Almost the end of the year, time to reflect on what you have done. Did you achieve your dynamic goals? Did you accomplish anything at all?
No shade sis, but we are about to wrap another year, and I’m just curious if all those ideas are still in your head or typed up nicely on that google doc somewhere on a cloud. Reflection is good for the soul.
Before we get into what we haven’t done, take a few moments to map out your achievements for the year so far. Sometimes we are moving too fast to embrace our efforts, accomplishments, failures (and the lessons gained), and our success.
Back to Goals
Truthfully, goal-setting is easy. It’s the accountability side of things people struggle with.
Mapping out your achievements is a great way to reflect on what you have achieved and keeping it in front of you. Your brain loves visuals! Having a vision board is a great way to help you focus on what you want to achieve or need to keep building on. Typically, when you think about goals for your business, you probably think of pages of text, boring stats, and numbers. You know, the kind of thing you’d nervously push across the desk to a bank officer in hopes of securing a loan.
I don’t know about you, but I can’t think of anything I like less than to have to piece together that kind of stiff, formal business plan. I’m not saying don’t know your numbers and projections, but let’s infuse some creativity into your growth process.
Instead of thinking about the words and the numbers, think about the pictures. It’s much easier to see the future when you can see it.
The Business Plan That Isn’t
What if you could plan your business with fun, colorful photos, and inspirational quotes and phrases instead? What would that do for your daily motivation?
Well, that’s exactly what a vision board will do for you. By collecting images representing your dreams and aspirations, you’ll have a constant reminder of where you’re going and even why you started your business in the first place. Maybe you want to spend more time with your kids as they’re growing up or have enough money to finally take that vacation to the Maldives. What about that house in Panama City Beach or upgrading to that house that’s calling your name? You haven’t invested all this time and energy into your success to flop now.
None of these things will find a place in a traditional business plan or the occasional google doc or note app you never visit on your phone, but they’re perfect for your vision board. More importantly, they’re critical to your long-term success. Without your dreams, it’s nearly impossible to remain focused and on track when it comes to growth, but with visual reminders, it’s easy!
Why Vision Boards Work
Does all this feel pretty airy-fairy to you? You’re not alone. Many of us were raised to believe that business had to be all about numbers and stats and that there was no room for fun when making money.
I completely disagree!
In fact, some of the most successful people in the world routinely use vision boards to help clarify their dreams and keep their goals front of mind. And that’s precisely why vision boards work so well. By keeping visual reminders within sight, you’re constantly aware of your “why,” and that’s a powerful motivator, no matter what you’re working on.
As we [almost] wrap this year, it’s time to get very specific about those big audacious goals and not lose that desire to finish. Don’t be afraid to set goals that scare you, but also set goals that reflect and represent you. It’s easy to get caught up thinking that our goals need to be monumental or based on what success looks like for another person. Sometimes that leads to focusing too much on the numbers, whether it’s a paycheck, followers on Instagram failed launches and profits.
What do you really want?
What makes the most sense for you at this point in your life?
The Homework (my favorite thing to give my clients)
Instead of thinking about Q4 as a cue for what you haven’t done, let’s get a handle on what you need to do to finish strong. Let’s take this last chunk of the year (90 days) and break it down into bite-sized pieces. Try to visualize it as 3 separate chapters (October, November, December).
Where do you want to be at the end of, say, October? And what do you need to achieve to get there? Take those goals and break them down into visible milestones that will become your vision and virtual motivator for the year’s balance.
The more you can help yourself see the next step in front of you, the more likely you will remain consistent and connected to the process. That said, keep it simple. Focus on fewer, more meaningful goals so it doesn’t feel overwhelming and kick up any anxiety or your favorite friend, procrastination.
Don’t overthink this process. Give yourself the freedom to dream, to break out the glue stick and get messy and create.
Amanda Fludd, LCSW-R is passionate about supporting the dream of ambitious women and improving mental health in all settings. The goal is to simply help you get out of your head, stress less, and focus on your success.