How To Beat Entrepreneurial Burnout!

How To Beat Entrepreneurial Burnout!

Quick question for you,

How many hours did you work last week?

This includes hours spent working on your business AND/OR hours spent at your day job.

Was it more than 30?

40?

50…?

As an entrepreneur, it can feel like you need to be pulling 12 hour days to keep your business afloat and see it to success. No more clocking in and clocking out. As a business owner, you may feel like you are ALWAYS on the clock.

The problem is, when you are pulling 12+ hour days, you are bound to hit exhaustion at some point. And if you keep pushing you are going to become completely burned out.

Some common signs that you are going to or have already hit “burnout” include:

Dramatic/impulsive lifestyle changes (stop working out, start eating out all the time, drinking more than usual, ending a relationship suddenly, moving)

Difficulty in relationships (not feeling social, snapping at your partner, feeling like a bad mom/wife/girlfriend/daughter/friend)

Chronic overthinking/worry (inability to focus on the present, head always somewhere else, overthinking every situation)

Health decline (unhealthy eating, frequent illness, new or worsening medical conditions, chronic fatigue)

Cynicism (chronic negativity, poor mood)

Do you recognize any of these symptoms in yourself? Don’t worry- acknowledging you are experiencing burnout is the first step to turning things around and pointing yourself in a better direction!

If you’re a “push through the pain” kind of person you may be tempted to keep going at 100 miles per hour. But even if you feel like you are getting a lot done, research has found this is NOT the case. Lack of sleep, overworking, and failing to take care of yourself will result in POOR quality of work that will hurt you AND your business in the long run.

Think of it this way…if you were sawing down a tree in a forest, it would actually take you much longer to do it if you never took the time to sharpen the saw, versus if you took regular breaks to sharpen your equipment.

Sometimes, slowing down is IN YOU FAVOR and in the favor of your business!

Here are some tips for beating entrepreneurial burnout:

**Turn down clients that aren’t right for your business. This may seem completely counter-intuitive, but some clients just aren’t right for you. Either they don’t pay you enough for the time you invest in them, they aren’t reliable with fulfilling invoices, or they simply are not the type of client you want to work with.

**Outsource, outsource, outsource! You can either spend your time or your money! There are areas you should be spending your time on, and others that you would be better off spending your money and outsourcing. I imagine a huge reason you chose an entrepreneurial lifestyle was for time, freedom and flexibility. Well, if you’re spending 5 hours a day doing things that you could pay someone to do in 1 hour…you’re not getting time and freedom! Some people hesitate to outsource because their budget is tight. There are ways around this. You might consider finding students that are willing to work for experience, or other business owners you can trade with. There are always options.

**Create processes and systems that make you more efficient. What is taking up the most of your time? What could you do more effectively? Is there anything you can automate? Are you multitasking and being less effective versus focusing on one thing at a time? Your time is a valuable resource- treat it so!

**Take a vacation that is electronic-free (as much as possible). Go on a vacation! Even a short one. And have a no-electronics rule as much as possible. Get out of your head, breath, spend focused time with those that matter to you and remember why you do what you do.

If you truly take these techniques to heart, you can dramatically reduce the number of hours you spend working while also increasing your efficiency. You will be able to take weekends and holidays, you will be able to spend valuable (and uninterrupted) time with your loved ones, and you will avoid burnout.

If you need help automating systems in your business, I would love to help! Let’s chat and see what I can take off your shoulders, so you can spend more time in your passion zone!

Sign up for a 20 minute consult with me HERE.

Have an awesome week,

Robyn Bennett

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How to maximize your time

How to maximize your time

To continue last week’s theme on time management, I don’t know about you but at times it would appear that there are more things to do in our everyday lives (both working and personal). An important part of having a successful online business is to be able to be organized and know how to maximize your time efficiently. If you happen to be someone who is not skilled at this, then you will probably not be able to accomplish what you set out to do on most days. Read on to see how you can improve this skill and maybe learn how to be more efficient in your business and your day to day life.

What you need to do is to take a look at the big picture and decide what it is that you want to accomplish with each one of your tasks. This typically doesn’t take much time and as a result it saves you about a third of the time it usually takes, you should check last week’s blog post on this topic for more ideas.

Now that you have decided on your outcome, it helps to encourage you to stay on track and obtain your goal. As you are completing the task, think about how you would like to handle your next task. If you didn’t get your end result, figure out what went wrong and how you might be able to correct it so that you can get the outcome you wanted.

