asking 'what's next?'.  

I realised this situation had created the possibility for something new that I have desired to do for a long time, that I just never get to.  The new strategy will also create the future situation where it won't matter if people don't do what they say.  My revenue streams will be diversified enough to make their choices irrelevant!!    And what else is possible that I haven't imagined yet?

 3. Make your business FLEXIBLE!

Whatever systems, processes, products or services your business has, you need to be aware of how you can be flexible with what you have.  There is a lot of chaos in the world right now, and will be for the foreseeable future.  When you explore future scenarios for your business, take note of what can be changed quickly, and where you are locked in.  If you are agreeing to new contracts, look for the flexibility.  If you are employing staff, engage people who are flexible and willing to do whatever it takes.

I was called into a client's business to work out what was not working with their processes.  I had been there less than 5 minutes when the new office manager sat down (uninvited!) and told me how she was being asked to do things that weren't her job and that she wasn't going to do.  There was no willingness to contribute to the success of the business, there was no interest in being flexible. There was no interest in ensuring that clients were attended to quickly.  Her attitude was all about 'I'm not going to....'. She was first on my list of what needed to change.

So what is it that would make your business way more flexible and responsive to change than it is now?  Cross-skilling staff?  Space for a change in attitude?  Simpler processes and systems that people will actually be willing to follow? 

These three strategies can change things quickly.  Ask enough questions and you will become aware of exactly what else is needed for your business to move forward again.  Staying stuck is a choice. 

If you are really really really stuck, you can always ask an external coach or mentor to assist.  That independent point of view truly does bring a fresh perspective.

What can you change to make your business more profitable!  (What if you could enjoy making the changes??)

Lisa

 

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Got a Flexible Map for 2013?

 

This time of year is flush with people posting their ‘year in review’ thoughts, dissecting everything that went right or wrong with the year before, and promising themselves they’ll do better.  Because I am always seeking a greater return on the energies I invest in my businesses, my personal ‘planning’ strategy is to explore the energies that are going to make the greatest difference in the upcoming year.

Why don’t I look at the previous year?  I review where I’m at about 25,000 times a year… my choices are made daily, based on what is possible in that particular moment, not on what was possible last week, last month or last year.  Have you noticed how fast the world is changing?  Is it time for our planning processes to catch up with the space we actually are operating from?

This radical difference in my ‘planning process’ led me to create these Ten Commandments for Dynamic Business Growth.   So, #1 became “Treat your business as an asset – create FOR the future, not FROM the past.”  What does this mean in practical terms? Lots of change and lots of choices!

Firstly, what I don’t do…

  • I don’t assume that just because I did something in a particular way in 2012 (or before!) that it will create the same result in 2013.
  • I don’t assume that products I have created before will continue to produce results.
  • I don’t assume that previous ideas that I haven’t got to yet are the ones for this year.
  • I don’t assume that I must build on what I did previously.
  • I don’t assume that anything will be the same, including me!  (I did over 60 days of training in tools and techniques to create change during 2012… I use the tools daily and constantly create from a different space as my awareness expands!)

Instead of doing business from the ‘rinse and repeat’ cycle, I do business from a universe of possibilities – I ask lots of questions about what will allow me to ‘outcreate and grow’.  Which one is more fun for you?  Do you love creating more and more and greater?  Or do you love doing the same thing over and over and over, with ever-diminishing results, as your competitors catch on and copy you?  It’s just a choice.

And that choice is how you build your business assets from future possibilities rather than past performance.   To build your business assets you need to be present with your business.  Aware of everything connected to your business performance.  Willing to change any of it in any moment.  

Most businesses are so committed to the past that the present disappears in the overwhelm of keeping up.  What if you never had to keep up?  What if you could just keep choosing whatever would create the greatest possibilities for the future?

That’s what commandment #1 offers… a choice to build the future from the now, not the past.

Curious?  Want some more examples and practical tools so you can use these commandments in your business?

Download your free poster and find out more at www.revivecoaching.com/growth

And one more thing…these commandments are a moveable feast… they are what’s working right now!   I’d love to know what YOUR commandments for growing your business are… do you have a favourite you can share?    Lisa

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Are You Solving Problems Or Out-Creating?

 

I have a mentor who sees the world totally different to almost anyone on the planet.  His unique views on business make a lot of sense and he creates his businesses from an energy that is all about out-creating rather than problem-solving.  Why?  Because it works!

“Problem-solver” is a label much touted as a good thing in most businesses. The funny thing is, if you are a problem-solver, then you are always going to be creating problems to solve.  Oops!!  How is that working for your business?  Are you a little tired of fixing the problems in your business that you are creating? (Truly, if they are there, you are creating them somehow!)  Is it time to create a greater possibility?  One that could be fun for you?

A business truly focused on growth will create from an energy of out-creating, rather than problem-solving.  Look at how Apple began – they weren’t solving a problem, they were creating something totally different.  Richard Branson doesn’t solve problems; he out-creates the really average stuff that is on offer by his ‘competition’.

Two weeks ago I asked my mentor a few questions about people copying me (there seemed to be a  trend on that!) and he showed me an energy of out-creation that was far beyond what I have been playing with.  Out-creation is ALWAYS a more generative strategy than copying or competing (just in case you were wondering!!)

This week I came up with a new business model for one of my businesses that has the potential to make it into everything I have been asking it to be!  On a much larger scale… with a lot less of my time… that no-one else is doing… and in a way that would be way more fun for me!  How does it get better than that?

