Finding Your Ikigai - Accelerate Your NicheFeb 23, 2021
By Teresa Peters
It’s Valentine’s week, and what better topic is there than how to find your true love! And I’m not talking about humans! Have you ever explored your Ikigai? Your reason for being! What your niche in business could be?
Ikigai is the intersection of what you love, what you are good at, what you can be paid well for and what the world needs. This is how we define ‘niche’ - something you’re passionate about, is practical from a business perspective, and does good for the world
To find something that encompasses all four aspects, let’s first look at the trajectory of your life and career that have led you to this point. Grab a piece of paper and a pen because we’re going to work through the key personal and professional milestones together that have shaped how you approach your work. These will provide foundational insights that will help you define what you are most passionate and uniquely positioned to provide to your chosen audience.
Start by writing a squiggly line on the paper. At the start put the year that you were 18 years old and then at the end write ‘Today’.
Now, start writing down anything that comes to mind about what contributed to you being where you are now and where you want to get to in your career. Take 10 minutes, no longer, and just map it all out on a chronological timeline.
Include everything you would consider formative or a landmark experience in your development as a person and coach, such as:
Connections in your network
Opportunities & Encounters (anything serendipitous that you didn’t plan for).
WHAT DO YOU LOVE THE MOST ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS OR CAREER?
With your work, where do you get in flow - getting completely absorbed in the work without noticing hours passing by?
What kind of success level do you like working with?
What kind of clients do you love to work with?
What kind of work do you love to do?
Which challenges do you love to support your clients with?
Which topics make you go down a rabbit hole? What do you wish you had more time to research and investigate?
What do other people in business invite you to do with them (or for them), knowing you’ll be excited about it?
Which pain points of your clients do you love to help with?
What do you wish you got to do more with clients?
WHAT ARE YOU GOOD AT?
What part of your work feels so easy to you that you feel a bit guilty getting paid for it?
What pain or need are you uniquely qualified to solve?
What topics do you feel confident explaining whenever asked?
What do you find yourself naturally helping others with?
Which industry do you feel you can add most value in?
WHAT DO YOU (OR COULD YOU) GET PAID FOR? (THIS PART WILL LIKELY REQUIRE THE MOST EXTERNAL RESEARCH.)
What is your main professional role?
What have you been paid for in the past?
What are the coaching roles or projects that have paid you the most in the past?
What potential lucrative future opportunities have you identified?
What are the coaching roles or projects that pay you the most now?
Where is there a high level of demand in the market where you can provide your services?
What are 3 or 4 ‘side hustles’ you could spend a few hours doing each week to generate some significant additional income?
WHAT DOES THE WORLD NEED THAT YOU CAN PROVIDE? (IDEALLY, YOU WILL READ THIS AS WHAT IS GOOD FOR THE WORLD.)
Which groups in the working world could benefit highly from your skills?
What is the biggest common pain that you have identified that you are able to solve?
What specific needs are there in the marketplace right now?
How could your coaching help a lot of people in need?
Where is there a current need that is not currently being serviced by others?
By now you will have identified something that you love, are good at, can get paid well for and that the world needs. You’ll notice that some topics overlap, and this is when the magic happens. You are on your way to finding your ‘true love’. And remember, no one can love you more than you love yourself. And you’ll love yourself more than ever once you find your ‘reason for being’, which is Japanese for ‘Ikigai’.
There is so much more to this topic and I have a wealth of workbooks for my clients. I also offer a free 30-minute ignition session.
Teresa Peters is our resident Geordie Accelerator Coach! Do you find yourself driving through a thick fog because your personal life and business has become convoluted? As an ICF accredited Executive Coach and Personal Performance Coach, Teresa empowers you to find clarity, focus and transformation, both professionally and personally, using a solution- focused approach and DiSC profiling. She has 2 successful businesses – one as co-founder of a book publisher for the hospitality sector (which has had to pause during lockdown) and her main business – Accelerator Coaching .
Teresa offers a range of online and face to face support services to both male and female business owners and their teams. She finds great joy in working with couples and families who run businesses together, those making life changing decisions post redundancy or post hysterectomy who need a dynamic energetic champion and critical friend to unleash their full potential.
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