5 Myths About Working with A Virtual Assistant

I love October! I love Fall! I love Halloween!

It’s true! Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. It falls close to my birthday, so it’s a good excuse to throw a big party. In years past, we’ve thrown theme parties and invite everyone to party in their best costume. It’s alway so much fun and for one night, we get to feel like kids again!

With halloween coming around the corner, this blog will have a two-fold purpose.

  • To debunk 5 myths about Virtual Assistants
  • Give you some great costume ideas!

costumes

You’re welcome!

Along with dressing up and trick or treating, one of the fun things people like to do every October is explore myths and old legends. While I don’t spend my time trying to determine the fact or fiction of myths and legends, there is one area that I am an expert in. The field of Virtual Assistants.

There are many myths surrounding this line of work, so why not now, while we’re busy researching old tales to debunk some myths about Virtual Assistants.

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MYTH #1: Anyone can be a VA.

Being a Virtual Assistant isn’t for the weak. I don’t say this because I am one, I say this because it’s true. You have to have the chops to hang in with some of the top entrepreneurs in the business. It’s important to have the skills and drive to make it in this field.

MYTH #2: A Virtual Assistant can do it all.

While a Virtual Assistant can do almost anything, one Virtual Assistant can’t do it all. We’d all love to find that perfect unicorn that knows every program and tool available. However, that just isn’t the case. Many VAs specialize in specific areas… Project Management, Social Media, Sales Funnels, Bookkeeping. It’s rare to find one person that can do it all.

MYTH #3: You can’t communicate as well when you’re virtual.

This may seem like an absolute truth, but I’m here to tell you that is 100% wrong. Most of us have worked in the corporate world, sharing cubicle walls with co-workers. While you aren’t physically in the same room, technology has given us so many options when it comes to communication. Slack, Zoom, Skype, good old fashioned phone calls. There isn’t an excuse big enough to keep you from communicating with your VA. Make it a priority and they may even become your friend, confidant and yes, even your therapist!

MYTH #4: A VA can’t do the same things that a “Normal” assistant can do.

The only thing a VA can’t do is bring you coffee. Though it may look a little different, a Virtual Assistant can manage the same tasks as a traditional assistant. One benefit to hiring a Virtual Assistant is that you aren’t limited strictly to applicants in your area. At Priority VA, we have a team of 50+ VAs, located all of the United States. Each VA is skilled and able to offer high level service to their clients, regardless of their location. Ah, the beauty of living in a tech savvy 2016!

MYTH #5: You need to hire someone full time.

Hiring a new employee for a full 40 hours a week seems overwhelming. Don’t limit yourself to the traditional mindset of 40 hours a week. Do what is best for you! A large majority of clients want (and need!) to start out small with their VA. You can start with as little as 20 hours per month and get high level support from Virtual Assistants. As your business grows, you can adjust the amount of support that you need, but for now start small.

Have you considered hiring a VA, but still have questions? I’m happy to debunk any myths that you’ve heard about working virtually. Simply complete this form and my team will be in touch with the next steps to hiring a Virtual Assistant.

The Value Of A Mastermind

Think back to when you were a teenager.

Now think about the advice you received from the adults around you.

Most likely, a lot of the advice was [not so warmly] received with an eye roll and a “yeah, whatever”, but looking back, that advice was like little golden nuggets that still ring true today.

One of my favorites is, “Choose your friends wisely”.

Renowned businessman, Jim Rohn, said, You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”.

Jim so eloquently transitioned the advice given to me early on in my life to give me perspective in my business life.

Earlier this year, I joined a Mastermind Group. A group of people that are experiencing the same challenges and triumphs that I face everyday in my business. While we are each in different niches and phases in our businesses, we are there for each other. Helping each other grow, giving each other advice and new perspectives in such an encouraging way! It’s safe to say that we have seen each other at our worst and at our best.

Last week, my husband and I spent a couple of days with our mastermind group.

We spent 48 hours brainstorming, sitting in hot seats and exploring the zip lines of Tennessee and nearly plummeting to my death….  I’ll tell you about it later, but suffice it to say that another reason to have a mastermind group is that they pray for you when you’re scared out of your mind, flying straight toward a tree. My husband saved me before becoming one with said tree, so I’m safe and have a great story to tell!

