My Latest Fave Soul-Inspired Books to Uplevel Your Biz and Life

I’ve been really enjoying taking a fair amount of time off this month to vacation with my husband and son, visit family in Texas, take a solo retreat, and relax and do whatever I’m inspired to do in the moment.

One of my favorite ways to relax and reconnect is through reading. Books inspire me to no end!

Now, I love a great novel now and then, and I’m inspired to share with you a handful of books that are focused on my passions of personal, spiritual and business development–and it just so happens they’re all written by women!

Here are 7 books I highly recommend to uplevel your business and life. I hope you discover one or two or more that speak to you.

Women Who Run with the Wolves, Clarissa Pinkola-Estes, PhD
This landmark book was given to me as a birthday gift from my yoga teacher 15 years ago, and it literally sat on my shelf all those years. A few months ago, I was inspired to pick it up, and holy moly!

What a phenomenal, timely message this book gives to women today: “Within every woman there is a wild and natural creature, a powerful force, filled with good instincts, passionate creativity, and ageless knowing…” Amen, sister. The Wild Woman lives!

The Magic Path of Intuition, Florence Scovel Shinn
Ms. Shinn rocks! A voice of practical, spiritual wisdom from the 1920s who gives you high-vibe affirmations to cultivate your intuition, believe in your Divine power, and release the resistance, fear and doubt once and for all. As Florence says, “You must live fully in the now to make your dreams come true.” She is all about living a spiritual and rich life. Me, too!

P*ssyA Reclamation, Regena Thomashauer
I love, love, love this book! It was seriously edgy for me to say and share about this book when I first bought it. But I trusted my intuition and started recommending to select clients, friends and Mastermind partners—who all loved it, too. It’s another landmark book for women and a clarion call to bring more pleasure into your business and life. Highly recommended!

Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert 
Permission. This book in her wonderfully witty and warm way gives me a lot of permission to be free—to try, to fail, to fall down, to succeed, to soar, to whatever, and not be concerned with the outcome. The magic is in persisting; in staying committed to my craft as an entrepreneur; to keep going with putting my “art” (which for me is my voice and my business offerings) out there in small and big ways, no matter what.

Presence, Amy Cuddy
The essence of this book and Amy’s uber-popular TED talk is that we can use our bodies—through “power poses”—to help us feel confident and present, especially when faced with a stressful or intimidating situation.

By getting our bodies in motion and taking on powerful postures, we literally change our brain chemistry—lowering cortisol (the stress hormone) and increasing testosterone and good-feeling hormones. I love “power posing” before speaking in front of groups and highly recommend it to all my clients and workshop participants.

From Worry to Wealthy: A Woman’s Guide to Financial Success Without the Stress, Chellie Campbell
I just started reading this one last week on the airplane to Dallas, and I really appreciate Chellie’s highly practical business and money wisdom shared in her down-to-earth style. I met Chellie last year when she spoke at my favorite women’s networking group, and she’s super fun and funny, and gives practical steps to creating financial success. I adore her money affirmations. My fave: People love to give me money!

Powerful and Feminine, Rachael Jayne Groover
This is my newest book. I literally got it in the mail yesterday (!), but I’m including it here because I heard Rachael Jayne speak earlier this month and LOVE her message. So much so that I signed up for one of her Art of Feminine Presence workshops in September. Excited to read this book on increasing my magnetic presence and being authentically powerful!

So, that’s it. The Magic 7.

Which one resonates the most for you? I’d love to hear! Comment below and let me know your thoughts, and share your soul-inspired book recommendations with me.

3 Easy Ways to Get Out of Overwhelm in Your Business

3 Easy Ways to Get Out of Overwhelm in Your Business

Here’s what I hear a lot of these days from my clients and other entrepreneurs in my community:

I’m so overwhelmed! There’s so much I need to do — and should to — to grow my business. I feel like I’m spinning my wheels and not getting anywhere. How do I focus and prioritize? Help! Something has to change.

Can you relate?

I definitely go through waves of feeling overwhelmed in my business and other parts of my life, especially when family demands or a crisis call out for my attention.

When you’re in overwhelm, it most likely means you have too much on your plate or the wrong things on your plate, you’re spending too much time on non-revenue-generating activities, or you’re not reaching out for support in the ways you need to.

As Abraham says “You’re never going to get it all done, so what are you racing toward?

