Looking back, looking forward, budgeting, planning for the future, setting goals, learning from our mistakes–okay, all of this is good advice for the small, home business owner and it all has a time and place. But, at some point, we just have to settle ourselves down and stay current. We have to find a way to keep an eye on the future all the while keeping ourselves grounded in the present.
The truth is that what we do today is the foundation for reaching out goals tomorrow. In business, planning IS important. Establishing a budget and taking the steps to grow a business takes a good balance between looking forward and staying in the present. My advice is to spend some time periodically establishing and evaluating goals, setting out a guideline for your business in terms of a long-term plan and goals–and then letting it go in order to stay focused on what needs to be done today. I am one of those people who can get so overwhelmed with thinking about things that are out of my immediate control that I waste an entire day (or more) by not taking care of what is right in front of my face.
The thing is, if we get too focused on the future, or not able to let go of mistakes or problems of the past, we might miss opportunities that pop up in the day-to-day. So, while the future is important, and the past has validity–the present day is the only one we really have and can really influence when it comes to our business efforts. Pay attention to the customers and clients you need to attend to today, the sales that can be made today, the work that can be accomplished this hour or this day–and over time, your business growth will take care of itself.
Also: Expect Business Cycles