A friend of mine was recently chatting with a group of other entrepreneurs about their struggles in start-up businesses. There were a lot of common themes like managing multiple clients, drumming up a new business, what business management products to buy and dealing with challenging customers. The biggest: Time!
Finally, an acquaintance that had been in business for more than 20 years said, “My biggest challenge is making time for my own business. I get the invoicing done, the clients are taken care of, the warehouse is stocked… but my website is out of date and my social media could be more active and I haven’t had time to do any planning for the next year.”
There was a collective hush in the group. They all nodded, realizing they did the same. They were all so busy working in their business that they forgot to work on their business. That happens to all of us – whether we are entrepreneurs or parents or CEOs – we are constantly juggling multiple priorities. And usually at the expense of ourselves.
You know by now I’m a big fan of having a PLAN (if not, go back and read the blogs about the importance of a plan right now!). Here’s the thing most of us miss: Plans are living, breathing documents! Your plan points the way forward to reach your goals. It both guides you forward and helps you focus on why your goals are important to you. And much like life isn’t a still, unchanging thing, neither should our plans be this rigid, dusty thing on the shelf!
So, it’s time to dust off that plan and make sure it’s still tracking with your life, your career and your goals. Take 1 hour, once a month and focus on just YOU and your PLAN. Can’t commit an hour? Then commit 30 minutes! Just make the commitment!
First, prepare your brain to be entirely focused and in the moment. Unplug! Shut down your email and put your phone away. Turn off the news and grab some coffee or tea – whatever will keep you from jumping up to make the excuse to go do something else! Get comfortable – if that means you have music on, do that! If you’re a creative, doodle and draw, just don’t give up on your time to focus on your plan. Even if you have to get away and sit in a coffee shop where no one knows you, do it!
Settle in to evaluate and revise your plan: Have you reached any milestones? Do you need to spend more time on a different goal? Does an old goal need to drop off the list because it’s not as important anymore? Are there new goals to add? Or goals that need revision?
Once you make the commitment, you’ll be energized about why you set these goals in the first place! And being energized helps you head right back into the business of working on your plan again.