We all know there’s nothing “magical” about January 1st.

But here’s the thing…

We all REALLY like the fresh start feeling the new year brings us.

There’s just something about the new year that makes us want to clear the decks in a wipe-your-arm-across-the-table-and-push-everything-to-the-floor kind of way, get rid of clutter a la Emily Ley, organize #allthethings, and simplify ev-er-y-thing!!

Am I right or am I right?!

So why not set your business up for success by giving it the clean slate and fresh start it deserves this year?! Why not set yourself up to have your most intentional and productive year yet?!

Black female entrepreneur working on her laptop with a notepad and pencil cup beside her.

(This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you if you make a purchase using these links.)

HOW TO SET YOUR BUSINESS UP FOR SUCCESS THIS YEAR

Maybe you don’t know where to start. Maybe you don’t know what to do or how to give your business a fresh start. (Especially after last year!!)

Never fear!! 🥰

Today, I’m sharing a few of my very favorite ways to give yourself and your business a clean slate and a fresh start so you can head into the new year refreshed and ready for success!!

No matter what day of the year it is, you can start fresh and see success with these tips!!

Every day is a fresh start quote featuring a bold script font in white and hot pink on a light pink background.

And if you want to keep that fresh start feeling around all year long (I don’t blame you!!), make sure you read all the way to the end of this post!! 🤩

STEP 1 | CLEAN UP YOUR WORKSPACE

Your workspace should be an inspirational and productive place TO DO WORK. It should not be a dumping ground for everything else. Physical clutter is mental clutter (as Emily Ley likes to say) and clutter is DISTRACTING!! Don’t let clutter keep you from getting stuff done!!

Pro Tip: If you don’t already have a designated workspace, make it a goal to set one up ASAP!!

Related Post: How to Set Up and Love Your Workspace

STEP 2 | CLEAN UP YOUR DESKTOP

If your desktop has become a catch-all for documents, photos, screenshots, PDFs, and downloads. It’s time to clean it up and embrace a folder system. I promise it’ll be so much easier to find the files you need when you need them instead of wasting precious time searching high and low for them. Your business will run more efficiently and your computer will actually run better without all that crap cluttering up your desktop.

Pro Tip: Group like-files together into folders, label them appropriately, and store them in one central folder on your desktop for easy access to everything.

Screenshot of a clean and organized desktop featuring a pink and gold confetti popper as the background.

STEP 3 | CLEAN UP YOUR INBOX

Does your inbox scream like that book Harry Potter opens in the Restricted Section every time you open it? If the answer is YES, it’s time to DO SOMETHING about that. Spend some time creating folders, labels, and rules to sort through and file emails faster. Unsubscribe from anything that doesn’t educate, entertain, inform, or inspire you. Last but not least, introduce your pointer finger to the delete key and let go (🎶) of anything that’s unimportant or more than 6 months old.

Pro Tip: Create an FAQ page to lessen the number of emails you receive every day.

STEP 4 | CLEAN UP YOUR PHONE

How many of the apps downloaded on your phone do you actually use? Do your swiping finger a favor and GET RID of the ones you don’t use!!

Pro Tip: Group like-apps together in folders like games, photography, social media, and productivity. You can even have a folder with the apps you use daily/most!! I recommend putting this folder on your home screen or even in the bottom row for easy access.

A pair of pearl earrings sit next to an iPhone with a clutter-free home screen.

STEP 5 | TAKE WORK EMAIL OFF YOUR PHONE

While you’re in deletion mode, go ahead and delete work email from your phone!! It’ll be quick and painless, I promise. And if you’re anything like me, you won’t even miss it!! #nobutreally

Pro Tip: If taking work email off your phone totally freaks you out 🤯, start by turning off your email account on nights and weekends. Once you get used to that (and you will), try a one-week trial period. This will ease you into not having work email on your phone, but eventually (trust me), you’ll want to leave it off completely.

Related Post: What Happened When I Took Work Email Off My Phone

STEP 6 | CLEAN UP YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA FEEDS

If your social media feeds (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) are filled with things that negatively impact you or drain you—unfriend, unfollow, or mute them. Fill your feeds instead with people, places, and things that educate, entertain, inform, and inspire you.

Pro Tip: I’m always shocked and amazed by the number of Facebook groups I find myself in at the end of each year. If you, like me, find the noise overwhelming, I recommend taking a close look at the groups you’re in. If you don’t interact with them regularly, can’t remember why you joined them, or no longer have interest in them—LEAVE THEM.

STEP 7 | SET UP YOUR NEW PAPER PLANNER

To me, nothing says new year like a new planner!! And I believe every female entrepreneur should have a paper planner that helps her manage her days and tackle her to-dos. But I know that setting up a brand new planner can be kind of intimidating so I recommend checking out my tried-and-true planner set up system!! I guarantee this will help you set up whatever planner you purchased so you actually use it all year long!!

Pro Tip: On move-in day, pour yourself a fresh cup of coffee or glass of wine, gather all your planner accessories, hit play on a good playlist, and HAVE FUN!!

