Get help from our network of more than 300 experts on changes big and small, personal and professional.
Stacey Mayo on Pursuing Your Dreams
Stacey Mayo, also known as “The Dream Queen,” was a pioneer in the coaching industry. The founder and director of the Center for Balanced Living, Mayo and her team of coaches have helped thousands of people live out their dreams. She is a popular speaker and the author of Is Your Ladder Leaning Against the Wrong Wall? and I Can’t Believe I Get Paid to Do This. Mayo is also a master certified coach, a member and former program chair of the International Coaching Federation (ICF), a graduate of Coach University and a certified career coach through the Rockport Institute. Here, Mayo shares some of the steps necessary for starting to pursue a dream.
Did you have any limiting beliefs when you started pursuing your dream?
Yes. I started to realize that churches were offering free career counseling services, and I wondered, “Who’s going to pay me if they can get it for free?” I had to get clear that what I offer is different, unique and much more in depth. And I had to believe that my service is worthwhile and people are willing to pay for it. I’ve used different techniques to help me reinforce those new beliefs. For example, I looked for the evidence that people would pay for coaching. I focused on what I wanted and looked for the evidence that it was possible.
What are the benefits of pursuing a dream?
There were benefits in all other areas of my life. I was so much happier. You get so used to conforming that you don’t realize how much your job doesn’t fit. I was successful in the corporate world, I was making a six-figure income, but it just didn’t fit. I’m much better off making my own rules and working in a more informal atmosphere. I didn’t know that about myself before. I’m much more myself now—more authentically me.
What are your three steps for pursuing a dream?
Get in touch with your passion. To start my dream, I really got in touch with my passion. I saw people going to work every day and being miserable, and I saw workaholics who lost their marriages over it. I just knew it could be different, and I was passionate about people having a career and a life they loved.
You can only spread your energy so far. I got frustrated because I wasn’t giving my all to my job, and I wasn’t making that much progress getting my business started. Eventually I decided that wasn’t working and I needed something different, so I gave a one-year notice. I arranged to work 25 to 30 hours a week, not go to any corporate meetings, and get paid the same. But when the first corporate meeting came up that I didn’t go to, my bosses got upset and said I’d have to attend the meetings or move on. That was the decision point.
Find coaches and mentors. The biggest thing that shortened my learning curve was getting a really good mentor coach. My learning increased exponentially and I became a much better coach as a result. Now I mentor other coaches.
What is the belief you personally go to during times of change?
It’s not that I don’t get scared; it’s about not letting the fear stop me. What helps me is to ask myself, “What do I want and why do I want it?” I think about why I want something, I envision myself having it and I get a lot of support.
The best thing about change is…
…you’re never bored.
What is the best change you have ever made?
Starting my own business. It’s been the catalyst for everything that’s happened since then. Following my own dream, following my passion, following my heart—starting the business was the first step in all of that.
For more information on Stacey Mayo, visit www.balancedliving.com.