4. Envision Your Role As A Parent Coach

Five Years From Now?

It is important to have a vision of your future when you design your parent coach business plan and marketing strategy as a parent coach. Here is a checklist to spark innovative thoughts for your business.

  • How big do you want your business to grow?
  • How much time can you devote to it now, and five years from now?
  • What hours of the day do you want to work now, and once your business is going?
  • Are you going to take phone calls all hours of the day and night?
  • Are you going to take evening clients? In parent coaching, many clients will want evening or weekend appointments.  Can you accommodate them?
  • What hours do you want to relax with your family?

Take the time to write down a schedule of your ideal week, including time for relaxation and taking care of your health. Whether you are single or married, whether your children are in college or are toddlers, come up with a personalized design that allows you to meet your family obligations and your own needs to relax and grow as a person.

If your best moments come when you are in nature, plan your week so you have that time to spend in nature and to reconnect with yourself. Don’t let go of what most satisfies your own soul because of business obligations.

As a coach to families, people regard you as a role model. You have to model a healthy integration of work and family for your clients. If you don’t succeed, how can you expect help others succeed?

In the beginning being a parent coach you will focus primary energy into marketing and networking, which are usually unpaid tasks to build into your business plan.

Fill your heart and mind with optimism as you network and market your parent coaching practice. Your positive attitude and caring are what attract people to work with a parent coach. The image you reflect when you show up is much more important than any piece of sheepskin.

When small businesses fail, it is usually because of lack of planning and design. When you create your coaching business, be sure you have realistic expectations about how much time you can devote to it now and in the future. Develop a schedule for today and five years from now. If you work out of your house, build clear separations between your personal life and your business. Do this by only working certain hours, shutting the business down regularly for personal time, and by having a work place clearly separate from your living area.

Now if you are looking right ahead into the future, it’s now the time to take step toward that goal or desired future.  If you are not a parent coaching already, look into our certifications for parent coaching but if you are already a parent coach and you are looking for someone to show you all the steps to make your coaching business successful, signup for our course Successful Business Set-up in systemized steps to skyrocket your startup today.

Successful Business Set-up in systemized steps

certifications for parent coaching

Parent Coaching Is An Empowerment Model

Parent Coaching is an  empowerment model to support a parent's finding their answers and solving their problems through coaching questions and conversations. This is in contrast to the psychotherapy areas.

Within the psychotherapy and counseling domains, a client employs a professional with a degree in psychology, counseling, or medicine. Often the sessions are held at the therapist’s office. An insurance company may pay the invoice.

Often the sessions are held at the therapist’s office. An insurance company may pay the invoice. This is a medical model:

  • The doctor or therapist has a  “practice"”
  • Is employed to treat people for their mental health issues or personality disorder.
  • A third party like insurance may cover the cost of these services.

In psychotherapy, the assumption is to treat the symptoms and underlying causes. For example, a client may enter psychotherapy because he gets into fights at work with his supervisors. After a few sessions in which he brings up his past and talks about his possible causes that contribute to the fights, the client realizes that he is repeating problems he had with his parents with his boss. In fact, he realizes that he has deliberately chosen a boss who reminds him of his father.

In Coaching

The underlying assumption in a coaching session is that the client is well and resourceful and can handle his or her life.

If this same client were to hire a coach, the coach would ask empowering questions and challenge his thinking about handling the boss issues. A coach does not delve into a client’s past, but focuses on the present time, issue or goal and future steps.

I was a licensed therapist, and I like coaching better. In coaching, the client is whole, resourceful, and ready for change. Yet, the model in therapy is that the client is broken. As a therapist, I used to only listen and never give my opinion. Sometimes I felt as if I could be replaced by a mannequin.”

…Mark Brandenberg

In coaching, the WHY is not as important! Coaches deal with the HOW.  Parent Coaches listen to goals, problems, or issues and with encouragement and expertise partner in discovering solutions or supporting transformations.

