Episode 14: [Coaching Call] Embracing a Coaching Mindset with Lisa Battle-Gwathney

In this special coaching call, we're exploring the strategy AND the mindset behind marketing a coaching practice. Listen in!
Embracing a Coaching Mindset - Coach with Clarity Podcast

14: [Coaching Call] Embracing a Coaching Mindset with Lisa Battle-Gwathney

I'm so happy that you are joining me for another coaching call! These episodes are some of my very favorites because it allows me to give you a taste of the behind the scenes work in a coaching practice. This hot seat coaching session was with one of my Coach With Clarity members, Dr. Lisa Battle-Gwathney.

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Show Notes

I'm so happy that you are joining me for another coaching call! These episodes are some of my very favorites because it allows me to give you a taste of the behind the scenes work in a coaching practice.

This hot seat coaching session was with one of my Coach With Clarity members, Dr. Lisa Battle-Gwathney. In the session, Lisa went from wanting to clarify her ideal client profile, to diving into mindset issues around visibility, to addressing those issues and creating an action plan she is aligned with that will help her to move forward. I'm so grateful to Lisa for allowing me to share it with all of you.

Lisa Battle-Gwathney is a mindset/mindfulness coach who supports highly educated women in living intentionally with balance. Lisa began her career as a licensed psychologist and continues to practice within her private practice.

I took a lot from this session with Lisa and I know you will find a lot of helpful nuggets you can apply as you continue to build your own practice.

Topics covered

  • Lisa’s ideal client profile
  • The unique insights provided by the pandemic
  • How Lisa’s offer has adapted to her clients’ “new normal”
  • Reframing how connects with her ideal clients
  • Why I view social media as a platform to nurture relationships
  • How you should think about building the know-like-trust factor with your ideal clients
  • Leveraging your strengths to become more visible
  • How your internal messaging shows up in your day-to-day
  • What intentionality means in building your coaching practice
  • Why you should embrace the fear of putting yourself out there
  • How to authentically connect with podcasters
  • Lisa’s action plan for reaching her ideal clients

Resources mentioned

Now it’s time for you to show the world what it means to be a Coach with Clarity! Screenshot this episode and tag me on Instagram @coachwithclarity and let me know what you’re more excited to explore in future podcast episodes!

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Want to connect further? Follow me on Instagram and continue the discussion in the Coach with Clarity Facebook group.

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Well, hey there, my friend. Welcome back to the Coach with Clarity Podcast. I am your host Lee Chaix McDonough, and I'm so happy that you are joining me for another episode and another coaching call. These episodes are some of my very favorites because it allows me to share with you a little bit of the behind the scenes work that goes on in a coaching practice, and today you are going to get to listen in on one of the hot seat coaching sessions that occurred in the Coach with Clarity membership during the month of April 2020. 

I am so grateful that one of my members, Dr. Lisa Battle-Gwathney, was willing to let me share her experience on the hot seat with all of you. 

And the reason that I really wanted this particular coaching session to be shared on the podcast is because I think even within a 30-minute coaching session, you can really see the journey that Lisa goes on – from starting with clarifying who her audiences and who she wants to serve, moving into some mindset issues that emerge, having the space and the time to address those mindset issues, and then we're able to start talking about a targeted plan of action so that she can reach out and connect with the people she most wants to serve. So it is a fantastic coaching session, I'm so grateful to Lisa for allowing me to share it with all of you. 

I want to tell you a little bit about Lisa before we get going. She is a licensed psychologist and a mindset and mindfulness coach, and as a coach, she specializes in supporting highly educated females in living intentionally with balance. She's familiar with the idea of striving for success in all aspects of life and now her mission is to cultivate a space for women to re-envision their path to success. In addition to being a coach, Lisa also received her doctorate in counseling psychology, and she owns two businesses. She owns a counseling private practice called Enhancing Wellness Counseling and Consulting LLC, and she owns a coaching business, Beyond Great Coaching LLC. So you can learn more about Lisa and find links to her websites in the show notes, but now I am excited for you to learn more about Lisa and her coaching work through our Hot Seat Coaching Session. So let's get to it.

