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  • Writer's pictureStepanka Kuralova

Uplevel Your Business with a Regular CEO Day for Next-Level Success

As a dedicated business owner or entrepreneur, you need to know the difference between working in your business and working on your business. It's a pivotal distinction —one that can help you unlock that next level success you are dreaming of, but also next level harmony and calmness.

Let's break it down: "working in your business" involves rolling up your sleeves and getting hands-on with the daily operations. This might encompass tasks like packing orders, teaching classes, responding to emails, tweaking your website, or even donning multiple hats, from HR manager to customer service representative. Undoubtedly, these tasks are crucial.

However, in the whirlwind of managing numerous responsibilities, it's all too easy to neglect the equally vital act of working on your business. The concept of working on your business has been championed by Michael Gerber, who delves into its significance in his well known book called The E-Myth Revisited.

But here's the twist: you can't always be in "working on your business" mode. Even if you have a team, you still need to roll up your sleeves sometimes to get things done.

So, how do you find the right balance? That's where CEO days come in.

Prefer podcasts over reading? No problem! I've covered this topic in a podcast episode as well. You can listen to it here on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.




CEO days don't have to eat up your entire day. They can be as short as a couple of hours or half a day, depending on your business size. I've been doing them since 2021, and they've been a game-changer for me. I made a simple checklist and knocked it out every Sunday morning. It usually takes me just a few hours because I've made it a regular thing.

I need you to remember this: you don't have to do everything I talk about in this article. Your CEO day can be customised to fit your needs. Start small, and as you get the hang of it, you can add more tasks. I began with those weekly money dates and then expanded.

What Can a CEO Day Do for You:

  • Keep you focused on your goals and values.

  • Help you spot problems early.

  • Assist with planning, following through, and delegating.

  • Improve your financial game.

  • Make you a better leader.

  • Get you in the right mindset for where you want to go.

  • Attract more success.

In simple terms, a CEO day lets you step back from the daily grind and focus on the big dreams. So, no more ado—let's dive into what you can do on your CEO day.

Before the CEO Day

Before you dive into your CEO day, there are some simple steps to set the stage:

  • Pick a Date: Decide when you want to have your CEO day. It can be a specific day of the week or month that works best for you.

  • Block Off the Time: Schedule it on your calendar and make sure you block off that time. Treat it like an important meeting because it is!

  • Choose Your Spot: Think about where you want to do this. It could be at home, your favourite café, a hotel, or a co-working space. The key is to pick a place where you can focus.

  • Gather Your Tools: Consider what you'll need. A journal, calendar, planner, and any spreadsheets or financial info you might require. The last thing you want is to spend your CEO day hunting for stuff.


On the Day

When your CEO day arrives, make it enjoyable and productive:

  • Treat Yourself: Start by doing something that makes you feel good. It could be having your favourite meal or a tasty drink.

  • Set the Mood: If you're at home, create a pleasant atmosphere. Light a candle, play your favourite tunes (your CEO playlist, perhaps), and make it a space where you feel inspired.

  • Cut Distractions: Turn off all those pesky notifications on your phone, and maybe even put it out of sight. The focus mode on your phone can be a lifesaver.

  • Be Prepared: Ensure everything you need is right there with you. Don't waste time searching for your essentials.


Prepare Your Nervous System

This step is a game-changer, so don't underestimate it. You might feel some resistance, and that's entirely normal. A part of you might want to escape or distract yourself. But here's the thing: getting your body involved and making it feel safe can transform these activities from dreaded chores into enjoyable rituals.

Let me share a personal experience. When I started my business, I dreaded those regular money dates. It took me a while to get everything organized in that department. I had to hire an accountant for tax returns, set up solid money spreadsheets to track income and expenses, and even get the right bank account in place. Why the resistance? Fear.

I worried that looking at my financial numbers would make me feel like a failure. And guess what? When fear kicks in, we tend to dodge uncomfortable feelings. We keep ourselves busy with anything but the task at hand. Invoices and bank statements get ignored, and we avoid peeking at our bank accounts. It all boils down to our emotions.

The thing is, whether we realise it or not, emotions drive our decisions. Even when we think we're being purely "rational," emotions often lurk beneath the surface. For instance, choosing the seemingly safer path over taking risks might be a decision rooted in the fear of losing what we have.

That's precisely why I developed my signature program, Emotional Alchemy (enrolments opening soon). It's all about untangling and rewiring our emotional associations with money, finances, and yes, those dreaded spreadsheets (remember those "I'm not good at maths" fears from school?).


