This is the contribution of the guests Suitcase entrepreneur, Natalie Sisson.
It’s also a great time to do some serious (but fun) revisions to your existing blog and business, just in time for a fresh start in the New Year.
More importantly, this is the perfect time to make sure that when you go on a well-deserved free time, all that hard work you put into your blog and online business during the year doesn’t fall into place.
I’m talking here about sexy systems and smart planning for the future.
So let’s get started, shall we?
According to the Urban Dictionary, the term Christmas decorations refers to:
- everything used or used for decoration or finishing;
- side dish or garnish;
- pieces cut off in pruning, trimming, trimming or pruning.
So how does it apply to our daily work?
- What projects do you plan to complete by the end of the year
- What you can polish, decorate and ‘pack’ what already exists
- What are you doing right now, to which you can add a bonus or an accompaniment that will only make your audience even more attractive
- What can you stop doing, get rid of, or clean up while you see 2021?
- How can you put the finishing touches on the work you have done and will do?
I’ll walk you through each of these, so you have five steps and actions to work on this month, and when you do, you’ll feel like a rock star and waltz into your carefree vacation bar .bar is such a plan!
Step 1. See which projects you want or need to complete
Remember January when you looked at your big plan for next year and felt that anything was possible? Yes, that plan … have you looked at it recently? If so, how much have you achieved?
If you’re like 99% of people, I guess about 1/5 really succeeded, maybe less.
Sadly, but true, we are not superhuman, which is why in our oversized pink glasses that we put on for the New Year, we think that this year will be different and that we will achieve everything.
So, if you still have the energy to burn and desire more this month than you have all year, I invite you to take a look at which of these projects can you actually deal with before the end of the year?
- Which of these projects did you simply procrastinate on?
- Which should never have been on the list that you can completely scratch?
- What would be quick wins that would actually make a big difference in your financial results at the end of the year or your sense of accomplishment?
These are the projects you want to focus on, discard the rest. And I would advise you to choose only 1-2 to be honest. Why? Because in about two weeks, your time will no longer be yours. It will be occupied by parties, friends, family, problems with rest and planning.
So be realistic. Your time is limited and precious.
Then take action:
Take a few selected projects, put them into your planning / productivity tool of your choice.
(I highly recommend Asana and read on The ultimate guide on how to use Asana to become a genius for productivity and task management.)
Set a deadline and from there work backwards with all the little tasks and things you need to do to make this project a reality.
Find a responsibility partner or bet with a friend that you can do it. Raise your stakes so that you are absolutely committed to making it happen … or tell your children that you didn’t buy them presents because you lost the bet – your calling.
Take every other to-do list off your plate and put it on someone else’s – preferably a virtual assistant or team member, or hire a contractor to complete those tedious but important tasks on your September to-do list.
Step 2. Polish, decorate and ‘pack’ what already exists
This step is my personal favorite. I recently announced my new brand identity and relaunched my website. This exercise in itself was a brilliant exercise in looking at all the opportunities I missed on my blog and in my work.
As I went through all 110 pages on my site to see if they were, in fact, necessary, I had to go back through the years of valuable projects, products, courses or initiatives I launched and see which ones could resurrect the past. .
I mean why reinvent the wheel if you already had a pretty phenomenal vehicle that worked for you? You just need to present the latest model that is smoother, faster and more efficient, right?
The same goes for all those blog posts you sit on. Go to Google Analytics and check out the top 10 blog posts that bring you the most traffic. Spend a rainy (or sunny) afternoon at your favorite location, going through them and seeing:
- What you can update in terms of copy / content
- Which call to action should you include
- Any other posts you can link to within your blog
- What are the opportunities to earn some money – from your own offers or affiliate offers
Then make a great rounding post on your website about the 10 best blog posts you should read before the end of the year (I could steal my own idea!).
Now take a look at which of these blog posts, videos, podcasts, workshops, webinars or speech events you can convert to something fresh and valuable, but in a different format.
