For all resources mentioned, see full shownotes at kendraperry.net/episode46
Ug, planning, right?
I used to f*****g hate planning. I resisted it. I told myself, “I’m spontaneous!” “I like to go with the flow!”
But in 2020, I didn’t plan and I ended up in an overscheduled mess that caused burnout and overwhelm. When you don’t plan, this is the most common outcome. No one wants to be a chicken running around with its head cut-off, right?
In today’s episode of Wealthy Coach Podcast, I’ll discuss some easy-to-implement planning strategies that you can use to get your 2021 dialed in.
Use my 2021 Planning workbook to get you started in planning a successful 2021: https://go.kendraperry.net/2021-planning
Connect with me on Instagram: @kendraperryinc
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Let’s Plan Out Your 2021 (For Success!)
I hope you’re doing good. We are coming to the end of 2020, the craziest year that I have ever lived personally, maybe you feel the same. We are looking forward to 2021. We have no idea what 2021 is going to bring us. Truly, we never have any idea. We tend to develop a false sense of control and we know when we can anticipate what is going to happen. There are a lot of extra elements that might be playing in toward 2021. Regardless of that, it is still so important to plan.
This is an important lesson that I learned in 2020 especially in early 2020 because I haven’t been a planner. I haven’t been someone who likes to plan. I like to be spontaneous and go with the flow, but not planning in early 2020 totally screwed me over and I ended up getting myself into this total overscheduled mess that was only relieved by COVID. It was overwhelming and it was a lot. I was struggling a bit with my health in early 2020. Things have gotten a lot better since but it was incredibly overwhelming, and it was exhausting and it was 100% my fault.
I learned the importance of planning in 2020. I also learned how important that is when I have a team. I can’t spring things on my team at the last minute. I can’t be like, “Surprise, we’re launching next week. I need you to do all this work.” Out of respect for my own mental health and physical health and also for respect for my team, I know I need to plan. You need to plan too even though maybe you don’t have a team, maybe you have a VA or maybe you’re doing everything yourself, you’re totally solo. Regardless, it is important to have a plan because when we don’t have a plan, we tend to double book ourselves or not give something that we signed up for the time it deserves because we took on too many things at once. I can’t tell you how many times in the past when I used to work with one-on-one clients that someone would work with me and be like, “I’m excited to work with you,” then they’d be on board and all of a sudden, they’d sign up for all these other things and realize that they didn’t have time to commit to the work we were doing together. Planning is incredibly important.
I’m going to take you through a simple exercise, so you can go total balls to the wall with planning. You can make it this whole big thing, you can spend hours doing it and that might be something you want to look into. Everyone’s a little bit different but for the purposes of keeping things simple, sticking with the minimalist vibe of this show, I’m going to go through an easy and fast planning exercise. Even if you’re glazing over and you’re like, “I should skip to the next show. Screw planning. This is boring,” this is going to be quick and easy. It’s not going to take a lot of your time.
I’ve created a planning workbook. I called it Plan It Up. It’s not creative, but I didn’t have a lot of creative energy in me when I made the name. This is a basic planning workbook that goes with this episode. I’m going to keep it simple, so stay with me. The first thing I want you to do is to do a complete and total brain dump. I want you to reflect on 2020 in terms of work and your business. This might require you doing a little bit of meditation so if you’re into meditation, feel free to take a few minutes to do a little meditation. Even if you’re not into meditation, it might be helpful to pause and take a few deep breaths and try to tap into how 2020 went overall for your business.
In the workbook, I have a whole page on this, I want you to list out all the things that went well in 2020, everything. All the things that you’re like, “That went well. I liked that.” Try to think of absolutely everything. This is a brain dump. This is your planning vomit. Dump it all out onto the workbook or in a journal. As an example, these are some of the things that went well for me in my business. Launching in general went well in 2020. All my live launches went incredibly well. That was cool. Every single one was successful. I managed to get clear on what I wanted my business and my day-to-day to look like, so that went well. Getting clear on that was a huge win. I did a good job of developing boundaries and learning boundaries. I did a good job at business development. I did some awesome programs this 2020 that helped me move my business forward and also helped me move my mindset and my personal development forward.
I also took about 2.5 months off-ish in the summer, so I didn’t take on any major projects. I basically worked on maintenance tasks in July, August and the first half of September 2020. That went well. I had a great summer. I did a lot of things and that helped me boost my creative power when I came back full-time in September 2020. Those are a few examples from my business on things that went well. I want you to think about everything like all the wins. Write them down and pause to do that.
