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How Planning And Routine Can Seriously Have An Impact On The Success Of Your Business

Michelle Dale - Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Generally I am somebody who has always been fairly self-disciplined when it comes to my work, so making the leap to going self employed was a bit like jumping into a black hole not knowing what was at the bottom, but the unknown was more a case of, “how far will I take this” as opposed to “will this go anywhere.”

As it turned out I found that there was one really key element to self-employment success, and that was  sticking to some sort of routine, basically when I set out to do something, I plough on and on, daily, weekly, monthly until I actually get there, and get it right, now that’s not to say I always get it right first time, but if I don’t, I get back on the horse and I keep going.

How It’s Done…

I set myself a goal and a target date, and I then write everything I can think of at the time that I need to do to practically to meet that goal, on time. I do always try to keep within realistic time frames, but I do bring the target completion date forward often, which allows me to push myself that little bit harder.

I then prepare myself mentally, I think about the reasons why I want to achieve it, what the end result could mean for me, and those around me, and if it’s really worth the effort. Once I have done this, and my head is straight, I have my motivations, and I am ready to go, I take a break, a day off, and I go and do something I really enjoy doing, I try not to think about work, and then the next day I begin with a solid routine, following through on making my goal a reality.

Most of us have routines, some more than others, especially if you have kids and/or pets, and your steps towards achieving success can be placed into a routine, by setting certain times of the day or hours per week to working through those things that you need to do in order to achieve your goal.

Don’t Overwhelm Yourself…

Recently I have been working with other virtual assistants helping them set up and improve their online businesses, I have noticed how well some people can get into their routine and simply plough on towards achieving their goal and the end result, and how some people get overwhelmed by the bigger picture.

The most important thing you can do to prevent this state of overwhelm is to always focus on the current and next stages and steps, because that is all you are able to do. If you worry about stages which are much further down the line, this will slow you down considerably, because the tasks that need to be done in hand, will be coming in behind the worry and concern of whether you are actually going to meet the deadline and achieve the goal in the first place.

The trick is to break everything down into something that can be a part of a routine, project A, tasks 1, 2, and 3 need to be done today, so make sure you do them, and don’t leave your workspace or computer until they are done. This is essential to progress, and it may mean you have to stay up late, get up early, skip a social event, miss your favourite TV shows, but it all boils down to this, do you really want to achieve your goal or not?

If you have written out on a schedule your goal, what you need to do to achieve it, the time it takes realistically to do that, everything you need to do, and when you are going to do it, plus included a contingency if things don’t go according to plan, then there are no excuses, you have to maintain your end of the bargain to meet the goal, or the goal is simply not worth setting or even starting…

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Hi I'm Michelle, an entrepreneur specialising in virtual assistance, a digital and real world nomad, and a down-to-earth mother of three.

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