Holding up a mirror and seeing oneself clearly is a challenging task for anyone–even for those with high levels of self-awareness. Add the demands that come with being an entrepreneur and you’ve got a whole other layer of complexity to dig through. That’s why we selected the theme of behavioral measuring and monitoring as the February focus of our peer entrepreneur roundtables. While there are many tangible processes we can monitor in our business operations such as revenue or our social media following, developing greater awareness of our behavior patterns offers an alternative pathway for growth.
So let’s dive into this topic and take the axiom of business guru Peter Drucker to heart:
In other words, setting boundaries and tracking your behavior is key to changing your behavior. I’ll share two real-life examples I’ve personally put into practice:
1: Up & At ‘Em
I started with setting a goal to wake and get out of bed every weekday morning at 5:45 AM. Seem ambitious? You bet! Especially for someone not particularly of the ‘morning-type.’ To be successful, I started by working on setting boundaries around getting to sleep by a reasonable hour, which mad made the earlier wake time infinitely easier. Once I got my circadian rhythm working for me, the 5:45 wake time began morphing into a habit.
2: Take 5 Daily Om
I knew the potential power of building a morning centering routine, so I started with setting a goal of practicing yoga for five minutes every morning. I wake, get nearly straight onto my mat and flow into it. The key here was starting small and setting a low bar of just five minutes. I knew I could accomplish such a small change, and it would set a positive tone for my day. I may expand it over time or I may just stick with five minutes. Setting the intention, getting started, tracking it and building the habit is/was key.
The motivation for me was knowing that both habits would be relaxing, supportive and restorative. The “Why” behind them was that they would help make my business and personal life simply flow better. And they have. When my life is flowing better overall, there’s more of me to invest in my business and my clients.
PS – While there are many apps available to help monitor and shift habits, I’m just using an ol’ fashioned bedside paper template to track my daily progress and celebrate my successes.
BONUS: Checklists increase bandwidth and brainpower
I promised two examples of behavior monitoring for results, but here’s a bonus one showing how this technique can easily be applied to your team:
My project manager Sonja works remotely much of the week, only coming into the office for two days. To make sure no critical items are missed on those few days that she’s in the office (and to make sure neither of us are wasting brainpower remembering/wondering whether something got done), we devised an in-office checklist she can follow. The many tasks that both of us would likely overlook without this handy reminder get accomplished and we don’t have to rely on memory or waste time double-checking. At the end of her in-office day, Sonja leaves the completed checklist with me and we both feel content. Boom!
I always strive to challenge members (and readers of this newsletter) in positive, growth-inspiring ways, so I’ll exit here with these key closing questions:
- What’s one simple thing you could monitor and track in your personal or business behavior to welcome more (fill in the blank) into your life?
- Is there one new thing you could put in place to increase your business functionality or improve the direction you are going?
In your business challenges, remember that small and consistent changes over time add up to big shifts and steady growth.