How many times each week do you say or think “I WOULD do that but…”?

Every time you do, it immediately shows that you don’t have the freedom you want.

I’ve done some epic stuff over the last 18 months including cycling across America, rattling around New Zealand and up the east coast of Oz then spending time training, sunbathing and working around Asia.

Often when I talk about freedom with people, the conversation pretty quickly turns to where they want to go on holiday.

Geographical freedom can be part of it, but I want to get your mindset straight on what ‘Freedom’ really means because it will change how you approach every part of your fitness business.

Freedom is the space between a stimulus and your reaction.

The larger the space, the more freedom you have.

Importantly, the larger the space, the more you are likely to react in a way that serves how you want to live your life and what will move your forward (rather than creating more problems which is what most of our reactions do!)

Most people spend their days in a mental ‘prison’ with no freedom.

Their anxieties and worries cause them to react like a Tiger cornered in a cage.

They lash out and have no freedom over the decisions they make.

This is why freedom is so important to slowly and steadily creating the life you want.

Freedom isn’t a point in time that you reach when you feel the release of the shackles that currently keep you down.

It’s not that amazing feeling when you’ve finished your school exams.

Freedom is a decision-making methodology.

It’s the ability to avoid an emotional reaction to all the chaos that surrounds us, and instead remain calm and focused on the prize.

Think about five common situations in and around your fitness business.

  1. You know a potential client won’t do very well because within 5 minutes of meeting them it is evident that their attitude sucks, but you sign them up immediately without a second thought because you need the money. There is no freedom. 
  2. You want to get in great shape because life got in the way and you got fat, but haven’t got time to do the food prep that you advise to all of your clients. There is no freedom. 
  3. You want to go the game on Saturday but by the time you’ve coached your morning bootcamps, there’s no way you’ll make it. There is no freedom. 
  4. You get an invite to a masterminding event in faraway tropical country but you automatically reply “I wish I had the time and money” before they’ve even finished their sentence. There is no freedom. 
  5. You want to do a local Mud Run challenge but you’ve been solely focused on bodybuilding for 2 years and now have the conditioning of a 70 year old Walrus. There is no freedom.

All of these are real life examples from by Fitness Business Freedom clients.

In each instance, their is a clear lack of freedom.

The reaction is determined by that lack of freedom.

Creating freedom is about cultivating space between the appearance of an opportunity and the reaction/decision.

One of the first things I like to do with clients who face similar obstacles is to work out where the least amount of space exists between the opportunities and decisions they want to make.

The answers will invariably be one or more of the following:

  1. Time management (including calculating how much you want to earn, how many hours you want to spend generating that income, what you must charge per hour and what skills are required to enable that). 
  2. Systemising different areas of the business and delegating lower value tasks to other people so they either have more available time to spend on higher value activities, business development or to actually have some more of the mythical ‘spare time’. 
  3. Identification and strengthening of personal values. This creates freedom because you are much less likely to be drawn to reactions based on hype, reactive emotions and crowd think. When you know what you stand for you have significantly fewer filters to run a decision through. The decision making process is much clearer with fewer trip wires, ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’.

Freedom doesn’t simply come from earning a truck load more money and focusing on that can often take away the type of freedom you really lack.

There’s a lot of overlap with these factors and you probably see it with your personal training clients.

They say they struggle with food choices because they don’t have a food ‘system’ and can’t operate one because they’re always under constant time pressures.

There is no space between the stimulus (needing food) and the reaction (diving into the fridge or patisserie aisle).

The reality is that if you can coach them to understand their own values in life, they will come to see that they DO have time, it’s just currently being spent on many things that don’t really hold any value to them.

As a result, they have no ‘freedom’ because every reaction comes off the back of a very tiny decision-making window before rushing on to the next task…

…and so the cycle continues!

High level, conscious coaching comes from finding what your client needs most right now to create ‘freedom’.

Similarly, the first steps to creating the fitness business you want come from finding out what your personal values are, what life would look like if you were living by those values and eliminating anything and everything that doesn’t serve that path.

This is simpler than many people seem to think.

If it (including people) doesn’t serve the path you want to walk down, no amount of thinking about it and hoping things will change will send you off in the right direction!

Maybe you need to change your training plan so you can take part in a variety of events.

Maybe you need to change the employment structure in your business.

Maybe you need to change your pricing and how many people you train in a session.

All of these are steps to creating different types of freedom.

Sure, things won’t always happen overnight but every small step gives you greater freedom to take advantage of every opportunity that WILL come along soon to enable it to happen.

Remember, if you want to fill the cup with amazing things, first you must empty it…

Focus on creating freedom in your business and you’ll find it much more successful and fulfilling in the long-run.

Beware of succeeding at what you don’t want…