Successful business leaders know that holding regular planning sessions and reviewing goals with top management are vital to a vibrant and profitable company. As individuals who make up the management team, it’s important that we each set specific goals, review them in a consistent manner, focus on our skills, and act on opportunities to achieve our goals.
We all want to be consistent in focusing on our goals, but that can be tough when life presents us with unexpected situations. Your boss and clients might ask more of you at work; your children, spouse, and parents need you to be home more often and available to attend important events; you might even feel like you don’t have enough time for yourself to relax, have fun, and plan for the future. Before long, consistency can seem like an unobtainable dream.
Over the past thirty-two years, I have had the pleasure and privilege of growing six profitable companies as large as $100 million in annual revenues, and in that time I’ve learned that the most effective way to maintain consistency and keep goals at the forefront of your thoughts is to set aside thirty minutes each morning before starting your day to hold a meeting with your intuitive self. Yes, you’ll need to set the alarm for this, but hang in there. The rewards will outweigh the temporary disruption in your sleep schedule. In a few days, you’ll even start to wake up before the alarm goes off.
Treat your morning meeting with your intuitive self seriously. Hold your meeting in a space that is free of disruptions, and create an agenda that you’ll follow. Make sure that you also have the necessary tools available: an uplifting book that describes successes of others achieving their goals, a pen, and a notebook for you to write in.
- read as the first item on your meeting agenda
- write as your second step
- speak is the third step on your agenda
- imagine as your fourth step
- act on opportunities and give up obstacles
- forget that fear attracts what you don’t want
- future trip
- treat others unfairly
- have false beliefs
Spend five minutes reading something uplifting to put you in a receptive mood. As you read about the successes of others, your mind will look for ways to make those kinds of successes familiar and normal for you.
Spend up to ten minutes writing a gratitude letter. Be grateful for the good things already in your life, as well as the things that you hope to have soon. Psychologists agree that gratitude and happiness help you to be more focused and able to solve problems. For example, you might say, “I am so grateful for my good health and loving family, and I appreciate our division easily realizing a minimum of $500,000 in sales this month.” Express gratitude for what you have—in this example, health and family—and what you want as though you have already received it—in this case, increased sales at work. The subconscious will then search for ways to help make these goals a reality.
Spend up to five minutes reading your letter out loud with emotion. Studies have shown that when we read something out loud, we anchor it into our subconscious, which will help us to notice more possibilities to make our statements true. As you hear yourself speak the words out loud, you’ll begin to make welcome the good things that are on their way to you.
Spend up to five minutes with your eyes closed imagining what it will be like to have your goals realized. What will you be experiencing, and how will you feel? Who will be celebrating with you? Olympic athletes use this technique as part of their training. They see themselves making the shot, winning the competition, celebrating with teammates and family. If you want to win and achieve your goals, see yourself doing so first.
Throughout the day, be on the lookout for leads as intuition, directions, and opportunities that will point you in the direction of goal attainment. Some of these intuitive leads might not make sense, but as Steve Jobs said, “have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.” Take a step to do something, call someone who comes to mind out of the blue, or follow up on a gut instinct to go to a particular location. I once followed a gut instinct to drive fifteen minutes out of my way in Cleveland and ran into a potential customer who later gave me a new contract worth over $400,000.
When you achieve a goal, acknowledge your success with someone who you value and trust. Celebrating and happiness activate the frontal cortex of your brain, which helps you to see more possibilities and create proof. You’ll enjoy the process of celebrating and will easily recall the steps that you can follow to achieve more of your goals.
Finally, at the end of the day, commit to give up anything that could be preventing you from noticing opportunities and leads. If you are angry, upset, in pain, or feeling any resentment toward another or yourself, you’re creating obstacles that prevent you from noticing intuitive messages. One of the greatest characteristics of successful people is that they release anything that is not consistent with the life they want to live. This can be tough, but it is possible. To start, commit to saying the following each night before bed: “I release anyone and anything from my past or present that is not serving me well, whether I remember them or not. And if there is anything that I have done in my past or present that needs to be released, it is now done and everyone is free.” You don’t have to believe these words, but if you say them for a minimum of thirty nights, you’ll feel lighter and more at peace as a result. You’ll eliminate the obstacles and begin to notice more intuitive leads and opportunities that help you to attain your goals sooner.
There are adverse effects of being panicked and filled with fear. Often, you’ll picture worst-case scenarios which tell your subconscious mind to attract what you’ve pictured. A fearful mind doesn’t allow any room for intuitive leads and intelligent possibilities to show up. Calm the turbulence in your mind and focus on what you want. Your subconscious will help you to attract that instead.
Future tripping is a waste of time. Any time that you spend making a fearful judgement about the future is called future tripping. As you imagine and detail the situations that you don’t want to happen, you’re actually providing fuel to bring them into your life sooner. Stop future tripping. Use your time wisely and create detailed pictures of your goals being realized instead. See and feel the outcome that you want. Then, you’ll begin to notice more opportunities to receive those things into your life.
Treating others unfairly returns the same to you. As you give, you will receive. Whatever you call this universal law, it works. The interesting part of this is that the return of your action doesn’t have to be related to the same event. For example, a friend of mine treated a customer unfairly. Two weeks later, his car broke down and he had to spend more on fixing it than the amount that he unfairly received from the customer. Treat all others the way that you want to be treated and you will experience more of what you want in life.
False beliefs limit your success. We’re a product of our family and society. Accordingly, you may have developed beliefs that don’t serve you, like “I have to work more than anyone else and be away from my family often in order to be successful.” If a strong belief like this is part of your life, then you will find ways to make this your truth. Your family vacations may be interrupted or you may be called to the office on a weekend for an emergency. However, if your goal is to live a balanced life, like being successful and also spending time with your family, then change your belief. Read stories and interviews with other people who you admire, like Mark Vadon of Zulily and Blue Nile, to learn how they balance their lives to spend time with their families and experience great success in business. As you become familiar with their stories and use your daily meeting to outline your goal for balance, you’ll be welcoming it to stay in your life as the new normal.
Complaining to others won’t help you. If you have a problem that needs someone else to get involved to fix it, go to that person for help. Do not complain about that problem to anyone else. This is a huge waste of time and focuses your attention on something that is wrong, something that you don’t want. This also takes precious and productive time away from focusing your attention on what you do want. When appropriate, voice your concern about a problem to the decision maker who can fix it. As a result, everyone may benefit from your action and the problem can get solved sooner.
As you practice the steps for success on a regular daily basis, and avoid the pitfalls of fears, limiting beliefs, and complaining, you’ll begin to enjoy realizing your goals sooner in a more consistent and enjoyable way. All of the abundance, success, and freedom that you desire can be yours as you commitment to focus on what you want with gratitude. You have a limited amount of time – use it wisely so that you can experience more of the good things that you want in your life.