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You, Your team and time management – how to achieve more every day.

Not getting as much done as you would like?
Please don’t read another book.
Please don’t write another list.

In my experience and I’ve helped individuals, mums, CEO’s, teams of 10 and teams of 200+ to achieve more and even apps aren’t enough!

You need to go back to the beginning.

As a coach people mock me for some of the questions I ask thinking they are wishy washy, however having achieved awesome results with my clients (they do most of the work, I’m just the catalyst) these woo woo questions are the ones with the power, so for starters;

What do we stand for?
What do I want?
Why do I want it?
What will this give me?
What are my values?
How do I want to impact on the world?
What do I fear?
Can I confidently say No?

What will my actions lead to?
What are my goals?
Where will they take me?
What stays on the to do list that I never get around to?
How does that make me feel?
What to I assume will happen?

Ditch or deal with everything on your to do list.
Money making first.

And if you really want to achieve more, I share at The BWN and speaking engagements and with clients my 10 day week.

So damn powerful and makes even me achieve more. (I can’t share it here because it’s too visual to work).

And lastly if you have more than 5 things on your list of to do today, you are setting yourself up for long term failure.

There’s a ton of other things but time management and achieving big things is not rocket science. It is about understanding the power of who you are (not an author, guru or expert) and utilising that power, stepping up to the stuff that you fear and having the accountability and focus to get on with it.

I love coaching because it’s so powerful. And the silly little thoughts that crossed over your mind just now, they could hold the key to maximise the use of every hour from this moment on!
Cool right?

There’s more that I teach and share – communication rules and laws, boundaries, respect, open door policy and when not to. Company policy, mission and vision. So much, but this should get you and your team achieving more.

Remember if you want to achieve more you have to create space to and that means making time – time management coaching enables you and your team to do this.

  • March 4, 2020

Do or do not there is no try – A quick way to a new level of success.

That is a sentence that I’ve held dearly for so many years.

It helps you when you want to achieve.

It helps you when you face adversity.

It can even help you when you are rushed to A and E and are scared to death you are dying.

Whatever your life looks like or what you want it to look like this article could change your actions by the time you finish reading it, ready?

For those that aren’t into Star wars that phrase is said by tiny ancient Yoda (who looks like he couldn’t take on a toddler and beat them in a battle, although not sure who would want to do that!) it is as his prodigy is attempting to get his spaceship (bear with me non scifi lovers) out of the bog.

Luke the young prodigy proclaims, “I don’t believe it!” As tiny Yoda effortlessly lifts the ship not just free of the bog vines and mud but with just the gentle lifting of his hand lands it gracefully next him. Yoda turns to Luke and pretty much says “And that my dear boy is why you couldn’t do it.”

“Do or do not there is no try.”

Okay so what’s that got to do with your life and happiness?

Meet Sarah (Name changed because all clients are always confidential unless they go around shouting about working with me) Sarah had been working with me for a couple of months and was getting used to the fact that you can’t hide from yourself in our sessions. She flippantly said “Well I will give that go. I promise”

Give that a go?” I asked, “What do you think your chances are of success I asked?” and I added “What are you actually saying in your head about this plan of action?”

The deep sigh and “Wow I hate you look” (it’s good to get that look from your client because it means you’ve found what is really standing in the way of what they want. And it’s always handled with love and respect. Usually leading to clients coaching themselves in the middle of our sessions!) led to them saying “Well I suppose if I’m honest, it’s a great plan, it’s what I really want, but I’m not convinced that I can actually do it.”

Bingo!

Sarah was going to tackle her coaching plan of action with a “I will give it a go” attitude. When we analysed that viewpoint, she could see that;

  • She was moving the responsibility for success from her to “out there”. No responsibility, no accountability, not her fault, right?
  • She feared that she lacked skills and the confidence to do the actions we had set.
  • She held on to an outdated and quite frankly untrue idea that she would fail.