Therapy is about looking backwards. Coaching is about working with today. We deal with what is now.

… Jill Herman

Coaches review a client’s strengths and focus on them. The medical/psychological establishment focuses on problems and pathology. We look at wellness and not what is broken. If a coach finds a true pathology, the coach refers that person to a psychologist or other appropriate specialist. Troubled persons with long-standing problems may not think rationally and require a different therapeutic approach.

In parent coaching, the model is that the client is whole, healthy, and wants to achieve goals. He is open to discussion, brainstorming, and looking to the future, not the past.

Dr. Caron Goode

Dr. Caron Goode

Founder--Academy for Coaching Parents International

When It’s More Than Teen Angst: Differentiating Between Situational and Clinical Depression

"Teenagers are known for their angst and moodiness. You really can’t blame them with all that’s going on in their lives from physical changes and peer pressure to academic expectations and the formation of relationships."  Tyler Jacobison (Twitter | Linkedin

Feeling moody and grouchy once in a while is normal. Trouble begins when these feelings become more intense, persisting for weeks, months or even longer. Teen depression is an uncomfortable reality in our society and it’s up to parents to support and help their affected teens.

Situational vs. Clinical Depression

You can help your child by first identifying the difference between situational and clinical depression, their causes and treatment methods.

Situational depression (also known as adjustment disorder) occurs in the aftermath of monumental or traumatic changes in an individual’s life. In teens, situational depression can be triggered by parents’ divorce, a breakup from a romantic relationship, death of a loved one, academic struggles or even moving to a new area. Keep in mind that situational depression is temporary and things should go back to normal once the stressors are removed or your teen learns to cope with them.

In the meantime though, their symptoms are very real and are similar to those of chronic depression. They include:

  1. Persistent feelings of sadness, anxiety, worthlessness or hopelessness.
  2. Changes in sleeping patterns –either difficulties in falling asleep or oversleeping.
  3.  Changes in eating patterns, loss of appetite and weight changes.
  4.  Loss of interest in hobbies, studies and life in general.
  5. Persistent lethargy and fatigue.
  6. Difficulties concentrating, making decisions or remembering tasks.
  7. Self-harming or suicide attempts.

 

Clinical depression, on the other hand, is more severe and is thought to be caused by a complex mix of brain chemical imbalances, genetic factors and social situations. It causes major long-term depressive symptoms that are pervasive enough to interfere with your teen’s daily life.

Different Treatment Approaches

The treatment your teen requires depends on the type of depression they have.

Managing Situational Depression

● Urge your teen to continue pursuing their hobbies and other leisure activities.
● Also, encourage them to eat a nutritionally well-balanced diet and get regular exercise to stimulate the production of dopamine to boost their mood.
● Joining a support group or talking out the situation with close friends and relatives can also help.
● If all else fails, seek the help of a trained psychotherapist.
Managing Clinical Depression
● Psychotherapy is a crucial part of helping your teen deal with clinical depression. Get feedback on their progress to ensure that the therapist you engage is the right fit.
● Appropriate medication in tandem with therapy will provide the best outcome for your teen. The medication might be for short or long-term use depending on the diagnosis.
● Hospitalization in a psychiatric facility might also be necessary especially if your teen is self-harming, suicidal or showing signs of delusion or psychosis.

With proper coaching, parents can learn responsive parenting skills that will help them discern behavioral issues that may predispose their teens to depression as well as learn how to assist their children to get over rough patches in their lives.

GUEST AUTHOR: Tyler Jacobson is a proud father, husband, writer and outreach specialist with experience helping parents and organizations that help troubled teen boys. Tyler has focused on helping through honest advice and humor on: modern day parenting, struggles in school, the impact of social media, addiction, mental disorders, and issues facing teenagers now. Follow Tyler on: Twitter | LinkedIn

 

Mindset Matters 2 – Control Mindset and Emotions

Mindset is about how you think and use your mental focus. The term emotions refer to your feelings, and each affects the other. -Emotion intertwines with moodtemperamentpersonalitydisposition, and motivation.

