Why_Its_Important_To_Plan_the_Night_Before

Why It’s Important to Plan Your Day the Night Before

How often do you plan in advance?

Do you plan monthly?

Do you plan weekly?

Do you plan daily?

For all of my clients I always tell them that whatever way they plan, it is vital that they plan their day the night before?

This is something that we discussed in depth at our recent Discovery Day.

Planning your day the night before is one of the most underrated productivity techniques.

Most of us have probably heard this, but do we actually do it?

Before, I used to think that it’s better to plan your day ahead in the morning.

But, what I found out is that it’s more effective to do it the night before.

Here are the reasons why:

1. You will have the most clarity: When you plan the night before, you can look at your day and strategically calculate how it will turn out.

2. You will sleep soundly: One technique you can use is to jot down every single task you need to accomplish and when you don’t have anything in your mind, you’ll sleep much better. Strangely, my brain will try to resolve any problem overnight.

I don’t know how this happens, but I often have the solution in mind the next morning when I wake up.

Every time I plan my day the night before, I get a sense of purpose when I wake up.

Invariably, I know what to do and there’s no need to think about the next step, because I already have it planned out. I just simply get going and be productive after doing my morning routine.

For the most part, mornings can be very unpredictable and you can easily get distracted by one emergency after another.

Before you know it, you’re adding stuff to your list and not knowing what you were supposed to be focusing on because you didn’t plan it the night before.

This is why it’s important. When things are out of control, you can always circle back to your original plan and focus your energy to the next steps you need to do for the rest of the day.

I could go on all day discussing ways to become more productive.

The good news for you is that we will cover all of the above at our next Discovery Day.

If you’d like more information on our next Discovery Day drop me at [email protected] and I’ll give you all the information.

Places are filling up quickly so if you’re interested let me know ASAP!

All the best

Dean

How Do You Deal With Distractions?

How Do You Deal with Distractions?

I want to share something with you that we discussed at our recent Discovery Day.

It is something that faces business owners every single day.

As a Business Owner some of the key challenges that we struggle with everyday are productivity, time management, cashflow, strategy implementation and outsourcing to name but a few.

So today I want to talk about Productivity and Distractions.

The kryptonite of productivity is distractions.

In the modern world that we now live in, we are exposed to lots of daily distractions that can reduce our productivity.

I remember when I was reading an article that led me to watch a YouTube video, watched another video, and before I knew it, I lost 30 minutes of my working time.

Compared to some, it’s not that bad. I’ve seen people get distracted with text messages, push notifications, and phone calls that derail them.

Once you know about all of the distractions that we are faced it you can then meet them head on!

Now, the question is, how can you deal with distractions?

One thing I do is to set up logistics before distractions take place.

To simply put it, you can prevent distractions that grab your attention.

My top three ways of preventing distractions are:

1 – Set three main objectives every day.

2 – Plan your time in 30 minute increments to keep focus

3 – Increase Your Energy Levels

By setting three main objectives it will give you extreme focus throughout the day.

You can then break this down even further and plan these objectives into 30 minute increments in order to achieve them.

When it comes to energy, we are more vulnerable to distractions when we have low energy levels.

On the one hand, when we feel sub-optimal that’s when we easily get distracted. On the other hand, when you are energized, you are less likely to be distracted.

I could go on all day discussing how you can address distractions and increase productivity.

The good news for you is that we cover all of the above at our next Discovery Day.

If you’d like more information on our next Discovery Day drop me at [email protected] and I’ll give you all the information.

Places are filling up quickly so if you’re interested let me know ASAP!

All the best

Dean

Why_You_Need_A_Break_to_Be_Productive

Why You Need a Break to be More Productive!

​​Do you think that by working every hour under the sun you’ll be more productive?

If you answer yes to this then you are wrong!​​

It’s a common belief that if we work longer, we achieve more.

For years, I believed that breaks were a waste of time and if I didn’t work most of my waking hours then I wouldn’t be productive. But all of it was a myth.

In fact, taking a break is the key to productivity. Taking a break in-between work is a must to regain focus and to allow your body and brain to rest. The more often you take breaks, the more productive you get.

You start by thinking of your work as taking multiple sprints than a one big marathon. Work in sprints mean you work hard and give all you’ve got for short periods of time.

In between sprints, you can take recovery breaks to replenish your energy. Therefore, you are either fully engaged or not doing anything at all.

The best way to do this is to divide your time in 30-minute increments using the Productivity Planner.

I have incorporated this method into my workday and it has worked wonders.

