Posts Tagged ‘accomplishment’

Creating a workable plan

I started to work on my business plan for 2019 this weekend. It might not seem like the most exciting way to spend a Saturday night, but it was for me 🙂 I’ve mapped out all that I want to do next year and it feels totally do-able!

In my Jump Start Your Year workshop last week, I spoke about the importance of setting goals that inspire and motivate you rather than leave you feeling overwhelmed or frustrated. If the goal seems daunting before you even start, it will be much harder to say committed to it when your faced with challenges or obstacles along the way.

After the success I had using my 90-Day Level Up Journal, I decided to break down my goals into quarterly chunks. I’ve lined up the workshops I want to host, the webinars I want to do as well as product and program releases. I’ve got the outline on my office wall so I don’t lose focus and I’m keeping an open mind, knowing that I will connect with people and gain knowledge that will help me adjust the plan to serve me even better 🙂

Our goals are meant to challenge us to stretch. In order to successfully make them happen, we have to be willing and able to step outside our comfort zone. What we don’t want are goals that intimidate us or leave us unsure of where we would even start.

I think it’s important to set realistic benchmarks that when achieved, push us to do more to bring us closer to realizing our goals. I believe it also helps to create incentives for ourselves for when those benchmarks are reached. Celebrating our accomplishments is important to the pursuit of our goals. It allows us to recognize our progress in a tangible way, giving ourselves credit for the work done so far.

In order to make sure that we’re making the progress we want on our goals, it’s important to check in with ourselves on a consistent basis. When we don’t do this, it can be easy to fall off track or get pulled in a completely different direction that doesn’t serve you at all. Tracking our progress on at least a weekly basis can make the difference between making significant strides and spinning your wheels in mud!

If you’d like some guidance in planning your goals for 2019, I invite you to check out the workbook from my Jump Start Your Year workshop, click here to get it for just $17 with the coupon code JUMPSTART until the end of December. Let’s make 2019 our best year yet!

You own your time!

I was watching a show on the weekend where Harry Belafonte was being interviewed. He was being asked for advice on how to be a social activist today. Of course, Mr. Belafonte has had a lot of experience as a social activist from his work during the civil rights movement to fighting apartheid in South Africa. The person who was speaking with him thanked his and he said something that has stuck with me – he said the pleasure was his and that time is the only thing can give anyone since it’s the only thing he truly owns.

I believe that’s a powerful statement. Do you feel like you own your time or do you feel like someone else has control over it. I know that my greatest points of frustration were times when I felt like my time wasn’t my own. I wasn’t consciously choosing where my time was spent. I was doing things that other people wanted me to do, or things I thought they wanted me to do without considering whether it was the best use of my time. By the time I figured out it wasn’t time well spent, I had already too far gone.

When I’m at my most fulfilled, I’m doing the things that are important to me. They’re either things that bring me joy, or things that are going to bring me closer to achieving my goals. The sweetest spot, is when the things that I’m doing that help me get closer to my goals are things that I enjoy J

I believe there are three things you need to do in order to really own your time:

  1. Get clear on the mission and vision for your life
  2. Know what your priorities are and why they are important to you
  3. Set boundaries based on your priorities

When you have these three points covered, you have clarity on the activities that are a good use of your time. You know what to say yes to and what to say no to. You reduce feelings of frustration and overwhelm which has a positive ripple effect on your relationships!

Regardless of how much control you feel you have over your time right now, the good news is that things can always change for the better. You want to take back control of your time? Get comfortable saying no. Create a plan for how you want your day to go and be mindful of interruptions and distractions. Ask for help.

Want some help getting started? Schedule a 30-minute complimentary, no obligation call with me today!

Fourth Quarter Check-In

Just like that, we’re in the final quarter of 2018! While you may be asking where the time went, now is the time to review what you accomplished in the first 3 quarters of the year.  If you didn’t achieve all that you wanted to personally or professionally, the first thing to remember is that it’s not too late to finish the year off with a bang.  The second thing to do is make a commitment to making next year more productive than this one!

