Get Laser-Focused Results in 2019 Using Carrot’s Annual Planning Process

2019 annual planningNow is the time to make some mindset adjustments so you can hit 2019 hard and make it your best year yet. We’re going to walk you through how to gain momentum in the New Year, gain massive clarity, and focus.

This might be you…

  • You are a high achieving entrepreneur and don’t want to settle for living an average life.
  • You might be achieving your “someday goals” but still not happy and fulfilled.
  • You feel like you’re working your butt off but not getting closer to your ultimate goals. Or, your goals keep shifting. 
  • You set goals for the year but by March or April, you’ve already forgotten them because you’re not making big progress. Then you let life choose what you spend your time on.
  • You’re starting each day feeling overwhelmed at everything you have to do and the little time you have to do it.
  • You wish that finally one of your businesses or business ideas would grow to its full potential rather than doing “decent” and leveling off.
  • You know you’re able to achieve MORE, but can’t figure out how to punch through the wall.
  • You’re growing your team but you’re feeling more overwhelmed now than before.
  • You’re sabotaging yourself and your goals, but you don’t know why

Before you dive in … here is your chance to WATCH the replay “Make 2019 Your Best Year Yet!

My 5 Step Process For 2019 Planning to Achieve Laser-Focused Results

  1. Mindset Practices: Your Biggest Asset / Enemy5 Step Process To An Epic Year
  2. Clarifying Your “Life Vision”
  3. Creating an Ironclad Yearly Plan
  4. Keeping The Course During The Year
  5. Winning the DAY and Creating Good Habits

1) Time For A Mindset Reset

What’s actually important in the grand scheme of things??? Clearing Your Mind For The Important Things.

Various internet sources estimate that an adult can make around 35,000 remotely conscious decisions each day. While compared to a child at about 3,000 each day (Sahakian & Labuzetta, 2013).

What to eat, what to wear, what to read, which direction to drive, and on and on. In order to stay strategic and unclutter your mind, try eliminating some of the mundane decisions.

Eliminate Decision Fatigue

decision making and psychology
Steve Jobs Cut Out Some Mental Fatigue By Wearing the Same Outfit for Over a Decade.

In decision making and psychology, decision fatigue refers to the deteriorating quality of decisions made by an individual, after a long session of decision making. It is now understood as one of the causes of irrational trade-offs in decision making.

Next, start thinking about this “how do I define success?” Is it a career that exceeds expectations, lots of money, or bigger toys? Or, is it an abundance of family time, getting into shape and health, or relaxing and enjoying life?

There are five essential elements to include in your planning to be a complete success. You can certainly be successful in one or more area, but strive to have high scores on all five to be a complete success. Try this little test…

Take This Quick Test of the 5 F’s. Write Down a Score of 1 – 5 (5 Being You’re Crushing It)

Fitness ____

Family ____

Friends ____

Financial ____

Faith ____

So how do these five F’s play into becoming a complete success? As we set goals and strive for success in our lives, our goals should fit into one or more of these areas.

Having goals that will better each of these areas of your life. They will enrich your entire life and help you to achieve the success you desire.

The next obstacle you need to hurdle is how you view urgency.

Urgency (or lack of) Is One Of Our Biggest Problems and One of the Biggest Fixes I’ve Found is to Recognize Your Own Mortality.

Let’s show this visually…

This is human life in 90 years:

A 90-Year Human Life in Years

And, a 90-Year Life in Months:

90 year human life in months

And, in weeks. How are you going to choose to spend your time?

How are you going to spend your time?

… Are you using your time wisely?

Everything You “Focus” on in 2019 Takes Your Mental Energy and Physical Time.

If you start and stop and spread yourself around…

On the left… you have the “unfocused” and busy entrepreneur.

You’ll be overwhelmed, have a lack of finishing things, achieve below your potential, have a lower income, and always be “busy” but nothing to show for it.

I’ve been there. I started to see success in my businesses and that success opened up many more opportunities.

But, what I didn’t realize is, opportunities are often times distractions dressed in disguise.

Every one of those arrows is a different focus that requires you to spend time and energy.

When you are working on so many “opportunities”… none of those”opportunities” are able to grow to their full potential.

But, When You Put Your Energy Into Fewer Things…

That’s when things start to roll and take off in your life.

It’s what happens when you start saying “no” to 99% of everything (even the opportunities that look shiny) and say “YES” to just the essential few things that are going to help you make the biggest impact in your life and income.

If you add up the length of all of those little arrows in the first diagram, they equal the length of this one long arrow here. So you’re using the same amount of energy doing unfocused things.

But what if you focused on ONLY THE BEST opportunities and used that same energy to make that great? The results are a factor of 10x.

Energy Audit Worksheet

Download Your Energy Audit Worksheet

Energy Audit Worksheet

albert einstein“We are most productive when we focus on a very small number of projects on which we can devote a large amount of attention.”

– Albert Einstein

2) Clarify Your Life’s Vision

annual planning your life's vision
What’s Your Life’s Vision?

Planning your year will not produce results if you aren’t clear what you want in LIFE.

Where do you see your business in 2019? How about in five years? These questions can be tough. They might even catch you off-guard.

You and your business might be missing a vital part of the strategic planning process.

So you know what you and your business need to do?

You MUST know where you want to go.

Grab a pen, some paper, and find a quiet spot. Write “What’s My Vision Story?” Jot down where you’d like to be in…

  • 25 years
  • 10 years
  • 5 years
  • 1 year

Need help? Get started creating your own vision statement now!

3) Creating An Ironclad Yearly Plan

As entrepreneurs, we NEED momentum to be happy… crafting a clear PLAN for the year helps keep momentum.