By tracking my time in 30-minute increments using the Productivity Planner it has allowed me to see the areas:

– Where I am spending my time

– Where I am wasting my time

– Where I should be spending more time

By tracking and understanding my time using the Productivity Planner it has allowed me focus on areas that help grow my business.

If you want a copy of our new Q2 Productivity Planner, email me at [email protected] and i’ll send you a copy

Fire Yourself Every 3 Months

How to Fire Yourself Every 3 Months

I want to share something with you that we discussed at our recent Discovery Day.

This is for people who are stuck in their business, want to get out of their business and free up more time in their calendar.

You’re probably thinking “Dean, I cant fire myself”!

My company needs me. I’m the one that makes the company grow!

Well listen to me when I say you CAN FIRE YOURSELF!



Let me explain myself!!

In order to “Fire Yourself” every 3 months you need to track exactly where your time is going, every single day. Note it down so you know exactly where your time is going.

Then every 3 months you review it and see where you’re spending the majority of your time.

After reviewing it you discover:

– That in the last 3 months you spent 40 hours on accountancy. So now you need to bring in an accountant part-time.

– You also see that in the last 3 months you spent 20 hours on admin. So now you need to bring in someone to work on admin part-time.

The key to “Firing Yourself” is that you need to be constantly pushing away all the work that’s stopping you from growing the business. Constantly pushing it away, because there’s always going to be loading onto your desk.

The purpose of “Firing Yourself” is that the business is not reliant on you, the business can operate without you and you reduce the amount of time you spend in the business.

Check out our video above on how I “Fire Myself Every 3 Months!

If you have any questions on how I can help you fire yourself every 3 months drop me an email on [email protected] or call me on (076) 888 6170

 

 

Which Entrepreneurial Level Are You?

Wouldn’t it be great to have the luxury to have ambition, perspective, and philosophy to work less while making more and more money.

Nowadays It is so important to have the work / life balance in order to get the most out of your career and your personal life.

If you think that working every hour under the sun makes you successful you’re wrong. You need to understand and focus on your goals in life in order to get to where you want to be.

This is why it is important to know which level are you on in your entrepreneurial journey:

1. The Entrepreneurial Employee

If you fall in this category, you tend to work with a sense of familiarity and security. Your main priority is financial subsistence, rather than to work on more profitable ventures that might require new experience beyond comfort zone. For a short period of time, you are an excellent employee, but eventually you become bored and burned out. Although you may threaten to leave, you fail most of the time. This is because of your nature to be risk-averse, comforting, and inclined to please others than acting for yourselves or accepting leadership roles.

2. The Self-Employed Entrepreneur

You want freedom from an authority of a boss. A do-it-yourself entrepreneur who have so much drive for autonomy and self-reliance, but lack the necessary administrative, leadership, and managerial skills. With these drawbacks, you tend to work long hours alone, work through all the details in the business, and avoid new and innovative learning methods as well as taking help from other people.

3. The Managerial Entrepreneur

You belong to this level when you prioritise growing your organization in systematic way even if the growth may or may not make sense. You often expand when it isn’t necessary and ignore bottom line profits. More often than not, you will mismanage small, flexible companies into complicated and constrained ones by expanding bureaucracy.

4. The Entrepreneurial Investor/Owner

Your focus is not only creating business, but also on marketing and selling as an investor and / or owner. You don’t concentrate on sales of products and services, but on sales of the whole company that often leads you to successfully franchise your company. Selling companies for profit is your centre of attention, because you primarily view business as investment vehicles meant to be sold, not held for life.

5. The Visionary Entrepreneur

A type of entrepreneur who rises to the level of enjoying many passive-income centers. In this level, you can dedicate as much time as you want to your personal endeavors. You view work as a pursuit that involves turning dreams into reality. You devote your time thinking of great ideas that you can come true. With the immense resources that you have, you are able to create things no one can ever imagine.

Each one of us place ourselves within these five levels of entrepreneurship.

I used to be stuck in the first two levels of entrepreneurship, but I learned strategies that made my business into success and now I am in number 4 and 5!

Now, that I was able to grow my business, I want to share my knowledge on how I grew this into a highly profitable one.

Feel free to drop a message on [email protected] call me on (076) 888 6170.

All the best
Dean

P.S. Whenever you’re ready… here are 4 ways I can help you grow your business:

1. Grab a free copy of my Productivity Planner

The Productivity Planner allows business owners track their time in 30 minute increments, showing them the areas where they are spending their time, where they are wasting their time and where they should be spending more time on. Download Here – https://goo.gl/TZn1X8

2. Come along to our EXCLUSIVE ‘Discovery Day’ Business Seminar

I’ll show you the “ins and outs” of how I’ve been growing my companies by 20-30% year on year and cutting my hours in the process. I’ll also show you behind the scenes of some of my most successful projects (including the financials behind them and how I pulled it off, step by step).

