Operating a small business is a mixed blessing for many people. Although it’s exciting to be in control of a growing company, it can be extremely stressful at the same time. This can lead feeling completely overwhelmed. Operating in this mode for too long can cause burnout and make you give up on your dreams of small business ownership altogether. The good news is that doesn’t have to happen if you can learn the fine art of balance.
Know Your Limits
It’s hard to say no to new business, especially in the early years of managing your own company. You may feel that the opportunity will never come again if you don’t seize it right now. However, taking on more than you can reasonably handle will accelerate the process of stress and burnout. It’s important to learn how much work you can comfortably complete in a day without sacrificing sleep, eating regular meals, or time to unwind with family and friends. When you feel yourself going past that limit, vow to finish your current project but then not take on so much in the future.
Get Comfortable Delegating Work to Others
If you have employees, they should be able to manage for a day or two without you. The danger of making yourself so indispensable is that you won’t be able to take a day off without getting calls, emails, or texts from frantic employees who don’t know how to function in your absence. Remember that delegating administrative and less urgent tasks to your staff frees up your time to grow the business. Employees should be happy to pitch in since they won’t have any job security without continued business growth.
Understand Where Your Time Really Goes
It’s common for business owners to underestimate how much time each of their tasks actually takes. For example, you might not think you’re spending a lot of time on simple data entry when it’s taking up two hours every day. It would be much better to hire someone to do this for you, even if it’s only on a part-time or temporary basis. Tracking how much time it takes you to complete every task for a week can be a real eye-opener. If you run into a task you can’t delegate that proves very time-consuming, seek advice from other business owners on how you can become more efficient.
Learn to Relax and Unplug
Technology has made it possible to remain connected to your business 24 hours a day. This can be useful if you’re dealing with a true crisis. It can also contribute to feeling overwhelmed if you find that you just can’t stop checking business email while you’re at home or you accept business calls at all hours. Your business is a big part of your life, but it’s not your entire life. You will start to resent it if you don’t learn to separate it from your personal life.
These are just four tips that can help you retain control of your business without feeling overwhelmed. At Business Partner Alliance, we would like to help with just this issue. We provide targeted coaching, consulting and business advisory services to help small and medium sized business owners achieve new heights. We put our passion and experience to work to help business people achieve their goals. Let’s meet for coffee to see how we can work together.