The quickest way to fix this (as Sarah and I did) was to;

  1. Build her internal confidence – not the confidence you get from the outside world when things are going right but from knowing who you are and privately being proud of that.
  2. Looking for the evidence. We so often listen to the wrong voices in our head that second guess us. By looking for proof Sarah laughing with mandie holgate business and life coachcould see that she had never failed at any of the actions we had outlined, I had jested with her “So for the first time ever in your life you are going to phone that person and be rude, swear and disrespect them giving them the “Oi you, give us your money” attitude are you?” This was so far removed from the wonderfully professional businesswoman that she is that she couldn’t but laugh. When we laugh, we are generally starting to notice that what we are scared to see.

If she had gone with the I’ll give it go (try) attitude her results would not have been as epic as they were.

On the opposite side of this, I also work with a lot of business owners and managers who have long term health issues. It is very hard to be a dedicated passionate hard worker and find you have a body that won’t sustain all you want to get done that week. Learning that lesson is not easy, and it tends to lead to a lot of stress as we try to let no one down and achieve everything for everyone. For myself I have learnt that I will do or do not, not try.

A client who had recently been given a diagnosis of a long-term condition that could potentially greatly damage their business and their earning potential came to me for this reason. Attempting to be the before illness person was adding so much stress because they physically with all the will in the world could not get everything done. No amount of late-night working worked. If anything, it just exasperated their symptoms. Would they have to quit their business and give up?

No, through our time together (I only worked with that client 4 times) they learnt that it was their decision to decide what they spent their time.

It is not easy to say No to people (Heck there’s a whole chapter on it in my book Fight the fear because it can be so detrimental to our success.) So, learning what to allow into their life and what would be dropped was difficult but had a massively positive impact.

If you find yourself trying to please everyone and get everything done;

  • Have crystal clear goals on what you want and need to do. (Don’t let other people’s definition of importance get dragged in here. It’s confidential to you, so they won’t know!)
  • Learn how to say No. For me and many clients start small. Don’t meet for coffee that takes you out of the office for 2.5 hours (as much fun as that is to meet up) organise a conference call. You could save 1.5 hours! That would be respectful to your needs too.
  • Be honest. We seem to think we are some kind of superhuman robot race. We aren’t. As such trying to do everything is a quick way to overwhelm, stress, burn out, long hours, uncompleted tasks, missed opportunities and a lot of stress related illnesses. (I’ve a proven track record of helping people work less hours and achieve a lot more). Communication is critical. Say things like “That sounds great, however I’ve got to get X done by Friday, so could we have a chat on the phone after the 23rd please?” or “I’ve got a long term health condition that has never impacted on my ability to deliver to my clients however it does mean I don’t check my phone after 6pm. If there is an emergency, please phone xxx” That one is one I used. I was really scared that with my Lupus diagnosis I would lose clients, if anything my honesty led to an increase in clients. What better coach to work with than someone who watched box sets in the middle of the day, only worked part time and injected herself with chemo once a week and still won multiple awards, was asked to write a book by the UK’s leading non fiction publishers and clients include Councils, NHS, Virgin Care and WHSmith’s!

Thankfully the do or do not attitude has had far reaching results for myself my clients and their teams.

It led to me finding a solution to my 8 years of illness last May and now I’m well. Working full time and very grateful for my health. And thanks to the try or try not method, you can imagine how epic my time management and success rate has become?

It leads us finally to faith. Try or try not says. I have faith in what I do. I have no faith in what I can achieve. I have no faith in who I am.

So, ask yourself this. Do you have faith in what you will do? Who you are? And what you can achieve?

Get in touch anytime.

I love the phone ringing 01206 381482. Or if that feels to scary to phone in the first instant mandie@mandieholgate.co.uk I’m here to help.

  • January 11, 2020

Don’t Catch The Shiny Thing Syndrome (The STS)

Of all the things that are big obstacles to success. I think the one that is the most frustrating for clients (rather than scary or stressful) is when The Shiny Thing Syndrome hits.
Don’t know The Shiny Thing Syndrome?

The STS (Shiny Thing Syndrome) is when you are working towards your goal and then a new idea, new opportunity, or a new “expert” comes along and you think “Oooo this could work faster, easier, with less work, money, time, effort.” Basically, the idea takes weight in your mind that the course of action you are taking is not going to get you to your dream destination and that you need to look somewhere else to get the results you want. And before you know it you’ve signed up to a new course, a new way of thinking, the next “guru” or book that has all the answers. And guess what?

