People go on psychedelic trips to peel back the onion layers, allowing them to heal, grow and flourish. Businesses need this too!
Businesses are separate from the one that birthed them – their founder. They can be viewed as living, breathing entities that go through stages of change and evolution.
Here’s a prime example: Therapy.
Traditionally, coaches or therapists see clients in private 1:1 sessions or maybe two at a time for couples counseling. This business model hasn’t really changed since inception, which means the coach is likely:
- over-scheduled with back-to-back-to-back appointments
- not getting enough time for quality self-care so they can recharge
- confined by limited hours in a day to helping only a small number of people
- overwhelmed by running the business AND fulfilling the service
- laboriously trading hours for dollars
- and a lot more…
It’s time for an upgrade!
We can use some of the principles of the psychedelic experience to help us traverse the challenges of the business world.
When embarking on a journey with plant medicine, there are three key steps that will help us on the path to self-development and personal growth: preparation, surrender, and integration. We can apply the same approach to our businesses to help them thrive.
I’m the founder of a marketing agency that helps conscious healers transform their business and the world by using this psychedelic approach.
I specialize in supporting coaches and therapists to evolve from a 1:1 to 1:many client model but the psychedelic approach isn’t just for therapy – it can be used with any type of business.
Before I go into detail about that, let’s discuss the lessons you’ll learn as you upgrade.
5 Lessons Overwhelmed Business Owners Can Learn
Lesson #1 – Sacrificing Your Personal Time For Work
We’ve all been guilty of putting ourselves last, especially in the healthcare industry.
Instead of taking care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally...
Instead of expressing and reinforcing your boundaries with colleagues and clients…
Instead of spending time with your loved ones like you promised...
You bend over backward to accommodate their requests because you don’t want to upset or disappoint. You compromise yourself and allow people to walk over you because of your people-pleasing habit. On a deeper level, what you’re really saying is that you don’t think you’re as important as the people you serve.
What do you think happens when you do this to yourself over years or even decades?
A lot of things, including:
- Resentment, overwhelm, burn out
- A lack of joy or satisfaction in your work
- Finding yourself out of sync with who you want to be versus who you are being
- Compromising on your personal values
- Low self-trust and self-worth
What most people don’t realize is that in order for your business to evolve, YOU also need to evolve. Building a business is a journey of self-discovery and self-development on its own. Gone are the days of work-life balance, it’s all about work-life integration now. So because there is no barrier between work and personal, depriving and not nurturing yourself will have a similar effect on your business
Ask yourself: what’s more important to you: holding onto your old ways of working or honoring yourself? If the latter, what are you willing to do about it? Do the long-term benefits of changing your ways outweigh the initial discomfort you’ll feel?
Remember, as the wise flight attendant always says “put the oxygen mask on yourself first before helping others.”
Lesson #2 – Helping Everyone and Anyone
You’re not a Walmart or Costco who have deep pockets and a giant distribution channel to appeal to the mass public without customization. You and your services are as unique as a snowflake. You’re not meant for everyone (no one is!) and that’s perfectly fine. As you already know, when you try to please everyone, you end up pleasing no one. This means you should practice discernment and intentionality with who you collaborate with.
What happens when you try to please everyone? Some of the major outcomes could be:
- Superficial connection with who you’re helping
- Monetary transactions rather than soul-aligned work
- Attracting less-than-ideal clients
- Feeling depleted by spending unnecessary energy
I think it’s safe to say no one wants to experience any of the above. So, rather than trying to help everyone and anyone that comes your way, focus on one particular client persona. Ideally, you will have walked in their shoes before. Because of your personal history, you’ve gained the wisdom and empathy to help others walk the journey and allow for them to easily relate back to you.
Ask yourself: is there a certain gender, culture or location that you resonate with? What are the causes you deeply care about? What are the challenges you overcame in life? What led you to enter the psychedelic world?
