I was wrestling with what i was going to write today and thought I would just share some of my insights with you as this 90 day blogging strategy comes to a close. This was a challenge I gave myself, by the way.
I hope that in today’s post, you take away a few ideas that will help you with whatever goals you set. And I will talk about planning for the NEXT 90 days.
If you don’t know, back on February 19, 2014 I was thinking about ALL the ideas I had running through my head. Projects I wanted to take on, relationships I wanted to cultivate, and the direction I wanted to take my business. I was feeling absolutely overwhelmed at the quantity of thoughts that I had, and it turns out that most people feel the same way.
- Do I want to write a book?
- Should I re-brand?
- Should I spend a bunch of money on advertising?
- Should I focus on Facebook?
- Should I just give up and go do something else?
- What the hell am I trying to do?
- Who am I trying to be?
That was when I stumbled on a blog post that talked about blogging daily and the stats to support it. I disregarded it at first. then I did some more research and found some pretty cool resources. I will be writing a follow up post to this as well in the weeks to come with the DETAILS of the journey, but for now, it is just a bit of a story.
Get real about YOU
Back in February, I asked myself, “If I am to actually blog daily for 90 days, knowing what I know about myself, what would I need to do in order to succeed?”
You see, I don’t like saying I will do something and not follow through. So I took a few hours and looked at what I needed and was completely honest with myself. Just like I talked about in yesterday’s post on personal mastery.
Before you begin any endeavor, take a moment and be real. When you plan for the next 90 days, you should ask yourself these questions:
- First, can you actually do the work? In my case, yes. I could, in theory, write every day. As a skill, I could do the writing, but I also needed to think about all the technical skills that go along with the blog. I made a list of everything that would need to happen each day.
- Second, how will you sustain the energy level throughout? As I mentioned in my post at day 56, I started losing momentum. I started to thinking about lowering my vision and changing the goal. And that’s totally normal. Can you picture yourself NOW in that state at day 56 and be already prepared to have the pep talk?
- Third, do you actually want to do the work and will you enjoy the process? This is a tricky one. Regardless of what you will be working on, can you find a way to picture yourself enjoying the process, even when you don’t feel like doing the work? Can you even take pleasure in the challenge itself? Will the work be fulfilling? Not just the goal, but the work?
- Fourth, will you focus on activity an NOT goals? This is the secret to 90 day plans. It is easy to set some goals and loosely work towards them, but the real magic comes from understanding the power of daily habits and forgetting about the goal. I had to commit to myself that regardless of the numbers or results, I would push forward and do the work.
- Fifth, will you actually do it? Now this may seem like a repeat of the others, but this is a question that only YOU can ask yourself. I look in the mirror and ask it directly. I need to know that I will do it and look myself in the eyes when I set my mind to it. Remember that only YOU know when you slack off. It is easy to make excuses, and the worst person you can ever let down is yourself.
Make a SOLID plan
Once I had the initial discussion with myself, I mapped out exactly what I would need to do to accomplish a goal of blogging every day. I made spreadsheets, calendars, checklists, timelines, etc all to ensure I had the complete picture (I will be making these available for you when I complete this program).
I made a commitment to put 15 hours a week into the blogging thing. That may seem like a lot, but I thought, “Why not?” I could half-ass it, or really go for it. I chose full-ass.
Then I mapped out how mush time I would need to devote to the various activities:
- managing the blog
- learning new skills
I SCHEDULED everything in, by the day and by the hour to get the REAL picture of what it would take. That gave me clarity on my direction. More on that later on.
I spent a day or so getting everything ready and on February 24 I started the 90 day journey. I wanted to go from idea to starting as soon as possible, so I got to work. How many projects would you like to start, but are waiting until all the pieces are in place?
Not perfect and finished is better than perfect and never finished.
I see too many people just not start something with 1000 excuses why they just can’t. Get real, make a plan, get started. It really is that easy. If you have a project on the back burner, what is to stop you from scheduling five hours a week for 90 days on it? an hour of FOC– USED time each day? Where would that get you?
Let the magic happen
Now, one of the best lessons I have learned throughout my 90 day processes is that you never know what will happen. You just have to do the work. When you just stay focused on the work, you end up creating a new state of reality for yourself, because you get more done and build new skills along the way.
Over the past 87 days, I have had new opportunities present themselves in ways that I did not plan for! But I have been interviewed, taken on new clients, generated some solid income, and had completely new conversations. Just because I did the work.
Also, when people see that you are committed to a process, they can’t help but naturally be drawn to you and want to tap into that magic. So my advice to you is to just work on that three month sprint and see what happens. The goal is not the performance. The goal is the effort.
The real magic is actually your NEW motivation to drive forward. The closer I get to the 90, the more excited I am for the next 90. But that only happens when you do the work. This is the exact time to not let my foot off the gas!
Planning for the next 90 days
Now, as I near to a close THIS 90 day plan, I am already mapping out the next 90 days. I will be launching a series of information products and new ventures. And because I am in this new state of reality I have created, I am in a much better position to action on some of the other goals I had 90 days ago. Those big ideas actually seem much more simple now.
After 180 days, the world will be completely different. Now just imagine what a full year with four 90 day plans would do for you? Four major projects that you tackle that move you to different states of reality each time.
It doesn’t matter what the plan is, but what matters is that you set it and get it done. Can you?
One of the main reasons I want to share with you my story is that you don’t need to think about your goals with the end in mind. Just focus on each day, and your incremental growth.