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LEE: So Lisa, thank you so much for being on the hot seat today. What is it that you'd like to talk about during our time together?

LISA: Today, I would like to talk about, like, finding my ideal client and serving them in the sense of like, selling but not just selling, giving the way that I've been giving, but taking it up a notch so that they know that they can go further in that relationship with me. 

LEE: So yes, excellent. All right. Tell me a little bit about your ideal client. 

LISA: Yeah, so Lee and I have talked before about this. Before, my ideal client was female doctors, but that has evolved and now I'm saying highly educated women. The biggest thing right now for me is focus on being intentional, an effort to have more balance in your life, and of course, balanced looks differently for different people, and a big piece of this is rooted from people who have went the traditional route, and now they may feel a little bit restricted.

LEE:  So we're really looking at highly educated, professional women, and what I'm picking up on from the last part, you said they went the traditional route, they did everything they were supposed to do, and now here they are today. Tell me a little bit about what they're thinking or feeling or how they're viewing their own life.

LISA: That's a great question, because when you say the word today what came up for me is COVID-19. I honestly think today as of “right now”, they're living their best life. 

LEE: Oh, tell me more. How come? 

LISA: Before COVID-19 all of us had to go to work, we had to manage like 10, 15 different things at the same time. And now you're working from home – if you have kids, then you can kind of like, be managing your kids while you're doing your work, and you can be working on outside projects. So it's almost like these women have created the atmosphere for this to be the perfect time. But it's short lived, because we'll eventually have to go back out into society. And so how do you figure out how to rebalance after having to leave again? Does that make sense?

LEE: It does make sense. It's really interesting, actually, because kind of baked into what you just described, is an ability by these women to take a difficult situation like quarantine, like not being able to go through kind of our normal day to day life, and actually turn that into an ideal outcome. So there's a level of resilience, there's a level of creativity that they're applying in order to kind of shape their current circumstances. I point that out because I think that's probably a strength of your ideal client, I think it's probably a strength of yours, but it may not be something that they're aware of. But you as the coach, you are aware of that hidden gift that they possess.

LISA: Yes, definitely. 

LEE: Okay. Tell me a little bit then about what life was like for them before COVID-19 or what it will be like once the restrictions are lifted, and we return to, I hesitate to say “normal”, but return to kind of a typical way of moving forward.


LISA: I think pre-COVID it was trying to get to the wherever you were, right. So whether that's the president of whatever institution you're in, or whether it's becoming a CEO of an organization, like trying to be the “creme de la creme”, and honestly feeling like you're never doing enough. You always have to stay busy, always have to be on the go, and no matter how much you accomplish, never truly being completely happy because it's almost like you always have to keep trying to go to the next level. I think post COVID-19, at the beginning, at least there will be some level of peace, because of the fact that they've had this time of balance, whatever that looks like, but I think the difficulty will be, it will be short lived. Eventually, you have to figure out how to manage your kids at home, how to manage if you started a business during this time, and you have a 40 hour job, you know, so having all these hands in different pots, and they're no longer in the same spot anymore.

LEE: So these are women who are highly ambitious, they were kind of going for the “brass ring”, like they wanted to get to the top of whatever the ladder looked like for them, but in the process of trying to make that happen there were a lot of maybe obstacles or difficulties in making it all work between profession, children, romantic relationships, friendships, social life, health, all of it. It just seemed like a lot. Interestingly COVID-19 has, in many ways, forced them to scale back on some of these things, and in scaling back, they've actually found some relief, and even some happiness, maybe that they weren't finding before.

LISA: Yeah, definitely.

LEE: All right. So that's really interesting. This is a unique situation because as a coach, you're getting glimpses of what these women want, and I'm curious how it's going to shape the offer that you have for them in terms of your coaching, how can you best support them through this transition and beyond?

LISA: That's a really good question. I think that's kind of how I evolved into the mindfulness/intentionality piece, because before COVID, I think I was more so about balance, in the sense of like, we need to get to a state of balance, and now they've been plotting it to a state of balance. So now is, how do we keep that going? Even post COVID.

LEE: Yeah, and what does balance look like?

