Episode 40: [Coaching Call] Leveraging Your Strengths with a Group Program with Liz Gray

On this coaching call, Liz Gray and I discuss how to leverage your strengths, experience and gifts and create the right container that fits your ideal client relationship and facilitates transformation.

40: [Coaching Call] Leveraging Your Strengths with a Group Program with Liz Gray

By now you know that coaching calls are some of my favorite episodes to do on the podcast because it gives me the opportunity to connect one-on-one with another coach and support them in building and growing their coaching business.   Today, I'm thrilled to introduce you to Liz Gray.

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Show Notes

By now you know that coaching calls are some of my favorite episodes to do on the podcast because it gives me the opportunity to connect one-on-one with another coach and support them in building and growing their coaching business.

Today, I'm thrilled to introduce you to Liz Gray. Liz is a therapist and she started Organize and Thrive as her way of sharing her strengths of creativity and organization with others.

At the start of today's episode, it may not be totally clear why I'm including this in our series on group coaching but by the end, it'll be pretty obvious. This coaching call is so powerful and the transformation that Liz experiences during our call is so inspiring.

Let's get right to it!

Topics covered

  • What Liz does in her work with people in helping professions
  • Why it's important for Liz to figure out the next steps for growing her practice
  • How imposter syndrome is coming up for Liz
  • The types of clients Liz feels most drawn towards
  • Figuring out the right container for your ideal client relationship
  • Getting in tune with your strengths and personality
  • The energetic toll of major life transitions
  • Following the energy and the joy
  • Differentiating between your ideal 1-on-1 client and your ideal group program client
  • Liz's key takeaways and action plan for developing a group coaching program

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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Discover your Coaching Superpower! Go to https://coachingquiz.com to learn more about your strengths – and what to look out for – as a coach.

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

Want to work together? Become a Coach with Clarity Member today!

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TRANSCRIPT

Well, hi there, my friend. Welcome back to another episode of the Coach with Clarity podcast. My name is Lee Chaix McDonough and we are getting ready to wrap up our series on group coaching. And I am so excited to do so by sharing another coaching call with you. You all know by now coaching calls are some of my very favorite episodes to do, because it gives me the opportunity to connect one on one with another coach and support them in building and growing their coaching business. And today, I am thrilled to introduce you to Liz Gray of Organize and Thrive, and I'll be honest, at the start of today's episode, it may not be 100% clear why I'm including this in our series on group coaching. But by the end, I think it'll be pretty obvious, and if this series on group coaching has inspired you to start your first or your next group coaching program, then I have some great news for you.

Next month, I am hosting a one day virtual retreat, all about helping you design and take action on your group program. That's right, it's a one day virtual event, I'm limiting it to 20 people, and by the end of that retreat, you will walk away with your concept and a solid plan to get your first or your next group coaching program off the ground. So if you'd like to learn more, head to CoachwithClarity.com/growwithgroups, you will get all of the information you need about the retreat there and you'll be able to sign up.