While I sat in a room with my peers, the quote from Jim, popped into my head. I looked at the people I was surrounded by and I felt good about my decision.

If I’m the average of these brilliant people, then I’m doing really well! I never want to be the smartest person in the room, because I want to continue to learn and grow. I love learning from others and this group has pushed me and I’m forever grateful!

Are you curious about joining a mastermind group? You have some options.

I usually see three styles when it comes to mastermind groups.

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First, there are the temporary groups.
The short term style groups may come as an extra bonus when you buy a product. Whether it’s to learn more about list building or social media, often time experts will offer special bonus packages that include mastermind weekends. Times for you to connect with other members and brainstorm your ideas. It’s a great place to start and so incredibly valuable.

Second, are the expert led masterminds. 
This style of mastermind is usually led by an expert and is traditionally organized by them. Often times, you get access to a member’s area, private facebook groups, weekly calls and live events. This one is a little more hands on and much like the mastermind that I’m a part of. To be honest, I didn’t think that I would be able to carve out time for a weekly call with my mastermind, but I decided to make time and it has been the best decision I could have made. We may not always see eye to eye, but the value and insight they have brought to my life and my business are invaluable!

Last, but certainly not least are the ongoing mastermind groups.
The people who start out in a mastermind, make connections and quickly figure out that they can’t do it alone. They need people in their corner to push them along to greatness. This one may take a little more organizing on your part, but it’s so worth it! Simply choose the people that you want to surround yourself with, rockstars in their fields, and make it happen. Schedule calls and trips, just as you would in a traditional, expert led mastermind, but be intentional with this. It’s easy for it to become a social club as opposed to a business support group. Don’t let it become too casual and forget that you’re there to grow your businesses.


Are you ready to join a mastermind? Don’t wait! I can’t begin to tell you the value that each person in my mastermind group has brought to me.

If you’re wanting to grow your business, it is something that you NEED to do. Joining a mastermind will 100% change your life for the better.

If you could be in a mastermind with anyone, who would it be?

P.S. For real, they were on the ground praying for me when I was ziplining. How cool is that?!

 

Are You Ready For A VA?

Starting a business is exciting! We’ve heard the saying “If you can believe it, you can achieve it”.

While that saying is true, I’m a firm believer that you won’t achieve ALL of your goals on your own. Sure, you can start building your audience, grow your email list and begin creating your product, but how do you know when you’re ready to hire a virtual assistant?

A Virtual Assistant is so much more than someone that checks your email and schedules a flight here and there. No sir-y! The world of VAs has expanded into so many facets of the business world.

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So, how do you know when you’re ready to hire a VA?

Step One: Evaluate your work load.

Where are you spending most of your time?

Write down every minute that you are spending on your business. This will allow you to budget your time . If you’re “overspending” in one or more areas, it’s probably time to enlist help.

The goal of a Virtual Assistant is to lighten your workload. Once you’re free to do what you do best, you’ll see the return on your investment.

Step Two: Evaluate your income.

This one is hard for me, because I don’t like to talk numbers. Math makes my head hurt, which is why hiring an accountant was one of my best decisions!

It’s important that you don’t avoid this piece. It may not be easy, but take some time to evaluate where you’re at financially. This will determine the level of VA that you’re able to hire.

I’ve designed my company to create long lasting working relationships, so if you’re in the market to hire a VA for an indefinitely, then it’s important to know that you have a steady stream of income so that you don’t panic at the first of each month, worrying that the money won’t be there.

In some instances, you can hire a VA for specific projects. Committing to, say a 3 month project, may be a little easier for you to chew. I get it!

Whatever your expense level, be sure that you are willing to commit to the monthly investment.

You VA is totally worth it!

Step Three: Get ready to let go.

It’s more than a Disney song! You have to prepare yourself for this part!

Many clients that I talk to are initially eager to pass the reigns over to someone completely capable. However, in reality, it isn’t that simple! I know, because I’m an entrepreneur just like you! It’s difficult to give someone control over your baby business.

