Balancing time and energy as an entrepreneur can be difficult. The demands of the business can be unceasing, as new challenges tend to emerge with each passing day. In order to avoid the trap of burnout which an alarming number of entrepreneurs succumb to, it is crucial to apply analysis and self-discipline to your daily routine. The passion for your business can drive you on, but that passion needs to be tempered through diligent, purposeful, effort toward maintaining a healthy balance of personal and business life. The following are seven tips to apply in your efforts to maintain mental and emotional wellness as an entrepreneur.
Tip #1: Organize Your Workload
One of the biggest complaints from those who are lacking organizational skills is that they don’t know where all of their time goes. Long hours can be spent on a project, only to realize that not much tangible has been accomplished. A primary task toward achieving the structure necessary to sustain a healthy life balance is to get organized. Spend a week, or so, keeping accurate records of how each hour of your time is spent, and look for ways to optimize your productivity.
Tip #2: Monetize Your Time
Once you have a good grasp on how your time is spent, it is easier to consider that time as money. As passionate as you are about the business items or services you are producing, you didn’t get into it to work for free. If your time analysis has revealed that you are spending excessive amounts of energy on tasks which don’t produce much in the way of monetary reward, it may be worth considering bringing in some outside support or finding other ways to revamp your process.
Tip #3: Prioritize Your Duties
With time and effort calculated in terms of eventual payoff, a prioritization list can be generated. When it comes to facilitating and monitoring your business, duties can be arranged in a hierarchy of importance. Marking off the most important items on your to-do list, each day, can allow for better sleep, at night. The less important things can wait or be delegated.
Tip #4: Set Your Boundaries
In the absence of prioritization, it is hard to know where healthy boundaries for your attentions lie. The entrepreneurial spirit has a way of allowing business matters to seep into every aspect of life. It requires conscious effort to ensure that vital time is set aside for tending to matters which are not directly related to work. Determine what hours which be spent on business, and which will be set aside for other purposes. Then, stick to those parameters.
Tip #5: Value Your Self-Care
You are not your best business self if you are not tending to the other aspects of yourself. Failure to engage in regular self-care activities can result in increased stress. Stress leads to burnout. A benefit of setting well-designed boundaries for how your time is spent means that you can schedule in regular periods of rest and recreation. Treat your time spent on rejuvenation with as much reverence as your working time, and you will be equipped to deal with each day, anew.
Tip #6: Nurture Your Relationships
The initial steps in forming a business often require burning the candle at both ends. Friends and family are often very supportive of this, as they can conceive of the amount of energy it takes to launch your ideas into the air. If you are still neglecting them after launch, however, there is likely something wrong. Our loved ones aren’t able to go without nurturing the relationship, indefinitely. Kids grow up; spouses grow discontent; and friends part ways. Don’t let your business mean the end of your relationship support network.
Tip #7: Keep Your Eyes on the Future
The daily aspects of running a business can wear a person down. When we are stuck in the trenches, it is hard to lift our eyes to any distant horizon. Maintaining vision, however, is the key to
perseverance. Staying focused on where you are wanting your business to go can assist in making decisions of priority and can help to provide insight into any adjustments or compromises which need to be made. Along with a vision for the business is the necessity of vision of your personal wellbeing. Your own mental and physical health choices will contribute to your ability to live long, and your choices to nurture your relationships will contribute to your ability to live well. Maintain your focus on long term perspective in order to avoid missing the mark of overall life success.
About Dr. Jeff Nalin
Dr. Jeff Nalin, Psy.D is an award-winning licensed Clinical Psychologist and the Founder and Chief Clinical Director at Paradigm Malibu Treatment Center. The center has locations in both Malibu and San Francisco.