Here’s how it gets even better… I come up with another 10 business models that are game changers.  It really is that simple.  I became aware that the only ‘problem’ I had been creating in this business was not allowing it to be big enough… or amazing enough... or creative enough… or DIFFERENT enough!  Cute… not bright.  Changes are afoot!  

So, you could ask your business this question… and be willing for inspiration to come from anywhere…

“What could I be or do today that would allow me to outcreate myself right away?”

 And if you would like to know more about how to create a whole lot of this in your business, here are some choices:

If you have been thinking too small, now is the time to outcreate everything you have ever dreamed of.  Go Play!

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Conscious Business: Are You Moving Forward?



I woke up obsessed with taking a walk through Noosa National Park to Hells Gate.  When I got into the car it was raining (again!)  By the time I was halfway there the rain was coming down in sheets and visibility was pretty much zero.

I almost turned around, but I really, really, really wanted that walk! I could see the tiniest piece of blue sky to the south and I wasn’t allowing a bit of water to stop me.   Arriving at the National Park the rain stopped and midway to Hells Gate it was sunny again! I truly was one excited little bunny!

So what's a walk in the rain got to do with doing business consciously? 

Have you noticed how often we are tempted to give up when we are just a few moments from the thing we truly desire?  What is it you are almost about to give up on, that if you would keep going, would come to fruition faster and sooner than you can imagine?

It’s easy to give up in business.  Sometimes so much has to change beneath the surface before we can see our creations come to life…  That wait can be longer and harder than we desire if we are trying to force something into existence.  If, on the other hand, we go with the flow on the projects that are moving forward and we keep creating and generating lots of different possibilities, our choices expand exponentially.

If I had gone home this morning, I would have spent the whole day looking out the window, wishing I’d been for that walk.  Instead, my willingness to go with my instincts (despite gloomy surface appearances) gave my body some much needed creative impetus and I’m settling in to write for a while!  

And that’s the other part of moving forward to be conscious of… I’m once again working on my book The Mojo of Flow – which I thought would be out last year… but sometimes the flow just isn’t there… so I’ve done a few other projects in the meantime and the last pieces of information that I was ‘waiting’ for have shown up this week – how does it get better than that??

I could have beaten myself up for not finishing when I said I would… but really I always know there is a reason if something isn’t moving forward in the way I would like.  This last chapter will make it the book I knew it could be… that it wasn’t… until this topic came into my conscious awareness!! I am so grateful for consciously allowing the joy which made it all flow with ease (rather than going into the wrongness of me)!

So, let’s do something together…  Would you be willing to stop beating yourself up for anything that’s not working in your business right now… and start playing with whatever has some energy and some momentum? 

And would you put the 'stuck' or 'stopped' projects aside and keep contributing your energy to them, without a point of view as to what will happen next?  What if they could create and generate themselves with an ease you haven't experienced before?

As you do this, ask each project to let you know when it is time for you to play with it again… and know that everything happens with perfect timing.  

I see this ease of moving forward show up over and over with my business coaching clients.  We talk about a strategy, there’s no action, then all of a sudden everything falls magically into place, with an ease that is still astonishing each time it happens!  When we let go of our expectations and just keep moving forward, so much more becomes possible.

Are you willing to operate your business consciously?  Or would you rather do it by force?  How is that working for you?

Have you ever experienced how this flow creates such ease? Tell us about it below!  Or if you are wondering what the hell I am talking about... feel free to ask a question!! 

 Love your work! xox Lisa

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What does it take to outcreate YOU?

For most of 2011 I found time and I to be on totally different calendars.  Time disappeared faster than I could keep up and I found that more than a little frustrating!  2012 dawned and I had the awareness I needed to create a different possibility – or I would be forever feeling ‘behind’ on everything.

When a challenge shows up, do you do what you have always done, go into ‘fix it’ mode, or do you take it as an invitation to create something way beyond what you’ve ever done before?  

What if your challenges are designed to stimulate you to a greater level of awareness of new possibilities?  What if you approached your challenges with a sense of curiosity and adventure instead of the usual sense of dread or despair?

This is how I’m playing with time right now… and I’m the most productive I’ve ever been – with more joy in my work than I’ve ever had!

So what has changed?
  • I am having more time off to play which is creating space and clarity.
  • I am only doing that which is bringing me joy.  No joy = later (or not at all!!)
  • I am being way more creative.  The massive changes I have embraced in being more of me over the last few weeks are allowing solutions to show up faster and more intuitively.
  • I am moving with what is moving – projects that feel stuck have been put aside for the moment (it’s that Mojo of Flow thing I like to talk about!)
  • I am working in shorter, more intense and spontaneous bursts – more 20 minute blocks than 3 hours of being blocked!
  • When I’m done, I’m done!  No suffering, no sticking it out just a little bit longer, nothing except the question ‘what else would be fun to play with right now?’ – And that is creating a sense of ease and speed across all of my businesses.
  • I’m willing to change anything and everything… even approaches that have worked in the past… there are no sacred cows!!
  • I’m saying YES to more and creating far more!  Strange how this works… but work it does!!
And in case you’re wondering… I’m running three businesses as well as producing a lot of specialist writing for a client.  So everywhere that you have decided you don’t have enough time, would you be willing to know that you can change it?  In an instant?  Just by making a different choice or discovering a different perspective??

I know it sounds way too simple… but sometimes the simplest solutions make the biggest difference!!

What if you could outcreate you?  What would that look like for your particular business challenge?

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