Donna: November is my favorite month of the year, because, for one it's my birthday month, but also because it's my signal to start wrapping up a year. Now, I don't mean sitting back and doing nothing for the last six working weeks of the year, because those six weeks can be super important for your business.
However, What I have found that smart, savvy business people do as the year begins to draw to a close is that they take the time to reflect before they jumped straight into the new year. So in this week's podcast, I want to share the method that I use to reflect, recharge and plan for the upcoming year.Let's do it!
Okay, so as I said, November it's my favorite month of the year, because yes, it's my birthday month, but also because it's a really important time as a business owner to take stock of the year that has been, and really set yourself up for success going into the new year. Now, remembering that in addition to being a business coach for women and moms in business, aside from that, I'm also a business owner too.
So I get that November is a crazy time for business owners. I'm also a mom. So I also get that November is nuts when it comes to wrapping up the school year and extra curricular activities and social commitments and all of those things. So when I tell you that November is the time to start planning for 2022.
It's totally understandable that you might be maybe rolling your eyes or you might be thinking, oh God, he is another thing that I've got to do. And it might feel really overwhelming. And I get that because I'm right here with you. Right. And I'm living this too right at this moment, but I wouldn't be here talking about this and suggesting this to you to do this exercise.
If it wasn't super helpful to your pathway going forward. And the reason that I know it will be super helpful for you is because that has been really super helpful for me so much. And each time that I do this, I am always thanking myself for taking the time in doing it. So let's start by talking about why it's so important to do this.
Why is it so important to add another thing to your list at this time in the year? And I can't believe that we're almost at the end of the year. It's, it's just come around so quickly. In addition to being a business coach for moms in business, I'm a dance studio owner. That is my business. And there have been a few times where I've been asked the question.
So what do you do? You know, it's social gatherings or business networking events. And when I respond with, well, I run a dance studio. There have been
brush off comments or just that look that comes across people's faces sometimes that, well, that's not a real business. That's just something that people do for fun.
My dad's studio is not a little dance studio. It's not a glorified hobby. It's a fully fledged business and it provides employment to six people, we teach hundreds of kids and adults as well, how to dance each year. And we turn multi-six figures. So typically for me at this time of the year, With flat out, I'm preparing my team for end of year performances, which is happening in a week's time.
And as well as we're preparing for community performances for Christmas events, we're promoting re enrollment for next year for our current students. We're recruiting team members for the new year with budget planning, we're creating marketing plans. So it's a crazy time and I'm sure whatever it is that you do within your business, at this time of the year is flat out too.
You know, if you're a product-based business, maybe you've been preparing stock levels for the Christmas rush, or if you're a service-based business, maybe you've been squeezing in as many clients as possible into your schedule because they need whatever it is that you provide before the Christmas period.
So I do understand firsthand that this time of year is really full on. And then I'm saying to you to look beyond that, to what do you want your vision to be for 2022? And maybe you're like, I can't even, I can't even see past the stuff I have in front of me for the next two months, let alone look into the future and do future casting for the next 12 months.
But let's just take a second to acknowledge what the past couple of years have been like. What a year 2021 has been. And I don't know about you, but there have been some incredible highs this year and some pretty, some pretty low lows. And I really hoping that we've seen the worst of what COVID has brought to us.
Let's hope that this is the back end of it, but we do need to take stock of the fact that even if your business and your lifestyle was relatively un-effective, Oh, sorry, let me rephrase that. Even if your business or your lifestyle was relatively unaffected, just the buzz of listening to how it has affected our nation and how COVID has affected the globe.
That does have an effect on us. It has an effect on energy, on our mental resilience and on the decisions that we make. And if you followed me for a while, you'll know that I love to have a clear strategy. I love to map things out and have a pretty good idea of where I'm headed.
But 2021 and 2020 in a lot of ways for a lot of people, it changed that to become more of a day to day, the strategy became more about how do I roll with this? Because at very short notice there was lots of pivoting and there was lots of shifts that needed to happen for businesses to survive. And because of this, even, like I said, if, if you were fortunate enough to have minimal impact on your business or your lifestyle from COVID.
Because of the uncertainty of what might be coming next, maybe you stopped looking forward. And those plans that you had, the vision that you had just wasn't possible, or it wasn't worthwhile worrying about because things were changing so rapidly. Maybe you were like, why bother future casting? Why have a plan?
Why have a strategy? If it's all beyond my control anyway, what's the point. So 2020 and 2021 have been like nothing else we've ever really experienced. And it's certainly been a very new experience. I think for our generation, when it comes to maintaining resilience in times of massive uncertainty and being adaptable and finding solutions to challenges that for some businesses were really make or break decisions.