So, how do you begin this transformative journey?


By regulating your nervous system:

  • Deep Breaths: Take long, deep breaths. Focus on extending your exhales. These kinds of breaths stimulate the diaphragm and, in turn, the vagus nerve.

  • Shake It Off: Put on a fun song and shake your body for at least 5 minutes. Embrace any kind of movement that feels right to you.

  • Meditation or Visualization: Spend a few minutes in meditation or visualise your goals. It's a mental reset that can work wonders.

  • Yoga and Stretching: Stretch your body or engage in a short yoga session. This physical activity helps release tension and prepares your mind for what's ahead.



Alternatively, engage in any other activity that helps you regulate your nervous system.

For me, it's all about breathwork and placing one hand on my heart and one on my belly. It's a grounding practice that helps me conquer the day with confidence.


01. General Review


Grab a notebook or open a document and jot down what's been going well and what's been a struggle in your business. This includes how you've been feeling, any feedback you've gotten, and those pesky technical glitches. It's also a chance to recognize if some tasks on your schedule feel like a real challenge. And don't forget to ask yourself, "What have I learned?" This is a quick but valuable reflection.

Team Check-In: If you have a team, take a moment to review how they're doing. Are they hitting their stride, or do they need some support? Recognize their accomplishments and identify areas where improvement might be needed.


02. Financial Review


This is how I personally tackle the financial review, but remember, you can adapt it to fit your own flow:

  • Keep the Financial Spreadsheet Updated: I start by keeping my financial spreadsheet up to date. It acts as my financial headquarters. I go through all my accounts, from PayPal to traditional bank accounts, and record everything meticulously in an Excel spreadsheet. This gives me an instant snapshot of my monthly financial status. Plus, my bookkeeper can access this valuable resource too.


  • Stay on Top of Invoices: While most of my expenses are automated, a few services still send me manual invoices. This is an excellent opportunity for me to ensure I haven't missed any.


  • Invoice Management: If you send out invoices to clients, it's the perfect time to make sure you're getting paid on time. Consider setting up automated invoices and reminders, especially through platforms like PayPal.


  • Budgeting and Savings: Now, this is where you can get a bit more strategic. You might have multiple accounts or follow a method like the Profit First system. Use this day to make transfers based on the predetermined percentages you've set up for your business. Alternatively, simply review your finances, pay yourself, and put some money aside. If this feels overwhelming, start with the basics and gradually explore more advanced methods like the Profit First approach.


  • Zoom Out and Assess: Take a step back and look at the bigger picture. Are you on track with your financial goals? Can you identify any patterns in where your money is coming from? What about your expenses—are they all in order, or are you still paying for services you haven't used in over a year? This is your chance to stay in control and feel confident about your financial situation.


Monthly Tasks: These regular monthly tasks are part of my routine:

  • I download my financial statements and send them to my bookkeeper.

  • Any new or non-repetitive expense receipts are uploaded to a shared folder I have with my bookkeeper.

  • To ensure my bookkeeper and accountant have easy access, I update permissions and connections to my accounts on Quickbooks.


If you're finding that this process stirs up a lot of emotions, remember one key thing: you are not defined by the financial numbers; they are just data. Your worth goes far beyond them.

Want to deepen your money date? Try one of the following:

  • Gratitude: Take a moment to genuinely feel gratitude for the money you currently have. Even if you're dealing with debt, acknowledge it with gratitude, as it has enabled you to achieve certain things in the past.


  • Abundance Crystal: If you resonate with crystals, bring along your favourite abundance crystal. It can serve as a positive and grounding presence during this process.


  • Goal Setting and Visualization: Set financial goals that resonate with you, and then visualise these numbers manifesting in your life. Visualisation can be a powerful tool for achieving your financial aspirations.


  • Managing Intense Emotions: If your emotions are running high during this process, consider these practices: EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), meditation, self-compassion

Remember, these activities are optional, and you can tailor them to fit your unique needs and preferences. The goal is to create a positive and supportive mindset around your financial journey.


03. Internal Projects Review


This is your dedicated time to shift your focus from client or customer work and direct it towards your internal projects. It's a chance to consider all the projects you're currently juggling and lay out your plans for the upcoming quarter , or even to take a step back and ponder the bigger picture.

These internal projects can span a wide spectrum. It might involve tasks like updating your website, introducing a new product to your lineup, recording a training session, planning and recording podcast episodes for the future, crafting engaging blog posts or emails for your audience, planning events etc.