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Now a quick note about today's episode, you may find there are a few moments where the audio quality gets a little compromised, courtesy of Zoom, and well basically, 2020. But stick with it. This coaching call is so powerful. And the transformation that Liz experiences during our call is so inspiring. I don't want you to miss it. So apologies in advance for any Zoom hiccups but don't let that detract from the content. Because I got to tell you, this is a great coaching call. So let's get right to it.
Lee: Well, hey there, Liz, thank you so much for coming on the Coach with Clarity podcast today.
Liz Gray: Thank you so much for having me. I'm very excited.
Lee: Likewise, I am too. Before we get started, I would love to learn more about you and the work that you do in the world.
Liz Gray: Absolutely. So I live in the Chicago area, and I am a licensed clinical social worker, and also a registered play therapist. But the business that I have is called Organize and Thrive and I help therapists get organized in their practices and their lives. And so I kind of have been able to take my therapy background and knowledge and experience and translate that into helping other therapists and helpers.
Lee: That sounds fantastic, and I am sure we're going to talk much more about that during our call today. So I'm interested to know what you would like to talk about on our call.
Liz Gray: Yes. So I would say that there's two big things I would love to at least explore a little bit, even if we don't get the resolve both of them fully. One is I have been hiding behind the word consultant in my business, and I've realized that recently. I think I've been scared to use the word coach, and so I would love to maybe talk about what it would be like to move toward coaching, and anything that I should look out for to make sure that it's not going toward therapy. So that's kind of one piece of it. And then also, I guess this is related, but I find that the work I've been doing with my consulting clients is much more short term, and I would love to be able to translate that into a longer term really deep meaningful work with them. So I think it's really just figuring out where I fit in this coaching world and how to make that work for me and for my clients.
Lee: Excellent, and I can see how those two would be related. Once we resolve one. It may influence how we go about addressing the other, so I think that's fantastic. And I'm curious, let's say 30 minutes from now, what would the ideal outcome be from our time together today?
Liz Gray: Whoo, I love that question. I think, for me to feel like I have a plan, and maybe a couple of next steps for what to do to really know how I can take my business, and use my strengths and what I already have. And know kind of, “Okay, this is what I'm maybe going to do this week or this month”. And just to have a couple ideas, I think.
Lee: Terrific. So we're really looking at maybe a growth plan then for your business, and the next steps that you could take in order to start bringing some of this to life then.
Liz Gray: Exactly.
Lee: Excellent. All right. I'm curious, Liz, why is this outcome important to you?
Liz Gray: So I relate to my clients a lot. I know that usually, at least in the therapy world, although I think it's true in the coaching world as well, that our ideal clients are usually related to us. And it's funny the work that I've done in therapy and in their kind of coaching consulting world, as I've realized that a lot of the clients that I love to work with do have a lot of similarities to me. So that's what this is about me. But I think that that's pretty common.
Lee: Yes, I would say it is.
Liz Gray: So, I so feel for my fellow therapists and helpers, and healers, especially with the times that we're in now, that is really hard. And I think that there's so much shame that people have. And what I've seen is that there is an amazing amount of knowledge and experience that helpers have, yet that can be so held back and bogged down by all the details, all of the business stuff, all of the keeping track of finances, and their emails, and bits of documents, and notes, paperwork, and all of that, that it takes away from their ability to be an amazing clinician. And I've been there, I understand what it's like to feel completely overwhelmed by other things in your life and not be able to devote and commit the amount of time wanted and needed to your business. I understand imposter syndrome, I understand being so overwhelmed that you completely shut down. And so I think there's this like empathy piece that I've realized over the years, that my skills, and I think strength of being creative, organized, and compassionate, really kind of fit into this Organize and Thrive helping people literally organize their physical space, and I think their mental and emotional space, so they'd be able to thrive in a personal and professional life.
Lee: I love that this is so clearly so personal to you, and that you feel very connected with your ideal client, because in some ways, they represent a part of you as well. And so the fact that your reasons for doing this are so deeply connected to your values. You know, I heard a lot about service in there and integrity. I think that's such a powerful motivator for moving forward in your business.
Liz Gray: Yes, I agree.
