Business owners who need to work in their business, especially in the beginning, can easily become overwhelmed with the tasks they must complete. There may be limited ways they can delegate as the to-do list looms in front of them.

Life is already over-scheduled. When we find a down moment, we look around and wonder what we forgot to complete.

As someone who was the queen of the checklist and a woman who could NOT abide the same items moving forward on that list from day to day, I had to figure out a way to breathe.

how to sharpen your focusI started to ask myself:

  • What are our priorities?
  • Does this need to be done today?
  • Does it need to be done at all?
  • Is this helpful to anyone?
  • Does it help us reach our goals?

Goals. A place to set your eyes upon in the future. Knowing what we are ultimately working toward made something click within me that made all of the other distractions and noise fall away.

We started with a 10 year plan, then a 3 year, then 1 year. From this we were able to plan out the next 4 quarters. It took a little work and thought to get it together, so now that there is a plan, finding our priorities is easy. Focused. Determined.

There are many, many things we need to get done. But do they ALL need to be done today? Or, even this month? No, and that’s okay. It doesn’t make sense to try to shove it all together just for the sake of checking it off a list. As tasks are completed, I am confident that they were important and contribute to moving us ever forward.

In your business plan there are financials, marketing, networking, sales, recruiting, hiring, managing, communication, strategy, bookkeeping – I could fill pages. But ask yourself, “What do I ultimately want out of this? What does this look like in 10 years? In 3? In 1?” Chances are that this quarter might be the one where you hire some help, perfect your newsletter, and streamline your quarterly process. Or, your focus may be on finding a rewarding Chamber or Leads group and implementing your poster program.

Yes, there are still odds and ends that need to be done as part of the everyday, but with a written and focused list of priorities, and when the distractions threaten to take over, you will be able to steer back to your lane, FOCUS and execute.

Written by: Tricia Petteys – Founder, EVP Franchise Operations