3 to 6 months later you are starting to lose momentum with what this course of action required and are already looking around thinking things like;

  • “That looks like it could work.”
  • “They seem to have it sussed, I wonder what they did to succeed and if I should copy them?”
  • “I really don’t know if this is the right product/service/person to be going for.”
  • “I don’t think I’m getting the results I want because I’m not going for the right things, I should try something else.”
  • “They seem to be getting there faster than me, I wonder what their secret to success is?”

Whatever your train of thought it will be a pattern of thinking that takes you away from your action and focus and in a new direction. Hence the “oooo shiny thing syndrome” because you are easily getting distracted to move in a new direction and not stick with what you are doing.

Why is this such an obstacle to success? Because if you keep moving in new directions all of the time you can end up going around in circles, never getting anywhere!

So the next time The STS hits what can you do about it?;

  1. ValuesMandie Holgate values exercise

One of the reasons we flit from one idea, goal, target, guru to another is because we lose sight of what matters to us. We are so keen to learn and strive for greatness that we forget to remember our brain has not read the memo and doesn’t know you are supposed to be achieving according to someone else’s definition of success. As such before you choose even one action you need to know what matters to you most. Because when you know what your driving forces are in life then you keep moving towards them.

ACTION; think about something right now that you care passionately about. Maybe it’s your partner, your dog, your kids, animal welfare, and end to starvation, a charity or a cause. Now imagine someone suggested you dump that and go for the Anti Oxygen Society as the thing you care most about. Crazy notion right?

Now bring it back and think about that thing you care about with all of your heart and mind, on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being the most powerful);

  • How passionate do you feel about the actions and goals you have in your life?
  • Do they give you the same rush of passion, love, determination and desire to support it as the thing you care passionately about?

If not then you are not living to your core values. In chapter 1 of my book Fight the fear, there’s an exercise that will take you between 20 minutes and 1 hour, go back and do that now. And if you have already done this exercise, do it again! (Your core values could have altered or you haven’t appreciated their value to your success.) You can not achieve what your heart does not truly desire.

  1. Clear GoalsClear Goals Mandie Holgate Aug

It’s all well and good to create goals, however, are they so crystal clear that you can feel like they already exist?

From the age of 8, I wanted to be a published author, and despite serious illness and only working part time I knew with every fibre of my being it was going to happen. Now, this is not just magic thinking, or the power of the secret. Yes, it started with a goal I would do anything to achieve, however it then had the right actions and beliefs to ensure I worked tirelessly and without fault to that goal.

ACTION; We will look at your actions in more detail in top tip 4 and top tip 6, however for now ask yourself;

  • Is my goal in line with my values?
  • Have I laid out clear actions to achieve it?
  • Do I understand what it will feel like to achieve this?
  • Do I appreciate what I will NOT look at to get to this result?
  • What do I need to do to understand how to reach my goal?
  1. IgnoreIgnore Mandie Holgate fight the fear

This one is where you really only notice you’ve slipped from positive action to negative action when it’s too late because it doesn’t feel like you are doing anything wrong. If anything it can feel like you are taking control and stepping it up a gear. However one of the quickest ways to Shiny Thing Syndrome is to listen to every new idea that comes along. As much as there are tonnes of great books out there, with the best will in the world you can only physically read one word at a time, so taking on 10 books with 10 lots of actions, ideas and opinions is not going to work.

One thing at a time. And that means ignoring the rest. It doesn’t mean forever, however it does mean that you don’t keep looking over your shoulder for a faster, easier, quicker way to get where you want to get.

ACTION; So ignore other experts, for now, ignore other ideas, ignore new ways and most importantly at this stage ignore the competition. They are on their path and you are on yours. And as we’ve already established if you keep changing direction you end up going in circles, and like wise if you keep jumping on other people’s paths you get other people’s destinations!

You wouldn’t arrive at the airport and say “I will go where he is going” oblivious to the destination of the man in front of you in the queue, so why do it with your success? You are on your path, heading in your direction. By ignoring everyone else for a while you can concentrate on getting there. Remember with success there has to come failure. And you can’t know if you are on the right path until you have actually travelled on it. Changing lanes gives you no information to enable you to appreciate what really works for you.

