A long weekend has just passed and for us small business owners, chances are you did at least some work instead of spending time with friends, family or simply relaxing. But having a work life balance is so important.
Define What Work Life Balance Means
Before you can have a work life balance, you need to define what it means to you.
It could mean having dinner with your family every night, taking every weekend off, going to bed before 10 pm every night or simply having the flexibility in your workload to spend a Thursday night binge-watching the newest show on Netflix.
Work life balance will likely be different for you than it is for me, but before you can achieve it, you need to define it.
Set Work Hours
To have a proper work life balance, it’ll help to set specific work hours. These don’t have to be 9 to 5, but you do want to have some hours that are definitely not work hours.
During these hours, you can do whatever you want but aim to not answer emails, take meetings or anything else specifically work-related that has to do with client or customer interaction, otherwise you’ll unset any boundaries you had set up.
Whatever you doing during this time, it’s important that you relax… at least a bit!
Plan Ahead and Schedule Vacation Days
One of the keys of actually being able to have vacation days is planning ahead and scheduling them as you would anything else. Vacation is key to having a work life balance, you’re not a machine and you definitely shouldn’t treat yourself like one.
Give yourself a break!
This includes putting your vacation days in your calendar and telling your clients or customers ahead of time that you’re not going to be available. In some cases, this might even include getting coverage if your business operations requires it.
And, most importantly, it means not deciding you “can’t take the time” when the day comes around—you can. Everything will be okay if you skip a day or two. Especially if you’ve planned it.
Schedule Your Important Personal Activities
Much like scheduling your vacation, you need to schedule important personal activities or chances are you won’t actually let yourself get them done.
I, personally, schedule a movie-going date with me, myself and I two Sunday’s a most (last Sunday I checked out Aladdin, loved it!)—but you can do anything!
Whatever your thing is though, you need to make sure you actually schedule it or chances are you’ll never it get it done. Then you need to make sure to actually do it, not blow it off because you have better things to do.
A tip I’ve gotten used to doing is actually booking tickets for theatre performances, movies or other tickets. As much as I’m dedicated to my work, I will not miss something I already paid for. That’s just poor money management.
Why You Need a Work Life Balance
As a small business owner, whether you’re working alone or with a small team, can really take a toll. You need time to recharge and relax so that you’re on top of your game when it comes to making good business decisions.
If you don’t take the time to give yourself a break, you’ll end up burning out and that won’t be good for you or your business. So do yourself a favor and take the night off, you’ll thank me later.
How do you manage your work life balance?
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Tae started out as a journalist before following the money into the corporate world. But it turns out that the grass isn’t always greener and now you can find her spending most of her time writing about all the things she loves. Namely, money, travel and business with a hefty dose of self-deprecating humor. She is a podcast fanatic, blogging aficionado and loves to find new ways to turn passions into cold hard cash!