Conscious Planning: How To Embrace and Enjoy Your Annual Planning Process

by on 21 January 2016 in Members Blog


Sue Tsigaros, Consultant, Mastery Coach and Speaker at Iris Group explains how you can love every minute of getting the year started right.

Do you embrace and enjoy this time of year when many business owners are looking forward to new opportunities ahead, making exciting plans to create growth, innovation, leadership, or other outcomes in their businesses?  

Or do you enjoy the excitement of new ideas but have trouble converting them into plans that lead you to what you really want? Or do you dismiss it all as hype and wait for things to get back to ‘normal’?

Most likely you’ve heard the saying “Failing to plan is planning to fail”. A modern restating of one of Benjamin Franklin’s quotes “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” – combined with Winston Churchill’s “He who fails to plan is planning to fail”.

How do you feel when you hear this, or say it to yourself?

Three common responses that are NOT helpful are:

Resistance to the whole idea of planning: ‘I can’t be bothered, it’s too heavy-handed, I don’t relate to this, its only for others, I’ll just go with the flow’ – you probably postpone or avoid planning altogether.

Compliance: ‘well I’d better get on with it then, otherwise I’ll be left behind or miss out, so tell me what I have to do, please’ resulting in short-term engagement in anticipation of a quick ‘win’ often leading to disappointment with outcomes.

Obsession – a strong urge to ‘grab the bull by the horns’, jump in and specify everything, wanting to predict and provide controls for, every potential outcome; ‘I have to, I must, I should, if it’s to be it’s up to me, etc’.

Do you relate to any of these?

Each one is at some level triggered by fear.  Either a fear of failure or a ‘need’ to control (a fear-based motivator). These common fears are the ‘party-poopers’ of an otherwise healthy, happy and prosperous business and leadership journey! They may also deny you the opportunity of using planning as a wonderful tool and support to your business.

Conscious Planning TM comes from a mindset where we see ourselves as already worthwhile, having nothing to prove to anyone else. We are creative and abundant, with a desire to express and share our gifts, make the world a better place, create an empire if we wish and grow a business that creates a platform, to fund the lifestyle we thrive in.

From this place, it’s all an experiment, and ‘failure’ of an initiative, process, or plan is simply ‘feedback’, contributing to our learning.  From this place, the Franklin/Churchill wisdom makes more sense, as it becomes a reminder to ground your ideas by making them clear and quantifiable and testing them, so that you can implement and learn from them. From this place, we expect the unexpected and remain curious, open.

Does operating from that place sound more appealing? Would you also love to get some great tips and templates to help you get started on developing and executing a winning strategy this year? Sue will be talking at our Members Only Kick Start Event on January 28th or contact her at Iris Group.