Emotions and Strength

Want strength, then rile up your emotions like Norse warriors of long  ago. The warriors were so called because they created fist of anger before entering the battlefield. They caused adrenaline to pump to prepare to win a war. In this agitated state, they felt  invulnerable and accomplished feats of incredible strength.

Under extreme stress or emotional overwhelm,  your body produces excess amounts of testosterone, adrenaline and cortisol. These hormones increase you heart rate, focus, awareness and muscle tone for the extra strength.

Use Your Emotional Strength for Calm, Collected Focus

Calm, collected focus is about creating and being in a "flow state."

 We also call flow by several descriptors:

  • Being in the zone or fully immersed mental state.
  • Feeling of energized focus
  • Full involvement
  • Complete absorption of in what one does
  • Results that are focused, engaged, maybe losing track of time.

A flow state is a feeling of calm, focused bliss, like in extreme sports when athletes persofrm effortlessly.Or like in music where the melody or the rhythm moves a person to sing or to dance.

No fear. No doubt. No bursts of anger or unwanted emotion.

You do your best work in a flow state. This is when we are happiest.

Do you try to live your life as much as possible. The problem is that you may have anxiety or stay overly  busy with chores and things we need to do. These limitations leave you stressed, anxious or busy and they take you out of the moment. You face a challenge when your body and mind  cannot possibly be in-sync when you are worrying.

Entering flow means being in the moment which not only makes you happy and confident, it also makes you unstoppable. You take control over your emotions.

Taking Control Through Full Wave Breath

So how do you take back control over your emotions?

  1. Check into how you feel, especially if your energy is low,  or you you are distracted or even in a bad mood. 
  2. To change your mood, I suggest Full-Wave Breathing to change your physiology in the literal sense. 
  3. If you learn to breathe correctly (using belly breathing to fill the lower portion of the lungs, then the upper portion). If  you use slow, controlled breaths, then you will be able to lower your heart rate, blood pressure, and calm your entire body.
  4. This will change your parasympathetic tone, taking you out of ‘fight or flight’ and into ‘rest and digest’. Try it the next time you feel overly stressed, overly competitive or worked up after an intense workout – your heart rate will slow and your mind will grow calmer.
  5. For your mental framework, another tool to use is called CBT---‘Cognitive Behavioral Therapy’ and this is a popular form of psychotherapeutic intervention used to treat phobias and other anxiety disorders.Take the intention of CBT strategies to look at the content of your thoughts. The self-talk that you give yourself to work yourself into a panic, or to calm yourself down. If you are thinking things like “I’m worried I might fall off that ledge” then of course you are going to be scared. If you think things like “I’m grateful for my friends” then you will be less likely to feel unhappy with where you are in life. You can use CBT to challenge long-held beliefs and to break negative self-talk habits by challenging your thoughts and testing your hypotheses. This is called ‘cognitive restructuring’.
  6. In the short term, you can use CBT techniques in order to more honestly assess your state of mind and your emotions and to then change the way you feel about a situation.So if you were stressed that you had a deadline you couldn’t meet and it was ruining your evening, then you might use cognitive restructuring in order to assess the thoughts making you stressed and replace them with more productive ones.For example, you might consider:
    • What is the point of being stressed? Will it make matters better?
    • What’s the worst case scenario? Would it really be that bad to tell the boss you can’t finish work on time? Are they expecting too much of you anyway?
    • When was the last time you did this?
    • Are there other ways you could lessen the blow?
    • What would you rather pay attention to right now?

    Combine this with controlled breathing and bring your focus to the thing that is most useful to you right now.

    In the long term, you can use CBT in order to bridge the gap between your thoughts and your physiology. You see, your physiology and your emotions are designed to drive you toward desirable states: sex, food, shelter, love, success, social acceptance.

