Ep #228: 5 Hard Truths About Becoming a Million-Dollar Coach

This week, I’m excited to bring you some lessons I’ve learned on my journey of growing and scaling my business. If you’re a coach who wants to build a million-dollar business and wants to be in business for the long term, this is a must-listen episode.

As a coach who’s been growing and scaling my business for over five years, my goal is to provide you with lessons from my vantage point that will help you shortcut your path to success. There’s going to be some tough love offered here as I invite you to take a look at where you might be falling short on your journey to becoming a million-dollar coach, but it will tremendously benefit you.

Listen in today to hear five game-changing lessons that will up-level your business to new heights and help you become the million-dollar coach you aspire to be. 


If you’re ready to create the next-level million-dollar version of yourself and become an example of what is possible, I invite you to join my High-Level Mastermind where we will scale your business to multi six and seven figures and beyond. And if you’re working to grow your business to your first $100K and beyond, I encourage you to join my business accelerator, The Mastermind. So click here to fill out your application and schedule a call!

What You’ll Learn:

  • Why you must know the ‘how’ when it comes to growing your business.
  • What happens when you understand how you’re going to create the success you want.
  • The reason mentorship and coaching are vital as a business owner.
  • Why you aren’t entitled to a successful business.
  • How to be the leader your business needs you to be.
  • What it means to be disciplined in your thinking.


Listen to the Full Episode:



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Download a Transcript for The Life Coach Business Podcast

You are listening to The Million Dollar Coach Podcast with Amanda Karlstad episode number 228.

Welcome to The Million Dollar Coach Business Podcast, a show for coaches who are ready to up-level their business and take their impact, leadership, and results to a million dollar level and beyond. If you’re ready to break through your limitations and start taking powerful action and become the seven figure version of you that your business needs in order to grow, scale, and thrive, this show is for you.

I’m your host, Amanda Karlstad, Master Coach, high level business mentor and advisor, master intuitive and business growth and scaling expert. Let’s get down to business.

Hello and welcome everyone. So glad to have you here today. I’m excited to talk with all of you. I decided that today I wanted to bring you some lessons that I have learned on my journey of growing and scaling my business. Lessons that quite frankly, I think are really important if you’re a coach who wants to build a million dollar business and wants to be in your business for the long game. 

So today, I want to talk to you all about some of the lessons that I have learned, some difficult lessons that I’ve learned in my five plus years of growing my business, and also some general lessons that are extremely powerful. So I want to tee this up by saying that there might be a little tough love here in this episode. 

My intention is that it really helps you to shortcut and to really learn some of these lessons and to also take a look at where you might be falling with some of the things that we’re about to talk about. 

All right, so the first lesson that I think is really important for all of you is the fact that the how is important. Here’s what I mean. There is a lot of rhetoric in the coaching industry, in our online space, about not needing to know the how. While I do think that this message, for the most part, is well intentioned, what I have also experienced and what I have observed after coaching hundreds of coaches in my programs and mentoring hundreds of coaches is that knowing the how actually is important. Here’s why. 

When you don’t know the how, when you don’t have an actual strategy on how you’re going to grow or how you’re going to take your business to the next level, what ends up happening is that you will do what I call throwing spaghetti at the wall. You’ll cross your fingers and hope that something sticks. 

For most coaches, and maybe even for you listening, this might look like creating, for example, all sorts of content and posting it to your Instagram, to all of your social media channels. Basically the whole time have your fingers crossed that a client is going to see your post and enroll in your program. 

Maybe you do even have some strategy around your content. That’s not to say that I don’t see there aren’t certain strategies around content. But for the most part, and for that strategy to really work, there has to be a how involved with that. So what typically happens is that you’re spending days, you’re spending weeks, you’re spending months, in some cases, even years. I’ve literally seen coaches spend years trying to grow their audience through all sorts of content hoping that something will stick. 

What this does for you, as the business owner is a number of things. Number one, it keeps you small. It keeps you in a place where you feel like you’re spinning your wheels. Where you’re spending the majority of your time essentially trying to hack an ever changing algorithm. Through that process, your energy is very diluted. Your focus, your time, all of that becomes very diluted. 

