Raise your hand if you feel like your life is ruled by your phone. You take a coffee “break” during work, but end up refreshing your inbox constantly. You dash off just one more email before turning off your light, but are still left feeling like there just aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done—let alone to have any fun.
You're like many other entrepreneurs out there...don’t panic we have some solutions to better balance your life. The point of technology was to simplify and streamline things; to make things more accessible and to give us more free time but it has done quite the opposite. Because we have this tool, we are now expected to produce twice as much work and twice as many results. We are also expected to do it all, while doing twenty other things. Being a hard worker is certainly an admirable trait, but not when you are working so hard that you are stressed. Stress leads to many other issues and challenges and all that productivity will eventually turn on you.
Having a work-life balance is important because without it, the stress is killing us and causing everything from fatigue to other serious health issues. Most people take the approach of,’ if I work a little bit longer and sleep a little bit less, I will get caught up.’ Some people take the approach of doing the most important tasks first but most experts say that the real place to start in having a happy, healthy work-life balance comes from focusing on the things that make you happiest first. For myself personally, I know that when I have brain storm sessions, I find it much more enjoyable to grab a glass of wine, join my girlfriends, and just chatter away. The input from everyone, along with some laughter always does the trick and makes it a much more pleasant experience.
Finding time to achieve your professional goals and still have a life can and likely always will be a challenge for people, but with a few simple steps you can ease the strain and make a good healthy impact on your life and your career.
Honesty...it’s the number one thing most people look for in a partner and it’s the number one thing recommended in a happy healthy work - life balance. Be honest with yourself and others
Setting a daily intention for yourself is a great way to stay on top of this. When you do this, it makes it easier to take an inventory of your motivation and your reasons for each thing you do during the day. Are you taking on extra projects because you really want to hit a sales goal, or because you were afraid if you admitted you were too busy that things would fall apart? It’s time to get real with yourself. By getting real with yourself, you’ll be able to invite healthy balance into your life, rather than just making decisions out of fear. The same thing
applies with your social life. Make plans! Don’t make plans to make plans because it often turns out to be a let down on the other end. Carve one night each week or month, or whatever suits you to make time.
I recently found that my family and friends were saying, ‘you’re too busy with work, I never see you.’ It was just as exhausting hearing that as it was always working. So, every other Wednesday I brought the gang to me. I invited both my family and my friends to come for a bbq. Each person brings a dish and we all just chat. It’s an opportunity to get everyone together in one room so that I can at least spend some times with them and let them know that they are important.
Your have priorities so figure out what they are...what they REALLY are.
‘It’s 5:00am….the dreaded 5:00am….OMG would the alarm literally just stop and would someone please just give me a few more hours in the day?’ Does that sound like you because it use to sound like me, and every other entrepreneur I know.
Here’s what I learned, and trust me, I learned it the hard way. YOU DON’T NEED MORE HOURS….Warren Buffet became a huge success with only 24 hours so you can too. What you need is streamlined expectations of your time and how you should be using it. There is a perception that ‘you can have it all’ and maybe you can, maybe you can’t. You certainly cannot have it all if you aren’t using your time properly. Take an inventory...what are your priorities. If they don’t start with eating and sleeping than, you’ve got this all wrong. Start with that and build around it. We have this belief that we have to do all and be all to be successful but let me tell you, you can be successful without doing EVERYTHING!
Let your house be messy for a day or two...honestly, no one cares. Make a schedule for certain tasks. If they aren’t benefiting you, are prohibiting you from growing or are simply wasteful then let them go. If you can’t let them go for whatever reason, learn to be ok if they don’t always happen or get done.
You're not perfect so why pretend to be - you're going to disappoint people so learn to be OK with it
Now that you’ve got some time with the gang and tightened your to-do-list, you’re ready to put things into action. You’ve made a plan to have balance, time with your friends and family, and decided to veto some things you do each month. DO NOT...and I repeat, DO NOT let other’s sway your decision….not the kids, not the husband, boyfriend, friends, or the trusted guilt trip of your boss.
You need to maintain balance for their benefit and of course your own. Over time they too will see the benefit of these changes and everyone will adapt. Things may not always mean a more favorable outcome for others but, hey, you are living for you aren’t you? This is about your balance, not theirs. You’re going to have to let people down just as, at times, they let you down…..you need to be ok with this because giving up some things, and realigning them isn’t easy and not everyone will like it. Don’t blatantly ignore and disregard people but honor and respect yourself and make good healthy choices. When you feel more balanced your progress and performance will increase as well as the quality of the time you spend with others.