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Business that doesn’t exist

Dear Maria,

The letter I am writing to you is quite unusual. As a rule, I write letters to my clients after our coaching sessions and upon request. We haven’t met yet – our session is scheduled for next week. And you haven’t asked for a letter. It’s Friday evening, and dinner and Georgian wine are waiting for me. Yet …

I am rushing to my study to write this letter – I simply can’t resist the temptation:) This is my business that exists. And I enjoy the fact that a short email from you with a specific question inspired me to share with you these ideas. I hope that as you read this letter, you will take some of them for your future. This will be pure happiness!

You wrote that your current business «seems to go flat-out».

I visited your website and the following words caught my attention immediately: «I worked within a large company for 11 years». Aha, that means you have leadership skills, management talent, stategic thinking skills, experience of working accross regions and countries etc! I don’t know anything about your current business, but for some reason I think of 10%.

What you do now is only 10% of who you are.

I think that back then in 2006 your current business grew from your desire to create something outside the corporate structure. It was based on your longing for warmth and desire to help people. Since your job most probably involved high degree of responsibility and a lot of stress, there wasn’t much room left for creativity. And the business you have now encompassed everything you wanted to do but didn’t have time for. It is a wonderful project that has given you a lot, made you feel useful and accomplished. It was a business with a soul.

But…  why do I keep thinking about those 10% and the fact that you can do not only more, but also in a different way?

You are a different person now. You don’t feel the way you felt at the beginning any more. You are different, yet your project is the same. I lack this in you now:


In other words, your business is the business that doesn’t exist. Not yet.

It has to be created anew, it has to be felt through. Listen to yourself as you did back in 2006. Listen to yourself as you never did before, following any sparkles of interest! Don’t judge your ideas and don’t rush to monetise them immediately. Don’t bother with finding the answer to the question “Is this my true vocation?” ASAP. Avoid thoughts like: «Oh my, I thought this is it, but now I need to search for something new again! Yet I don’t have a clear picture in my mind. So I am very stressed!» Don’t limit life with deadlines. Simply choose some ideas and test them in reality. Let the river flow.

You could also give yourself some free time and stop focusing on new ideas. Take a vacation – flee from all the tasks, thoughts and doubts. You could listen to Irina Khakamada’s interview on how to make this happen (highly recommended!). Put all deadlines aside, avoid anything like “I need to define the purpose of life by Nov 31st”. Life is wiser. Maybe tomorrow you will realise that you don’t need any deadlines at all. If you feel anxious, it’s important to calm your mind and soul before beginning to listen where to go next. In order to ease the tension from the never-ending talks inside your head the following articles can be of help – “Yoga for life” and “Don’t wear stress as your badge of honour”.

It’s also important not to play mental games like “Ok, I will take a break now, but then the world has to supply me with the new idea”. It doesn’t work this way:) In fact, your next business can be just a business that gives value to other people and revenue and satisfaction – to you. No more, no less. The obsessive and misleading thought “the next idea will definitely be about my calling, my vocation” looks more like a damaging virus than a wise desire to listen to life and live.

In my LIFE STYLIST project I wasn’t chasing one specific goal after another. Sometimes I din’t know what was going to happen next month. And I am still surfing. Be it high tide or low tide, I am catching the wave. Last autumn I realised that articles and coaching sessions were not enough. Neither did they bring full satisfaction, nor did I feel 100% useful to other people. The answer to the question «What else could I do?» led me to public speaking events. Starting from December last year I talked, talked and talked. I created topics for workshops from scratch and spent weeks preparing for them. Workshops then led to one-day trainings. And I felt blessed.

Did I know back in 2014, when I decided to help people finding the job they love, that I will become a speaker and public speeches will bring me up to 50% of revenue in certain months? Did I know that I would create the now beloved LETTERS project and vlog (coming soon)? Of course no. I was surfing the waves. I would let it go if something didn’t work (I didn’t write any articles for half a year, for instance). I would also take note of the new ideas popping up on the horison (public speeches, speeches, speeches!).

I have to admit that I was very anxious last year. I thought that the project has come to an end with no success. I am wiser now and understand that these periods are bound to bring birth to something new. The power of waiting is very important here. Nowadays it’s a totally different situation – I don’t do public speeches (not yet), but I write, write, write! I write and don’t think what it will lead to. And it leads to beauty (yes, I want to mention here LETTERS  project again!).

About a month ago I followed my intuition and wrote an e-mail to my client fom Iceland after the coaching session. It turned out to be a really good text and I asked him if I could publish it as an article. He agreed saying that it could definitely help many people. This is how the first letter – «Nothern lights» – was born.

Three days later another client of mine said that she wanted me to write her a letter, too. I did. The topic was how to handle our emotions. It was the first letter I wrote for a fee. The third letter – «Good year or personal ineffectiveness» – was a bonus for Tanya after the coaching session. And I have three more letters to write this week. Letters will soon be complemented with a vlog. I feel this will be that cherry on the top which will help make letters most useful and reach out to more people. This idea wouldn’t bear any fruit if I would get anxious and think “why am I doing that?”, “do people need those letters?” (apparently, they do!), “I was not paid for my fist letter so why bother investing more efforts etc?” etc.

What would have happened if I hadn’t written that letter to Reykjavik? I would only explore 10% of who I am. But I want more. Not because of my ego, but because I know I can do a lot of good and beautiful things while here.

I feel that you want the same. I hope that we can explore at least part of the journey towards the new you together!

Thank you for your email and inspiration to write this text!

Warm regards,

Olga Maksymenko

You can now order such a letter from me. It will be written specifically for you on a topic of your interest and will not be published.

Write me at olga@lifestylist.com.ua or call +38 095 197 11 22 (Viber, What’s up).

Why should you be interested in this product? I don’t record coaching sessions, just take some notes. Our conversations are rich in ideas, images and insights. You feel like keeping them, saving the info for yourself and re-reading it. Now you have the opportunity to get even more value from our work by ordering a personalised LETTER!

In your letter you will find useful links to videos as well as inspiring and supporting articles and most importantly – my ideas and insights as to your particular situation.

You can order a letter without working with me in a coaching session. For instance, “Business that doesn’t exist” is the letter I wrote before the coaching session with Maria. And her feedback was overwhelmingly positive.

More details on this – in my article “LETTERS”.


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More articles:

Sign up for coaching sessions >>

Open Career Days >>

My 12 job interviews >>

Crisis and the power of waiting >>

Don’t wear stress as your badge of honour >>

4 questions about the job you’ll love >>

Starting a new life on Monday? Surely! >>

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