Nov. 11, 2022

#64 - Selling When Life Interferes

If you’re like many founders or creators, you’re wearing multiple hats or have more than one project going. Plus, you (should). have a personal life.

And there are times when you’ll run into a challenge or life event that requires your full attention.

In this quick episode, Brendan and Bob talk about prioritizing, managing and giving yourself permission to put things on hold. Because you can’t be effective if you’ve got obstacles and issues that need your attention… and your mental health.

And to learn more about the Accelerate Your Sales Success sprint course, click here -

If you’re like many founders or creators, you’re wearing multiple hats or have more than one project going. Plus, you (should). have a personal life. 

And there are times when you’ll run into a challenge or life event that requires your full attention. 

In this quick episode, Brendan and Bob talk about prioritizing, managing and giving yourself permission to put things on hold. Because you can’t be effective if you’ve got obstacles and issues that need your attention… and your mental health.

And to learn more about the Accelerate Your Sales Success sprint course, click here -


If you'd like to learn more about what we do, then please visit:


Hey, Bob. So guess what? 

It's another episode of Let's Chat Sales. 

No way. 

Let's Chat Sales! 

Yes, exactly it is. 

And today, we're talking about how life can get in the way, right? 


This, you know, you've got this sales effort, you'll hear me talk about all the time about 

how important it is to have a regular routine that you should be working during your sales process every day 

and should have a certain routine and have everything in place. 

But sometimes things get in the way. 


Yeah, I was gonna say, if I can make a confession

I've got a sales process I've just put together in the last six, seven days, 

and it works really well on the days that I am committed to doing it.

But today I had some things that came up, some personal things, and I'm completely off track with it. 

So it seemed like it might be a good topic for us to just talk through,

because part of what I do is I beat myself up about it. 

I blame myself. 

I get more frustrated.

And what I've seen in the past is that causes me not to wanna follow that the next day and the day after.

It's like I abandon it. 


The first day goes south. 


Does that make sense? 



This whole thing about having a habit, about having a process and doing something every day 

and just because it keeps the momentum going and so forth, this is that Seinfeld method 

which is, you know, his deal was to write a joke every day.

Every day writes a joke, he's got a calendar, and he crosses off that day in the calendar when he is written that joke.

And so, the key is to try and keep the streak alive. 

But, there are times when you can't.

Right. Stuff get in the way. 

I'm in the process a bit of the transition myself and so it is a bit of a battle to try and keep the momentum going. 

So what are some of the things you do Brendan to keep that momentum going?

Cause you do a lot more sales than me.

So what are the tricks and tips that you would offer us? 

I have a few things that come to mind, but two things in particular.

One is to try and block out a certain amount of time and what I do in my calendar is, my mornings are the best time for sales.

It's when I'm most creative, it's when I've got my most energy. 

And so I tend to block out the morning to do work and then I try and block out 30, 45 minutes for dedicated sales sorts of activities every day. 


And that doesn't sound like a lot, but the idea is it's not a huge insurmountable amount of time.

And once I get into the mode, once I get started, it's easy for it to creep into the following next half hour or 45 minutes or whatever. 

And so pretty soon I've dedicated a fair amount of time, 

but I start with a small chunk at the beginning of the day. 

So this is like the runner who they say, if you don't wanna run, just put your shoes on 

and your shorts and just go out and say you're gonna run for five minutes.


And before you know it, you've run an hour. 



And that, and that's the second.

And that's the kind of related piece. Start with a small chunk. 

Start with a very small increment and use that as the catalyst, as the impetus to get started. 

So you block out time in your calendar so you can't have something else going on, number one.

And number two, start with some meaningful chunk and then let that creep in.

Take a break. And then try another chunk, right? 


Those things really help. 

And so even if you're just talking to one or two customers every day, 
or you're sending out three or four emails just to keep the momentum going, that's a good way.