Here’s a quick 3-question exercise to get you out of overwhelm and restore your focus on the things that really matter in your business, which I believe are revenue-generating activities that light you up so you can continue to make the difference you’re here to make!

Before you start, take a slow deep mindful breath.

1) What’s one activity you can give up or let go of?

2) Where’s one place you can say “no”?

3) Where’s one place you can clear up clutter?

Invest the 5 minutes now to honestly answer these questions, and let me know how it goes.

I just did this exercise and quickly deleted 4 things from my “to do” list and said “no” to a networking event tonight. I also committed to clearing the clutter of my desk by the end of this week. Now, your turn!

Affirm: I let go of overwhelm and practice saying “enlightened no’s” to people, situations, and opportunities that do not serve me at this time. Each moment of my workday solely exists to bring me joy. I remember to lighten up, laugh more and appreciate more. All is well.

Happy spring cleaning your business!​

Fall in love with your marketing

How to Fall in Love With Your Marketing

What does LOVE have to do with marketing your business?

Everything, I believe.

Because if you’re doing marketing begrudgingly, skipping over key marketing channels, not doing enough marketing, or avoiding promoting yourself altogether, then you’re missing out on serving your clients with your gifts and growing your business to the next level!

So, with the eyes of love, let’s take a look at your marketing and see how you can fall in love with this essential building block to making a big income and an even bigger impact!

1) Start with a mindset shift: see marketing as an act of service.

You might think of marketing as being icky, hard and a necessary evil that you HAVE to do, or do very little of it so that you don’t come across as salesy or overly-promoting yourself.

The truth is: when you come from generosity–educating with tips and resources and letting your audience know how they can take it further with you–marketing is an act of service.

The key is to share freely your inspiring tips, strategies and offer–without attachment to someone saying “yes” or buying from you.

Say to yourself the next time you go to call your next prospective client, write a blog article, promote your next event on social media, or create a video: This is an act of service. I’m passionately committed to what I offer, and I’m not attached to whether they say “yes” or “no.”

2) Simplify your marketing.

So many entrepreneurs I talk to are overwhelmed with ALL the ways you can market your business.

We hear the expert calls: LinkedIn! Facebook Ads! Speaking! Webinars! SEO! Referral-based marketing! Networking! Joint Ventures!

The truth is there’s no RIGHT way to market your business.

All of these strategies work in various degrees, depending on your personality, your target market, your business type, and what stage of growth you’re in.

So to not fall into the overwhelm-trap, discover what are the 1-3 ways you LOVE to market your business.

What feels light and natural to you? Is it speaking and networking? Is it social media and online marketing? Or some other combination?

Then, FOCUS on mastering these 1-3 areas FIRST before you move on to the next strategy.

Bonus Tip: Be sure to get support for the marketing strategies you want to master. Don’t go into avoidance just because you don’t know HOW to do something.

For example, I recently realized I had been avoiding important aspects of social media as a way to grow my business. I had the perfect excuse of “not having enough time.” Now, I’ve made a decision to get support in this area. What a relief that I don’t have to know HOW or figure it all out on my own!

3) Start a Daily Marketing Love practice.

Most entrepreneurs I meet don’t do nearly enough marketing in their business.

If you tend to full into that category or want to up your game, I recommend a Daily Marketing Love practice.

Start with scheduling at least 30 minutes in your calendar everyday for taking inspired marketing action. Go ahead and block this time out in your calendar right now.

Then, set a timer for 30 minutes to keep you on track and distraction-free. If your mind or your fingers start to do other things (like how many times do you lose track of time on social media? I’m totally busted on that one!), remind yourself to come back and focus on your marketing.

Use this time to connect. Make calls to prospective/former/current clients, follow up with emails, and reach out to group leaders to inquire about speaking opportunities. Or connect with your online audience, whether that’s creating your new online course or webinar.

Happy marketing… with love!

XOXO,
Rebecca

P.S. If you’re looking for marketing support (plus, judgment-free kick-in-the-pants) to grow your income and impact this year, I’d love to talk to you. Just click here, and we can set up a no-pressure chat to see if we’re a fit to work together.

Where to Find Speaking Gigs

Where to Find Speaking Gigs to Grow Your List and Attract Your Dream Clients

More and more heart-centered entrepreneurs like you are using speaking as a way to grow your list and attract new clients. Which is great!

The problem is… where to find those places to speak?

