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Ep 043: Sales Self-Sabotage: Why It Happens And How To Heal It (So You Can Finally Scale Your Income + Impact)

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Sales is the lifeblood of your business. Without sales, you don’t have a business. Period.

Sales is also the lifeblood of your purpose. If you can’t get clients to work with you, you can’t make a difference in their lives and do the work you’re meant to do.

So, why do so many women self-sabotage sales? I work with so many women who don’t want to sell – they just want to coach, write, create websites… whatever their calling is.

I get it, I was one of them. I remember telling my coach in one of our sessions: “Flo, I don’t want to sell. I just want to coach. I wish I had the money to hire a sales team, so they could get clients for me.” Do you ever wish the same? 

On the surface, it sounds like a very reasonable wish. Aren’t we told you need to only do the things in your zone of genius? Sales is rarely in your zone of genius, so it makes sense to outsource it.

In reality, everything is sales. Whether you want a client to hire you, an influencer to be on your podcast, or your BFF to see a movie with you, you must sell that person on your vision and why they should say yes to you.

Yet, most of us prefer to give up our dreams and sabotage our goals than sell. Isn’t that crazy?

What You Think Sales Is

A lot of us think of sales as convincing people to give you money they don’t have or buy something they don’t need. It feels pushy, sleazy, and manipulative.

And why would you not have this view? We’ve all experienced:

  • Random sales people stopping you in the middle of the street on the way to see a friend to sell you something you couldn’t care less about.
  • An internet marketer scaring you into buying an expensive course to get more clients/find love/lose weight, only to realise said course is crap.
  • A sales assistant trying to push you to buy that killer pair of heels that’d go so well with that red skirt and pink blouse when all you wanted was the pink blouse – and now she won’t leave you alone.

In these disempowering situations, it feels like sales is something that’s been done to you – and you don’t want to do the same thing to someone else.

But just because a few bad apples abuse sales, it doesn’t mean selling itself is bad. 

What Sales Really Is

Sales is an expression of belief.

Sales is you talking about something you believe in. Like that amazing movie you want all your friends to see. Or that holiday you want to book with your partner. Or your new online course that’ll change the lives of many people.

When you truly believe in what you’re selling and you know it’s going to improve people’s lives, you don’t feel like a pushy salesman. You feel like you’re helping someone – because you are. If you know that your product or service can help someone, why wouldn’t you share it with the people who need it?

I’ll go as far as to say that not sharing your products and services with the people who need them is selfish. You can solve their problem, so don’t leave them in pain.

Why You Self-Sabotage Sales

I know you have a big heart and want to help people. So why is it hard for you to sell (i.e. tell the people who need what you have to offer how you can help them)? Here are the most common reasons I hear over and over again:

  • I don’t want to be pushy
  • I don’t want to make people uncomfortable
  • I don’t want to put pressure on anyone to buy
  • I don’t want to be mean
  • I don’t want people to hate me and shut down the phone on me

What do you notice about these statements? They’re all about YOU.

This isn’t about the other person at all or what’s good for them. If they get on a call with you or show interest in your work, it’s because they know you can help them – they NEED you to help them!

This is about YOU being scared of:

  • Rejection
  • Failure
  • Criticism
  • Judgment
  • Not being good enough
  • What may happen if you become too successful

As long as you avoid selling, you don’t have to face these fears. You’ll also never reach your goals, achieve financial freedom and make the impact you want to make in the world. Can you live with that?

Related: 7 Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Success (Without Realising It)

Identify Your Sales Story

Last month, I talked about your money story and how your limiting thoughts, beliefs, and feelings around money determine how much you can earn.

Your sales story works the same. The thoughts, beliefs, and feelings you have around sales determine how many sales (and, as a result, how much money) you can make. 

Some common sales stories include:

  • It’s wrong to charge a lot for my services, especially in this bad economy.
  • Salespeople are pushy and manipulative.
  • The only way to make money is to hard sell and use scarcity tactics.
  • If I start selling on my Instagram, I’ll get trolled and people will unfollow in droves.
  • I’m an artist/creative/coach, not a salesperson. It’s demeaning to sell my art/work.

TAKE ACTION NOW

Here are a few questions to help you identify your sales story, so you can change it:

  • What do your parents believe about sales?
  • What are your experiences with salespeople? 
  • What has been your sales pattern in your business up until now?
  • Based on everything written above, what’s your sales story?
  • Is your sales story keeping you stuck where you are or is it helping you to reach your goals?
*Affiliate links

How To Change Your Sales Story

If your sales story is sabotaging your business and keeping you from making the money and the impact you want to make, it’s time to change it. Here’s how:

Reframe Sales Into Service

Humans are hardwired to focus on the negative. If you’ve ever dealt with a pushy, manipulative, or aggressive salesperson (and who hasn’t?), it’s easy to form a story that selling is something awful you’re doing to someone.