Ideally you wanna do more, but you know, if you've got stuff going on, 
if you've got conflicts and you've got your work wrestling with life. 

This is a way to kind of keep some amount of momentum going and keep your hand in. 


Could I add one thing that's worked for me various times in my career and that is to 

Yeah. Fire away 

Call a friend or a good customer to start my day before I start making sales calls, 
talking to someone who really likes what I do and is very positive about me

and just gets me in that place where it's like, okay, I'm much more impenetrable. 

Then I would be if I just started making sales calls.

So really building that armor, if you will. 

Yeah, that's good. 

It's another way to get the momentum going. The converse of that is, I think an old Mark Twain thing is like 

You are namedropping left and right today. 

I know. 

So I think it's Mark Twain says, eat, eat the frog. Which is you.

Is that right? 

Yes, you are correct. 

So you start by tackling the most miserable, hardest part of the project, first. 

So if you've got unruly customer, if you can get them out of the way, 

if you got a tough sales call or a tough issue to work through and try and tackle that first.

If you can tackle that again, take 10 minutes.

Take a little chunk of it, but tackle that first. 

Then you get that outta the way, and that sort of makes the rest of the day go kind of easily. 

I use that with my exercise. 

I tried to exercise at five or five 30 in the morning. 

That way it's not hanging over my head all day. 


And I can feel success.


Right out like, yeah, I've already got the hardest part of my day done. 

Now I can do anything. 


A lot of this is we're talking about routine and having structure and you know, I had kids, they're now adults now.

But one of the things about kids, like everyone was we like to have a certain amount of structure, 

and if you have a routine that you're in, and this is going back to blocking your time

That sort of kind of it's almost like putting your life on autopilot, putting your day on autopilot a little bit.

So if you have a bit of a routine and you know that from eight o'clock in the morning to 10 

you're gonna be doing these sorts of things, you've got this amount of time blocked out, 

Those sorts of routines, that sort of structure. It just, it makes it easy, you know, makes it easier. 

And so you sort of have a bit of a flywheel effect.

I find that helpful. 

Can I push back on that a little? 

Sure. Yeah. 

So many, many of the founders and owners I've talked to like the fact that they don't have to work within a structure. 

That's one of the appeals of what they're doing. 

They've worked in a full time job and they had to be there at eight o'clock and they had to do all

those things.

Now they have the opportunity to build it however they want, and I hear a lot of just

I don't want structure. 

Structure is a negative. What'd you say to that? 



I don't, I mean, every to each is home, I think. 

But like my coaching sessions, I have a pretty rigorous kind of structure that I've put into place that

we're gonna talk.

We're gonna talk about pipeline once a week, and we're gonna go through the pipeline 

and we're gonna go through the opportunities. 

We're gonna look for patterns, we're gonna discuss obstacles, and these are sort of standard things that they can come to expect every week in that status call. 

And then what I expect them to do is block out time every day for sales.

These are startup companies. 

They've got other things going on, product development, marketing, you know, finance, raising money, that sort of thing. 

But, I expect them to spend some amount of time every day.

If you're an early stage startup, you know you're working so, you know, it's probably best.

It's funny that works. 

Amount of structure. 




I need that 

Yeah, it's, it's nice that you have the ability to kind of move things around and Yeah. 

And if you wanna take the day off, you know, if you're self-employed, you can do that. 

There's nothing wrong with that.

And that kind of gets to my next point, which give yourself permission to let life kind of interfere

on your business, right? 

I mean, working for the sake of work in and of itself isn't the greatest thing in the world. 

So it does make sense and you should give yourself permission to go and live life.

And if you got stuff coming in from the outside that you've gotta tackle 

and you've gotta put something on you know, on hold for a second, do your priorities. 

Figure out what you can put aside and then, you know, tackle those life things you gotta get out of the way. 

And when you have to get 'em out of the way, 

It's a lot of time shifting really and saying, okay, on Thursday I'm going to the doctor for the morning, so I might work Saturday morning or Sunday afternoon. 

