Weird times. I can confidently say that none of us have been through a situation like our current pandemic related shut in. While people have certainly gone through similar issues with contagions, it’s never been at a time where we have continual access to information. For those of us who are primarily service providers as therapists, our business model is temporarily being rocked by shelter in place orders and attempts to limit contact with others to help the most medically vulnerable in our population.
After a temporary “feel all the feels” weekend and attempts to seek whatever control I could in an out of control situation (primarily that consisted of me cleaning my house and organizing the pantry), it dawned on me that my fear for my work was rooted in scarcity. When we are in scarcity mindset, we see a limit to resources. Biologically, our brains are wired to survive in an environment with scarce resources–we store, we hoard, we worry that there won’t be enough. Hence, my pantry organization strategy as a self-soothing tool, wired into human DNA to make sure that we have enough.
While scarcity keeps us safe, scarcity is a difficult place from which to run a thriving, growing, adapting, and resilient business. And that is exactly what we all need right now. We need to stay committed to the core values of our business and use creativity and our inherent resiliency to move into abundance. When there is a sea change in the world around us, businesses have the option to stay with their old way and struggle along, or to adapt and meet changing needs in the market. It’s at this maybe scary edge where growth occurs. It’s at this edge where we find abundance.
Are you mired in scarcity right now? Give yourself the space to feel the feels, to stockpile your groceries, to scream that a pandemic was not part of your business plan. Then find that little spark of resilience deep in your core and turn up the gas to light a fire. Struggling to figure out your next steps? Here are some ideas on how to ignite your abundance.
We all need connection. A deeply social species, even the most introverted among us is wired to connect with other human beings. As an entrepreneur and business owner, not to mention mental health provider, you are no exception, and neither are your ideal clients. Check in with your people–both your personal people (family, friends) and your business people (clients, colleagues). Figure out unique ways to connect. If you typically connect through written words, try to connect by phone or video. If you’re feeling stress, so are your people, and personal connection can reduce that load.
Connecting with your clients for therapy is going to take on a new twist unless you have already been using telehealth. We are quickly going to see most providers convert their practices to video based services. While this may not be possible for some aspects of assessment only practices, most of us can convert for therapy and consultation services. We can also use video to provide resources and help our clients connect to resources for support and leisure. We can connect with colleagues over video to network, to commiserate, and to stay professionally connected.
Totally new to using video? Check out my mini-course: Video in Private Practice. Over 100 minutes of video in digestible modules with two downloadable guides to use video for networking, marketing, presentations, and covering the business aspects of distance therapy. You can find it here and use the code 10OffMarch through the end of the month for a $10 discount to make the course just $19!
Resilience: Creativity and Abundance
Once I recognized my surge of fear as scarcity showing up, I started looking for opportunities to move into abundance. By just asking myself the question of how do I move forward and how do I help others move forward, I felt connected to some of my core values: creativity and service. Turning into abundance, I recognized that these massive changes in the world can be a catalyst for growth.
How can you continue to grow your practice during uncertain times requiring creative ways to connect? Video is clearly a preferred option for face to face work right now. Take some time to increase your video competence. You can also take some extra time to update your materials and engage in strategic planning. All the things that you can’t get to when you’re busy? Right now is the time to do them with an eye for how our current situation may require you to pivot. Work on increasing your fluency and skill in distance therapy, and kick some of your CE requirements while you’re at it! Need a personalized approach to the journey your business may need to move along right now? Schedule a clarity call with me to explore how coaching can support your work during this time of change in your business.
For most of us in relationship based businesses and especially as mental health providers, service to others is a cherished value. Perhaps at no other time in our careers do our people need our service. Think about your particular clients. You are an expert in your ideal clients and their needs. (If you need a crash course in understanding your ideal client, download my free guide, which you can find here). Channel the voice of your ideal client and ask yourself what they need right now. Do they need support? Do they need connection? Do they need increased therapy appointments? Do they need resources for at home entertainment, education, and distraction?
Once you’ve a better idea of what your ideal clients need, figure out how to get that information to them. Use your website, your blog, video platforms and video content on your website. I’ve been using telehealth for therapy for two plus years and I have to say, I absolutely love it. I am EXCITED to bring that energy for telehealth to my in-office clients and transition them at least temporarily into a different modality of connection.
Finally, how do you bring that value of service to yourself? What do you need and how can you provide yourself with what you need with great self-compassion? Find the ways you can take action in alignment with your unique value system to support yourself, your family, and your community.
I am planning a great deal of content to share with you over the upcoming weeks. Be sure to join my facebook group and connect through my member portal to subscribe to my email list. Reach out with questions, ideas, and if you would like to set up a no obligation coaching call. We’re in this together and we can support each other as we grow.