  1. FocusFocus MH August article Mandie Holgate fight the fear

You have probably heard from a lot of experts that you need to be focused right? And another reason the STS hits is because you start to question if this is the right way to go;

  • “Am I concentrating on the right things?”
  • “Should I try this instead?” etc, etc.

As we looked at in Top Tip 3 you need to explore one path at a time. Experience the failure so that you can understand;

  • “What worked?”
  • “What do I need to improve?”
  • “What have I learnt from this?”

ACTION; When you remember that staying focused on the plan of action you have decided on you can challenge yourself with questions like;

  • “If I don’t keep going with the actions I laid out, what am I agreeing to?”
  • “If I change focus now what am I agreeing to?”
  • Am I scared to keep going on procrastinating about doing this?

And you are likely to discover you are agreeing to confusion, procrastination and worry that you are doing the wrong thing or that it is not going to work. The only way you can know if it is going to work is by actually sticking with it. (And there is more advice about that in top tip 6)

  1. One size actually fits all (sometimes!)Mandie Holgate blog Aug

A quick search on Google showed me that there are literally hundreds of diets that I could use. And yet still new ones are invented, why? Ultimately our bodies still have the same components in it that they had in them 50 years ago so why the new diet trends? Because we don’t want to do what we need to do.

The fact is that actually to a degree one size does fit all when it comes to weight loss – as one friend put it (a bit crudely!)“You’ve got to move more, eat less and go to the loo more” That’s it. No rocket science. And yet if to lose weight it just takes 13 words why is the diet industry worth over $60 billion dollars! It reinforces that one size can fit all.

ACTION; Stop doing new stuff and stick with what needs to be done. It is highly likely you’ve heard the saying that is reported to have come from Einstein (but just as likely to be Franklin, Twain or Rita Mae Brown!) “The definition of insanity is to do the same thing and expect different results.” And yet we’ve become so obsessed with the idea of doing new things that we forget to keep going. Remember 1 more book, 1 more expert, 1 new opportunity is all distracting you. Therefore become aware of your desire to go for something new all of the time;

When does it happen?

Is it within weeks of getting started with a goal?”

“Is it when things get tough, scary or out of your comfort zone?”

Instead of moving in a new direction, tackle the underlining cause of distraction and redirection.

  1. AccountableAccountably coach mandie holgate

When The STS hits you how will you stay accountable? It is all too easy to turn to your new idea, guru, book and say “this last idea didn’t get me to where I wanted to go, you will won’t you!”

ACTION; Before you move on again, stop and ask yourself (honestly) if you are taking responsibility and ownership;

  • Have you really done all that you said you would?
  • Have you really challenged your mindset and actions to get to where you want to go?
  • If not who and what could help you?

Remember your environment can impact on your actions and The STS as much as your attitude and belief, thus;

  • Look around you, are you with the right people?
  • Do they support you, give you faith and belief that you can achieve?
  • Or are they constantly throwing new information at you, when you’ve not finished processing the last lot?

Mastermind groups, networking groups, friends, relatives, colleagues, can all come under these categories; ie they are either going to help you stay focused and accountable for the end result or they are going to distract you with ideas like;

  • “Well it was a lot to ask of yourself”
  • “I didn’t think you really wanted this”
  • “We still love you even if you don’t achieve your goal”
  • “It’s not for everyone.”

Remember other people are on their own agenda, and because they love and care about you (or want the opportunity themselves!) they may wish you to stop going for your goals and sometimes that desire is subconscious so they don’t’ even know they are doing this to you!

Do you remember as a child when things got tough, you would turn to your parents and either cry, whinge, or share your fears that you’d never be able to do it?

And what did your parents do? They reassured you, they showed you they believed in you and they encouraged you to keep going. None of us get up and walk for the first time without a few slips. And your parents had no way of knowing completely that you could do it. It was their job to encourage, motivate and support so you kept believing in yourself. Just think of it like riding a bike, how tough did that feel? Have you ever taught a child to ride a bike? It can be really tough to work out what to say or do so you just keep encouraging and supporting, who is doing that for you now?