From my personal experience, I know that if I don’t write my goals down (and review them regularly), they don’t get done.  I also know that when I when I have a plan in place to make the goals happen, they actually do, even if they didn’t go exactly according to plan.  Achieving your goals is about going beyond “wishful thinking”.  Don’t hope your goals become a reality, create a plan and take action and make your goals a reality!

If this year wasn’t as successful as you had wanted it to be, now’s the time to review what worked and what didn’t.  You may need to make some minor adjustments, or you may need a complete overhaul.  Whatever it is that you need to do to get better results next year, setting the foundation now can only work to your benefit.  When January comes around, you will not only be able to hit the ground running, but you’ll also have things in place that will allow you to maintain momentum and commitment through challenging times.

Reviewing what didn’t work and tweaking the plan isn’t meant to be a self-deprecating exercise.  It doesn’t make sense to beat ourselves up about things that have already happened that can’t be undone.  When we know better, we do better, and that’s the approach that we must take when it comes to our goals. There is a wealth of information out there that can help you to gain the clarity you need and access the resources required to achieve your goals.  We just have to be willing to ask for help and remain open-minded about the possibilities that exist that can take us where we want to go in all areas of our life, business or pleasure.

Where do you want to be personally and professionally a year from today?  Once you have clarity on this you can start to develop the plan to make it happen.  Not everything is going to go according to plan, but you will have a guide that will help you to figure out whether you’re getting closer to or further away from your goals.  Wishing you much success in the final quarter of 2018!

 

The purpose of planning

I wasn’t always a planner. I think for the first 20 years of my life, most of the important decisions had been made for me. That might be why I was so lost in my final year of university when people would ask me what my plans were after graduation. I figured I’d get a job. What exactly I’d be doing, I hadn’t given much thought to.

I think that because so much of my life was planned for such a long time, I actually dismissed planning as something that I should worry about. I figured as long as I was doing my duty, working a job and paying the bills, I’d be alright.

It didn’t take long for me to realize that flying by the seat of my pants was not something that I was okay with. I needed to be working towards something, not just working. I started off setting financial goals – pay off my student loans. After that was achieved, I decided that if I was going to get where I wanted to be professionally, then I had to go back to school and get my Masters degree, so I worked towards achieving that.

After getting my second degree, I thought I would be happy. I thought that I could just set my life on cruise control and everything would be great! I was wrong. It took chronic unhappiness with my career and my father passing away for me to realize that I needed to get back in the driver’s seat of my life.

When I have a goal, I work to make it happen. It’s when I delude myself into thinking that there’s no more left to do that I get restless and bored. Those feelings of being unfulfilled can be haunting. You know something is missing, but you’re not sure what. You look back at what you’ve achieved and tell yourself you should be grateful for where you’re at. The problem is, you want more.

That’s what I’ve come to realize, that the work is never done. It’s part of the journey. We get to make our dreams a reality if we choose to. We get to ask ourselves every day, what else is possible? We have the opportunity to test our limits and go beyond them.

It all starts with a plan though doesn’t it? We might not have all the steps figured out, and that’s okay! It’s about making a conscious effort to decide what we’re going to do on a daily basis that will bring us that fulfillment we’re looking for.

Without a plan, we don’t know where to start, or what we should be doing. Our plan drives our action. If we don’t take action, then just like the quote in the image says, our goals remain simple wishes. If you’re okay with that, then don’t worry about figuring out the plan!

If you do want to see if you can make your goals a reality, then you have to make the time to create the plan to make it happen. Remember, this is designed to guide you. As you take action, meet people and learn more, your plan will get adjusted and that’s okay. Stay focused on the goal and have faith that the right path for you to get there will reveal itself.

Plans take time and goals require effort. Don’t focus on how long it will take you to achieve your goals or the hard work that will be required of you. Focus on why you chose the goal in the first place. Remember that time is going to go by regardless of what you choose to do. Think about what else will be possible once that goal becomes a reality!

