Most women are general doers. We carry around our invisible cape and get stuff done. It’s hard to explain but the bottom line is if it needs to be done for our family we will accomplish it!
As a business coach, this is one of the biggest challenges my client have which is if I can run a family and get stuff done for everyone else why is it that I have such a hard time doing things for my business?
My answer to that question for a lot of women is planning. Now of course this is not the be-all answer for everyone because each person lives a different lifestyle. So let me explain why I feel planning is the key for most women.
Why is planning important for a woman entrepreneur?
With anything you set out to do in life, it's a good idea to have a plan. It can help clarify your goals, helps keep you focused, and possibly foresee problems in the future.
Planning is preparing a sequence of action steps to achieve specific tasks to reach your goals. And if done effectively and consistently it can reduce the necessary time and effort to achieving your goals.
A plan is like a map that helps you to stay on the right road and avoid as many detours and dead ends.
The most fundamental objective of planning is to become aware of the things that take you off track and create a better pattern of resources that will help you stay focused and productive.
To even start becoming aware we must first commit to starting planning daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly. I know it sounds like a whole lot of effort, especially if you are not a regular planner like me but my personal and professional productivity and success is a direct result of planning consistently.
I believe in planning so much that I even created my own 10 Point Productivity system but more on that later.
Here are some ways you might be currently planning or ways you could be planning.
· To-do lists
· Check off lists
· Brain dumps
· Paper planners
· Electronic planners
I currently use the Happy Planner and have been using one for a couple of years now. I love the flexibility I have with the planner where I can remove pages, add pages, add dividers, and change the format of it.
In addition to it, I also use my 10 Point Productivity System.
I often recommend to my clients getting a paper planner because you can alter it, you can brand it, you can have fun with it by adding stickers and fun quotes that will keep you getting into your planner much more than normal.
But it takes commitment and it must become part of your daily routine.
I am in my planner every day. Every morning, throughout the day, in the evening, and on the weekends. If it’s not in my planner, guess what, it’s not happening!
I know what you are probably thinking, what if I lose it? Well, the chances of that are slim because I am in it all the time and it is part of me, and it’s a routine.
But I do add my appointments to google calendar because I have an online calendar for coaching clients to schedule appointments or consultation calls.
I also work from home so the chances of me accidentally leaving it somewhere it slim plus these days there are fewer places I am visiting.
Now if you are someone who buys a planner each year and jumps ship to another planner three month later because you fail to be in it. I hate to break it to you but it’s not the planner, it’s you. Let’s look at the common barriers that stop you from moving forward with planning.
Identifying Barriers When It Comes to Planning
· Not allowing yourself to dream big
· Not getting excited about your goals or your future
· Not getting clear on what your message is and what you are selling
· Not knowing who your ideal client is
· Inadequate planning
· Lack of commitment
· Focusing on the now and ignoring the future
· Allowing “life” to get in the way
· Using excuses to stay inside your comfort zone
What is the most important part of planning?
Systems, procedures, and routines are some of the most important components of planning. They describe exactly what needs to get done.
What are the Basic Features of a Good Plan?
Define Specific Goals in your life wheel (Business/Work, Personal, Finances, Spirituality, Health, Home, Relationships)
Create specific dates on when you what to accomplish your goals
Determine what tasks you need to complete to achieve the specific goal
Create a daily action plan
Follow the plan daily
Tweak when necessary
Rinse and repeat
I think this would be a good time to introduce you to my 10 Point Productivity System. Very simple…it’s broken down like this:
3, 3, 3, 1.
Top 3 things you MUST get done today
Top 3 Marketing tasks (if you own a business you should be marketing daily) You must be planting the seeds to harvest in the future.
Top 3 Self Care tasks (you know that saying, “You can’t pour from an empty cup” so make yourself a priority.
1 – that one thing that is on your project list which is a big goal (create a website, write a book, create a new program, etc.) but on your project list you will break things down into manageable tasks and you will take one of those tasks and add it to your list.
Keep doing it until it’s done.
This system has helped me to write a business book, write a children’s book, co-author 5 books, create several successful businesses, speak at conferences, develop content and the list goes on and on.
Life is short. You can have a life you love on your terms. The choice is yours.
Now go plan!
Doreen Dilger, Founder of Women Empowering Women Now
Doreen Dilger, Certified Business Coach, Author, Artist and Founder of Women Empowering Women Now.