Are you feeling overwhelmed by your business and want to give yourself more guilt-free self-care? If yes, you need to connect with Helen Calvert, The No Bullsh*t Coach, who helps business owners achieve a more balanced lifestyle by “squeezing every last drop of enjoyment from your business and your life”.
In this interview, Helen shares her story of how she went from being a VA to a life coach, how she published her first book, and how she helps her clients overcome their challenges.
Read on for some golden nuggets about how to run a successful and fulfilling business.
What is your name and what do you do?
I am Helen Calvert, The No Bullsh*t Coach, and I help business owners to step away from the overwhelm and start living the life they want for themselves. Guilt-free.
How long have you been running your business/freelancing and why did you start?
Being employed was not going to happen.
In October 2018 I was nearly divorced, I was deep in heartbreak, my mental health was a mess, and there was no way I could face going back to employment after 8 years out of the workplace. I needed an income but I needed my freedom.
So I set up HC Business Support and started out as a VA. A friend helped me to find my very first client, and more clients followed suit. So much so that at the end of 2019 I took on two women as my first associates, and rebranded to Clear Day.
Working closely with business owners and sole traders, I found that as well as tackling their admin, I was also providing a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on and a sounding board for advice. I was working mainly with women, and I had already spent a good deal of time working voluntarily with women for whom the parenting journey was a struggle. I had received some coaching myself and it just all came together: I knew I wanted to coach.
At the beginning of 2020 I did my training with MOE Foundation. Whilst we were all stuck in lockdown, I started to offer online coaching sessions alongside the VA work and social media support I was already providing, and my coaching practice grew from there. In 2021 the podcast was born, and in 2022 my first book was published. I may work with business owners but I’m not a business coach. I’m a life coach. Because let’s face it, it’s impossible to separate out work from the rest of your life, and I like to work with you on it all.
Everything I have learned, everything that has helped, everything that has hindered, I pour all of this knowledge into the work that I do with my clients. No bullsh*t, no nonsense, just lots of self-kindness and honesty and an encouragement of joy.
Finding clients is one of the biggest concerns for people starting out working for themselves. Where did you find your very first client or customer? Where do you mostly find them now?
It’s always been about the power of the network for me – meeting new people, building relationships, getting introduced to people they know and so on. You can find a blog post on my website all about finding clients.
Who would you love to have as a dream client and why?
Any self-employed woman who has the freedom of being her own boss, but who has forgotten her passion, forgotten adventure, cannot remember what brings her joy. I will help her to use her freedom, own her story and rediscover who she is.
What app or social media platform could you not run your business without, and why?
Oh there are too many to list. I love Instagram and LinkedIn, I love my Facebook communities (I run two groups), I love my project management system, my accounting software… As a business support agency we know so many systems that can help people and we use a lot of them ourselves.
Is working for yourself what you expected? How do you manage a healthy work-life balance?
It is, it is all about freedom and I love it. I talk about work-life balance a lot with my clients and on my podcast. For me there is no difference between work and life, the difference is between desires and obligations. Our days are filled with obligations, work commitments, family obligations, social tasks, life admin…the important thing is to ensure that we are also meeting our needs and doing the things we desire, the things we want to do. I genuinely do practice what I preach, I am excessively kind to myself.
What has been your favourite project to date?
Every single client that I have helped to find more joy in their lives. It never gets old. When they have those lightbulb moments, when they gain more understanding, more awareness, when they realise they have the freedom to make choices – it brings me joy to see them find the joy.
What is your biggest win of the last 12 months?
Publishing my book. To hold in my hands something I have written, to see people reading it, to get the feedback on how helpful it has been for people…definitely my biggest win.
You can find my book here.
What is it about running your business/being a freelancer that you most enjoy?
I absolutely love only being answerable to myself, being able to live my life the way I want to, being able to work from anywhere. That freedom is everything to me. Least enjoy? I’m not a fan of minute financial analysis, but fortunately I have a wonderful accountant for that.
If you were given a free £1000 to spend on your business, what would you spend it on?
Good question! I have already invested in my podcast, my book, a copywriter and a graphic designer. To be honest I would probably put it aside for the dreadful but inevitable day when my laptop dies and I need a new one!
What is your ONE top tip or piece of advice you would offer to other freelancers/small business owners?
Be excessively kind to yourself. Self-care is the route of productivity, success and happiness. If you have no idea how to do that, get in touch with me.
And finally, is there anything you’d like to shout about right now?
My podcast, The No Bullsh*t Guide To A Happier Life. If you enjoy it, you will enjoy my book, and you will also get a lot out of being a client. Start with the podcast, it is aimed at everyone who wants to squeeze every last drop of enjoyment out of life.
You can connect with Helen on LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook and through her website.
We recommend: Reading Helen’s guest blog on How to Be More Productive.