This is the time that our minds begin to wonder what is in store for us in the upcoming year, and we get to use our creative energy as a way to create our future. On today’s show, James and Phoebe show how you can create an extraordinary year!
For James, planning happens once you already know what the results are that you’re after. You then need to figure out what the steps are to get it.
As humans, we often allow the past to dictate and constrain what we create in the present, which ultimately affects our future.
People tend to get stuck chasing “more” of everything. This can be more work, more employees, more items on the to-do list, etc. The result of this is that you’re still doing the same thing, just more of it. You can only play this game for so long, as you only have a finite amount of time and energy!
He says that to get around this, ask yourself what your next 12 months will look like, but through the eyes of someone who has no prior beliefs, opinions or judgments about what is possible or realistic.
As an exercise, take out a piece of paper and create three columns across the top: “Wins,” “Why” and “Lessons.” Then mentally go through the past year and identify your wins, both big and small, why it was a win for you and what you have learned from each. With these lessons, consider how you can become a better person and grow because of them. Repeat the above process for your “losses.” These will be the things that didn’t quite go as planned during the previous year.
Phoebe notes that with this exercise, you should examine all areas of your life, including spirituality, fun or adventure and health and fitness, and not just look at business activities.
For her, her big win was her recent Sonoma event because it was something that she’s wanted to do for a very long time. The lesson she learned was that imperfect action can create great momentum, and that she needs to trust her intuition more often. Finally, she learned that success comes when she remembers that it’s not all about her, but it’s about service to others.
James shares that not hitting his downloads goal of 1 million in the first year of this podcast can be considered a loss for him. He looks at it like this because the results (about a half a million downloads this year) were pretty far off the goal, but the lesson that he took from this is that they’ll be stepping up the promotional and marketing side of things in 2017.
It’s important to remember that this exercise shouldn’t be used to judge yourself, keep score or compare yourself to others. It’s really about the lessons; the more losses that you experience just means you’ll learn more from each.
The next step of the exercise is to (safely!) burn the paper, followed by saying this affirmation, or something similar to it:
“Thank you for these experiences. I have learned all that I have needed to learn from this. This is it and it is perfect. I now declare these complete and release them.”
After completing this first phase, write down the following question and answer it in past tense:
“If we met up 12 months from now and you had just had the best year ever, how would you describe it to me?”
When answering this question, consider the following: What happened and what new experiences did you have? What accomplishments did you achieve and what was the essence of how you felt throughout the year? What did you do more of and what did you do less of? What made this year great for you?
By doing these exercises, you’re just writing the book that is your life so that you can experience the having of more say in what you create.
On today’s show, James and Phoebe share five things that you can do in order to step out of your comfort zone and take the action that's needed right now!
Phoebe recently hosted her first live event, and found that the more she thought about it while planning, the more she compared it to other events she’s attended in the past. She found herself getting a block around hosting it this year, as she had planned, and the fear crept in.
James says Phoebe had all the logical reasons as to why she should postpone it to next year, such has giving herself more time to plan if it was held in 2017, but what about all the people that were waiting for her to do this and would want to take part?
Her turning point was when she started making it about other people and not herself. The more she let go of it and knew, trusted, and expected it to be the right event for the right people, that’s when everything opened up for her. She took action despite her belief or story of it having to be perfect.
James believes that people often wait for things to be perfect first to do it, and they really need to make it perfect in the doing of it, which is backwards to how most of us think.
Five things you can do now to take action:
1) Soften perfection
A lot of people have a great idea for a launch or product and want it to be an instant success. James let go of doing this a long time ago and attributes this for why their business has kept growing. He’s never looking for the “home run”, but rather consistent base hits.
2) Create a deadline
We often throw deadlines out in life and don’t follow them, but having a firm date is really key to following though on what you plan on doing.
3) Put some “skin in the game”!
In Phoebe’s case, she had the platforms of a podcast and social media to declare her intentions of hosting the event by the end of 2016.
4) Remove all reasons or excuses
Start by at least identifying the reasons or excuses for not taking action, and remember that you can still produce the results you want despite of them.
5) Make it about the customer or end user
By making it about being of service to others and not just about yourself, you make it easier to take actions towards your goals.
Throughout the two days of Phoebe’s event, a common theme that kept coming up was that she was doing the best she could. She realized that she needed to appreciate the present moment and be proud of all that she had accomplished.
To James, the most effective way to serve is to show up and be the person that your customers aspire to be.
If we delay and try to take action that is “perfect”, we’ll always be doing things that are safe and in our comfort zone so that we won’t face potential rejection. However, the real magic happens just outside of our comfort zones.
Scheduling the event and recording the podcast commercial announcing the event was really Phoebe’s first steps outside of her comfort zone in this experience.
For the launch of James’ signature program, the message is similar to that of this podcast in that we always have to start with mindset first.
Business by Design was an idea that he had since 2013, and he finally was able to get around a block he had around the name when he started creating the outline for the beta version. James feels the right name came to him at the right time because he took the inspired, or right action.
Success doesn’t have to do with a high level of energy expenditure, but rather a high level of courage and faith. Getting the right feedback was important for James and has helped his team almost beat the numbers of their last launch in less than two days of the cart being open.
If there’s a commitment to excellence and to your customers’ success, then the rest will follow. Perfectionism is just another form of procrastination!
It’s been said that gratitude unlocks the fullness of life, and in this episode, James and Phoebe discuss how this has affected the both of them personally. They also provide examples of random acts that you can do to add more meaning to your own life, and others, today.
To James, gratitude is a state of being and a feeling, and not just a word or concept to be memorized. He shares that gratitude is an actual frequency you can resonate on.
This frequency unlocks more in our lives, which is backwards to what we’ve been taught.
Many of us don’t realize just how lucky we are, especially if we’re online entrepreneurs, as the technology that is available now wasn’t 10 or 15 years ago.
Nothing motivates him more than the fact that he has the ability to help others. Unfortunately, most people starting a business are so focused on having a survival mindset that other people aren’t a priority.
When performing a random act of kindness, the big fallacy is that it has to be a big financial commitment. However, no matter where you’re at in your life or your business, you always have something that you can give.
One of Phoebe’s mantras is “the more I give, the more I grow.” She says that society isn’t use to accepting help from others though.
Some random acts of kindness that you can do today are:
What we can do and create gives us such an extraordinary life, and when we can step into gratitude it’s just going to continue to come back to us, as well as make a ripple effect in the lives of others.
It really comes back to helping just one person! How can you lighten their day?