Do you have mountains to climb in your business and personal life?
So what are your business mountains this year? What do you need to face up to, to get your business to be where you would really like it to be – a good result, not just an ok result, but a really good result for your business? Do you know the answer to that question that by the way? Have you actually done that work? Have you got a Business Plan that really ties in what you want to achieve in the by the end of 2016? Not many people do this by the way! So how will you know whether you have? If you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it.
What about your personal goals and objectives – where would you like to be by the end of the year? What would you like to be doing? Is there a lifestyle shift you would like to make? Are there certain things you would like to do; places you would like to visit; things you would like to do by way of personal development? Have you even thought about it? Do you set up personal goals for your next 12 months?
I asked this question to a small group I was working with recently, and there were a couple of people umming and aahing about it (which means no by the way), and a couple of people that actually had. That was, ratio-wise, about right – because about 2% of the population actively set goals for themselves for the next 12 months – most people just hope it’s going to be ok! Most people spend more time planning their annual holiday than they do planning the rest of their lives. They then set off on the journey of the next 12 months, look back a year later, and wonder what happened.
And, what about your health? How are you doing with that? Are you happy with it? If not, what are you going to do about it? I was at a party recently, and I was in the kitchen chatting with a man, I kind of know, who had just been to see the Doctor. The Doctor had read him the riot act about his cholesterol level, blood pressure, etc. – and to illustrate the point, the Doctor printed out a chart which had happy faces and grim faces on it. He had 10% grim faces on his little chart, and the Doctor said: “You have got a 10% chance of having a major heart attack or coronary incident unless you do something about it”. He kind of laughed about it in a slightly awkward way and said: “Yeah, but I’ll be alright, won’t I?”
Well, having had a heart attack, it’s not something I’d recommend, and it’s not something I would want to risk, now knowing what I know. But that’s easy for me to say because I’ve been there. He was standing there thinking, “Well, it won’t happen to me”. He was living his life as an immortal, and a lot of people live their lives as immortals. People often say “Seize the day, Carpe Diem; we must do this”. But how many people actively do something about it? They live their lives as if “There’s always tomorrow, there’s always next week, next year, the year afterwards – we will set this up and do it sometime soon”. But people don’t set themselves goals and objectives, because they view themselves as being immortal. But you and I are not immortal. It could all be over like that, in a flash, like someone turning off a light switch.
So, do your business and personal goals depend on your health? Because if you think about it, your health does influence all areas of your life, including both your business and personal goals. If you don’t look after your health, all those things you are thinking about or planning on doing could never come to pass – you may never be able to do them.
SO WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES?
So, climbing mountains – whether they are personal mountains, business mountains, or mountains with your health. What are the challenges? What’s going to stop you? What’s potentially going to get in the way?
Well, your physical fitness first and foremost is what is going to influence your ability to get things done. But this is very closely followed by your mental fitness.
Your beliefs influence your actions– is what you are setting out to do even possible? Do you think you can do it? Henry Ford’s oft-quoted “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you are probably right” has been used so many times because it is so true – belief is a very big part of what will allow you to take action and make you do something.
Beliefs are influenced by your fears: fear of the unknown, fear of the not happened yet. People worry about things before they happen. Are you a natural worrier? Do you angst and fret about things before they happen? Do you think you should? Think about this, what if I said, “ if you worry about things before they happen, it will influence the way you approach things.” You are also more likely to get the result you think about because you are focussing on it.
How about trying to enjoy an event before it happens? Would the shift in focus be more likely to give you a better outcome? Let me ask you this. Do you hold on to a compliment longer than a criticism? Not many people do. Most people hold onto a criticism a lot longer than a compliment. We have that tendency – and it’s all about beliefs, “am I worth it?” – and your fears, which are quite often unfounded.
Not only do you have to fight the civil war in your head with your own beliefs, but you also have to contend with the Naysayers. Naysayers tell you: “No, you can’t do that! Walk up mountains? Double the size of your business? Move to a different town,? Change career?” I was talking to someone recently, and he told me “One of my mains goals for the year is to start turning my annual income into my monthly income”. That’s a big goal – possible to do? Yes, absolutely, I’ve seen people do it. But there would be a lot of people going “oooh, you think so? Who do you think you are?”
And as if having negative people around us isn’t enough, we then invite the Naysayers into our house via our TV and Radio.
The media!! They are starting to talk about another recession now, more austerity measures. You know what? We could have one simply because ‘they’ are starting to put it in the media. It will happen – for certain people
HOW DO YOU MAKE THE CLIMB?
So how can you help yourself, and develop a set of positive actions? The first thing I suggest you do, if you haven’t already done it, and you may need to spend some time on this, is to develop what I call your “WHY” – Why do you want to climb that particular mountain? What is it going to do for you? How is it going to help you? Because if you haven’t got a reason, and a really deeply felt connection with what you are trying to do, how much action do you think you will take? None! You just won’t do it without a deep-felt reason for doing it.
The brain is a very interesting thing because it is spread through your body. You have actually got 3 major lumps of brain cells – you have obviously got the big one between your ears; you have got a cluster of around 50-60,000 brains cells which sit right on top of your heart, and you’ve got another clump in the solar plexus; plus lots of little bits dotted around the body too. But when you feel something emotionally, do you feel it in the heart area, or do you feel it in the head? That’s right you always feel it in the chest, and that is because your heart brain is telling you either “That was a good event” or “That was a bad event”, and feel it right in the middle of your chest, don’t you? You also get that gut feeling. So you do have more than one controlling area which will influence the way you think and feel. Develop your “Why” – make a connection.
Break down your 168 – this is really important if you are going to move yourself forwards and get yourself to the mountain and start climbing it. Your 168 represents your hours in one week – that is your total allocation each week of your life. You do get two short weeks – the one when you were born and the other one!! Yes, you are going to get a short week, I am sorry if I am the first person to tell you that, but it is going to happen to you at some point. You are going to get part way through the week and realise that’s it then!! The actor John Le Mesurier was quoted as having said during his last moments “It’s all been rather splendid really”. What a great death-bed quote – I would like to be able to look back and say that when I go!
The questions to ask yourself to start breaking down your 168 hours are first of all: What are you currently doing? Take out the must-dos like sleeping, eating, washing, commuting. Then look at what you are spending the rest of your 168 hours on? What is actually working, what’s helping you? And crucially, what do you need to stop doing? There will be things that you do (and I do) that we know we need to stop doing because they are not serving us. They are getting in the way of us achieving what we want to achieve.
When I coach businesses owners, I quite often talk about not watching the soap operas, because if you want to build yourself a business, you could spend that time doing other things. I have a friend who says, “We never, ever pair up socks; we have a big basket in a corner of one of the rooms, and it is just full of black socks. If you want black socks, just go and find a pair – pick up two, they are all the same really!” There is stuff you can do, but there is also stuff that is really task avoidance activity! So what should you actually stop doing? What are you doing and what’s working? You need to know those things. Spend some time on it. Get a piece of paper and write things down, and be honest with yourself. You are only fooling yourself if you fudge it.
And then…. Dump the complacency! The clock is ticking, and who knows how long for.
A FINAL THOUGHT:
“The clock ticks, the day breaks, the heart beats, the lungs breathe, the opportunity comes, the fear surfaces, the excuses are built, the chance passes. And still the clock ticks…………. The End, unless you choose otherwise.
The clock is ticking… it’s up to you.