I was introduced to the words 'ideal client' when I got myself into the coaching industry. Prior to coaching, I was a healer who was trained to never turn away any client who reached out. This agreed with me too. In coaching it was different.
To me an ideal client is someone who is a good fit to work together. I had all the qualities and characteristics of my ideal client written down. I desired to coach women who were coaches, healers and creative entrepreneurs. However, in reality I was receiving men who wanted to either be coached or explore if coaching was right for them at the time. I wasn't liking this one bit and had a lot of resistance toward having conversations with men.
The coach I was working with back then suggested that I go with the flow. For me, this meant to just be available to this moment where I am and as I am. So, if a man shows up as a potential client then to share a conversation and see if it leads to him being a client. For the highest good of both of us, of course! This turned out to be tougher than I thought. There were a couple of conversations where the men were willing to sign up for a coaching package but the resistance in me was too strong. Thus I made it difficult for them to consider working with me. I suggested another coach/mentor/program, provided helpful resources, shared a few relevant experiences. I turned them away from being my client.
The message I was sending out was that 'I want a client but it is not you, so go away'. But then, my ideal clients did not show up either.
It was obvious something was going on with me that I did not want to see. It was time for me to face my inner resistance.
I asked myself - can I retreat to the safety of the masculine with complete trust?
The moment I asked the question to myself I had a mind-body reaction of extreme stress and tightness. The feeling was intense fear. When I voiced out this fear to hear what it was all about I received that :
I was afraid I would be used as a dumping ground for their unfulfilled desires, unmet emotional needs and dense emotions like anger, guilt, shame, fear.
I was afraid I would become their emotional housekeeper.
I was afraid I would give my power away, making me available to be energetically drained and consumed.
I was using the excuse that men are not my ideal client to hide behind these fears. Powerful insight for me!
This is where my personal development training came forward to support and assist. I always look for pattern match because that is how we contribute to being available for what we do not want (and what we want as well!). As a client myself of the programs/coaches/mentors that I worked with in the past, I was looking to be rescued by them...waiting for them to change my life. The pattern match here was :
I reach out as a client and expect myself to be rescued = I receive clients so that I can rescue them.
All those fears were of the rescuer in me, to which a deeper part of me did not resonate at all. Identifying this pattern behind the fears and working to clear it all on a mind-body level gave me clarity, which made action simple + elegant + easy. I realised that I prefer working with women because I love coaching based on my own experiences. I desire to empower and be empowered. Releasing the fears and the unnecessary drama around the fears gave me the power to make my choice from a place of love and self compassion.
Are you waiting for your ideal clients to find you and thus turning away those who are reaching out to you? Tune within and explore what is going on for you when you are in a conversation with who you think is your not so ideal client. Sometimes a simple awareness can create a massive shift that leads us to clarity, inspired action and being available to serve powerfully.