Lee: Excellent. So, end of session today, ideally, we've got kind of the beginnings of a plan to help you take the next steps in your business, you'll know what you'll be doing next. I'm curious where you think we should begin.
Liz Gray: I wonder if maybe we can focus a little bit on my ideal client, and then maybe start to craft what she or he would need.
Lee: Okay, so we're really looking at the “who”, so who you want to serve, and then the “what”, like what the long term result would be, what they would gain from working with you – we can absolutely do that. I want to connect that back to the two topics you mentioned at the top, first hiding behind the word consultant versus taking on the mantle of coach and then also wanting to move into longer term work. And I can see the niche piece really connecting with the long term work component. I'm curious, should we kind of press pause on the consultant versus coach piece and see if that comes up or head straight into it? What would feel more comfortable for you?
Liz Gray: Oh, I'm fine to press pause on that. I think if we have the momentum, let's go forward.
Lee: Awesome. Okay. So let's talk about the “who” and the “what” then. Tell me more about, kind of, what's coming up for you when you think about the person you most want to serve and how you want to serve them.
Liz Gray: Sure, so maybe it would be helpful to give a little background about my business and the people who are in my community already.
Lee: Excellent.
Liz Gray: So I have a Facebook group called Organize and Thrive, and it was originally called Organize Your Private Practice, and about a year and a half ago, I changed the name, maybe it's two years ago, to Organize and Thrive so that I could reach a wider audience. Not necessarily just people who are in private practice, because a couple of years ago, I made a shift in my own life where I went from having a private practice to deciding to close that practice and work for someone else in the therapy world, but continue to have Organize and Thrive. And so that's a piece that I have dealt with maybe feelings of being an imposter or a fraud a little bit that I no longer have my private practice. So I think that's the piece that kind of flows into all of this, but I still do really like working with therapists who have their own private practice, because I did for a little under three years.
Lee: Right. So you still got the street cred. I mean, you've done that work before. But the imposter syndrome is coming up, because it's like, “Yeah, but you don't have it now, so who are you to do this then?”
Liz Gray: Exactly. So I think there's a piece of me that is maybe a little fearful to say, “I am a coach, and I work exclusively with therapists in private practice”. So I wonder if there's a part of me that says, “I like to work with therapists or helpers, or healers”, but to be honest, now that I'm kind of talking through and saying it out loud, I do really enjoy working with therapists who are in private practice.
Lee: Yeah, that was gonna be my question, which is, where on an energetic level do you feel most drawn? When you think about who you want to work with, what's drawing you almost like a magnet?
Liz Gray: I think it's people who have their own private practice, and who are what I would call a “System Sam”. So I have this little quiz that people can take, and you either end up being a “Clutter Chris”, which as you can imagine, is someone who has a difficult time organizing and staying on top of things. You are a “Perfectionist Pat”, which is very similar to me, who likes to have their stuff together and a little perfectionistic. And then there's a “System Sam”, who is kind of in the middle where they have the skills and tools and know how to be organized. But because of their current work situation, or whatever they're going through in their life, they don't have the ability right now to be on top of their game. And so I found that I really, really enjoyed working with the “System Sams” long term. I think those are the people who it's like it's deep down underneath, they have it, they know what to do but they just need some hand holding to be honest. And they need someone to help with the practical organization of, “Okay, let's literally walk together and clear your desktop”, whether it's a physical desk or on their computer, let's go through your emails, let's come up with a system for tracking your money or anything else in your business. But what I'm starting to realize is that's really grazing the surface, there's so much more underneath it. And I want to help them really get to, what are the barriers? What are the triggers? What are the things that are really, really holding you back from moving forward?
Lee: Yes, it sounds like mindset work would be a lovely pairing with the actual rubber meets road, let's get your desk organized kind of service that you can also offer.
Liz Gray: Exactly.
Lee: And I'm curious, does your ideal client realize that they have mindset issues or limiting beliefs, or other kind of mental junk that is getting in their way? Like how aware are they that that's even part of the issue?
