Last week for the first time in my business, I went away for a solo business retreat to plan goals for 2020. It was one of the best decisions that I’ve made this year, and I plan to continue to make it a priority. Today, I’m going to share what I set out to do each day, some tools that I used, and a few lightbulb moments that I had along the way.
But first, let me share a quick hot seat moment with you. In January, I was presenting a speaker to a women’s organization that I led. The speaker’s topic focused on critical processes that were needed to have success in your business. I was excited to learn from her, and I casually mentioned that I had not yet set my goals for the year.
Gasp! It was January, quarter one had already started, and I knew that I was not ready. I was in the hot seat, and I’m grateful that I was.
Less than a year later, I knew that it was time to have a business retreat to plan goals.
I’m a planner at heart, and I knew that I wanted to get the most out of every single day of my retreat. Sure, I was away, but this was not a vacation. It was time to focus.
I had three days ahead of working on my business, setting goals for next year, writing, and working on some small projects that I wanted to finish.
Day One. Day one was goal setting day. To get anywhere, you need a plan and a roadmap. Otherwise, you end up somewhere wondering how you got there.
I use many different tools in my business, but my laptop with Trello ready to help me organize things, the prettiest Powersheets Planner, my Focus Planner, this wall calendar, stickers, too many of my favorite pens, post-it notes in every size, and the journal that I’ve scribbled down some big, crazy, scary ideas were some of the tools that I used on my business retreat to plan goals.
The day started at 4:45 am with a cup of tea, some quiet time, writing down affirmations, and then writing about where I wanted to be in 10 years.
As I wrapped up this time, I decided to set 90-minute blocks to work through Day One.
I began with my Powersheets Planner as it has helped me focus, bring more clarity, and set goals with intention.
For the time that I’ve used Powersheets, there has typically been a prompt to think about your life when you’re 80 years old. It’s one of my favorites! This year I loved it even more because the prompt focused on considering what will matter and what won’t matter then.
I didn’t think that I would have a “word of the year” this year, but after working through the thoughtful questions, looking at the goals that I’d set, and visualizing my year, and my mission, the word purpose stood out.
In everything that I do in my business this year, I want to always consider the purpose. As I walk through the year and do hard things like showing up on an Instagram or Facebook Live and no one shows up, or even doing the things that are an established part of my business, I want to always consider the reason it’s done or created and why it exists. (thank you dictionary dot.com)
I want to ask myself these purpose-driven questions.
Who will it serve? Is it serving or will it serve my clients well? What purpose will it serve other women business owners or moms who are running businesses? What purpose will it serve in my life?
After working through my planner and setting my goals, it was time to map out my calendar. I’m so thankful that I came across Shay Cochrane sharing about this calendar in IG stories. Timely!
I love having visuals and being able to see the year at a glance made me do a happy dance. I purchased the calendar here and had it printed at Staples for about 40 dollars.
I mapped out my calendar starting with the most important dates like birthdays, graduations, and family vacation. Then I added booked weddings and personal branding and headshot photoshoots happening at the studio. I also used post-it notes to highlight launches, business strategy sessions, and business retreats.
I know that having this visual in front of me every day will help me to pace myself and business, avoid burnout, and help me think through steps of accomplishing my goals.
I had so many lightbulb moments, and one of them was how much this calendar was going to help me as a mom running a business. I can visually see my busy times, and plan for when I need to add Blue Apron back to our menu. I want to have healthy meals, but when busy seasons hit so do the pizza boxes.
Day Two and Day Three were long days. I set a goal to write all of my blog content for the first quarter. Now my list of what I wanted to do, had about 10 things on it which included adding two pages to my website, but I had to choose the one thing that would make the biggest impact on the day to day in my business.
I set my timer for 45-minute blocks and I got to work.
I finished 11 out of 13, and I’m calling that a WIN!
While I wanted to push through the last two, I did want to have a couple of hours before I left to breathe and envision a great year ahead.
As business owners, we often spend most of our days working in our business and taking blocked off time, and doing that often, to work on our business is hands-down the only way that we’re going to continue to thrive, grow and walk in our roles as leaders.
When it comes to planning and goal setting for your business, what are some things that you would like to learn more about? Leave me a comment below.