Kim Avery Coaching

5 Sneaky Ways to “Play Small” & NOT grow a business

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Sorry to just blurt this out, but I need to come clean right from the start. I love to play small. Hide in the back. Commit to “safe” activities so that they’ll have a 99.999% chance of success.

I think I’m the only person in the world who read The Prayer of Jabez book and got hives. 

“Expand my territory, Lord??” Yikes! Do you know how much work, pressure, and responsibility that would be? Thanks, but, no thanks. 

This big chicken was tempted to pray, “Lord, keep my territory small so that I don’t have to do anything too stressful or too hard.”

Playing big, trusting God, building a business that radically serves others is:

    ✔️ scary,
    ✔️complicated, and
    ✔️requires leaving my comfort zone every. single. day.

Are you tempted to hold back, too? If so, here’s my tongue-in-cheek guide to playing small with gusto and glee. 

[Warning: Read with your sense of humor fully engaged 🤣]

How to Play Small and NOT Grow a Business that Succeeds

  1. Learn just “a bit” more
    Take another class, buy a new course, learn just a few more things before you step out and do an uncomfortable thing.


    Ah, this is procrastination’s most perfect disguise.

    It gives us the illusion of moving forward with none of the risks.

  2. Do it “Right”
    We care about excellence. We want to serve well. We’re worried that we might mess this up and get it wrong. Good for us!Endless tweaking, improving, and insisting on “getting it right” is the ideal way to feel good about ourselves and without ever actually serving.


    Sure, some people start messy and trust God, but can you even imagine what their Aunt’s second cousin thinks of them?

  3. Please Everyone
    It’s important to care about others. After all, we should love them as we love ourselves.So, a great way to play small and make sure your business rocket ship never leaves the ground is to make sure that everyone is happy with every decision you make, all the time.


    This is always a popular choice (impossible, but popular 😀.)

  4. Do What You’re Good At
    It’s important to look competent and feel confident. Thus, ignore the fact that with anything worth doing there’s a learning curve involved.Avoid the discomfort of being a beginner and growing along the way. Engage in activities that you’ve already mastered.


    This strategy is guaranteed to keep you safe right where you are.

  5. Compare Yourself with Others
    A popular pastime for many entrepreneurs is to hop on the internet for a bit of information, notice someone else’s outstanding website/course/graphics/book/social media presence and more, and begin comparing your Chapter One in business with their Chapter Ten.With each scroll of the mouse, discouragement grows, and in 20 minutes or less they’ve convinced themselves they’ll never measure up, God must not have called them to do this, so why bother, let’s go knit a doggie sweater instead.


Of course, there’s another way.

I could start today, make imperfect progress, live for an audience of One, try new things, and choose contentment with who God’s created me to be.

How about you? Which one of these five is your go-to way to play small?


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