You can turn audio into written content, video into audio, video into a mini course, email into blog posts, webinars into an e-book … the list is endless!
And all these existing ‘things’ that you are sitting on and that you have now polished and wrapped gifts, now make a great… ..
Step 3. Add an enticing bonus or escort to your tribe
Yes, a bonus or escort for your community and clients. If you started a blog challenge and people liked it, you can now follow the 10-page e-book that covers the main points of that challenge, which you can buy as a gift for yourself or a friend for Christmas – convenient!
Or you can issue a pre-holiday guide that presents a series of your best bonuses (which you just discovered during spring cleaning) that has given you a whole new life and extra income for the holidays in 2022 as well.
You should consider writing a blog post or recording a video or audio about your favorite:
- The books you read in 2021
- Podcasts you listen to every week
- The best TEDx conversations you’ve seen
- The best tools you have brought and love
- The best systems or software that has changed your business
- Christmas gift ideas related to your business
- 3, 5, 10 or 100 best things you learned this year
It’s a bonus they’ll keep giving!
Step 4. Stop. Evaluate. Action.
Since the above three steps are only about taking action and gaining a huge boost for the holidays, you also need to think about what you will stop doing to fit into this.
What will you keep, get rid of or clean up?
This is the perfect time of year to browse your online and offline folders and decide what the hell you are sticking to with those files, videos, photos, pictures, unread books, half-formed ideas or garbage?
Seriously, all of these things clog your space, and your space of mind. I’m a minimalist at heart and quite organized, but even I collected more ‘things’ than I needed.
As I stop using Dropbox and transfer everything to Google Drive this month, I am happy to report that I feel much lighter, freer and even more organized as I delete and shorten the amount of things I have stored that have no work is my job – if you understand what I think.
What will you systematize?
This is also a great time to look at all those files, documents and start creating sexy SOPs – these are standard operating procedures. What a fancy way to say, compiling a document that states exactly how a task or process should be done, step by step.
The point of this, even if it sounds tedious, is that the next time you format, edit and publish your blog post the way you want to do it in 17 steps …. you can fully delegate it to someone right away, over for the holidays or in the New Year, whoever follows your SOP should be able to do it exactly the way they want.
Then imagine how it will feel when you create SOPs for the 10 best tasks you do every day in your work, and how much freedom you will have when you hand them over, confident that you have systems that work FOR you while on vacation (and all the time) ).
Step 5. Finish your 2022 year
By now, you should reach for champagne or the massage voucher you were treated to, because you will be in great shape or you will get closer to work and a blog ready for the holidays.
And not just for this period, but forever. Of course you will have to work on that, and keep sorting, simplifying and trimming. But it will pay off, and it will be easier the more prepared you are.
Which leads me to complete your plans for 2022. Is there a better way to do this than to plan your entire editorial, content, and marketing calendar for the entire or at least the first three months of 2022?
It may sound scary, but since you’ve already done steps 1-4, you’re already ahead of the game, because through all your sorting, sifting, analysis and cleaning, you should now know what your audience and customers really want.
So now you can turn it into a complete calendar so that you feel super organized and have control over the year ahead. Then put it in Asana or Trello or a huge wall calendar and delegate.
Yes, decide who the hell is going to work to make it happen while you’re on vacation.
Turn to those SOPs you’ve created, the hard work you’ve just done to complete all those projects, undo all the great resources and content you’re sitting on, and put someone to work who will give you all your Christmas at once, with a big fat with a red bow on it!
I share how to do it in my free video training Return 10 hours a week and double your income.
Natalie Sisson is the author of the No. 1 bestseller on Amazon Entrepreneur Suite, a podcaster, speaker and adventurer who believes that everyone has the right to choose freedom at work and adventure in life and helps them do so in 2020. SuitcaseEntrepreneur.com.
This post was first published on December 6, 2016 and updated on December 2, 2021.