Using Winter to prepare for Spring
People and business go through seasons. I am aware of areas like the deep- south, where people even plan for a rather quiet time in terms of local and trans-local visitors.
What can you do if you are going through a quiet time in your business? Perhaps the traction matches the season with little growth and a general “hibernation” of business
So we are officially in the middle of winter. The cold weather seems to get into every nook and cranny. Yet, in a relatively short while, we will be in short sleeve shirts, enjoying the spring/summer. It is also the time of spring cleaning. Here’s a definition.
The most common usage of spring cleaning refers to the yearly act of cleaning a house from top to bottom which would take place in the first warm days of the year typically in spring, hence the name. However it has also come to be synonymous with any kind of heavy duty cleaning or organizing enterprise. A person who gets their affairs in order before an audit or inspection could be said to be doing some spring cleaning.
As August/September approaches, many people get in gear for “spring cleaning.” While physically cleaning your house or office is always a good idea, I suggest you also make time this season for cleaning up your actions and behaviours.
- Start today. Studies have shown that you must practice new skills for 21 days to develop a new pattern. It will take about 100 days for a new pattern to become an automatic habit.
- Choose your changes. Pick two or three attitude adjustments you want to master during this Spring Cleaning period. Make a decision to change an action or behaviour, establish a new way of performing a task, or complete something you’ve always meant to do but never quite put into practice.
- Make a list. Writing down your Spring Cleaning goals will reinforce your decision. Find creative ways to remind yourself of what you’ve pledged to work on for the next three months: Keep the list visible on your desk, on the refrigerator, or on your bulletin board as a constant guide. Write your goals on sticky notes and place the notes on your August-December calendars. Code your computer calendar to remind you of your Spring Cleaning commitments on various days for the next 12 weeks.
- Do it. Once you’ve identified your Spring Cleaning goals, put new skills into action immediately in order to better your chances of making a permanent change in your behaviour. Studies indicate that 66% of a message is forgotten in 24 hours and that it takes 8 days of constant reminding for 99% of a message to be retained in 30 days.
- Think positive. It is easy to slip away from new habits. As Sir Walter Scott said so accurately, “Success or failure is caused more by mental attitude than by mental capacity.”
- Make a new model. We all need to eliminate trash lying around. Whether your goal is better managing physical paperwork or wiping out mental “head trash,” Spring Cleaning will clear a path to success. Every attitude adjustment you make will have a positive impact on your life. (We are busy sifting through old financial/other files as I write this!)
The art of changing yourself requires the substituting of new habits for old. You mould your character and your future by your thoughts and acts. You cannot climb uphill by thinking downhill thoughts. You must change your mind to change your world. Make yourself do what needs to be done. Wilfred Petersen
Building strong businesses, led by resilient entrepreneurs.
Have a fruitful week