Plank your Business
"Depending on what they are, our habits will either make us or break us. We become what we repeatedly do." Sean Covey
In this article I want to help you understand how to create habits in your business, same way as you create habits in your life.
Creating a new habit can be extremely difficult. We start with a determination to change something. We are doing great for the first, second and even the third time. Then we realize that a week has passed since the last we did it. It is difficult to stick to it.
Opening and running a business require using many new muscles and creating many new habits. Habits you may not needed while being a hired employee.
Without these new habits, it may be quite difficult for you to be successful.
To give you an idea – let’s take this example: You are a Programmer, you just opened a business. You have your hands full writing code working twelve hours a day.
The end of the month arrives, and you need to invoice your customers.
You did not write hours properly and really can’t say exactly how many hours you worked for each customer. It takes hours to make your best educated guess.
You are frustrated and determent that this will not happen again.
You decide that starting tomorrow you will log the hours, each day, and make it a habit. You even create a new time sheet to log time. Fast forward - It is the end of the month and you realize that, again, you neglected to fully log all hours. Here we go again.
Let’s talk about new habit in physical exercise - Plank. This exercise is hard. “The plank is an isometric core strength exercise that involves maintaining a position like a push-up for the maximum possible time. A plank hold engages multiple muscles at once, thereby benefiting the core strength of your body. Not just burning the fat around your abdomen area, they also work by giving you an improved posture, flexibility as well as a tighter tummy.”
After reading and learning about the benefit of Plank for my health, I decided to start small.
I remember the first time I did it for fifteen seconds, it felt like an eternity. My abs were hurting, and I just wanted to get it over with. Yet, I kept doing it almost every day for many weeks, as part of getting in shape and feeling good in pandemic days. It took a while and I managed to do two full minutes. Still hurting, still difficult, yet as a new habit I can now do it as a routine.
As in plank, same in your business, habits should start small and allow consistency and growth.
Lately, after I got a suggestion from a client, I started a new fitness habit walking workout, walk at home .
Again, I started, with my wife, doing it occasionally, and now we do it almost every day, allowing ourselves to increase our daily walking routine walking outside, adding one mile or more, walking indoor.
Same goes for your work habits.
Experts say the best way to form a new habit is to tie it to an existing habit. Look for patterns in your day and think about how you can use existing habits to create new, positive ones. For examples, if you want to floss, tie it to brushing your teeth.
Another way can be to have someone to hold you accountable. Asking for help from a spouse/ family member/ friend/ coach/ colleague can help you to stay on track. There are also a few apps that can help with accountability.
Now that you know how to start creating habits, here are some examples of important habits that can, in my opinion, help you grow your business:
Spend few minutes every Monday morning planning your week.
Start investing time in strategy, not just in the day to day “fires”.
Track your time, so you can invoice your customers and know how you invested your time.
Create a cash flow report and look at it on a weekly basis, to understand your cash position, so you never drive on empty.
Create ritual for the End of the Month, including writing invoices to customers on the last day of the month, so you can get paid sooner rather than later. (book this time in your Calendar)
Read and analyze financial reports every month, few days after the End of the Month.
Meet your employees, mentor them, grow them, train them.
To sum up, creating any habit in your business takes time and grit. Start small make it big, it will help you grow your business.
" There’s no elevator to success. You have to take the stairs" Zig Zigalar