We are the change

5 steps to finding the perfect fit for your ‘Business & Lifestyle’: Step 3 STRUCTURE

Where your DREAM is your essential starting point and the impetus that provides the meaning behind all you do and FOCUS allows you to stay connected to that meaning and concentrate your time and energy towards achieving it, it’s the STRUCTURE you create that will take you seamlessly from where you are now to where you want to be.

If the word ‘structure’ makes you think constraint, limitation and lack of creativity, bear with me. Structure is going to help you create more space for creativity and enjoyment while taking care of business – literally!

The reality is a little structure can go a very long way. It gives you daily repeatable tasks that slowly build towards creating the business and lifestyle you want. It makes sure those things that must happen for your business and life to work, do happen. As your business becomes more successful, it’s the structures you have in place that will help you to keep things running smoothly.

Remember that businesses and relationships are built slowly, day by day, interaction by interaction. Structure gives you a framework that you can use to consistently build your business and relationships day in and day out, so you can trust that you’re doing what you need to do to achieve your dream.

Structure also gives you something to fall back on, when motivation is sorely lacking, your confidence is running low or when you’d simply rather be doing anything but building your own business (yes – we all have those days!). So where do you start?

Build a structure that supports your plans & ultimately, your dream.

In step one – DREAM – I talked about creating plans and goals that support your dream which encompassed achievement, learning and enjoyment. In this step we bring support to the goals and plans.

Begin by mapping out your milestones; where do you want to be in one, three, six, nine & twelve months? Think about what you want to achieve as well as what you’d like to learn and what you want to do for enjoyment. Let each timeframe build naturally into the next in a seamless progression into your twelve month milestone which will mark a significant step towards your dream.

Create daily habits for success & balance, achievement & fulfilment.

Now that you know what you’re aiming for, turn your attention to the key daily actions that will lead you towards your milestones. What daily habits will you need in place for your business? Will you be engaged in daily business development, daily marketing, daily networking or daily client care, mastering a business critical skill or being firm with clients or team members who test the boundaries? Or maybe you’ll be reconnecting daily to the goals and plans you’re steaming towards!

What about your home life? Will your daily habits include dinner with the family at the table, leisure time with people who inspire or energise you, or adhering to a routine where responsibilities are shared to make space for simply spending time together?

Last, but by no means least is you. What daily habits will keep you strong, healthy, ready and willing to experience each day? Is it early morning exercise, meditation before the day begins, journaling to clear your mind, lunch away from wherever you’re working, a 15 minute window – or a relaxing piece of music on your commute – to transition from your work day to your home life?

It’s often the simplest of things which done consistently, make a big difference to our success and our enjoyment.

Remember, structure is there to support your focus and ensure you stay centred on those things in your business and life where you get – and give – great value. That’s going to mean saying goodbye to some of the things you’re used to doing that are no longer business or life necessary. To drive that point home, let me share an uncomfortable truth with you:

“Everything on your plate was put there by you.”

It’s annoying I know, particularly if you’re feeling weighed down by expectations and responsibilities. The good news though is that it also means you are in charge of what goes onto your plate.

It can be too easy to slip into feeling as though you need to do it all. If you identify with that, let me reassure you that you are not alone. I have been there too and have to catch myself regularly to remind myself that I’m no longer in a high pressured corporate environment surrounded by teams who are relying on me with the weight of huge financial deliverables hanging over my head.

I am my own boss. I know what needs to be done (even if I sometimes avoid doing it), I set the tone for the business relationships I create, the structures I put in place to make sure my business is growing and giving me the lifestyle I want. I’m more in control of how I spend my time and energy now than I have ever been and it’s up to me to make it work – on every level.

Creating the structure that works best for you and what you’re aiming for means you can make sure whatever is on your plate is relevant to you and your business and manageable. So let’s begin…

Simple steps to remember as you create structure this month:

1. Map out your milestones; where do you want to be in one, three, six, nine & twelve months? Think about what you want to achieve as well as what you’d like to learn and what you want to do for enjoyment.

2. What are the daily habits that you can start practising now that will support in reaching your milestones?

3. Begin tracking your activity so you’ll know which parts of your structure work best for you.

Don’t forget to grab the companion workbook to the series here! Workbook

And let me know what daily habits you create to support your milestones below and I’ll see you next month for Step Four!

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  1. Trisha Proud says

    As a trainer I talk about “balance” all the time; in fact I would go as far as saying that it is my favourite word! I particularly like the advice that says “Creating the structure that works best for you….” To me this is the nub of the issue as everybody is different and it is this that will strike the right balance between business and lifestyle.
    Trisha Proud
    Mother, Wife, Author of “Soulmate”, Business Owner of Partners in Solutions Ltd and much, much more!

  2. Teresa Mitrovic says

    Trisha, thanks so much for your comment. I find I get a mixed reaction to the word balance; some people love what it implies, while others interpret it as an even split – something they don’t expect in life depending on where they’re at with their career or business. That’s why I emphasize what works for people – ultimately I believe we CAN have it all if we’re defining ‘all’ for ourselves. Sometimes that’s the biggest block! Learning how to live up to our expectations instead of everyone else’s. Glad you enjoyed it!

  3. Heather Waring says

    Teresa, thank you for this great article. So many things make up the structure and for me, my structure that I teach is the RouteMap that helps people stick to their path and helps them also when they are tempted to take other opportunities that may lead them off their path. The boundaries that we use as part of the structure and the clarity we have developed within the structure all help to make the decisions.

    I love structure and totally agree with you that it allows us the spontanaiety and flexibility by having it in place. Balance for me is also good and of course balance is always in flux and things move and change but that’s ok, it’s when it is completely out of balance for too long that problems arise.