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Small Business Revitalization Blog

Small Business Coaching: Revive Your Profits, Revitalise Your Perspectives, Reinvigorate Your People

What's Missing In Your Business?

You know that feeling you get when you know something is missing, but you just don't know what it is?  You 'should' be making way more money, but you're not.  You 'should' be moving forward faster with your projects, but you're not.  You 'should' be engaging with way more people, but you're not!  

When I looked underneath all of the 'shoulds' in one of my businesses it came down to one thing.  Consistency. I was great at doing lots of the things that were needed to make it work. Occasionally. Randomly. When I felt inspired. When I remembered. When I wasn't distracted with client projects. And when I looked at the times the business had worked really well, it was when I was doing the business generating and expanding activities CONSISTENTLY!

Most of us have some idea of what to do to create growth in our business.  When we first started we figured it out - because it was get it to work or go back to the JOB.  Motivation comes from interesting places!  And once we had it figured out and the business was moving forward, we got busy with other activities.  The actions that sound important, the actions that are required to service our customers. The actions that took us away from the genuinely essential actions.

These are the actions that keep a business running...  Somewhere in your business there are some actions missing that make the difference between a thriving business and a surviving business.  What are they?  It's different for every business.  You know your business model and you know what it takes to keep the engine humming.  And if you aren't sure, that's your first action - find out!!

If you know what it is, how much attention are you giving to the daily, weekly or monthly actions that keep the engine in tune and humming along effortlessly?  If a few things have fallen off the consistency wagon, now is the time to change that.

I know what you are thinking.  "If it was easy for me to be consistent with these things I'd be doing it!"  Yes, I hear you! Consistency not natural for me either - I much prefer to play with new ideas!!  And I'm inviting you to find a way to make it work for you - because you know and I know that when you do these things consistently, your business will grow!

Here are three ways I get myself in the energy of being consistent:
1)  Produce in blocks.  For example, instead of writing random blog posts because I haven't posted lately and I need to show up, I'll write 10 - 15 posts at a time and schedule them in advance.  Faster and easier and everyone feels the love!

2)  Delegate.  There are just some things you'll never get to.  Find someone who is better than you at the task in hand and make it their job to deliver regularly.  Make a diary note so you can check the task is being completed.

3)  Power Hours.  I've talked about these before.  They are one of my favourite things.  Make a list of all those small things that need doing regularly that you just have to do and set aside a daily or weekly power hour.  It might be making client appointments, paying your team.  Whatever it is that will create more space and more possibilities for the future, schedule it!  Some weeks I even have two!  Because I know that an hour of priorities each week saves me many more hours down the track.  And we'd all like to work less right?

So, this week's business coaching challenge is to identify at least two things that would make a difference to your business if you did them consistently, and set up a system for getting them done!  You don't need to be the source, you just need a system that works!

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What Is Beyond Meditation?


Do you meditate to keep yourself on track?  For many years whenever I negotiated my job conditions with a new employer, I also negotiated time to go to my weekly personal meditation session with my then mentor.  A lot of employers found it a little strange, but I never had anyone say no!!!

The funny thing was, despite my commitment to the meditation cause, meditation didn’t really ever work for me in the ways I hoped.  I spent hours a day meditating for many years and there was very little to show for it – I was still the world’s most incredible over-thinker… and I still did not have the space and peace that I desired.  

The Huffington Post talks about the daily habits of wealthy successful business leaders who use meditation and mindfulness techniques to superpower their capacities… that was my target with meditation too– until I became aware of even more creative, generative possibilities that took a lot less time and gave me a lot more ease.

Here’s the thing… meditation is designed to give your brain space.  To stop you thinking.  To have you just BE.  We have been presented with one basic way to meditate – sit still and empty your mind.  And while there are lots of variations to that theme, it just doesn’t work for some people.