3. Join the Entrepreneurs and Business Owners LinkedIn group and connect with other business owners who are scaling too.

It’s our new LinkedIn community where Entrepreneurs, SME’s and Business Owners in Ireland meet and discuss best practices in growing a company. Join NOW – https://goo.gl/zfC1dy

4. Work with me and my team privately

If you’d like to work directly with me and my team to take you from 5 to 6 figures… just send me a message and with the word “Private”… tell me a little about your business and what you’d like to work on together, and I’ll get you all the details!

business

Using Goals to Get What You Want From Life!

Whats the one thing I can guarantee you without ever having to meet you? Nothing is going to get handed to you in life. Nothing! Everything you want must be earned through long nights, early mornings, stressful and emotional days.

 

Each and every desire you have in life, that you have mentioned on passing or have dreamed about is as achievable against the amount of time, effort and planning you put into getting it. When you set out on going to a particular destination in your car, you will have an idea of how long it will take you to get there and what route you’re going to take. If you don’t take a car and use public transport then you have to figure it all out. Get the bus to the train station, the train station to your destination and then maybe a taxi. Setting goals should be treated no differently. You need to set yourself a route you can take, what you need to do along that route, how much money you may need, any obstacles that you might come up against on the way. This is the only way you can increase your chances of making it happen.

 

We are very lucky growing up in such a tightly connected world. Compare to 10-20 years ago, the world was a much bigger place and information on certain topics was impossible to find. This makes goals easier than ever to achieve. Everything for you to increase your chances of achieving them is at your fingertips. Your biggest obstacle in achieving them is you, your mindset, work etihc, persistence, determination and planning. You!

 

Case Study:

I have read about a case study numerous times but I cannot find any direct evidence of it. Though I would suspect that the numbers are fairly accurate. The case study is as follows.

 

A graduating class from Harvard were asked; “Have you any written goals for the future?” The results were as follows:

  • 3% had written goals.
  • 10% had goals in mind, but nothing written on paper.
  • 87% had no idea of their goals.
  • 10 years later, the whole class was interviewed again. The results were astounding.
  • The 10% of students who had goals in mind, but nothing on paper were earning twice as much as the 87% who had no idea of their goals.
  • The 3% of had written goals, were earning on average, 10 times more than the 97% combined.

 

The above does not surprise me. 87% of people walk about life haphazardly, going with the flow expecting everything to come to them. They dream and talk about everything they want in life, but never find it in themselves to realise, nobody is going to hand you anything.

 

The Process:

 

I recommend on reading the article as a whole first, then set a date, time and place where you can have 30-60mins of peace to get through as much as possible. The chances of you going through and doing this now is very unrealistic.

 

Decide on the goal.

You should have goals for every area of your life that you want to see improvement. However, being realistic you probably won’t.  It really depends on what you want and what your current circumstances are. Ie whats the No.1 thing you want at the moment more than anything else. For me at one point, all I wanted was my own business. That year that was all I focused on all day every day. If you are starting out with goals, just pick one or two. The most important step is getting started and using goals. You can add more over time. These are the areas I have come up with over time.

 

  1. Health – Your key health goals. I want to be 79kg and go to the gym 3 days per week.
  2. Income – What you would like to make per year. I want to make €150,000 / year
  3. Relationships/Family – I want to spend more time with my family.
  4. Business/Work – You want a certain promotion, own a business,
  5. Experiences – Parachute jump, climb Mount Everest, live with a tribe.
  6. Legacy – What do you want to be remembered for? Great husband/wife, charity work, commitment,
  7. Achievements – What do you want to accomplish? Climb Mount Everest. Retire at 45.

 

Some of the above areas may cross with another area. This does not matter, all you want is to get everything out of your head and down on paper. I would recommend on spending no longer than  one minute doing this initially. Write down your first list as quick as possible. Usually, the most meaningful things will come to you straight away.

 

Recording your Goal:

 

Getting your goal down on paper and out of your head is critical. I like to take it one step further and write all my goals down on a google spreadsheet. From here, everything is a lot more manageable. I can set reminders and share with other people. I will always know where it is. I will share a special spreadsheet I use at the end of the article; this will make life super easy for you and increase the chances of you hitting your goals tenfold.

 

Set your start/deadline date

I like to have start / deadline dates. This lets me know when I need to start planning my next goal and when I need to have the goal complete by.  For every minute you spend in planning, it will save you 10min’s in execution.

