As we begin the shift from 2016 to 2017, it’s important to take pause for reflection and to review your business performance.
That means addressing some pain points you may have been avoiding all year long.
Here are four strategies to help you put some closure on 2016 with clarity and focus so that you can move forward with a clear vision for 2017.
Strategy 1. Address your biggest pain points of 2016.
What caused you the most grief? Was it a toxic relationship with a client or employee? Was it a lack of automation tools to help you run your business more productively and efficiently? Did you feel like you were in constant overwhelm mode? Not enough sales?
Once you’ve identified the pain points, ask yourself if you have resolved the problem. If so, great – you are taking care of business! Congratulations for addressing a challenging area in your business and bringing a solution to the table.
If the answer is no, read on.
Strategy 2. Prioritize the pain points.
Prioritize your pain points on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being a mild headache and 5 being a migraine. Next, focus on solving the migraines first.
Think of the migraine as your house on fire – you need to put out the fire now!
It’s difficult to address other challenges in your business when you’re dealing with a fire. It’s your biggest obstacle and most likely it’s preventing you from achieving the success you desire.
Strategy 3. Look for solutions with scenario planning.
Take some time to dig deep by researching solutions using the Internet, a book, a workshop, or an online course.
Collaborate on problem-solving with a mentor, coach, or team member. Commit to getting this problem resolved with a high-level plan of action.
If you want to dive even deeper into solutions, you might want to consider scenario planning.
Scenario planning is the process of visualizing different solutions to a problem. It involves brainstorming on various scenarios or outcomes based on hypothetical variables, such as people and resources, for example.
By playing out each scenario, it empowers you to visualize each outcome or result rather than “shooting from the hip” or “winging it.”
The purpose of scenario planning is to address the pain point and come up with a plan to resolve it so that you can move your business forward in 2017 with a clean slate.
Next, rinse and repeat with each pain point, starting with the migraines and working your way to the mild headaches.
Strategy 4. Acknowledge all your successes from 2016.
Now that you’ve assessed your pain points from 2016 and you’ve put together a high-level plan to resolve them, it’s time turn your attention to your successes.
It’s just as important to acknowledge your accomplishments as it is your challenges.
Just as there are folks who put their head in the sand when the going gets rough, there are folks who don’t take time to recognize their achievements.
It is imperative that you take time to reflect and acknowledge your successes. You must do this for the purpose of reinforcing the decisions and behaviors that were responsible for your victories!
By doing so, you honor your wisdom and brilliance, which should never be dismissed, but rather celebrated. The ritual act of celebrating your accomplishments is critical to building momentum toward your vision.
Bonus Strategy: Never underestimate the power of planning.
When you put the brakes on your business and take time to plan, it empowers you to show up in a more conscious way. It mobilizes you to manifest your dreams by setting clear and purposeful intentions. It sets you up for success by being proactive rather than reactive.
I encourage you to hit the pause button in your business and come up with a plan for all the things you want to accomplish in the upcoming year.
I’ve written a book on planning called How To Turn Your Purpose and Passion Into a Plan of Action – In 5 Easy Steps. In this book, I offer a free 30-minute planning session to help you get started.