At the end of the day, you’re not really creating the assets that will actually grow your business to a six, multiple six, even seven figure mark. So this is a huge trap that I see a lot of coaches fall into where they’re trying to generate sales. They’re trying to generate business or revenue from a strategy that from the get-go is actually faulty. That doesn’t even have the capacity to grow their business to the level that they want. 

So this is number one. Knowing that how and having a real business strategy having a strong strategy is vital to your success. It’s required. It’s actually required more when you’re earlier on in the journey and more so even when you’re established, when you do have a proven offer, when you’ve sold that offer where you’ve reached that six figure mark or more. The how is important, and it will also change depending on where you’re at in the business. 

So, for example, what might make the most sense when you’re starting out in your business versus when you’re farther along, when you’re already at that six, multiple six figure mark, or beyond, the how will be different. So I want to encourage all of you right now to take a look at your how. Are you clear on what that is? Are you clear on how exactly you’re going to double, triple, or quadruple or more your business this year?

I will say if that right now if you cannot answer that with certainty that you need a how. Also when you know the how what happens from an emotional perspective, from a mindset perspective, is that rather than spinning your wheels and spending your time around how you’re going to do it, your brain will actually go out, and it will start to do the work of executing and creating from the how, which are two very different things. 

So while yes, the how will change based on where you’re at in your business and even through the process of implementing the how for any business, it’s going to evolve. It’s going to change along the way. But knowing where you’re going and how you’re actually going to create the level of success that you want is vital. 

All right, the next lesson I want to impart on you is that mindset does not change in isolation. I’m going to say this again because this is so important. Mindset does not change in isolation. 

Here’s the thing. I’ve experienced this myself where you may be doing all sorts of inner work, where you might even have a practice where you’re looking regularly at your mindset, where you are even experiencing shifts through the work that you’re doing. 

What I’ve also experienced and I’ve observed with clients regularly in my programs is that unless you are in a container or in an environment where even that mindset, the mindset where you’ve done your own work. Unless that is being challenged, unless you have that different perspective, unless you’re being challenged by somebody who is invested in your growth, who cares about the results that you’re creating, who can see the things that you can’t see because we all have blind spots, it’s very difficult to make the real and lasting change in your mindset. 

This is why I believe that mentorship and coaching is vital as a business owner. Because let’s be honest, we can only see what we can see. For instance, I can see for my clients can be the one thing that unlocks that next level. That can be the one thing that unlocks everything. 

I’ve had some recent examples of this in some of my recent coaching sessions where by bringing certain things to the surface, and I’m thinking about one client, in particular. By just bringing a few key things to the surface that were already there, that were already happening in the business that for some different reasons this client wasn’t able to see at the time. 

But by being able to bring this to the surface and to be able to show this client these key things that I could clearly see from my vantage point, it completely changed the way that she thought about her business. It completely changed the game on how she felt about her business. It immediately changed her perspective on what was possible. The cool thing is that we didn’t even change anything in the business. It was about seeing more clearly what was already there. 

This is why, again, mindset doesn’t change in isolation. In fact, had we not had that conversation, had she not seen these things in her business, it’s very likely that she would have gone down a path where she was thinking unhelpful thoughts about certain aspects of the business and about herself and about what was possible for her. 

But the truth is that through coaching and having awareness to this is what shifted, allowed her to shift that in an instant. So this is why if you’re a business owner and you’re not in a container where you’re being coached, where you’re being challenged in your business, it has been my experience that it will be very difficult to create the level of breakthroughs that you truly want unless your current level of thinking is being challenged and ultimately is growing as a result of this perspective change.

All right, that one is really important. Okay. The next lesson that I feel compelled to bring to you is that I believe it’s very important to be a coach and to be growing your business from place where you’re doing it because you believe in coaching. Because you deeply know in value coaching. 

It’s not just because you see the opportunity of coaching. I want to be clear. This is a very important distinction. Something that I have said since day one when I decided to launch my business was because I believe in coaching so much, because I believe that coaching is some of the most important work that I believe we can do as humans. 