 

Assign how much you will think it will cost to reach this Goal (Budget)

A lot of people miss out on this one. You will need a certain budget to achieve a goal. If you want to climb Mount Everest it would cost in the region of €60,000. As of today, 31/12/2013 it costs $250,000 to fly to space with Virgin Galactic. Maybe to build your dream home you will need €500,000. Whatever the amount, it’s something you need to consider.

 

Time Required:

To hit your goals, how much time is required by you. There is no point setting a goal of traveling around the world if you can’t take if off work. Some goals may not take any time as they are goals you accomplish over a longer period. You should consider it for some goals and ignore for others. Something I find very helpful is I take the last week off every quarter. This spaces out my holidays evenly and lets me slot plan well in advance what destinations I am going to visit. 

 

What’s going to stop you from hitting your goals?

Make a list of everything you can think of that is going to stop you from hitting your goals. This is powerful as too many people set goals then when they hit their first obstacle it stops them dead in their tracks.  Make these obstacles your No.1 priority action steps towards that goal, this is called negative planning. I have found that this helps me tremendously reach my goals. It puts you in a different frame of thinking and gives you a much clearer line of sight of how you can achieve your goal. There are bottlenecks to any good plan, you need to look hard ahead to spot these and find a way to eliminate them.

 

How can you leave you your goals so they are inevitable?

This will only apply to some goals but again, I find this very powerful. You are looking for ways to achieve your goal by putting less work on you. So if you want to get fitter, you might hire a personal trainer. If you want to learn a new skill you might book a course right this very minute so you have to go. One of my goals was to eat healthier a while back so now I get fresh fruit delivered to my office every Monday. I noticed before when I had to go out and buy it, I rarely did. I also share all my goals with my PA, once the goals are set, she helps me achieve them. She books trips, checks availability, does research etc. For every goal I complete she gets a bonus.

 

Accountability

Inform someone of your goals, this may be your girlfriend, wife, friend or someone that may be able to help you. The more people you involve, the higher your chance of hitting everything. Make others part of your goal by sharing the experience with them, it will encourage you even more.

 

Break them down

Break down each goal into small manageable pieces. The smaller and more detailed they are the easier the goal will be to achieve. You’re looking for the specific steps in order of sequence from start to finish.

 

Action Calendar

Write down what you need to do for each goal on the following basis.

  • Daily habits / action steps
  • Weekly Habits / Action Steps
  • Monthly habits / Action Steps

 

Review – Set time aside to review your goals. Depending on how disciplined you are, you can either review them daily or weekly. I prefer weekly. I review all my goals on a Sunday evening, review the previous week and plan the following week.

It’s very rewarding to sit down and trash out your life goals. It doesn’t take long for this part, so I would highly advise on doing it. When you have to break down each and every goal into action steps, it can be a bit of a pain. Lucky you, I have a really easy way of doing it. I have made a google spreadsheet that guides you along the whole process and makes everything super easy for you. It will send reminders to your email when you need to start certain goals and when there deadline is approaching. It also breaks up your goals and leaves them a lot more manageable than having a piece of paper. All you have to do, is sign up for my newsletter and I will send you details of the spreadsheet together with a video showing you how to use it.

 

My most important question yet!

So which category do you fall into from the case study?

  • 3% had written goals.
  • 10% had goals in mind, but nothing written on paper.
  • 87% had no idea of their goals.

 

28 Dec 2014 Update! 

I originally wrote this article in 2013 and have learned a lot since this. Some updates that I would like to add. 

I no longer use a spreadsheet to track my goals. I now use Asana.com. The reason I made the move is Asana gives me the option to share my goals with other people, discuss them and make more actionable tasks under each one. I can choose to assign a task to another person or just myself. 

I spend even more time reviewing and updating my goals that ever before. It’s a bit of a cliche but I have found the more planning, preparation and reviewing I have put into my goals the bigger return I get. To make things easy for goal reviewing I take the last Friday off to review all my goals for that month. I also take the last week off of each quarter to review everything from that quarter. Taking so much time off made me nervous initially but It is one of the best decisions I have ever made.

Your circle of friends. Who you hang around with most will either push you towards your goals or pull you away from them. There is a famous saying from world renowned self help guru Jim Rohn, “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” This is very true. If you want to own your own business, then start mixing among entrepreneurs and business people. If you want to earn more money, then start spending more time with people who you admire and look up to. This was a difficult one for me, my childhood friends are happy and in content with where they are at the moment. I on the other hand want to push myself forward, this meant seeking out the people I wanted to be like and start trying to spend some time with them. 

Achieving your goals is by no means an easy task but when you do, it is the most satisfying feeling in the world. Once you are persistent and hungry enough to pursue your goals, nothing will stand in your way!