Even though it’s difficult, what I can tell you is that when you relinquish control into the capable hands of someone else, you will flourish! You’ll feel the sweet relief of lost time, now found again. Suddenly, the things you didn’t have time for are now back on your calendar.

Allowing a VA to work within their expertise gives you the ability to feel creative again.

Who knows, you may come up with 3 new product ideas within a day!

So, are you ready to hire a VA?

After you’ve evaluated your business, contact my team! We would love to learn more about your business and how we can serve you!

Let’s All Be Productive

Not so long ago, I was out of state on a business trip. While I was out traveling across the country with my client, my husband was home cooking up a plan!

A plan that was going to make my day!! Curious yet?! Hang on, I’m getting there!

One of my love languages is gifts. Giving gifts, getting gifts… all of it!

My husband knows this, so while I had vacated the premises, he decided to redecorate my office. I’m not talking about a new picture or a nice scented candle. No way! He went all out. He painted, he reorganized and my favorite of all… he bought me a new desk!

Not just any old desk, he bought me a stand up desk!

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I’ve been eyeing the stand up desk for a while now because, let’s face it, my job is sedentary and I need to increase my circulation a whole lot more than I do.

What I discovered after a week with this desk is that not only am I standing more (obviously!), but I’m so much more productive. I’m checking off tasks, answering emails, ending world hunger….well, maybe not that last one, but you get my point! I feel like a ninja!

I began to think of all of the other ways I can increase my productivity.

You may not have access to a stand up desk, but I thought I’d share a few other productivity ideas with you.

 

Take a brain break

Let’s start with something simple. So simple if fact, we’re taking is back to the kindergarten years. Research has shown that children are more productive in school when they take what is called “brain breaks”. The good new is, this isn’t just for children!

Taking a brain break is simply taking a step back and relaxing your brain. If you go full speed for 6 hours straight, you are going to fizzle out. You won’t be nearly as productive as someone that peppers in 10 minute breaks throughout their day. It could be something as small as walking to the mailbox or refilling your coffee cup. Taking brain breaks is sure to increase your productivity.

Eat something

I don’t understand those people that say “Oh, I forgot to eat lunch”. I may forget a few things here and there, but I never forget to eat lunch!

I have recently started a new fitness program. Along with exercise, I’m also focusing on my food intake. I’m sure you’ve heard coaches say that you have to think of food as fuel. It’s so true!

When I neglect to put gas in my car and I’ve been staring at that little orange light like it’s a new accessory, you’ll find me sitting along I-70, wishing that I would have taken the extra five minutes to put fuel in my car.

This rule applies to eating. If you don’t eat, you’ll run out of steam (hopefully, not on the side of the road!) and will slow down productivity. Plus, you’ll be nicer when you aren’t #hangry!

Track your time

This one if fascinating! If you’ve never tracked your time before, I’m going to challenge you to track your time this week.

You may think that you’re the most productive person in the world, but have you stopped to look at where you’re spending your time? Grab a journal and write down everything you do for one week. You’ll be surprised how many times you end up mindlessly browsing Facebook when all you meant to was check your page insights.

Track your time for one week and let me know how many extra hours you managed to find.

Each of these ideas individually will bring you increase your productivity.

The whole gamut and “Look Out World!”.

What are your favorite productivity tools?

Somebody Testify

Last week I was on a call with a potential team member. She asked how we get new clients. It was such a great question and as I was answering her, I began to think about our clients.

We have a variety of ways that we reach new clients. There are the Facebook Ads and Opt-ins that we run, just like any other online business. However, I have to say that our number one form of recruiting new clients is by testimonials.

Nothing excites me more than when I log into my inbox and see an email from a stranger saying, “My friend hired a VA through your company and she SWEARS that I can’t live without one! Where do I sign up?!”.

This is my absolute favorite form of advertisement. Not because it’s cost effective.. Eh-hem… free, but because my clients are truly seeing the value that a Virtual Assistant brings them.

How do you maintain this word of mouth system? Here are a few ideas to help you along the way.