Your Coaching Mindset Matters Series

What makes coaches so credible with clients and successful in business? Charisma, experience, and expertise are at the top of the list. However, the one attribute which is critical to personal relationships and professional success is mindset.

 

MINDSET: the established set of attitudes a person holds 

 

Mindset - A Way To Foresee and Plan Your Financial and Big Goals

It's true. In every action you take in business or life, your mindset is a pervasive determining factor which influences your success. Your coaching plans require the same foundation, a fresh viewpoint and about people, money, and solutions. 

Here are examples of how a stressed or unconscious mindset could work.

1. You know that helping everybody would be great for business. The solution would be to define your audience by temperament, income level, and initial problems you could solve. This allows you to plan for the right ideal customer and learn how to market to their needs and values. 

2. You set a sliding scale in a good-hearted effort to turn away no one that you could help.

While deserving and lovely, clients are less than your ideal persona when it comes to their ability to pay. You plan for your successful business first, and you create a financial plan to meet your goals, and your planning for your clients' needs.]

  • Will you scale your financial levels  so you earn more than what you need.
  • Can you meet your budget with a lower-end scale? Yes, possibly with a group program or class.
  • Would this client enter into private coaching? Did they value your work and you?

Before you realize your dreams of four-or-five-figure clients, insure that your mindset helps you be open, focused, compassionate, or playful and personal, depending on your temperament.

  • If you are a caring, heart-oriented supporter, your coaching strengths are:
    Being able to reframe other's doubts,
    Listening to one's story,
    Modeling the best conversation for the positive parenting with your client's kids.
  • If you are a charismatic influencer, you inspire those who admire you because
    Your nature is gregarious
    You enjoy people, and they appreciate your friendliness
    You are an excellent example of creativity in action and brainstorming.
  • If you are an achiever-type coach, your coaching could challenge others
    To tackle the project they've ignored
    To commit to the exercise routine they need
    To manage finances better
    To plan the product launch sooner than later
  • If you are the kind of coach who strategizes, your primary strength is solving people's problems This makes you an excellent consultant. In coaching, you can ask the right questions to help a client strategize:

What is the result you want?
What is the first step you would take to get there?
Can you outline the process?
What resources will you need?

In coaching, you are often the cheerleader for your clients, and gratitude will be a quality that you want your customers to have. In coaching, you expend energy being with your customer. If you find yourself complaining or fatigued, what will you do to better care for you?

Growing Your Confidence

What top-end coaches have in common is confidence. They believe in what they do. They believe in their ability to help others achieve the same thing. They walk on stage or join a webinar filled with the knowledge that what they are about to say will change the lives of those who are listening.

That is confidence!

When you feel confident, you radiate knowing and strengths. Just like how the person you're talking to on the phone can hear a smile in your voice, your potential clients can sense your mindset. 

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Niche Research In Planning Your Digital Business

Use this checklist to ensure you do not miss any valuable steps in planning a successful business. Your niche research gives you a solid foundation, and your market can grow exponentially.

 

Niche Research

Choosing your niche is one of the most important decisions you ever make in your business. Remember to take plenty of time to conduct thorough niche research in this area. Here are some things to keep in mind:

The niche research I’ve chosen:
  • Is interesting
  • Is something I’m passionate about
  • Is profitable
  • Is evergreen (it has year-round interest)
  • It has a sense of urgency with lots of customers looking for real solutions to their problems.
I’ve considered my goals for this business, and I know:
  • What I want to achieve with this business.
  • How much money I want to earn.
I’ve determined my marketing strategy, and I have to decide:
  • Will I be targeting the global market?
  • Will I  be targeting the local market?
  • Which countries have the most interest in the niche and related topics?
  • What are the top problems people in this niche have?
  • Which solutions are people seeking?
I also have prepared in this way:
  • A list of related search suggestions to help me plan future content and possible ads
  • A list of  trending  hot topics
  • A list of existing tried-and-true  products (solutions) that stand the test of time as well as rising/trendy products
  • My list of keywords
  • Information on pay-per-click ads to help me generate marketing and ad ideas.
  • Details on how widespread the niche is with advertisers

 

Next‎

Personalize Your Online Marketing Strategy

Every online business today should have a strong online presence. You then personalize your online marketing strategy. This will allow you to potentially reach out to more customers than you would with regular marketing methods. A solid online strategy will allow you to increase your business image, send more traffic to your site and promote customer awareness.

