It’s the second quarter of 2013 and it’s been three months since New Year’s Day. Or close to it. And it’s likely been three months since you told yourself, “This year is going to be better.”
Is it better? If it is, that is fantastic. That means you are doing what you need to do to make this year better.
What if it’s not better? Well, don’t fret. You still have this quarter and two more to make it better. But we better get to the work of making it better.
It’s time for a change and here’s how:
Take a truthful inventory of your business, of your life and of you. What’s working? What’s not? Is your marketing plan producing the number of leads you want? Are you taking care of your health like you want? Are you living a balanced life like you want? This inventory is one of the best gifts you can give yourself and your business. Make sure you are brutally honest with yourself. It’s ok if some things aren’t working for you. But don’t get stuck on them. Clearly identify each item that is helping or hurting. There are a multitude of resources that you can use to help do this. A good ol’ pen and a piece of paper is one way. Put a line down the middle of the page and on the left list what’s working. On the right list what’s not. Or, Google “Clean Sweep Assessment”. You’ll find a number of links to this sort of self-assessment. The goal with the assessment is to eventually get a score of 100. Keep working with it as you take steps to improve your life. The simple practice of taking the assessment, working on the items you want to improve and then taking the assessment frequently will help you achieve the better life you seek.
Once you’ve done the assessment, decide what you want to improve. Whether you are working with a pen and paper – good and bad type list or the Clean Sweep Assessment, certain aspects of your life screaming for improvement will virtually jump out at you. Identify the top ten. Group them into categories. The Clean Sweep Assessment offers sensible categories. Or you may want to use: Business, Personal, Physical, and Spiritual, for example. Write them down and then list the steps that you will take to achieve each change. Put timelines on these. And be realistic when setting the timelines. Do the hardest ones first and then spread the others to three months, six months, nine months, etc. But schedule them for this year. We are talking about making this year better after all.
Now, get five note cards. Write these steps and your timelines on each. Then put the cards where you will see them daily, and often. Put them at your bedside, on your desk, in your car, on your mirror, and in your bathroom. Put them anywhere you look frequently. You don’t have to read each word each day. Just writing them down is a critical step. You still have to take action on each step. And they will be ever present to remind you of what you need to do.
Use this process often. Each quarter is good, but monthly is better. And better is what we want.
A personal note: You are not alone in this process. I embarked on the Clean Sweep Assessment in late 2012. And I just took the assessment again and my score improved 9 points. I’m far from 100 but through daily efforts I am making progress. Change is a daily commitment and a choice. And it also requires seeking help from people and resources. Some resources that I find helpful are two books: The Passion Test and StrengthsFinder 2.0. I also have a business and personal coach who helps immensely. I encourage you to seek out these types of resources. Take it one change at a time. One day at a time. And before you know it life will be better!