Are there any of us who aren’t hoping to make this year better than last? Any who don’t plan, resolve and dream of reaching for more, being more and enjoying more… And wouldn’t you say it’s true that at this time, more than any other, we are aware that maybe it really is possible?
So what is it that makes you so optimistic today? I believe it’s a combination of determination and preparation. But I guess I don’t necessarily mean preparation in the sense of planning, although that is going to make this journey a lot easier. What I mean – really – is just preparring your mind to believe that YOU CAN DO THIS! It is obtainable, it’s not ridiculous or ludicrous or so far fetched that you should keep it a secret…
How bad do you want it? Well, that’s how close you’re going to get to it.
Of course it can be helpful to have some tangible, usable ideas to arm yourself with so that ‘this’ (whatever your “this” is) really does happen!
I tried to brake down what I do into steps/tips. Here are the 5 most important factors that I believe play a role in reaching my own goals!
1. Make Time. The #1 thing you can do for 2012 is make time to work ON your business before you get stuck back in your business. There is such a huge difference between “in” and “on”. When we work “in” our business we are doing the day to day. Editing, shooting, blogging, product design… All of this is your “in” business work. But when you work “on” your business, you are planning for the future. Schedule special time where email, blogs, to-do lists – all of that is put away and you are left with your thoughts and ideas as you plan for what you want the new year to bring. (This is the #1 factor for how I’m doing at any given time in the year and I think you’ll find the same to be true too!)
2. Reflect on the past year. We talked about this last year a little bit in this video. Acknowledge (and give yourself a pat on the back) what you accomplished but also look for where you still need to grow. Be very specific and make sure that you keep this as a document so that you can refer to it through out the year and next year when you do this again. I suggest having a business notebook where you can keep this information along with pricing, promotions, branding… It will become a journal that years from now you will look back on and you’ll see just how far you’ve come.
3. Go through your Client Lists. Go through all of your clients from 2011 and determine how much each client spent and how many people each client referred. This comes back to the 80/20 rule. Eighty percent of your business/profits will come from twenty percent of your clients. I have a red tab that I staple to each client folder that falls in my 20%. This allows me to make sure that I remember them is special promotions, opportunities and events easily by just pulling all my red tab files.
4. Set Goals & Plan for it. I love goals, but NOT vague generic goals. The key to accomplishing goals is to be specific on what it is you want, followed with creating action steps that will break your goal into manageable pieces so that you will actually see yourself accomplish it! If you really want things to happen you’ve got to plan for it. When we make to-do lists, if there is something on the list that feels overwhelming, we typically push that item down our priority ladder. The same goes for our goals. Make your goals and then give yourself an action plan to accomplish it!
Example: I want to read at least 15 business type books this year. First I figured out how many business type books I read last year. I could remember 13 titles off the top of my head, that made it feel doable. Next I added a page in my notebook (see #2) titled, ‘Books I read in 2012’ with lines 1 to 15 drawn out and room for more. Last I purchased the first 4 books I want to read. I’m already making myself accountable to see this through.
5. Put your money where you mouth is. Okay I don’t necessarily mean money, although maybe I do… I hear something along these lines a lot; “I really want to fill in blank but I just don’t have the ___________ (usually money). Sometimes this is true. But 90% of the time it’s just not. If you had to come up with that same amount of cash tomorrow because without it your car wouldn’t go, I bet you’d have it. What’s really happening is doubt, and usually that doubt is in yourself. If I want to have a more successful business, then I would invest in coaching with… Well me. 😉
How bad do you really want it, most people lie to themselves and put road blocks up from here to forever because they’re to scared to really go for it. In the words of Nike, “just do it!”
Let’s be honest, none of these are groundbreaking tips I’m offering. You may have picked up an idea or had one of your own sparked while reading but ultimately you know this… Any yet most still won’t apply what I’m saying, still won’t do what they secretly dream of… They will still continue to let fear control their decisions.