This comes from a place of my own personal transformation. When I really consider and look back at my entire career, even before I officially certified as a coach. When I look at who I have been in my life and who I have been in my career, my entire career, I have always been somebody who has been extremely interested, who has practiced, who has studied personal development. 

What I was thinking about when I was creating my outline for this podcast, what I was really thinking about even back on my early career, even in my early 20s. So way back even when I was fresh out of college, even in college. When I look back at the books that I was reading at the time, when I look back to what I was focused on, I was reading books like As A Man Thinketh. I was reading books like The Four Agreements.

I was reading and digesting all sorts of books and information from people like John Maxwell and Dale Carnegie and Malcolm Gladwell and Simon Sinek. I was learning from greats like Earl Nightingale. So when I decided to become a coach, for me, it felt so natural and so aligned. 

Because truthfully, I’ve been coaching my entire career. I have been coaching high performing teams. I’ve been leading high performance teams, immersing myself, working on myself for almost two decades, even before I decided to become certified as a coach. 

So while yes, before I made that decision, I did see what was possible for me, and I’m so grateful to people like one of my mentors, Brooke Castillo, who showed me what was possible. At the same time, it also came from a place, and I made the decision from the place of because the work matters. Because coaching matters, because coaching, I believe, changes lives. I have been a product of that. I have experienced that my entire career. 

So I share this because I think with the growth that we’ve experienced in this industry and because of the opportunity that does exist, and at the same time, I want to be clear. I also believe that part of my mission is to show you and to be an example of what is possible through my business, through my client’s businesses, and really show what is possible through that. 

At the same time, I also believe that that desire has to be coming from the right place. That it must be coming from a place of because coaching matters. When I look back at all of the clients that I’ve worked with throughout the years and that have been the most successful in my containers, by far and large, it’s because they are doing the work from a deeply convicted place that coaching matters. It’s not just a business opportunity. It’s just not a way to make money online. 

I also think it’s becoming more and more important, and it’s going to continue to be important moving forward. So I want to encourage you to just be in the game because you believe in coaching and because you believe in the power of coaching. Not just as a way to make money online, but to actually do the work in the world that you want to do. 

All right. This next one is a big one. You are not entitled to a successful business you have to put in the work. All right, my friends, this one is big. When I consider my experience, when I look at my clients who are generating six, multiple six, seven figures and beyond in revenue, one of the things that I can say without a doubt is that there is no entitlement happening. 

Meaning just because you’re a coach, just because you are certified as a coach, does not mean that automatically you will have a successful business. Rather, the most successful coaches that I have mentored, that I have coached, are the ones that take full responsibility, that understand that creating success and creating a real business, a business that generates six, multiple six, seven figures, and beyond in revenue, that that takes effort. 

That that does not happen overnight. That it does require putting in work. That it will continue to require work. That different stages of the business will require different things, and that it is going to be journey. Also that it must be treated and approached like a real business for it to produce those levels of results. 

So this is so important because, again, with the growth of the coaching industry, with the opportunity that does exist, and the more growth that we have seen. At the same time, there is a sense that I have seen in some cases where there’s a sense of entitlement that comes into play, whether that might look like feeling like you shouldn’t have to do certain things in business. Or when you perhaps implement certain things in the business, and it doesn’t exactly go as planned. 

It’s very easy to fall into a place of entitled where there’s a line of thinking that I’m doing all of the things, and I’ve done everything to a tee, and it’s still not working to the level that I think it should be. The truth is that the level of work that has been done has probably not been effective enough. That the degree of effectiveness that needs to be done, that the business needs you to do, is higher than what has been done. 

So I just think it’s so important to be able to be honest about that. To look at that, and to really understand that part of your role as the leader of your business is to be able to effectively evaluate and to determine based on data and not based on emotion whether or not you’re hitting the mark. Whether or not your messaging, for example, is falling flat, or whether or not your offer or how you’re communicating your offer, how you’re missing the mark in your sales conversations. How that is contributing to the results or lack thereof that you might have. 

So this one is really big. So it’s about being able to approach your business from a clean place where there isn’t an underlying sense of entitlement happy. But instead, it’s radical responsibility. It’s radical clarity on what is actually contributing to the results that you have. Being humble enough and coachable enough to recognize that you probably have some areas for growth, and you’re probably not implementing things as effectively as you think you might be. That you might be missing the mark in some areas. This is big.

