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Posts Tagged ‘reflection’

Celebrating + Stretching

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

Hiker cheering. Woman hiking cheerful with arms stretched screaming of joy on top of mountain. Beautiful sporty mixed ethnicity woman outdoor.

The beginning of July. Halfway through the year. I like to take this week and look back at what I have accomplished so far this year and adjust my goals for the year. Why do I like to do this now? Other than it is half-way through the year, this is the week of July 4, Independence Day here in the United States. It is a day meant for celebration – picnics, fireworks and gratitude. I like celebrating where I started and where I am. I like celebrating that I am able to work both independently as an entrepreneur and interdependently with so many wonderful people.

 

How do I take this look back? I ask myself a series of questions, and I have asked my private clients to answer the same questions for their businesses. I look at the questions taking two forms: concrete and introspective. First the concrete questions:

 

1. What was my revenue for the first six months?

2. What were my expenses for the same period?

3. What was my profit?

 

The second series of questions take more thought since I cannot find their answers easily on a spreadsheet.

1. What were my biggest accomplishments these past six months?

2. What were some of the lessons I learned during this time?

3. What were the weak points? What could be improved?

4. What opportunities did I miss?

5. What marketing worked? What else created my wins?

6. How can I use this information going forward for the rest of the year?

 

At this point, I will go back and look at my goals and see how I need to adjust them. Do my existing goals look too easy? Do they stretch me enough? I will update them so I have broader, bigger goals for the rest of the year.

 

I hope you will take the time to do this exercise. If you started the year with written goals that stretched you some, I hope you are surprised and thrilled to see that you need to be stretched some more. What can you do to stretch yourself for the rest of the year? Please share some of what you learned below or on the ICAP Facebook or Google+ pages.

 

 

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Morna McEver is the founder and CEO of the International Association of Creative Arts Professionals where creative arts entrepreneurs craft business success. Her weekly e-zine offers tips, techniques and inspiration to help you craft business success from your creative arts passion. You can sign up for a FREE subscription at http://www.creativeartsprofessional.com.

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Join Me for Some PT?

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

PT? Physical therapy?, you ask. No, for me PT this time means Pause Time, as one of my friends calls it. I have been feeling the rush from the beginning in Houston, following up with contacts that I made, and getting caught up on what was happening in my office in my absence. I know much of it was moving forward on my “to do” list, but was I making any real forward progress? Was I working hard and not remembering what I was trying to do?

In some cases when you are busy and just pushing through the day, you can find you’re never really getting anywhere. You really need to take time to know where you are and where you are going to make real progress.

In addition to how I feel with all the post-trade-show work, I can see this with the distractions from social media. Who among us does not get lost in Pinterest or Instagram and then ask what progress is really being made?

Part of the problem is that we are keeping our minds so active getting our work done or moving to the next task, that we are not taking truly inspired action. That is because we are not taking the time to reflect on where we are and where we want to go.

Enter Pause Time, a time for stillness and reflection. Take some time to be still, whether that is in the garden (if it is still warm where you are) or in a quiet room overlooking the garden. Then in that space of quiet, take to time to just be and then reflect on where you are and where you are going. Do this in a space that is not your office. (Choose a place without distractions.)

Join me in Pause Time. Find inspired action.

Here is a quote I like that reminds me that the stillness and reflection providing answers, or inspired actions.

“Whenever there is stillness there is the still small voice, God’s speaking from the whirlwind, nature’s old song, and dance…”
Annie Dillard

Please share your thoughts on PT below this blog.

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