Don’t Take Another Step Until You Ask Yourself These Two Key Questions

Written by: Samantha Touchais, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

I am currently sitting down to plan out the rest of December and the first quarter of next year for my business. I have already done this process, but I have been feeling overwhelmed with the amount of work I’ve given myself to do for the next couple of weeks, and I am getting to the point where I can’t see the forest for the trees.

I have a huge list of things to get done, and I have three major goals that I am aiming for in the first quarter of next year. Each of those goals individually is a full-time job in itself. Yet, I have decided to aim for all three in my usual eternally optimistic fashion and believe I can achieve it.

I like to encourage others to push themselves out of their comfort zone, and I believe that goals should be stretching. But I have learned a very important lesson over my years in business, and I would like to share it with you now.

"There is no point in setting a goal when you don’t understand its purpose."

Goals should feed into the overarching success you have planned for yourself and your business. If you are anything like me, you end up with a big ‘to do’ list, knowing that each thing in its own right will contribute to the business, but then do not know where to start. Instead of taking action and seeing those results, you keep finding more and more things to add to the list. This leads to overwhelm for me, as I see one big list of important things to do and realize that I do not have the time to do them all right now. This is where prioritization of goals comes into play, which can be achieved via two simple but very effective questions.

The two key questions to ask yourself during any planning session.

There are two questions I have asked myself today, which have not only helped with the overwhelm but have helped me gain clarity on the next steps that I need to take for my business.

The first question is this:

1. What is most important to me right now?

There is no right or wrong answer to this question, and it is obviously very personal but think about what you will be most satisfied with achieving and then view your goals and tasks through that lens. Perhaps you want to focus on bringing in more income to your business in the short term. Perhaps you want to focus on building your personal brand. Maybe you need to increase the credibility you want to build up around yourself and your business, or perhaps you need to create more content and assets to use in social media and for your email list.

While all of those areas will be important for building a business and bringing you success, each of them requires different actions. There may, of course, be some overlap, but they are different goals that, although complementary, will require you to plan differently and accordingly. This question has really helped me clarify what I need to be doing over the next couple of weeks into January.

The second question that has really helped me today is:

2. What is going to have the biggest impact on my business?

The way I have handled this question is to break my tasks into short and medium-term. I have a coaching business, and so I must continue to connect with new and fresh audiences all the time while remaining loyal to my current audience. The biggest impact for me comes from taking on a new client, so I will now view my action list through that lens.

How are you going to break your To-Do list down? What steps can you take now that will impact your business in the short and medium-term? By getting clear, you get in control, which is the best feeling at the end of a long and difficult year.