Before sharing a few ideas to get you started, let’s start with your mindset.

You may be thinking there aren’t very many opportunities in your local area to speak or that it’s too hard to find those places.

Maybe you’ve put a few “feelers” out already, but haven’t gotten the response you expected, so you’re feeling disappointed and frustrated and have stopped putting energy in that direction.

Or maybe you’re just not feeling “ready” to speak: your signature talk isn’t put together; you don’t have clarity on your ideal audience; or you don’t have a proven strategy on how speaking can help you bring in new clients.

(If you need help with these things, check out my SPEAK, SHINE, SELL 1-Day Workshop here.)

Whatever may be holding you back from booking yourself to speak, let’s start by simply getting you in the highest vibration to attract those perfect speaking opportunities!

Here are a few affirmations to support those high vibes:

  • There are infinite possibilities and places for me to speak.
  • I easily attract the perfect speaking opportunities.
  • I’m prepared and take action toward the wonderful speaking opportunities that are abundantly here for me.
  • My ideal audience can’t wait to hear what I have to say!

Pick the affirmation that works best for you (or create your own), post it on a stickie in a visible place like your desk or bathroom mirror, repeat everyday for the next 21 days, and get into action with booking yourself to speak!

Here are 5 ideas to get you started:

1) Start with your inner circle, and ask for support.

Share with your closest friends, colleagues, business associates and family members that you are looking for places to speak. Be sure and let them know the specific audiences you want to reach as well as the topic you speak on.  Then, simply ask them, “Who do you know… “

2) Be intentional and detective-like in your networking.

When you meet a new colleague in your field or a complementary field at a networking event, inquire if they speak as a way to grow their business and then ask where they have spoken recently. Be genuinely interested in their experience and also share you are looking for places to speak. You can also share at a networking roundtable you are looking for places to speak (be sure and specify your audience) and ask for referrals.

3) Create your own event.

Speak in your friend’s living room or invite a group of friends and colleagues to your own home, as a way to get started. You can also book a room at your local library, community center or clubhouse.

Make your event fun and enticing, or give it a theme. I recently attended a free presentation put on by one of my SPEAK, SHINE, SELL workshop participants, and she called it a “Fashion Mimosa Night” and gave a talk on how you can dress to manifest success in your life.

Tip: Make your event FREE, and you will remove all barriers to entry and draw more people in the door. You can also get free advertising in your local paper when you position it as a free community event.

4) Go where your ideal clients hang out.

Brainstorm and create a list of groups, organizations your ideal clients are already part of as well as businesses and places they hang out.

For example, if you work primarily with spiritual and ambitious women entrepreneurs such as I do, you’ll want to list out places where these types of women gather. Do an online search for “women’s networking” or whatever your niche is. Check out local Meetups, civic organizations and entrepreneurial groups. Play the “who do I know” game and get creative here. In addition to speaking in more traditional business settings, I’ve spoken at a chiropractor’s office, a women’s workout studio, and even once at a socially-conscious hair salon!

5) Warm up your speaking “chops” by speaking weekly.

If you’re new at speaking or want to have regular speaking practice, then I highly recommend joining Toastmasters and/or a weekly networking group such as BNI or Team Referral.

In addition, service organizations such as Rotary Club, Kiwanis and the Optimist Club are always looking for speakers, so those are great audience members to help warm up your speaking “chops”!

I hold the belief there are infinite speaking possibilities waiting for you. Stay alert to the opportunities. Be willing and ready to take action, then move your feet, as you say YES to speaking as a way to grow your business!

Learn more about the SPEAK, SHINE, SELL 1-Day Workshop here.

 

3 Ways to Access Your Inner Wisdom Business Expert

3 Ways to Access Your Inner Wisdom Business Expert

I believe we all have an inner business wisdom expert.

It’s an inner voice, sense, knowing or nudge from our soul that is infinitely wise, calm, clear and directive on the decisions and actions to take in every area of lives–from our business, our relationships, our finances, our health, and even where to find that parking spot!

The key to hearing that wise expert guide in you is sloooooooowing down, taking time throughout your day to relax your mind and body completely, and setting aside regular intervals throughout your day to tune in and connect with that part of you.

Here’s an example of how I’ve been supported by my inner wisdom business expert: last month a Platinum client emailed me for coaching support in between our regular twice a month sessions. Instead of firing off a response in typical fashion, I breathed and felt into what she was really needing, and then I slept on it. I gave myself space for clarity and wisdom to emerge.

