Why Coaches Fail – Paralysis Can Kill Your Coaching Business

Everybody knows that the odds of succeeding in an entrepreneurial business are no better than 1 in 5. But the coaching industry has plenty of undeniable success stories. And the rewards of “staying the course” and going for your dream are worth the risk many times over.

So what will make you one of those success stories? Here is one key factor:

Keep moving forward.

First, Start Moving

When you work for someone else, you plug into an already built structure. Your priorities and deadlines are set for you, pressing you to stay productive. When you start your own business, you have to create and maintain the structure – the bones of your business – yourself.

That requires being a self starter. And that’s where many coaches fall short.

Working on someone else’s dream can feel easier sometimes, but in most cases it’s a lot less meaningful than reaching for your own full potential.

Think of your business as a growing baby, and give it what it needs daily so it can develop into a mature, contributing business. The truth is, no one but you is going to feed it and build its strength.

Find out what will motivate you to be a self starter in your business – ways to PULL yourself forward. Get into the thrill of growing past your comfort zones. That attitude will get you out of bed and into action every day, because building your business while you help others reach their full potential makes you feel so alive.

Kick the Procrastination Habit Now

Procrastination is about postponing decisions and actions. If you’re surrounded by clutter – hundreds of emails in your inbox, stacks of paper everywhere – those are the symptoms of a procrastination habit. It’s likely there are decisions and actions you’re postponing that are seriously stunting the growth of your business.

Why do we postpone what will help us to succeed? We’re afraid we’ll make the wrong choice. We doubt that we have what it takes to make it, or that we deserve to.

There’s lots of advice out there about overcoming procrastination, but here’s my two cents:

When you are faced with a decision, make it.
When there’s a threshold to cross, take it.
If you’re afraid you’re a fraud, fake it.

This is how you’ll wake up one day and realize you are a success story.

Are you putting off the very things that you know will help you succeed as a coach?

Those things are called high payoff actions. They are the steps that will bring you what you really want much faster than that to-do list item you’re just itching to check off.

Thriving businesses are built by taking thousands of actions, one at a time, day after day. It’s easy to get paralyzed with overwhelm because there’s so much to do. But the reality is, there’s only one thing you need to do right now.

Decide what your next high payoff action is and just do that. Don’t worry about the steps down the road. You’ll get there when you get there.

Take One High Payoff Action, Then Another

Here’s a new habit to replace that old procrastination habit you’re getting rid of. At the end of each business day, choose three high payoff actions to complete on the next business day. Knowing what you’re going to do helps you jump out of bed. You’ve decided. Getting those tasks accomplished will keep you building momentum.

High payoff actions are steps that help you:

  • Grab the “low hanging fruit” – an action that brings you closer to landing a new client or increasing your income right now. For example: offering a sample session and closing with a new client, making a follow up call, setting up a speaking gig.


  • Set in motion a part of your “steady drip” marketing system to build trust with your target market and pre-qualify a steady stream of future clients. Publish your weekly blog post, interact daily in social networks etc.


  • Launch or improve an offer – a freebie, ebook, group coaching program, workshop, bundled program.


  • Set in motion a “big splash” marketing campaign to launch a new product or program or bring new buyers to an existing product or program.

Remember, big projects, like launching your own blog, are made up of many high payoff actions. Break it down and take one step at a time. (I’ll say more about the “steady drip” and “big splash” marketing approaches in future posts.)

Don’t Go It Alone

One of the best ways to stay in action is to be accountable to someone else. That’s why you were so on top of it in your old job – you were plugged into an accountability structure.

You can create your own accountability structure by joining a coaching business mastermind group like one of my by-application-only programs — the Prosperous Coach Circle. But don’t be a perennial student. Limit yourself to programs that you will take the time to implement.

Every coach gets overwhelmed at times, but some coaches know they will do whatever it takes to realize their most immediate goal, starting now. Be that kind of coach. It removes doubt from the equation and makes you unstoppable!

Share your comments on beating paralysis. What motivates you? How have you kicked the procrastination habit or overcome paralysis in your coaching business? What’s getting in the way of doing what you know will help you succeed?