Now I use other tools to create total space in my brain… and in my body… and these tools exponentialize my awareness far beyond anything I experienced with meditation.  I am happier, healthier and way more creative than I ever was when I was meditating.  Here’s why…     

  • I let go of having to use the ‘right’ process… and started to use what was actually working for me.
  • I found other variations of meditation that the purists would judge as ‘wrong’ – and yet they create a greater result for me.  I have more space, ease and peace now than I have ever had!
  • In discovering over 20 ways to create that space, I can have it wherever I am, whenever I need, without having to do something ‘significant’ to create it.  

Are you curious yet?  What if you had a toolbox that would allow you to create far beyond what most people imagine possible?  Here’s three things you can play with to see what works for you!!

  1. Move your body rhythmically – whether it be a run at lunchtime, a walk and talk meeting, or some stretches in a park.  Allowing your body to move and being totally present with your body will free up your mind!
  2. Ask questions.  My current  favourites are “What space can I be right now?  How much space can I be here?”  And you don’t even have to ask out loud – ask quietly in your head while everyone around you is losing theirs and you may be surprised at what shows up!!!
  3. BE present.  When we are present with what is, rather than what ‘should’ be, we tap into an awareness that is different to the busyness in our head.  What if you BE with what is and stop judging it?  Have you noticed how much head chatter is actually judgment of what is right or wrong?  What if it just is?  And what if you can contribute your presence and energy to creating something different… IF that is what you desire?

And know this… whatever works for you works for you… please stop trying to fit into other people’s realities around what works for them!   So many well-meaning people tell me I need to meditate.  I am grateful for their point of view.  AND I’m not going to buy it… what works for me right now is what works for me!!

Do you do something different than the ‘norm’ to create space, ease and peace?  What unexpected thing is it that superpowers your possibilities in business?  I would love to know!|

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10 Ways to Give Your Mojo a Boost


Many successful people come to a stage where they feel tired, unmotivated and missing that energy that made them successful in the first place.  Sometimes it is a result of a specific incident, more often it shows up out of the blue - the combination of a thousand small moments that weren't quite what our inner being truly desired!

Sound familiar?  Here's 10 quick, easy changes you can make that will give your mojo a boost:

  1. Do your work differently.  Look at it as if you have never done this task before and ask yourself how else could you do this to create a greater possibility?
  2. Start in the middle of a project instead of the beginning and see where it leads.  (Sometimes the unplanned leads to the greater possibility!!)
  3. Re-energise by having fun in your 10 minute breaks.  If you can't remember what is fun for you, the first thing to do is make a list of possibilities... add at least 3 things in each break until you have 50 ways to enjoy yourself in the moment.  (Hint:  more work should not be on the list!)
  4. Pretend you are six and see what you are doing as a six year old would - what could be different?
  5. Be or do something unexpected every day, so that the people around you get to see another side of you.  It keep's them on their toes (and keeps you entertained!)
  6. Stop meeting people's expectations unless it is joyful for you to make this contribution.
  7. See everything as an interesting point of view (rather than buying people's ideas as facts) and look at what YOU would like to choose.
  8. Ask the universe to show you catalysts for creating your work anew.
  9. Talk to people in different industries that inspire you.
  10. Be you!  So often we lose our mojo when we are busy being everything to everyone.  When you start to choose for you the magic can show up more often!

Having been through burnout a couple too many times, I am an expert in helping people get their mojo back...the ideas above represent some options on the practical side.  Each person is different and  I can also work with your energy. If you need a one-off energy-based session to get you aback on track please contact me!   By phone, skype or in person... depending on where you are!

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Interview: The Mojo of Flow. Making Life Work.

Would you like to listen to my recent interview with Suzi Dafnis from the Australian Business Women's Network? We are talking all things Mojo of Flow!

In this herBusiness podcast, I share :
  •  how we sometimes sabotage the flow in our own lives
  •  how we can superpower the way that life flows for ourselves
  •  and tips on how to get others to willingly support us to reach our goals.
Download your 20 minute podcast and Mojo of Flow tips here!

And if you would love some more free tips, please sign up for free book chapters and more here!

Love your work!

