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I'm Mara — I help creatives create and launch digital courses and profitable products. I love chatting about online marketing, design and goal setting!

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Finding Your Lifetime Vision with Coach Meg Smidt

Coach Meg Smidt

Listen on: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher 

In this episode, I sat down with one of the few people who was there alllll the way at the beginning of my business…before there even really was a business! Meg Smidt of Your Coach Meg has worked with so many different business owners, moms, and creatives from every industry and niche, and she’s here to share some of her wisdom and experience on life goals planning and setting a strong lifetime vision.

 Episode Highlights

  • My coaching experience with Meg
  • How we worked together to set my lifetime vision 
  • Practical life goals planning tips from Meg
  • How to find your core values
  • Aligning your life with what matters to you most
  • When it’s time to hire a coach

My experience with Meg

I first worked with Meg in 2018, and even though she was my business coach, I think of her as a total life coach (because we talked about life stuff, too!) I was teaching full-time and I was…not fulfilled. I’d already been freelancing and trying to get my own business off the ground for almost 10 years! I knew that’s what I wanted to do, but I was looking for next steps. In other words, I had a lifetime vision of the future, but I had no idea how to actually get there when I started with Meg.

Setting a lifetime vision with Meg

One of the first things Meg does with any client is heavy work on figuring out your unique vision for your life. We started with a huge list of core values that Meg had me narrow down to just a few words: love, happiness, and freedom. The goal was to build a business that aligned with the way I wanted to live out my core values, but it didn’t feel like I ever had extra time and energy to invest after teaching. When Meg asked how many hours I was spending on teaching each week, I realized I was spending about 70 hours per week.

No wonder I was finding it hard to make progress! Meg challenged me to align my actions with my goals and spend less time focusing on being the world’s best teacher and take back some of those hours to build my business. My goal was to be able to quit teaching in a year, but once I took back those 30 extra hours each week, it was a matter of MONTHS, which is kind of crazy!

Meg’s go-to exercises for value-led life goals planning

Typically, coaching is very client-driven. Someone has a professional goal, so they go to a coach, explain what they want to focus on, and the coach will help them do it. Meg likes to take a few steps back and get to the core of her clients’ lives and focus on values first, so once it’s time for goals they’re more likely to be successful where they are. While Meg is definitely going to help you get from where you are to where you want to be, she’s also going to help you notice some other vital pieces that might not be on your radar yet! (That’s why I think of her more like a “whole life” coach!) Here are some of Meg’s tips for setting a lifetime vision.

Find your core values

Figuring out your own three words can help you get clear on who you really are at your core. They’re ultimately the whole foundation of your personal and professional identity! Once you know what they are, it’s easier to walk them out in the rest of your life and start making progress. If you want to give it a try, download Meg’s core value sheet on her blog and do this exercise:

  • Take a look at all the options on the sheet (there are a lot!) and cross off the ones that don’t speak to you at all. 
  • If you find yourself asking if something should be a core value, cross that one off, too! This isn’t about what you feel like you should do; it’s about what truly speaks to you.
  • Work until you’ve narrowed the list down to 15-20 words. 
  • If you notice similar words, like fun, joy, and happiness, are on the list, choose the one that resonates with you the most. 
  • Keep going until you’ve whittled it down to five, then rank them in order of importance.
  • The top three are your three core values.

 Set priorities that align with your core values

This is where the magic happens! Meg has a ton of resources on her website that can help you get clear on where your resources are going and how to shift things to line up with your actual priorities. 

In order to get super clear on your priorities, set a distinct vision from now until the end of the year. Start small! Choose one to four main areas of focus, whether they’re life things or professional goals. The only criteria is that they should help you move closer to becoming the person you want to be.

When I started working with Meg, one of my areas of focus was a big decluttering project. We had recently moved, and even though it had nothing to do with my business on the surface, I constantly felt distracted as long as I was surrounded by chaos. And you know what? It helped!

Understand where your time is going

Walk through a typical day and honestly evaluate where your time is going…and where it needs to be going. Think about how much time you’d like to spend on clients, your day job (if you have one), and time with your friends and family.

Meg’s biggest tip is to think about more than money! Instead, focus on what makes you feel balanced and allows you to offer your best to people.

Make time for self care

We often talk about self care as the little things, like taking a bath every Saturday, going out for a long walk, or doing your skincare routine every night. But Meg reminded me self-care is about making time for the things that give you more balance and prevent burnout. It’s OK to spend less time on your business if that’s what you need right now! It’s also fine to put yourself first (if, for example, you’re a teacher working 70 hours per week!)

We all have complex layers to what we do in our jobs and lives, and it’s so important that we take care of ourselves so we can keep all those things going.

Where people get stuck in analysis paralysis with life goals planning

After working with so many clients, here’s where Meg says people commonly get caught up in the details.

  • The course-taking cycle. Learning is great, but at some point, you have to take action!
  • Doubt and fear. Sometimes putting yourself out there as an authority or defining your ideal client and niche feels super scary, but remember: you know your brand best!
  • Charging people money. In the beginning, it feels SO exciting to help people and get paid…but remember, you’re building a business.
  • Taking yourself seriously. If you don’t treat yourself like a business, no one else will.
  • Protect CEO time. I like to think of it like there’s CEO Mara who sets the calendar and goals, then employee Mara shows up for implementation. They’re both important!

When is it time to hire a coach?

There are a million different places to invest in yourself to grow your business. Courses are so important for learning skills and masterminds are incredible places to network and learn what everyone else is doing in their businesses. But it can be easy to get caught in that cycle without ever really moving forward.

If you feel like you’re buying course after course and joining masterminds, but still not moving the needle from where you are to where you want to be, then it’s time to consider a one-on-one coach! They can help you tailor-make a game plan to meet your goals, then hold you accountable to achieving them.

Links mentioned

Want to hear more from Meg?

Listen to the full episode for our entire conversation – Meg shared so many amazing nuggets of wisdom! Her website is also packed with blogs, downloads, workbooks, and resources to get you started on lifetime vision and goals planning. Plus, she has a super fun shop called Less Bitter More Glitter, which is filled with joyful prints, supplies, and gifts. She also hosts a mastermind cohort called Business as Unusual, where the next cohort will kick off in January 2024. You can also find Meg on Instagram.

*This post may contain affiliate links.