Are you ready to get planning? ♥

How I made June my most productive month

I’m not typically one to brag, but I’m pretty proud of myself and my accomplishments over the last 6 weeks. After canceling my live event in April, I was determined not to allow it to make the first half of the year a bust. I wanted to feel like I had made significant progress and I had 2 months to do it.

After licking my wounds and following up with everyone involved in the conference, I decided to take my own advice and pulled out my Level Up Journal. It’s a tool I have that prompts me to think about my 90 day goals, outline a plan and then tracks my progress twice a day.

As of today, I’m 2/3’s of the way through my first 90 days and feeling like a superstar 😉 Here’s what I’ve accomplished so far:

  • Posted 2 videos on my YouTube Channel
  • 2 speaking engagements (1 in-person, 1 in a Facebook Group I was invited to do a talk for)
  • 9 podcast interviews completed
  • 3 podcast interviews as a guest
  • Facilitated 2 workshops (in-person and online)
  • Weekly Facebook Lives on my business page
  • Launched my podcast!!!

How did I do this? Well they haven’t mastered cloning yet, and no one’s added an extra day to the week or a couple extra hours to a day, so it wasn’t anything magical 😉 I would say the big thing has been clarity and focus. I knew I wanted to launch my podcast and I knew that I wanted to do more videos in order to expand my visibility, so here’s what I did:

  • Set daily intentions for what I was going to do to get me closer to my goals
  • Set 2-3 daily tasks that were “must do’s”
  • Reviewed my progress and identified what wasn’t working on a daily basis
  • Made time for gratitude and positive thoughts
  • Didn’t allow set-backs to discourage me – kept my eye on the prize
  • Set a deadline for the podcast launch and announced it publicly to hold me to it

The crazy thing is I believe that I could have accomplished more if I really wanted to! These last 2 months have made it clear to me that it’s never about time. When we know what we want and have an idea of how to get started, all we have to do it take consistent action! The plan isn’t going to work itself and no one is going to do all the work for you.

If you want to achieve your goals bad enough, you will find a way and the time needed to make it happen. You won’t allow anything to distract you and any disappointments you may encounter won’t derail you. If you’ve been struggling and feel like the first half of the year wasn’t what you hoped it would be, let’s chat! You can schedule a time for a free, no-obligation call here.

Multitasking is overrated

I used to be proud of my ability to multitask. I could be on the phone, respond to emails and maybe even have the TV going on in the background as well. I thought that focusing on one thing at a time was the most ineffective way to work. I now know better and even though I still catch myself trying to do too much at the same time, I know that it isn’t how I do my best work.

Laser focus is the way to get things done, if you want to get it done right the first time. When I try to do too much at once, something always suffers. I know that when I’m on the phone and trying to do other things, I’m not giving the work I’m doing or the conversation I’m having my full attention.

Have you ever been trying to have a conversation with someone while their focus is occupied by their phone or tablet? My partner’s focus is so terrible, that I have confessed to some of the most ridiculous things to get a reaction and just gotten a simple uh-huh, if any reaction at all! While that’s been fun, it can be frustrating when you’re trying to get someone’s attention to talk about something serious and you know that they’re focus is somewhere else.

Focusing on one was the key to me completing the first draft of my book in 6 weeks. I didn’t do any client calls. To be honest, I don’t even think I did much, if anything on social media at that time! I was 100% focused on the goal of getting the first draft done by the end of August because my publisher told me that would guarantee that I would have the book in my hand before the holiday. My goal was to write 4 pages a day. Some days I surpassed that goal, and other days I sat staring at my laptop screen. Regardless of whether I met that target every day, it was always the intention that I started my day with. The end result? First draft done by the end of August and physical books delivered to my home by the first week of November.