But thankfully 2022 is fast approaching and I'm taking some steps to set myself up for a fresh new start in 2022. And my purpose in jumping on here today for this podcast is to invite you to join me. If you've been feeling overwhelmed and over tired, and you want to feel empowered and prepared to start 2022 with a clear plan for success, then please keep listening because, I'm going to chat about why it's important to take time to reflect now in November, and also to create a vision, a clear intention for the future ahead of you. Now, if maybe you're listening to this in December. Then that's not to say you shouldn't go ahead and do the things that I'm suggesting here, but ideally now that we're in November is the prime time to do it.
So if shaping your business to align with your core values and your purpose, and they really, really connected to the people that mean the most to you as in being present in the moment with them, if that's on your wishlist for 2022, you can make the first steps for that direction right now. Most people only start planning for the new year in January when the new year has already started.
But I want to invite you to actually start before then, I'm inviting you to start now because there is this amazing, amazing period of time that happens between now and the new year. It's six working weeks. That's where we're at, now is a great time to start to reflect and unwire yourself from all the things that you don't want to carry into 2022.
It's also a great time to perhaps re-imagine your goals and your aspirations that you went into in 2021, that maybe didn't quite happen. What could 2022 look like for you? And start to create not just a vision, but a plan to make that happen. When I really look back on the most chaotic years of my business, I went from one year to the next, like a bat out of hell.
Like there was no pause. There was, there was no reflection. There was no planning, no rest time to recharge at all. I, it was fast and furious from the outside looking in and on the inside living that it was exactly the same. It was fast and furious. It was so far from being present in the moment. And that led to more internal feelings of guilt as a mother.
And I really went down into that path of burnout and it was completely chaotic. And I think it really was because. I didn't pause. I didn't reflect, I didn't really plan. And I certainly didn't rest. And maybe that's where you feel you are right now. If you feel like you're at that point, then you have an amazing opportunity here, right in front of you.
You get to turn that around. You get to do things differently from this point on, which is pretty special. If you're at the starting point of your business Wow. What an exciting time, what an exciting time. I wish I had done more of this kind of thing, more of this sort of stuff, way back at the beginning of my business journey, but that's why I'm here now.
As a business coach is to share my experience and my knowledge to help women in business, avoid that path of burnout and to learn from my failures. Although, you know, calling them failures, let's call them lesson. Because there were always lessons within those failures and they're so valuable to me.
That's part of why I'm here showing up for you in these podcasts. And that's why, you know, I shot each and every week within my coffee and coaching sessions on Facebook and Instagram, every Wednesday is because I'm showing up to help share the lessons that I've learnt along my business journey so that you don't have to make those mistakes.
If I fast forward now to my lifestyle now by best work is done from a place of calm, rather than chaos. Of intention rather than hustle and running on that hamster wheel. And I feel like a major reason for that shift from chaos to calm is because I really take the time to allow myself to form a clear vision for the future of my business.
And then I create a plan and a strategy. And even if the annual strategy becomes a bit of a roller coaster where the zigzags and there's loops and loops and, corkscrews ..Hello COVID I do feel that it's better to be prepared, because then I can pivot and I, and I can adapt where I need to. So I don't want you to think that it's a waste of time and energy and creating an annual strategy.
Even if it doesn't go the way that you planned. You will be better prepared to make decisions, to pivot and adapt where you need to. That, if we wait until January to start this process, the new year's already started, and you're starting that new year without giving yourself the time to step back and take view of what you've experienced over this last 12 months.
And by stepping back in November, you can begin to notice the places where you can make small changes. And those small changes will have big effects on the trajectory of your business and the trajectory of your future. So for the past three or four years, every year, I sit myself down around this time of the year in November, and I allow myself to unpack the year.
I look for the wins. I look for the spaces for improvement. I take the time to really think about the areas of my life that are flourishing and the areas that maybe have been neglected and need some TLC. The work life blend is never going to be the perfect balance. Let me just say that. There will always be ebb and flow, which is why I choose to use the work-life blend rather than work-life balance, because it's never going to be the perfect balance.
My favorite part of all of this is that I get to imagine the future ahead of me. I get to set a vision and then I map out the steps that I need and they become my goal. So over time, I've developed a method for doing this, and I want to share that method with you. So this method that I have, this step-by-step method is essentially a business health check and an overall lifestyle health check.
My method helps to take the things that I have in my head and then paint the picture into a vision. And then I intentionally create boundaries around what I will say yes to. And what I will choose to say no to not only that, I also use a couple of different techniques to take that vision and map it out into a simple,
easy to read one page plan. One of the components or the techniques of that method when I'm envisioning my future year is to take the visions and the goals that are in my head and move it into my body.
