Have you reached this place in your life where you can feel in your bones that there is so much more potential in you and in your business?
You’re clear on your niche and the clients you serve. You enjoy the work you do.
Now you’re at the point where you just know that to get to the next level, and you need to be more strategic and smarter in the way that you work.
There are various things that you can see that are not as effective as they can be in how you run your business. It’s not sustainable to carry on this way. It doesn’t allow you to grow in the way you want to.
You have a lot of ideas about how to develop your services. You know what you need to do.
But you find yourself wondering and getting stuck on: “In what order do I do all these things?“
On a few occasions, you’ve started doing something for a day or two, and then you got lost in researching. Eventually, you’ve dropped it because you have so much client work to do.
I get it. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed with everything that you’re juggling and trying to figure it out all on your own.
This is exactly what I love helping my clients with so that they can bring the vision of their business into a reality without burning out.
So today, I will coach you how you can approach this situation so that you can prioritise and create a plan of action for yourself.
1. Become aware of your reality
Awareness of your reality is about understanding what’s going on for you and how your days flow. This may sound obvious, and yet we tend to spend so much of our time on autopilot.
We’re often unaware of the impact of something that we do, or that is happening to us. Without being truly aware of what’s happening in our lives, we can’t make a conscious decision and take steps to change it.
Awareness is the first step to change.
Observe what takes up your time.
I recommend clients to note down how they spend their day.
There are several ways in which you can do this:
✓ Pen and paper
✓ On a computer, using something like Word/Pages or Excel/Numbers
✓ A cloud-based application e.g. Google Docs, OneNote, Evernote available on a variety of digital devices
Pick your favourite method and give it a go for three days so that you can collect enough data.
2. Explore the possibilities
Great! Now you understand how you spend your days. Since you already have ideas about what will take your business to the next level, it’s time to explore the possibilities thoroughly.
With an open mind and a carte blanche, brainstorm all the options of what you could do.
Here are some questions to stimulate your idea generation:
What could you stop doing? What are the activites tiring you out that you’d love to cease doing?
What could you do less of? In which an area of your life could you ease off the gas pedal?
What could be automated? What are repeatable processes that can be automated at a low or reasonable cost that would save you time and energy?
What could be outsourced? What are the tasks that don’t bring you joy? Who would be excellent at performing these tasks and would love to do them for you?
What could be delegated? What is the proportion of the domestic duties that you’re carrying on your shoulders? Who could take some of that load off of you?
What could you continue to do? What are the things that are working well for you that you want to carry on doing? Consider both your business and home life.
What could you do more of? What have you been doing ad-hoc in your business that you’d love to be more consistent with?
What could you start doing? What have you been meaning to do for a long time and haven’t been able to get around to doing?
Write down all your ideas. Don’t discard anything.
3. Assess your options
Well done! You’ve just written a long list of possibilities of things you could do! But that’s where overwhelm can really kick in and stop you in your tracks.
To prevent this from happening, follow these two steps:
1. Prioritise and filter out your options by considering:
✓ Which option will make the most significant difference to you and your business?
✓ Which option can you implement first?
✓ Which option would you definitely NOT do?
✓ Which option appeals most to you?
What other questions could you ask yourself to help prioritise your options?
2. Apply the one-in-one-out principle:
This is KEY to creating the shift that you desire. Since you can’t pour more into an overflowing cup:
What is one task, activity or a habit you can remove from what you currently do that will free up time and energy for what you’d like to incorporate (more of) in your days to help you grow your business without burning out?
4. Action time
You are aware of how you spend your time and what’s draining your energy.
You’ve brainstormed a tone of ideas of things you could do and not do.
You’ve prioritised your options.
Now, it’s time to get down to: “What are you ACTUALLY going to do or not do?”
What will you commit to implementing?
Be specific. Exactly what will you do?
When will you do it? (Date, time, how long will it take you.)
Note this down – better still write it down in the comments and I will check in with you to see how you’ve got on.
5. Belt & braces
Too often we have that perfect plan mapped out, and then when it comes to putting it into practice, it falls off the wayside. Been there – done that? Me, too.
Perhaps there is something that has been preventing you from taking that next step again and again.
Or it could be an unexpected life event.
This is why it’s so important that before you wrap up, you ask yourself:
“What could get in the way of following through?”
“What will I do if that happens?”
6. Pop it in your diary!
Finally, put those actions in your calendar and add a reminder, so it doesn’t escape your attention.
And remember to let me know in the comments below, too. This way I can help you by checking in with how you’ve got on.
To your and your business growth!
Love what you’ve read above? Are you thinking “I’d give up answering the tough questions by myself. I’d rather have someone help me answer those questions, call out my B.S. and help me figure out what’s the best way forward for me.”? Awesome! Get in touch and let’s have a chat!
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