The life of an entrepreneur is not an easy one. It may seem fun and even glamourous to an onlooker, because somehow folks often think you’re making tons of money. Some even dare to ask the question: “But you have all this time…you can more than do X!” Uh huh. How many of you get that?
It is the huge misconception that because you run your own business you have oodles and oodles of free time (since many of us especially consultants work from home or go to the client). Tsk Tsk. If they only knew the truth.
What most don’t know is that sometimes we burn the candles on both ends for months and even years especially when our business is young. And we don’t enjoy profits until many years later unless you have exceptional circumstances. We toil all day and in some cases we work all night. The sad part is that sometimes our social life, relationships or family life suffers during this growth stage.
Our partners sometimes don’t understand why we devote all this time to what seems like another living, breathing person (our business) that at times seems to be in vain. And our friends don’t get it either when we have to cancel dinner or events at the last minute for the umpteenth time.
We don’t take vacations very often and most times we need people to do the needful like pick up the kids or the dry cleaning. I remember one mother telling me that she got so caught up, that she forgot her child at school one day! (Don’t let that be you!).
What’s worse is the emotional side. Sometimes we bear the burden alone wondering if we would be able to pay all our bills this month or whether anyone would even care if we closed up shop tomorrow.
You often wonder if you have lost your mind to leave your cushy job at Company X where you could have hopped on a plane and gone to Miami with your girlfriends or invest in that new iPhone that you’ve been eyeing for months each time you go to the mall.
We ask ourselves: Is the sacrifice worth it? Am I making a difference/am I filling a need in society? Ask your loyal customers to do testimonials and there you would find your answer.
Here are 12 tips to keep your head above water whenever you feel this way:
1- Pace yourself. Stay organized and schedule like activities on the same days so you can kill two birds with one stone. Do what you can today. Don’t feel guilty. Tomorrow has 24 more hours.
2- Pick a day or two in the week that you can do absolutely nada! If you can’t afford to do this, delegate or pick 2 or 3 hours in a day for some “me-time” right there in your office.
3- Make time to eat healthy (and on time!), drinks lots of water and get your beauty sleep! Even if you use one or two days to burn the midnight oil, on the next days slow your pace!
3- Treat yourself at least once a week to a movie, an ice-cream cone with the hubby or wife, a play date with the kids, a long drive, a beach run or just sit with a cup of tea or glass of wine and watch the sun go down from your front porch or the sea (as we say in trinbago ☺).
5- Make time to have fun. Whether it’s a play, a party, a hike, fishing, a romantic picnic or stroll, shopping or my favourite – karaoke!
6- Have a safe and healthy space and way to vent your feelings – whether it’s your yard, singing at top volume in your bedroom or car (preferably at night when other motorists can’t see you!) or dancing away your stresses in your living room. Or even if you have to scream into your pillow or take deep breaths every now and then…Just exhale all that negativity from the day! Works wonders for your body and mind. It beats swearing at your client.
7- Don’t bring work into your bedroom.
8- Compartmentalize different parts of your life. Family. Friends. Clients/Business. Social media. Everything/everyone in its rightful place so there’s no blurring of the lines, unless you purposely choose for it to be blurred!
9- Distance yourself from toxic people and situations. Quiet the “noise” (self-talk/naysayers)
10- Know your worth. Don’t place yourself in unhealthy situations or client relationships that cause you to compromise your standards or value.
11- Don’t beat up on yourself. You are only human. Don’t compare your journey to your neighbour. You are you and they are them. We each have unique talents and experiences that make us stand out from the rest. Nobody can ever take that away from you. Just shine.
12- Make each day count and transform each negative into a positive learning experience.
Please shoot us a comment below and tell us if this works for you!
Until next time.
T&T’s Entrepreneurs Team