Liz Gray: I think they're aware, but I think there's a lot of shame and embarrassment that comes with it because I've met with many people through my work with Organize and Thrive. And when I offer them a safe space for them to be able to say, “I'm really behind on my notes, or I'm just feeling so overwhelmed in my business, I don't know if I can keep this up”. Or to work with a group of people, it was the coolest moment when I offered, it was a two hour session and it was free, and people could just come and basically get their notes done, just a community accountability, Zoom call. And someone had mentioned feeling so overwhelmed and their notes were so behind and I asked if I could pause for a second, and I said, “For everyone else, can you raise your hand if you feel similarly, like if you feel embarrassed, if you feel behind?” and every single person in that group raised their hand, and just to see like, everyone shoulders relax and the energy in the room shift..it was, “Oh my gosh, it's not to me. I'm not alone. It doesn't mean there's something wrong with me. Actually, there are a lot of outside factors that make this job really, really hard.”
Lee: Yes, and I think that's such an extraordinary example, and I'm thinking about Brene Brown, who talks about like, you can't have shame when you also have compassion. And so to kind of open up that space for people to be vulnerable and say, “Oh, no, me too, you're not alone in this”, that level of connection can be such an important part of banishing shame. And so I can see how the mindset component that you're bringing into the actual organizational work is so important, because it does tackle all of those uncomfortable, unwanted feelings that we don't want to have, and that we definitely don't want to talk about. But you're able to create that container where it is safe for them to talk about it.
Liz Gray: Oh, I love that. I guess they use container, usually in therapy. But I love how I could use this in the coaching world as well.
Lee: Absolutely, absolutely. In fact, part of what we do as coaches is create the structure, the boundaries, the container, if you will, for each individual session. So we're clear about what we're working towards and what we want to accomplish, but then we're also creating a much larger container that holds the coaching relationship, and the overarching goals that the client wishes to achieve and working with us. And so when we're thinking about helping you move away from short term consultant focused work into longer term coaching oriented work, I suspect that's going to be a big part of it for you is really defining what does that larger container look like, for a long term relationship? How do I want to build that? What is that journey going to look like with the client, and then we can just kind of pare it down into each individual session as well.
Liz Gray: Oh, I love it, and I'm such a visual person. And I'm just imagining this container that has different pieces where there's the container, yes, to hold the long term goals, but then the smaller container for each individual client and each individual session within that. So that is such a cool idea. And that is so helpful already.
Lee: Oh, I'm so glad to hear that. It's like we're creating our own Container Store, basically. But this time, it's for coaching.
Liz Gray: And I love The Container Store. So this is perfect.
Lee: I had a feeling you might, I don't know why. Just a guess.
Liz Gray: Yeah, you're right.
Lee: This really does work well with Organize and Thrive. And so it's very meta, actually, but you're really applying this same perspective, these same strategies to how you are developing your business and your offers and how you want to engage with your clients. So it just feels so in integrity, like this is who you are, this is how you operate. So why not bring this into your business as well?
Liz Gray: Exactly, and I think where I've been stuck at, it's been feeling choppy, like, okay, this is funny that I think I do have the skills and the tools, but I have not figured out how to integrate all of it yet.
Lee: Okay. Okay, so you feel really competent, then about the “what”, like, I can do this, I can do this, I can do this, but it feels a little disparate, the idea of how would I bring them all together? How would I find cohesion with all of this? That's where it feels a little uncertain?
Liz Gray: Yeah. So though hearing you say that, maybe I misspoke. I think I gave myself too much credit in that last statement. I think I have some of the skills and ability, but I really am looking for guidance. I love being in the student role, and that, to be honest, is a really big reason why private practice wasn't the right fit for me. Because first of all, it felt like a lot of anxiety and liability on me that I didn't have, I guess, a container to be able to hold all of that.
Lee: I had a question for you, and so you've mentioned that you are comfortable being in “student role”. Tell me more about what “student role” is, what that means, what it looks like.
Liz Gray: So growing up, I, I guess you could call me the teacher's pet. I really like to do well, to be held accountable, to be given a path. I mean, even the syllabus at the beginning of, from as long as I can remember, I mean probably back to junior high, but definitely high school, college, graduate school, where I would get excited to get the syllabus at the beginning of the semester and color code and go through and put everything into my calendar. There's something about it, but other people who kind of had the plans for me, and then I was able to execute it. And I don't know if I fully realized how much I relied on that, and actually how much that helps me, because there's a people pleaser part of me that really gets activated but I think actually in a positive way, when I have a teacher, a mentor, a person who's giving me tasks and deadlines and holding me accountable, it's a lot harder for me to hold myself accountable.
