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Jan 11, 2018

Today’s episode of Just the Tips is something special for the new year. It’s just Dean and I on this episode, recounting some of the most impactful takeaways we got from the past year in our businesses and our lives. And we look ahead to 2018, with tips on how to improve focus and performance so you can make this year your year. So if you’re looking to get to that next level in the next 12 months, we have some ideas for how to get you there.

Time is the greatest currency

After a brief discussion about how important time is, and freeing up your own time as an entrepreneur, Dean opened up about what has been happening in his business over 2017 and, it turns out, one of the biggest problems was time. He talked about how he missed deadlines and had difficulty getting things launched because he was too focused on doing things himself, and not growing the team. But he and I worked together to put project management systems in place that allowed him to add people to his team, open up a brand new office and really begin to make things work more efficiently to make time less of a stress on him and his business. And in terms of what surprised Dean this year in his business, you’ll have to listen to find out.

Keep it steady

When Dean asked me for my biggest takeaway from the last year, I took a different tack. I didn’t have the wild swings of changing or scaling up my business or opening a new office. For me, it was all about keeping steady and focused. I shared some insights from my drum teacher, that while you’re drumming, you’re better off keeping steady and in the groove, then rushing even the fun parts. And that’s the sort of lesson I needed to take into my business. Even when things are going well, and when I’m excited about something, it’s important to stay in the groove, not rush it, and keep everything together. And I’d love to hear your thoughts about how I translated that to concrete activities in my business.

Set goals for 2018

Dean and I talked about what we want to do in the coming year, and for me, the number one goal is getting my book out into the world. It’s something I’ve been working on for a long time, but last year it just didn’t feel like the right time. And that book, Autopilot Entrepreneur, is all about helping entrepreneurs set up blueprints and systems so they can identify what parts of their businesses aren’t working, and get them functioning properly. I’m really excited about the prospect of this book helping a lot of people. And Dean has a book on his agenda, too, but he’s being a little more cagey about it.

Keep it simple in the new year

Dean told me the same thing he’s told his own team, that 2018 will be the year of simplicity. As entrepreneurs we, of course, love starting new things and get excited about the prospect of new projects. But, as Dean says, that can often lead to us taking our eyes off the primary goal we’re trying to achieve. This actually jibes well with something I said earlier in the episode, about how meditation practice has really helped me focus and hone in on what I really need to be doing. And so for 2018, stay focused, keep it simple, and tell everyone you know about Just the Tips. It’s a clear recipe for success.

Outline of This Episode

  • [5:45] Dean’s top takeaways from the last year
  • [16:54] James’s top takeaways from the last year
  • [10:02] What changed everything for her business
  • [15:15] The spiritual side of money
  • [23:13] Be open to lessons from other parts of your life
  • [28:25] James’s goals for 2018
  • [35:20] What’s happening on the podcast in 2018
  • [39:15] Dean’s one big tip

Resources & People Mentioned

Music for “Just The Tips” is titled, “Happy Happy Game Show” by Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License

Connect With James and Dean

James P. Friel:

Dean Holland:

Digital Business Entrepreneurs: