My Love Hate Relationship with Growth and Expansion

Published on September 19, 2012


We have been going through some major growing pains this year and it is every bit as painful as it is exciting.

Helping other people grow and expand is my job and yet, I still struggle with it myself sometimes. What I am finding is that I love the creative and visionary side of expansion and I absolutely despise the tactical and operational side of it. I bask in the beginning phase and the finished product and still the in-between parts feel like walking in quick sand.

Chris on the other hand likes the “figuring it all out” part. Thank God, right? I would never get anywhere if he weren’t taking care of the middle.

As I have been reflecting on this whole process (yes, it’s a process) of growth and expansion, I have made a few notes about how to effectively cope with the ebb and flow cycle, the love and hate of it, and the ever changing daily flood of emotion that goes along with it.

1. Identify your zone of genius. Get into it and stay in it as often as possible.


Danielle LaPorte in the Firestarter Sessions talks about being in your zone of genius.

“Creative Genius comes from your true strengths. Not your fake-it-til-you-make-it strengths, but rather, the energizing goodness that comes most naturally to you.”

When I am in my zone of genius (collaborating, creating, visioning, masterminding, inspiring, leading, teaching, and empowering) I am at my best. I am energized. When I am doing things that aren’t in my zone of genius (web site design, twittering, formatting, detail work) I feel drained and exhausted.

Of course during times of early growth and expansion we can’t always just do the things that energize us, but it is critical to recognize what does and go there when you need a boost.

2. Leverage as much as possible. Ask for help.


Believe me, if it weren’t for Chris and I working together, we could not get nearly as much done as we currently do. But even then, there are things that just aren’t in our skill set. We hire those out.

Yes, it costs money to hire people. Where there is a will there is a way. Barter, hire a VA overseas (or better yet a talented up-and-coming American VA), enlist a talented friend, get an intern. Do what you need to do to insure you are getting the end result you want. Half-ass just doesn’t cut it anymore. You are a professional.

3. Love on yourself. When it is flowing let it flow and when it’s not, take a nap.


This is the hardest one for me. My guess it’s hard for you too. What I have learned though is that there is more power in a nap than there is in trying to force something that just isn’t coming.

To paraphrase something else I learned from the FireStarter Sessions book. One of the signs of suckage is the “bleak absence of synchronicity.” If it ain’t comin’ together, it just ain’t comin’ together.

When things aren’t happening easily, I know it’s time to shift my energy. Some of the things that work best for me are walking my dog, going for a nature walk, meditating, taking a nap, calling a friend, watching a funny show or video, and playing with my grand daughter (the most beautiful baby EVER).

The key - NO GUILT allowed. Consider the act of “shifting your energy” as a dollar productive activity (even if it’s a nap) and just do it. It’s important and it’s what will move you forward.


As Chris and I move forward with expansion of both our companies, and the Seniors Real Estate Institute, I fully expect to bump into some challenges. I also know that it won’t be perfect. Damn I hate that. I so love perfection.

The truth - Nothing ever gets done perfectly.

Nothing. Perfection is a myth. OK...yes, I am still convincing myself of this. I know it’s true, but I continue to have the argument with my inner critic and thankfully, the rational and wise woman in me usually wins.

I hope this is helpful as you move forward, grow, and expand. You deserve the best and if you ever need someone to help you quiet your inner critic, I am happy to do it. It’s one of the things I love the most about my job (and it falls in my zone of genius).

By the way? What is YOUR zone of genius? I would love to know!




Nikki Buckelew is the Co-Founder and President of Coaching and Training, a coaching and training company specializing in real estate, leadership, and life coaching for Realtors, brokers, and leaders with SoulFire. Buckelew is also the Founder and CEO of the Seniors Real Estate Institute, a coaching and training company specializing in senior real estate and housing and administrator for the Certified Senior Housing Professional® (CSHP) designation.

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