One of the biggest challenges as an entrepreneur is balancing your energy and your time. Whether you’re building a business while working full-time or you’re a full-time entrepreneur, it’s tempting to work late into the evening, answering emails or taking care of just one last thing. With phones, email, and social media at our fingertips, your work-life balance is in jeopardy.
My work as a speaker, trainer, and coach often require me to work non-standard hours so that working in the evenings have quickly become the norm. (And the occasional Saturday morning, too! Where does it all end?!)
Another challenge of balancing my work and life is transitioning my mind from work to home so I’m not writing speeches in my head as I’m lying in bed trying to fall asleep. Even when I’m not actively working, my mind is working if I don’t create balance.
If you are an entrepreneur, I’m sure you can relate. How many nights have you stayed up answering emails or strategizing late into the night?
An unbalanced life leads to stress, health issues, overwhelm, and burnout. It can negatively affect your personal and business relationships.
Your time and energy are precious resources, and you will accomplish more with a healthy work-life balance.
Here are 10 of the best work-life balance habits to implement if you want to be a successful (and happy) entrepreneur:
1. Set Working Hours
Building your business sometimes means working 40+ hours a week or working a non-standard schedule. Still, it’s important to set business hours. Maybe your business hours are 9 am – 9 pm on certain days, but after 9 pm consider your business closed for the night! Set an alarm on your computer or phone if you think you’ll be tempted to work past your closing time.
2. Unplug When You’re Not Working
Step away from the computer, turn off your phone, and unplug outside your working hours. That means don’t keep your phone near your bed when you’re sleeping!
3. Schedule One Admin Day Per Week
If you meet with clients, pick one day a week that you do not meet with clients and use this day to take care of administrative tasks such as catching up on emails, organizing, planning, and completing paperwork.
4. Take At Least One Day Off Per Week
Take at least one day off per week. A day off means no calls, no email, and no work.
5. Schedule Social & Family Time
Add time in your schedule for friends, family, and fun. If you have time blocked out on your calendar it’s easier to avoid over-scheduling yourself and making work a priority over life.
6. Schedule “Me” Time
Schedule at least 30 minutes a day for some down time. Use that 30 minutes to meditate, read a book, or whatever activity relaxes and refreshes you.
7. Schedule Meal Times
Avoid working lunches and working dinners if possible. Give yourself time to eat and enjoy your meals without distraction.
8. Have a Dedicated Work Space
Whether you have a home office, go to the library, or rent co-working space, have a dedicated work space. When you’re in your workspace, you work. When you’re in your living space, you live. Avoid working in the living room or bedroom, and avoid taking care of personal to-do’s in your workspace.
9. Cross One Item Off Your To-do List Without Doing It
Make a list of all of your to-do’s activities. Do they all really need to be done? If you find an item that is not adding value to your life, cross that item off your to-do list.
10. Adjust & Readjust
If you slip into old patterns and your life becomes unbalanced, just start fresh the next day and adjust your schedule. Take a break to restore balance and don’t be too hard on yourself.
What changes to your schedule and to-do list are you going to make?
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