There are various marketing strategies that you should implement to achieve this. Use the following tips to help you plan a strategy that will give you results.

Develop a Marketing Message

You should work on creating methods that clearly project your marketing message. This needs to be done in such a way that your audience clearly knows what message you are sending. Work on understanding what your message is first, then practice writing it out so that it becomes super clear.

Who is Your Target Market?

This aspect is vital and should not be overlooked. Take the time to research who it is your products or services are targeting. It is not always the group that you first had in mind.  Learn how they operate, how they think, their wants and desires. By doing this you will discover ways that you can easily market to them. Without this knowledge your marketing strategy will not be as successful as it could be.

Discovering Your Options

Any good business will know what their options are and how to put them into play. No matter how great your online marketing strategy is, it will eventually come to a standstill. By having options in place, you can simply move on to the next thing.

Be Consistent

A good marketing strategy will offer consistency. This includes ensuring that your branding and any promotional materials are all consistent. This way your potential customers will know who is sending the message. Use the same image and logo across all of your social sites. Keep the branding in place on your website or blog. Eventually customers will associate this look with your business name.

Always Follow Up

As well as following up with your customers you need to follow up with your online marketing strategies. This way you can identify which methods were successful or not. You will then know what areas of your business need tweaking or changing completely, and what methods to keep in place.

If you take the time to include all of these points into your marketing strategy, you will have a well thought out plan in place. You will know how to communicate with your audience and you will know who it is you are targeting with your messages.

By having a good marketing strategy in place your business will prosper and grow. So take the time to put yours into place today.

Coach Online–Marketing Tips and Ideas to Make Money Online

To make money online as a parent-family coach or an ACPI Trainer, you need to market your business online. The following marketing tips and ideas will guide your marketing efforts.

  1. When you decide who you want to work with, keep narrowing down your ideal client to a specific niche or group. Don’t send a marketing message to a general group. Specifically target the demographic you want to work with.

Narrow it down like this example:  Dads....of teens....preparing to graduate from high school....who need a Core Temperament Inventory.....to consider career choices.

2.  Talk about your business everywhere. Network with prospective clients. Give speeches at conferences. Clearly articulate your value when talking about your business in a video presentation for online viewing. 

3. Write about your business in blog posts, newsletters, magazines and newspapers. A case study presents your strengths in helping a client. You could also discuss group coaching and when and how you offer services. Sell value! Send out a press release when you add a new service or you are just starting your business.

4. Be active on social media. Participate by answering questions, providing helpful information and being authentic. Over the last three years and the changes made to social media offering, Facebook still remain primary. Facebook also bought Instagram, and placing an ad on both sites bring traffic to you and your web site. 

5. Create a professional looking website. Include your services, testimonials and an about you page as well as the home page. 

6. While I do not advocate free sessions, you will notice in reading blogs that it is a popular way to meet new possible clients. Give away a free coaching session and see which  prospective clients  go on to purchase a bigger package.

7. Build a strong client list. Keep in contact with them, asking for referrals and testimonials.

8. Send out a regular newsletter and update your blog regularly.

9. Comment on other blogs and social media channels with relevant information. These types of connections, formed through social media, are reciprocated when you support others and ask for the same. 

10. Get interviewed by a well-known person in your niche. Promote your coaching services during the interview.

11. Create YouTube videos with helpful information. Include links to your coaching services.

12. Include a link to your website on everything, including your email signature.

Marketing is a necessity in any business for making money online. It is how clients will find you.

