As part of our continuing series on New Year’s Resolutions for business, we’re taking an important look at a topic that’s often overlooked by entrepreneurs: work/life balance.
The desire to “be my own boss” is one of the main reasons people start a business. They’re tired of the rigidity of the 9-5 existence and they want to call the shots in their own life. It’s an awesome reason to strike out on your own but it can sometimes have the effect of whittling away at the line between work and personal time.
Admit it, you’re probably guilty of responding to work emails in the evening or at the weekend; you’re probably struggling to turn the work switch off in your head. Smartphones have magnified this problem, keeping us plugged in to emails and chat apps like Slack. The truth is, it can’t go on forever. The only way to last long term as an entrepreneur is to learn to switch off and take a step back. For 2020, make it a goal to achieve a better work/life balance.
Understanding the Balance
Achieving a harmonious work/life balance is something that needs to be worked at constantly. Changes in workload and personal circumstances can cause the goalposts to shift our sense of balance. Look out for the following key indicators to know when you have achieved balance:
- You are satisfied with your work and home lives
- You can fulfill your multiple responsibilities at home, at work, and in the community without guilt or regret
- You have good physical health, emotional stability and strong social connections
- You have a sense of control over your life
- You feel that any decisions you make are informed choices rather than sacrifices
- You have realistic expectations about what you can and cannot do
What are some key signs you are out of balance?
- You’re constantly tired and feel like you’re running uphill all the time and getting nowhere
- You feel like you have no choices or control
- Life seems to be happening to you instead of you managing your life
- You can think of more things that aren’t getting done than are getting done
- You’re frequently challenged by guilt and regret that you’re neglecting areas of your life
Tips for Achieving a Healthy Work/Life Balance
- Schedule Brief Breaks During the Day: Your productivity and effectiveness will increase if you remember to step back and breathe every hour or two. Believe it or not, you and your employees will actually accomplish more if you take some time out.
- Set Priorities for Tomorrow: Be realistic about what you can achieve in the time you have available.
- Limit Emails: It’s ok to only check emails once or twice per day. Don’t be a slave to your work emails!
- Turn Devices Off: Protect your private time by turning off electronic communications. Don’t be available 24/7 – and your employees shouldn’t need to be either.
- Speak up Early: Resist the temptation to say yes immediately to every request.
- Take Vacation: No, it isn’t lazy or harmful to your business to take a break. In fact, you’ll likely come back renewed and ready to tackle issues head on.
Ready to Help
If one of your goals involves starting, or growing, a business in 2020, GD Commerce is here to help. Contact Us and find out how we can lessen the load.