When to comes to keeping an eye on what you’re doing to grow your business – the actions you’re taking, the results you’re seeing, the adjustments you’re making, the time you’re spending – are you doing it?
Or are you getting in your own way?
Are you diligent about following what’s working and not?
Or do you feel like it’s a waste of your already-limited time?
Or maybe you fall somewhere in the middle, knowing how vital it is but just can’t seem to get your brain fully on board?
The topic is such a hot buzz issue that after a recent conversation in an online group about this very issue, one of the women emailed me to get on my calendar in the coming weeks to talk about it.
She’s tracking her time and actions and results, but as she’s gearing up for MAJOR up-leveling in the coming months, she wants outside, expert eyes on it, too.
I love seeing a business owner who’s absolutely crushing it but knows that reviews and adjustments are part of the game.
Tracking what you’re really doing for your business is key to knowing what adjustments to make!
In my own business, tracking my time, actions, results and insights was a game changer. It’s the difference-maker for me.
I’ve always tracked my time and known where my hours are going in my business. It’s something I trained myself to do when I was a VA years ago and billing by the hour and continue to do to this day.
You see, the mind can be a slick lady, telling you one unhelpful thought so loudly you start to believe it.
Like, the times I get to Wednesday and I’m tired as heck and begin to tell myself that “maybe I’m just not cut out for this business owner thing”. (oh yes, that’s happened)
Instead of buying into that super unsupportive thinking, I open my time tracking sheet and take a peek at what I’ve been up to for the week. Usually, I find that I’ve put in a full week’s worth of work time at only halfway point, without really realizing it.
I show myself compassion because apparently, I’m getting shit done that week, and then book out a little breathing space.
But that’s not all.
The other reason I love to track action, results, and insights in my business is because of the mental shift it enabled. Bet you didn’t see that one coming.
I’ve always been just fine making big business decisions and executing on those decisions, but my mindset would often get in the way.
My mind would manage me (not the other way around).
Tracking my actions and results led me to make some big decisions about my marketing efforts last year. I was leading two local, in-person groups because I thought my ideal client was hanging out there.
Since I’m super organized and event planning is part of my experience, it seemed like a no-brainer.
Each month, though, I’d drag myself to the meetings and not enjoy it. I figured it was something I just needed to push through in order to be that business owner who’s out there, making connections with anyone and everyone.
When I stepped back to look at how many meetings I’d held, size of groups, member engagement, time spent preparing, and on and on… I saw that I wasn’t producing the results I wanted.
That’s right – no clients landed, no referral partners, no new subscribers.
So I dropped the groups and haven’t looked back.
Having the data allowed me to step back from each situation and make the decision that was right for my business because I knew I’d be letting a few people down.
I take my tracking that extra step further, by also keeping tabs on my mindset ups and downs. It allows me to step back from the situation without making the thoughts mean so much.
Because if I believed them all of the time, I wouldn’t have a successful business – I would have gotten in my own way to the point of not being in business a long time ago.
I even have an appointment on my calendar to coach myself every weekday morning. I don’t self-coach each morning. But by simply having the daily appointment on my calendar, I’m reminded to look at my thoughts like a scientist, especially when I’m down on myself or have negative self-talk swirling. Yep, it happens to all of us.
So there you have it – tracking is really about NUMBERS on a page or spreadsheet.
The numbers are unemotional, they don’t tell the story, they give you the facts.
You then get to chose what you want to do with those facts.
Hold tight to a really supportive thought and do more of that.
Or, let those pesky, unhelpful thoughts go.
Or, get curious about a thought you didn’t even know was there.
When you’re feeling resistance to tracking in your business, what’s coming up? What are those thoughts?
Get them down on paper so that you can see them and coach yourself around that thinking.
Then, dive in and start as big or small as you want – just take an action to start your tracking.
Photo by Hannah Olinger on Unsplash