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How I’m Aiming To Get 2023 off To a Flyer

2022 flew by. I didn’t want 2023 to come around so quickly. Because I didn’t achieve anywhere near what I wanted to in 2022.

But that’s OK, I’m not beating myself up about it.

After reviewing what happened last year, I found that I tried to do too much. Which is a trait of mine.

What I found was I used certain things as an excuse. Things like reading, going for a walk. Or putting a new feature into a product. These weren’t needed, they were a procrastination tool, a crutch.

So I’ve been thinking about how I want to attack 2023.

This blog post will list what I’m doing this year to try and achieve my goals.

Reviewing 2022

Before Christmas of 2022, I reread a post I wrote at the start of 2022 called “How I’m Trying To Get 2022 off To a Flyer“.

It was a hard read.

Because looking at some of the goals that I’d set out to do by “Q1” of 2022. They either didn’t get done till the end of the year or are still outstanding.

I could have started beating myself up, instead, I looked at it as “the way”.

If something is still outstanding, that’s the difficult task, the one you’re putting off.

So I knew what I had to do first, these difficult jobs.

Get Your House In Order

I started thinking about 2023 in October/November of 2022.

As I’ve said, I used “things I need to do” as a procrastination tool.

So during the last 6-8 weeks of 2022, I focused all my attention on getting shit done. All those jobs that needed doing, that I used as an excuse, I got done. Getting my massive to-do list down to only 24 tasks.

14 of them are programming jobs that don’t need to be done yet.

Which leaves a massive 10 things to do.

I don’t need to do some of these tasks straight away. What is interesting is that they are all marketing or content related. The sorts of jobs that I’ve put off in the past.

Ripping Up The Goals You Set

“If you’ve done what you’ve always done, you will get what you’ve always got”.

I don’t know where I saw that quote, but it stuck with me for years.

I’m not saying don’t set any goals, I still have mine written down. But what I’ve done for years is focus on the goals. When in fact I’ve overlooked what daily tasks should I be focusing on to reach those goals.

It comes back to me using “work” as an excuse.

That the difficult tasks that I don’t want to do, that I put off, are the ones I should be doing.

What To Focus On In 2023 Instead

It’s all well and good to say forget about your goals.

The reason I do what I do is that I have goals, and I want my life to be a certain way.

However, my problem is that it’s all been “action faking”. It could be reading another book on marketing. Or going for another walk and jotting down ideas, it’s a way to avoid doing the hard, difficult work.

To counteract all this, I’ve come up with a “plan of attack”.

Here is my new 3-step plan to starting working towards my goals

  1. Focus on income-producing activities
  2. Start engaging on social media daily to build an audience
  3. Create content on daily basis and distribute using a “recycling” checklist

Points 2 and 3 are straightforward in theory, and difficult in practice, but you can learn these skills.

The first point, “focus on income-producing tasks” is more difficult.

I’ve had a goal for years, to build an online business(es) that puts £100,000 a year into my pocket. Now, I’m far from achieving that goal as I write this post. And you don’t always know, what you don’t know.

So I’m going to go back to a quote that I’ve already said in this post.

“If you’ve done what you’ve always done, you will get what you’ve always got”.

Getting to a £100,000 a year business isn’t going to happen as if by magic. Again learning to make money is another skill you or I can develop. However, it takes more time for some of us to learn and pick up.

Focus

The key word from the first step of the plan is ‘focus’.

I’ve never focused enough time, energy, discipline and commitment to income-producing tasks.

What I’ve done in the past is read a book on marketing. Try to put in place what I’ve learned, but never commit to the process. Then given up when things haven’t gone as I’d dreamed.

Is Consistency The Key?

If you follow me on social media, you may have noticed I like to compare fitness and business a lot.

I’ve even called myself out that I’m not consistent with my efforts.

Yet, it’s easier said than done. I’m able to stick to a fitness plan and work out 3, 4 even 5 times a week. But when it comes to doing the same things every day to move forward with a project. I seem to last only 30 days or so.

Or if I do commit to it and seem to be able to do something for longer. I’m not learning from it and flatline, even going backwards for some reason.

So during December 2022, I put together a “framework”, well more of a habit tracker to help me stay consistent.

Keeping Consistent In Practice

Being consistent is easier said than done.

Again, I started by reviewing what daily and weekly activities I was doing last year, as well as what things I have put off.

This has helped me structure what I’m going to do in 2023. I’ve always wanted to blog more, it’s my favourite medium (along with podcasts). However, last year I hardly did any blogging and kept putting off writing.

So going back to what I said earlier, if it’s something you keep putting off, that’s what you need to focus on.

From these tasks I put off, I’ve created a structure of tasks to do each week, which will get done on a Sunday or Monday.

