Being an entrepreneur is progressively become a more popular choice than working as an employee. As the head of your own business you get the autonomy to do the work you want to do, when you want to and with who. This is the biggest drawcard for many when they first set up their new business, but many quickly realise it’s easy to blur the line between business and life and feel like your business is taking over.
So how do you keep the space to live the life you value and have quality time away from your business when it is so tempting to keep an eye on things all the time?
Key Questions to ask yourself:
- Do you have strategies to clock off from your business? Is there an indicator for you that your business day has finished?
- Can you separate your personal social media from professional networks?
- Do you set limits with clients?
- Do you block out effective work time so you work productively?
- Does your work space allow you to have clearly define business and work space?
Once you have spent some time considering these questions you may already have some of the answers you are looking for. By changing some of these key elements the line between business and personal life will start to become more well defined. But there are some additional strategies that I think will assist you even further.
Strategies to help you create a better balance
- Keep your mobile business free – think about whether you really need to have your emails instantly downloaded and which social media apps are essential on your mobile. For example it may be enough to just check LinkedIn on your computer. We tend to have our mobiles glued to us a lot of the time whereas our computers are used more intentionally so this can be a way to separate business from your everyday life.
- Put your mobile away – it can be common as an entrepreneur to suffer from FOMO, giving yourself a complete break from technology and the outside world is a good way to check in with yourself and be more mindful in your life.
- Lower your expectations – think about whether you need to reply straight away to that email or facebook message. Is it going to make a big difference to wait an hour or two? Sometimes it’s more about our internal talk around a situation more than a client or contact’s expectations.
- Is it urgent or important? – this is a valuable question when you are feeling unbalanced. Think about the task or problem and if it isn’t in one of those 2 categories you want to reassess the space you are giving it.
- Have purposeful work time – when you sit down to work make sure you are ready to work, that your environment has everything you need and you know exactly what your tasks are in order of priority.
- Set limits with clients – make it clear when you work and what is acceptable at other times. This may be included in your client contract or in a simple email but make sure everyone knows so you don’t end up having a long text conversation in the middle of a family outing.
- Social Media – this is still a tricky area after all, as the name suggests it’s all about being social but it is no secret that it’s vital for businesses. Many people have tried to get around this by creating 2 different profiles but unfortunately that violates facebook community standards and the last thing you want is to lose all access to facebook. You can however separate your friends into different lists and then post to just that list. The other thing you can do is add personal groups to your favourites lists so you see those first and have to intentionally go to your business groups.
- Marketing your business – it’s vital to have a solid marketing plan in place but when it comes to content creation and posting many businesses find it a huge time drain. You can avoid this by ensuring you have good templates set up as well as effective system for scheduling and planning posts.
These strategies will assist you to create a barrier between the 2 parts of your life that are both so valuable and mean that whatever you are focused on gets your full attention.
What strategies do you use to be more effective with your focus?
Sharon Pegrum is an Executive Virtual Assistant who works with heart-led women to create the space in their businesses to share their important messages with the world. She specialises in copywriting, social media and bookkeeping. As a homeschooling, gentle parenting mama Sharon loves the flexibility of her business and is blessed to work with many inspired business women.