The Things That Didn’t Work Out
The next thing I want you to do once you’ve done that is I want you to list out the things that didn’t work out for you. It’s good to look at the things that didn’t work so we can figure out how to fix those things or how to do better next time. A few examples from my own business. I mentioned this earlier in the episode, but I overscheduled myself, so I didn’t plan. That didn’t go well because my first 2.5 months of 2020 were stressful. I had way too much to do, I had a lot of pressure, I had a lot of deadlines, and I frankly didn’t enjoy it. I know that I don’t want to be over-scheduling myself like that because it was too stressful.
Another thing that didn’t go great this year was my evergreen launches. I had this idea in the beginning of summer 2020 that I was going to turn on ads and run them to my HTMA Expert Course and my Profitable Groups course and everything was going to be perfect. The evergreen aspect of launching I found to be way more challenging than I thought it would be. It honestly didn’t work and I’ve done a lot better with HTMA Expert organic. Putting less effort into trying to sell that has generated more sales, which is crazy. I realized that live launching is a lot easier and I enjoy it more. I love the live aspect of launching. Evergreen launching was not so good. Live events did not go so great for me in 2020 because we had two retreats planned for my mastermind program. One was at the end of March 2020, so that got canceled and one was in November 2020. That was stressful.
We had to do a lot of changing things up around the scenes. A lot of last-minute reorganizing and that sort of thing. We ended up with some contract issues with the resort and had to go through a bit of a wringer to get our deposit back. That didn’t go well. I was pretty hesitant to do live events. I’m not a live events type of person. I live in a small town. I don’t live near a major airport. It’s a lot of effort for me to travel. I don’t love airplanes, I don’t love cities and all of those things, so I was hesitant to do those anyways. I feel that 2020 was a message from the universe to say that live events are probably not something I should pursue.
The other thing that I found didn’t go the best for me was launching a do-it-yourself version of my course, Profitable Group. This was a course that I launched in May 2020. I put a lot of effort into it. I had a lot of great feedback from the actual course but I launched it DIY style, meaning it was basically an info product. You bought it, you did it self-paced, and there was minimal support from me. I didn’t love that. I thought that’s what my business model should have looked like, that’s what I wanted it to look like but once I did that, I was like, “I don’t like this because I don’t know where anyone is in the course. They have no means of connecting with me and asking me questions, there’s no energy and there’s no community aspect.” I wasn’t into that so I would say that didn’t go well.
Do a brain dump, list out all the things that you didn’t like, and come up with a plan on how you’re going to shift those things or do things differently. The true skill of a seasoned entrepreneur is to be able to pivot, switch things up, be resourceful and recognize when things didn’t go the way you planned and that’s okay. It’s way better for us to pivot and switch things up and try things differently than to stick with something that we clearly are not into and is not working.
What You Want Your Day To Look Like
The next thing I want you to do is I want you to think about what you want your day to look like in 2021. This is typically difficult for people to answer because a lot of us have no idea what we want our day to look like but this is important. If you’re going to manifest a business that you love, then you’ve got to know what your day-to-day looks like. This is probably another time where maybe you need to pause, maybe do a little meditation or go for a walk and think about what you want your day to look like. I’ll give you an example of what I want my ideal day to look like.
My schedule shifts based on the season because as you guys know, I’m into various outdoor sports, and depending on the season, I’m doing a different sport and I like to do that sport at a different time of day. For example, in winter, I go skiing. Typically, I go to the ski hill and I want to get first track, so I want to be on the first chair before everyone else comes in and everything gets skied out because I love the powder. That means that I don’t want to be working in the morning. I want to have most days available to go skiing if there is snow. If there’s no new snow, I want to be able to go cross country skiing or go mountain biking in the snow with my new fat bike which I bought.
Because our days are pretty short in the winter, I need to be able to get out in the morning. What my ideal day looks like is waking up naturally, I don’t wake up to an alarm, doing my morning routine, which might look like a few different things. I like to have a morning routine menu. I don’t do the same thing every day but I might do meditation, breathwork, an infrared sauna, go for a walk in the forest, read or color, that’s something I’m also into, and that will usually take a couple of hours. I like to have a long morning routine.
I am going to go skiing, go fat biking or go cross country skiing, and that’s going to involve me driving somewhere, doing the thing, whatever it is for a couple of hours and getting back probably around 11:00 or 11:30, having a quick shower and getting to work at noon. Between noon and about 5:00 or 6:00, I am supporting clients through my group coaching calls. I might be meeting with a one-on-one client, I might be working on projects, creating content, creating new products and that sort of thing. I finish up around 5:00 PM or 6:00 PM. I’ll go have an awesome dinner, I hang out with Ryan and we sometimes watch a show, we’re into Homeland, or maybe I color, journal, stretch and eat an awesome dinner.
