Which Coach Archetype are You?

We know this: mindset and action are the make or break factors in our success on any given day. The trick to doing well while you do good for the world is a continual improvement of both.

A fun way to evolve and thrive in business is to pay attention to the archetypes — day to day pattern of thoughts and behaviors — you employ. Here are 4 archetypes I see in myself and other service entrepreneurs such as coaches. See if you recognize your current default archetype among these.

The 4 Archetypes

brave hearted coach

  1. The Perpetual Student is driven by scarcity to grab each new shiny program, but failing to implement much, falls into overwhelm and paralysis from over -consumption (the in breath) without execution (the out breath).
  2. The Perfectionist agonizes and second guesses minute behind-the-scenes details holding back from connecting their offers to their target audience and postponing the results they most want.
  3. The Hasty Executive  is fast to action on every idea, but hasn’t thought through what their audience really wants or how they’ll monetize their offers.
  4. The Brave Heart – is 100% committed to their own success raising courage to implement what they learn even through fear and knowing the value of mistakes. Because they value their time and think through the pathway to the results they want, they reap more rewards, both in joy and income.

More time spent in The Brave Heart archetype makes your biz more fun and rewarding in every way. If you find you default to one of the first three, know that it doesn’t define who you are; it’s just the pattern you’ve currently settled into. You have the power to move yourself into a more powerful way of being.

The Perpetual Student

The mantra: “I don’t know enough.” “The answers I need are out there.”

Take these steps to shift:

  1. Get at least 75% of your learning from testing and tweaking your mindset and actions.
  2. Hire a mentor and use accountability processes to advance you.
  3. Recognize and leverage the vast knowledge and skills you bring to the table. Use them to do good and do well now, rather than “someday”.
  4. Make this your new mantra: “I have everything I need to be successful inside of me. I implement what I learn and take daily actions to manifest what I want most.”

The Perfectionist

The mantra: “Once I have all my ducks are in a row, then I’ll get out there for real.”

Take these steps to shift:

  1. Realize that people want to connect with the real you, not the perfected version. Your authenticity, vulnerability and powerful mindsets are far more attractive than perfection.
  2. Set intention that you will “bake” everything you create to 60% done, and then put it out into the marketplace to get feedback from your target audience before improving it.
  3. First thing each business day, complete 3 bite-size high payoff actions — tasks that take you out of your comfort zone and have a big impact on your business success. (Hint: rather than reworking your web content the third time; make calls to centers of influence to put you in front of future clients.)
  4. Limit your time on each task. Set a timer for a “power hour” and accomplish as much as you can on high payoff actions. Get to “good enough” and move on. Repeat.
  5. Make this your new mantra: “I am enough as I am now. My target market prefers intuitive to overworked materials and programs.”

The Hasty Executive

The mantra: “Every idea is an idea I should act on.”

Take these steps now to shift:

  1. Work with a business coach with proven results to help you focus in, streamline and create long term smart strategies.
  2. Project your sales and then create clear goals and milestones generated from focused revenue streams.
  3. Develop criteria to differentiate a good idea from the right idea — one with high return potential. For each right idea, think through the best way to monetize your efforts and offers.
  4. Your new mantra is: “What does my target audience know they want to invest in?. How can I offer them that?”

The Brave Heart

The mantra: “I am on my power path.”

You recognize this archetype. When you feel decisive, are focused on high impact tasks, and 100% committed to your own success, it feels great and brings more of the results you want. It’s okay to sometimes plod and sometimes leap toward your goals because you’re focused. You on a hero’s journey.

To summon the brave heart within you:

  1. Recognize you are primed for this journey. Step fully into your power.
  2. Take one simple step after another, while acknowledging and releasing thoughts of fear, doubt, inadequacy. Keep “pitching balls” to the Universe so it can strike a home run for you. (Mike Dooley, Leveraging the Universe.)
  3. Cultivate an “unstoppable” attitude.
  4. Create a rhythm of action and flow.
  5. Raise courage, rather than looking for confidence, to cross thresholds into the unknown.


Share your comments below this post. What messages are you feeding yourself today? Are there other “archetypes” you’ve identified that you default into? What will you do today to cultivate your brave heart?


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  • Louise Crooks

    Love this post Rhonda! So many of my clients are clearly in one of these archetypes, and of course I am too. 🙂 Very insightful and revealing.

    • I used to say there were 3 but I’ve been running into a lot of folks lately who default to the Hasty Executive — working hard but going nowhere — so I added that 4th. What other archetypes have you experienced in yourself or in your clients, Louise?

  • Great post Rhonda!  I knew my type as soon as I read it.  Now, I have a simple set of tasks to move from “Perpetual Student” to “Brave Heart”.  Thank you so much!  Blessings ~Joy~ 

  • Julie

    Fantastic article, Rhonda! I always enjoy your posts, but this one really resonated with me. I see myself in both the Perpetual Student and the Perfectionist. I’m going to take action to shift today – the advice to take 3 big steps each day to move my business forward is especially helpful. Thanks!

