You wake up before the alarm goes off, well before you are fully rested. You need sleep but you need to move your next project forward, more. The excitement of another day is like Christmas morning for a four-year-old and the morning after for a strung out drunk all rolled into one. Congratulations, you are a business owner!
When you started your business, you probably thought that money was your most restricted resource. Business owners have a way of being resourceful, though. After five years of running your own business, you’ve done at least 100 things you had never done before. DIY-ing through the growing years is a business building strategy that works for many and demonstrates that entrepreneurial spirit unleashed.
Business Ownership Dreams
You imagined your life as a successful business owner long before you launched your business. Of course, you knew there would be hard work and long hours, but you envisioned a certain lifestyle.
You imagined your life as a successful business owner long before you launched your business. Of course, you knew there would be hard work and long hours, but you envisioned a certain lifestyle. Owners take time off in the middle of the day to take their kids to the beach. They have that relaxed smile that comes from not punching a time-clock. In your dreams, your business-owner-self was well-rested and had time to go to the gym. There were summer vacations and lazy days spent with the family while running your business from home. The internet makes it easy to work from anywhere, which is why you launched your business online.
Squaring it up with Reality
Now, your successful business takes all of your time. You don’t dare stop because the business will stop growing. You have commitments to customers and employees, and you don’t want to let them down. You are running a business, but it has not reached your dream of full potential, yet.
But, if you are using all of your time to keep your business going, how will you get it to grow? When do you get to be that dream-like business owner who enjoys her life? You love running your business, but what about family, friends, and recreation?
Budgeting Your Time
You may have mastered financial budgeting, but it is time to learn how to budget your time. You can always earn more money, but there will never be more than 24 hours in a day. Time is the most restricted resource in your business.
Here are some ideas for freeing up more of your time:
Delegate — It can be hard to let go of control over even the smallest details, but you cannot do everything yourself. Identify repetitive tasks, create a procedure for completing them, then teach that procedure to someone else.
Hire — Staffing up can be a scary prospect, but you need more hands to do more work. Anyone working more than 40 hours in a week is doing more than one job, including you. List out the workload, divide up the hours, and figure out how many people you need to run your business, so everyone can take time off to relax and renew.
Schedule — Keep a calendar for each day and stick to it. Block out a certain part of your day for creative work, maybe early in the morning or in the evening when your business is closed. Devote time to your customers, your staff, and yourself each day.
Work Smart — Identify the most time-consuming tasks in your business and figure out how to expedite them. Most business owners work efficiently for short bursts of time. Anything that takes an hour or more should be divided into smaller tasks or outsourced.
Part of running a successful business is living a fulfilled life, and that means getting enough sleep. Treat yourself to a more reasonable and balanced schedule of work and recreation. Your business will thrive in the long run.