Primary Offerings In 2021
Generally, that is what I want my day to look like in 2021. That is important for what we are going to do in a few minutes here because if you are trying to build a business that you love, then you want to work your business around what you want your day and lifestyle to look like. This is important so again, take as much time as you need to do this because this is going to help you determine how you’re going to work your schedule in 2021. The next thing you want to do is you want to figure out, “What are my primary offerings going to be in 2021?” For some of you, this might be private coaching or one-on-one clients. If that’s all you’re doing, that’s cool but I do encourage you to maybe launch a live workshop or something small, maybe do a challenge.
Shake something up. Do something a little bit different, because that’s always great to do and it could open up a whole other stream of income for you. Figure out what you’re going to be offering in 2021. Maybe that’s private coaching, maybe you plan to launch a course or group program, or maybe you want to launch a membership. I want you to make sure you write down what you are going to be offering in terms of products and services in 2021. Pause if you need to take some time.
Plan Out Your Time Off
The next thing you’re going to do, and I’ve given you a full calendar for 2021, and you are going to need four different colors of highlighters. Choose your four favorite colors. One is going to be for personal stuff. One is going to be for business stuff like launching, another one’s going to be for professional development and the other one’s going to be for your reassessment day, which I’m going to go through all of these. The first thing I want you to do and a lot of people don’t plan for this, plan out your time off and your vacations or anything significant.
Maybe your kid has something going on. They have a camp or soccer camp or something like that, so you know that during that time, you’re going to be driving them somewhere or whatever. Maybe you have to go visit family. Any time off, anything that is going to prevent you from doing your work and keeping you away from your business, you want to highlight that into 2021. This is going to help you not over-schedule yourself. You want to make sure that you have this all out on your calendar so you don’t plan something important in your professional life that overlaps and you feel screwed over or you’re running around a chicken with your head cut off.
I highly recommend that you schedule some time off every quarter. This is important even if it’s a half-day. It doesn’t need to be 1 or 2 weeks. It doesn’t even need to be a few days, but try to put one day or one half-day even aside for yourself every quarter, because with every quarter that you get through business, that is a huge win. You need to celebrate it. We don’t celebrate nearly enough. Typically, a lot of coaches feel a lot of guilt when they’re not working. They feel like, “I’m not making the money yet so I don’t deserve to have this time off.” You always deserve it. You were always worthy and deserving of that, so you need to celebrate the fact that, “I made it through another quarter in my business,” even if you’re still struggling, you’re still not where you want to be, you’re still not making the money you want to be. This is important and it is a guilt-free day. I schedule time off or fun things every single quarter. I do it more often these days as I can do that with my business but definitely at least once a quarter. Anything you want to put in this color, this is going to be your personal, that is going to take time away from you being able to do your business, any travel or trips, or whatever it is.
Plan Out Your Launches
The next thing is I want you to figure out if you plan on launching anything in 2021, I want you to highlight your launch periods. Launch periods require a lot of energy. These are good times to reduce your schedule to take on less private clients and fewer meetings, to open up that time period as much as possible. The length of your launch is going to depend. I find that an average launch period is about 5 to 7 days. It might be a little bit shorter if you’re launching a 90-minute workshop. It’s going to be longer if you’re launching something high ticket in the $10,000 and beyond, you’re going to have a longer launch period. You want to make sure that you know when this is and keep in mind that this is flexible.
We’re going to basically reassess every quarter and make sure everything still makes sense. I will put in my launch periods, but I move them around so make sure you highlight those out. Also, note that you can also do this in a Google Calendar as well. I move things around in my Google Calendar all the time, but I make sure that in terms of a launch period by about six weeks out, I know the exact dates. That’s important for my team, that’s important for my brain.
If you’re planning on launching a group program, a course or a membership if you want to do a live workshop, anything that you are going to be in a promotional period for. If you are doing one-on-one coaching and that’s all you’re doing, you don’t want to do anything else, you’re not going to be filling in much for this because you’re not technically going to be launching anything new. If there’s anything at all, you want to put it in your schedule because lunch periods require a lot of your creative energy.
Schedule Continuing Education Or Professional Development
The next thing I want you to do, and this is important for health coaches, is to schedule in time for continuing education and/or professional development. We are nerds, we love to learn, so you are probably going to be updating your education probably to keep up with your certification or your credentials. You might also be doing some business training. For example, maybe you’re going to sign up for Health Coach Accelerator in the middle of January 2021 and do my 90-day business building program, which will be super fun.
If you’re going to sign up for that, you want to put that into your schedule. When are you going to be putting time aside to work on the assignments from the Health Coach Accelerator or whatever it is? Regardless, even if you are not sure if you’re going to sign up for a course, put aside regular time to work on this stuff. Maybe every week, you do a couple of hours of professional development. Maybe you do it monthly or quarterly. Maybe quarterly where you have a full couple of days where you focus on that stuff.
