With the first quarter of the year closing, now is an ideal time to reflect on where you stand heading into the second quarter of 2020. Despite the fact that our country is dealing with the Covid-19 crisis, there are still ways that you can sit down and look at where you want your business to go. Also, now is an excellent time to understand the changes you may need to make within your business to handle our current changing environment. Lastly, “now,” is also the perfect time to try and bring some structure and certainty into our lives with all that is uncertain. One of the best ways to accomplish all this is by analyzing your recent performance against your goals and objectives.
Hopefully you started the new year (and new decade) with some written goals and objectives, and maybe even a map on how to get closer to your dreams. While the second quarter of 2020 currently poses a new set of challenges for business owners, you can still plan to not only achieve your dreams and goals, but also discover ways to help your community during the Covid-19 pandemic.
There is nothing that can’t be achieved with the right mindset and discipline. For me, my personal dream is to be a leader in preventing the unnecessary cruelty and slaughter of retired and injured racehorses coming off the racetrack. In order to achieve this dream, I must have goals and objectives and be consistently measuring my results against them and revising the plan as needed.
Let’s assume for a moment that you have gone through the process of laying out your goals and objectives and have outlined a road map. In order to make progress and ultimately reach your goals, you need to constantly review and analyze your growth.
- Break down your annual goals and objectives into quarters. Next, break down each quarter into monthly goals. By doing so you can create a manageable system of steps that will help propel you toward your larger goals—one week at a time.
- Every Sunday I map out a plan for my week based on everything that is going on in my life—from mundane chores, such as paying bills and making some much needed phone calls, to deadlines for my clients and actions I need to take to move me closer to reaching my goals and dreams. This may sound tedious, boring, or rigid, but it’s the only way to transition your goals and dreams into accessible realities. Leave the spontaneous and unknown for your recreational time - not for trying to make your dreams come true. During this weekly planning process, I also reflect on the prior week’s outcome and ask myself the following questions:
- What did I do well? What did I accomplish? What were my wins?
- Where did I fall short? Why? Was it just “life” or was there something that I could have done better? Perhaps I didn’t manage my time well or got caught up in something that wasn’t really necessary or meaningful. What can I improve on?
I always like to do a formal review of each quarter and take stock of where I am and adjust as necessary—because as we all now know all too well, life happens, and things don’t always go as planned. Early March is the perfect time to really look at where you are and see what you can drive over the finish line before the quarter’s end. Ending the first quarter of the year with success can really help drive momentum for the year ahead. If you haven’t stayed on top of your results throughout the quarter, now is still the perfect time to assess and review your results and prepare for the second quarter!
As important as it is to stay on top of your business, it is even more critical to take care of yourself - especially as we navigate the second quarter of 2020 and make adjustments for the Covid-19 situation. Now more than ever, it’s important to remain flexible and take care of yourself when you need it most. Making sure that you are taking time for your mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being and also being there for the ones you love. Wherever you are in the process of adjusting, take time that you need. For me currently, I am more successful in my day when I stay in a routine as much as possible, meet my client deadlines, give my body the rest it asks for, and maintain an exercise program. It is also extremely helpful for me to journal about what I’m feeling, my fears and concerns and my hopes and dreams. I’ve learned from others the value of putting pen to paper – and the power of writing down things for which you are thankful!
I did not meet all my Q1 quarterly goals because life threw some other curve balls earlier in the year, but I am prepared to adjust in the months ahead. By having a plan and a positive outlook, these unpredictable events became manageable. Life will always happen and it’s important to allow yourself the time you need to sort through the impacts of any unexpected events. Presently, we’re all trying to make adjustments to help our community, our country, and the world get through the pandemic. Without a doubt, times are more stressful than usual this year. Give yourself time to reflect on any emotions that may be involved with handling stress, and the physical impacts of those emotions. When you’re ready, proceed boldly toward your dreams and the goals you have set to reach those dreams. All we have is today and it’s the best day to start living your best life.
May you stay safe, healthy and find some peace in the turbulent waters we are all navigating.