The New Year often brings a sudden urge to start fresh. This can look different for everyone. Some people clean and organize, others spend weeks inking in dates and figures, or make charts and lists trying to organize their time.
I cringe when my clients tell me about color-coded folders and gold-embossed day planners. Don’t get me wrong; I love a good filing system just as much as the next office guru. But when I hear about filing and organizing, I hear more than good intentions – I hear procrastination. My advice to all my clients is to avoid getting caught up in the “ready” and the “set,” and simply “go”!
Here’s a simple way to get started:
Put pen to paper and ask yourself, “What is my desired goal or outcome for this year?”
Focus on this simple question and what the answer is RIGHT NOW. The rest will fall into place. The answer will get the ball rolling in the right direction for you. You don’t need to worry about HOW you’re going to get there all you need to focus on is the end result. Working with the ‘end in mind’ allows room to negotiate the details, and gives your life valuable ‘white space’.
What is White Space?
White space gives room in life to make anything possible. It can be seen when you clean out the junk drawer, or leave appointments open on your calendar. It’s that space in your chest that allows you to breathe deep and that five minutes of quiet that reminds you why you wanted all of this in the first place. White space is what brings balance to a plan. It’s clean, it’s simple, and it’s essential to a successful life.
Make a white space visual by using an 8.5 x 11 sheet of white copy paper and writing this question in the middle of the page: “What is my desired goal or outcome for this year?”
Now, answer the question, then start to write down (in no special order) the 3-5 things that MUST happen this year in order to reach this desired goal or outcome. Here’s an example; let’s say it’s your year to finally launch your photography business. You’ve been doing this as a side hobby, but you’ve decided that you are ready to serve to earn a living doing it. Here are a few things that could make that happen:
- Establish an online presence by purchasing a website domain to launch your new business, as well as creating email and social media accounts.
- Set a 90 day timeline where this new website will launch and your social media structures are in place to start establishing and aligning your new client base
- Define your logo and maybe brochures to leave behind when meeting with prospects
- Build your LinkedIn business profile to share what you have to offer
- Launch and learn!
By creating this list, you not only create an action plan for the next year, but you also create a rough structure that you can refer back to in years to come. If your goal for 2016 doesn’t happen, you are able to refer back to this list and identify what worked and what didn’t. Once you identify the items on the list that you either didn’t accomplish or that were not helpful to your goal, you can make adjustments rather than starting next year’s list completely from scratch. This is process is the “learning” in the phrase “Launch and learn.”
This year I challenge you to focus on this list as the ONLY THING you do the first weeks of January. This simple process will start to ignite the focus necessary to tackle tasks that will directly affect your success.
January is the time when anything feels possible. I invite you to embrace that feeling and launch into action. In order to assist with your journey, I have an Ultimate Goal Worksheet that I would like to share with you. Please contact me directly in order to receive this gift with my compliments. It might be the best thing you will do for yourself all year.
I challenge you this week to put down the label maker and get started. Ask yourself, would you rather be tired from wanting it, or be exhausted from making it happen?
Your Chief Inspirational Officer….Marlo