I sometimes feel that as I age, the faster time seems to fly by. Already it’s September!
Things always seem to grind to a halt during August as people go away on summer holidays. As soon as September comes around, kids go back to school, the Tube is again crowded with people, and everyone returns to their desks to find work very busy. It’s a great time to take a step back, assess your situation, and reset your behaviour in order to achieve your goals for the end of the year.
During my days in the corporate world, September was always the time of year when senior management would dust off the plans set in January and see how actual results would stack up. Many would realise that there was still so much to complete and occasionally some would start to panic about how to get it all done. The last quarter of the year would often be my most productive because there was still a set target to focus on yet the timeline was shortened. I loved it! That little bit of extra pressure excited me and often meant that others became more committed to getting work done.
I’m the type of person who loves planning, but perhaps you’re feeling overwhelmed by it all. If so, here are six tips to get you back on track.
1. revisit your plan
At the beginning of the year, you may have started with a plan of all the things you wanted to achieve with your business. When did you last look at it? What have you managed to achieve already? Do your remaining goals still make sense based on what you’ve learned about your business during the past 9 months?
2. make some revisions
Take yourself forward to the 31st of December. Picture yourself and your business on that day. What are you telling yourself that you are so proud to have achieved? Make some revisions to your original plan based upon this visualisation.
3. ask why
You should now have a list of things that you still want to complete by the end of the year. Now go through the list and ask yourself why each of those things are important. By achieving that goal, what will it give to you or your business? Understanding why each goal is important will not only help you to stay motivated and on track, but also help you to focus on what’s important.
4. create milestones
You now have your list of goals and know why you want to achieve them; however, goals can sometimes be overwhelming and intimidating unless they are broken down into smaller, manageable chunks. Ask yourself what you need to achieve by the end of November in order to know that you’re on track for your year end goal. What do you need to achieve by the end of October? What about the end of September? Having milestones in place will help you manage your tasks and continue to make progress.
Many entrepreneurs are on their own and don’t have others to help them with the day-to-day tasks of running the business. Once you have your milestones in place for the end of September, ask yourself which one is most important to complete first. Understanding how your tasks stack up against one another in terms of their importance will help you when juggling the multiple roles within your company plus the roles of spouse, parent, friend, etc..
6. celebrate your success
It’s very easy to get caught up in what’s next on your to do list and not take a moment to celebrate how far you’ve already come or the progress you’re continuing to make. Take a moment to pat yourself on the back and be proud of your achievements!
need more support?
If you have found this article useful, I am hosting a free London Meetup on Thursday, 12 September to help you find focus for the rest of 2013. You can RSVP for the event here.
over to you
I’d love to hear what you think. What are your tips for staying focused on the goals you’ve set yourself? Leave a comment below and let us know!