planning in business

About the Episode

Hey Outlaws, welcome to episode 39 of The Entrepreneurial Outlaws. Today on the show I’m sharing the five ways you can challenge the status quo of planning. What do I mean by the status quo of planning? This looks like attaching our self worth to productivity, shaming ourselves for inability to batch or plan ahead, or being consistent for the sake of consistency on social.

I continue to challenge the ways in which I have been taught to plan and strategize, and I believe you can do the same under your own terms, too. This is what it means to outlaw your planning — shifting from the rules and the status quo, challenging it, finding your own unique path and really stretching your Entrepreneurial Outlaw wings so that you can lean into what makes you feel more human.

So, grab your favorite resource or tool for reflecting, and dig in with me.

planning in business

Topics discussed in episode #39

Topics Discussed:

  • Learning how the status quo of planning is embedded in your business and what this means for you as a business owner
  • Understanding the difference between motivation and inspiration and how creativity comes into play
  • Why the key to mindful work is understanding what you need from your business
  • How to establish boundaries that are in alignment with what you need and the importance of asking for help
  • Giving yourself the permission to work at your own pace with trusted tools and resources
  • How your spiritual practices will help you challenge the status quo

Episode Resources:

Connect with Melanie here:

planning in business


Speaker 1 (00:05):

So we're going to explore five ways in which we can challenge the status quo of planning in our businesses. These are five ways in which I continue to challenge the status quo of planning. I continue to challenge the ways in which I have been taught to plan and strategize. I'm going to preface this by saying that these five, these five ways, these five tips, they are much more spiritual. They are much more focused on you as an individual than data. So this episode is much less about data driven, planning and more about planning that is aligned with you as a possum.

Speaker 1 (01:00):

Before we explore those five ways to challenge the status quo of planning. I think it's really important that we look at what the status quo of planning is. How does it appear in our business? How does it affect our business decisions? So I see the status quo of planning as anytime we're attaching our self worth our value, our success to how productive we are in any given day, week, month. And so on. It often looks like shaming ourselves for how far ahead we can plan whether or not we are able to batch days, weeks, months of content. It also appears when we look at things like social media, how consistent we are, the idea that we should be consistent for the sake of consistency sake, rather than looking at the ways in which we approach social media as intuitive or how we are feeling so much of business is focused on our audience, right?

Speaker 1 (02:18):

And that's okay because they are the ones that are going to pay us, that audience could become a client or customer makes sense, but we are the business owners. And it's really important that we think about ourselves. And it's especially important when we think about ourselves behind the scenes, because how we show up behind the scenes for ourselves will directly affect how we show up in the public eye. It will directly affect how we write and create and show up for our audience, clients, customers. The status quo of planning is often rooted in shame. We will often try to apply more restrictions, more rules to our work. We usually trying to motivate ourselves, right? And motivation is a push energy. We will try and push ourselves into planning. You can probably relay and think of many times in your life, not just in your business, where you have had to try and motivate yourself to do something.

Speaker 1 (03:30):

For me, that's often been around exercise. I think exercise is a very very relatable situation. The many people that we have to motor us out motivate ourselves. The opposite of motivation is actually inspiration. So motivation is this push energy. We're pushing ourselves to plow with pushing ourselves to do something. Sometimes it can be productive. Sometimes it can be good for us to motivate, but it's usually not. It's not something we can do for lengthy period of time. It's short-lived. So what we want to try and do is be inspired. Inspiration is a pull energy. So if we can inspire ourselves to pull, if we can be inspired by our planning and strategizing, then we're being cool to it. We're being pulled towards it. This is where we start to look at. We move from kind of data-driven information to how we feel. I often consider that the data-driven information is the stuff that motivates us, right? We see a cell coming in that is motivating. Is it inspirational? Maybe, but often from for many of us, especially empaths and highly sensitive folks, the things that inspire us, our creativity, how we feel, the conversations we have human experience is in itself inspirational.

Speaker 1 (05:03):

So when we're challenging the status quo of planning, it's all about tapping into our own unique wisdom, right? Our inner wisdom and our intuition so that we can plan from a place of inspiration. Our planning becomes inspired and joyful and filled with ease, which naturally leads us to more passion, more creativity in our work. I don't think you can motivate yourself to be creative creativity at its core is inspired. So if you are a creative or there are parts of your business that are creative, and those are the parts of your business that you really enjoy, but feel like you don't get to maybe spend enough time on, or perhaps you've been told they're not profitable. And so therefore you shouldn't spend your time on them. I actually encourage you to figure out ways which you can do more of those things because creativity is inspiring. It inspires us. It literally feels our cup.

