Starting a small business from scratch is a dream that many people have, and that dream can come true if you put the hours in to make that business a success. But when you own a startup business, and in the early days especially, you can find yourself so immersed in work that it can be difficult to find an hour for yourself in the course of a day.
Of course, owning a business will take up a lot of your time, but it shouldn’t take over completely. In fact, you need rest time and a few hours here and there to do things you love in order to maintain any kind of focus on work tasks. So how is it actually possible to create a work/life balance as a small business owner?
1. Create a routine For more than just small business owners, creating a daily routine is the first step to achieving a balanced life. Now that you have nobody telling you what time you need to get up in the morning, how much time you should allocate to your ""to do"" list, and when you need to finish your day of work, you need to do all of this yourself. Instead of making it up as you go along, it is a great idea to set a regular routine into motion. Humans are creatures of habit – we respond well to routine, and by setting out a pattern for your day, you will be able to achieve much more than if you wade through without any sense of priority or timekeeping.
2. Stop looking at your emails While it is true that communication is key to business success, sometimes we can actually be bogged down by how overly connected we are. With access to our emails at any time of the day on our computers, tablets, and smartphone devices, constantly checking and responding to these emails can eat up huge amounts of time and attention. In reality, most of these emails are not going to be so urgent that they warrant an immediate response. Checking your emails as soon as you wake up and right throughout the day is just going to put you on edge, so only allow yourself to read and respond to emails three times in a day. You will be far more productive as a result, and have more time to enjoy things you love outside of work.
3. Reward yourself As a small business owner, you have nobody telling you that you are doing a great job or giving you a pat on the back – this means that you have to reward yourself. It’s important that you do this because it will give you the motivation to wake up tomorrow and put your best foot forward once again. Set yourself goals throughout the day, and in the evening reward yourself with something that is 100% not work related.
Go out with friends, cook yourself your favorite meal, or spend some much needed quality time with the family. The reward could really be anything – but it is important for your work/life balance that you get into the pattern of working hard but then also rewarding yourself.