  1. Just do it.Mandie Holgate coach just do it

Ultimately The STS is about negative emotions hitting you and making you question and second guess your choice of action and goal. And as scary as it can be to step out of your comfort zone or to keep going when you don’t feel like you are getting somewhere you have to “just do it”. There’s a reason why Nike is still using that tagline, because ultimately when it comes to succeeding that is what your success needs.

No one gets on the track and runs their personal best the first time. Formula 1 racing drivers don’t start in F1 Cars, they start in go carts!

ACTION: Just do it! I appreciate that you might be thinking “That is easier said than done Mandie!” okay so ask yourself;

  • “For what reason is that easier said than done?”
  • “What fear is underlining your lack of action and just getting on with it?

Fight that fear, because ultimately I believe in you, I’ve seen people like you take responsibility, ownership, set the goals, live to their core values, adjust their beliefs and achieve big, so what evidence are you relying on to the contrary? And if you need new people in your team to ensure you get there, feel free to give me a call anytime.

  • July 24, 2017

Stop Being A Catherine Wheel – Its Wrecking Your Focus

So in honour of Fireworks night (I do like a little bit of seasonal chatter and marketing don’t you?)

I’ve been working with a lot of clients recently who know what they should be doing but aren’t getting down to it. And then there are those very busy business women who have so many opportunities and so many ideas not a lot seems to happen but boy are they busy!

So is that like a Catherine Wheel.

Well think of your poor garden fence or garage door tomorrow night when you nail your Catherine Wheel to it. You are highly likely to end up with a brown burn mark where the Catherine Wheel spun around and around making a lovely pattern. But hang on a minute. If that Catherine Wheel was to be pointed in one direction it is highly likely it would be able to burn a whole right through your fence panel!

All that power focused and targeted in one direction and the results is very different. And that fabulous sparkly people  is what I see so often with many clients.

There are so many ways in which you could be growing your business and getting the success you want how do you work out where to focus your attention? How do you know the direction you have chosen is the right one?

So to stop you being a Catherine Wheel here are my cracking ideas to Be A Fired Up Focused Worker!

  1. Stand back from the big picture. you wouldn’t drive to the other end of the country without a plan, so plan now. What are you aiming to achieve? What is the end goal? How many more clients or customers? How much more money? How much more free time? Knowing the big picture is critically important – but don’t get bogged down in how you will achieve it. Just know what you want!
  2. Outline as many ideas as possible to lead you to your desired goal. Again don’t worry about time constraints or financial implications. Concentrate on the what if’s I could do anything.
  3. Now using that wish list of ideas look at the list with a critical eye and ask yourself what here do I know works? What could I replicate? Ideally, you will come up with a plan that ensures you are working in little steps to your goal, but that your eye is still on the big idea that you know could really rocket your business. Many of my clients call it putting it on the back burner. This is great because it allows the idea to bubble away while you stay focused on the big picture on what needs to happen now. But because that idea is there it ensures your subconscious is starting to process the why? the what’s? and the how to?s for you.
  4. Get realistic. If you have 2 jobs, a family, a pet, holiday plans, health problems, responsibilities, or a desire to not work 24 hours a day, factor in your life. Goals are achievable and remain on target when life is not something you forget to prioritise too. So with your list of ideas and your focussed approach what do you need to take into account? Have you promised someone you will be there for them? When you start to neglect other areas of your life it can cause a high level of stress and guilt and negativity can build up. And trust me they are not good for achieving your goals and lasting business success.
  5. Now take action. And remember you are not a Catherine Wheel! As new ideas and opportunities come to you (and they will, afterall you are gorgeously amazing!) you can ask yourself this critical question. Does this fit into my current goals for my business? If not have the confidence to say “No” Its a powerful word and it does not mean No forever. Just I’m sorry that does not fit in with my current business growth structure. People really admire a person with a clearly defined goal that they are going for. And it other people know your business goals, they can help you achieve them faster too!

I hope this helps you appreciate the damage it has been having on you as you can end up flittering from one thing to another, doing a little bit here, some marketing there, a little bit of networking, then a bit of this and bit of that.

Get focused and target your success – you sparkler you!

  • November 4, 2013