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Archive for October, 2010

What is The Single, Most Important Part of Retirement?

I hope you got to answer those questions about retirement last month. This weekend I rode my bike on the MS 150 (that’s 150 miles) to raise money to help cure MS. As I was riding I was thinking about some of the responses I got from last month’s column.

By far the number one most important part of a retirement is your health. We all seem to know this, but we don’t do much about it. It’s almost as if we’re numb in that arena. We plan in other areas for this stage of life and think that health will take of itself. When we start feeling less healthy than we did a few years ago, we brush it off as though it’s okay that we are just getting older. Yes, we are! Our hormones are changing. We lose muscle quicker. Aches and pains are more prevalent. We gain weight easier. Our physical activities get to be less.

These are all the more reasons why we need to change how we think about aging and what we do about our physical and mental being. It’s easier to lie down or make excuses why we don’t have time to get more physical activity. After about a few months of being sedentary, we feel more of the aches and pains which make us less active than we want to be. This can lead toward depression which makes us want to do less. It’s a cycle that limits our good quality of life.

It doesn’t have to be like this. It’s your choices. Is it too late to start? NO. When is the best time to start changing? Yesterday, but today will do. Yes, you can improve your health from where it’s at right now. Then you can have more vitality, energy, creativity, feel better about yourself and have fun doing it. The rest of your life will flourish, and you will be able to really say that this stage of your life is truly the best part. Here are a couple of tips to get you started:

1. Get real and identify where you are right now on a scale of one to ten – with one being the worse and ten the best.
Physical exercises 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Aches and pains 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Energy level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Vitality level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Creativity level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Happiness level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. If you’re not a 9 or 10 and want to be, what is one thing you can tell yourself to do and implement today?

I would like to help you create, implement and follow through on your plan. Feel free to contact me for more information or any question you may have. Contact Pete at peteaca@bellsouth.net or (770) 977-2232. The first two emails will receive a free ½ hour of coaching.

The Fall – A Time to Reassess

Another beautiful fall season is upon us. It is a great time to make the rest of the year better.

How can I do that? Take a good look at your business and shed the old unneeded systems and beliefs which are not serving you well. One way is to understand where you are now in terms of your business development and where you are heading. For most of us we rarely, if ever, take the time to get a good look at where we stand with our business development and marking systems.

Here are a few questions that will get you started to look at what you may need to focus on.  Can you answer “yes” to every one of them?

  1. I know exactly who my target clients/ customers are.
  2. I can name at least 3 publications they subscribe to.
  3. I can name 2 major challenges or wants my prospects have.
  4. I have just the right solution to help solve them.
  5. My prospect clearly understands what I do and how I can help them.
  6. I follow up with every prospect.
  7. I have created at least one marketing program to solve a specific set of problems or satisfy a desire.
  8. I have written a sales letter which explains each product or service in detail.
  9. I have a website that promotes my business.
  10. My business has increased noticeably in the last 12 months.

If you have more than three “No”’s it would be to your benefit to get your creative juices flowing and or contact me and take advanage of my free hour coaching. Have a prosperous and joyful fall.

The Power of Choice

We are making choices every second of the day, from a small simple thought, to major thoughts that turn into an action that will be either implemented or will cause you to procrastinate. You may be familiar with the phrase “Your thoughts create your reality.” Become familiar with this phrase if you aren’t already. If you are then I suggest you become even more familiar with it. This realization can take the rest of your life to own. The more you understand how thought creates your reality the more fulfilled your life can be. Deciding to do this can be the first choice you make in creating a better life and business.

Stop and listen to your thoughts throughout the day. Ask yourself, “Is this thought serving me well or not?” You have a choice to make if it’s not serving you well. You can choose to change the thought which will serve you better. These thoughts are like bricks set into fresh concrete. Eventually it will materialize, so be conscious of your thoughts.

You say, “That’s great, but what about this tough business choice I have to make every day?” For example: Should I hire another person or not? Should I leave early Tuesday to see my son’s baseball game? Is it time now to take this business to the next level?

Here are the ABCs to assist you in making choices.

A: Get clear on what your choices are and stretch your thinking. There are always a few more appropriate choices. Listen to your thoughts around them.
B: What outcome do you want?
C: Feel it and see it happen. Get your emotions into it. Cancel out any destructive thoughts.

