Whether you are running a side hustle or a full time enterprise, you wear the C.E.O. hat. At all times. You have a responsibility to strategize, plan, and see the big picture for your business.
Even when you are still the chief bottle washer.
But that can be ALOT. Trust me I get it. We are pros at checking the list.
But the big picture goal setting. Whew! That’s hard.
- Visualizing the growth opportunities
- Developing a plan for marketing that includes key metrics
- Getting out of our comfort zones
- Understanding how to navigate the gaps and areas of where you didn’t get your goals
So here is a quick story and three easy ways to get you started:
Last year, I asked one of my entrepreneurship classes the following question:
What was your big win for the week?
Before the class started, I was talking informally with the participants. Students were sharing a week of roadblocks. Personal challenges. Family drama. Health issues. Money problems. All types of things were showing up and they were grumbly.
And to be frank, I was dealing with my own set of challenges. I didn’t want to sit in that energy and tackle the tough lesson we had on the agenda.
So, I ditched the first part of class and had them start with the wins.
Slowly, participants started thinking and sharing small wins
- I made the scary phone call
- I asked a question related to my finances
- I tackled a scary technical issue
- I made some money unexpectedly
- I found a few new friends on social media
And the energy shifted in the room. People were high fiving each other. Giving hugs. Smiling. Sharing encouraging words. Finding additional wins whenever people were being too cautious about celebrating.
The whole mood of the group uplifted.
So guess what happened when I introduced the topic? One that normally has people grumbling on a good day. They were ready to learn. AND in a mindset where they were open to brainstorming solutions. Willing to see their weak spots. And also ready to leverage their strengths.
I share this story because your mindset plays a HUGE role in goal setting. Your ability to be in a powerful state during goal setting is crucial. You want every cell in your body resonating with possibilities. NOT problems.
This is not to say that you have to ignore the challenges you are dealing with. It’s hard to think big when your business isn’t earning enough money. Or be creative with marketing when your back is up against the wall when finishing a client project.
But you can start tackling things differently if you are in a growth mindset.
So consider this idea for your annual goal setting. And before you start rattling off the never ending list of goals, do these three things:
List your wins before you write any goals
Ever wonder why major corporations spend thousands on retreats for their senior executives? Easy. If you are in a beautiful setting with good food and having great experiences, you are likely to think with better results.
There is no reason why you can’t duplicate this idea – even on a dollar store budget.
Here are a few tips:
Review your wins BEFORE you open an email or do anything work related
The minute you start working, it will become easy to be distracted. So start early in your work day and spend 20-30 min on this activity
Play music that gets you in a positive mood
Remember when early morning radio stations used to only play upbeat music? I do. The commute can be a beast! So find a streaming channel that uplifts or inspires you.
Drink or eat something that speaks to your soul
OK so I’m totally sipping on my fav Starbucks beverage as I’m writing this. LOL. But seriously, your mood makes a difference. So spoil yourself and enjoy a treat while doing this activity.
Go past the surface to remember your wins – big and small
Start with your small wins first
I purposefully challenged the group to just start off the top of their head. I knew if they thought too long, they might talk themselves out of them. If you are struggling because you STILL didn’t reach your big wins, start small. Just start naming anything that was an improvement over the year prior
Look back over your calendar to see what makes you smile
Now be careful with this activity. Because you might get sucked into “ohhh I didn’t do this”. LOL. But I’m betting if you flip through your calendar or emails, you’ll find things that make you smile. Don’t analyze them. Don’t stress over what is still to be completed. Just write down whatever made you smile.
Invite a coach or an fellow entrepreneur and share your wins
Whenever I’m participating in or delivering business coaching programs, I love observing when an individual shares a win. Why? Because the energy level of everyone else participating kicks up a notch. It’s easy to get charged when you hear someone hitting their goals. It can be motiving and challenging. Challenging because it reminds you that you need to get your own actions in gear. lol. So don’t wait until you are in an “official” program. Get a friend to the table or invite a business coach to help you review your list.