The Cobbler’s Mystery, Solved?

The Desert of Arizona
Partly Sunny 47 Degrees

So we grew up hearing that the cobbler’s kids didn’t have shoes.

Poor kids. Depending on where they were living, that could be rough! And I’m sure their dad is working hard. But really, I think it’s time we got to the bottom of what the real problem is with the cobbler.

Here’s the pattern I’ve seen in my own history. Perhaps this will be valuable for you.

I set a fee. It feels like I’m hardly working at all. Yippeee this is great! Life is good!

But something feels a little bit empty. What happened to the struggle? I was used to that. Like a warm cozy blanket.

So slowly, over time, I start doing MORE work for that same fee level. I do enough work to get my “no pain, no gain” meter back to where it’s comfortable for me. In other words, I work MORE so that I feel I’m more worthy of the money coming in. I find my way back to “Struggle Road” where I know the terrain.

No one knows this craziness is going on inside my head. No one cares either. But it makes me feel better.

As you can see, even though the fee number might be growing, so does the work involved. So basically, we’re working hard and going nowhere. What a life!

And that brings me to my hypothesis:

The cobbler’s kids didn’t have shoes because the cobbler was too addicted to the struggle (which was comfortable) to increase his prices enough to buy himself the time required to upgrade the condition of what was most important to him.

Kind of nuts when you actually say that out loud.

The cobbler syndrome is alive and well just about everywhere you look:

The financial planner whose finances are in disarray.

The marketing consultant who has terrible marketing materials.

The branding expert who has no brand!

It’s happening everywhere…

What’s the solution?

Raise your fees. Figure out how to find clients who will pay those fees. Buy yourself some time to fix your situation, then grow…

The longer term solution is to develop the habit of being ok with the signs of success. In particular, I’m talking about the feeling you get when you see you are creating 10x results with very little effort.

That’s not a problem, that’s the point.