“So what do you want?”
That is a question I must ask people a dozen times a week.
I ask it when I meet with folks who are considering working with me, so I can learn more about them and if I’m the right person to help them. I ask it of my private clients so I can help them design their custom plan to build their business.
Then one of three things happens.
First, if they’re running their business as a full-time job, meaning it’s not just for some extra cash but a way to pay all their bills, AND they haven’t yet reached this mark, their answer is always: $100,000.
Now I understand reaching $100,000 as a goal on the way to something bigger, but these folks literally mean that they want to make $100,000 as their ultimate goal.
There are two problems with that answer. First and foremost, it’s not their number – and if this is what came to mind for you, I will tell you: it’s not your number either.
$100,000 is what polite Midwesterners (usually women!!!) feel that they are allowed to want without being greedy or overly “money-driven.”
I would actually prefer if someone told me they wanted to make $92,674 because then I would know that number really meant something to them. It had been thought out and represented something specific to that person.
Second, they will go through a whole barrage of phrases before they even consider answering my question about how “money isn’t everything” or “I’m more concerned with helping my clients.” You get the idea.
Somebody please find the person running around making people think that making money and helping people are mutually exclusive things! I need to have a serious talk with them!!
No! Making money and helping people are absolutely NOT mutually exclusive. In fact, you can actually help more people when you have money than if you’re struggling to pay your mortgage each month.
One of my overarching driving goals is to donate $1 million to wildlife rescue. I will never be able to come even close to that if I’m not out there making some money.
Imagine how many more people you could help if you had extra money available to do so.
Finally, the third thing that happens is people will tell me one thing that they want, and then default to an entire list of things that they don’t want.
This part of the problem really has two parts to it. The first part is just another version of what I have already been talking about when you grow up thinking that it’s bad or wrong to want money.
But the second part of this version of the answer to “what do you want” is heart wrenching. I say that because I’ve been there.
It’s the part of the answer where people don’t have any idea of what they want because somewhere along the way they stopped dreaming and they stopped wanting.
My first experience with hiring a coach was what I later came to discover was due to exactly this problem. I was working so hard trying to build a business and then it felt like suddenly I had no idea why I was even there. All it felt like was a ton of hard work with no purpose other than to get through the next day.
It’s a horrible feeling when you realize there is nothing that you want – and not because you have everything but because you let go of being allowed to want anything.
So here’s the good news. This is all fixable!!
It takes some work to reprogram our brains but right here right now, I’m going to take the first steps with you and not only draw your attention to the error in thinking that it’s “bad” to want something. Allow me to be the first person to give you permission, and unlimited support, in your drive to recapture and then go all-freaking-out for what you want!
So I ask again, “What do you want?”.