I keep a little clock of how many hours I've worked, and if I'm doing personal stuff for four or five

hours, I make sure that I've rebuilt.

I build that time in in an evening or on the weekends, so at the end of the week, I've still accomplished the same mass.

Right, Right.

And we've talked about this in past podcast episodes, about being able to say no and 

having that ability to say no and that I find that's really hard for me to do. 

If someone asked me something there, new project comes long, I will say yes.

And so it 

Really, Brendan? 

But it, yeah

I've never experienced

It really helps. 

It really helps to be able to have someone to be able to say no, or have someone that you can bounce ideas off of who can tell you, 

Hey, you know, maybe this is something you wanna put off until later.


I don't always listen, but it's good to have that feedback.

Well, I think that's the hard part because especially when you're starting a business. 

You don't wanna say no to that customer who says, Hey, can you do this thing for me? 

Cuz you're going, I can make money, I can do this. 

This would be a really good customer to have, except it's gonna take you in a completely different direction.

And I think that's tug of war.

But as I think of the businesses that are most successful, they really stay in their lane. 

They don't deviate.


And I've got a client who's really good at just, he'll say, Hey, this person wants me to do this. 

What do you think? 

And I'll say doesn't really feel like your core mission.

And he'll be like, Yeah, that's what I was thinking. I'm gonna tell No. 

And he just


It's hard to do in the beginning though. 

Yeah, it does definitely take effort. 

And if you're like me, if you wanna take on stuff, Oh, new project, Oh, that sounds really sexy.

Oh, that's really interesting. 

I wanna do it. 

But then, you know, something has to give. 

And so it's good to be able to bounce those ideas off on other people. 

It's good to be able to step back and maybe take a little quiet time and go 

What are the things that really matter? What are the priorities?

And then make that tough decision. 

And if there's some life event as we talked about that gets in the way.

And you gotta tackle that, well, then you gotta tackle it and then give yourself permission. 

So those are the things I would say is try and block out time, even small amounts, you know, so you get that routine going.

Give yourself permission to take time off, have resources, friends around that you can bounce ideas

off of and get a outside, perspective. 

Someone who can kind of point out what may be a blind spot for you. 

Try to be able to say no.

I think those are the things I would say that I would, kind of focus on.

I would give the one caveat and that's Brendan, 

I've seen a couple of people in the past who have always found excuses when it's time to do sales

calls, that there's always something that rises. 

Oh, I've gotta go pay bills. 

No, I've gotta do this. 

So if you start seeing that pattern, that's not what we're talking about here.

That's not what we're talking about at all.

That that's avoidance. 

And we're not saying avoid it. 

We're saying put it in perspective given what else might be going on. 


That, you know, brings up the course that, that just real quickly and the sales course that I just recently launched, the point of which is to kind of create that momentum.

So a big part of it is how do you get in the habit of talking about sales and doing sales every day, executing every day, every day, every day. 

And it just, you know, 20, 30 minutes a day can make a huge difference because if you're a founder,

if you're a creator, if you're in a startup, having that momentum, getting that momentum is critically important.

And this kind of gets to that, there are moments in life when you know you gotta take a break

You don't wanna burn out, you gotta gotta focus on your life.

By all means do that. 

But at the same time, when it's time to get back to the work, get back in that habit. 

So I think in addition to momentum, you also get the habit and it becomes a habit. 

If every morning from eight to nine you're doing this body and your mind start to get attuned to it. 

And I find that can really make a difference too, with things.




It's just, it's getting into that routine. 


Well, Brendan, this has been really helpful. 

Helpful to me. 


Well, thanks Bob. 

I think we should do it again sometime, don't you? 

All right. 

Let's Chat Sales again. 

All right. 

See you, Bob. 

Until next time.

That was another episode of Let's Chat Sales a quick one, of course.

And I hope it was helpful.

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