You've made it to that point in the year where most people have blown off their resolutions, quit going to the gym, and returned to life as they once knew it.
But not you, right?
You might be tired of goal setting blog posts at this point, and I get it, but the sad fact is that too many people are only just now getting around to thinking about what they really want this year. If you've already set your goals, great. If not, review my previous post about the importance of looking back before you make a new plan. Then, strap yourself in and let's look at how to get what you really want this year.
Because, let's face it, you need this to be your year. According to many people I've talked to, 2018 was not their best year (to put it mildly). If that's also you, then you need to see big improvements over last year. You want to see real, positive, sustainable growth this year.
So how do we actually DO that? These three ideas aren't always easy, but they're exactly what you need to grow your business like never before.
Step 1: Know what really matters (to you)
Inside the Incubator, we work on 90-day Income Projects, which means you pick a direction and keep working in that direction for about 90 days before you shift tracks. That's enough time to get useful data in most cases, but not so long that you can't recover if things aren't going well.
Now, nobody wants things to go poorly, but the nature of an Income Project is that it often involves some kind of experimentation. And you never really know how an experiment is going to turn out before it's over. Sometimes you can get useful data in as little as 30 days, but for the most part, you need 90 days from idea to execution in order to evaluate what really worked, and what to do next. Remember: Plan. Do. Evaluate.
So here we are, 2 weeks into the new year and folks are getting cold feet, trying to change their mind about their goals:
"Last years numbers are in and I want this year to be so much better, so maybe we should...'
"I know we decided to launch this, but I want to launch THAT instead..."
"I know we agreed to x, but I want to..."
Nooooooo! I know it's tempting to switch things up if you're not seeing results right away, but you've got to stay the course. Set a direction and stay the freaking course.
We laid out the parameters for their experiment. We defined what success would look like with that project. Now we need to follow through. Changing things now will only cloud the data and make it harder to know what to do next.
Being clear on your definitions is important. I said in my last post that you need to be specific, but not just about the goal. You need to be specific about what really matters in relation to that goal. Remember that my client had two goals: one related to his health, and another related to having 4 day work weeks. He believed that he'd have to work a lot harder first to grow the business before he could take time off.
But his health had other plans.
His doctor put him on strict bed rest for several weeks. He got a zero day work week much sooner than expected.
Since he used Dreamblazing to pre-prioritize his goals, he knew that caring for his health was his number one priority. Unable to work, we talked about what would have to change now in order for him to be able to tend to his health and keep the business running as smoothly as possible.
He created new process documents and hired a part-time staffer to run those processes while he was in recovery. The new hire worked out very well and stayed on to run the business. My client was then able to use that freed-up time to research and develop a new offer that will be his income project for the first quarter of the year. Oh, and he's working much closer to a 4 day work week now.
So get clear on what "success" looks like for you. I recommend using Dreamblazing to help you hammer out your 5 Key Areas of Success. It's now available inside the Rising Tide member area (it's FREE to register!). Once you have clarity on what really matters, then it's a lot easier to know when you've "made it". Just be careful to not keep moving the needle as you go (a classic Fusion Creative move), or success will always feel just out of reach.
Again: Plan. Do. Evaluate.
This is about what matters to you. Yes, you want to take the goals and dreams of your loved ones into account when making your own plans, but only you can go after what's important to you. No one else knows what really matters to you like you do. As a coach, I can't want something for my clients more than they want it for themselves. Otherwise, it's not their goal or dream anymore.
Step 2: Set DUMB Goals for what really matters
We talked about this in my last post. Doable, Understandable, Meaningful, and Believe-able. Yes, it would be great to let the Law of Attraction make it rain money from the sky for you - and I'm open to that possibility. But, as I've said before, we can't control the outcome. All we can do is influence it. It's easier to influence the results when those results are useful to us.
If you know the goal is doable (either because you've done it before or know someone that's done something similar), you erase the doubt that it's possible. If you understand what it takes to achieve the goal, then you know it's doable by you (or your team, if you've got help... and you will have help). Once you know it can be done and that it can be done by you/your team, then it's got to be meaningful or you won't follow through. If that goal doesn't get you moving, nothing will motivate you to stay the course.
That said, you can know it's doable, know that your team has the capacity to do it, and it can be filled with meaning for you, but if you don't believe in yourself or your team, you're dead in the water. There's nothing wrong with downsizing your milestones toward a goal until they feel believable. Remember that Confucius said it doesn't matter how slow you go, so long as you keep going. Ride that snail, cowpoke!
Yeah, I get that you want to go faster and do thing bigger. Don't we all? Well sometimes you've got to know your limits and do what you can as you're able. If that means going on a smaller scale to start, then START. Nobody played Carnegie Hall their first day out.
Step 3: Ask for Help
Don't go it alone. Whether you hire a sitter for a few hours, work with a coach, or are part of an accountability program like A-Club, ask for help. Don't try to do all the things by yourself. Every task, large or small not only takes physical effort, it takes mental effort. The emotional load on most entrepreneurs can be excruciating, and anything you can do to lighten that load even a little has dramatic impact.
Every bit of help counts. It doesn't have to be paid help, either. It can be an idea from a friend, a helping hand from a neighbor, or just being willing to let other people take care of you once in a while. One of my clients made a goal to boldly ask for and receive help this year because they're like so many Fusion Creatives that think that they should do all the things because they can. In the process, they've strengthened friendships, eased their own work load, and streamlined the way their business runs so that they can do more to serve the people that matter most and still have time out for themselves.
Getting help is about collecting your resources, which comes in many forms, and using them responsibly. Remember what I said in The Secret Watch. Help is a two-way street: Give. Receive. Reciprocity is a beautiful thing.
Speaking of help...
Enrollment for A-Club is now open. Not only do we help you set and prioritize your goals, you also get weekly accountability and support to keep you on track to accomplishing your goals. You learn how to break down goals into monthly milestones, and get support and encouragement from our members if you get stuck. Plus, this year I've added one-on-one coaching sessions with me every few months to help you stay the course on your goals and make faster progress. We've also got virtual co-working times and monthly training sessions - all designed to help you get everything that really matters to you this year.