Listen to the Wave

Collect Testimonials.

I’ve learned through the years that we are all in this together. I’ve been working on a website update and one of the features I’d like to have is a testimonial page. Not for the “toot my own horn” benefit (although it’s nice to see!), but it allows newcomers to see the value in my team.

The hardest part is the ask. This is where some people jump ship and think to themselves “My client is too busy. I don’t even know if they’ll have time.”. Honestly, it isn’t an inconvenience for most. All it takes from you is a simple email asking your clients to write a quick testimonial. You’ll be amazed when your inbox is flooded with words about your business.

Take time to Network.

When you run a business online, it’s easy to tuck yourself away in your bat cave and only come out when the groceries are running low. I say “NO WAY”!

Decide to blow that popsicle stand of yours and see some faces.

Take baby steps. Start out with an online mastermind group or an entrepreneur support group that you found online. Whatever it is, put your face out there. You have a lot to offer to the world, but no one will know it if you keep it locked away.

Build Relationships.

This is my absolute favorite part of business! The relationship piece.

I’ve been in business for quite some time now and I can’t begin to tell you how many wonderful people I’ve met along the way. I’ve believed in some of them so much that I’ve purchased their products or joined one of their courses, just so I could learn from them.

There are times when a client that offers a program that is the complete opposite of my interests. However, I’m still interested in THEM.

Each client is a person and they are an expert in their field. Whether that field is something I’ve heard of or not. I want to know how it’s going with them, so I check in. I find out from their VA how the launch went. I’ve had instances where a client won an award or was featured on a National Television Show. This is my time to send a congratulatory note. Why? Because I truly care.

When you show your clients that you have a vested interest in them as a human being, not just another client on the list, it will speak volumes!

 

Commitment Issues

When I started my business a few years ago, I knew that I was in it for the long haul.

My goal for Priority VA is to create a team that doesn’t run at the first sign of difficulty.

Needless to say, I’m an advocate of say what you mean and mean what you say.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise to me that not everyone shares this value.

I understand there are times when you have a difficult situation but if I’ve learned one thing over times, it’s that through difficult situations, I come out the other side refined and experienced.

In my journey, I’ve met countless people that said they just weren’t successful either working with or serving as a Virtual Assistant. This always peaks my interest! Not only do I like to learn from my own experiences, but I also enjoy hearing about the experiences of others. There is a common theme with my conversations…. commitment issues.

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Commit to commit.

Whether you’re a Virtual Assistant with a new client or an entrepreneur ready to bring on a VA, make the decision to commit. When I’m placing clients, I let everyone know that they should be patient in the first 90 days. You’re figuring out each other’s work style, personalities and where each of you shine. Don’t run when a challenge arises. Stick it out. Work together as a team. It might just be the catalyst you need to see things differently and grow your business. You’ll look back in a year and be grateful that you stayed with your VA!

Commit to communicate.

I know that I talk about communication a lot, but I can’t begin to tell you the importance of good, open lines of communication.

When you don’t communicate, you don’t stay on the same page. Sure you’re working, but are you both working toward the same goal? Scheduling a weekly call and sticking to it will keep you on the same page and moving in the same direction. Working from separate pages can lead to frustration. Frustration that you’ve done hours of work, only to learn that it isn’t needed. Or frustration that you have to push back a launch date because you didn’t relay the ideas in your head to your team.

If you’re a VA, always end your weekly call with “What can I do for you?”. This will give your client the opportunity to give you any final thoughts as you work on your weekly goals.

If you’re a Client, don’t hesitate to share your ideas. Our job as VAs is to find a way for your ideas to come to life! Nothing is too big, too small or too crazy. We’ll give you feedback and find a way to make it happen.

Commit to delegate.

This one is hard!

As an entrepreneur myself, I understand the discipline it take to hand over tasks. As difficult as it may be, I also began to love the extra freedom. Freedom to get a little more creative with my business. Freedom to take lunch to my kids at school. Freedom to shut everything down for a few days and know that everything is taken care of by my team.

