When I started my blog, I had no idea it would evolve into the business and passion it has become. I also never imagine the time it would take or how draining something that was built from passion would be. I mean they say, “Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life…” I’m going to go ahead and say, FALSE. More like, “Do what you love, and you will probably work even harder to get it done.” When you’re working a 9-5, working all night on your side hustle and trying to maintain the other aspects of your life, it’s easy to forget to take care of yourself.
I know that we all have to find our way and that we all have different needs but I want to share some tips for taking care of yourself when you are trying to build a business.
Be Super Focused
This can be difficult when you have an entrepreneurial brain. The more entrepreneurs I get to know the more I see cases of entrepreneur’s brain. It’s easy there are so many things to do and try, so many platforms to use, services to offer, people to connect with, the list goes on and on. One of the best things you can do for your business, personal wellbeing, relationships and life is to try your best to be super focused on what you’re doing when you’re doing it. I know at any given second I have ten things popping into my head. Try your best to focus on what you’re doing when you’re doing it. If you’re working on your newsletter, then close those ten other tabs and just work on that. If you are having a girls night out, don’t answer emails just because your friends are all checking Facebook. (Tell them to get off the phone and enjoy the awesomeness that is you!)
Yes, I am telling you to live in the moment and practice mindfulness.
Keep a notepad in your purse, a memo file on your phone or a Google Doc open behind your work so if you have one of those great ideas or remember something you need to do, you can jot it down quickly and then get back to what you’re working on. Being able to separate the parts of your life and just focus on the task or event happening at the moment will make your work sessions more productive, your relaxation time more relaxing and your life just overall more awesome.
People may think it’s crazy, but I plan days off from my day job just to reset. I do it before I feel like I’m about to snap. If you have vacation days, use them! I’ve scheduled a Monday or Friday off like three months ahead of time to have a day off of my day job, work on my business, go grocery shopping, do laundry or just watch freaking Lifetime movies (P.S. The husband did it.) I plan at least one night during the week where I just relax and read or watch tv when I get home. This is one of the best ways to avoid burnout, maintain your passion and take care of you!
The same way I plan my breaks I plan my work. Each night before I go to bed I get a sticky note and decide three things I want to get done the next day and stick to tasks that are actually achievable based on time and ability. If it’s a Tuesday and I won’t be able to get to work until 7 pm on my business tasks, my list isn’t going to say: Build Website, Write four blog posts, Comment on 25 blogs. A realistic list would be: Finish editing the new post, Create graphics for social media, Set up a landing page for next week’s webinar.
If I am working on an individual project, I gather whatever I’ll need to get it done in one setting without having to search for stuff. When I sit down to work, I find that I am more likely to finish something if I know what it is I want to finish.
By far my favorite new habit this year is my nightly practice of journaling. It started off as trying to incorporate gratitude and the practice of writing my goals down often into my schedule. Each night I write down one thing I’m grateful for, one goal I have, one thing I accomplished that day and one thing I want to get done tomorrow (this can be from your list of three tasks mentioned above). I’ve taken it a step further and have just started writing the first three things as gratitude statements.
Gratitude: I’m grateful that my sister and I are close now.
Goal: I’m grateful for the opportunity to do a webinar with Mariah Coz.
Accomplishment: I’m grateful I got today’s post out and shared.
Goal for tomorrow: Email Jane my ideas for the guest post swap.
While I haven’t accomplished the goal of doing a webinar with Mariah Coz, this is an example of putting it out into the universe, while also reminding myself it’s one of the things I want to do. It’s been proven that people who look at their goals often or write them down often are more likely to accomplish them than someone who might just write them down once and not look at them on a regular basis.
Have a Support System
It’s so important to find your tribe when you are trying to build your space on the big crazy internet. There will always be a new platform update, a new social media platform, etc. so it’s great when you have a support system that gets what you are doing. This can come in many different forms, maybe you are in a Facebook group, maybe you have an accountability partner who you work with and send daily texts, you could join a small mastermind group where you meet up with 2-3 other business owners and video chat or in person on a regular basis, or you may just have those friends who you met in a Twitter chat and reach out to when you have a question or just need to vent. You may have an amazing family or group of friends in your day to day life, but the online business world is complex and can be a lonely place without the right people to have your back.
Nurture All of You
My blog allows me to nurture my creativity. Yes, it can be draining and time-consuming, but if I didn’t get the incredible feelings that come with expressing myself, helping others and building connections, I would close up shop tomorrow. But like you I am a complicated person with needs. I try my best to eat a healthy diet of foods that nourish my body and tickle my palate. I go to the gym to stay active and remain in shape. I go to therapy to nurture my emotions. I meditate and practice visualization to remain in touch with my feelings, desires, and goals.
Whatever your needs are, take care of them. It’s easy to pour as much as we can into our business and then without noticing using what’s ever left to nurture those around us, but you have to remember to take care of yourself. It goes back to kids on an airplane; you need to put your oxygen mask on before trying to help anyone else put on theirs.
Ask For Help
Sometimes we all need a little help; maybe we are trying to learn a new system? Maybe we hate technical copywriting. Maybe we need help narrowing down our focus or goal. Whatever it is asking for help and recognizing areas where you need it are imperative for growing your business. This is why I am such a huge fan of online education. We all have something special to teach and share with the world. Think about it like this, when you’re car shopping the sales person shows you the features, they point out how to move your seat to be comfortable or how to add your favorite radio stations to the presets. When you decided at 18 you wanted to be an accountant you didn’t just say, “I’m good at numbers,” and start taking people’s money, you went to school to get an education. It’s the same with things in business, if you need a tutorial, a coach or even coaching one on one services, that is okay. These things are an investment in your business and inevitably in yourself as well.
I am not ashamed to hop in a Facebook group and ask my fellow business bosses how to create a particular type of form on ConvertKit. I’m not scared to email a fellow blogger to ask who she filed her taxes with? If you can find someone or something to save you time and make things easier why wouldn’t you?
I want to invite you to join my new course The Balance Side Hustle. If you feel like balancing your side hustle, full-time job and life are becoming too much; I’m here to help. I’ve been there! You feel like you can’t ever catch up and no matter what you do there is still so much more to be done. You haven’t seen your friends in what feels like months. When you do make time for something fun, you spend the whole time feeling guilty and dreading the work you left waiting at home. You started your side hustle because you had a passion or a dream and now you feel like you spend more and more time on the admin tasks than the part you’re passionate about. What you need is a system that fits your life.
With this month-long self-paced program, you will break down your side hustle goals and purpose as well as pick out your balance points. What are balance points? The parts of your life that you decide are a priority and want to balance.
Once your balance points are defined, you will be given training on keeping yourself in check and on schedule, as well as saying, “No,” to others.
Finally, you will be given training on creating systems that fit your business and life to let you focus on what matters most to you while growing your side hustle. This program is great if you don’t have the income yet or time to do regular full-time business coaching. You’re ready to take your side hustle to a better and less chaotic level. You might still be busy, but you will be spending more time on the stuff that earns you money and feeds your passion. To learn more about the program check it out here and save your seat. Get early bird pricing now. The course will never be this low again!