Lee: Okay, that's really helpful to know, and what I heard is that you are an extraordinary executor, basically, you know, how to execute on tasks. You have a plan, you're given a plan, you can get it done.
Liz Gray: Exactly. But when it's just me, that's where I get lost.
Lee: Okay. So that suggests to me, and I'm curious how this resonates with you, less of a “I don't know what I'm doing” issue and maybe more of a, “I do better with external accountability” issue. I don't know if it's a knowledge deficit as much as it is just knowing that external accountability is something that really helps you thrive and follow through on the actions you're taking. What are your thoughts?
Liz Gray: I agree, I would also add accountability and structure.
Lee: Okay. Yes, yeah. So you like having that external accountability and structure because that helps you execute, and that seems really consistent with your strengths and your personality? Liz Gray: Yeah, I definitely agree.
Lee: So let me reflect back then what if we said maybe it's not “student mode”. You know, maybe you are a lifelong learner, I mean, that's certainly possible. But it's really more, no, you are an expert, you know, how to execute on projects, you know, how to get stuff done. And you know that what's going to help you accomplish that are having those external boundaries in the form of structure and accountability to keep you on track?
Liz Gray: Yeah, I do like that. I think where I get stuck is, I guess, when I'm thinking about being a coach, there's something that I really, really want to be able to have a very structured program for my clients with flexibility in there, of course, but I think there's a disconnect. I'm not sure. First of all, is that what I need and or what my clients need? And also, is that just putting so much pressure on myself?
Lee: Hmm. Okay, those are two really good questions. Let's tackle question number one, which is, is that what my clients need? Is that what I need this idea of having really clear structure in a coaching program? And you know, Liz, really, there's only one way to figure that out, right. And that's to try it. And it might be interesting to approach work that you do, at least right now, at the beginning as like a beta test. It's an experiment, you have a hypothesis right now, this approach will work for this client, because I've seen it work for others, I've seen it work for myself. So let's test it, and no matter what happens, you're always going to get data as to whether or not this is the most effective approach to take with your clients, you're going to learn and they're going to learn pretty quickly, “Oh, this works up, this could be tweaked. That's not something that needs to be a part of the program”. So the more you do it, the more you're going to refine your process. Sometimes it's less about coming up with the structure and framework in advance and then applying it. And it's more about, I have this idea, I think it's going to work, let's test it out. Let's refine as we go and allow that experience then to inform the development of the framework. How does that sit with you?
Liz Gray: That's very true. And I guess, I think I have been doing that. So maybe not in the coaching sense yet, but in my business that I've had for a couple of years, I think I have been testing things out seeing what works and what doesn't like I am comfortable with that idea.
Lee: Excellent. I think we got to tackle this first question then about feeling like you're hiding behind the word consultant, because I'm sensing some energy here about, “I've done this before. It's just doing it in coaching that feels different”, and I'm just sensing that that's connected to this idea of, “I don't know what I need to do, or think, or feel, in order to call myself a coach”. Am I off base there? Or do you feel a connection there as well?
Liz Gray: Oh, I think you're onto something.
Lee: Okay. So can we explore that a little bit and see kind of what comes up?
Liz Gray: Yes, absolutely.
Lee: So I think actually, it was really insightful when you said I think I'm hiding behind the word consultant instead of moving forward with coaching and I'd love to know just a little bit more about what's coming up for you around that.
Liz Gray: Yeah, so I think when I first started Organize and Thrive, which again was Organize Your Private Practice, originally, I was not in a good place, I was living across the country, my husband and I just moved for his job, I was completely out of my element. And it was a very supportive group of people who actually, they had the idea that I take my strengths and skills of organization and create something. And so in some ways, it almost was having this business with what got me through that really, really difficult year. And I think that I maybe clung on to it a little bit too much, it kind of became a really big part of my identity, and it almost was like, you know, when you think about abundance versus scarcity mindset, it almost in a way felt like, “Yes, I'm really good at this stuff, but I'm doing it because I don't have any other skills, or I don't have any other strengths that I can share”.
