There are those who love planning and those who don’t.
For planners (like me!), brain-dumping your must-dos onto a calendar and then being able to cross them off with a satisfying checkmark has the same feeling of accomplishment as when Rocky runs up the steps in Philly.
Now, before all you plan-lovers out there get smug about how you color code all your activities and decorate them with washi tape, you must admit, we Planners have a DARK SIDE.
It’s so embarrassing, you don’t want to admit it to others…or even yourself!
A Planner’s Dark Secret:
Those who love to plan can get so busy writing down PERFECT plans, that they never actually DO them.
If you’re a Planner, you know it’s true! There are typically two reasons for this:
1. We think we can pack more into a day than we actually can.
2. We want the plan to be perfect before acting on it.
The problem with both of these issues, is we end up feeling unaccomplished!
A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week. –George S. Patton
In a minute, I’ll get to what has helped me move from a PLANNER to a DOER.
But first, let’s talk about those who don’t like to plan…
Are you the free-spirit type? Maybe you think planning will restrict your spontaneity, make you less creative-in-the-moment or tie you down.
The problem Non-Planners have is keeping on top of what needs to be done and having a blueprint of the most effective plan of action to get things accomplished.
Listen, we all have a million things on our minds, and unless you have some super brain cataloging power, you will forget stuff….unless you write it down!
Simple to-do lists aside, if you’re a Non-Planner and you’re thinking of doing something big, like starting or up-leveling a business, it simply isn’t going to happen. #bubbleburst
There are simply too many moving parts!
Without a clear plan, you’re going to be finished before you even start.
If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail! –Benjamin Franklin
But, even if are the type who thinks planning is as exciting as peeling potatoes, there’s still hope! You only need a few simple tools, a bit of dedicated time, and a slight attitude shift.
Planning is not just about writing things down; it’s about how to plan your day for success!
I’ve always loved planning, but it’s taken me awhile to find the best way to balance making plans (the Planners strength), with being flexible when necessary (the Non-Planners strength) and most importantly, EXECUTION!
What’s worked for me is a combination of two methods:
The Passion Planner
What I love about the Passion Planner, is the planning method that creator Angelia Trinidad outlines that makes it easy to set and more importantly, ACHIEVE, your goals.
Basically, it’s the method of reverse engineering. You set your big lofty goal(s), which by itself, can appear completely overwhelming.
Ex: DIY build your WordPress website.
That’s a goal with many parts and tangents, that you could write down in your planner for a year and never even know where to start!
But with the Passion Planner method, after you write your big goal, you write each part that is needed to achieve it.
If you have kids, think of it like laying out all the Lego pieces (or Ikea parts!) before you try to start building what you see on the cover of the box!
Using the same example of building your website, you would need to do smaller goals like, buy a domain, upload WordPress, choose a theme, customize your theme, etc, etc, etc.
Then each of these smaller goals is prioritized by order (ex: there’s no point in shopping themes, until you’ve bought your domain) and then scheduled INTO the calendar.
By breaking down giant goals into a series of little steps, things get DONE!
The 90 Day Year
Todd Herman is the creator of this program that helps you tackle your goals that might otherwise take a year, into a quick 90 turn around.
Now, to be upfront, I have not purchased the 90 Day Year program itself, but Todd Herman’s free videos laid it out enough for me to apply his teaching and have excellent results.
Also, I think his method would be better suited to people who already have a business going, not start-ups or newbies (unless you’ve started a business before).
In our case, by using Herman’s 90 Day Year strategies, we were able to significantly uplevel our DanceSport Place.com business in its third year.
It also helped me better organize my plan for my doTerra business and personal brand, especially since running two businesses (along with the rest of my life!) is a major challenge.
What I love about the 90 Day Year, is it cuts through the crap and distraction that sucks us away from our goals. In this fast-paced world, attention spans are short and technology moves at lightening speed. If you want to capture the market and get results, you need to move fast, too!
Plus, the faster you start hitting your goals, the faster you start making money (or getting fit or reducing debt, etc.) and the more pumped you get to keep going!
As Gary Vaynerchuk says,
It’s not just about working harder, you also need to work faster.
The 90 Day Year plan helps you do both!
Essential Oils for Motivation
Of course, I have to work some essential oils into this post!
On those days when I look at my schedule and wish I could erase it all and go back to bed, it’s oils to the rescue.
There are my favorite oils for igniting inspiration and promoting perspiration:
1. Peppermint: has been proven time and again in studies (ref 1.). to Rub 1-2 drops in your hands and inhale deeply. Rub excess onto the back of your neck. Diffuse near your workspace.
2. Wild Orange: citrus oils are uplifting and energizing. (ref 2.). Rub 1-2 drops in your hands and inhale deeply, or diffuse near your workspace.
Blend with Peppermint for extra motivation!
3. Douglas Fir & Spearmint: wood oils in general, are very grounding mentally. Douglas Fir is no different, helping you buckle down and focus.
I like to mix it with Spearmint, which is softer than Peppermint, but still has an energizing spark.
Blend these two oils in a diffuser near your workspace.
4. Passion: without passion, there’s nothing to do but binge on Netflix! Forget that!
Get your passion back with this blend from doTerra’s Emotional Aromatherapy line, which includes spices and herbs to rev up your desire (ref. 3.).
Rub 2 drops on your wrists and back of neck, or diffuse near your workspace, and get back to it!
You’ve got your pencils sharpened and are ready to power schedule your dreams,
but you need some motivation in a drop!
How to Plan Your Day…and Follow Through!
Even now that I’ve got my planning mojo in a pretty good routine, I still catch myself tempted to fall back into my old ways.
Like, when I’m getting dressed in the morning and toss my PJs into the laundry basket piled high, my first instinct is to start the wash. But, I know if I get off my PLAN, the entire morning will be spent puttering around the house, and not getting the things I REALLY need to do, done.
After all, that laundry is not going ANYWHERE.
See, your day doesn’t get planned the morning it starts—it’s too late then!
Here’s the formula for how to plan your day AND follow through:
- set up your 90 Day Year plan (the Masterplan)
- break it into big goals (weekly)
- reverse engineer into smaller parts and schedule into the Passion Planner
- hit the ground running for the next day, by reviewing your planner each night before bed
- oil up throughout the day to stay motivated and on task! 😉
Bonus Tip: things that absolutely require your immediate attention are going to come up from time to time. Be honest with yourself about what truly is immediate enough to require you to change the plan (your kids are home sick) and what isn’t (the big ol’ pile of laundry)
A Poor Workman Blames His Tools
Now, if you’ve already got a pile of planners sitting on your desk and have spent hours “researching” how to goal-set, you’ve got to get honest with yourself. There is no Holy Grail of planners. In fact, the one on your desk is perfectly fine.
Buying a planner or watching a video on a planning method or having an essential oil sit on your shelf, isn’t going to make things happen.
You’ve got to USE the tools! No one else can do it for you, and no one else cares if you do it or not! #realitycheck
At the end of the day, having the right tools makes things easier, but even great tools are useless in the hands of the lazy.
So, whether you’re a Planner or a Non-Planner doesn’t mean you’ll be successful or not.
Making each day count is the result of VISION (the fun, imagining part!) and EXECUTION (the blood, sweat and tears).
Put a little extra effort into the planning, and then put a TON of effort into the execution to get where you want to go.
Create a definite plan for carrying out your desire and begin at once, whether you are ready or not, to put this plan into action. –Napoleon Hill