    • You’ll love the 3 high payoff actions each day, Julie. You’ll get so much of the important stuff done and enroll more clients/earn more too.

  • Sharon Desjarlais

    Awesome article, Rhonda! I was going to say I’m the Perfectionist, but that doesn’t sound quite right. So I’m gonna wait till I know for sure, then tell you. 😉

    Big HUG,

    • Oh come on, I know where you default to Sharon. You live in your Brave Heart!

  • Sue

    Exactly what I needed to read today Rhonda.  thank you!!

  • Zita Fekete

    Thanks Rhonda, Great insight. I think I belong to the “Hasty Executive” and your advice helps me to focus. I din’t know you are dealing with archetypes?!?! 

  • Great insight! I use to be a perpetual student and a perfectionist. Now I’m just reformed perpetual student trying to become an X-perfectionist! I think I’ll pass on hasty executive and go for the gold – brave heart. Watching all this Olympic coverage has me in gold-silver-bronze mindset!. Thanks again for a great posting!  

    • The Olympic athletes are Brave Hearts for sure! Go for the gold, Bonnie!

  • Thanks for the piece, Rhonda. I know myself to be flip flopping from archetype number one to number four. This is insightful!


    • Hey Pooja, It’s AOK to be a student as long as you implement what you learn as a professional!

  • Lisa

    Rhonda –
    Great post and insight for me. I see a little of myself in each archetype, but I think the most important part is to make the shift. Your steps will help me make the shift to Brave Heart more consistently. Thank you!

    • I think we all have all the archetypes within. I’m so glad the steps are helping you make your Brave Heart your default mode, Lisa!

  • Mahalo Rhonda- Love this article, and I certainly recognize myself in each of the first two, and as I step into the Brave Heart-  I love that you gave such great steps to move forward wherever I am.  And so true that it’s so much easier to see in our clients than in ourselves- I guess that’s why we invest in coaches and mentors- thanks for that!!  Kalia

    • Mahalo Kalia! That’s exactly why coaching is so valuable.

  • Astra

    What a great post, Rhonda, thank you!

  • Excellent post, Rhonda!  It could have easily been one of the posts for the Productivity for Profits Summer Blog Tour and Giveaway! 

    I used to be a perpetual student, but I am now confident that I’ve had enough training (free and paid for) to move my business forward in a thoughtful and informed way.  I know that I need to continue to learn, but I’m not approaching this from the standpoint of fear of ignorance. I have the “perfectionist” gene, but learned to control it long ago.  I’m now working my way through the “hasty executive” mindset and am pleased to say that I have effectively begun utilizing the “power of slow” mentality and taking my time to think through things.  I am transitioning into being a “brave heart” most of the time!

    Thanks for sharing,

    • Oooo — the Productivity for Profits Summer Blog Tour and Giveaway — what a great title. Sorry I missed that Monique. Hope it was grand!

  • Dr. Jackie Black

    Brilliant model, Rhonda! Very clearly marked out distinctions and done in a respectful and non-judgmental voice. I always appreciate your laser view of things. I believe the Perfectionists and Brave Hearts can also benefit from the support of a mentor coach…just saying! All the BEST!   Dr. Jackie Black

    • Indeed, Jackie, no matter what voice is guiding the behavior, working with a mentor coach helps you shift and leverage everything to the next level!

  • Excellent post! Thank you for taking the time to so eloquently bring before us these archetypes for our consideration, and then offer us concrete actions to take. Such the heart of a coach!

    • My pleasure, Laurie. This post touched a lot of coaches. I’m delighted you connected with me here on my blog.

  • Kellie deRuyter

    Fabulous post, Rhonda! One of the best I’ve seen. Had to comment. I’m the perfectionist, of course.


    • Wow, Kellie! What an honor to hear that from you — your writing is top notch. Don’t try to fool me, you live in Brave Heart all the time!

  • Cynde Herman

    Rhonda, it seems I must confess…:-))  As a “perpetual student” – I have participated in many assessments, I have to say this is one of the most useful understanding to help me move forward.   I also appreciate Monique’s sharing as I see my path similar.  While my “biggest” default is “perpetual student”, when I move to action I then fluctuate between perfectionist and hasty executive.  Here’s to becoming a “The Brave Heart”.   Thanks you for all of your gifts of knowledge.  I continue to learn from the programs I have participated in!  

    • Thanks for sharing your experience, Cynde. I think that’s what most coaches and other conscious entrepreneurs do. It all comes down to treating your biz like a biz and being at cause for your results. I’m excited you’re letting your Brave Heart lead you now!

  • Bud Inzer

    Thanks Rhonda. I am appreciating how you have simplified archetypes (our silent partners) into four with suggestions and a mantra to get things rolling. Very nice.

    • Mine are not so silent when in default, but I know what you mean, Bud!