3 Steps to Eliminate Business Planning Overwhelm

business planning business tools eliminate overwhelm

This time of the year is when many successful entrepreneurs are advocating for their favorite planners. You read how excited the most prominent names in the business are regarding “architecting their success.”

That’s awesome! But, what if you don’t have a clue on what to do and where to start?

Here are 3 steps to eliminate business planning overwhelm: 

Step 1: Hone it Down

For me, the concept of a 5-10 year business plan seems elusive and a waste of time! With the ever-changing climate of the digital world, coupled with our own inner changes (which can be a total metamorphosis), I think setting monthly, quarterly and yearly goals make the most sense. They stay fresh, pertinent, and adaptable.

Think about it – our bodies and minds are made up of cells. Our cells regenerate often (some on a daily basis), re-creating our organs and in turn, many times our mindset.

Who knows what we are going to think and feel like in a decade?

What we can keep our finger on the pulse of is being laser-focused on the now and short-term desired outcomes. “Short-term” does not mean short-sighted. I love VISION as much as the next entrepreneur. I see this vision coming into play for “big picture” dreams/goals (i.e. I’d like to live on an island 5 months out of the year or my goal to retire is at age 55, etc.).

Narrowing the focus down to reaching your weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly goals will serve you well.

Step 2: Write it Down

You’ve probably heard the saying “ink it to make it real.” 

Studies show that when we actually use pen and paper to write our goals, the odds of us achieving those goals are significantly higher.

There was one study done at Yale University (according to Keith Ellis, author of The Magic Lamp), where they discovered only 3% of one of the graduating classes had a written goal. That same class was surveyed again twenty years later and it was discovered that the 3% who had written down their goals had amassed a net worth greater than the other 97% combined. Now that’s powerful!

Leonie Dawson, entrepreneurial phenomenon says, 80% of people don’t even think of their goals, 16% don’t write them down, 3% write them down, and only 1% write their goals down and regularly review them. And they, my friends, are the HIGHEST ACHIEVERS!

Isn’t that interesting?

Leaving goal setting out of your business plan is not a good idea!

I can see (for the anti-schedulers) how not preparing an editorial calendar makes sense to be “in the moment” for the flow of ideas, say for your weekly blog post. However, setting goals, especially for the solopreneur, is crucial for moving ahead to achieve tangible results on a consistent basis. Otherwise, the outcome can be willy nilly and who wants to leave their business success up to chance and luck? Not I said the goose!! 

The best way to stay on track is to thoughtfully sketch out your goals often (maybe daily, but I like weekly myself). What that might look like is –

This week I will:
*Make 8 follow-up calls/emails
*Create lessons 1 and 2 of my new online course
*Learn how to do my first Facebook LIVE

It is most effective to be as specific as possible, so our brain has a target to reach.

Experts agree the “SMART” method of goal setting brings the best results.
S = Specific
M = Measurable
A = Actionable
R = Realistic
T = Time-based

Remember, rewarding yourself for goals achieved is also a wonderful tool to keep engagement and satisfaction alive. It could be little things like treating yourself to a pedicure when you get your first sale from a facebook ad or something bigger like a weekend getaway after a successful launch.

If all this sounds good, but you’re still feeling like, “I don’t even know what I want to plan!” then… 

Step 3: Stop this Train

Like John Mayer’s lyrics state, stop this train.

“Stop this train
I want to get off and go home again
I can’t take the speed it’s moving in
I know I can’t
But, honestly, won’t someone stop this train?”

It may be time to tap into your inner wisdom.

Journaling about what “juices you up” can help you get back on track. Think about what things give you energy and what robs it. It’s ok to re-evaluate your direction. Perhaps you’ve been doing 1-on-1 coaching and that business model is now draining you. Consider crafting a group coaching offer to maximize your time, and also provides an opportunity to draw on the energy of the participants for momentum.

If you’re feeling stuck, mix it up. Because chances are if you’re not even engaged and enthusiastic about your work, your clients surely won’t be either.

Ask yourself:

  1. A) What was the last thing that you did in your business that brought you joy?
    B) Reflect on the most recent complements that your tribe has given you.

Combine those 2 aspects to get closer to your “sweet spot” and use that info as your launching pad.


Once you're clear, go back to steps 1 & 2- hone it down and write it down.

In order to create our “best year yet,” we have to be willing to stretch. Some of our most awesome work comes from “riding the edge” of our comfort zone. I challenge you to have 1 of those types of tasks to accomplish on a weekly basis.

Before you know it, your business flexors will be pumped and impressive! 

Remember, as always, to be kind to yourself. It may take a little practice to strike a balance between being too soft and stressing yourself out. But, the “take away” here is, it is possible to map out our plan + have a conscious business journey, without overwhelm.

Simple and true.

Until next time…breathe joy,

PS: Need helping planning things out? Feel free to book a complimentary Strategy Session with me here.

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