Taking breaks is frowned upon in today’s entrepreneurial society. Working yourself ragged is unhealthy. So where is the balance? Is there even a balance?
That is part of the art of an entrepreneur. Learning to maintain this balance and adapt as needed, is a necessary skill for anyone especially entrepreneurs.
So what does this balance look like? It depends on the person, goals, and circumstances. A single parent’s work-life balance will differ from someone who has no kids. However, one thing is certain, in the entrepreneurial world, there is no room for excuses. Not even ‘valid‘ ones.
On the other hand you need to intentionally make time for your self care, growth, and life.
Cars can’t run on E and neither can you.
Putting the maximum amount of effort into your goals requires consistent energy, focus, and stamina.
First things first, you will need to identify your work and life needs. As stated earlier, this will look different for everyone but the focus should be the same. You should put as much energy and time into pursuing your goals as possible. Time is a tool that people often take for granted. Ask yourself, are you getting the most out of your 24 hours?
We often joke about how celebrities seem to have 30 hour days. They don’t have any magical time extender, they (or their team) are just master time managers. Celebrities and CEO’s are just ordinary people like you and I who have chosen to do the work to get them an extraordinary life.
Successful individuals don’t color their responsibilities as excuses not to do their work. Life happens to everyone, nobody is an exception. Using excuses such as “I’m tired” or “I don’t have time” only prolong if not completely hinder any progression. Most adults are tired AF. Get over it. I’m a single mother to an autistic toddler, full time employee (working swing shifts), blogger, & entrepreneur. If I can find the time and energy why can’t you?
If you can’t find the time, make it! Your current schedule may not allot time for your goals. Sure, they may sound nice out loud and look good on paper but are they a priority? They say we make time for the the things we really want in life. If you are having trouble making the time, then reassess and ask yourself, have I made this goal a priority?
Focus on one goal at a time. I mention this a lot because it is very important. I have learned from experience that you shouldn’t take on too many things at once. This isn’t to say that you can’t have more than one goal, just devote your undivided attention to whatever goal you are working on at the time. Many goals have multiple components to their accomplishment, but no matter what you are working on, give it your full focus to maximize your performance.
Plan, Plan, and PLAN AGAIN
Once you find time to work on your business, plan out the allotted time in as much detail as possible. If you designate 2 hours to write a blog post, WRITE! Don’t switch back and forth between that and Pinterest, Instagram, or whatever else. Even if it relates to your business, if it is not the designated time to work on that component then you are distracting yourself from the task at hand! Planning ensures you have the time to give each aspect of a goal your undivided attention.
Plan for the unexpected. Life happens, stuff comes up. Have a contingency plan in place just in case things don’t go your way. Planning should be proactive for this very reason. You should always plan to get as much done as humanly possible (without sacrificing quality) in the designated time frame. Don’t look at a task and think “oh I’ve got plenty of time to get this done” and then procrastinate. If something comes up and you’ve saved the task for the last minute then you risk not getting it done. It’s better to get things done early than to save them until the very last minute. The quicker you complete a task, the sooner you can move on to the next! Hashtag #progression!
Get into the habit of organizing and micro managing your time. You should monitor your time like Mr. Krabs monitors his money. You should know where every minute of your life is spent. Planners and agendas need to be your holy grail. I’ve done both block and hour by hour scheduling. For me, scheduling my work into blocks (2-4 hour time frames) is the way to go. Try both and see what works for you.
Live Your Best Life
Don’t forget the “life” aspect of your work-life balance. At some point you will have to make time for yourself and loved ones! Outsourcing is a great way to free up time not only to do more for your business but to also live a little. With Upwork and Fiverr literally anyone can find people to do tasks for a decent price point.
Making time for yourself and loved ones is also a form of self-care. Practicing self care regularly helps to keep you refreshed and in a positive mindset which aids in productivity. Remember what I said earlier about running on E!
We only get one life so make sure you are taking the time out to actually live! Certain experiences only come once. Your child will never turn 1 again. They will only have one first day of kindergarten. When prioritizing your goals don’t forget about yourself and those around you whom you love and care about.