- July 14, 2017
- Posted by: Stephen Johnson
- Category: Vistage
The Success Planning Appointment (“SPA”)
Most people are reactive vice proactive in their personal and business lives. By being more intentional and process oriented, we can get more done with less effort. A post from my good friend Mike Scott this past week reminded me of another process he taught me – how to be your best and get more done with less effort by “going to the SPA” twice each day.
The SPA for Mike is a first-thing-in-the-morning and last-thing-in-the-evening appointment with yourself: your Success Planning Appointment.
Start today. As the last thing you do today take 10 minutes to review your day.
- Get a pad of paper to make a list. If you are in sales, plan to make two lists (one list of action items that will lead to a sale, and a second list for all other action items.) As you go through the process, ideas for things you need to do will spring into your mind. Write them down on your list(s). You must write things down. Nothing increases the probability that something will be done like writing it down (between 3X and 10X). Studies show that electronic lists are “OK,” and not nearly so effective as written ones.
- Review your day. What successes did you achieve? How did you achieve them? What could you stop doing for greater success? What could you start doing for greater success? (Add action items to list(s) as appropriate.)
- If you are working on making some new behavior, or some new way of being, a habit, congratulate yourself when, in retrospect, you find you had some success today. DO NOT CRITICISE YOURSELF IF YOU DIDN’T ACHIEVE ALL THAT YOU WANTED OR WERE NOT AS SUCCESSFUL AS YOU “WANTED” TO BE. We are all works in progress. Only positive thoughts here.
- Prioritize you lists.
- Allocate a specific time for doing each task. (Turn your tasks into appointments.)
- Review your calendar for tomorrow. Visualize yourself being successful at each appointment. If it is a sales call or other personal interaction, visualize how the interaction will go, and what you will do to make it a success. If you are working on making a new way of being a habit, visualize how you will use that new way of being to achieve your successes.
During the evening, things will “pop” into your thoughts. Keep a pad and paper handy and write down these thoughts in complete sentences. (Anybody besides me every tried to decrypt a note to self because it didn’t contain a complete thought?) Do nothing with these thoughts unless you absolutely must take physical action tonight. They will wait until morning, and you will not have to “be sure to remember to…” because you have written them down (get it out of your brain and enjoy your evening!).
First thing in your business day tomorrow morning.
- Review any notes you made to yourself last night. Add them to your list. Additionally, your brain has been processing “in background” all night. You are smarter this morning than you were last night. Reprioritize, reschedule, and re-plan as necessary to take account of your new insights from your subconscious.
- Visualize your day. For each interaction, visualize how you are going to be successful in each of your tasks, appointments and interactions. If you are working on making a new way of being a habit, visualize yourself using that skill or way of being effectively in each interaction.
Rinse and repeat daily. (Hint – put your morning and afternoon SPA appointments as recurring items in your personal calendar!)
Each month, review how going to the “SPA” has improved your success. Think of what behaviors or ways of being, if they were habits, could improve your success. Repeat the process and add other desired skills or behaviors to your list so that you are working on no more than two things for improvement each month.
Enjoy your trips to the “SPA” and your increased success!