Business goals and yoga are not two things you typically hear in the same sentence very often. But after starting my business 5 months ago, the two have been inseparable for me.
The Business Backstory
Earlier this year I decided it was time to branch off on my own and enter the world of consulting. While I knew starting a business was going to be tough, exciting, and time-consuming; I didn’t know how slow the progress was going to feel during this process. There were days that I felt I was knocking it out of the park and then other days where I felt nothing had been accomplished. And for someone who is very motivated by crossing things off a list, this was a huge problem for me.
I enjoy yoga as it helps clear my head, I feel strong afterwards (even on bad days) and I practice with a FABULOUS group of women so I am also empowered emotionally as well. I decided to set some yoga-related goals. First up…headstands!
Business and Yoga Collide
I have a home office and this allows me many opportunities, one of which is that I can practice my headstand in the middle of the day. When I was working at my desk and found that I hit a wall, whether it be loss of focus, frustration with a program, or the feeling of ‘can I do this?’, I would minimize the open windows on my computer, change the station on Spotify to an upbeat song and practice my headstand. I would try a few times and then go back to my computer and get to work.
What I didn’t expect was how much my yoga practice would help my business productivity. After attempting a few headstands, I would get back to my desk and end up crossing a few things off the list. Slowly I saw that not only was I making significant progress at my headstands but also with my business goals as well.
Through reflection of this process I found the following things to be the keys to success with goal achievement. This isn’t anything new but it was incredible to see how much it came to life when I looked at both a business goal and a physical goal at the same time. It heightened all of this!
Hold Yourself Accountable
Accountability is hard when you are the only person in charge of it. Tell as many people as you can, this way you will be encouraged to keep going so you will have something to say when they ask about your progress.
Practice Every Day
Whether it’s practicing a headstand, scheduling in time for business reading, or getting that inbox down to zero, attention to the goal every day is critical to success.
You can capture your progress on video/photo or you choose to journal or keep a spreadsheet, it doesn’t matter. Just find some way of tracking so you can go back and look at what you have achieved.
Set Short-Term Goals
You need short-term wins in order to achieve your long-term goals. So once you set the long-term goal, back into it with short-term goals to keep you motivated.
Keep Setting Goals
Once you accomplish a goal it is necessary to celebrate that win (Champagne, anyone?!) but then equally as important to set the next goal. Keep moving forward.
On that note, I am happy to say that while I had 3 months to achieve my free-standing headstand goal, I actually achieved this goal within 3 weeks!!! I don’t say this to toot my own horn (well, maybe a little) but rather to show that it happened using the tools that I just listed. It was not easy to get my body to flip upside down. Just like it wasn’t easy to start a business.
So whatever your goal is, I encourage you to pair it with a physical goal if possible. If for nothing else, it will provide some laughter in days of struggle when you try something and fall down. For some reason it was much easier for me to laugh when I fell down from a headstand than it is when I fall down from a business mistake. I am still working on learning how to laugh at both.