LISA: I think for everybody is a different thing, so let's use myself as an example. Balance for me is setting up the life I'm going towards, while still having myself grounded in my current life. Basically, I have a 40 hour job, and I have two businesses on the side – I have my private practice for counseling, and then I have my coaching business – and I need all of those elements in order for me to feel balanced. Otherwise, I would feel like I was spiraling. To some people looks like chaos, but to me, it's like I need that security, but I also need the future I'm working towards.

LEE: And I think that really speaks, Lisa, to your core values as well, and you've already mentioned service and wanting service to be at the core of your work, and how you approach sales and making your offer but I hear a value about security as well and making sure all your ducks are in a row and you've got every setup. And then also maybe a slight kind of independent streak or a desire to kind of break out of the mold. The fact that you, yes, have a 40 hour, a week job, but you also have two businesses that you're building and growing – that, to me, suggests an entrepreneurial spirit there as well, and someone that wants to kind of break out of the boxes and try something new.

LISA: Yeah, I know, when I was doing the assessment, one of them is like, “freedom of expression”, and so I feel like that's kind of what is going on right now. I think the difficulty was, at one point, I just wanted to jump and go to the other extreme, but then I found myself freaking out because my feet were dangling in the air. And I'm like, “No, no, I still need the ground underneath me.


LEE: That makes a lot of sense. I'm smiling because I'm resonating with that. Alright, so I want to thank you because I feel like we have a really good idea of who your client is. So it's this professional, highly educated, woman, who's really striving to achieve. She's very ambitious, highly motivated, wants it all, and having a difficult time figuring out how to make it all work. And based on our discussions, I know the word balance comes up quite a bit for your clients. So through your coaching, you'll be partnering with them to help them clarify, what really do they want? What does that look like? What does balance look like for them creating their own individualized balanced plan, and ensuring that it connects with intentionality and with your client's core values? Does that sound like a summary of your approach?

LISA: Yes, that is spot on, but it is also what has led to the difficulty of finding my ideal clients because it looks so different for everybody in my world. So it's hard for me to speak to what the outcome will be without saying just a general blanket, “balance” because for everybody who walks out there results will look different.

LEE: Yes, although in many ways that can also be a strength because you are not providing a cookie cutter approach to navigating through life or pursuing coaching. You are taking the time to connect with each one of your potential clients to create something that's customized for them. I do see what you're saying in terms of, “How do I find clients when the end results are so different for each of them?”, but I also want to frame that potentially as an advantage that may set you apart in terms of how you pursue coaching and connecting with people having that individualized aspect I think is a real, real selling point. All right, let's talk about finding these ideal clients then. Let's start with what you've already tried. How have you been looking to connect with these women that you want to serve already?

LISA: I have Facebook, my Facebook business page, still have the two groups on Facebook – I know I was supposed to be letting those go, but I kept them. I have Instagram for my business. My newest endeavor has been LinkedIn, and I've really been trying to hone in on that and get it nicely put together. And then I'm still working on my website. So I have a couple of things out there. LinkedIn, I've mainly worked on the profile, I really have been holding off on the posting piece, because I want to start with intentionality and keep that consistent. Whereas Instagram and Facebook, I don't necessarily feel bad about if I had to delete what I've done today. But I kind of want LinkedIn to be like I'm putting out what I want to start with.

LEE: So it sounds like you are really focusing on social media, whether it's Facebook, Facebook groups, Instagram, LinkedIn, as well as building out your website. Can I share what comes up for me as I'm hearing you describe this? 

LISA: Yes. 

LEE: My thoughts about social media platforms, especially when someone is just starting out a coaching practice, is that they are a great way to nurture relationships. They are not necessarily the best tool for starting relationships. What I find is that people tend to come to our website or our social media platforms to connect with us after they're already aware of us. So either one of our colleagues or friends have made a connection or some sort of word of mouth referral, maybe they've seen you participate in other Facebook groups or on other social media platforms, but the way that they are first engaging with you is not typically on your own social media platform. It's elsewhere. So I love the idea of using social media as a way to nurture relationships, and when I talk about the “know/like trust factor”, when you are connecting with people first they need to know you, then they need to like you, then they need to trust you if they're going to invest in you. Social media, for me, is a key strategy for that middle phase, the “like” phase, so I think you've got that in spades. What I'm curious about though is how we are bringing people in, how they are initially getting to know you, so that you can then nurture them through your social media. Let me ask kind of how that sits with you and what your thoughts are.