Now I know, I know that sounds a little woo woo and yes, I love dancing, but I promise you, it's not, it's not dancing around doing like a dance around a fire
doing a ritual or anything like that. So stick with me. Okay. And what I mean by this is that I'm connecting the vision or the goal to a feeling.
I'm embodying the vision or the goal, and I'm anchoring it to a feeling.
I ask myself, how will I feel when that happens? And I allow myself to really go there and really imagine what that feeling will be like living it as if it is now. And then I wrap words around those feelings and I write those feelings into my one page plan by doing that, two things happen. The first thing is that it allows me to really connect with that goal or that vision to create more drive and more ambition in making that thing happen.
Because I want to experience that feeling in real life. It also helps me to appreciate the work that I get to do. And this is really important because being in business is a long game. It's a marathon. It's not a sprint. And there are times when it feels hard and draining and often it's the biggest goals and visions that feel tough at points along the way, by diving into what it's going to feel like when you're working on those things, the feelings of actually achieving that goal, or actually bringing that vision into reality, knowing what those feelings are.
When the going gets tough. I look at that one page plan and I find those feelings that are listed there. And it reminds me that I know what it's going to feel like when I reach those goals. And it drives me to deal a little bit deeper to recenter myself, to be resilient and have the grit to keep going.
The feeling becomes the reward. It's also appreciating that you get to do amazing things as a business owner, and it's really, really important to tap into those fellings. To feel it in your body, you know, not just have it in your head is so important as a resilience tool as a business owner. So that's number one, that's number one as to why it's so important to bring our vision, our goals, and embodying them and anchoring them to a feeling.
The second reason is that when the feelings you are experiencing are the opposite, of what you had anticipated, you would feel. This is a good check-in point. So if you go to your one page plan and you see that you are experiencing the opposite feelings, so instead of feeling joy as to what you had predicted, you wanted to feel, you're feeling dread, instead of feeling happiness, there's this anger inside you that's bubbling out, instead of feeling light, you're feeling like heavy and perhaps you need to check in and see if your boundaries have been bending. Have you started saying yes to too many things, or have you started saying yes to the wrong things, which maybe been leading you away from your
goals, that you had set for yourself? Maybe that's why there's resentment building up inside of you.
Are you honoring your needs first, your body, your feelings, your in a knowing will tell you if you've gone off on an alternative trajectory, perhaps it wasn't your intention. And you need to bring your focus back to your original goal or your original vision, or if you're on the pathway towards your goal and your vision and your absolutely 100% that you're, you know, you're on that pathway and you're doing the things that you had set out to do.
But you're not feeling like you imagined, perhaps it's an invitation to you to reimagine it. If it's not aligning to your core values and it's bringing up feelings inside of you, that your inner knowing is setting off the alarm bells for you. Maybe it's a challenge. It's a question. It's a opportunity for you to re-imagine whether you still want to go in that direction.
The beauty of being a business owner is that you get to choose, that's part of the freedom when it comes to being in business ownership. If what you imagined, isn't the reality when you get there, you can change that. You can do things differently and shift. The reason I bring this up today is because, this is one of the things that I'll be teaching you in the webinar that I'm hosting in a few weeks time.
This is the method. It's not all woo woo. It's a workshop style webinar, and we're spending one hour together doing a health check on your business and doing a health check on your lifestyle to ensure that that work life blend I was talking about. Is there in the way that you want it to be. I'll be challenging you to think about setting boundaries, outlining the things that you choose to say yes to, and the things that you choose to say no to, and you'll finish with a one page plan that incorporates business family and self care.
It's webinar, it's called Reflect, Recharge and Plan for 2022. And it's part of my November program. Another reason why I love November. And I will be facilitating these online on Thursday, the 25th of November at 10 30. It's going to help you to really unpack 2021 and 2020 and look for the lessons and the challenges.
And to ditch the negativity to set clear attainable goals for 2022. And also by doing this in November, hopefully you'll be able to switch off and you'll enjoy the silly season. You'll be able to be really in the moment with the people who mean the most to you and know that when January rolls around, you're set, you're ready for the new year.
So if building a business by design one that lights you up and brings you added freedom and fills up your cup year after year, sounds like the kind of life that you want, then you're going to, get on board with this webinar. You're gonna want to know the methods that I use to do this. It's a supercharged masterclass and it's designed to really get you on track full success in 2022.
So if you would like to book a seat. You can go to my Instagram bio, the link, is there ready for you? It's also in the show notes, or you can go right now to Donnahann.com/reflect and grab your seat. And if you know someone who would benefit from this, because let's face it, who would it. Please share this episode with them!
Let's spread the word so that as many women in business have a fabulous 2022. Thanks for listening and have a fabulous day. And I'll see you in the webinar in a few weeks time.