That was the first time I realized the power of focusing on one thing at a time. I had been talking about writing a book for 3 years. I even tried doing a 60 day writers challenge and got 130 plus pages completed, but couldn’t find a way to finish it. I was able to get the work done in 6 weeks because I had quit my job and had no excuses to not get it done. Not only did I finally have the time, but I was 100% committed to making my dream of being a published author a reality.

I know that quitting your job isn’t an option for everyone when it comes to freeing up your time to focus on your goals. I do believe that we have to put time aside for our goals if we want to make them a reality. Forget trying to do too much at once! If you don’t focus your time and energy, you’re not going to get the results you want and just be left frustrated and annoyed.

Let go of the need to multitask and try laser focus instead. Give it a try for a week and see what happens. Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments! ♥

Doing the hard work

Let’s face it – most of us know what we need to do to get closer to the achievement of our goals. It isn’t a lack of time that prevents us from doing those things; it’s a simple lack of commitment. I’ve talked about commitment before, and this probably won’t be the last time I touch on the subject. Hard work isn’t something to run from or avoid. Facing it is a necessity if we want to make our goals a reality!

We avoid the hard work required to make significant progress towards our goals for a number of reasons. Some of these include:

  • We’re comfortably uncomfortable where we are
  • We’re afraid of failure
  • We’re afraid of success
  • Our “why” isn’t big enough
  • We don’t believe we deserve what we’re striving for

Whatever the reason is, we have to recognize that they are all excuses and let them go. If we can’t bring ourselves to letting go of the things that are holding us back, we won’t ever get where we say we want to be! We’ve all wanted something bad enough at some point in our lives that nothing could stop of from getting it. We all know what commitment looks like. The key is to find it and hold onto it as we move forward in achieving future goals.

If the goals you are working towards are ones that you set out for yourself, then it’s time to reflect on why this goal is important to you and what your life is going to look like if you choose not to do anything to achieve it. You have to decide that these goals are important enough for you to do the work necessary to make them happen!

The goals that are most important to us are going to take hard work. If they didn’t require us to work hard, they would be worthwhile goals. There’s nothing like seeing your hard work pay off. Knowing that you pushed yourself beyond what you though were your limits is rewarding. Doing things we once thought were impossible challenges us to think about what else is possible.

There’s nothing more exciting than realizing that we are capable of much more that we once thought. We finally understand what Marianne Williamson was talking about in her book A Return to Love when she says that we are: powerful beyond measure. Don’t allow your excuses to stop you from making your dreams a reality. The work needed to make it happen may be challenging, but you can do it! Remember, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it.

Be inspired and motivated by the work it will take to accomplish your goals, don’t be afraid to do the work. The rewards you receive for doing what it takes will be tenfold. Not only will you have achieved your goal, but the person you’ll become as you take the journey will be stronger in mind, body and soul as well. What are you waiting for? ♥

Measuring your progress

“You have to know your numbers!”  I have heard this numerous times. A business coach I worked with several years ago, would repeat it so much that it may as well have been the mantra of the program I was working with her in. At the time, I didn’t get it, but now I do.

This year I’ve decided to track my progress in a way I haven’t before. At the start of the year, I worked on my marketing plan and set targets for where I want to be at the end of the year. Of course, I practiced what I preach and broke down the gap between where I am and where I want to be into manageable chunks. I divided the difference by 12 so I could track my progress on a monthly basis.

Well, we’ve just wrapped up January and after tracking how I did in January, I know I need to step things up in February! This isn’t to say that I didn’t make any progress at all, but it does mean that I didn’t reach my targets in most of the areas I’m tracking. This wasn’t a surprise to me. I was still in the midst of getting settle in the new house and hadn’t really done anything different from last year.

It was a wake-up call that showed me that maintaining the status quo isn’t going to get me where I want to be this year. My word for 2018 is Consistency. I plan to be consistent about measuring my progress on a regular basis this year. There have been times in the past where June has rolled around and I’m wondering what I’ve accomplished in the last six months!

