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Four Easy Habits That Boost Your Consulting Revenue

You know that adopting a few, personal, morning habits can dramatically improve your life. Fastening your seat belt on the way to work halves your risk of serious injury in a crash. A thirty-minute aerobic workout at the start of the day lowers cholesterol and staves off obesity-related ailments. Brushing your teeth triples the likelihood that anyone you engage in conversation won’t wrinkle their nose and make a quick excuse to scurry off.

Similarly, improving your morning routine will yield major dividends for your business.

Below are four, start-the-day-habits to enhance your consulting practice:

  1. Exercise – This one’s a “cheat” because the same habit that improves your personal life also enhances your business performance. The research is clear: aerobic activity increases your mental acuity in the short term and long term. Morning exercise energizes you and heightens your intelligence. And since we’re in the smarts business, incorporating this brain-boosting habit is a must. hockey-at-40
  2. Get Your Head Straight – If you’re down in the dumps, discouraged, devoid of passion or unconvinced that the day ahead will leave your business better off than yesterday, you’re unlikely to make much progress. Exemplars of success from Benjamin Franklin to Steve Jobs started their days with a mindset check-up. Franklin asked each morning, “What good shall I do today?” and Jobs’ self-query was, “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?”* Develop a morning, mental audit that works for you and take the opportunity to adjust your attitude right away if it’s askew.darwin-in-mirror
  3. Write – Your ability to generate awareness and capture clients is directly related to your verbal acumen. The two best ways to sharpen your communication skills are platform speaking and writing. Writing forces you to translate fuzzy into concrete, compelling language that is easily grasped by others.
    You can outsource copywriting, article writing, book writing and skywriting; however, I strongly recommend you, yourself, write at least 15-minutes every day. Use the time to pen a blog, an article, a white paper, a book, a speech, a pithy reply to this blog or some other communication.
  4. Tackle Your #1 Priority – As Mark Twain sagely advised, get big work done early. Identify your top priority the evening before and you’ll know exactly what to jump on when the day commences. Get that task done before you look at email or anything else. Then, no matter where you focus your remaining work hours, you’ll know you had a successful day and moved your business forward.

What do you think? Can you incorporate these four habits into your daily routine?


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6 Comments
  1. LL2
    November 12, 2014 at 8:25 am Reply

    These recommendations are spot-on, Daviod. I would add a few more as well:

    1.) Use positive affirmations to focus yourself and get rid of self-defeating attitudes and behaviors. The power of the human mind, coupled with belief in positive natural selection, will accomplish amazing results – immediately!

    2.) Learn to accept and love yourself. It is too easy to become self-critical and humiliated by our own impossible perfectionistic myths about our own shortcomings. Remember, we are all only human and we respond best to encouragement, patience and positive corrections. PERSISTENCE in this practice is required, of course.

    3.) Be willing to help others achieve success. The power of teams not only propels them to success but will provide you with a network of friends, mentors and supporters that increases our prospects exponentially.

    Hope someone finds these helpful.

    All the best!

    • davidafields
      November 12, 2014 at 11:28 am Reply

      Great additions! Your message is right on: be kind to yourself and others. Totally agree. Thanks for posting.

  2. Jane
    November 12, 2014 at 11:22 am Reply

    These are four great ideas. Although once I get started writing I do have a hard time stopping at 15 minutes. The juices are flowing because of the energy from the exercise. I find having a ‘mindset lifter’ (like “What good am i going to do today?”) is essential to keep me moving forward and finding joy in the process. Otherwise I find it is far too easy to get sidetracked by negatives and disappointments. I’d rather learn from them, put them aside, and move forward positively.

    One idea I’ll add to complement point #4 identifying your main priority the night before–incorporate a few minutes of meditation or breathe work into your pre-bed routine. Just 15 minutes of focused breathing relaxes my body and clears my head of muddle (since I already captured my priority for tomorrow). I sleep so much better and deeper when I do this than when I don’t. And I wake up refreshed and ready to work out physically and mentally.

    • davidafields
      November 12, 2014 at 11:32 am Reply

      Jane, you’re right that it can be tough to stop writing at 15 minutes… so don’t stop! As long as you have SOME cutoff point so that you’ll get to your #1 priority, you’re good. I’d classify a day on which you’ve written outstanding content for a couple of hours and accomplished another major goal as highly productive. Love the point on 15 minutes of focused breathing.

  3. Anatoli Naoumov
    July 22, 2016 at 9:53 am Reply

    Good points. Thank you. Except Jobs’.

    I do not see a direct business value in the Jobs’ point. Perhaps he embraced this concept while approaching the finish line of his life. I think that Living today as the Last Day has not continuity built into it, while continuity is life itself. If today were my last day I certainly would not spend it prospecting clients or practicing my writing skills or even reading your blog. On the other hand, consciously allocating a day a year or an hour a week for the “Last Day” activities has an utmost importance for happiness and overall well-being. Such practice brings perspective into daily life.

    How is this for the writing exercise? 🙂

    • David A. Fields
      July 27, 2016 at 5:41 pm Reply

      Good writing exercise, Anatoli. Write more! I agree with you that last-day-of-life questions and even last-year-of-life inquiries don’t balance short-, mid-, and long-term priorities well enough for my liking. However, we all do better if we religiously check in on our mindsets. What question we use for that daily check will vary from person to person. Not asking anything, though, robs you of the opportunity to notice when you’re going astray and to get yourself back on track.

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