The Next Step

Making money online with your coaching business can be done in many ways. It’s about how you package yourself as an expert, the marketing plan you create to get the word out about your services and the different types of services and products you offer. Your next step is to decide on your market, plan out your marketing, determine how you are going to make money, and begin attracting clients.

1. Parent Coaching

Does Parent Coaching interest you as a profession or an extra source of income? This series about coaching parents provides all you need to know about what is involved in the real profession of coaching. You have a story to tell which defines your interest and happiness in helping people.

People pay coaches to help them reach their goals by encouraging, celebrating, and listening to them on a regularly scheduled basis.  Sessions might be for individuals or for groups.. A coach is an empowerment expert who challenges, stimulates, questions, and holds the client in positive regard. A coach takes the side of the clients and helps them set long and short-term goals, and holds them accountable to take necessary steps to achieve the goals from week to week. The coaching process enables people to lead more effective lives,  and to achieve what they want more quickly. Here is what two top coaches say about their field:

   "You have to have a plan and it has to be a plan that works.  You should not settle for the mediocre in life.  Coaching helps you set goals.  I collaborate with my clients.  I am on their side.  As a coach, I help and strategize with my clients so they can achieve their goals. [bctt tweet="Coaching is about personal evolution, vision, what’s next, what’s now, and moving forward. It’s about having standards, not settling for the mediocre in life, but looking and feeling your best." …Annemarie Brown" username="parent_coach"]

"Coaching is about listening, empathizing, asking questions and sharing love. It is very personal, very individual and case-by-case. People can turn their problems around.  They can be whatever they want.  They can have whatever they want. Coaching is about that process.  You help them and it is an incredible job."    Peggy Alvarado

Coaching Started In Business

Coaching as a profession started in corporate businesses, but also takes its models from counseling and psychotherapy. Business managers have always been “coaches” in that they helped people clarify their goals and choose roles in the corporation that best suited their talents and strengths.  Many life coaches, if they do not come from a background in psychotherapy or counseling, originally worked in business.

   I worked in management for thirteen years in a Fortune 500 company. Human resource management is very similar to coaching.  I didn’t know I was coaching back then, but I was!  … Peggy Alvarado

Businesses paid the first coaches to guide new hires as they climbed the corporate ladder.  A coach could be internal, someone who works for the same business as the client; or external like someone who is hired by the business as an outside consultant.  These first coaches were called business mentors. A coach or mentor is an older person with a lot of experience in the same field of the beginner.  The coach guides the new hire to set career goals, interact with other people, and choose the right projects to advance themselves. In the 1980s, businesses started routinely to hire and pay for more outside coaches.

Today, a business coach at the top of his field can earn as much as $700 tp $1000 per hour, or well into six figures per year.  Some large corporations keep coaches on retainer, paying them so much a month to mentor a constant stream of new hires.  A new trend is to hire a coach for a specific job, such as “Improve morale in the accounting department within a three- month-time period.”

Because business coaches work with each person on a one-to-one basis and take into consideration each individual’s personality and style, they are very successful in helping people achieve goals and move up in their careers quickly. A coach expert listens within, has only the best interest of that particular client in mind. The relationship is confidential and trustworthy.

The coaching model was so successful on a business level that a demand arose for personal “life coaches” as well.  A life coach or personal coach is a person who helps a client set goals for his or her future, determine steps to reach each goal, and cheer the person as he or she moved toward his or her definition of success. The goals do not have to be about money or career, but can be goals like “To become closer to my husband,” “To make time for painting,” or simply “To have more fun.”

Unlike business coaches, a life coach for parents could work over the telephone instead of face-to-face in an office setting.

The average personal coach charges above $100 per hour, but the range of fees is from a low of $25 to a high of $300 or more. A personal coach at the top of the field can make in the range of six to seven figures per year range, but the vast majority of coaches earn about $40,000 to $80,000 annually, depending on their part-time or full-time focus in the coaching field.

