What do you want for 2021 and beyond?
Maybe you want to get a handle on your business finances, so you can ease financial stress, pay yourself more, and/or position your business to be stronger and more stable going forward. Or… maybe you want to overcome obstacles that have been holding you back from achieving the kind of success you know you’re capable of but haven’t yet achieved. Maybe your goal is to get laser focused on what really matters and get out of a stagnation rut in your business.
No matter what you envision, now is the perfect time to get clear on what you want and start taking steps to make it happen. A little outside-the-box thinking could bring some meaningful changes.
Don’t think of it as a resolution. It’s an evolution – for you and your business. That means changing from a simpler (maybe less effective) form and growing into something new, even better. It starts with being bold and fearless in your assessment of where you are now and how you got here. Then comes the really exciting part where you get focused on where you want to go and what it will take to get there. With that insight, you can plot the path to make it happen.
Overcoming obstacles is within your reach. A stronger, healthier business is within your reach. Financial stability for your business is within your reach – including regular pay and profits. Breaking out of the stagnation rut, achieving your business goals, and thriving is also within your reach. You just have to be willing to think differently and consistently take different actions.
Are you up for the challenge? Are you willing to be bold, fearless and focused to be able do things you’ve never done before and bring the changes you want to see?
I have some suggestions for how you can do that and make 2021 a life-changing year – in the best possible way.
So, let’s get started!
Boldly Embrace the Possibility of a New Financial Reality
Money isn’t everything, but let’s be honest. It has a huge impact on your ability to thrive, grow your business, and live the life you want to live. It fuels your ability to create what you dream of for your future.
That said, this past year has been a wake-up call for many. How about you? Did you feel confident and financially secure when faced with looming economic uncertainty? Or were you worried your business might not survive?
If worry set in and you realized you weren’t prepared, there are ways you can change that scenario and be stronger in the future. This is a good time to do an honest evaluation of whether your business is thriving and can withstand difficult times.
It’s probably not that you don’t have enough coming in, it’s more likely that the way you are managing that valuable resource could use some tweaking. Money management is a behavioral mindset. If you do things the way you’ve always done them, you’re likely to find yourself worrying the next time uncertainty exists. That means it’s time to be bold, willing to think differently, and change the way you’re managing your money.
You’re probably thinking that’s easy to say, right? For most business owners, the question is how.
Well, here’s how you can do it. Again, it starts with an honest evaluation of your starting point, and I encourage you to bravely explore (and face) your current financial reality. I have a Money Management Financial Planner that will help you in that evaluation. You can download it here: Download the Financial Planner
Look at everything… your revenue, your expenses, your debt, how much (and how regularly) you’re paying yourself, your strategy for being prepared for taxes or future needs, and your goals and dreams for your business. Then, using that information, you can define what needs to happen with your current situation to bring your goals and dreams to reality. Once you have done that, you can plot your course forward.
Don’t panic, it’s all pretty straightforward when you start to lay it out logically. And the Financial Planner will help you do that! Just keep an open mind and be willing to do this, so you can create the environment for something new, different, and better.
Be Willing to Make a Shift in Behaviors, Habits, and Mindset
What obstacles are you facing in your business? Are they internal, external, or both? You’re probably very aware of external obstacles and challenges, but did you do a double-take when you saw internal mentioned?
Every business faces obstacles and challenges. The external are usually pretty clear. The internal can be a little trickier to spot and overcome.
As the business owner, you are the business. The choices you make and the actions you take determine how well the business runs, as well as its potential for success. Internal challenges and obstacles can hold you back – whether you are aware of them or not.
So, what are examples of internal obstacles? Let’s start with mindset. How do you handle change? How do you view and use your time? What drives your decision making and actions? All of those can affect your business greatly, and they all revolve around your mindset.
Mindset is often reflected in your habits and behaviors in the day-to-day. So, looking at this potential obstacle is important. If you’ve never dug deep and considered how your mindset might be holding you back, again, now is a great time to make the bold choice to be curious and uncover what might be lurking beneath the surface.
Your Natural Productivity Style can also affect the running of your business and its potential for success. When you understand your personal style – your strengths, weaknesses, and how you work best – you can create an environment that is streamlined and highly effective for you.
There is a way to learn more about yourself as a business owner, clearly define your strengths and weaknesses, as well as how you work best, and start to change some of your habits and behaviors so you are taking conscious action, rather than being controlled by something unseen. You can embark on a valuable journey of discovering your Natural Productivity Style HERE and boldly start learning how to make your personal style work for you and your business.
Boldly Take Action to Get Focused and Out of the Rut of Stagnation
Your final mission, should you decide to accept it, is to take action in the form of meaningful action. Lift yourself and your business out of the stagnation rut and start moving toward your goals and dreams – with focus and purpose.
What do you spend time working on that keeps you busy but doesn’t actually benefit your business? Are you focusing on the right things every day? Do you know what those right things are?
We each only have so many hours in a day. What we choose to do with our time and energy matters. I challenge you to really consider how you are using your time and what you are focusing on. You can download this Weekly Time Log to help you track where your time is going. Download the Time Log
Business owners will often say that how they use their time isn’t always within their control, but I also challenge you to flip that way of thinking – if that is your way of thinking.
The truth is, we are the only ones who can control how our days go and what we focus on. Being more intentional and focused with your time, and not allowing yourself to be derailed by chronic wastes of time, is essential to moving your business forward and being able to do things you’ve dreamed of but have not yet accomplished.
I know the following words make some business owners cringe, but they will help you get a handle on busy-ness and get down to business. Those words are systems, processes, and evaluation.
Systems and processes create a structure for how you do things. They free up time for the truly important things in your business – like those things you love to do and do well.
And here’s where the evaluation piece comes in. What tasks, activities, or obligations would benefit from systemization or having a documented process in place? Start by evaluating what’s working and what’s not in your business. What could be done more efficiently if you weren’t trying to recreate the wheel every time it needed to be done, or… if you didn’t have to spend hours explaining and training someone else to do it for you?
Also consider what needs to be done, but is something you don’t like to do, or even avoid doing or don’t do well. Struggling to do something you hate to do or don’t do well uses up valuable time. It’s also a huge drain on your energy to have those tasks hanging over you like a gloomy cloud. So, evaluate which tasks those are and outsource or hire someone else to manage them. Be bold, be fearless, and be honest in this evaluation. Doing so is one more way you can do things differently to increase your potential and actual chances for success.
Progress is impossible without change. If we don’t change our mindset and actions, we’ll keep getting the results we’ve always gotten. Be intentional about the choices you make in the coming year and you could have a year that exceeds your dreams. You just have to be bold and focused, so you can do what you’ve dreamed of but never done in 2021.