It’s October, which marks the last quarter of the year. Yup, it snuck up on some of us, and some of us never took our eyes off the prize ahead.
I recently mentioned this to a client and friend of mine and she had forgotten how close we are to the end of the year (like many of us do). We took time to set goals together in January and now, we’re approaching their due date.
It’s expected that sometimes the everyday gets in the way of accomplishing our goals. Sometimes our goals change and shift from what we learn as we’re chasing them and other times we even meet them early or realize we need more time.
If you’re like many entrepreneurs (and goal driven people), you drew out a plan for the next twelve months back before the New Year and now we’re all reaching that last stretch. Are you on track to meeting your goals? It’s not too late to make the best of this year.
Here’s how you can start making the best of these last few months.
Review your current goals
One recommendation I shared with my client on where to start was to review the goals that were left and take some time to reorganize and prioritize them. Make decisions on what needs more time, what should be saved until the next quarter and what needs to get done now.
Be realistic and honest with yourself about what can get done with the time that’s left. It’s ok if some goals need extra time or need to be pushed over into the next quarter to be sure the more important ones get the attention they need. But if you’re not honest with yourself and just try to finish everything at once without a realistic plan, you will burn yourself out, probably before you even reach the end of the year.
Create your new (updated) plan
After you’ve reviewed the goals you have left and re-prioritized them, it’s time to figure out the answers to all the big questions like:
- How can I get it done in the time I have left?
- What is it that I need in order to accomplish this goal?
- Who needs to be on board?
- What obstacles have stood in my way around this goal?
- And which obstacles do I foresee coming in the next few months that can slow me down?
These questions help you find the details that will create a plan to accomplish your goals.
Take action, ASAP
Now, make the changes that you need in order to be able to meet these goals in time. Whether they be daily actions you take, designating some extra time, plugging in some meetings, delegating extra tasks off of your list or bringing on a whole other set of hands to double your efforts. Whatever it is, take action now.
Go on…Put it into your calendar, onto your to-do list, whatever it is that you need to do. And don’t forget to post your brand-spanking-new “last stretch” plan where you can see it daily and be reminded every day to stay focused and on track.
WARNING: Keep in mind that the end of the year often brings lots of extra stress with it, both in and out of your business. So remember to plan accordingly and leave some time for the holiday hustle, the cold weather blues, the very important family time, and whatever other obstacles might slow you down in the last stretch.
Don’t forget to ask the question “why not” and review the answers carefully
While you don’t ever want to dwell on the negative, it helps to at least review why you were off track in meeting your goals.
It’s a given that sometimes various obstacles can get in our way and sometimes our goals change as we work on them. But it’s very important that we bring to light the reasons behind why it hasn’t gotten done so that we can better understand what is happening, what is slowing us down, and we can begin to make the changes to avoid them in the future.
Perhaps you learn that you aren’t moving your business forward because your up all hours of the night doing admin work instead of working on your next big seller, maybe you don’t have the right tools or support, or maybe you realize there’s some fear involved on your end. There are plenty of reasons that might hold us back but the key is finding out what they are and learning from them.
And don’t forget about all the good stuff!
I don’t know about you, but a lot of times when I get to the end of the year, I feel like I’ve never done enough and I feel ashamed if I didn’t meet all of my goals (even though we understand it is often a learning process). This also kind of makes me a little reluctant to review my progress and I assume I’ve gotten nothing done the whole year, nothing. But I know it isn’t true and I also know I’m not the only one who does this. I’m not the only one who gets down on myself for my mistakes so much that I ignore the accomplishments and lose my motivation to move forward.
It is so important to declare our accomplishments, because without them we are on the road to easily find reasons to give up or slow down, because in our heads we haven’t done enough. We lose the momentum of when we first set these goals and now the inspiration and motivation have faded behind us. Remembering our accomplishments and seeing our progress can help get our blood pumping again.
So be sure to take the time out to review the good, the great, the “a-friggin-mazing”s, everything that you have accomplished this year, and let that lead the way to your next accomplishments; not the other way around. Don’t let your failures be the spokesperson guiding you to your next steps. They are a part of the learning process, yes, but it’s better going forward with a cheering crowd then one that’s nagging you about your failures. Take what you need to learn from those voices, but show up to your next steps with the confidence of your accomplishments.
Have you reviewed your End Of Year Goals yet?
Are you on track to accomplishing your yearly goals? (there’s no shame if you aren’t!)
Let us know how reaching the last quarter makes you feel.
Here’s a FREE WORKSHEET to help you review and accomplish those goals!
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Happy Goal Getting!