The next day I sent a brief email, saying what needed to be said to my client and asking her a simple question.

From that question a wealth of insights and clarity poured out of her, including articulating her genius, clarifying what she’s not good at and the specific areas where she is needing support.

I later heard back from her saying, “Look what your question inspired today. I have already written TWO blogs today that are very real!”

So how do we get in touch with this inner wisdom business expert (aka, our intuition)?

Because it’s typically not a loud, demanding voice, vision or sensation, although you may experience it that way.  More often than not, it’s more like a whisper, a subtle nudge, a rippling of a vision, or an inspired idea that comes in when you’re in a relaxed state of mind. That’s why some of the best ideas can come when you’re taking a shower or just waking up from a nap!

Here are 3 ways you can access your inner wisdom business expert:

1) Get your morning download! (Coffee is optional.)

Start your day off with your journal and an empowering question you want to ask your inner wisdom business expert. Set a timer for 20 minutes and then write down whatever answers come to you. Don’t censor anything.Here are some sample questions to help get you started:

  • What is mine to do today?
  • What are the next steps for me to take in my business?
  •  What steps can I take today to attract my ideal clients?
-
  • As someone who easily attracts new ideal clients, who am I called to connect with today–or this week?
  • What do I need to know about growing revenue in my business?
  • What steps can I take today toward this project or goal of X?
  • In what ways can I choose to show up in my power today?
  • What do I need to let go of in my schedule or in my environment to create more space?

2) “Take two” throughout your day. 

Create small moments throughout your day to relax your body and mind completely.You may feel like you don’t have time or don’t want to sit for 20 or 30 minutes in a mindfulness practice each day. I get it. I’m someone who has “tried” to have a regular meditation practice for years. Lately, I have found what works for me with meditating and that’s to take time throughout my day to still my mind. So I now set an alarm chime to go off at five minutes before each hour. When I hear the chime, I stop what I’m doing to relax, take some deep breaths, empty my mind and just be. I often set a timer for 2 minutes when I get this reminder, and just sit and breathe. I call this my “take two” time.

3) Pause and ask: Does this activity feel heavy or light? Does it make me feel focused or scattered?

With every business activity you are engaging in or are thinking about engaging in, you can pause and check in. What do you notice? Does it feel heavy or light or somewhere in between? Does it make you feel clear and focused, or scattered and overwhelmed? Where is your motivation for doing this coming from? Are you doing an activity because you “should” do it or it’s what the “experts” say to do? Or is it coming from your natural joy and self-expression? Does it really light you up? What drives a lot of my business decisions and actions is this noticing.

When an idea comes up that lights me up–even though it can feel scary, too!–then I know it’s my inner wisdom business expert talking to me. When I’m doing an activity that feels “heavy,” then I stop and reassess: Is this really mine to do? Or maybe I’ll ask, what support am I needing here?

Give one or more of these a try, and comment below with your thoughts or experiences with accessing your inner wisdom business expert!

The Essential Daily 3’s for Your Business

My yoga teacher often talks about the Essential Daily 5 yoga postures to keep your body balanced, aligned and thriving in everyday life.

So one recent day in yoga class I got inspired to create the Essential Daily 3 for creating a business that is balanced with the other important parts of your life, aligned with what brings you joy, AND thriving financially.

Essentially, it boils down to taking 3 daily actions in the areas of money, marketing and mindset to grow your business, your bank account, and the big impact you’re here to make.

Of course, there’s a lot more than these actions that goes into building a profitable business you love.

But when you consistently prioritize these 3 things, your success will skyrocket, your dreams will come true, the magic will unfold.

Essential Daily #1: Marketing

Action: Book a minimum of 30 minutes each day in your calendar for marketing outreach and then spend that time reaching out and connecting with potential clients.

Remember the ABC’s of marketing? ABC stands for Always Be Connecting! Use this 30-minute block of time to make calls, send emails and follow up with hot leads, prospective clients and referral partners, or to book yourself to speak in front of groups that are your ideal audience.

Bonus Tip: How to stay focused on your outreach and stop distractions in their tracks? Before you start your calls, set the timer on your phone to 30 minutes. This simple strategy works brilliantly!

Essential Daily #2: Money

 Action: Track your numbers every single day to the penny.