This is important because we get excited when we see things, we’re like, “Let’s buy that,” and we don’t have time to complete it and we’ve over-scheduled ourselves. We have too much going on with work, now we’re in this course, we have these other things, these other engagements and now we’re overwhelmed because we’ve taken on too much. It’s super important to schedule that out at regular intervals. If you’re taking some course, maybe you’re doing a yoga teacher training, Health Coach Accelerator or maybe you’re doing some other type of program, make sure that is scheduled if you do know those dates and time. It’s important.
Pick A Reassessment Day
The final thing you’re going to do, and this will be your fourth color, is pick a day for reassessment. This is going to happen quarterly. It’s going to happen at the end of every quarter. For example, when you look at the calendar that I gave you inside the workbook, there are four rows and there are three months in each row. At the end of March, sometime in that last week of March, you’re going to put aside a half-day to reassess. You’re going to look at the upcoming quarter and make sure that it all makes sense. If you want, you can even start looking into the future quarters and edit anything because the truth is, we need to be flexible.
If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that sometimes your plans have to go out the window. We have to change course, we have to pivot. Sometimes we’ve got to chuck things out and start over. You do want to not be super committed to your 2021 plan, but you do want to be committed to your quarter as much as possible. It is good to see the whole year at a glance, look at everything, get it all down and change it as time goes on.
What you could do is take my calendar here, and every quarter reprint it out and edit it as needed based on the new information that you have. This is going to make you feel super organized. If you do have someone on your team, if you do have a virtual assistant, they are going to love you for this. When you plan this out, you may even want to include them in the planning session that you do. If you’re not going to include them in the planning session, then you should definitely share the plan with them.
The final thing that we’re going to do is a little exercise is going to help you make decisions and help you determine if you should say yes to opportunities in 2021 because this is something that happens to a lot of coaches is they get excited by new opportunities. There are a lot of shiny objects that are going to start coming your way the more you are in business, and you cannot say yes to all of them and you should not say yes to all of them. If you do say yes to all of them, then you are going to be in the overscheduled mess that you don’t want to be in.
This involves knowing what your values are. It’s important. This is an exercise I do with my Health Coach Accelerator members which is important for branding. In the workbook, I have a link where you can get a list of all the most common values. If you google, “List of values,” you’ll find some pages on that. I want you to go through and pick out your ten top values. For example, some of my values are freedom, integrity, fun, adventure, connection and friendship. Those are some of my core values. I want you to choose ten of the most important ones. You’re going to have to pause. Make sure you have the workbook, click the link or go to Google and search for a list of values and pick out your ten top values, the ones that you think are the most important to you.
Next, I want you to narrow it down to your top five. Pause and pick out the five most important values to you. This is going to be what helps make decisions in 2021. Every time you are presented with an opportunity, you have to ask yourself, “Does this align with my values?” If it does, that’s great. It doesn’t still necessarily mean you should say yes to it but if it does, you’re then going to look at your calendar, look at the time commitment, look at your weeks, and determine if it makes sense to say yes, “Can I fit this into my calendar?” Because everything we say yes to, it means we say no to something else and that’s okay.
We want to say no, but we want to make sure that not only is it in alignment with our values, but also we are okay with saying no to other things in order to work on this opportunity, project or whatever it is. If it is not in alignment with your values, don’t even look at your calendar or your plan, it is not going to work. I’m going to give you a quick example. One of my number one values is freedom. I want freedom and I don’t want to work eight hours a day. I want freedom in my workday. I want a short workday. If somebody presents me with an opportunity that’s going to compromise my freedom or give away too much work to my plate, I’m going to say no.
I get opportunities every other day. Every week, I get multiple people emailing me, offering me brand deals, asking me to be on their podcast or do something, and that’s great. I am so grateful for every opportunity that gets sent my way because there was definitely a time early on where that never happened. I say no to the majority of opportunities that come my way because I am clear on what my values are, what I want my day to look like, what my offerings are and I’m clear on my mission.
That is our mini planning session for 2020. I hope that helps. I hope you feel a little bit clearer on what your amazing 2021 is going to look like. If you like this episode and you got something from this episode, let me know. Take a screenshot if you were on your smartphone. Share it with your Instagram Stories, tag @KendraPerryInc, so I can personally thank you and let me know your take homes in that story. I would love to connect with you, chat with you and I’d love to know each and every one of you who reads because I appreciate you, and I am incredibly grateful for you. That is it for this episode. I will see you at the same time and same place where I help you go from broke AF to wealthy AF.
Thank you so much for reading. I’m wondering, do you want to help me with my mission to end health coach poverty? If you do, I need all the help I can get. All I need is two minutes of your time, if you could leave me a five-star review on iTunes, that would help so much. These reviews help get my podcasts in front of more people which means that I can reach more health coaches and complete my mission. Thank you so much for your help. I can’t wait to talk to you in the next episode.