Coaching Moved away From The Medical Model

In 1992, Thomas Leonard started the first training institute for coaches.  His “Coach University” trained people through teleconferences.  In the same year, Laura Whitworth founded The Coaches Training Institute in San Francisco, which provided training through weekend universities.  Whitworth’s association, the Personal and Professional Coaches Association, merged with Leonard’s International Coach Federation (ICF) in 1997. The ICF organization developed standards of ethics and practices for the profession.

Yet from the beginning of the coaching profession, there was a lot of overlap between psychotherapy and coaching.  For one thing, many people entering the new field of coaching had backgrounds as therapists or business. Yet in time, coaching has moved away from the medical model.

Isn’t it great that you don’t have to be a psychologist or a medical professional to be a parent coach? Let’s take a look at our parent coaching certifications and get going on the way to success:

Parent-Family Coaching Programs

Dr. Caron Goode

Dr. Caron Goode

Founder of the Academy for Coaching Parents

CHECK OUT THIS NEW ONLINE COACHING PROGRAM

FOR PARENTING AND FAMILIES

Free Course–Step Seven–Setting Boundaries

Even with a clear communication plan and format in place, your client may push the limits. Setting boundaries is a primary task for your peach of mind and your client's best coaching experience.  

  • Clients may keep you on the phone longer than you intended
  • They will email you more than is allowed
  • They might text you for non-emergencies
  • They will send you messages on Facebook, on Twitter, on Voxer, or anywhere else that is convenient for them—regardless of your preferences

Does This Work Both Ways?

Are you tempted to reach out on the weekend to answer a question or schedule a call on a Sunday afternoon because that's when your client is available. You might think this is good business—after all, you're building a relationships.

The idea is not the best for you. The situation will lead to burn out because your boundaries are weak.  You'll always feel like you must do more for your clients. Sooner or later, you'll lose touch with your own health and personal space.

Setting boundaries is the answer for both you and your customers. Establish from the outset exactly what your coaching package includes, and be sure to include when contact takes place.

 For example, you might say:

Your coaching package includes one monthly, 50-minute phone call with me and one question by email each working day.

 My workdays are Monday through Thursday from 10 am to 4 pm Eastern, and I'll answer all calls and emails during that time.

With this format, you are setting boundaries and have included 

  • What the client gets (one phone call and once daily emails)
  • When she gets it (Monday through Thursday from 10 am to 4 pm)

You’ll also need to establish exactly how your clients should contact you, and what will happen if they do not follow the procedures. Setting boundaries includes  specific email addresses and phone numbers or conference lines exclusively for your client use.

Another step is to create “planned responses” to send out when a client attempts to contact you outside of your established boundaries.. For example, if you receive a Facebook message (and you don’t offer this as a form of contact) you might respond with:

Thank you for reaching out, and I'm happy to help you with this big issue. For better organization of my client files, though, I do ask that you send all your questions to my email address at yourname@yourdomain.com.

A gentle reminder for setting boundaries creates a better coaching relationship for both of you.

To keep phone calls shorter, use a simple kitchen timer. At the start of the call, tell your client, "We have XX minutes today, so I'm going to set a timer for YY minutes to remind us when it's almost time to end. That will help ensure I can answer all your questions."

Then set your timer for 5 minutes before the call is to end. When the timer goes off, let your client know you have 5 minutes remaining, and ask if she has any final questions before you hang up. Following this simple system will prevent those endless phone calls that trample all forms of boundaries. 

Resist the temptation to allow calls to be booked outside of your working hours, or to respond to questions on the weekend, or to book additional appointments "just this once." 

Doing so will make it appear to your client that your boundaries are flexible, and will invite them to push the limits as well. After all, if you email on the weekend, it must be ok, right?

 

Exercise: Map Your Work Hours

 

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat

6am

 

Exercise: Craft Your Boundary Responses

How will you set the expectation at the start of a call, so it does not run too long?

How will you respond if a client contacts you outside your established system?

What will you tell yourself when you fail to respect your own boundaries?