LISA: I think that's spot on, and I have done some things in the past, but more on the counseling round. As far as the coaching round, I've been in talks about doing some things. So, for example, potentially doing a podcast or maybe YouTube channel, potentially doing like a mini-conference focused on women. So I've thought about some things, but I think that's still in the works where social media is a little bit easier to control.

LEE: That's a fair point. Knowing you, and knowing one of your strengths is really connecting with people through conversation. I would love to explore with you what that might look like in terms of kind of building your initial visibility, because again, that's really what we're talking about here is, how can we leverage your strengths so that you become more visible for your ideal client. I have to admit, when you started talking about a podcast or a YouTube channel, my brain kind of lit up, but where it went was not necessarily you starting your own yet. It may be something you want to start your own at some point in the future, but there are so many existing podcasts out there for exactly the woman you want to serve. And I'm curious what it would look like if we talked about, how can you use those existing streams of traffic to build your own visibility? What would it look like if you were guesting on podcasts that really spoke to your person or if you were writing guest blogs or something like that, so instead of starting something new and trying to bring traffic over, let's go where they already are, and bring their attention to you there? Does that make sense? 

LISA: It does, it feels slightly intimidating. Just in the sense of like, finding those avenues and connecting with those avenues, because, in some ways, it still feels a little bit like social media to me like having to find those people and connect with them.

LEE: How do you most like to connect with people?

LISA: One on one, I'm more like, let's really get into it and feel connected with each other. So I think that's kind of where I do that through, you know, digital stuff.

LEE: So you really are a one on one, like, let's get into it, let's get deep kind of person, which resonates with me. And I will say just from personal experience hosting my own podcast and doing interviews on other people's podcasts, that medium lends itself beautifully to those kinds of deeper one on one engagements because yes, the podcast is being released so that hundreds, thousands, of people can hear it. But for the most part, when you are actually conducting the interview, it's one to one, or you know, sometimes there's two hosts, but it is that kind of intimate engagement, and I can see how it could really play to your strengths where if you are engaging, not even worrying about the audience, but just with the podcast host, and engaging in that deeper conversation, it's going to be an opportunity for you to really shine in a way that feels comfortable to you.

LISA: Yeah, I completely agree with you is the step of getting connected with the podcasters, and that's the part that I have the difficulty with – the networking piece.

LEE: So let me ask you, if you were a podcast host, if you had a really successful thriving podcast that was designed especially for your ideal client, and someone was pitching you to come on your show, what would you want to see from them? How would you want that process to unfold?

LISA: I think I want to see that they've researched my show. They know what it's about. They know who my target audience is, and they can speak to why their topic relates to my target audience. I think that would be the most powerful for me.

LEE: 100% and again, as someone who has hosted podcasts, let me tell you, there's nothing more frustrating than getting a pitch that is clearly cut and paste, and has zero to do with my show or my audience, versus someone who clearly has taken the time to listen, who has referenced past episodes or past guests, who talks about my audience, and how they can bring value to my audience versus let's make it about me. I think your instincts here are spot on Lisa and even if it's just an initial query email or pitch, again, coming from that core place of service and putting the audience first is such a great way to establish that initial connection. So your instincts are on here. I think you already know deep down kind of how to approach this. Which suggests it's not a, “How do I do this?”, as much as it is, “Do I have what it takes to do this?”

LISA: Sure. I mean, I feel like I do. I think it's just the social component. The piece of this, like well, maybe I won't be quippy enough, or maybe I don't have this part enough so they won't feel connected with me.


LEE: Okay, now we're getting kind of into the deeper internal messaging, right, which is, am I good enough? Are they gonna like me? Do I have what it takes to do this, which I think many of us can really identify with? The fact of the matter is, you do bring something unique and important. Your message matters. And there are women out there who need to hear from you because no one has ever been able to put into words what they're experiencing the way you can. So when it comes down to this idea of intentionality, I mean, that's your thing! But it's this idea of, “Okay, am I willing to make space for this discomfort, maybe even the fear, of being rejected, or being thought less of, if it gets me closer to my goal of connecting with the women I most want to serve, and the people who most need to hear my message.”

