Friday Final 15: Reflecting On Your Week

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Picture this: It’s Monday morning. You’ve shaken off the cobwebs of the weekend, and you’re ready to tackle a new week when you receive an email from a client or prospect, canceling their meeting for that day. Or maybe you’re the one sending the email, realizing over that first cup of coffee that you’re not prepared or you’ve accidentally double-booked yourself.

There’s nothing more frustrating than having taken time to prepare for a meeting that never took place! Well, I’ve got a magic wand for you. There’s an easy way to prevent you from being on the canceling end of this sticky situation again.

By the time Friday afternoon rolls around, most people have thrown in the towel. They’re done—totally checked out. And they wait until Sunday night or, even worse, Monday morning, to try and decide what they’re going to do that next week. Not only is operating this way stressful; it’s an awful way to try to run your business!

Take 15

If you truly want to be aware of what you’re doing and what you’re accomplishing, then it’s vital that you take time at the end of each week to reflect. This could be the most important 15 minutes of your entire week!

I recommend that you set a recurring appointment at the end of each week for this purpose. Now, this applies whether your week ends on Thursday at 4 pm, Friday at noon, or Friday at 5 pm. It should be the last thing you do before unplugging for the weekend.

This quick 15 minutes of self-assessment provides you the opportunity to really reflect and see, did you accomplish everything you wanted to? It also gives you a chance to prep for not only next week, but the following week as well.

Ask Yourself

Being mindful of how you’re really spending your time is vital to gauging your progress. Only you can hold yourself accountable for doing what needs to be done in order to reach the goals you set for yourself.  You can quickly measure your success for any given week by asking yourself these three simple questions:

1. How did I do on my non-negotiables this week?

We talked in a recent blog post about the importance of having non-negotiables. These immovable rules that you set for yourself are the core of your operating procedure. How did you do in making them a priority this week? Each week has its own challenges of course, but be honest with yourself about how closely you held to the standard you’re trying to set for yourself.

2. Did I do my best this week?

Look at yourself in the mirror and be honest. Did you really give it your all this week? Or were you just kind of winging it? Don’t give yourself a pass here; take a long hard look at what you accomplished and what you let slip through the cracks. We’re all human, but make sure you’re checking in to see if you put in the best effort you could given the circumstances.

3. Is there anything I would change about my actions this week?

Once you’ve evaluated the progress you made and what you achieved this week, take some time to consider what you want to change going into the next week. Take the time to be present. So often, we’re so busy getting stuff done that we’re not present in the time that we’re spending today, which prevents us from really making changes on where we need to improve in order to cross things off our list.

Once you’ve evaluated the progress you made and what you achieved this week, take some time to consider what you want to change going into the next week. Take the time to be present. So often, we’re so busy getting stuff done that we’re not present in the time that we’re spending today, which prevents us from really making changes on where we need to improve in order to cross things off our list.

Planning Ahead

The last aspect of this 15-minute exercise is to plan for not only the upcoming week, but the week following it as well. I cannot stress enough how incredibly important it is that you use your calendar (Outlook, Google Calendar, etc.) and that you always use the “week” view. If you’re only looking at the day view, you’re already missing out!

For example, maybe one of your non-negotiables is to do three hours of prospecting per week. If you’re using the week view (and color-coding your calendar), then you can glance at next week and instantly see if you have three hours marked off. Some of these meetings may have been set up weeks or months ago—review them now to make sure they are all still valid and that you don’t need to rearrange anything. Maybe you’re taking someone to lunch or hosting an event that you need to nail down details for. When you’re feeling great about next week, take a quick look at the week after that. By looking two weeks forward, you can get a better gauge on your time so you’re not scrambling at the last minute, and possible prioritizing what you need to work on next week if your schedule is sparse the following week.

Operating from this place of long-range planning allows you to really look at your calendar and ask, “What do I need to be doing?” instead of letting weeks just fly by without any structure. To truly be successful, you need to see the full picture. Planning this way gives you an easy snapshot of everything that needs to be done.

And if someone should happen to cancel on you first thing on Monday morning, you now know what you can plug into that space to not compromise productivity. Plus, you know how to make sure you’re never guilty of being that person again!

Until next time—go sell some stuff!

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