Here’s what my weekly tasks look like:

Weekly ‘Jobs’

  1. Create 5-10 content ideas
  2. Find and create 5-10 post templates
  3. Schedule posts for the week for the Facebook groups I run.
  4. Schedule promo emails for the week
  5. Schedule engagement emails for the week
  6. Schedule posts for the week for BAITCAMP’s Instagram & Facebook Page
  7. Build, test or review a sales funnel.

I’m always frustrated on a Monday morning with the number of things I need to get done.

Getting these things done on a Sunday should give me a head start and stop me from feeling so frustrated. Even if some roll over to a Monday morning.

Daily Marketing

Now, this is where I’ve lacked consistency, especially throughout 2022.

I’ve got a lot of tasks on my daily habit tracker which seems a lot.

But all these things aren’t set in stone. I’m a bigger believer in “one is better than zero”, showing up is half the battle. As long as I do two or three of the key tasks, the ones that I don’t want to do, that I put off, then I’m in a good place

Here’s what my “daily method of operation” looks like for 2023.

Morning

  1. Cold/warm outreach, both via email and on social media.
  2. Social media engagement (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook groups).
  3. Content creation, scheduling and recycling.

Evening

  1. ‘Build In Public’ Tweet.
  2. Social media engagement (Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and TikTok).
  3. Answer questions on Quora.
  4. Take part in subreddits on Reddit.

Seven tasks isn’t a lot!

In practice, I’ve broken it down into 14 distinct tasks, 6 in the morning, and 8 in the evening.

What I’ve done is create a single task for social media engagement on Twitter, and another for LinkedIn. It looks like I will have a lot to do each day. In fact, it’s a case of rinse and then repeat on distinct social media platforms.

The two main tasks that I’m going to force myself to do are cold outreach and content creation.

These are the things that I’ve put off, not only in 2022 but for years.

So my aim for 2023 is to get amazing at these things. As I’ve not got a large audience, direct outreach is something I need to do to get where I want to be. But content creation is the one I’m most excited about, and I’m going to do more of it in 2023.

My Content Creation Plan For 2023

“Create the content that you consume the most”

Many people have said this over the years and it’s something that has stuck with me since 2020.

I haven’t been good enough at putting this into practice. Me, I love skimming over blog posts and articles online. So my POA is to use blog posts as the driver for all my content.

One of the biggest things I learned in 2022. Was about content redistribution and repurposing.

I’ve struggled with having enough social media posts to share, and emails to send.

I thought that it wasn’t that I had much to say, knowledge to share. But that was a huge misconception. I’ve been blogging for years, but haven’t put in place a framework to take that content and redistribute it.

So how I am going to change all that?

It Starts With A Blog Post

When I reviewed my blogs, I’ve 114 blog posts that I’ve already written and published.

At the back end of 2022, I came up with another 56 post ideas that I wanted to write.

However, 20 of those are going to be 3 or more distinct blog posts. 20 multiplied by 3 is 60, plus 56 is 116. Add that to the 114 I’ve already written, and that’s a whopping 230 posts.

That means I could share one each weekday for almost an entire year, that’s insane.

So, now my goal is to take my existing blog posts and update or rewrite them.

Next, I’m going to plug them into a framework called my “Recycling” checklist. Which means I will either by sharing on different platforms. Republishing them on other platforms such as Medium. Or repurposing them by creating other forms of content that can be published.

Once I’ve updated all my existing content, refining my recycling checklist as I go along. Then I will then start writing the next posts that I’ve mapped out.

My Recycling Checklist

What I’m going to share next, I can’t take any credit for.

A lot of what I’ve learned is by taking a course by Justin Welsh. Reading a blog by Gary Vee. And listening to a podcast from Jim Edwards.

What I’ve tried to do is to take all this knowledge and test out a framework that works for me.

However I’m not sure if it will work at all, it’s something that will be organic, changing, growing, and adapting.

So, after I’ve written or updated a blog post, here’s what I plan to do (in order of ease).

Share On

  • Reddit
  • HackerNews
  • Facebook Page
  • Facebook Groups
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter

Republish On

  • Medium
  • Quora
  • LinkedIn Article
  • HackerNoon
  • IndieHackers
  • Product Hunt
  • Send as an email to the relevant list

Repurpose As

  • Video Summary
    • Long-form
      • YouTube
      • IGTV
    • Short Form
      • Reels
      • TikTok
      • YouTube Shorts
      • Facebook Page
  • Long-form SM posts
    • LinkedIn
    • Facebook Page
    • Facebook Groups
    • Subreddits
  • Twitter: thread(s)
  • Twitter: 10-20 tweets
  • Infographic
    • Pinterest
    • Instagram
  • Carousel
    • Instagram
    • LinkedIn
  • Meme
    • Pinterest
    • Instagram
    • LinkedIn
    • Twitter
    • Facebook Groups

Phew, that’s a lot of work don’t you think?