Fellow business owner, do yourself a favor and delegate to your VA. I’m in the trenches of Virtual Assistant support along with running my own business. As a VA, there is nothing more satisfying than knowing that your client trusts you with their business. We are ready, willing and able!

Commit to commit. Commit to communication. Commit to delegation.

You’ll be amazed at what you can accomplish together when you’re working together on the same page!

Time is of the Essence

“I wish there were more hours in the day!!”

You’ve heard that sentence spouted out more times than you can count. Sometimes it comes from a colleague, other times it’s from your own mouth.
We all have times where we wish there were more hours in the day, but guess what…. We all have the same 24 hours. If I had a genie in a bottle, that would be my #1 wish!

Since this magical genie is nowhere to be found, I have to decide to be intentional with my time. It isn’t easy. There are a lot of days when I’m working 14 hours and barely step out of my office for food. So, please hear me when I say that I am preachin’ the the choir here!

No one is perfect and we won’t get it 100% right all the time, but I’m willing to give it a try.

Are you?
There are several theories and more self help books that you could ever want on this topic. While I agree that we need to read different opinions, I also think that we can tend to over complicate this issue of time management.

If you struggle with time management, try these three pieces of advice.

Time isof the Essence

1. Set Boundaries

In Henry Cloud’s book, Boundaries, he says:

 “Boundaries define us. They define what is me and what is not me. A boundary shows me where I end and someone else begins, leading me to a sense of ownership. Knowing what I am to own and take responsibility for gives me freedom. ”

I love that! It’s so important to set boundaries, whether personal or professional. Often times, we think of boundaries as being these negative rules. We feel as though we’re being harsh with those around us when we set boundaries, while on the contrary, they are there to give us freedom. Freedom to say “No” when it isn’t right and “Yes” to times when it is right.

We often times take on tasks that aren’t a priority for us (or our client), because we feel like we should. Just because you can do it, doesn’t mean you should do it.  This is so hard for me, but I know it’s important to how I manage my time.

2. Be Intentional

Once you’ve set your boundaries, be intentional. If you decide that the hours between 8:00am and 4:00pm are designated for work, then do just that.

Work your tail off! Be intentional with your time. Build that website, write those blogs, check off your lists and know that with every swoosh of the check mark you are being intentional with your time. Not only are you checking off your to-do list, but you’re ending the day feeling accomplished.

3. Get rid of the guilt

Retraining ourselves to set boundaries isn’t easy. Not for those that we work for and with, but for ourselves. I feel completely guilt ridden when I think I should be working. Let’s make a pact! Let’s choose to ditch the guilt and enjoy our time. After a long day of (intentional) work and I’m playing at the pool with my kids, the last thing I want to think about is email. Do I? Yes, because that’s how I’m wired. I know that my clients are happy that I get to hang out with kids after a hard day of work, in fact they encourage it, so it’s a battle within myself. We’re all just a work in progress, but we’ll get there!

As I said, there are a lot theories on time management and I’m sure many of them are good, but if you’re looking to start small, then start here.

Set boundaries.
Be Intentional.
Ditch the Guilt.

 

Believe In Yourself

If you’ve been around me for any length of time, you know that I believe in people.

Even when it seems crazy, I give people the benefit of the doubt, find the best in others and give second chances. I put a lot of faith in people. I coach them, give them advice and become their cheerleader. I believe it’s how we’re supposed to live and it’s one more way that I get to serve others.

My thought process, however, is a little flawed… I believe in the mission of others, but I don’t always believe in my own mission. At least I didn’t.

Believe
I spent the first couple of years in by business barely keeping my head above water. I left my corporate job to be present with my family and ironically, I was even less present than before. It was as if I was a prisoner chained inside my home office.
I had to find a way out.

The problem was, I was the Warden, the Key Holder and the Judge. If I was going to find a solution. I had to enlist the help of someone that had a better plan. Let’s face it, you can only accomplish so much on your own.

Last year, I watch in anticipation as Todd’s videos rolled out.

I knew that this was the solution.

I was tired!

  • Tired of working 15 hours a day.
  • Tired of hearing my kids play, but still separate from them.
  • Tired of missing out on dinners with friends.
  • Tired of being tired.

