November 29, 2022
Right now what we’re seeing is an energy of ‘stuckness’…like a plane on a runway that never quite takes off.
We’re hearing things like: “I feel like I’m not progressing” “I’m in a rut” “I’m not moving forward fast enough” “I feel like a rat in a cage going round and round and round.” “No matter what I do it never feels like enough”. It’s pretty frustrating stuff.
Time management is an important piece of this puzzle, but the solution goes deeper than that.
(By the way, if you’re looking for time management tips, listen to this episode#13: How to be a graphic design time management boss“.)
We’re putting on our coaching hats today and dishing out a bit of tough love. We want to ask you, is moving forward in your graphic design business really your priority?
You might say ‘Kris & Don, what the actual f**k? I live, breathe and sleep my design business. It’s taken over my life. How can you ask me if it’s a priority?’.
You see, we can get super busy doing the do. All those daily tasks that won’t *actually* help you move forward in your business.
We want to challenge you to make achieving your dreams a priority. What’s it really going to take to make your goals a reality?
Let’s unpack ways to get you moving forward today.
Your business should get first dibs. By that we mean the giving the best energy you have to your business during your best time. All too often we start the day with client work first up. What if you worked on your business first?
Your business should get the best of you. The very best of your brain power, creativity and conceptual thought.
When is your optimal time? When are you firing on all cylinders?
We are all individual. Your best time might be eight o’clock in the morning where all your ideas and thoughts naturally flow in. Or you might be a night owl, and you kick into gear later on in the day.
Whatever the case, all too often, we give our best time to our clients.
But we can choose to be more strategic about our time. You can make the time you work on your business non-negotiable by ensuring that it’s slotted into your calendar at a time where you are at your optimal working capacity.
Doing CEO work is strategic work. It takes brain calories. It takes energy and effort, and you need to be able to show up with that energy and effort every time you do it.
There’s a great little book by Brian Tracey, called Eat That Frog.
The whole premise of the book is if you HAD to eat a frog every day, then it would be better doing it first thing.
Otherwise we torture ourselves with the horrible thought of the task ahead all day long.
Doing strategic CEO work can feel hard. It takes brain calories.
It might *feel* easier to do the fun TikTok vid or spend more hours looking for design inspiration instead.
But is that really helping you to move ahead in your business? Is it going to bring new clients in the door? Is it going to help you provide your clients with an amazing customer experience?
It’s very easy to get distracted.
What is actually going to impact your business in a positive way? Finally creating that welcome guide? Putting together a solid promotional plan for the next month? Creating a new email lead magnet and nurture sequence?
Some of these tasks may feel big, heavy and overwhelming. But future YOU will thank you!
We listened to a great conversation with Marie Forleo & Steven Pressfield recently. It was all about the launch of his new book “Put your ass (where your heart wants to be)”.
We’re pretty sure Marie will need no introduction. But if you haven’t heard of Steven Pressfield, he is the author of best selling book “The War of Art” as well as many others.
Here’s our key takeaway from their conversation:
You only need to put your ass where your heart wants to be for a set time each day. And, it is possible to be 100% committed 10 % of the time
Say you commit to an hour a day to work on your business, seven hours a week. That equals 30 hours a month, which is 365 hours in a year, which is nine by 40 hour weeks!
So you can be a full time CEO of your business for 9 weeks of the year, as long as you commit 100% to just one hour a day. The key is consistency.
Steven Pressfield used the example of an ad-man who started work an hour early each morning. During that hour, he was not an advertising executive, he was an author. Then he would open his door an hour later and he would be the ad man. And in that first hour he WAS an author. As a result of that consistency, James Patterson has since sold over 3 million novels.
Think of where that consistency, passion and presence could take you? Where you could show up 100% as the CEO of your business?
We have to make choices. We are making choices all the time. It might mean you watch one hour less television each night.
Put your energy where your heart wants to be.
Is it really a priority? You may feel like it is but are your actions really showing this?
When you are sick, you make healing a priority. When your loved one is in desperate need of your help you make it a priority to help them. We always manage to make time for things we prioritise.
This next bit might sound a bit harsh (we’ve definitely got our coaching hats on here). If you’re staying up to watch another hour of Netflix rather than getting your ass into bed, is growing your business really a priority?
We’re not saying work ridiculous hours or don’t take time for yourself. But if you think about it, what are you really getting out of that 1 hour of netflix? A bit of pleasure, yes, but nothing near the reward and absolute gift to your future of making an incredible business for yourself.
Schedule in your CEO time and show up. Sit in the seat. Make it a non-negotiable in your day.
Marie Forleo said:
“You don’t necessarily have to not have your full-time job or your part-time job or all of your family commitments or your kids or your wife or your husband or all the things that we have as beautiful, complex, messy humans, and you can still carve this out.”
Everybody is winning when you are prioritizing time for your business. If your whole client journey has been strategically considered, then the whole experience is elevated. This leads to trust, which leads to respect, which leads to repeat business, which leads to referrals, which leads to more business with new clients. Win win!
It’s interesting how we think ‘I’ve got no time!’ but if you’re sick or in a crisis, you’ll reshuffle deadlines because you physically can’t do the work. You’ll make time, because you have to.
Don’t be fooled by the fact that ‘Oh, it’s just an hour…why bother?’
Even if it’s only an hour, the compounding effect can happen. Just like compounding interest, one hour builds upon the next, upon the next and upon the next. You will get the benefit. Your business will get the benefit. Your clients will get the benefit.
You will be amazed at how far you’ve come.
In our experience the best investment we have made is when we have invested in ourselves.
Whether it be 1:1 coaching or The Academy, having someone to guide you is a guaranteed way to move the needle—FAST. Accountability is the key.
If you want us to be your coaches, head to our work with us page to find out more.
We only work with graphic, brand and web designers and with our whole hearts want you to succeed.
With love, Kris & Don xo
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