Most of us want to create a more harmonious and abundant relationship with money, and I’ve found this practice is a simple way to keep you mindful and on top of what’s coming in and what’s going out (revenues and expenses).

The practice of numbers tracking keeps you consciously engaged in a daily relationship with money, empowering you to make new decisions and take new actions that will certainly take your business to the next level.

Essential Daily #3: Mindset

Action: Spend a minimum of 30 minutes everyday engaging in a practice that cultivates a calm mind, uplifts you and raises your vibration.

Pick the practice(s) that you LOVE to do—whether it’s gardening, walking in nature, meditation, journaling, yoga, reading inspirational material, mindful movement or other activities that strengthen your inner wellbeing and inspire joy in your day.

What’s key here is that you practice it consistently.

One of my favorite practices is celebrating.

So I take time almost every day to celebrate and appreciate the big AND the little wins in my business and life. Even on crappy days when nothing seems to go my way, I force myself to find at least 5 things to celebrate in the day, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem.

Bonus Tip: Set a recurring calendar reminder at the end of your day and take 10 minutes to write down 5 things you are celebrating and appreciating. This super simple practice has a big pay off: Tracking and acknowledging your successes each day breeds more success!

How to Get Started with Speaking to Grow Your Email List and Attract Wonderful New Clients for You

How to Get Started with Speaking to Grow Your Email List and Attract Wonderful New Clients for You

So you’ve heard speaking is a great way to build your business and attract new clients. But how do you even get started?

I know from personal experience how daunting it can be to hear “just get out there and speak” when you’re not even clear where to begin. So in this article I share with you my best tips for taking those critical first steps.

First of all, why even speak?

Simple answer: Because you’re seen as an EXPERT when you speak, and it’s the easiest way to demonstrate the value you can add to someone’s life.

(I remember the first time I was a roundtable presenter at a women’s conference and how I walked away from that event feeling like an expert. It was the perfect confidence-builder in those early days of getting started.)

So here are some simple steps for you:

1) Choose your hot topic.

The first step to launch yourself into speaking is to come up with a “hot topic” that gets the attention of your ideal clients. Ideally, it’s a problem that your clients regularly struggle with and that your services help them solve.

Brainstorm possible topics by asking yourself these questions:

– What is it my clients don’t know how to do?
– Where do my clients get stuck?
– What disempowers them?
– Which specific situations cause them the biggest problem?

2) Create a clear, captivating title for your talk.

Don’t try and be clever or cutesy with your title. You want to use clear language with lots of BENEFIT words and phrases.

For example, if you’re a relationship coach or therapist, your title might be “How to Put the Romance Back in Your Marriage.”

Or if you’re a health & wellness expert targeting women over 50, a possible talk title could be “5 Ways to Balance Your Hormones Naturally So You Can Sleep Soundly Each Night.”

Here are a few easy formulas you can use to create your captivating title:

“How to ______________ so you can ________________”
“How to ______________ in # Simple Steps”
“# Secrets/Keys/Steps/Strategies to_________________”

3) Make a list of ALL the possible places you could speak.

The key when you’re just getting started is to draw upon audience members that are already in existence, so you don’t have to do all the work to rent a space and promote the event.

Start by brainstorming and create a list of groups, organizations and businesses that your ideal clients are already part of.

For example, if you work primarily with women entrepreneurs such as I do, you’ll want to list out places where these types of women gather. Do an online search for “women’s networking.” Check out local Meetups, civic organizations and entrepreneurial groups.

Play the “who do I know” game and get creative here! In addition to speaking in more traditional settings, I’ve spoken at a chiropractor’s office, a women’s workout studio, and even a hair salon once!

Bonus Tip: Let your friends and colleagues know you are looking for places to speak, and ask for referrals.

4) Smile and dial!

Now that you have your list, prioritize the top 5 places where you’d like to speak and start calling them. Do a little research on the group before you call, so you’re prepared with how your talk would fit in with the group’s goals and mission.

Much of the time you’ll be leaving a voicemail, so leave a brief, friendly message and then a critical step is to follow up with an email.

Here’s a simple script you can use when you get someone live (you can modify it when leaving a message):

Hi, this is [Your Name]. I’m a [your title], and I’d love to chat with you about the possibility of speaking for your [group, organization]. I offer a phenomenal presentation on [your hot topic] where I help participants [briefly state 2-3 benefits of your talk]. How does that sound?