Lee: Interesting. Okay. So yes, I can see how that abundance versus scarcity mindset piece would come up. And that there's some fear there, too. Like, this is the only thing I'm good at, therefore, I better lean into this hard.
Liz Gray: Yes, and so I think maybe that was probably confusing for me, because I got such a high from doing it. And I mean, I was so invested in this, what started out as a Facebook group, I don't even know if I had the intention of growing it into a big business, but just a way to connect with people. And I was so influenced and just so energized, and then what happened is, there was that for a while, and then when we moved back to the Chicago area, which is where we're from, and everything in my life changed and suddenly got calm, or was in process of getting calm again, and I was getting grounded and settled. I basically had no energy for my business for probably about a year, it was like pulling teeth. I was basically invisible and very quiet in my group, and I just, I was stuck. I was struggling, I didn't know exactly – what's interesting, in my personal life, I was doing better, but in the business, Organize and Thrive, I didn't know what to do. So I feel like it hasn't necessarily fully matched up with where I am. And now I'm at this place where I'm like, everything is starting to come together. And so what do I do with that? That’s where I’m at.
Lee: Yeah. And, you know, I just want to notice, too, that like, you went through some pretty significant life transitions. And anytime we go through a major change like that, it takes a toll on us energetically, and it's not surprising, and in fact, I would say it's probably normal, that your response then was to feel kind of just stuck and not really energetically connected to your business for a while. I suspect, you know, your psyche was healing, you were rebuilding your energy stores. And so I just want to reflect back that I think that experience is one that's pretty common that a lot of small business owners and entrepreneurs go through, especially when they're facing huge transitions in their lives. I say that too, because many of us right now are going through huge transitions because of a global pandemic. And so if we're noticing fluctuations in our desire or motivation or energy, that's totally understandable. But what I'm hearing from you now is it's like, “Okay, I'm kind of back, I'm ready to go, things are starting to gel, what do I do with this?”. That's kind of the next question. Like, if we were to create the ultimate ideal vision of your business of Organize and Thrive, what would that look like?
Liz Gray: Well, first of all, I just want to go back and thank you for validating that.
Lee: You’re welcome.
Liz Gray: It’s really nice to hear that. My vision, and I would love a community of people, kind of, the “System Sam's” that I was talking about, who are sensitive and really stuck, kind of, the way that I am, or have been and just need some accountability and support. And so I think a hybrid of individual support, of group support, of trainings. Yeah, as I'm talking through this, I mean, I really see this being kind of holistic, rather than like, I I mentioned the word choppy earlier, like, you know, I would much rather develop strong relationships with a few, like a small group of people and have it be long term, than have a ton of people just come and meet with me one time.
Lee: Yeah. Yeah, Liz, it sounds to me like you are describing the genesis of a group program, a small intensive, longer term, and we can talk about what long term means to you, but I can see it being this really powerful group program where, yes, there are opportunities for each person to get some individual one on one work with you. And there's ways to pull that into a group program. But then you also have this group forum in which you can combine training with support with accountability. How does that sit with you, as you hear me reflect that back?
Liz Gray: Yes, I'm writing this down, because it's so good. I actually did an eight week course, for therapists in private practice, this was last year, two years ago. And it was very focused on the nuts and bolts, the detail oriented stuff, it really wasn't mindset focused at all. And so this actually feels like it could fit where I could take what I've created already, and have that maybe as an adjunct, but that would not be the main purpose of this program.
Lee: I'm so glad you said that because I think a common mistake that I see a lot of coaches make, and I'll be honest with you, I made this mistake, too, when I was starting my group program is that we make our group programs really curriculum based. And that's what a course is, and so there is room for that, and there's nothing wrong with courses and sometimes we do need a lot of kind of structured, “how to” content. But what I'm hearing you describe is that the content, the “how to” would support the community, and the synthesis, the synergy that happens when people come together to support each other. So the emphasis really would be on the experience, and the content would be secondary to support that.
Liz Gray: Yes, I love that.
Lee: Excellent. Oh, my gosh, Liz, I think you're starting a group program.
Liz Gray: Maybe we'll have to see, but I love it.
