Planning is a skill and an art that can be learned, honed, and developed to support you to reach your goals and dreams with more ease and less stress.
As with any skill you’re cultivating, planning needs practice practice practice as key.
Don’t expect yourself to get it perfect the first time. In fact, expect yourself never to plan perfectly! Part of any good plan is its implementation process. This requires us to become at ease with being appropriately flexible and understanding that course correction is part of that process.
So be easy about it, and know that your plan and planning process will evolve as you and your business do, and this is a really good thing!
Below are the 6 most common mistakes I see when it comes to planning.
1. Not having a good, repeatable planning system.
Sitting down with a blank page to write a plan can easily lead to missing the big picture, the detail, or the logical path which leads you from one to the other.
Having a good planning document reminds you to look at all aspects of your business on a macro and micro level, as well as training your mind to think in these terms.
When you get to know your planning document well, your brain fills in many of the blanks before you even sit down to write. It takes away decision fatigue because it’s very clear what you need to consider.
2. Not scheduling/taking enough time to plan (if at all.)
Creating a good plan IS time-consuming. If we don’t schedule and take the time out, it’s easy to miss the opportunity because we’re too busy with ‘other’ stuff.
You are the CEO of your business and if you don’t give it the time it deserves you can easily overlook so much opportunity for learning, clarity, guidance, and momentum.
Your plan will serve as your guide and friend going forward if you will allow it. It can take you out of overwhelming feeling and into momentum in a flash IF you work with it!
It takes me a minimum of three hours to create my quarterly plan, it’s a time investment that pays dividends in terms of a more easeful and purposeful business and life.
3. Skipping some of the steps.
It’s easy to skip parts of the plan thinking ‘ I don’t need to do that, I know what that is, that hasn’t changed since last time, I did that recently’ and the like.
Although all that may be true, I find for both myself and my clients that new insight usually comes forth when you actually sit and fill in the plan.
There’s always another layer of insight to uncover or perceive. Don’t rob yourself of the opportunity.
4. Putting too much on the plan or overplanning.
It can be so easy to fill in every minute, hour and week with exciting new projects, or that never-ending to-do list.
The problem with this is that when life happens, ie unexpected things happen which we need to attend to, our energy fluctuates or we have a health challenge (#human ) or things inevitably take longer than we expect, we can easily be left feeling disappointed because we didn’t get everything done.
It also means that there isn’t the headspace to allow new genius inspiration to flow or the time to take up unexpected opportunities when they arise. It also means we can easily squeeze out the time and space for having fun and experiencing pleasure and joy!
Factoring in plenty of white space allows us to work more efficiently, be responsive to opportunities, and have more fun!!!
Time and again I see people, (myself included) vastly underestimating how long a task or project will take to complete. Regular planning helps us learn to be more realistic about how long things actually take.
5. Not committing to dates and not scheduling.
Being vague about when you’ll launch that thing, or when you’ll take that holiday can often lead to it either not happening at all, or being really rushed and stressed.
When you put a date in the calendar, you can reverse engineer exactly what needs to happen and when in order to have the most successful and stress-free launch or holiday possible. There’ll be time to consider and cover all the bases in order to maximize the visibility of your launch promo and follow up, or to schedule content and communication with your audience whilst you are away.
6. Not fracturing life/personal goals to the plan.
Your personal, life and health goals support you in running a successful business. When you fill your cup outside of your business and mind your mental, physical, and spiritual health, you’ll be way more efficient and successful in your business.
Having an awareness of how these goals fit into your priority list, how much time, effort, and energy they’ll take, and why they’re important to you, will give you a much greater chance of accomplishing both your personal and your business goals.
If you recognise any of these points in yourself, don’t fret. They’re all relatively easy to fix, they just take a bit of awareness, a bit of focus, and a bit of commitment.
You now have the awareness. Out of the ones you recognise, pick which one would be the most impactful for you and your business once you shift it. Then decide how you’re going to address it. Mark it in your calendar at regular intervals as a reminder to keep your focus on that particular shift that you’re making.
If you’d like some more ideas on how to overcome some of the mistakes, drop me an email, reference this article and we can set up a free 30-minute call to give you some personal pointers to get you planning more effectively so that you can have a more easeful and purposeful business life.