The most important step here is to make the call!

Invaluable Bonus Tip: Get regular speaking practice by joining Toastmasters or a weekly networking group such as BNI or Team Referral.

Add your comments or questions below about how to use speaking to grow your business. And send me an email to let me know how it goes for you.

Enjoy speaking your way to getting wonderful new clients now!

These 3 daily actions can make or break your business (and your dreams)

These 3 daily actions can make or break your biz (and your dreams)

There’s a saying I love by W. Clement Stone: “Big doors swing on little hinges.”

When you apply this to your business, it’s the little, yet consistent actions and habits that swing open wide the doors of income and opportunity for you.

In Sanskrit, the word for “habit” is called samskara. (Thanks to my yoga teacher who shared this with me the other day.) When we cultivate a new positive habit or samskara, our lives truly do transform before our eyes.

So here are the 3 daily actions in the areas of money, marketing and mindset to grow your business, your bank account, and your impact on your clients and community.

These are my personal practices, so I wouldn’t highly recommend them if I haven’t already given them a test run and KNOW they work.

Focus on these three areas each and every workday, and I guarantee you will skyrocket your success:

1) Money: Track your numbers every single day to the penny.

Tracking the inflow and outflow of your money is an amazing practice that keeps you mindful of your money—and empowered to take the necessary action steps to increase what’s coming in and be conscious of what’s going out.

For many women, it can become all too easy to ignore our finances, or to go to the other extreme and be obsessive-compulsive about our numbers.

Action: Set a recurring appointment time on your calendar each day when you write down or use a spreadsheet to track everything that has come in that day and everything that has gone out. (I do my tracking everyday at 2:30pm.)

This time is also the perfect opportunity to express appreciation—another powerful daily practice—for the inflow and outflow of money, and the value and meaning that expression has for you!

Bonus Tip: Set a weekly money date for bill paying, and schedule it as a recurring appointment on your calendar. I have my weekly “money date” on Friday mornings.

2) Marketing: Spend a minimum of 30 minutes each and every day making outreach calls to potential clients.

This one simple action has made a HUGE difference in the growth of my business. Use this 30-minute block of time to make calls, send emails and follow up with former, current and prospective clients for setting appointments and booking NEW business, or taking steps toward your big dreams.

Bonus Tip: Use a timer or hourglass to keep you focused on the project at hand and minimize distractions that are rife for many entrepreneurs who work from home. Set a timer for 30 or 60 minutes when you’re doing some critical (yet easy-to-avoid) business-building activity such as outreach phone calls, updating your website or writing a blog post.

3) Mindset: Set aside time daily (30 minutes at minimum, 1 hour is best) for spiritual nourishment and renewal.

This is perhaps the most important action of them all, as it promotes a calm mind and a feeling of being centered and grounded throughout your day–something you definitely want to feel when you’re marketing your business or tracking your money!

This time can include a combination of personal introspection, quiet time, yoga, meditation, journaling, a contemplative walk in nature, gardening, mindful movement, reading or listening to inspirational material, or other activities that strengthen your inner wellbeing and help you feel peaceful.

I’m a morning person so I like to get up before my family does to have a dedicated hour-plus time for meditation, visioning, journaling and reading from a book that contributes to my spiritual and personal growth. I also read my 3-Year Life Vision Plan each morning while making coffee and doing standing stretches in the kitchen.

Bonus Tip: Choose the 1-3 nourishing activities that truly feed YOU (not the ones that others are doing or the ones you think you SHOULD do) and then stick with it. Again, the key is consistency. Put it in your calendar and just do it. No excuses. 🙂

Be patient with yourself as you’re installing these new healthy habits or samskaras into your life. Don’t give up—and, eventually, they will become part of your normal routine.

Plus, you’ll feel great knowing that you are not only doing something that takes care of yourself, but also benefits your family, your friends, your clients, your community, and your bank account!

Leave a comment below and let me know how these tips have helped you!

5 Tips to Make Each Day Positive, Productive—and Profitable

One of the best tools I know of to keep me on track, disciplined and focused is… my calendar.

“Calendarizing” just about everything related to my business—even personal stuff like exercise, meditation, date nights and social time—may sound constricting or rigid.

But, in fact, it’s just the opposite… it’s liberating!

Having appointments, work projects AND personal commitments to myself on my calendar give structure to my day (something I need as an entrepreneur who works from home) and helps me grow my business AND enjoy a balanced life with ease and grace.