Lesson #3 – Having a Disconnected Funnel
I see this mistake all the time – most aren’t even aware of it. The overwhelmed business owner has typically heard of an evergreen funnel but doesn’t quite understand what it is. For those who don’t know:
A funnel is the blueprint of your entire business. It’s an automated system with a series of steps that take people who don’t know who you are at all and turn them into a lifelong raving fan.
This includes everything from how you acquire leads (traffic channels) to all the different services and products you offer (lead magnet, tripwire, core offer) to how you deepen a relationship with your audience to lead them to the next step in your funnel (email series vs campaigns).
See below funnel map for a visual example.
Business owners often just start offering a hodgepodge of things that their clients or colleagues ask for, without taking into consideration how everything needs to fit together in order to work, which leads to a disconnected funnel.
Having a disconnected funnel can lead to:
- Wasting time on manual, repetitive, admin-heavy tasks
- Trouble converting and retaining paying clients
- Making less money than you want or, worse, not breaking even
- Too many offers that aren’t validated or no one is buying
- Headaches, frustrations & confusion galore
Listen, I get it. You’re not to blame, especially if you weren’t even aware of it. You hold the identity of an entrepreneur …even if you don’t want to believe or acknowledge it – it’s a fact.
Now that you know what a funnel is, ask yourself:
How is your current funnel serving you? How can it be improved? What’s holding you back from making changes? Successful entrepreneurs know to learn just enough so they can get help to fix it.
Lesson #4 – Doing It All Yourself
Anyone who has tried wearing 358 hats before knows very well that this is an unsustainable, broken model. When you’re the salesperson, HR, accountant, tech support, and operations manager, that’s a quick path to nowhere. It takes a village to raise a child. Growing a business is really no different.
When you try to do everything yourself, what happens?
- Overwhelmed and exhausted from juggling so many different things
- Heavy with worry about the future of your business
- Frustrated that things are going slower than you like
- Disappointed at the quality of results from the cheap help you did hire
- Resistant to regularly getting pulled outside of your area of expertise
No one ever said being an entrepreneur is easy. There are lots of triggers and traumas that this path can unearth. There might be childhood conditioning, especially surrounding money (or lack thereof), that needs to shift. It’s a journey of discovering and refining self-worth. It really is a type of medicine in its own right.
However, the choice to seek out and learn these lessons is still up to you. Remember that you didn’t take all this risk to become a business owner so you can spend your time doing marketing. You became one so you can follow your passion and to use your skills to have a positive impact on the world.
That’s even more reason to stay in your zone of genius and continue to do what you do best. This means to allow others to take over the functions you’re less excited about – like accounting, operations, sales, and marketing.
Some questions to ponder:
- How willing are you to peel back your own layers and learn those lessons?
- Have you thought about why you feel like you have to do everything yourself?
- Do you have a lack of trust in others or the need to control everything to feel safe?
- Where else in your life do you show up like this?
Lesson #5 – Not Charging Enough
A painfully common issue, especially for first-time founders is that they tend to price themselves really low. Too low.
What’s the impact of pricing too low?
- Unequal exchange of energy
- Feeling taken advantage of or resentful
- Attracting less-than-ideal clients
- Not enough capital to reinvest into and grow your business
Your business is an extension and reflection of you. From how you run the day-to-day, to your bigger vision to how much you charge. Oftentimes, people think pricing is decided by how much it costs you to produce the product/service X a multiple. Or they look at what three to five colleagues in the same niche are charging and take the average. Or charging what you think you’re worth.
Instead what I recommend doing is charging the value of your product/service. You see, there’s a difference between price and value. Value is tricky to figure out, especially if you’re new to your market because it’s different based on who you ask. But it’s not impossible to find out.
- Are you charging the true value of your product / service?
- What makes you charge what you charge?
- Can you justify to your clients a 10% increase in your pricing?
Of course, I’m not recommending that you increase prices just to make a bit more money. You might already be charging the right amount. What’s important is that you’re mindful of your true value.
What does what you’re currently charging say about your self-worth?
How To Take Your Business On A Psychedelic Trip
Now that you understand the lessons you’ll go through, it’s time to upgrade.
