Running a business is full of responsibilities and obligations, and it can be easy to lose control of how you spend your time. But how you spend your time determines the success of your business.
If you feel like you aren’t doing what you want to be doing in your business or soul-centered project, chances are good that your priorities do not match how you spend your actual time.
And, if you’re not spending your business time according to your priorities, chances are good that you’ll feel stressed, dissatisfied, tired or disappointed with your work life.
For example, if you highly value developing your network of colleagues, but instead focus a lot of energy and time on operational details, then you are likely feeling harried and disconnected from like-minded practitioners. Or, if your biggest desire is to grow your business, but your time is actually spent running errands and doing paperwork, unfortunately, your life won’t magically open up more time for marketing your business.
You need to prioritize what’s most important & then set the intention to make it happen.
Align your business with your priorities and your values:
1) Clarify What’s Important
Make a list of everything in your business or project that is important to you. This can include expanding your prospect list, developing new programs or offerings, marketing, cultivating referrals, etc. Get specific with this list. For example, instead of simply listing "networking”, perhaps list particular individuals or groups of colleagues who are important to your business.
2) Rank What’s Important
Order your list in number of importance to you. This is now your priority list.
3) Identify Your Top Three
Now, take a look at the top three items on your list. Star them. Ask yourself: Are these really my top priorities in life, or are some of these items "shoulds" or "obligations"? If there are any shoulds or obligations, re-prioritize so that your top three really connect with you on a heart/soul level. Some questions to ask yourself are:
- Am I excited about this item?
- How do I feel when I devote time to this item?
- Is there anything I would rather do than this item?
4) How Do You Really Spend Your Time?
Is the majority of your actual time devoted to the top three things on your list? If yes, wonderful! If not – what are you spending your time doing instead? If that’s not a top priority item: why are you spending your time on it? Do you actually need to be spending time on it, or is it simply a distraction? Can it be delegated?
This 4-step process will help you get clarity on how you want to spend your time versus how you actually do spend your time. It will also help you uncover what’s important and why you spend time on things that are not priorities.
Once you do that, then you can move on to the next level, which is to create a detailed plan of how those priorities will play out week by week in your schedule.