Speaker 1 (06:07):

And when we do more of that, we'll continue to go through this cycle of being inspired because we can see how it feels. We can feel it. And that feeling when it's aligned with how we want to feel and what we want to do in our lives, we're going to keep on doing more of that. So how do we challenge it? How do we challenge that status quo of planning? How do we tap into our own unique inner wisdom? The first way in which we can challenge the status quo status quo of planning is by understanding what we want and need from each area of our business. This is especially true with social media or marketing. What I see in my own business. And for majority of the people I work with is that we are performing certain tasks, mindlessly.

Speaker 1 (07:04):

We understand the purpose of a specific area of our marketing. We understand the reason why we do it. We know why we do it, we get it right? So let's just use Instagram as an example, we understand why we plan for Instagram. We understand why we create content for Instagram. There are parts of Instagram that we love. Very few of us are closing the app and saying, well, that was fun. I really enjoyed my time on there. So I encourage anyone to start to identify what you want and need from each area of your business. Those things can be data-driven right. This is how much money I need. This is how many email subscribers I need. But when you think about it from a place of necessity, like, I need this not, I want this, it changes it reframes the whole thing. So when you say, I want, I want to grow my list. I want 100 new email subscribers over the summer. So why, who cares? Like what does that mean to your business?

Speaker 1 (08:15):

That's where understanding the need comes in. Why do you need a hundred email subscribers? Do you need 100 email subscribers? What do you believe is going to change about your business? If you achieve that? So understanding what you want and need for each area of your business, it reframes why you're doing that thing. Sometimes what we can also discover is that the way in which we are doing that task, the way in which we are creating, writing, whatever it may be is actually holding us back. Maybe we are motivated to do it with forcing ourselves to do it, but it's not fun. And when we actually explore it, we realized that perhaps we don't need to do it in that way, or perhaps we don't need to do a tool.

Speaker 1 (09:09):

So the second way we can challenge the status quo of planning is by using the feelings and thoughts that come up in the first step to help us establish boundaries, boundaries with ourselves, our business, and the time we spend in each area, we can start to establish boundaries in alignment with what we need. And that allows us to understand why we're doing something, what we're going to get from that. It really allows us to be kind of in a self audit mode, because we can check in with ourselves on a regular basis. We'll become more self-aware and we'll become more aware, something in our business isn't quite working in the way we had hoped we're not getting what we need or we want, and we can figure out how to shift and reframe that. The other thing is also asking for help, asking for help can really, really well.

Speaker 1 (10:11):

It can help asking for help, helps it can change the way in which we see or approach certain areas of our business. It doesn't have to mean hiring somebody. But if you have a friend who is also a business owner, a peer, someone who that you can speak to somebody who you trust, someone who you can explore an ex and explain how you're feeling that can really make a massive difference. And as someone who personally finds, asking for help hard, this is a practice, but I found is that when you do ask for help, but when you, you know, you reach out and say, can we just talk about something I'm really, I'm feeling stuck with something, just talking it through. Oftentimes we already know the answer and we figure out just by having the conversation, asking for help really helps the third way in which we can challenge the status quo planning is by acknowledging the season that we are in right now, and then allowing it to unfold without judgment.

Speaker 1 (11:17):

We all experienced seasons, not just through weather, right? Not just spring summer, autumn, winter. We experience seasons within our businesses within our lives. There are seasons where we are busy. There are seasons that are slower [inaudible] we are allowed to feel those seasons, acknowledge them and allow them to unfold without judgment. The judgment piece is really critical because what can happen is for example, let's take January as a really good example in online business. At least in the bubbles I've been in, in online business, January seems to be this season of hype. Everyone's launching something, right? It's the new year new year's resolutions are word of the year. It's like, there's really hyped up months. I've never understood why. I've never felt that feeling. I like January, it's my birthday month, but I like to kind of extend the, the holidays into January. And so I really don't really feel like doing anything until February at the earliest, how many times I have felt like there's something wrong with me that I should do something anyway.

Speaker 1 (12:43):

And I've spoken to so many business owners who feel the same, that January is just not the right time for them to want or to try and do something new right now, as I record this we're in the summer. I don't like the heat. I am not a summer person. I'm praying for September 1st and often in the summer. It's the season of like excitement and doing things and being outside. And it's always been this season that has felt kind of busy. I just want to slow down. I don't want to be busy in the summer. I don't want to do all the things. There's too much pressure when there's a nice sunny day. It was too much pressure. I just want to chill. And so for me, I feel like I'm going against what the narrative is. What I've learned is that it's okay to acknowledge your own seasons, your own cycles, your own energy, and then allow it to unfold without judgment.

