People who work 9-5 actually get the day off at 5 pm. They can enjoy the rest of the day pursuing their chores, spending time with family, exercising, socializing or whatever they need in order to create a balance between their work life and personal life. An entrepreneur however does not necessarily get off work at 5 pm; since they are the owner themselves and not an employee.
Work-life balance is the phenomenon of being able to create a balance between time and effort spent pursuing career ambitions (work) and other aspects including personal health, personal up-keep, personal hobbies, and personal relationships (life).
Entrepreneurs find it harder to bring harmony in their lives by creating a stable work-life balance. Since they are the owners of the business, and have more at stake, they feel it is their responsibility to exert greater effort and spend a greater amount of time executing business tasks. Entrepreneurs are on the clock 24/7; they feel the need to be the first to arrive and last to go. They want to be the first to hear about the latest in the industry and therefore are always online.
For an entrepreneur, the series of tasks never end. To accomplish these tasks, they ignore spending time with friends and family, neglect their health, and miss out on taking a break. As an entrepreneur, what you need to remember is that you cannot keep operating on an empty tank; you need to make a stop to get re-fuelled. To have a healthy and long lasting career as an entrepreneur, it is essential that you create work-life balance in your life.
- Therefore, the first thing you need to do, as an entrepreneur is to let go of the fear that if you do not work every minute of the day, your business will collapse. This first step will relieve the constant pressure you feel of being on the go. It will also reduce feelings of guilt as you try to take a break from work and spend some time having fun.
- The second thing you need to do is set clear boundaries with your clients. If it is time for you to sleep, then snooze the minutes away and stop worrying about replying to your client’s request for cost estimates. Your clients will also value you taking time off. Remember, the more room you give to your work to occupy your personal life the more it will take over your entire life. Keep client expectations to a realistic level.
- The third thing you need to do in order to be able to have a good work-life balance is to schedule your life just like you schedule your work. So consciously schedule vacation time, tea or coffee time – plan a day of fun with your children and mark it on your calendar. Not only will doing this give you something to look forward to but also motivate you to finish your work on time so you are available for your scheduled time for fun.
For having a good work-life balance, the next thing you need to remember is to focus being ‘in the moment’. If you are at work, do not get distracted by things going on in your personal life; similarly while you are on your break do not worry about things back at the business, files stacking up on your table, unread emails, etc. Give it your one hundred percent, whether you are at work or out for fun.
Delegating tasks at work and at home can also be a great way to relieve some stress and be able to create work-life balance. Hire a maid to clean the home, or ask your spouse to pick up the groceries or laundry or help you with the kids’ homework, etc. Let your accountant calculate the budget estimates or let your manager prepare the contract document for the client.
Paying attention to your health and personal life is important for having a successful career as an entrepreneur. To avoid burnout, it is essential to be able to create work-life balance because if you do not take care of yourself, you may not be in a condition to take care of your business.