As a small business owner, your occupation is important to you. But should the health of your business take precedence over your health and personal happiness?
Nearly 4 in 10 small business owners are working more hours per week than they were five years ago, thanks in part to a culture of connectivity. Smart phones enable us to communicate from nearly anywhere, and modern business protocol dictates that we respond promptly to inquiries and messages. Employees are in contact over the weekends, and customers are only a click away via social media.
So, when exactly does one draw the line between personal and professional lives? The answer to finding a successful balance, experts say, is picking your priorities and sticking with them. Establishing boundaries and building a schedule that allows for both work and personal life is crucial to avoiding burnout and maintaining relationships with friends and family.
As one entrepreneur puts it, “Figure out what is most important, and say no to everything else.”
Here are five tips for making the most out of your time – and money.
1. Keep a daily calendar – around the clock
Your business hours may be 9-5, but often the real work gets done after hours. Utilize a personal planner to schedule all of your tasks, even in the evenings. By being mindful of your calendar, you can more easily shift your responsibilities into another time slot if something pressing pops up.
2. Welcome to the machine
We may not have robot butlers to perform our daily tasks … just yet. But you can automate many tasks such as accounting, invoicing and paying bills just by using technology. A host of great apps and software programs are available to increase efficiency and help you make money. Check out www.waveapps.com to explore the world of automation apps and business performance software.
3. Get creative with eating, sleep and exercise
For your body to perform at its peak, there are some things you can’t skip. But with employees to manage, clients to handle and bills to pay, it’s tough to find the time. That’s when it’s necessary to get especially clever. Do what it takes to look after your health, whether that’s scheduling a 15 to 20 minute power nap after lunch, exercising on your lunch break, or negotiating a service exchange with a local healthy eatery.
4. It’s your business. Not your entire life.
There comes a time when being too connected can be a bad thing. To help avoid burnout, to set aside “offline” time to recharge your batteries and generate new ideas. Finding time for fulfilling, peaceful activities such as a walk in the woods or a spa session has been shown to have a considerable effect on your emotional and mental balance.
5. – No regrets, No reservations.
It’s easy to focus on how little time you have … instead of making the most of the time you’ve got. Ensure that your time with family and friends is well spent by preparing potluck dinners, participating in organized sports or planning fun outings.