Speaker 1 (13:43):

It's okay. Right. You can challenge quarterly planning. You can challenge the ways in which we taught to plan our businesses, and you can start to acknowledge your own seasons and you might have more than four, right? You might have many seasons in your business also. Okay. Be really curious, explore them the fourth way that we can challenge the status quo of planning is by use or finding tools and resources from people that we trust and then using tools and resources from people that we trust. The trust part is really important. Trust has been broken time and time again in online business. So when we can find people who we trust and have respect for, that's really important. And then if we can use tools and resources from those people without judgment, right? So there's no kind of, you have to do it this way. Do not question me right.

Speaker 1 (14:50):

You can use, you can use the resources. You can find your own way of doing things. It's really powerful. It's really powerful to be allowed to do things on your own times and to start to do those things on your own terms. So for example, I absolutely love using my mindful productivity guide and the Brent number by last week's guest, Sarah Sackler, using both of those guides, the books and the guides has helped me ease back into planning. If I had sat down with a planner that was dated and there was this expectation, right? Sometimes you probably know what I mean. Sometimes you'll get a journal or a planet, and there's this expectation. There is this expectation that you're going to color in that you're going to add this, that, and the third, I am not that kind of planner person. So I want something that is undated.

Speaker 1 (15:54):

I can't do dated. I need that flexibility. And one of the things that stood out to me with Sarah's work is that it literally says you can pause. And I'm like, I'm here for pausing because you know, there's going to be something, something will happen at some point in the next year where I'm going to forget, I'm going to fall off the planning wagon, and I'm going to need to take a step back or I'm going to skip a week or something. And it's okay. So I need that permission, right? I need that permission in my planning. So when you can find people whose tools and resources, you trust and respect, and that they have similar views, similar values, it really can help you ease into planning in a different way. It can support your creative projects. It can support the behind the scenes of your business without feeling like there's additional pressure without feeling like now you need to spend your whole weekend getting ready just to use your planner or plan out things.

Speaker 1 (17:01):

Again, if you are someone who loves to do that, then that's fine. But if you're somebody who doesn't, if you're somebody who needs it to be simple and easy, and that if you want to, you can. And if you don't, you don't need to, like for me, that, that I need that flexibility. If I want to use washi tape and my highlighters, that's great, but I don't want it to be the expectation that that's what I'm going to be doing. So finding tools and resources from people that you trust and respect is really powerful. It will help you to challenge what you've been taught. You don't have to do things the way they're done. You don't have to use the most popular journal or planner out there. Do your research find people that you trust the fifth and final way of challenging. The status quo planning is leaning into our spiritual practices, our creative routines, and creating space in our day to check in with ourselves, to check in with how we're feeling.

Speaker 1 (18:09):

I think that journaling is an incredible planning tool. I always John all before I look at my calendar or look at the way in which I'm going to plan out my day, because by leaning into my own spiritual practice, by leaning into my own creative routine, by creating that space for myself, it allows me to lean into my creativity. I'm able to have some, I have some of my best ideas when I'm journaling and I'll just scribble them right there in the journal. I will think of content or ideas right then and there, because it's inspired when we are inspired to write, we're inspired to journal when we're inspired by those practices and routines that we have created for ourselves, whether it's journaling or anything else, it challenges what we believe about planning and strategizing. It opens up some space. It's expansive. We're able to check in with ourselves. We're able to check in with how we're feeling. We're able to see, okay, am I ready for this? Am I ready for this day? Am I ready for wide planned?

Speaker 1 (19:31):

And we're able to make adjustments if necessary and really challenge what we've been told it has to look like, right? So by challenging the status quo of planning, we're now not attaching ourselves worth our value or our success to how productive we are in a day. We're not worrying about how far ahead we can plan because we're not in competition with anyone else it's about you. It's about how you feel on any given day was shifting from pushing and motivating ourselves to being pooled and inspired by our planning. We enjoy it. It becomes a very natural part of that routine because there is no shame and we are have the permission to do it on our own terms. This is the state. This is challenging. The status quo of planning. This is what it means to outlaw your planning, right? Shifting from the rules and the status quo, challenging it, finding your own unique path and really stretching your entrepreneurial outlook wings so that you can lean into what makes you feel more human. You can lean into your creativity and you can be inspired by that.