Measuring your progress is vital to successfully achieving your goals. If you’re not measuring your progress, you won’t know if what you’re doing is getting the results you want or not. You could be getting results, but not at the speed or level that you want it to. You don’t want to wait until the end of the year to realize that you’ve been busy working away at things that haven’t gotten you closer to accomplishing your goals!

Whether it’s losing weight, saving money or growing your business, tracking your progress is a must! If you’re not moving forward the way you want to, think about what you can do differently. Ask for advice from people who have achieved the kinds of goals you’re working towards. Get help if you need it. There’s no point in feeling busy, overwhelmed and frustrated because things aren’t working out. Remember, you can always choose to try another path to get to your destination! ♥

The Final Stretch

About 15 years ago I complete my first 10 km run. I would love to say I ran the whole thing, but I didn’t. For me, the important thing was to complete it. I remember seeing the mark for the 9th kilometer and deciding that as tired as I was, I was going to run that final stretch. I wasn’t sure where the energy was going to come from, but I knew I wanted to get to that finish line as soon as possible!

Thinking about this recently made me realize the similarities in running that 10 km and pursuing our goals. We can be quick and full of energy at the start and if we aren’t fully prepared, we can start to lose energy when the finish line is nowhere in sight. We have a choice, we can give up and try again or we can adjust our pace so we can reach the finish line.

Here’s the thing, you may think that because you haven’t achieved your goal by now, it’s never going to happen. The truth is that the end of the year doesn’t mean that you have to have achieved your goals. You may have wanted to reach a certain point by this time in the year, and it hasn’t happened. That doesn’t mean it won’t. There are still things that you can do before the year is up. One of them is to reflect on your progress and adjust your plan moving forward.

Now is a perfect time of the year to reflect on what’s worked for you this year and be honest about the things that haven’t. You may have been doing this periodically throughout the year. Reflecting on the year as a whole is a great practice as well. If we don’t have clarity on these things, we won’t know what we should be doing more of and what we need to stop doing so we can make the best use of our time.

If your goals are important to you, don’t give up on them. Unless you had specific submission deadlines to meet, there’s still time to get it done. Persistence really does pay off. Achieving goals takes consistent effort and commitment. This isn’t a 100 metre dash. It would probably serve better to think about our goals as a marathon, never mind a 10 km run. Pace yourself, take care of yourself, and stay focused on the end goal. You’ll get there when you’re meant to. ♥

Mastering a new art

I’ve been listening to the audio book The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson. I don’t think I have laughed so much listening to a personal development book! If you can get past the crude language in the title, the book makes some very good points that have been a common theme for me this year. The biggest takeaway so far – stop focusing time and energy on stuff that is out of your control!

Easier said than done though, right? Well, for me it is. I’m sure that many of you have already mastered the art of not spending any time on things that are out of your control. I’m not there yet and willing to admit that when it comes to letting go of the need to control, I am a work in progress 😉

I decided to listen to this book last week because I was struggling with letting go of something that was bothering me. I knew that it was out of my control and the only thing I could do was decided how I was going to deal with it, but I was still frustrated. I knew that I was taking something personally that really didn’t have anything to do with me, but that didn’t stop me from being angry and annoyed.

As I started listening to the book, I realized that I was wasting time an energy on something that is out of my control. There are so many other things that need my time and attention, so why was I giving it to something that wasn’t going to change regardless of how much I stressed about it? I feel like I have to constantly remind myself to stop focusing on the wrong things. What are the wrong things? My top 3 are:

  • Stressing about the past
  • Worrying about what others are doing/thinking
  • Focusing on the problem and not the solution

I’ve made a great deal of progress in all areas, but I know that when I’m feeling overwhelmed and not being consistent in taking care of my own well-being, it can be so easy to fall into old, bad habits. I’m grateful for Mark Manson’s reminder to stop focusing on the things that don’t support me in getting to where I want to be or becoming the person I want to be.

Our time is too precious to waste on focusing on things that we have no control over. Focus on you, what you can do and who you need to be to create the life you want to live. The rest will take care of itself. ♥