LISA: The answer's yes, like, I don't have an issue with someone telling me “No”. It's just more so the fear of the unknown, you know?

LEE: Yeah, and let's be honest, rejection does not feel good, that rejection hurts. And when you put yourself out there, you are taking a risk, you are making yourself vulnerable, and it is entirely possible that someone could say, “No, thank you”. It's entirely possible someone could say, “Hell no, who do you think you are?” I mean, there's a whole wide range, or it's possible people just don't reply. It's like the silent “No”. Which in many ways is worse, because you just don't know where you stand. So yeah, those are definitely possible outcomes, and they are all outcomes I personally have experienced too. So I speak from experience here, and yet every no has gotten me closer to “Yes”, and every “No” has also made sure that I become even more focused and targeted on who I want to serve. Because if I'm getting a “No” then for whatever reason, that was not the avenue for me, at least not then. Not at that time. So I want to kind of normalize the fear behind it because it's legitimate, and it's understandable that putting yourself out there, knowing that the answer could be “No”, that feels scary. At the end of the day, you get to choose and maybe today you choose, so I'm not going to do it today. I'm not gonna put myself out there today, the risk feels too great. What needs to happen for it to be a day where you feel like no, I'm gonna do it anyway?

LISA: I think you know me by now, Lee, every day I do it anyway. I mean, the biggest step now is like the “how to’s” of it. You know how to find those podcasts, but yeah, every day is the day of like, let's do it anyway…and then you'll cry about it later. If need be.

LEE: If need be, or you'll celebrate later, which is actually much more likely.

LISA: Yeah, a little less often, but hopefully, yes.

LEE: Lisa, are there podcasts that you enjoy listening to?

LISA: Well see, that's the thing, I'm not really like a podcast person. I'm a YouTube person. So I mainly look at things on YouTube. I know when yours was on your website, I would go to that. But now it's on your website, I think anymore.  

LEE: The podcast? Yeah, it's there.

LISA: Okay. I think a lot of stuff has integrated or went into apps, and so I'm less prone to go that direction now. Whereas when it's available to me on YouTube or on the internet, it's just easy to access. So that's why it's harder for me to speak to that.

LEE: Okay, I would be really curious. I think there's two avenues we could go here. First, if YouTube is more comfortable for you, and if YouTube is where your ideal client is, that's really the important piece, then maybe rather than podcasting, we explore YouTube channels, especially if there are YouTube programs that bring guests on, or are more of an interview format. That might be something to consider. If not, if we want to explore this podcast route, then I think you're exactly right when you said earlier, the first part of a good podcast pitch is researching the show and making sure it's a good fit. What I might suggest for you then, Lisa, is to open up whatever podcast platform app you use, whether it's Apple Podcast, or Stitcher, Spotify, whatever, and start searching keywords, whether it's “working mom” or “doctorate level women” or whatever keywords you want to use, set a timer, but allow yourself to go down the rabbit hole and just see what podcasts are out there, then maybe just pick two or three and maybe listen to a couple episodes and see how they resonate with you. I would also, as you're doing that look for the number of reviews and the number of episodes, because that'll give you an idea of how the material is landing with the audience, and it'll also give you an idea about where to start. For example, I personally probably would not start with a podcast that had thousands and thousands of reviews, because that suggests it's probably a larger podcast, they're getting pitched a lot, and for my comfort zone, I would want to go more niched, more targeted, I might choose a podcast that has closer to 10, 15, 20, 30 reviews, because that suggests that there's an audience that's following them, but that it's smaller, it's more niche, which means they're really listening. And it probably means that the podcast host is going to be more open to a really thoughtful well crafted pitch. Likewise, look at the number of episodes, I would want to see probably at least 8 to 10 episodes, 8 to 10 recent episodes, to make sure they're still around and moving forward, and then check out their website, make sure that their values are aligned with yours. We're doing just a little kind of background research, but we can treat the podcast platforms like search engines, so just figure out the keywords that are really going to help you narrow in on your audience and search those keywords in Apple Podcasts or Stitcher and see what comes up. How does that sound?

