“Think like a queen. A queen is not afraid to fail. Failure is another steppingstone to greatness.” – Oprah Winfrey
As women entrepreneurs, we face unique challenges because of our gender.
From managing the mental workload of our home lives to overseeing every aspect of our businesses, from struggling to be taken seriously by our male counterparts to carving out time to network and mentor other women entrepreneurs, and from working around the clock to trying to maintain our relationships, we risk some serious burnout. Throw the endless distraction of smart phones into the mix and the haphazardly balanced lives we’ve juggled are destined to come crashing down.
Interestingly, many of us became entrepreneurs for the freedom and flexibility, imaging this ideal working life where we work from home (or our own offices) and leave feeling fulfilled and energized. 👊
And while many of us are fulfilled by the businesses we’ve built, I know I am, my initial daydream did not match the reality of starting and building Activate Sales PRO.
In the beginning, I knew it would take a lot of unpaid hours to start up, to market myself, and to build a clientele, but before I knew it, I was challenged by a work life that was overflowing into my personal life. There was no distinction between where work ended and life began. I had to find real balance.
Essential to creating a sustainable work-life balance as a woman entrepreneur is creating boundaries and limiting distractions.
I started by making sure that I wasn’t overbooking myself with appointments or projects and supported that by minimizing social media and email use. I created an actual work day for myself and began leaving work at work.
For me, this meant...
taking my work email off my phone and only checking it during my “work hours” so that I could be present in my personal life.
I also removed social media apps from my phone to prevent me from mindlessly perusing and getting lost in the endless feeds of information (they call it a feed for a reason – we’re meant to digest it!),
and I installed a “News Feed Eradicator” on my web browser to replace my Facebook news feed with a quote. These simple steps not only improved my family life (my husband was getting pretty sick of me checking my phone non-stop) but they also made me so much more productive during my work day.
But probably the biggest hurdle for me was moving my business into an office and hiring on staff – I needed to start delegating work to other talented professionals.
You can start delegating the parts of the business that you hate doing – like bookkeeping, marketing, or writing – and as your business grows, begin hiring staff to assist you with your core service.
When you’re starting out, it’s easy to get caught in the “keep expenses down” and “do everything yourself” trap, but it’s just not sustainable. By freeing up more time in your work day, you give yourself more time for what really matters: doing the work you love, being a lifeline to your peers, and spending time with your family and friends.
Ultimately, balance benefits both you and your business, it’s just a matter of making it a priority.
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