Once a year, I immerse myself in a work-life planning session with my business partner/spouse, Chuck Horton.

A few years ago, we fleshed out a new vision for ourselves using our own planning method, Envision Plan Act — Track and Adapt, which Hware has been using for many years to help clients with their strategic and business planning.  The following is a high level excerpt from that session:

The Vision

  • Transition from a consulting-based business model to a software product-based business model.
  • Travel more. A lot more.
  • Explore different cultures and cuisines.
  • Work from anywhere in the world with our laptops and high-speed Internet connection. (That meant not owning a “location-based” business.)
  • Help entrepreneurs turn their dreams into a reality with our planning software.
  • Simplify our lives.

The Plan

  • Set up a business partnership and identify key roles for Brenda and Chuck.
  • Get rid of excess overhead by drastically cutting costs.
  • De-clutter and get rid of stuff we no longer need or want.
  • Embrace the mindset of a marathoner. Steady, consistent, and long-term was the attitude.
  • Focus — remove all distractions.

Balancing Work and Life in Moab, UT - Dead Horse State Park


We Took Action

Fast-forward to today —  we have phased out 80% of our consulting business (selling our time). We’ve also down-sized from our straw bale home in Northern California. And as I write this blog post, we are currently residing (for a few months) in Austin Texas as we embark on the launch of Actionplanr — a goal-planning software tool for entrepreneurs. Sign up here to be notified of our release date. The initial version is designed exclusively for female entrepreneurs!

It took me 6 months to purge 15 years of stuff! FREE at last, Free at last! Thank God Almighty I am Free at last!


Tracking Our Results

For goals to be met, they need to be tied to timelines or deadlines and there must be a way to measure success. In other words, how do you know if you’ve achieved your goals? By tracking and measuring your results.

Be Adaptable

When making plans, it is important to have backup plans and be flexible because sometimes plans don’t always pan out the way we anticipate. And, if you spend the time upfront thinking about best and worse case scenarios and preparing for them, you will be in a much better position to handle the unexpected.

The Good The Bad and The Ugly Of A Software Entrepreneur

Being a Software Entrepreneur  challenges me and propels me to be my best on so many levels. It is beyond fulfilling and thrilling!  I will never forget that awesome feeling of selling my first Internet-based business (an online corporate gift store I owned in the late 90s) to a floral company.

Having owned four businesses, I’ve had some great successes and I’ve had my share of setbacks too  — setbacks that have cost me time, money, and happiness. But after licking my wounds, I’ve always seemed to dust myself off, learn from my failures, get back up and continue moving forward.

I look at all my setbacks and successes in my personal and professional life as stepping stones for the work I do today  —- helping entrepreneurs.

And if you’ve been reading my blog or following my tweets on Twitter for any length of time you know that when I learn a new business strategy or find a helpful entrepreneurial tip, I love sharing it with you!  It’s one of the reasons why I founded the Meetup Group, Nevada County Online.

By the way, I recently passed the NCO Meetup Organizer baton to a new leadership team and they are crushing it over there!

As a small business owner who loves to teach, I will be sharing a lot more about my own personal and professional growth as I continue to build my software company. I will be pulling back the curtains and revealing some of  my “behind the scenes” of lessons learned as a software entrepreneur with the hope that you will gain some insight into your own business and life.

In addition, along with the upcoming launch of Actionplanr, we are very excited to be adding more online training programs over the next twelve months. (More details coming soon.)

From a successful fundraiser to a top producing real estate agent to a software entrepreneur, I know for a fact that there is not one RIGHT way to build a business.  There is no one-size-fits-all.  There is no silver bullet. There are many roads to success and failures.

As the business and personal world continues to move towards an interconnectedness due to technological advances, you can count on me to continue sharing my work-life experiences and expose the good, the bad, and the ugly…all with the intention of helping you make sense of your own work-life.

Most of all, I am grateful for the opportunity to serve you and help you build a business that can support the lifestyle that you envision.   Thanks for joining me on this wonderful journey!

Do you have any tips or strategies on work-life? Any past failures or success stories that helped foster growth in your business or life? Please share your comments below.

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