Full Transparency
Even though everything Todd said lined up with what I was feeling, there was one thing that I had to do. I had to believe in myself! I had to believe in my mission.

Let me ask you a question.

Do you believe in yourself?

Do you believe in yourself enough to open your mind to the possibility that you can accomplish 365 days in just 90 days? It seems so unattainable, yet it is 100% possible. In Todd’s program, The 90 Day year, he walks your through the process. You aren’t on your own in this!

Remember that old slogan from Loreal, “Because, I’m worth it”?

Do you believe it?

You are worth the investment. You are worth the time. You. Are. Worth. It.

Looking back after 1 year, I am so thankful that I decided to believe in myself and invest in my business. 220% growth!!! This wasn’t accomplished on my own. The content that Todd Herman offers in this program is second to none. He is the coach to beat all coaches! I am forever grateful to him.

Last week, I vacationed with my family. I took naps, I swam with the fish, I played with my kids. How was this possible? Because last year I had enough. Enough imprisonment and enough stress.

Had I not learned from Todd and truly bought into his coaching style and teachings, I wouldn’t have had these experiences.
Take a shot on yourself. Believe in YOUR mission. Believe that you’re worth it.

I could tell you how Todd’s program works for me, but if you’d like to hear it from the man yourself, register here for his upcoming webinar.

Take the first step the the best year of your business.

Because I believe in you and this program so much, I wanted to offer a few bonuses of my own. They are designed to complement the program and give you the traction that you need to accomplish 1 year in 90 days.

Take a chance on you!

Why Taking Time Off Can Be Good For Your Business

I’m sitting on a patio in Ft. Lauderdale Florida watching ocean waves gently roll ashore. It’s 9:00am, and the grandparents are down with the girls at the beach, so I could sleep in. It’s been a glorious few days, off grid and relaxing. Writing this post is the first time I’ve turned on my computer in days. (Shocking, I know!)

Balcony-Inspiration

I don’t do this often enough. This trip has taught me why I should, and I want to share my revelations  with you.

We all know the famous “Work From Wherever” slogan, and while I agree that this is a novel concept, (that makes me want to move to a coast as soon as possible), it’s not quite feasible for all of us. My husband and I have been dreaming about that day for years now, and while still elusive, I know that we will get there one day.

The moniker has had most of us making drastic changes in our businesses to get to that point, we’ll hire the cheapest help we can, to save on expenses, or we’ll take shortcuts to make sales so that we can keep the revenue coming in while saving for the adventure we’ll take one day.

I believe this thinking is flawed. Here’s why:

Taking time off allows you to decompress.

One of the healthiest things I’ve done this trip is NOT think about work. Taking Slack notifications off my phone, turning off Facebook and email reminders for these last few days has been refreshing. I chose to scroll Facebook a few times rather than respond to the endless notifications of being tagged in posts from people needing things. I’ve been able to be fully present with my family and not worry about what’s happening, or not, in my business.

When you’re an entrepreneur, it’s hard to “turn off” work. But taking time off has allowed me to decompress from what can feel like endless stress of being “needed”. We’re all entitled to that, and should schedule time frequently for such off grid extraction from our daily lives.

New Ideas are born when we’re not trying to do a million things at once.

Ever have a brilliant idea in the shower, or in my case, 70ft under water?

The time I’m taking away from my business this week, allows creativity to flow. I’ve been feeling pretty stagnant lately, where I didn’t feel very creative in my business. Working in the 90 Day Year Model, has allowed me to make some amazing strides in our business. I’ve broken the habit of making the same mistakes over and over. I’ve LEARNED from my PAST PERFORMANCE that I need down time in order to get new ideas, and have made changes in my 90 Day Goals to always include down time. I’ve traveled a TON the past couple of months, but it has been mostly for work. As a result, I’ve just been doing the same thing without introducing many new ideas the last few weeks.