It’s time to evolve so you can take some time and mental headspace back, and you can refocus your energy on things you enjoy doing.
There are 3 stages.
Stage 1 – Prepare
Just like a psychedelic trip, you want to prepare yourself with the right set and setting, the right intentions, and a clear plan of what you’re working on during the journey. Apply the same concepts to your business. This means looking at what stage your business is at right now and giving it an audit.
What does your funnel look like? Do you have a lead magnet, tripwire, or nurture series? How do they all work together… or does it not? What is your conversion rate and revenue at each stage? Literally, draw it out. Map out your entire funnel.
Many people ask me if they can just skip this stage because they don’t have a lot to begin with. I would argue that this is the most crucial stage. I mean, would you ever tell people to not prepare for shamanic ceremony when you know they’ll be doing a lot of deep, self-healing work? Probably not the wisest choice, right?
One thing to look out for here is… your own biases. Because you’re so close and attached to your business, it’s hard to see your own blind spots, and you don’t know what you don’t know. So, it’s best to get someone else with a subjective frame of mind to audit your funnel for you.
Stage 2 – Surrender
Now that we’re fully prepared for our psychedelic trip, we take the medicine and let it show us where to go. You’ll be pushed and shoved into places you won’t be comfortable with. You’ll be shown things you may not want to see, or be ready to see. You’ll uncover mysteries about yourself, your past, your family you never thought about.
You can run away, hide, latch onto your ego, or you can surrender to the experience and trust the process. The universe always wants what’s best for you. Everything that happens to you is for your highest learning and greatest good. Once you remember this, every tumble, every fall, every challenge can be viewed differently. As a gift instead of a bother.
The same concept applies to your business. This stage is all about breaking down and rebuilding your funnel to break through. While your business undergoes transformation – deleting web pages that are outdated, restructuring processes that are broken, reinventing offers that don’t entice – there will be times of uncertainty, doubt and discomfort. You already know that this is where growth stems from.
What you need to remember is that you’re clearing out the old to make room for the new, so lean into it and hold steady. Unfortunately, it’s hard for me to advise on how to execute this stage without looking at a specific business as each funnel is different.
Stage 3 – Integrate
People in the psychedelic space always say that integration is the most important part of any psychedelic journey, and that it’s a long-life healing process. I completely agree! Again, this concept applies to your business.
In this stage, we continually integrate all the lessons we have learned from managing your new-and-improved funnel. Based on the data, we can make informed decisions about what to test and optimize. Too many business owners ask me if they can skip this part or only do it for a few months. Think of the funnel as a sports car, and traffic as the fuel. Without traffic, your funnel can’t go anywhere.
Or another analogy is saying you only need to meditate for 10 minutes a day for 2 weeks and all your problems will be solved. We’re all so into instant gratification nowadays. When we don’t get what we want, we just move onto the next thing. Where has commitment, discipline and responsibility gone? Growth, both personally and professionally, doesn’t come easy but it’s definitely worth it.
There may be some evergreen funnel concepts you don’t understand yet – like testing, traffic, lead magnet, conversion rate, tripwires – which is perfectly fine. We all start somewhere. The important thing is to start learning about it now.
Now you know the five lessons overwhelmed business owners go through during their own transformation and the three stages to take your business through for a psychedelic journey.
I hope you learned a lot today. I hope this article allows you to stop and reflect on where you’re at, where you want to go, and gives you ideas on how to get there. My wish is for you to have everything you ever want in life, to help as many people as you possibly can, and to help move the psychedelic renaissance forward as we refine what medicine is for the collective.
If you have any questions or comments about this article, even if you have a completely different point of view, please post below. We’d love to continue the conversation!
Bea Chan is founder of AKITA Agency. After magical trips of her own, Bea dedicated her marketing agency to help conscious healers transform the world by first transforming their business. Supporting coaches/therapists evolve from a 1:1 to 1:many client model with online courses and group coaching programs is her jam! Learn about evergreen funnels and take your business on a psychedelic trip with our free training: https://akitagency.com