Today’s guest post is by the lovely Karen Gunton. Karen is a teacher, brainstormer and visual content creator. Her passion is helping women in biz get unstuck and shine, in their own awesome way.
As you know, I very rarely accept guest posts, but each year I like to invite some gorgeous, passionate, inspiring women to share their new year dreams, goals + miracles.
The more we hear of women dreaming big dreams and making them happen, the more it will become the “new normal” and fuel us to do just the same.
Introducing dear Karen!
I’m going to admit a little secret: even though I have been building a business in one form or another for 6 years, last year was the first year I ever did any sort of planning.
I always abhorred the idea of a business plan – anything I’d ever read about planning either bored me to tears or overwhelmed me to the point of inaction. So I never did a “proper” plan. Sure I had a notebook full of ideas, but that was it.
And then last year in discovered Leonie’s Amazing Biz + Life Workbooks. It wasn’t the idea of planning that appealed to me (I was still resisting the very notion) but I was drawn to how pretty and creative they are. So I grabbed the workbooks, made a date with my biz, and that was the start of a new and awesome journey for me.
As the year progressed I played with a variety of methods for turning those dreams I wrote about in my 2013 workbook into action steps and plans that I could accomplish.
And this is what I learned:
Your plans are as individual as you are, and as your business is. There is no one right way to do planning, there is just YOUR way.
Once I released all of those “shoulds” and “rules” that I had in my mind around planning I was able to find my right way, and it was so worth it! Not only did my dreams all come true but I felt more organized, I felt like in had a purpose, I earned more money, and I accomplished more than I ever had before.
I transformed from someone terrified of business planning into someone who gets giddy about biz planning!
This is what my planning process looks like now:
STEP ONE: I start with Leonie’s workbook. I LOVE the reflection on the previous year; it is one of my very favourite things to do in my biz… in fact in think in am going to start doing monthly reflections! And I love the guidance the workbook offers in setting goals for the new year. So awesome.
STEP TWO: I then choose a few words to represent my vision for the year. I generally have a number of goals on the go so I find that my vision words just help me to stay focussed every day on my path.
STEP THREE: I then take my goals and start working out my year, month and week plans. I created some printable planners to help me with this – I love having the bright colours up on the wall next to my desk, and I like to do everything in pencil because it is a work in progress.
STEP FOUR: And then I start creating plans for each individual project – I love to brainstorm and then map out my ideas – breaking stuff up into daily chunks that I know in can accomplish. This year in am keeping all of my ideas in a big binder – so in have everything handy in one place (no more searching through notes and scraps of paper! Yay!)
This is what is working for me – though I am sure it will continue to evolve!
Let go of the “rules!”
I encourage you to let go of whatever “rules” you have in mind about what planning needs to look like and how it must get done. Grab whatever tools appeal to you (I highly recommend Leonie’s workbooks!) and just get started. One of my favourite mantras is JFDI (Just Fucking Do It) – so make 2014 the year you JFDI!
Just remember this: Your biz. Your plans. Your way.
Such perfect wisdom Karen.
And that’s totally me too – I didn’t do any business planning until these workbooks came to me!
And holy dinger… how grateful I am that they did!
Planning can be totally magical and unique.
May all of us be inspired to put our dreams into action and change the world.
All my love,