The ocean is my happy place, where I can relax, and think. Case in point – I was snorkeling with my family last evening and thought of a new business idea. Not because I was actively thinking about work, but because I was observing my environment (in this case, fish) and thought about their behaviors and how they relate to human behavior.. And BOOM! a new idea flashed into my head and I just giggled through my snorkel at the timing of it all. When we’re able to structure our business and time to not be overwhelmed, our brains are able to process information more fully, which in this case allowed creative ideas to flourish and not get squeezed out by a massive to do list.

The 90 Day Year taught me that the endless amount of goals we could be working on could actually be detrimental to the growth of our business. So, focusing on goals in a different framework, we can stop busting our booties to produce results using a broken model, and actually start accomplish things we want to in our business. Like taking more family trips, creating new revenue streams, or hiring new key players to join our team.

Block and Tackle works for down time, too.

My friend Todd teaches the Block and Tackle method. Because of his training, (which you can find here in his FREE video series on the topic), I’ve been able to structure my work days to focus only on certain activities (Block) and get achieve my goals faster, and with more excellence than before (Tackle). He teaches all about how to do this in the 90 Day Year which he breaks down in the third of his video series, out today.

Applied to down time, the framework looks like this:

Saturday – Travel Day

Sunday – Dive planning, Snorkel Trip and relaxing Beach Day

Monday – Grandparent Day, relationship building and game day

Tuesday – Open No plans to allow for free flow activity

Wednesday  – Adventure Day, Diving and Parasailing
Thursday – Tourist Day; local activities centered around the culture of the area, Fancy Dinner

Friday – Adventure Day, Diving all day

Saturday – Travel Day

Do you see what we did there? We blocked our activities so there aren’t endless switches, from wet bathing suits to dry clothes. We’re not going from diving to dinner parties. We’re keeping our “goals” in chunks, (block) so we’re more likely to have success in achieving them (tackle).
We even allowed for an “open” day, not structured or scheduled so we can do random fun things that pop up (distractions) and not feel overwhelmed that we couldn’t fit them in (or take the call from the client that was not on our schedule previously).

The frameworks I’ve learned and implemented in my business have got me to where I am right now – on the beach, whipping up a blog post, and then offline to spend time with my family. I honestly don’t think I would have gotten here without implementing some important changes in my business.

I wouldn’t have known how to fix what was broken, without Todd. I thought everyone was working and living like I was while trying to build a business. I felt so broken, like I was doing something “wrong” because I was working SO dang hard, but not seeing the results I knew were possible. I had no idea that it wasn’t ME that was broken. It was the SYSTEM I was working in. Changes to that system resulted in changes in my thinking, and in my execution. And now, I have a business that is thriving, a marriage that is in sync and a family that is healing from all my “frantic hustle” that led to lots of frustration.

All because I changed the model.

And you can, too. Check out this video (which is my FAVORITE in the series) and learn how YOU can implement a new framework and implement a new way of looking at an old problem…and perhaps you too will be “off grid” as much as you’d like, with a business that still works while you don’t. You can do this. Todd can show you how.

I’m off to play games with the grandparents. Have a great week!

 

What it Really Takes To Achieve Great Things

I was on a hike three miles into Lost Creek Wilderness, in the Colorado Mountains- a sentimental family camping spot my husband had spent summers at with his father, just as his father had with grandpa before him. And now, it was our turn to take the girls backpacking.

I’m a big girl, and while I’m not diva in any way, the idea of getting nasty dirty smelly for days with 3 little girls and a dog did not appeal to me. But, being the loving wife that I am (ha!) I agreed to this nonsense and decided to come along. Let’s be honest, I was sure someone would get hurt and I’d need to be there to at least try and seek help.

We packed our dehydrated desserts (don’t bother, they are gross!), fishing poles, backpacks and camping gear into what felt like 80 pound packs and decided to take a run at creating our own family memories.

3 miles. Uphill. Downhill. Through ravines, rockslides, wasps nests and rivers  –  literally dragging downed trees to make a bridge, this adventure was way more than I bargained for. My family’s version of camping including driving to a spot, backing up, unpacking the tent and roasting marshmallows. This was some quest to achieve greatness in our family, and I had no clue what I was in for. Falling down the side of a mountain and scraping my leg to pieces was not in my plans.

The Decision I Had To Make

There were multiple pee breaks, much whining, fits of crying, and lots of murmured curse words (all from me, not my kids!)… and we were only halfway in. It was a nightmare for all around me. I was tired, and all I kept thinking was, “Keep Moving”. Keep moving.

Barber family memories
See everyone else smiling? I could have just died right there…

I’d force myself to set micro-goals like “make it to that rock”, or “just get down to that tree” and then I’d reward myself with a glance back at how far I’d come. I wanted to quit. Badly.

I was reminded of something my coach and mentor, Todd Herman said:

It sometimes seems that the greatest change can occur almost at the time when you’re ready to give up and quit.

I dug deep, and eventually, I made it to our destination, in tact and massively proud that I’d accomplished something that for me, was really hard.

That trip was crazy, and one I swore I’d never make again… until I was day three into our trip and having the time of my life, fishing with my kids, exploring caves and undoubtedly creating memories they’d cherish.

It felt a lot like starting a business to me…

…with the ups and downs, the falls, the steep climb to getting traction, the rejection. The highs of accomplishing goals, the steadiness when things are going well, and what felt like a fall when I’d miss the mark.

It’s much like this graphic, from Todd (who has a brand new video series out today) and clearly shows what could be both my business, and my personal life.

What it really takes to achieve great things
For anyone starting a business, keep going friend. Todd can show you how to navigate this mess.

What We Don’t Want To Think About

That trip was fun. SO much fun. However… after all the day hikes of exploration, fire building (I build a darn good fire, ya’ll) and s’mores consumption – there was something more that had to be done.

I had to hike back out. Yes, the packs were lighter and I was rested from the relaxing time away from my iPhone, but the fact remained. I had to get back out. 3 more daunting, sweaty miles of uphill treks, switchbacks and the all too scary river crossing (especially fun when the river washed out our bridge making us have to start over!).

So again, I looked up that mountain and began the long walk out. Multiple times, I stopped, to pant, guzzle water, moan and adjust my pack and talk myself into finishing. Once again, I said “Keep Moving” at each stage of the journey.

In Life and In Business, Keep Moving. Keep Moving.

The hike out didn’t take nearly as long, once I found my rhythm, save for the fact that we ran out of water and I thought we were all going to die (melodramatic, I know – but it’s the same way I used to act when a client would leave our business, too).

Just like the cadence of a good hike, it takes some getting used to, this entrepreneur gig… and there are times when I just wanted to sit on a rock and cry.

Until I found the 90 Day Year.

If you’ve not heard of The 90 Day Year, let me introduce you. It’s the most comprehensive business building program I’ve ever seen. Created by Todd Herman, a Peak Performance Coach to world class athletes including Olympians, NFL and NHL stars as well as Fortune 100 CEO’s.

Harvard Researchers have studied his methods to validate the claims he makes in his no BS framework. Clearly, this guy knows his stuff and goes out of his way to ensure third parties can back him up.

It’s the best model I’ve found for achieving great things, and it’s helped me to implement the framework with obstacles in my “real life” outside of owning a business, too.  Yes, even tackling the beloved family camping trip up the mountain.

Truth is, we all have our mountains, and in order to achieve greatness in anything, we have to push through:
when we’re confused,
when we’re blindsided by setbacks,
…overcome by obstacles we didn’t think we’d face.
It’s going to be okay.

Keep Moving.

Find a mentor to walk you through the hard times, so you can stay focused on only the next goal and celebrate – looking back at how far you’ve come…

Then pack your gear for the next goal ahead.

This mountain for us, folks, never has a summit. That took me way longer than it should to learn that.

It’s not meant to be that way for us. We’re entrepreneurs, and the finish line will always move for us. It has to. It’s in our DNA.

Todd helped me learn how to navigate the ups and downs of the journey, and to actually love the fact that I won’t reach some magical destination where I’m “done”.

He can help you, too. Check out his free video series and see how you too might be inspired to keep moving in ways you didn’t think you could.

(Oh, and if you’re wondering… we’re planning on year three of the camping trip this summer!)