If you’re done shopping and prepping for the holidays, then congratulations … and we’re all secretly annoyed with you! Even if you’re not, business tends to slow down during the holidays. That means you might have a few extra hours during the day to plan for the upcoming year. Keep in mind: The more you can tell yourself what you’re going to do, the more time you give yourself. Translation: less emotion, more action!

Here are a few ways to get started on 2019!

You had a bunch of wins this year … celebrate them! Then ask yourself how you got to those wins.

  • Did you get more clients through business development or word-of-mouth?
  • Great job managing expenses and cash flow. How did you do that?
  • Pat yourself on the back for your improved leadership. What’s the plan to keep the momentum going?
  • Your clients are so thankful for you! What are some specific ways you provided value to your clients?

Answer these questions and then draw out the responses or use magazine cutouts to create your board.

  • What is your dream for 2019?
  • Who is your ideal client and how will you reach them?
  • What’s a new idea that could grow your business?
  • What resources will you need?
  • What areas do you need to develop in order to improve leadership skills?

Write your strategic plan and include your mission, vision, values, key objectives and quarterly SMART (SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound) goals. Hint: Use the LifePoint Strategic Plan for direction. And don’t forget to post your strategic plan where you can see it on a daily basis.

Map out your monthly marketing strategy and project your finances in a budget that has clear rules for spending and saving.

  • Identify money-making time blocks (“green time”) with clients who will help you reach your goal.
  • Put together a simple editorial calendar with ideas for blog posts and corresponding social media content.
  • Think about what content you’d like to feature in your newsletter or other communications.
  • Research any marketing opportunities like networking events, conferences, or speaking engagements.

MOST Importantly! Surround yourself with other business owners that will hold you accountable to your goals and will encourage you to stay positive. Then when the inevitable challenge presents itself, you can lean on your accountability partners who will help you identify the situation and brainstorm ways to work through it. Understanding who you are and leaning into your own intuition and strengths will differentiate you from the rest and will increase your confidence as a leader. Now go get ’em!