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How Are You Secretly Sabotaging Yourself?

I’m doing a complimentary coaching session with a woman not too long ago, and what happens speaks volumes about how we limit ourselves and cut ourselves off from possibility … often without even realizing it.

She’s a perfect match. I can really help her.

She wants to build her business by speaking and already has an important speech scheduled. But she’s never been successful making an offer from the stage and … like so many … she’s burdened with issues around “sales.”

I’m a business coach and marketing strategist, who specializes in helping business owners … mostly service providers … build their businesses by speaking. And a big part of what I do is helping them craft and make a compelling offer from the stage that lands like an opportunity … one that’s never salesy.

What she wants and needs is right in my wheelhouse.

Plus, we get along together nicely. There’s a comfortable rapport.

When I lay out the steps I think she needs to take and the guidance I can provide, she agrees the marketing strategy makes sense.

But when I ask her, “So what do you think? Would you like to talk about the possibility of working together?” … she answers with an emphatic, “No!”

Now, it’s perfectly okay for someone to say no to any invitation. It’s also perfectly okay for someone to decide they don’t want to work with me as their business coach.

What threw me was her reasoning.

“I know I can’t afford you and I don’t want to be disappointed.”

“But you don’t know how much I cost. Would you like to talk about that?”


Okay, I honor that, but what bewildered me was she’d made up her mind that she wouldn’t be able to get the help she needed and had foreclosed on possibility before she even knew her options.

You have to be an “opening” for opportunities. You have to be looking for ways to make things work if you want to be successful, rather than conjuring up all the reasons why things won’t or can’t work.

She was an automatic no.

Now, that behavior may seem a little odd to you. You’d at least want to know what your options were and how much it would cost to get the help you needed, wouldn’t you? And then, if it doesn’t make sense to hire yourself a business coach, you can always say, “No thanks.”

But think about it. Is her behavior really all that unusual?

We all have places where we’re a reflexive no. We all convince ourselves in certain areas of our lives and business that things won’t work out, that there’s no hope, that we’re foolish to even explore the possibilities.


Because it helps us avoid disappointment, and that’s apparently a very big deal for the subconscious mind. It’s really quite keen on avoiding pain of all kinds.

It’s always whispering, “Oh, that’s not a good idea. You could screw that up. That could be dangerous.”

But here’s the fundamental question. Are you better off in life avoiding pain or pursuing possibilities that excite you, ones that can enrich your life and enhance your business … even if they don’t always work out?

Seems like a no-brainer, but you have to actively, consciously manage your thinking or it’s easy to slip into the avoidance mindset as a kind of default.

So, as a business coach, I have to ask … where, if anywhere, are you foreclosing on possibility in your business before you even know what it looks like … before you even fully explore your options?

Where are you a reflexive no? Be brutally honest with yourself.

Look carefully at those areas, because that’s where the biggest breakthroughs in your business are likely to come from.

We leave so many possibilities stillborn.

And here’s the kick in the pants. So often, all it takes for possibility to manifest is for you to simply allow it.

Allowing … how hard is that?

Best Wishes,


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Meet Denise: Denise Hedges is a Business Development Coach and Speaker Coach for small business owners who want to be more comfortable, confident, and successful with their sales and marketing efforts. She specializes in helping them use speaking as a way to dramatically improve their results!