What does love have to do with building your business?


You have a gift to offer the world. Yes. You do.

And whether it’s a product or service, you have got to do what it takes to get it out there.

To shine like you were born to do.

Yes, you might feel paralyzed by fear. And yes, there is risk involved.

But in that paralysis there is a choice to be made.

You can give in to the the lizard brain that tries so hard to keep you safe, keeping all that love hidden away for some day…

OR

You can show your love. Now.

  • For yourself.
  • For your business.
  • For your bestest people, the ones fortunate enough to be called your customers.

Maybe that seems counter intuitive. After all, how can the Customer Love Challenge be about loving yourself and your business more?

Meet Sara. Like you, she was passionate about her work, one of the most entrepreneurial women I’ve ever met. She had a thriving business, a great marriage and a baby on the way. And? She was heading for serious burn out!

She had become so used to bending over backwards for her customers (which by the way, is not the same as customer love) that she had nothing left for herself. Some days, she even resented them, and over time, her business began to pay the price. She knew something was wrong, but wasn’t quite sure where to look or how to fix it.

I’m pretty sure you can relate to Sara’s story. I know I did.

Here’s the thing so many entrepreneurs forget:

If you’re not loving yourself first, there’s not much love to give to your customers.

Sara had to practice better self care, both for herself and the business. She began by committing to what we called a “feel good” activity every day; one action, consciously chosen every morning that she would treat herself to for the simple reason that it felt good to her.

Simple, but not necessarily easy.

Sara was pretty far gone by this time, and she could hardly come up with 5 actions. But over time, her list of go-to feel good activities grew longer, and her energy and passion for her work returned.

And now, it’s your turn.

Make a list of 5-10 “feel good” activities.

Here are a few of mine:

  1. Schedule lunch with a friend once a week
  2. Have an at-home spa day
  3. Enjoy 24 hours unplugged
  4. Go for a 20 minute walk in the middle of my work day
  5. Call somebody I love just to chat

And before you tell me you can’t, it’s not in the budget, etc.

Do it anyway.

I didn’t say spend a fortune. I didn’t say they had to be difficult or complicated. They simply have to leave you feeling good. Seriously, it’s not rocket science; it’s whatever feels good – for you!

After a couple of weeks, she started to feel better – more energy, more passion, more love for her customers, the same ones she’d begun to resent!

Once this became fairly consistent, Sara began to focus on a similar path for her business. Using the list below, she began to nurture her business.

Result?

By the time her baby was born 6 months later, her business was back on track and prepared for her maternity leave, she’d acquired new customers, her current customers were happy, and her staff were practicing a little self love themselves.

And Sara? Was bursting with love in all areas of her life!

28 Ways to Love Up Your Business:

This is the list Sara worked from, tweaked for Customer Love.

  1. Practice self care. How can you be of service when you’re running on empty?
  2. Ask for support (even the Lone Ranger had Tonto!) You can’t get if you don’t ask!
  3. Be unreasonable, as in without reasons! You can have your reasons or your results.
  4. Ask yourself, “What one task would make the biggest difference to my day?” Then go do that before anything else.
  5. Do small things to add value. Love doesn’t have to be flashy.
  6. Plan your work but be flexible. Being rigid is a form of self sabotage.
  7. Embrace change. Nature is constantly shifting, evolving and changing. You can too.
  8. Follow the energy. If you’re trying too hard at something? Let. It. Go.
  9. Be interested rather than interesting. What are your customers up to? Get curious and ask what they need.
  10. Don’t argue with reality. You’ll lose every time!
  11. Look for the path of least resistance. There’s no one right way to do things.
  12. Think big! When you create a goal that doesn’t seem possible, a gap will appear. That gap will stretch you out of the comfort zone.
  13. Get rid of something you’ve been hanging onto. Make space for new things to show up.
  14. Choose to respond instead of reacting. You always have a choice.
  15. Simplify. Make one phone call, complete one task, do one thing. Let yourself do LESS than what’s on your list.
  16. Express your love! Do something surprising, add extra value, just because you can.
  17. Under promise and over deliver. Stop being a people pleaser and put your attention on service.
  18. Say what you have to say. What’s left unsaid gets in the way of being effective.
  19. Honour your word as sacred. Because it is.
  20. Acknowledge the breakdowns. They’re usually followed by breakthroughs!
  21. Say something new. Notice your stories, then create new ones.
  22. Everything is either giving you energy or draining it. Choose your activities wisely.
  23. Look for the gold. What is perfect about what’s going on?
  24. Give up your expectations. Anticipate what you want instead.
  25. Stop listening to your Lizard Brain. Fight for what you believe in.
  26. Consider the worst case scenario. Now get real (it’s usually much better.)
  27. Notice you’re doing your best, especially when you think you are not.
  28. Express your love for what you do. The world needs more of that.
“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” – Howard Thurman

Task: Pick something from this list and try it on for a few days. Then pick another. Have some fun with this and watch love bloom – first with yourself, then with your customers, leaving them surprised, delighted and wanting more.

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Showing 6 comments
  • Kirsty Hall
    Reply

    Awesome post, Sandi – just what I needed to hear today. I’d been struggling to get into the Customer Love mindset this time around and so much of this resonated.

  • Sandi Amorim
    Reply

    It resonated for me as I was writing it (sometimes, it’s really hard to take your own coaching!) Thing is, we’ve gotta do better at loving ourselves to make the kind of difference we want to make with our work for others. It’s not really negotiable, ya know?

  • Vas Littlecrow
    Reply

    Thank you for the reminder! Heavens knows we need it as entrepreneurs.

    • Sandi Amorim
      Reply

      You’re absolutely right Vas, we ALL need reminders!

  • Phyllis
    Reply

    I love the line : “You can have your reasons or your results.” Hitting close to home there.

    • Sandi Amorim
      Reply

      I love that line too Phyllis! One of my first mentors many years ago said that to me and stopped me in my tracks!

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