I believe making real progress in any aspect of life requires you get to the core issues that are creating obstacles. As a holistic health coach you probably hold the same values. You strive to help your clients get to the root problem instead of treating their symptoms as is typical in conventional medicine. If you are frustrated with your inability to “manage your time most effectively” you may be trying to treat your symptoms and may not even think about what is beneath your behavior.
Do you suffer from any of the
Top 5 Most Common Time Management Ailments?
Symptom #1: False Starts. You chase one idea for awhile and then it just seems too HARD and everything is a struggle. You get frustrated and move onto your next “big” idea.
Core Issue: You have not defined your life purpose and clearly identified your God given gifts.
Somewhere inside of you there is a burning desire to do something that will bring out the best you have to offer the world. You don’t need to create it. God put it in you when you were born. Over the years you may have buried it or listened to what others told you to do and stopped listening to yourself. When you clearly identify your purpose and how you can fulfill it using your talents you will be able to crystallize your vision, chart a course and easily stay focused and committed to the idea. It will be like a homing device is drawing your forward to your goal.
Cure: Spend time thinking back to what you dreamed of doing as a kid, or wanted to pursue but thought you couldn’t make a living doing it. What activities do you find you are drawn to and when you are engaged in them you simply lose track of time? These are all clues to who you are at your core and what comes so naturally others say “you make it look so easy!”
Sometimes we can’t see our own gifts because they are right in front of us and we are “too close” to see them. If so get a mentor or coach to help you determine what your talents are. Or there are on-line tools (One that is simple and can at least get you started is Strengthfinders.com).
Symptom #2: You set goals but never accomplish them at the pace you desire. You almost never accomplish everything on your list for the day or the week.
Core Issue: You aren’t being HONEST with yourself about the time and effort needed to build a sustainable and profitable business.
If you constantly find yourself overwhelmed or angry with yourself for not getting enough done you have to ask if you are being honest with yourself about your expectations. You may be expecting too much too soon.
Most businesses take 3 years to get up and running and generating revenue and profit. If you listen to all the business building ‘guru’s you will start to believe that you can become a millionaire almost overnight or at least within a year. While it is possible, it is most likely that with hard work, consistency and a positive mental attitude to do whatever it takes to build your business you will be reaping rewards within 3 years.
Cure: If you have not set goals for yourself sit down and think through what is a realistic time frame for your business to be generating revenue and breaking even or providing some profit. If you’ve set goals reassess them and seriously consider if your expectations are unrealistic.
How much time you are willing to put against your business? A full time effort of learning new skills, getting out in the marketplace, understanding your customer and practicing your trade is very different than spending a couple hours each day due to another job or family obligations. Be honest with yourself and decide how much time you can really devote. Then make your vision for financial pay-off and the size of your client base match the time you can spend building the business at this point in your life.
How? Get out a full year calendar and map out all the vacations, and free time you truly want and require for family/personal interests. Then determine how many hours are left (after you take out any other work obligations you may have in other endeavors). With the time left plan out all the activities required to build the business (down to as much detail as possible). This will give you a realistic picture of what it will take in hours to reach your goals. It may seem backwards to put in other life goals first, but it will force you to see truth and build your business around your life from the beginning.
Symptom #3: You are a multi-tasking “master” and don’t understand why you aren’t moving forward in your business.
Core Issue: You prioritize your business on the same level as your other life commitments.
Are you really serious and committed to building your business? If you are than you should focus a significant amount of time each day to ONLY your business. When I first left corporate America I was so relieved to have some flexibility in my day that I found myself blending work, family, friends, exercise, managing a home, etc. into every day. I eventually realized that while I was getting many little things done I was making no real progress on the most important things. With flexibility comes temptation to squeeze in all the “to do’s”. If you really want to have a profitable and successful business it has to be very high on your list of priorities and requires focused and dedicated time.
Cure: Stop Multi tasking – it is a lie that you will get more done this way. Devote as much time as you committed based on the suggestions in “being HONEST” with yourself above. Then get serious and stick to that number of hours each week on your business.
Symptom #4: Constant feeling of being OVERWHELMED.
Core Issue: No Business Plan. You often think there are so many things to do to build your business you don’t know where to start.
Maybe you have the main purpose for your business – let’s say you are going to build an on-line health coaching business to assist people who want to get healthy with natural foods. Now, there are literally thousands of decisions to make and thousands of ways to market, teach, and serve your customers. So what do you do first and where do you spend most of your time? Without a plan your vision will be surrounded with constant chaos and indecision.
Cure: Take the time necessary to work through a business plan. You can buy business plan templates or work with a business coach to walk you through a step by step plan. The indecision of what to do next and the overwhelming feeling of having to do too much at once will be completely eliminated once you map out your plan. All business endeavors require real investment and by doing so you are saying you believe in YOU and your ability to be successful. Not making the investment in a plan will end up costing you more in the long-run.
Symptom #5: You are constantly planning and re-assessing your plan but never take action.
Core Issue: FEAR! All this over thinking is a making you crazy!
Do you have all your goals clearly mapped out, your plan on paper and continually question if it’s the right plan? This is a HUGE time waster and completely unproductive. As much as we hate to admit it FEAR can grip us and have such a hold we don’t even realize it. Are you afraid that if everything is NOT perfect you can’t do anything? Perfectionism, the need to be able to answer every question that comes up, or the nagging thought that you don’t know enough or aren’t smart enough to be successful as a health coach, is the enemy of effective time management.
Cure: TAKE ACTION! Pick ONE thing that you can do to shake the fear. What happens with action? You get out and DO and one of two things will happen. You will either succeed with the step you take and realize you were worried about nothing. Or, you will make some mistakes and survive the experience and again realize you created the worst case scenario in your head. By doing things afraid each time it will get easier and you will build confidence and courage.
Give yourself a “get out of time management jail card” by being honest about the core issues you may need to heal. Recognition is the first step to recovery and progress. Then you can become a “master of time” and begin reaping the rewards of a profitable, sustainable and manageable health coaching business that allows you to live the life you see in your mind’s eye.
Do us a favor please. Head over to our Facebook page and tell us what you think. Do you feel like you can be more productive by implementing some of these tips? Give us your thoughts. We really want to have your input!
MaryAnn & Karen