Here are some powerful choices we tend to overlook that can make a big difference to your success and happiness:

  1. The choice to let go and move on. Think about this one.
  2. The choice to confront our beliefs. Maybe the belief was true at some point in your life and now it does not serve you.
  3. The choice to go for something bigger. Whenever you’re hung up on a choice. Ask yourself what could be bigger…put at least three more options on the table.
  4. The choice to support others in doing things their own way. How often do we get our shorts in a twist because someone else does things differently than we would? You may want to explore Myers-Briggs or the DISC to deepen your appreciation for the many legitimate ways in which people differ.
  5. The choice to accept fully what is. This choice is ALWAYS available when acceptance is enough on its own to reveal the success and peace you seek. It is also the first step before you decide to create something new.

Now you have another choice to use this to better you life and business or not.

When Your Routine Disappears… Will You?

Have you thought about retirement lately? Will it be from the corporate world, or will you exit from your own business? Will you retire completely or work part-time? Whatever you choose, your routine will, for the most part, disappear.

Once the thrill of leaving the company or business and sailing off into the virtual sunset of retirement is gone, some may face an identity crisis. It usually takes between 6 and 13 months for the dissatisfaction and/or depression to set in. Why? The VIP status may evaporate. The many roles you played may come to a halt. Your re-entry back into your family’s and friends’ lives can be challenging. The desire to spend every day involved with your hobbies, golf, tennis, or whatever, may not be satisfying.

However, this chapter of your life can be the best part of your life! How do you make the adjustment so that it can be the best part of your life? A plan with some understanding of the transition you will be faced with is a good start. We have an assessment that can identity and measure some of the success factors that can put you on the road to the best time of your life. These are some areas to be considered:

  1. Work Reorientation: The degree to which you have emotionally distanced yourself from taking your personal identity from work.
  2. Attitude Toward Retirement: Your perception of what your next life stage will be like for you. The new retirement as it will be practiced in the 21st century will bear very little resemblance to the old retirement generally practiced before the turn of the third millennium. New definition has emerged.
  3. Health Perception: Your subjective assessment of the current condition of your overall wellness. When thinking in terms of “retiring from” rather than “retiring to” this can be a “set up” for poor health.
  4. Financial Security: Have you planned sufficiently? Finances alone do not give life meaning, yet there is no underestimating the value of finances in every phase of life, especially the retirement phase.
  5. Family/Relationships Issues: The degree to which you derive satisfaction, intimacy, connectedness, love and a sense of well-being from your primary relationship and/or family life. Your ability to connect.

This stage of life calls for new attitudes, new roles, new responsibilities, new goals and achievements. We have assessment tools that measure 15 success factors for a great retirement.

Creating Your Business Plan

This could be the most important document that you could ever produce for your company. It could be anywhere from a one page document up to a fifty page document. There are no two business plans the same.

First question: What is your business plan for? Is it to raise money from a bank or venture capital? Each one requires different types of information. Is it the blueprint to build and measure the progress of the business? Is it the WHAT, WHY, HOW and WHEN of your strategic plan? One thing is for sure: It is the big picture of your vision for your business. If it is done correctly, it will keep you passionate and motivated throughout the year.

This topic is much too large to handle in this article. I have received numerous inquiries on this topic. Yes, I am able to assist and coach you through creating your business plan. What I will do here is list some essentials to a Business Plan.

  • WHAT ARE YOU BUILDING? What is your vision?
  • WHY DOES THIS BUSINESS EXIST? What is your mission?
  • WHAT IS YOUR OBJECTIVE? What is your objective in all areas of your business, sales, pretax profits, products and services? What is your objective with customers, employees, costs, etc.?
  • HOW WILL THIS BUSINESS BE BUILT? What will make it successful over time? What are your strategies? What are the trends? What are your competitive strengths and weaknesses? What opportunities do you see, etc.?
  • SALES & MARKETING – The Description and Positioning of Products/Services. How will your potential clients know you exist? What is your marketing strategy? What advertising do you intend to do? How will you get publicity? How will you sell your products/services? What promotion/incentives will you offer?
  • WHAT ARE YOUR FINANCIAL CONSIDERATIONS? What are your P&L projections? What are your cash flow projections – worst and best scenario?

The best to you in doing this project is that it will serve you and your company for a long time. The time you spend will be well worth it.