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The Work/Life Balance Myth

Recently a journalist asked me a whole lot of questions about balance. I found myself resisting the questions and realised that for me, balance is a myth! We have been sold the idea that balance is the Holy Grail and if we attain it, all will be well in our world!  I have two businesses and a life I love… I KNOW that is SO not true!!  Are you with me here?  When was the last time you found balance and how long did you keep it for?

When you have balance you have inertia.
  When you have balance you are always precariously waiting for something to shift and then you have to go off in search of balance again.  A healthy work/life balance is a cruel joke – it doesn’t exist in the way the media would like to portray it.  We are human BEings – not human balances!

So, what else is possible here?  I choose to BE flow rather than chase balance. Flow is living the life you love underpinned by an essence of bliss and joy.

When there is flow, we can find an ease to everything, possibilities arrive effortlessly and there is clarity around priorities and creating the life we desire – we thrive!  

With balance, we are always striving to fit everything in, always trading off self, home, family and work commitments.  

A healthy ‘balance’ to me is when flow is achieved on a daily basis – there is room for fluidity, flexibility, creativity and new potentials – we are open to possibilities rather than having things be a specific way and only that way!  When we stop controlling everything it opens up paths to our desire that may look illogical but actually offer the shortcuts to success we have been searching for.  

When in flow we operate from a space of expanding what’s possible, rather than limiting our life to ensure we can achieve balance. (I add choices to my life, rather than making either/or decisions which limit me).

When in flow we have awareness of what is required and what is possible, and we are willing to have freedom of choice, rather than a long list of ‘have-to, must-do, should-do’ items that derail us from our flow.  

What is the worst thing that could happen if you didn’t fulfil the list?  Who could help you with that list?  What could you stop doing that no-one would notice?  What’s next?  These are all questions that will help with creating flow.  And none of them require you to have balance – just the willingness to choose ease!  

Awareness creates choice. Choice creates flow.  Flow creates ease. Balance does not create choice, awareness, flow or ease!  The quest for balance creates structure and rigidity and limitations.  

What would it take for us all to have more awareness and more flow?
  Discover more through my free 'Festival of Flow e-class… I desire to create a Festival of Flow in the world… sounds way more enticing than balance don’t you think?

Love your work!

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The Cult of Done

I have a co-mentoring arrangement with another coach and we have a quick session by phone every Friday.  One of the things that makes us giggle are the multiple and creative avoidance mechanisms we have for (not) getting things done.

Whilst lots of progress is made, it's often not on whatever we've discussed the previous week... so when I came across this I knew it would make lots of small business owners feel infinitely better immediately!  Read this and you could probably take a long weekend or two starting right now ;-)

So here it is... the cult of done manifesto... a great recipe for overcoming overwhelm (momentarily at least!)

(via The Manifesto Project)

Yes, it's slightly tongue in cheek, but there were a couple of tips in there I'm really tempted to play with!  And I loved 'Failure counts as done. So do mistakes.'  That sorts out quite a few projects that I was getting back to later... (of course, failure doesn't really exist, it's just a big hint from the universe to change something!!)

What are your biggest challenges in getting stuff done?
  I'm a great starter... and I'm working on the 'done' bit with my awesome co-mentor!!  Do you have any other ideas you would add to the above manifesto?  Share in the comments below...

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Is time off the best productivity tool in the universe?

Stefan Sagmeister offers an inspirational perspective on the creative benefits of sabbaticals...

Personally, anytime I'm too tired, stuck or can't think, the best thing I can do is go and do or be something completely different to what I've been doing.

Half an hour in the hammock, taking the dog for a walk or cooking something delicious will reboot my brain and allow what I require to flow with ease. A whole weekend of being creative in all sorts of ways ensures that I can work at lightspeed during the week.

Whenever we have too much to do the solution is often in doing nothing or doing something different! What are the infinite possibilities of seeing your challenge differently?

What do you think? Please share your comments then go enjoy yourself!!

