What Being a Bad Date Taught Me About Business

I was panicked: I had just lost my two biggest clients. One company's venture funding ran out, and the other one was sold and changed its business model. I was out of business myself unless I got some new clients - soon.

So, I got busy! Calling old friends, cold-calling potential clients, making LinkedIn contacts all over the place. But still, the phone wasn’t ringing. The weeks went on and my panic was growing, but something told me to sit and get quiet and figure this out. So I put down the phone for a minute, took a deep breath and asked: what’s going on? What am I doing wrong?

And the answer came back: Amy, you’re being a bad date. That made me laugh, but I knew exactly what it meant. We’ve all had “bad date” moments with an over-eager salesperson, pushing a product whether it’s a good fit or not. You can’t get away from them fast enough.

Just like that bad date, I felt needy and was desperate for my new “dates” to like me. I was focused on what I needed (new business) and not on what they needed - solutions to their problems. No wonder they weren’t calling me back!

I knew then that I had to change, but how? I was so stressed out that I didn’t know where to start.

So I began with something I’d lost - a sense of gratitude. At night before bed, and in the morning when I woke up, I meditated on the things that I felt grateful for. And I felt a little calmer. I breathed a little easier. I glimpsed a sense of peace through the tunnel of stress and anxiety.

Instead of thinking of my list as calls to make, I thought about how I had connected with those people in the first place. I could get on the phone and relate a funny story about a mutual friend or an old project. I thanked people for work we had done in the past and for staying in touch. Finally, I asked how I could connect them with someone I knew or how I could help them with what’s going on now.  

Then a miracle happened - the phone started ringing! Within just a few days, my fortunes changed and I was back in the flow of business again with no lasting damage. There was even a gift from living through all that stress: sharing the lessons I learned about stress, worry, and the gifts of gratitude. 

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My "secret" mission is to help raise the positive vibration of the planet! We can all make this happen if we let our light shine and help others do the same. Here are some places to start:

  • The Gratitude Connection is full of simple stress-reduction methods and other positive practices to increase your happiness and success.
  • Positively Powered - the podcast for people using their powers for good! Subscribe to hear authors, artists, and entrepreneurs discuss their tips and tricks for happiness and success. 
  • Check out my free resources, meditations, classes, and coaching programs at AmyCollette.com

(This article was originally published on Amy's page on LinkedIn.)