LISA: Yeah, sounds good. I did research at one point, but it was very short lived like, I started doing a little research. Somehow I got sidetracked on something else, and then it kind of fell by the wayside, but that was pre-COVID too, so I had less time.


LEE: Let me ask you, then, what would your next steps look like? We were going to kind of take everything we talked about today and drill it down into an action plan. What would that look like?

LISA: I think searching some podcasts that my population may be looking at, and kind of going down that path, the episodes and everything, and trying to get a good picture on who will pitch and maybe think about five or so to pitch to and see how that plays.

LEE: I love that idea. I think that's really wise, and keeping in mind too, that we opened with you talking about your social media presence. I don't want to suggest you should stop doing social media. In fact, I follow you on all of your accounts. So I see what you're doing and you're doing really good work. Keep doing what you're doing, because when you start building more of that audience, by leveraging other audiences by going to other podcasts and so forth, you'll want a place to direct them back to and so at the end of the interview when someone says, “Lisa, where can people find you?”. You can tell them, follow me on Instagram, come in my Facebook group. So we do want to keep nurturing those and I think there's some benefit to acting as if, acting as an if, we already have all of those people there, it's going to give them a really soft place to land when they find you, but let's do that in tandem with finding opportunities to build your visibility. Whether it's podcast interviews, whether it's YouTube interviews, that sort of thing, and then you're going to build some momentum. And before you know it, one interview is going to lead to another, it's going to lead to another, it's going to lead to you starting your own podcast, which I would listen to that podcast for what it's worth. So let me check in with you. How are you feeling about our call today?

LISA: I'm feeling good. I think that's probably the piece I was feeling like the funnel piece was the piece that was missing but I think even before that is the visibility piece that I wasn't spending as much attention to, I think a piece of it because I didn't necessarily want to be visible. Even though I didn't want to admit it to myself, because it's kind of easier to do the things you can control, then the things that you have to be like, “Oh, I'm going to trust the universe to take care of it.”.

LEE: Yeah, whereas it's really a little bit of both, right? We do our part, we show up and do the work, and we trust that the universe is gonna see that and say, “Oh, that's what you want here. Let me give you some more then.”. Lisa, thank you for sitting on the hot seat today. I'm really grateful. 

LISA: Thank you.

* * * * * * * 

Many many thanks to Lisa for hopping on the hot seat and allowing me to share her coaching session with all of you. I'm really grateful, Lisa, and I know I took a lot from your session and I suspect those of you who are listening did as well. 

If you'd like to learn more about Lisa, again, check out the show notes. And if you'd like to have an opportunity to receive some hot seat coaching from me, then I would encourage you to check out the Coach with Clarity membership. We have monthly Hot Seat Coaching calls, we have monthly Q&A calls, guest expert trainings, co-working sessions, and quite honestly one of the most supportive and innovative community of coaches out there. I would love for you to become a Coach with Clarity member. So if you'd like to check it out, head over to CoachwithClarity,.com/membership to learn more. I hope you will join me here again next week for another episode of the Coach with Clarity podcast. 

I want to give you a little sneak preview because next week's episode is going to be a really personal one, and I think a timely one as well. We just wrapped up the Getting Started Series and we focused several weeks on the steps you need to take to build your coaching business. If you've been following those Clarity in Action moments, then you're probably starting to gain some traction, and people are probably starting to express interest in your coaching services. Well, if you're like most coaches that is both a very exciting time and a bit of a paralyzing time as well, and it's not uncommon for some self-doubt or uncertainty to creep in. And we start to wonder, “Oh my gosh, do I really have what it takes to be a coach?”. Well, next week we are going to dive into that even further. We're going to explore the mindset issues that come up for coaches, and I will offer you some tips and strategies to help you work through that yourself. So definitely join me back here on the Coach with Clarity podcast next week for what will be a really powerful episode. Again, I want to thank you for joining me today. My name is Lee Chaix McDonough, and I'm reminding you to get out there and show the world what it means to be a Coach with Clarity. 

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