Alicia Cramer is a business and mindset coach who helps to clients overcome challenges, perfect their mindset, and achieve more of their potential.
In this interview we talked about 3 themes:
- Overcoming fears – of spending the money on an new business, of taking the risk, of leaving a steady paycheck
- Managing people – providing leadership, managing performance
- Working on yourself – continuing your education, getting coaching
Alicia’s message to everyone was that we all have fears, doubts and insecurities. Those thoughts of “is this the smart thing to do” or “is this safe” can snowball into a paralyzing fear that leaves you like a deer caught in headlights – frozen with fear.
The most successful individuals project an air of confidence but they have the same doubts, fears and insecurities as anyone else.
Strategies to get over the fear and take action include:
- Finding a mentor who has ‘been there and done that’ before (I found a mentor on LinkedIn!)
- Reading biographies of successful people (start with Richard Branson, Losing my Virginity)
- Chatting with others in online forums (smartcompany, inc.com, fizzle.co)
There is a cultural bias which pushes us to ‘feel the fear but do it anyway’ but we need to recognize that sometimes that isn’t the right path. That fear can be a indicator that your gut is telling you that you don’t have enough information yet.
Alicia brought up a powerful strategy for getting in touch with your gut, your deepest decision-making centre – meditation. I’ve written about getting started with meditation before; I’ve found it helpful in reaching that ‘gut feel’. As you progress with a meditation practice, you might reach a plateau as I have. Alicia gave me some great advice that I might have built up a tolerance to my current meditation practice, as you would with beer. Time to find some new techniques!
We also talked about leadership. Providing great leadership to your team is about learning yourself, balancing your strengths with your weaknesses, and developing skills. Some of the skills you need include:
- Active listening
- This is where you paraphrase back what the other person is saying
- Not reacting immediately, or taking the time to process news (eg flying off the handle when hearing bad news)
- Develop your composure
- But- something I haven’t heard before – empathize with boundaries, without getting caught up in the other person’s drama
- Develop your understanding
- Delegate tasks to others that are not your strength (eg i try and delegate tasks that require attention to detail… can you tell?)
- Projecting confidence to your team
- Being vulnerable when you have insecurities – but not to your team, to your coach!
Since Alicia’s core business is coaching, I wanted to delve deeply into finding a good coach. Here’s what to look for!
You’re looking for someone you feel comfortable being completely honest with. They will believe in you and your vision even when you don’t! They are a mentor who will help you see problems in a different light. They will help you shift your perspective when you need it most. They will help you find a solution.
A business coach should have the skill sets that match where you’re at, what skills you want to develop and where you want to go. You need to be ready to push your comfort zone – they will not push you unless you’re ready.
The exciting thing about having a business coach is that you can outline a big vision, and they will help you develop the skills you will need to get there.
Reach out to Alicia at AliciaCramer.com or on LinkedIn.