Lee: Excellent. Excellent. Okay, so let me kind of circle back to the original topics and outcome for today and see what we need to do to kind of solidify this, because we talked a little bit about consultant versus coach, and we talked about moving into longer term work. And the goal was to kind of have the beginnings of a plan and maybe some next steps that you would want to take in support of your business. So where are we on that? What do we need to do to kind of fine tune that result for you?
Liz Gray: I just got like the head buzzing feeling, you know, when you kind of get a head rush, but like, in a good way.
Lee: Okay, good. That’s a relief.
Liz Gray: In a really good way. I think I just, I'm feeling really excited and energized, and I think I lost a little focus just now when you were talking because I'm kind of thinking a couple steps ahead. So I want to be aware of that and kind of bring myself back to the present, and what you asked me.
Lee: I appreciate that, but I am also one to follow the energy. So if you are feeling excited and motivated, and to the point where like, you're getting that head rush feeling. I also want to say like, Alright, this is a signal that we are on the right track here. Like when we follow the energy, when we follow the joy, then I think we're really setting ourselves up for success. So yes, let's be aware of that coming up in the moment right now. And we can even connect with that sense of energy and ask it, what do you want me to do? What's my next step? And when we do that, what comes up for you?
Liz Gray: There's excitement, but there's also, and this is where my mind goes is all of the kind of “what ifs” or “What do I do?” or “Is this gonna work? Am I going to fail again?”. I mean, I know what the negatives that are just kind of creeping up into my brain. And so I'm wondering, I mean, having you on the call right now, I think this could be a perfect opportunity just for me to learn more about how you would possibly be able to help me with creating this type of community and program.
Lee: Yes, well, first things first, the good news is you have experience creating community. I mean, you have a free Facebook group, Organize and Thrive, and so some of what you've already learned from doing that will be applicable and creating a group coaching program. So you're not operating from like, square one here. I want to reflect that back. And actually, the timing on this is perfect. So we are recording this right now, end of October, and starting November 9th on the podcast, I'm actually kicking off an entire series on group programs. So this really could not be better timed, and we're going to be talking about what you need to think about when you're creating a group program, I'm bringing on my guest expert, Emily Walker, who is all about learning experiences, and what that looks like within a group program, I'm going to share some of my own lessons with a group program. And actually, that's all going to lead up to a day long retreat that I'm holding all about creating your first or your next group program. So the good news for you is like this timing here, I don't think could be more perfect. We are just about to launch into group stuff in November. So I think between the free content on the podcast, and maybe some other offers within Coach with Clarity that could really support you right now. I think your first step is to get really clear on not just the individual client you want to serve, and so the “System Sam”, I feel like you have that client identity nailed down really strongly. I'm curious to know what else “System Sam” needs to have or hold in order to be a good fit for a group program. Not every ideal one on one client is necessarily an ideal client for a group program. So I think that would be where I would encourage you to start is, what else needs to be present for them to be an ideal group client for me? What are your thoughts about that?
Liz Gray: Whoo, I love that. Yes and I agree, I think I do have a pretty good idea of who I enjoy working with individually. But yes, not everyone is appropriate for group.
Lee: Yes. So I think step one would probably be to really get even more clear on your ideal group client. And then number two, is to think about that person's ideal end result? What will they be able to think, feel, or do differently as a result of having participated in your group program? And how will that help them achieve what it is they really want? So when we start with the end in mind, then we can kind of reverse engineer the program so that you're structuring it in a way and you're including information in a way that supports that desired end result.
Liz Gray: Yes, it reminds me of when I briefly did the teacher thing, which was not for me, clearly based on our conversation. And thinking back to when I was a teacher briefly. And that when we were structuring a unit, we would start by creating the test and what we wanted the students to learn and then go back and make sure that was all covered in the unit. So…
Lee: Liz, this is perfect. I mean, you have all of this experience kind of doing this work in different professions or different areas, but it's highly relevant here. So again, I think you're bringing a lot into this, that's going to serve you really powerfully. And now it's a matter of looking at it through a coaching lens, developing that perspective, and then trying it out and listening to your ideal clients so that you know what it is they want, you know what it is they need, you can start to shape a program to address that. And then we see how it goes.
