Try these 5 rituals in your small business
Do rituals and Small Business go together? Absolutely.
A ritual: “A prescribed, established or ceremonial act.”
A few well-placed rituals can make or break your business in 2019.
Perhaps you already have some rituals: after dinner drinks on Friday, a group walk on a Wednesday, a particular barista at a particular coffee shop for your morning hit. Maybe you even have a ritual of drawing up a task list at your favourite view each week.
Keep doing whatever works, and perhaps add the rituals I swear by from my years of experience in running my own Small Business and coaching others who run theirs.
If you’re anything like me, each year at about this time you set New Year’s Resolutions, and each year in about February you break them.
The bad news is most people break most New Year’s Resolutions. The good news is that small changes of behaviour, or what I call rituals, can have a bigger impact than we imagine, particular in our business lives.
They’re small tweaks for big impact, and make changes really stick. Through years of coaching business owners and thought leaders, and people who are creating powerful change in the world, this is what I have learnt: Rituals work.
Try these 5 powerful rituals:
RITUAL 1 – WEEKLY MANAGEMENT MEETING WITH SELF.
Why? Because when you connect with yourself once a week and tweak your Life Design (as Gill McLaren calls it in her book, Think. Plan. Live., remarkable things happen. And because your Mentor Within (that I write about in my book, The Mentor Within) knows what’s best, that’s the best person to consult. Both books have some great tips to help you with managing yourself.
Tip: Check in on your goals, holistically. Make the meeting at the same time every week, just to think back and plan forward. Diarise it! And make sure no one interrupts.
RITUAL 2 – WEEKLY MEETING, ONE TO ONE, WITH EACH KEY PERSON YOU WORK WITH.
Why? For intense listening and engagement. And because nothing can go too far off the rails in one week.
Tip: Let the person in the more junior position set the agenda. If the meeting is between you and your client, let your client set the agenda. This is not a management process, it’s a time for intense listening and engagement.
RITUAL 3 – WEEKLY CHECK-IN WITH AN ACCOUNTABILITY BUDDY.
Why? Because you can’t trust yourself to stick to your new year’s resolutions or goals or intentions. Remember?
Tip: Decide on three things you will do that week. Then when you check in, you’ve either done them or not. Don’t give reasons and excuses, just both notice what has happened. Then set the next three tasks.
RITUAL 4 – A RETREAT FOR ONE, ONCE OR TWICE A YEAR.
Why? Because we must reset our course every now and then. And the best way is to stop and think and spend the time in nature or somewhere wonderful alone or with some help. Just do it. You’ll be amazed.
Tip: Focus on your highlights to date in each area of your life, and your goals until the next Retreat for One. Just that. And make it superbly enjoyable. Perhaps a little hop to Fiji for a day or two …
RITUAL 5 – ABSOLUTE ‘ME’ TIME.
Why? Because if you don’t put on your own oxygen mask before helping others …
Tip: Diarise guilt-free pure pleasure time. You time. Doing stuff you love. Being absolutely you. Just do it. It’s a magic ritual. And you’ll be energised.
Get some help if you need it.
And if you need any more convincing, this is what I regularly hear from clients:
“I don’t know how, but that management meeting with self and weekly accountability email is magic. It just works. You said it would, and it does.”
The weekly accountability email which summarises all of this is an accountability ritual on steroids. It’s the top check-point for sticking to your goals. Enlist a friend or get a coach to watch and support you to do the rituals that work for you.
Implement rituals in 2019 to help to hold yourself to account. You’ll be able to look back this time next year and shout “Yes” as you punch the air. Try it.