But… Have you noticed you experience sales being a bad thing only when someone is trying to sell you something you DON’T want?

When you WANT to buy something, you don’t even realise you’re being sold to.

  • When you eat out at your fave restaurant, you happily pay the bill.
  • When you fall in love with a dress, you happily take out your credit card.
  • When a coach or programme pulls at you, you get on a call and enrol on the spot.

Can you imagine if these people had refused to sell to you? If the answer is no, don’t do the same to other people. Don’t deprive them of the help they need because you’re too scared of getting out of your comfort zone.

TAKE ACTION NOW

Make a list of all the things, programmes, and experiences you happily pay for and then answer these questions:

  • Why did you buy those things? How have they improved your life?
  • What would have happened if you had never bought those things? How different would your life be?
  • Based on your answers above, what does that tell you about sales? Has it made you change your mind? If so, how? 

Related: How To Stop The Negative Self-Talk That’s Sabotaging Your Business

Own Your Limiting Beliefs – And Heal Them

You know now you have a sales story, limiting beliefs about selling. When you’re about to have a sales conversation with someone, they WILL all come to the surface. 

I remember when I first started out, I anticipated the “it’s too expensive, I can’t afford it” objection before any sales call – and that’s exactly what happened!

Because I was not confident in saying my prices and that my work was not worth that much, my potential client felt something was off and used that as an excuse to turn down working with me. How do I know they used it as an excuse?

I later found out a couple of women who told me were almost broke found twice as much money to enrol in someone else’s programme – someone who was confident in what they were selling (sales is an expression of belief, remember?)!

I cold have been pissed (ok, I was pissed), but I also saw the lesson in it: I was projecting my own limiting beliefs and sales story on other people. Once I became confident in my pricing, I started getting yeses (even when the price was higher).

Just because you think it’s a lot of money, other people can’t afford it in this economy, or whatever your sales story is, it doesn’t mean other people think the same. Identify and heal your sales story – don’t dump it on other people.

TAKE ACTION NOW

Before you go through a sales conversation, take a few moments to journal on these questions:

  • What thoughts are running through your mind before a sales call?
  • What objections are you anticipating before a sales call?
  • Make a list of every limiting belief and objection about sales. Then cross each of them out and write the word bullshit next to them.
  • Next to each limiting belief and objection, write all the reasons why it’s not true. What else is possible instead?
  • Reframe each limiting belief and objection into a positive affirmation.

Related: Why “I Don’t Have Time” Is Just An Excuse

Don’t Convince, Clarify

Selling isn’t about convincing people to buy your products and services. If someone doesn’t want to buy from you, they won’t.

Selling is about helping your potential client come to a clear yes or no decision about working with you – and, if the answer is yes, but fear’s getting in the way, to see what’s possible for them when they decide to move past it.

A few years ago, I was on a sales call with James Williams. I knew with every fibre of my being that I wanted to enrol in I Heart Coaching BUT, the price was close to $10K and my mind was freaking out.

“I want to do this, James, but what if I don’t get results? It’s a lot money and I don’t trust myself to finish this programme when I started and abandoned so many others.” Have you ever felt the same too? 

You think the problem is the money. In reality, it goes way deeper. If you trusted yourself to do the work and get results, you know they money would come and you’d made back the investment tenfold.

James could have ended the call there and then and said, “I totally understand. It’s a big investment and if you’re not ready, it’s best if you don’t do it.”

I thank my luck star every day he DIDN’T say that. Because that would have made me feel like crap. I would have taken it as proof I’m not meant to do this and gotten a soul-sucking 9-5 job instead. 

Instead, James took the time to dig deep into my trust issues and challenged me: if I really wanted to heal this pattern, I could start right now by trusting my desire to be in the programme and that, through it, I’d get all the support I’d need to reach my goal.

James saw the potential in me when I couldn’t see it in myself. That alone made me believe I was meant to do this and put down the deposit. I didn’t regret my decision.

If someone tells you they have no interest in what you’re selling, thank them and move on.

BUT, if they tell you they want to work with you and, in the next breath, tell you why they can’t, dig deep. Speak to the version of them who can do this. Take a stand for their dreams.  Because if you don’t, who will?

Stop focusing on what people are going to think of you and start focusing on helping them getting the results they want.

Related: How To Build Trust In Yourself

Wrapping It Up

Sales are the lifeblood of your business AND your purpose. You need to sell your products and services if you want to be able to do the work you’re meant to do in the world. Whenever you feel uncomfortable selling, focus on the person in front of you. This isn’t about you. This is about them getting the support they need. If you know you can help them, it’s your duty to do so.

Are you an overwhelmed female entrepreneur, coach, or service-based provider ready to break through your current plateau and reach your next income level?

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I'm Giorgia, transformational coach on a mission to help you break through your subconscious blocks to success and become the confident leader who can make bold moves, so you can finally reach your big business and income goals without hustling.

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