This is your reminder to keep going

watering can watering seedlings in rich earth with sunlight

How are you going to get your first paying client?


By not giving up. You’re going to keep on going. You’re working so hard and it might seem like you’re not getting anywhere but all I can say is that going from zero clients to signing your first client is the hardest part.

Like an aeroplane taking off, it’s that first upward movement that uses up most energy. 

Probably 80% of all the energy you’re ever going to put into your business will all happen in those initial two years of trying to grow and get established.

You might be questioning why it’s so slow, and wondering how long you can keep going. Feeling like you’re going round in circles and getting frustrated that it’s not happening as quickly as you’d like. 


There will always be tough times 


Whatever stage you’re at in your business journey, you’re likely to have tough times. We sometimes have the expectation that things will be easier than they turn out to be, and it’s always useful to remember that starting a business takes a lot of energy and tenacity.

It takes so much personal growth and so much courage. You need to get over the obstacle of being self-conscious about what people think of you.

But just stepping into the arena and starting your own business is more than 90% of people will ever do.

So take a minute to appreciate how brave, how courageous, and how determined you are for doing what you’re doing. 


Think about your dream


I really believe that dreams don’t randomly pop up. They’re there for a reason. If you have even an ounce of burning desire to do this, that you’re being called to do this, then don’t ignore that calling.

You might not yet know why, or what the end result is going to be, but your dream is there to remind you that you’re here to make a difference and that you’re uniquely placed to make that difference.


You’ve got what it takes


Lean into your coach training. 

If you have that dream, you have what it takes to achieve it. You are resourceful, wholly capable and you are good at what you do. You have the ability to figure it out and make it happen.

I love thinking about the fact that your dream has risen from the raw materials of your deepest talents and your truest self.

For example, I’ve got notes I wrote to myself when I was a teenager, talking about wanting to do this kind of work and here I am now, literally living that dream I had all those years ago.

This is the path that I was meant to take. As Mary Oliver, the Pulitzer prize-winning American poet, famously quotes, “What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

We have to work at our dreams to make them a reality. It’s not an easy path. But you wouldn’t have received that calling in the first place if you didn’t have what it takes buried with you, waiting to be tapped into.

Take a moment to think about when you have been creative. When you’ve shown resilience, when you have expressed your passion. When you have had pure grit. 

And remind yourself that it is all there inside you. You just have to keep believing in it every single day, reminding yourself that you can unlock it little by little. 

Surround yourself with supporters who will champion you when you get stuck in the moment and forget all of the amazing traits that you possess. 

One day, you will wake up and realise that your dream has become a reality and you have achieved everything that you set out to achieve. 


There will always be challenges


No matter how far you take your business, and even when you get to where you thought you always wanted to be, there will always be challenges. There’s never going to be an ‘easy place’ where you get to relax.

But the work you put in in the beginning will make it a different kind of hard, which will be nowhere near as hard as the early days of being full on, building your business from scratch.

I honestly think that going from £50k to £100k a year is a lot easier than going from £0 to £1k.

The biggest shift is someone actually paying you to do this work and gaining those first few paying clients. 

That’s why a lot of business coaches aim for clients who are further along in their business, because they know that the early stage, before you’ve got any paying clients, is the hardest part. 

It takes a lot of building, a lot of consistency and a lot of learning to get to the point where you are established and you are attracting paying clients. 


Uncertainty is part of the journey


Realising that uncertainty is part of the journey weeds out those who don’t have the courage and resilience you need to keep going.

Again, I’m not saying it’s easy, but those who have the most resilience and the most passion can achieve an amazing, successful, thriving business.

So, keep reminding yourself that if you remain flexible, open to possibilities and not tied to how you think things should progress, solutions will start to emerge – you just need to have faith. More on that in a bit.

I have a new client who was having a tough week. She messaged me saying that she’d been consistent for several months and she was finding it really hard to keep going without getting any positive feedback.

Then, just when she was about to give up on asking people to connect with her on LinkedIn, she received an email back from someone she had just connected with, inviting her to do a workshop for them! 

What a brilliant example of the results you can get if you just keep at it and you don’t give up.

That’s why I love the phrase, “A wise gardener keeps on watering the seed.” I say it at the end of every podcast episode.

It’s a really useful reminder that, when everyone else has given up, thinking it’s not worth it because it’s not working, the wise gardener is still trusting that, if they continue to nurture that seed, it will eventually grow into a super strong tree. 


Solutions will emerge


It used to drive me crazy when my first coach would always say to me that solutions will emerge. I just wanted to know the right answer there and then!

Now I’m more than four years into my business journey, it’s interesting how much more I’ve now leaned into that trust.

I used to be a very black and white type of person. Everything was right or wrong with no grey areas. I wanted guarantees about what would work.

I get the ‘solutions will emerge’ philosophy now, which I think comes from the maturity you gain through the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. 

Maturity gives you the ability to begin to trust that you are resourceful enough to be able to handle whatever comes your way, and that you can lean into the uncertainty of life, because it will always be that way. There is no certain path for any of us. 

As long as you keep putting one foot in front of the other, and keep on going, those answers and opportunities will start to present themselves, even if you can’t see them yet. 

Be observant, keep an open mind and you will start to notice things lining up and see amazing dots connecting in ways that you had never even imagined. 

When I look back now at my business building journey, I realise I would never have been able to do the work I’m doing now, if it hadn’t been for the embarrassment of my first video on social media or the failure of my first pitch. 

These experiences are all essential on our journey to success.


Action beats planning


Clarity will come from taking action every single day towards your dreams. Endless planning won’t. So don’t spend too long in the planning stage, get out there and take fast, messy action. Trust the process and things will start falling into place.

You will get there. Have faith. I believe in you!


Prefer Audio? You can also listen to all my new content on my podcast Women in the Coaching Arena

Whenever you’re ready, here’s how I can help you grow your coaching business:


  1. Love coaching, but struggling to get clients? Download the 12 Quick and Easy Ways to Get Clients now.


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Hello and welcome! I’m Joanna Lott, and I’m passionate about empowering qualified coaches like you to build brilliant businesses.