Another way you might use to keep your focus and better manage your time, is putting up a ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign. Only use this method when you totally cannot have any interruptions while working on a certain task. People need to respect that you cannot have any distractions unless it is a dire emergency.  It’s a healthy way to set boundaries as sometimes we let others take our time and nothing gets accomplished. When you get down to it, it’s your responsibility to set those boundaries and get the job done.

Another method is to use blocks of time to sort out and get your tasks completed. For example, you shouldn’t be checking emails and answering phone calls while you are trying to get tasks done. Rather than trying to multi-task and having so many tabs open on your computer such as emails, Skype, Social media etc., TURN THEM ALL OFF. This helps you to keep your mind focused on getting the job done. You’ll be thankful for it later. Remember that you can’t be available to everyone all the time (clients included) so don’t worry as most understand this since they too are running a business.

Sometimes it’s tempting to check your Facebook, Instagram & Google accounts when you hear that little ‘ding!’ and you realize that there is a message waiting for you, whether it’s from friends and family or your colleagues. But, you need to assign a time for you to reply to them. Of course, there are exceptions, such as something urgent relating to the job you are currently working on, where you have no choice but to answer. So take that time, but don’t let it roll over into something that’s going to lead you astray from your task.

You also need to realize that you may not complete every assignment every day. If you can’t complete all your tasks designated for that day, don’t worry. Look to see if you took on too much, or where there are too many distractions. Did you delegate tasks to your staff or did you decide to take it all on yourself? This helps you to see where you could have improved in your overall time management.

To summarize, be sure to always recognize what outcome you want and turn off all distractions. Then concentrate on your tasks and get in the habit of working in blocks of time. Don’t forget to delegate to your staff whatever keeps you from moving forward and after awhile you will know how to maximize your time and be better able to complete your tasks.

Robyn here! I’ve had a passion for technology for as long as I can remember. I bring a variety of skills and experience to any business, which have been gained with over 25 years of experience as an administrative and IT professional. Learn more…

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Time Management Tips

Time Management Tips

After starting my own online business I had realized that life can get pretty darn hectic especially when working at home.  I felt as though I was always busy and not getting anything accomplished.  I’d be up late at night and wake up early in the morning trying to get it all done.  There was no balance in my life and I’d end up exhausted and wondered were other entrepreneurs going through this too?

After doing research on the topic of time management, I started implementing what I had learned.  Below you will find some of the time management tips I have used and hopefully they will help you too.

  • Start logging (writing down) what you do in a day, starting with your ideas, conversations and activities.  By doing this you can start to see what you actually accomplish in a day, which also helps you recognize things that might be considered time wasters.
  • When setting up meetings you should assign a certain time of day (or a certain day of the week) for this purpose.  I have certain days of the week where I meet with regular clients and certain days where I meet with new/potential clients.
  • I like to set up an appointment with myself and I block out spaces of my time on my calendar so I can get important tasks done and I try to spend at least half of that time in doing things that will produce results for my business.  Though planning for interruptions should be considered too in case you have to re-prioritize your day.
  • What I prefer to do is schedule 30 mins at the beginning of each day to organize and adjust my calendar as needed.  Before anything else gets done I check and arrange my schedule for the day.  This helps me become a lot more productive.
  • Delegating has been the biggest time saver for me yet. Delegating less important tasks to employees allows me more time to work on my businesses priorities and get lots more accomplished.
  • Even though I recommend you schedule your day, don’t forget to leave some me-time in between.   Don’t forget to give yourself breaks (you can even schedule those in if you like).  For instance if you decided to block off 1 hour to write a blog post, don’t jump to the next task at hand once you’re done. You should take 10 to 15 minutes and move around, stretch, dance, do some jumping jacks or check on your loved ones and ask them how they’re doing.  You can even do nothing at all and just stop and smell the roses.

We’re living in a fast- paced world in the digital age, where it appears there’s more to do and less hours to do it in. By taking the time to stop and plan your day, at the end you will be able to see what tasks you were able to accomplish with ease, and others you didn’t, therefore, giving you the perfect indication of which tasks you should delegate.

Robyn here! I’ve had a passion for technology for as long as I can remember. I bring a variety of skills and experience to any business, which have been gained with over 25 years of experience as an administrative and IT professional. Learn more…

 

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