How to Balance Business & Pleasure to Meet Your Monthly Goals
Guest blog post by Vee Cecilis, a wellness coach, personal trainer, and bootcamp instructor. She is passionate about studying and sharing her findings in wellness through her blog.
For many business owners, there is an obvious need to strike a balance between business and pleasure. However, work-life balance is never easy to achieve. If you’re trying to find a way to achieve your business goals while keeping a small shred of your free time, these suggestions will help.
Become Diligent about Your Time Management
Whether we like to admit it or not, we spend a great deal of time doing activities that are not top priorities while we are working. Being diligent about your time management and ensuring that you are using all your time at work and at home as efficiently as possible is a must if you are going to achieve your goals.
One strategy is to prioritize your goals and set deadlines for them. Then, work backwards in your calendar each month to set daily tasks to complete to meet those goals on time. This process will help you decide where your priorities lie and streamline your process for achieving the goals that are most important to you and your business. Then, put reminders and appointments on your smartphone and mobile calendar to help you stay on track. If it helps, start with the smaller picture by simply having a plan for each day. Use the first 30 minutes of the day to map out how your day will be spent and prioritize your tasks and goals.
Limit Distractions at Work and Home
Along the same lines as being diligent about your time management is limiting distractions at work. You may not realize that there are so many things distracting you throughout your day that they are taking precious time from your productive work. For example, you may be tempted to check your messages, emails, texts, and social media accounts throughout the day, but if those activities are not helping you achieve your goals, you need to eliminate them from the workday. Consider putting your phone in your desk drawer after you turn off all your notifications. Or, allow yourself a designated time to check email. Spend a week writing down everything you do during the day to get a true picture as to how you spend your time. Be honest with what you write down. You may find that you need to limit your breaks or shut your office door so you aren’t tempted to chat.
Surprisingly, home can be a distraction even when you aren’t there. Have you ever caught yourself thinking about the pile of dishes and laundry that is waiting to be done, or the disaster area that has become your living room? Even your health could be a distraction. The large portion sizes and junk food you come home to each day after work are zapping your energy. The good news is that you can improve your home for stress-free living, which will carry over into your work life.
Stop Working when the Designated Time Comes
It is virtually impossible for business owners to stop working, but it is a must when it comes to achieving some sort of happy medium. Not only do your friends and family expect you to be available to spend time with them, but they also expect you to put down your phone and draw a line between work and home when it is family time. Remember that work deadline we mentioned earlier? Hold yourself accountable to it.
Close the door to your home office and take advantage of automated social media so that your business thrives even while you set your focus elsewhere. This sort of automation can be used for those weekends when you really need to switch gears to a family or friend setting, or for those times when you manage to take a vacation or holiday. Set a friendly reply for email and messages alerting clients as to when you will be back in the office. If you have the luxury of employees, designate a team member to handle any work emergencies, or consider taking turns being on call for the weekend.
Honesty is the best policy when it comes to balancing business and pleasure. If you cannot meet a goal, admit it to yourself and analyze the reason for the failure and recognize the progress you have made. Otherwise, you may spend time stewing over the challenges you had instead of enjoying your loved ones or time away. Be honest with what you can and can’t handle. Learn to say ‘no’ when needed to avoid stress and an unintentional failure.
Your time is in high demand, but you are in control of how and when you spend it. If you absolutely need to spend some time completing a report or working on financials when you are supposed to be off the clock, let your family or friends know the situation so they do not feel insulted if you are a little distracted or have to duck out for an hour. However, once the task is complete avoid the temptation to get ahead and put the work away.
You can balance business and pleasure if you manage your time more effectively, limit your distractions, respect the boundaries between work and home, and are honest with everyone about your responsibilities as a successful business owner. With a little practice and adjustment, you’ll find the work-life sweet spot.