Recapping the year so far and feeling confident for what’s to come.
Updated: Mar 23
It’s been a short while since I have tapped on the keyboard to blog and now that we are almost a quarter of the way through this seemingly still new year strikes me as a good time to assess, evaluate and look forward.
I started this year like many, I imagine, with a 50/50 mix of hope and fear of what was to land at my door. As someone who set up my business relatively recently, after launching just before the first lockdown, it was always going to be a little challenging. That said everyone I know has been hit hard by the weirdness that has been the last year, so I left myself open to a state of ‘what will be, will be’ in an endeavour to stress relieve as much as possible.
I rarely make solid new year resolutions as, frankly, experience tells me I just don’t keep them; but I did make a commitment to myself over a dry January cuppa to:
- get dressed for work every day even if I am seeing no one work related - wear perfume every day for reasons as above - take action to build my business instead of talking about taking action - go with the flow more and not set unreasonable / unachievable targets - celebrate small wins.
Not the longest list to stick to, nor the most difficult to achieve, but it struck me today, whilst faffing around trying to avoid writing this blog, that I have actually pretty much stuck to that commitment. This is nothing short of astonishing as it hasn’t actually felt like I have actively been trying to do that.
And maybe that’s the thing for me. I remember vividly my last session of training at Animas in London when we were imagining what our coaching business would look like a year down the line, five years down the line, etc. Ha! That’s before we were all blown sideways by a pandemic and normal life was a thing of the past. Safe to say all those imaginings have yet to become reality, but, reality is what I focussed on when making my commitment in the new year.
Don't make it unrealistic and unachievable - that's a confidence killer right there
We are always told to live in the here and now and making projections at the start of this year meant assessing what this new reality could bring. I felt very confident not to put too much pressure on myself to have an unrealistic number of new clients or monthly income; I don’t want to feel like I am failing every day, that’s too destructive on too many levels. So, I chose not to focus on those numbers.
Basically, I really wanted to concentrate on what would get me in the right mindset for work on an ongoing basis. It had been too easy to blame the lockdown or restrictions on being a bit lazy, when I knew I was just using that as an excuse to not move forwards and make gains. But sometimes you have to work through that sticky patch to realise you owe it to yourself and your skill to get going at your optimum pace again. I decided that I should focus on getting ready for work even when I wasn’t actually working. Actually getting dressed in clothes that aren’t ‘sloppies’ and putting perfume on is a surprisingly easy way to feel like you might want to achieve something today.
And then there is always work to do when there is no actual work that day (coaching sessions). There are books to read, information to research and digest, workshops to attend and networking to get involved in that is also work, even if it doesn’t directly help to pay the bills.
I am an avid list writer and I just know I get more done when there is a list to tick off. I write a shopping list most weeks and a home to do list when there are more than a couple of things to remember, so writing a work list should come naturally, but turns out is something I hadn’t been doing until the start of this year. I started to write a weekly to do list instead of a daily one and made sure it wasn’t overloaded or unachievable and that it included stuff that was fun.
Celebrating the small wins is a confidence booster
Some of the things I got involved with are mentioned below. I researched what was local, seemed of interest and could give me something to add to my tool kit, whether that be new connections or valuable takeaway tips and advice from networking (https://theathenanetwork.com) or online meet ups (https://www.thethriveeffect.co.uk). I also checked out some relevant, inspiring and energetic people who were offering help (for free) to grow your business and social media voice (https://juliecreffield.com) and I have to say I am proud that I had the confidence to get involved in all the tasks and delighted to have gained some invaluable information.
It’s a delightful buzz you get from crossing things off the list and no one is more gobsmacked than me, as we reach the end of March, that I have managed to stick to what I committed to do in early January. These small wins have been mainly celebrated with vodka from 1 February onwards…
Sure, I could have done more, but what I have achieved work wise feels like enough for me at the start of a tricky year. I have continued to serve existing clients and gained some lovely new ones. I have also been volunteering and ensured that every day has included some physical exercise and some valuable and enjoyable down time.
It has been tough at times finding the positives during a winter lockdown, while is has seemed so often dark and dull, and when the number of months is growing from when you last saw loved ones and friends. It has, however, been a few months that I can look back on with some real satisfaction. Stuff was achieved and I go into the next phase of the year feeling positive and confident of even better things to come.
Hoping that your year has started well and is bringing good things to you in whatever form you need them. But, if you feel like you are blocked and not moving towards your goals, get in touch and I can help you progress with confidence into the next few months of 2021.