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Getting Past Meltdown Moments…

There must be something in the air at the moment – I’ve received at least 4 calls in the past week from people in various stages of distress, overwhelm and anxiety about what they are doing with their life, what their real purpose is and why their job or business isn’t working as they imagined.  The last question in each case was…‘can you help me feel better?’

In every case, I made a few simple suggestions that we can all employ when the need arises… we all have these moments, it’s what you do with them that counts!!
  1. Remember that ‘this too shall pass’ – but only if you do or be something different to what you have been doing or being! 
  2. Get really clear about what you most truly desire… write down everything that’s important to you and what you want to do before you die.  Look for the patterns and the things that make you go ‘zing’… then you can start to live your life meaningfully, rather than just getting through your days!
  3. Take a few deep breaths, sit quietly and ask whether this anxiety and overwhelm is really yours?  How often do we ‘buy’ the second-hand opinions of those well-meaning friends and family we know and love, and accept these ideas as real when we may actually want to do something completely different?  What if you returned all these ideas to these people, in kindness, and then started to ask questions about what you really would prefer to choose… would your life look different?
If you'd like some more strategies for getting yourself and your business on track, would the February Revive Playshop contribute more than you can imagine?  If you want more prosperity and productivity then it's for you.  Book today - it's on in Brisbane on Feb 15th...  Who knows, investing 3 hours to set yourself up for 2010 could be the most productive action you take all year!!

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Are You Unwinding Yourself Gently or Coming Undone?

Has the idea of work/life balance completely flown out the window? At this time of year it’s a common trap for business owners to go through a mad frenzy of doingness so that everything gets finished before Christmas.  Sound familiar?  Are you madly running around making everyone else happy at the moment?

In the process you get even more tired and cranky, you lose the joy of the season and the moment you go on holidays your body releases all its stresses by making you ill… it’s not that enticing right?

This year I’ve decided things will be different – I’m going to enjoy my holiday rather than recover from my crazy year… So, here’s 5 ways you can take the pressure off right now!

  1. Instead of doing everything now, do a big cleanup and write yourself a clear list of priorities for when you return  from holidays – you’ll go on holidays with a clear mind and a clean desk!
  2. Build in some ‘me time’ over the next week – what would nurture you?
  3. Say no to a few things instead of ‘shoulding’ all over yourself. Do you really have to…?
  4. Work at a more leisurely pace and be present with what you are doing… enjoy the moment and remember to breathe!
  5. Find at least 3 places you are being a perfectionist and be willing to set yourself a tight timeframe for finishing the task as well as possible, but maybe not as perfectly as you normally would – you’ll save hours!!
Want to be more productive in 2010?  Book your place at our first REVIVE Business Coaching Playshop for 2010: Prosperous Productivity will be held on Monday 15 February in Brisbane.

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Is your ‘to do’ list getting longer while your life gets shorter?

Over the past week I’ve been experimenting with my sweetheart in setting priorities.  Each morning we discuss/email our top 3 essential priorities for the day so that we can be more focused on what matters and more accountable for achieving results.  

Here’s what I’ve noticed so far:
  • We both always have more than 3!
  • If there is one ‘biggie’ on the list everything else falls out the window.
  • Some things seem to spill over day after day.
  • A lot of things get done which aren’t even on the list!!
  • We are both still working crazy hours.
Something's not quite working here!! Do any of these challenges sound familiar?  In the interests of achieving more outcomes that matter I’m going to finetune the strategy... 

  1. Set timeframes for each item – once the allotted time is up, its time to move on – finished or not!  (That’s sure to make me really think about how realistic I’m being in my expectations!)
  2. Delegate more.  Between my PA/Marketing Assistant, the cleaner and the amazing Kay at HecticHelpers  I’m sure I could be doing a lot less stuff that chews my time for little strategic result!
  3. Put aside one hour a day to do ’10 minute jobs’ so that I get a heap of the essential smaller things done each day.
  4. Strike a better balance between the strategic and the operational – both matter!
  5. Include more downtime – I’m not productive when I’m tired!
Do you have any other ideas which really work for you?  Please share them here!

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