In the past few weeks, I have talked to a ton of people who are looking for strategies for their upcoming year. Some of them know exactlywhat they want to do, and they don't know quite how to get there. Others are unsure of what to do, because they have a lot of different things they want to do, but they just can't quite figure out the right'model' for it to happen, or fit it in with their family, or their jobs, or they don't have land, or whatever. It's been enlightening to hear each person's dreams and vision. It's been an honor, really. (Thank you, everyone, for trusting me with your deepest passion and path.) But the saddest part of these conversations is when I talk to people who have been teaching for years and years and years, sharing nature skills, tracking or bushcraft, and I realize that these people are making hardly any money at all. They are so good at what they do, and so generous, and giving of their time, and they are mostly dead broke. You'd be surprised at how many of them there are like this. They have seen, taught and spoken to thousands of people over their years, but they have no email or mailing list. They have no way to reach all these wonderful people who could fill their workshops or programs. They are almost all undercharging for the value they are providing, and when they only get three or four or eight people in their classes, they are barely getting by. They are mostly not using any real strategy to fill their classes. They are using what I call the "Hope Method". They're HOPING that the class that THEY are excited about will be exciting to their clients. They're HOPING that students will find a flyer in a health food store, and HOPING it doesn't get covered by someone else's Yoga workshop flyer 45 minutes after they post it. They're HOPING a school will call them to work with their students. They're HOPING that the price they set for their services will be okay, and keeping it low, because they really, really, really need the money. They struggle to fill classes, so they believe that the reason people won't show up for a class is because everyone is broke. Which isn't true. Honestly, that's just a made up story that people tell themselves (and they actually believe it) when the hard fact is that it's mostly because not enough people know about them, or they're confused at what you do. Their potential students just don't understand what you do. The crazy thing is, these people have great skills and deliver amazing value. They know how to go about making a hunting bow out of a stick. They know how to build a shelter out of bark and logs, and leaves. They know how to make an arrowhead out of rock. All of those skills are possible because they learned a STRATEGY, an approach, to make it happen. They learned the skills to do it. Just to be clear, these people spent good money to go to a class or intensive or training, including travel expenses, etc, and learned from someone who's skills they trusted. Then, they practiced, and got the tools and figured it out. Doing it this way is a lot easier with coaching, with mentoring, and with an instructor who can guide you through it. If you don't have that, you are going to take a long, long time to learn to make an arrowhead. I mean, you're going to struggle. You're going to make a lot of gravel. You're going to be massively frustrated. It's the same for a bow or a luxurious soft buckskin dress or shirt. You can't get there on your own, quickly and easily. It's gonna be a hot mess, while you reinvent the wheel. Ugh. If you're happy reinventing the wheel, awesome. Some people love to do it that way. You will save some money. But you will more than pay for it with wasted materials, effort, time and energy. There's nothing I hate more than to do a lot of work preparing for a class and then having to cancel due to lack of students. All that work is wasted. All that scheduled time, lost. Now, it's a scramble to make up that income, or whatever, or fill that time slot at the last minute. Of course, when that happens, we figure it out. We make do. You see, a lot of you are really, really good at being broke and 'working it out." But you don't actually have to do that. Imagine if you took that ingenuity, that tenacity, and applied it with a great strategy? Holy crap, it would be a total game changer. So, learning how to make a successful workshop, or book launch, or program launch is important. There are key things that you can do that make a world of difference. It's kind of like fishing, really. I mean, you can have the nicest hook in the world, but if you don't have any bait on it, you probably aren't going to catch anything. And if you have the wrong kind of bait, you're going to catch a different kind of fish than what you actually are going for. Here are the keys you need to know, if you want to create a good strategy. These are elements that can help you, whether you are running a Forest Preschool, or a Tracking or Skills School, or whether you are running a Massage Practice, or selling Backyard Honey or Free Range Eggs. You have to connect with your tribe, your community. You have to share who you are, and your 'why', and your passion. You have to listen to what they want, and what they are needing, and what they are struggling with in their lives. You have to create a program that is tailored to THEM, that will get results for them, and make a difference for their lives. You also have to explain the value of what you do, in terms of those results, to your community, so they get it. And, you have to be clear in your point of view, and know, without a question or doubt, that you are changing lives, and that whatever it is you are charging is going to be completely worth it. You have to value yourself and your work. If you don't believe in yourself, or your work, you won't feel right charging whatever it is you are charging for it. You're going to have what Tony Robbins calls "The Internal Conflicts". The Internal Conflicts are killers. They totally hamstring your efforts to bring your vision to life. So, this is where a coach comes in. A coach can help you with the strategy, and with the internal conflicts. You have to supply the desire, the passion and the willingness to do this work. The combination is amazing. It's called success. I know many of you are probably sick of hearing about all this stuff. You probably think it doesn't apply to you. Maybe you're right. Maybe it doesn't. Honestly, though, this isn't just about creating a nature business. This kind of understanding is about how you navigate your life, your relationships, your families, your work. Everything. I believe this is the fastest way to change the world. By working with people to help them get out of their own way, give them a strategy so they can get where they want to go, and achieve powerful success. And everything I have just shared in this email is something I have done myself, and am continuing to do, with my life, with my work with coaching, and with my camp Hawk Circle and my community. It's completely changed my life. I've gone from being bitter, angry, hurt, stressed, broke and frustrated, (at times!) to the complete opposite. If you think it's about money, or sales, or marketing schemes, or any of that, you're dead wrong. It's about learning to be effective, and to get results, and to value yourself, and love yourself. To be empowered. Because you aren't going to change the world, to create the world we really want, unless we have those qualities, and actually live them, and role model them, every day, for everyone around us. That's actually what attracts clients to you. That's what attracts success. That's what makes change. Fear won't do it. Anger won't do it. Being Logical, or just Intellectual, won't do it. We need to live it.