If you struggle with overwhelm, lack of focus, prioritizing or just getting the important things done in your biz and life, here are five tips to help you:

1) First off, make friends with your calendar.

Express your “calendar-love” daily by investing at least 10-15 minutes of your time planning, keeping it organized and clutter-free and working for you, not against you.

Google or other online calendars make this sooooo easy. I love being able to easily set “repeat” events like I do for meditation, exercise, marketing outreach and tracking my numbers each day, plus other great features that pencil & paper calendars don’t have. Plus, I sync it with my iPhone, so I always have my calendar with me and can set appointments or schedule things on the go.

Here’s an empowering calendar mindset for you:

My calendar is my friend. It’s here to support me in positive, productive AND profitable ways each day.

2) Make sure everything that’s on your calendar is what you WANT to be there.

Is it packed to the gills with appointments and your long to-do list? Then, look at where you need to build in more buffer or integration time between projects and appointments, as well what things you can cross off your list.

Yes, part of growing a business and building your dreams is discerning what needs to be let go of–or delegated!

Or if there’s too many blank spaces and “unaccounted for” time on your calendar, then you’ll want to start scheduling in those things that are most important to you—such as marketing your business, networking, family and relationship time, and, yes, self-care.

Essentially, you want to ensure that your calendar serves you and not you being a slave to it.

3) Schedule a minimum of 30 minutes of personal one-on-one marketing outreach or dreambuilding time every single workday on your calendar—first thing in the morning is best. Just get it done!

This one simple action has made a HUGE difference in the growth of my business. There’s the old saying, “Little hinges swing big doors.” And when you stay in action consistently each and every day with building your business and creating your dreams, the doors of income and opportunity will swing open wide for you.

Use this 30-minute block of time to make calls, send emails and follow up with former, current and prospective clients for setting appointments and booking NEW business, or taking steps toward your big dreams.

4) Use a timer or hourglass to keep you focused on the project at hand.

This is one of my absolutely favorite tips. Many entrepreneurs like me work from home—and there’s soooo many distractions that can call to us: The laundry! The dishes! Email! Facebook! The online shopping that needs to get done! The list can go on.

So we need support, yes?

To help you stay on track and minimize those pesky distractions, set a timer for 30 or 60 minutes when you’re doing some critical (yet easy-to-avoid) business-building activity such as outreach phone calls, updating your website or writing a blog post.

Use that timer as your little sidekick buddy and as a signal to the Universe that you’re serious about focusing and getting a particular task DONE. And when your mind starts to wander and think about doing other things like checking email or Facebook, you can just take a look at your timer and hear it’s friendly reminder saying, “Not yet, sweetie…”

Then, when your 30 or 60 minutes are up, consciously choose whether you want to keep going or conclude your focused time for the day. (Set a new timer for the desired amount if you’re continuing.)

You can even use a timer for 10- or 15-minute time blocks, too, like I’m doing now to help me finish this article. 🙂

5) Don’t forget to schedule in “YOU” time for spiritual renewal, rest and fun.

Too many entrepreneurs (especially moms with kids and most Type A personalities) can neglect themselves or forget to schedule in downtime when running their own business. But the truth is, when our well is dry and depleted we have nothing to give to others anyway. So it’s critical to schedule in time for rest, renewal, fun and self-care.

When I first started my business and left my full-time job, I couldn’t wait to start taking my favorite yoga class with my favorite teacher on Tuesdays at 9:15 a.m. For the first 6 months or so, though, for the life of me, I couldn’t get myself to go to that yoga class! I tried once or twice, but would end up feeling guilty for going to yoga during “work hours.” (Obviously, the 9-5 grind was so engrained in me.)

I didn’t give up, though. I faithfully kept that yoga class on my calendar, started showing up (guilty feelings and all) and eventually it became a habit—and one that I look forward to every week now.

So just because you set an intention to meditate everyday, for example, and then you take the step of putting it on your calendar to remind you, but end up not doing it… don’t give up! Be patient with yourself—and, eventually, the healthy habit will become part of your normal routine. AND you’ll feel great knowing that you are not only doing something that takes care of yourself, but also benefits your family, your friends, your clients,  your community, and your bank account.

P.S. As always, I want to hear from you! Post a comment below and let me know your thoughts on these 5 tips for making each day positive, productive—and profitable.