The Secret to Capitalizing on September – The Bonus Month.
Summer’s over. The routine is back in full swing, but Q4 hasn’t begun yet.
September is your bonus month!
Feeling that drop in temperature and changes in the daylight patterns and shadows takes me right back to the end of summer as a kid. Leaving the mountains of Pennsylvania and heading back to Long Island for the new school year had the painful stab of the end of summer fun, as well as a flutter of anxious excitement of something new.
Here’s the secret to capitalizing on this gift of September. Simply ask yourself this question: “How do I want to feel on December 31st?” Don’t misunderstand, this isn’t about rushing through the next 4 months, it’s about slowing down and using them – especially the September Bonus Month – to reach your goals of 2016.
Here are three ideas for how to use your September Bonus month:
GIVE: We are all so blessed. Too often the tendency is to wait until Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Tax Time to make charitable commitments. Do it now! Give extra during your bonus month, or plan now how much you will give between now and the end of the year and start contributing. The value is as much for the giver as the recipient, and by starting now you will be less likely to cut back because of the end-of-year expenses – or the number looks too big in a single lump.
And, you don’t want to be “that guy” who only gives at holiday time.
GROW: Whether personally or professionally, use September to focus on you, your relationships, and your business. Don’t let the sadness of summer being over or the fears of the Q4 crunch whittle away these amazing four weeks! Kick off a healthy living effort now. Look at those hard realities about your career and job satisfaction. Mend relationships before the holidays so you can enjoy those times more fully. Look at your business and ask yourself how you want to feel about it on December 31st, and decide what steps you can take now.
On New Years’ Eve do you want to be anticipating the New Year with enthusiasm and excitement or fear and frustration?
ENJOY: We spend too much time looking at “what’s wrong rather than what’s right”, and therefore stress out and chew up our days and weeks without even being aware of it. Use this month to shift your energy and get ready for the inevitable craziness that lies ahead. More people say Fall is their favorite season than any other, so enjoy! Embrace the smells and tastes of Fall (not everything has to be pumpkin spice!). Take the time for family and for yourself. Reflect, play, read, take a class, and enthusiastically jump all over those focused personal or business goals.
You can enjoy this month by pushing hard on those areas of your life you know will make you feel great on December 31st!
We all want these good things to happen, but it’s really hard to do it alone. Engage in activities that you might not usually choose in order to mix it up and grow. Find those around you who can help you create a plan for your Bonus September, hold you accountable to make it happen – and celebrate it with you!
Leave your comments below on how you will take advantage of your Bonus Month!