First off… there’s no one right way to do this.

I think it’s different depending on the “goal” and the phase of your life. Here are a couple of examples.

annual planning success

A tactic that I started to implement into my planning is called Ikigai. Ikigai is a term for “a reason for being.”  The source of value in one’s life or the things that make one’s life worthwhile. Use this or find something similar and apply that into your planning.

Image Source: Toronto Star

For me, my personal plan is first, then the business plan supports the personal.
(I usually take a full day to detach, dream, and get clear)

The 3 Step Personal Power Process

  1. Read your vision story, edit it, update it, get excited about it! If it doesn’t excite you reading it, you’re reading the wrong story.
  2. Now, jot down your intentions for the year on every important part of your life on the Dreams Now worksheet.
  3. Do a quick 15 minute Energy Audit.

Download Our Dreams Now Worksheet

Dreams Now Worksheet

On the call, I walk you through how to fill out this worksheet.

Now, Theme Your Year

Pick the #1 most important thing you want to live in 2019. For me, I’ve had themes like…

“To look back and KNOW I did the best I could possibly do on everything I did”
“Health and activity over everything else”
“Building something great with massive focus”
“Lead by example in everything I do”
“Actions Express Priorities”

Next, I Start My Business Annual Planning Process (1-2 days)

To get past those ceilings… almost always it’s a process addition and a communication change. Even if you’re currently a 1 person show.

Where Are You Going?

  • Choose a big vision for the year

If you were to look back in 12 months at the year that passed, what would have had to happen in order for you to feel that year was a success?

Now… Get Brainstorming

Mind Expansion … what do you need to tackle to 10x your company. Think bigger and get things in place to make your life easier.

Mess Things Up. Then Build Back Up.

brainstorming for business success

Here Is An Example Of Our Basic Annual Planning Agenda

Day 1:

(1) Set aside time (1-2 days)

(2) Review + reflect on the year

  • Goals vs. reality
  • Wins! + What caused not reaching goals
  • Opportunities and Threats (what could kill the business?)

(3) Expand mindset (10x)

Day 2:

(4) Goals for 2019

  • Financial and other trackable goals
  • Should Embarrass You and be scary

(5) What do we need to do?

  • People/gaps to fill?
  • Processes?
  • Projects

(6) Theme

  • What are the Core Focus areas to achieve that in 2019? (Write down 3-5)

(7) Create visuals to get in front of people (After)

Annual Planning Goals Waterfall

We started using the “Annual Waterfall” in 2018. We take a look at this page weekly. It consists of these items for the year:

  • Vision / Mission
  • Critical Numbers / Goals
  • Big Rocks (objectives)

But it also includes a “Quarterly Waterfall” so we can look at it from a drilled down view for even better planning.

4. Keeping The Course During The Year

It’s human nature to wander. It’s the “bumpers” you put around you that help you stay on the right track.

Stick to a Process for an Epic Year

my annual planning pyramid

I’ve seen some common mistakes in planning. Such as…

  • Choose a big yearly goal (BHAG)
  • Their goal/focus is kinda vague
  • Only do their goal setting and “themes” once a year
  • Give up on their goals by March

Instead, what they need to do…

  • Break it down into “90-day” chunks… Big Rocks
  • Bring my targets closer

Work your annual goals backward and make them more achievable into Quarterly Missions.

Then Create A Simple Scorecard You Review Weekly (sometimes daily)

Here’s one specific to wholesalers…

Download the Wholesaling Scorecard

Add quarterly planning sessions to your calendar now. Utilize those sessions to really build momentum and clarity.

Don’t forget! You need to also schedule a quarterly “out of office” day. 100% away from distractions for each quarter to set your goals, update your scorecard, and create your simple “Quarterly Waterfall.”

5. Winning The DAY And Creating Good Habits

Your habits shape you. Your environment shapes your habits. Shape your environment so are intentional about what you fill your mind with.

Craft A Winning Environment
Craft a Winning Environment: Surround Yourself with Motivating Visuals

Organizing Your Day

organizing your day

Download The Organizing Your Day Sheet

Your environment shapes you. Shape your environment so are intentional about what you fill your mind with.

My Habit and Goal Tracker

My personal Annual Planning daily habit sheet

Some Habits That Changed the Game For Me In 2018

Getting more energy:

  • Working out 5x/week
  • Drinking 70+ oz of water/day
  • Stopped eating after 8 pm

More centered and present:

  • Put my phone in the bathroom at night and in the box by the door when I get home
  • Go to bed by 10:30 pm (most nights)
  • Wake up by 5:30 am (still working on that)
  • Reading time in AM and PM

More productive at work:

  • Planning out day and week ahead of time (obvious)
  • Sharing it w/ my assistant and wife for accountability

It’s all about Habit Triggers…

Your 5 Step Process For Planning An Epic Year

1. Mindset Practices: Your Biggest Asset / Enemy

2. Clarifying Your “Life Vision”

  • Life list + Vision Story (annually)
  • Raise your standards

3.Creating An Ironclad Yearly Plan

  • Ikigai + Energy Audit + 5 F’s
  • Annual planning + waterfall

4. Keeping The Course During The Year

  • Quarterly waterfall + scorecard
  • Productivity sheet / Habit Tracker
  • Mindset / Habit triggers

5. Winning The DAY And Creating Good Habits

If you want to have your best year ever in 2019, this strategy will help you get off on the right foot and build momentum into January.

The entire purpose of this strategy is to simplify the process of planning an amazing 2019. Creating and executing your goals can be tough. I developed a simple approach a few years ago that transformed my life and I am confident it can change yours!

Watch the Annual Planning REPLAY: Make 2019 Your Best Year Yet!

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