All right, I told you, there was going to be some tough love here. This next one, I’m extremely passionate about this one. This one is all about being the leader your business needs you to be. I want to be clear on this. I’m not talking about being a good coach when I say this. That is given in my world. For my clients, for all of you listening, you know you’re great coaches. You have the tools, you have the skills, you have the training, whatever that might look like to you. You also know that the work you do helps to change lives. 

What I’m talking about here is from a real business perspective. Are you really being the leader that your business is needing you to? Meaning are you actively doing the things that are actually going to move the needle in your business? Or are you focused in places that aren’t moving the needle? 

Are you working, perhaps, from an unfocused or maybe a distracted place? Are you focusing on things, again, that isn’t really going to move the dial in the way that you want it to? Are you not showing up fully? Are you not being consistent? Where are you not telling yourself the truth?

One of the exercises that I found to be very useful and helpful in my own journey is to think back when I was on the executive team in my former career. I think back to the time when I had weekly executive meetings where this would look like all of the executive team, and all of us would literally sit around the table in the conference room. We would report as an executive team, our numbers. We would report our performance for the week. We would report for each of our respective departments each and every week, where we were falling in terms of performance. 

We would record that to not only the president, but we would report that to the rest of our executive team. When I consider that time, and I think that to being in those meetings, the level of accountability I felt in that each and every day, not only to my executive team, but to the organization, to my own team and to the shareholders. I have to tell you all, that was very intense. 

While it was a very intense position that I was in, while there was a lot of revenue and responsibility and marketing that I was responsible for, it also allowed me to grow and cultivate and become a leader. I became through that journey a leader who was responsible for leading multimillion dollar sales and marketing initiatives each every month. We’re not even talking every year. We’re talking each and every month.

A leader who is responsible for almost 50 million in annual revenue. A leader who is responsible for leading and driving eight figures of growth for the organization each and every year. 

I will tell you, when you have this level of responsibility, it doesn’t leave much room for lack of leadership. In fact, I have to say there was a reason why I frequently was called in, to help out and help fix, quote unquote, struggling teams, to help grow and cultivate the leadership within the organization. 

It first started because I was willing to lead. I was willing to continue to grow as a leader. All of that happened, because I first learned how to lead myself. I first made the decision to lead myself. So today, when I look at my business and the work that I do, a big part of my work with clients is helping them to cultivate and grow that leadership within themselves so they can lead their businesses. Because the truth is your business will only grow to the level that you grow as leader. This is a very important lesson. 

All right. Lastly, to become a million dollar coach, you must become disciplined in your thinking. When I look back, one of my strengths that I can see that has really helped me create the results that I have and that I’ve experienced is because I have been very attuned to and am continually working on how do I become more disciplined in my own thinking?

So something that I am continually looking at for myself is where there might be a gap, or where there might be a belief or something that I might be even accepting as a truth that might be limiting me. So even today, as I look at myself, I’m always looking for what might be limiting me right now in my next level. It’s something that I’m continually looking at with my clients is where can I help them to become more disciplined in what they might be accepting as true? Where can I help them and support them in the areas that might not be serving?

So, for me, this has been huge. This has also meant being highly selective to what I choose to listen to, to what inputs I choose to have in my own brain. I have a very high degree of discernment towards where I spend my time, where I spend my energy. So I would encourage you to look at this for yourself and to look at where you might be able to become more disciplined in your thinking, in your focus, in where you’re spending your time and your energy because it matters. 

All right, my friends. Take some time. Consider these lessons for yourself. Ask yourself where you’re falling in terms of these lessons and where you might be able to get even just 1% better today. I’d love to know what you’ve taken from this episode and what you’re implementing. All right, everybody have an amazing week. I’ll talk to you all again very soon. Take care. Bye, bye. 

Thank you for listening to this episode of The Million Dollar Coach Business Podcast. If you’re ready to step into the million dollar version of yourself and scale your business to six, multi-six, or seven figures and beyond, go to amandakarlstadtcoaching.com.


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