If only every day could be a day at the beach – that warm glow on your skin, salty air on the tip of your tongue, relaxing sunlight that seeps deep into your bones.

For business owners, that “me” time tends to be the catalyst that kickstarts new endeavors. You gain a sense of renewal as you look ahead to what’s new and exciting. And with the autumn rush right around the corner, there’s no better time to prepare.

If you’ve been keeping up with our summer series, you should have carved out some down time by now (and if not, why not?) and now you’re ready to jump into the final quarter’s colorful pile of leaves!

To help you get started, here are our top tips for bottling up some of that sunshine and using it to fuel the Fall ahead:

  1. Schedule time to focus on year-end tasks

You can’t tackle a project without first allowing yourself time to prepare. Year-end should be handled similarly. From 1099’s and budget to your year-end review and goal setting, setting time aside specifically to take a look at the previous year is a must. Get it on the calendar. Label it. Prepare for it. Not only will the process go smoother with time and preparation, but you’ll allow yourself time to also think ahead to the coming year.

  1. Revisit your Budget

How did your financials fair this year? Quite a loaded question, we know. When you schedule your time for year-end, looking back on your financials and how well you stayed on budget is a top priority. Get those hard numbers, take a good look at them and see what happened this year that you can improve next year. Figure out what worked and plan to expand upon that. Numbers don’t lie, and that’s the truth of it.

  1. De-clutter your workspace

Love that fresh-clean feeling? Well, so does your mind when it comes to your workspace. Now’s the time to throw out the clutter and to make room for all things new and wonderful. Studies prove that a tidy desk helps boosts productivity. And who doesn’t love that?

  1. Get Organized

What better way to capitalize on a decluttered workspace than to get organized! Organization is key to productivity. Whether it’s your desk, your computer files, your schedule, or even your own headspace, organization is one of the common-denominators of success. There are many ways to incorporate organization into your business, so take time to find out what works best for you.

  1. Ask for Help

Coming into the final quarter is a perfect time to measure your productivity. If you’ve been tracking your time (T-Sheets, anyone?) then you’ll know exactly where your time went over the last couple months. Analyzing that data is also what you need to decide whether your business is ready for the next step of a hire (or additional staff hires, if that’s what the numbers say). Remember, if you’re unsure of where to start, a remote assistant is the perfect way to start small. Delegate a small task, see how it fits, and then work up from there.

  1. Write down the goals you didn’t get to yet

It’s hard to be honest with yourself sometimes. But there’s no way to better ourselves without honesty. Goal setting is a useful tool because you can look back on what you were able to accomplish. And, more importantly…what you weren’t. It’s OK if you didn’t get to everything you had planned. But do not let that stand in the way. If they didn’t happen this year, there’s no reason why they won’t next year. Which brings us to…

  1. Start making plans to reach those goals in the new year

I know it may seem that the new year is still off in the distance, but it really isn’t. Year-end is closer than you realize. And that means new priorities to set and new goals to reach. And we all know that a goal without a plan is just a dream. Take 3 of your new goals and write the first three steps you need to turn those goals into plans. Simple as it may sound, it’s the starting point to something great.

We can’t stress this enough: time away to decompress is so, so important. It’s during those re-energizing moments when your mind makes room to invite the “next big thing.” Without time away to refocus and allow your mind to settle, you will be forever lost in the nuance. Let that sunlight carry you into the chilly months. Let it fuel you.