Liz Gray: Cool. Sounds really great. I'm very excited. Awesome.
Lee: So let me ask you, what are your key takeaways from our conversation today?
Liz Gray: Oh, my gosh. I mean, first of all, I guess I've been thinking about that. I've been through a lot of really tough stuff and a lot of transitions and how that's affected me. But I hadn't really thought about how my positive experiences and all the different, I guess you can say, jobs, or even professions that I've been in, are actually helping me now. Again, I think it's the abundance versus scarcity mindset that the positive like picking the positives that I have, rather than just thinking of the negatives.
Lee: Yes, and how that can really counteract that imposter syndrome voice that comes up that says, “Who are you to do this?” Well, who are you not to? Look at all of this experience you bring and all of the skills and knowledge, you have such a unique perspective on this topic, because you come from this particular background or you've had this particular experience, and so that really counteracts that message of doubt and of trying to keep you small.
Liz Gray: Absolutely. I think the other big thing too, is this idea of a group which is just based on I just started a group actually in the therapy world for highly sensitive people, and so that's something I've had dreamed about for a long time and it's finally happening and so it's really cool to see like this parallel process happening with Organize and Thrive. That maybe this is something that not only would really meet the needs of a lot of people, I think and help them, but I think it's exactly where I'm meant to be right now.
Lee: I love when everything just kind of comes together. Isn't it extraordinary to how this was not something either one of us necessarily saw as a possible outcome from this session. And yet, here we are and your action plan is now much more around what this group program might look like, which is pretty exciting.
Liz Gray: It's so cool. I mean, I'm just, I'm smiling. I know you can't see me right now, but I'm smiling. And I feel it's like, you know, when you feel like you start, almost like wanna cry. But again, it's a positive thing. It's just like the tears of joy and overwhelm. And just, it's feeling really, like this is, this feels right!
Lee: Oh, Liz, that just makes my day. I'm just sitting over here. absolutely delighted. And I'm so glad that we have this experience together today.
Liz Gray: Me too, thank you so much.
Lee: You're so welcome. Before we wrap up, I would love to hear how people can learn more about the work you do, about Organize and Thrive, and maybe even be a part of this forthcoming group program that you're creating.
Liz Gray: Oh, yeah, I hadn't even thought about that. So my website is Organize-and-Thrive.com and there actually are hyphens in between each word. So it's Organize-and-Thrive.com, and then I also do have a Facebook group, it is for therapists only, but you can be either pre-licensed or licensed, and you just can type in Organize and Thrive in Facebook, and find me there.
Lee: Excellent. All right, we will make sure that we have links to all of that in the show notes. And Liz, I just want to say thank you again for coming on the show.
Liz Gray: Thank you so much. I'm very excited that we got to meet.
Lee: Me too.
I am so excited by how excited Liz is to get her group coaching program up and running, I think she has something really special to share with therapists who are looking to not only get their businesses and their lives organized, but really dive into the mindset issues behind it, and I think a group coaching program is going to be such a powerful way for her to serve her clients. So Liz, thank you again for coming on the show and sharing your experience with us.
And remember, if you are thinking about running your first or next group coaching program in 2021, then you don't want to miss my Grow with Groups Virtual Retreat that is coming on Saturday, December 12. So we will be spending all day helping you get your concept nailed down, getting your plan solidified, so that you'll know exactly what you need to do to get your group up and running. And something I didn't mention at the top is that there are some special bonuses I'm including to help you succeed not just in launching your group but also in filling it. So I will be sharing my marketing matrix bonus masterclass with you which will give you a template on how to create a marketing plan that feels good and that aligns with your strengths and your priorities. And it can absolutely be used in general for your coaching practice or specifically for say a group program you happen to be launching. There's other bonuses too so be sure to head to CoachwithClarity.com/growwithgroups to learn more and to register for the Virtual Retreat. I can't wait to see you there. All right, my friends. That's it for me today but never fear I will be back in your podcast feed next week with a brand new episode of the show. So until then, my name is Lee Chaix McDonough encouraging you to get out there and show the world what it means to be a Coach with Clarity.

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