Seeing as though my business makes people sweat (literally, it’s a Bikram Yoga studio), it’s not uncommon for me to constantly be thinking business and sweating, sweating and business. I use business strategies, plans, and goals to grow my studio, and I take a yogi approach (most of the time anyway!) in order to handle the stressors that come with any small business.
Last week, I read a fascinating article by Justin Bailie about making 300 cold calls in the span of 11 weeks. Three. Hundred. Cold Calls. Eek. Just re-reading that made my face pucker like I ate a lemon. Bailie, who is the head of sales for a software start up company is not new to sales. He has years and years of experience, so these 300 cold calls weren’t being made my some entry-level sales associate. As you’ll read in the article, he gained virtually no business from these calls over the 11 week span. Which isn’t totally surprising. Cold calling is tough. Building relationships with no initial common ground does not happen overnight. However, Bailie still recommends cold calling since, get this, during that time he experienced “the largest volume of inbound leads through other channels” EVER. Bailie attributes this boom in business to his cold calling exercise because he was telling the universe he was open for business.
Powerful, right? I sure thought so. But it makes so much sense. Picture going through those calls. Hour after hour, day after day, week after week. Every ounce of your being is putting out into the universe that you’re looking for a sale. You want to do business. You’re ready for a customer. Essentially, you’re open for business.
Well what about cold calling and sweating? At my studio, our clients attend classes for various reasons. Some want to lose weight, others need to build flexibility, and many more come to heal injuries and chronic pain. Yet watching these clients transform their bodies, minds, and ultimately their lives, the first benefits they receive are often not what they initially set out to achieve.
My personal experience with sweating went something like this. I wanted to practice Bikram Yoga for two reasons: 1. To lose weight. 2. To gain flexibility. And in the first 6 months of practicing, neither one happened. What I did discover, though, was how much mental relaxation the yoga allowed me to access. Congested Boston traffic and a new job didn’t get the best of me. Graduating college was a time for celebration rather than oh shoot… now what?! My yoga practice even allowed me to find peace during a painful breakup. Because through all of these life changes, I still showed up to the studio, threw my mat down, did the best I could. I didn’t realize it then, but I was telling the universe: I’m open for healing.
When you start a new exercise or fitness routine, you might not see results in the way you initially thought you would. But pay attention to how your mind is feeling. If you’re happy sweating, then keep at it. You’re getting all sorts of other amazing benefits that you had never even considered. Keep showing up. Keep trying. Going through this exercise (no pun intended!) of putting yourself in an environment of health will ultimately lead to more health. The route you take might surprise you, but you will get there in the end. By showing up, you’re telling the universe you’re opening for healing.
Happy Cold Calling, and Happy Sweating!