Related Posts: How to Set Up Your Simplified Planner (Or Any Planner Really) + How to Make the Most of Your Paper Planner + How to Use the Simplified Planner (And Why I Love It)

STEP 8 | SET UP OR UPDATE YOUR PROJECT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM

If you’ve got things that need to be planned, mapped out, organized, managed, or kept track of (and I know you do) using a kick-butt project management application (like Asana or Trello) will do WONDERS for your productivity and efficiency.

Pro Tip: I switched from Trello to Asana this past summer (something I never thought I’d do in a million years) and it has changed the way I do just about everything. I credit this miraculous move to Louise Henry and her AMAZING Uplevel with Asana course!!

Screenshot of a color coded Asana dashboard.

STEP 9 | COLOR CODE ALL THE THINGS

If you’re not color coding things in your business yet, you need to start ASAP!! Because color coding will help you be a more organized, efficient, and productive business owner. Try it and see if you don’t believe me!!

Pro Tip: The key to color coding is to keep things as simple and consistent as possible. Because if it’s confusing or complicated, you simply won’t do it (or be able to follow it).

Related Post: 5 Things You Need to Be Color Coding in Your Business

STEP 10 | ASSESS WHAT WORKED + WHAT DIDN’T WORK IN YOUR BUSINESS LAST YEAR

Being honest (like really honest) about what worked and what didn’t work is one of THE BEST things you can do for your business. It’s important to know what your strengths are so you can continue doing them. It’s also equally important to know where you fall short so you can find solutions and do those things better going forward.

Pro Tip: Start with your list of what worked. That way, when you’re going over the things that didn’t, you can quickly look over and remind yourself that you’re still a rockstar!! Just because you have to change or tweak some things doesn’t make you any less.

Related Post: Have You Set Business Boundaries? Why You Need to Be!!

Black female entrepreneur working on her laptop with a notepad and pencil cup beside her.

STEP 11 | RESET YOUR MINDSET

Most people think mindset isn’t an important part of business success, but it’s actually the most important part. Really make it a goal this year to STOP the negative inner dialogue and replace phrases like “I can’t” with “I can”!! 👊🏻

Pro Tip #1: Visualize yourself being intentional and productive in your life and business this year. Prime yourself for success by envisioning good things coming your way!! #yougotthis

Pro Tip #2: Get yourself a set (or two) of these daily affirmation cards. Keep them at your desk, by your bed, or even in the bathroom (where you’ll see them as you get ready in the morning) and give yourself a little pep talk each day.

Related Post: 50 Quotes to Inspire & Motivate Female Entrepreneurs

STEP 12 | GOAL SETTING + GOAL PLANNING

I know people use these terms interchangeably, but goal setting and goal planning are actually two very different things. You see, goal setting is just a list of goals. Goal planning is the action plan you need to achieve them. You need both in order to CRUSH them!!

Pro Tip: I haven’t set yearly goals in years. I set quarterly goals that I break into monthly projects, weekly action plans, and then daily tasks. It’s much more manageable, actually doable, and way less stressful.

Related Post: Why Goals vs. To-Do Goals: Why Every Entrepreneur Needs Both

STEP 13 | GIVE YOUR BUSINESS A GIFT

What’s one thing that will make doing business (and life) better, easier, or funner in the new year? Maybe it’s hiring an in-person assistant to help you package orders a few hours a week. Maybe it’s hiring a virtual assistant to tackle social media or blogging for you. Maybe it’s an online course that will help you write better copy for your website. Maybe it’s finally investing in that new website template you really want, or a brand shoot, or a stock photo membership, or Canva templates, or a planner, or a cleaning service, or grocery delivery, or a sitter.

Pro Tip: Really give this some thought and treat yourself and your business to whatever it is that you need to do life and business BETTER in 2021!!

Related Post: 10 Things I Did for a Better Life and Business

STEP 14 | REST, REST, REST

Friends, taking care of yourself is taking care of your business. So schedule some time to REST. Actually write it on your calendar or in your planner: a day off, weekends off, an entire week off!! The hours you spend resting are just as important (if not more important) than the hours you spend working. So give yourself some much-needed and well-deserved rest!!

Pro Tip: This can totally be the gift you give your business!! It doesn’t cost anything, but the return on investment will be priceless.

HOW TO GIVE YOUR BUSINESS THE FRESH START IT DESERVES ALL YEAR LONG

You take such good care of your clients and customers, but when was the last time you took care of your business?! My Fresh Start Systems will help you save time, stress less, start fresh, and take really good care of your business each day, week, month, quarter, and year!!

Fresh Start Systems course mockup and course details on a yellow background

Fresh Start Systems is my signature set of business maintenance systems that will help you streamline the backend of your business with a detailed checklist and schedule that will keep your business running like a well-oiled machine all year long.

COPY AND PASTE MY FRESH START SYSTEMS INTO YOUR BUSINESS TODAY

(Don’t forget to use the code FRESHSTARTBLOG at checkout to get 10% off!!)


I hope these tips help you head into the new year with a clean slate, fresh start, and a happy heart!! If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments and I’ll get back to you.

I truly believe these tips will benefit you and your business as we begin a new year!! But only if you get going on these tips right away. (And I highly recommend that you do!!) Because that fresh start feeling is waiting for Y-O-U!!


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Black female entrepreneur working on her laptop with a notepad and pencil cup beside her.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own. I only share about the products and services I personally use and love most and think you will, too!!