So, how do you tackle these projects effectively? Here's what works for me:

  • Create Checklists: For each project on my plate, I maintain a handy checklist (on paper or digital, just avoid having one to-do list for all your business tasks = ineffective). Let me give you an example: I'm currently working on launching my signature program, Emotional Alchemy. Within this project, my checklist includes items like crafting sales page copy, ensuring the sales page goes live on time, setting up payment links, creating a course module on a platform like Teachable, planning promotional activities, recording podcast episodes, and much more. These checklists serve as a roadmap, helping me see what needs to be scheduled, accomplished, or delegated to ensure the launch goes off without a hitch.


  • Paper Planning: Personally, I prefer good old-fashioned paper planning. I use a monthly overview planner where I can pencil in dates and details. The flexibility of pencil and sticky notes allows me to make adjustments on the fly. I use this method for mapping out launch windows, scheduling events, workshops, classes I'm teaching, CEO days, and other significant milestones. However, for everyday appointments and bookings, I rely on my digital Google Calendar, which syncs seamlessly with platforms like Calendly. Pen and paper is for planning and having a good overview.


Metrics and Analytics: Depending on your preferences and business needs, you might also want to dive into various metrics and analytics. This could include assessing your social media engagement, monitoring email campaign performance, or tracking podcast download numbers. Analyzing these metrics can provide valuable insights and inform your future decisions and strategies.

Remember, this is my approach, and you're encouraged to tailor it to suit your unique style and requirements. The goal is to create a structured yet adaptable framework that empowers you to manage your internal projects efficiently and stay on top of your business game.



04. Organization


These tasks don't require daily attention, but it's a good practice to address them periodically, and some can even be delegated to streamline your workflow.

  • Google Drive Folders: While not a weekly necessity, creating Google Drive folders for your projects should be done regularly, perhaps once a month or as new projects arise.


  • Email Inbox Management: Clearing your email inbox can be a weekly ritual, but for a thorough cleanup, it's beneficial to do it at least monthly. You can also delegate this task to a virtual assistant who can filter and manage your emails efficiently.


  • Digital Cleanup: Periodically deleting and organizing files from your laptop's "Downloads" folder helps maintain a clutter-free digital workspace. Consider tackling this task every few months or delegate it to a tech-savvy team member.


  • Ring Binder Maintenance: I go through my trusty ring binder where I jot down content ideas, podcast episodes, braindumps, and various thoughts. Anything that has already been executed and no longer serves a purpose gets ripped out of the binder and, of course, recycled. This method keeps my binder fresh and relevant, with only active and ongoing projects and ideas remaining.


Optional: Personal CEO Moments + Self-Development


This segment is entirely optional and caters to those who want to extend their CEO day to encompass personal aspects of their life and self-development. It's a moment to consider your life outside of business and schedule important personal activities.





Here's how it might look:

  • Personal Planning: Use this time to look at your life holistically. Are there important personal events or activities you need to schedule? Maybe you have a weekend getaway planned and you need to make a shopping list. Note down these significant dates and commitments in your calendar. It ensures you don't overlook important personal responsibilities.


  • Personal To-Do List: Create a separate to-do list for personal tasks. It's a good practice to keep your business and personal to-dos separate. This clarity helps you manage your time more effectively and ensures you don't neglect personal responsibilities in the midst of business tasks.


Summary: Take Your Business to the Next Level with CEO Days


Growing your business isn't just about the daily grind; it's about setting aside time to focus on your business as a whole. But don't rush into it! If you're new to the concept of regular money dates and CEO days, start small. Don't try to do everything all at once. Begin with a few tasks, and make sure to keep your stress levels in check. Overdoing it can lead to feeling overwhelmed and may cause you to give up on the idea altogether.


If you're a business owner in need of support, whether it's for staying on track, getting through emotional hurdles, or changing your mindset to boost creativity and abundance, I've got your back. I work with business owners, creatives, and lightworkers to help them grow faster, find their purpose, and stay happy.

Check out my Accountability Coaching if you struggle with procrastination, lack of follow-through, or staying organized. We'll tackle those sneaky fears that hold you back.

Or, explore the Ultimate Hypnocoaching Package, an in-depth VIP journey with me that involves breaking through limitations, addressing subconscious and emotional blocks, conquering fears, and smashing through those barriers that are keeping you from reaching your business's next level. This is where the magic happens for many of my clients.


With Love,


Stepanka


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