But, it will be worth it, once created all these “assets” will be there for you anytime you need to share something. If you don’t know what to share, you can go back to these assets and pick one.

“You Can Only Measure What You Manage”

God knows how many times I’ve quoted this saying, I can’t remember where I heard it first.

So how will I keep on top of what I’ve created and distributed?

Here is a screenshot of the checklist I’ve lined out using Notion.

So once I’ve shared a post, republished and repurposed it, I can tick off each task once completed. The saving of all the repurposed content will happen inside Google Drive. And I will save the link in the checklist for future reference/ease of access.

The great thing about this checklist is that I’m going to apply it to other content too.

Starting with any landing pages that I create across my websites. I can apply the same recycling framework to any of those. I’ve also created the same checklist for any videos too. I’ve got a YouTube channel where I’m hoping to help others who are on a similar journey.

Plugging in this framework will also help me spread the word about these videos too.

Sticking To It, Output, No Input

I’ve already mentioned that I’m an “action faker”.

My biggest crutch with this is that I read a lot, and spend a lot of time listening to podcasts.

So straight after Christmas, I treated myself to a few more new books. As well as listening to a few podcast episodes that I wanted to listen to. But from January 2023 I’m on an information diet.

What does my information diet look like?

From a reading point of view, I’m stopping myself from buying any new books.

So I can only read the books I already have. But only when I need to overcome a hurdle. The same goes for podcasts or audiobooks.

I’ve found too much input impacts my output.

So for 2023, I will only input things once I’ve done a good day of output. Or while doing things like running or stretching.

Why Do All This?

Are you asking “why are you doing all this work”?

It’s not an easy thing to answer, but it comes back to the first point of my POA for the year

“Focus on income-generating tasks”

I can’t say that these are going to be income-generating, I’m hoping that they can help.

Last year I saw a tweet that stuck with me “Put more Buy Now buttons on the internet”. That is where this plan has come from, the more people that see your content. In turn visit your website or profile, the better.

Yes, there are others things like making sure your website converts. But driving traffic to your site is the best way to figure everything else out.

God knows how many times I’ve called out the saying “Build it and they will come” on Social Media.

I’m guilty more than most of not getting shit out there, that’s why I’m trying this for 2023.

Will it work, only time will tell.

Starting 2023 Off On The Right Foot

Like many people, I gave myself time off over Christmas and New Year.

Saying “From the 3rd of January I’m going to hammer it”.

So I wanted to focus on my business, and my health and fitness. The universe had other ideas. From the evening of the 2nd of January 2023, I felt like shit, with aches and pains, testing positive for COVID on the 4th of January 2023.

However, I’ve not let that stop me. I tweeted and posted this on LinkedIn:

“2023’s mantra: disciplined consistency”

Even though I’ve felt like “death warmed up” for days, I’ve still been able to write this blog post. I’ve also ticked off a few tasks that I’ve been putting off for a year. And started putting in place a new scheduling structure for my social media posts.

It’s not the way I wanted the year to start.

But I’ve not let it stop me.

Set Harsh Deadlines

This is something that I’ve been terrible at for years.

So looking back at last year’s blog post. I gave myself till the end of March 2022 to complete things.

I’ve learned my lesson. This year I’ve got a smaller to-do list of things I’ve been putting off all related to content. And I have given myself a strict deadline to get it all done by the end of January 2023.

Why do this?

Well, to put all the things in place that I’ve talked about in this post, I need to “get out of my own way”.

So I need to stop using procrastination tools, and action faking. And believing things will happen out of the blue. What I need to do is to get out of my comfort zone, put myself and my products out there and see what happens.

There are a few tasks that I’ve been putting off. Like creating a new playlist for my YouTube Channel called “The Solopreneur Survival Guide”. And creating a backlog of stories and posts that I can share on LinkedIn.

I’ve got a post-it note on my monitor that says:

This year, that is what I need to do.

Conclusion

For me, 2023 is going to be about focused disciplined consistency.

To remove distractions, stop procrastinating and follow the 3-step process I talked about:

  1. Focus on income-producing activities
  2. Start engaging on social media daily to build an audience
  3. Create content on daily basis and distribute using a “recycling” checklist

Am I confident that these three things will help me move forward? I’m not sure.

All I know is that they are things I’ve not done in the past.

What I’ve learned is that if a task feels uncomfortable, you always seem to be putting it off. That you never seem to get around to it.

These are the tasks that you need to do, the ones you MUST do.

Here’s wishing you an incredible 2023 in whatever you undertake.

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Who Is Phil Hughes

I am a coder, content creator & software consultant for start-ups and FTSE 100 companies. I am obsessed with productivity, self-improvement, and building a lifestyle business.
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