You owe it to yourself to get focused, get clear on what you want to accomplish, and get rid of all the things in your day that don’t move you closer to your goals. The first question is what are you committing to? What’s your commitment to your business growth on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis? Do you have a commitment for 2011 that you can break back down into action steps? Do you know what you should be doing on any given day you ‘show up’ to your business to work?
Showing up and doing the things that expand your business and make you money, that’s what it means to be committed to your business.
It’s easy to find things to stay busy with – there are so many things that grab our attention, the things we do instead of ‘getting the job done’. Is this you? Instead of engaging in the activities that will actually make you money, Do You Spend Time: NULL
- Reading and writing email
- Endlessly preparing for what you’re going to do next
- Spend time calling the same people over and over again even though you’re not getting the results you want and need?
- Reading and listening to endless accounts of other people’s success and wondering about your own
It is easy to get into a state of overwhelm. It is especially easy if you don’t have a commitment to a plan. How do you sort out what part of learning, studying and tweaking things is productive? When is it time to just get out of your own way and get the job done? When do you accept or decide that you don’t need to learn more, you just need to do more? In other words, when do you need to practice what you know so you can stop simply ‘knowing’ and actually get better at it?
(HINT: Practicing what you do in order to get better at it, is the key to making commitment easier (no, not easy, but easier).
Accept that some days your business is just going to scare the crap out of you. Just accepting that can be a relief. It doesn’t give you permission to stop producing. It just means it’s scary, you know it, you accept it, you go to work anyway… end of story. That’s called action in the face of fear that is commitment. Stop measuring yourself by other peoples’ standards or accomplishments. Just look at you and fix you. Everyone else is scared too – the ones you admire are just better and more experienced (they’ve practiced and practiced) at dealing with their fear and getting the job done in spite of it. We refer to that as courage. Courage is not the absence of fear. Courage means doing what is next, even when we are afraid. That’s commitment. Time is our most precious resource. Yet we squander it away too easily. In order to get on the right track of what to do in 2011, begin, by looking at what you’re actually doing. It can be tedious, even painful, but you need to track exactly how you spend your business time – either in 15 or 30 minute increments. For one week, write down everything you do. Don’t do different things so your accounting looks better – do what you normally do. That way you can take a hard look at it and see if what you’re doing is getting you where you want to go. You’ll learn how long it really takes to do certain activities. Observe when you feel mentally sharp, when you aren’t. You’ll see a pattern that has to do with time of day and/or type of activities. Observe how much time you spend focused on bringing in new business (where the money is) and how much of your time is spent on other things.
(If you just read this part and don’t do it, regardless of how much of a good idea you think it is, it won’t do you any good. Commitment is about taking action. Commitment is about taking a stab at something even if we don’t think we know how. Smart is knowing that the second step looks much easier AFTER we’ve taken the first step.)
Be willing to take a hard look in the mirror, be dead honest with yourself and make the changes you need to make. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done up until now. It matters what you do with what you learn about yourself, your habits and your patterns from now on. That is commitment to you and your business. We tend to procrastinate because we don’t think what we do or produce will be good enough – if we just learn one more thing, get a little better, we’ll be there.
But GETTING THERE is doing the job and getting better at it. It’s that corny old joke, “How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Practice, practice, practice. Your business requires that you practice yourself to success. That’s commitment.
This is critical. You may ‘know the material.’ But there is a huge gap between intellectually knowing something and owning it. In order to own material or a method, you need to be committed enough to practice it into muscle memory. What do I mean by muscle memory? Not having to think about how to do something. You can just do it. Remember when you learned to drive? Did you just read a book, or watch a video, or sit in on a class, and then get into your car and drive away? No, of course not. You got in the car and practiced with someone who knew how to drive. Were you nervous? Probably. But because you were committed to getting your license, you did it anyway. Because of that practice, by the time you sat for your license you had already started to form muscle memory. You could start the car and get into the stream of traffic without talking yourself through the steps. Eventually, through hours and hours of driving, you now drive without having to give it conscious thought. You don’t think about where the turn signals are, or how to release the clutch. Your ‘muscle memory’ has taken over. You’re not simply a knowledgeable driver, you’re a competent driver. Do you want your business to flourish with the same competence? It is up to you. Practicing the right actions builds your skills, building your skills and improving your game makes you more money. The key is, you have to be ‘at it’ to get ‘good at it’. Scary? Sure it is, but nobody ever learned anything new inside of their comfort zone. Nobody… and neither will you. Observe what you do and if you don’t like what you see, it’s time to get a new story. Here’s what that looks like:
Wherever you are today in your business – whatever level of success you’ve achieved, regardless of however long you’ve been at it, you can decide today to approach it differently and tell yourself and the world your new story.
For example: Up until now, in the 15 hours/week I build my business, I’ve been spending 12.5 hours in activities that don’t build my bottom line. NOW, I spend 12.5 hours prospecting, talking to new people for my business and 2.5 hours in the activities that used to take up most of my time. For 2011, you owe it to yourself to get focused, get clear on what you want to accomplish, and get rid of all the things in your day that don’t move you closer to your goals.
Prepare and practice what you’re going to say. Then go do it. That’s called commitment. It is a COMMITMENT to the ACTIONS that create a flourishing business. Isn’t it time your business flourished?
Commit yourself to your best year yet. You deserve it. Jillian Middleton http://www.savvysponsoring.com/
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