Life is about balance, but in today’s ever-changing society, women have to balance more and more. While it may seem impossible, here are a few tips to keep you upright on the wire while at home and at work.
Carve out a time each day for you. Maybe it sounds cliché, but you really can’t pour from an empty cup. Don’t feel guilty about taking some time to do something you love.
“When we learn to be gentle with ourselves, this is truly taking care,” advises Tiny Buddha.
You’re only human. You need your downtime as much as the next person, and you should never feel sorry about allowing yourself time to relax. It could be as simple as reading a chapter of your favourite book, taking a 30-minute jog, or stepping outside while the kids are distracted. The point is to pull away from your motherly/wifely duties to just be you. You won’t recharge and refresh otherwise.
Give the phone the boot once in a while. Unplug. It’s that simple. Society has become dependent upon devices, and sometimes we need to let go of technology in order to focus on the things that truly matter. Technology has made it easier to run our businesses (more on that later) but also means that we are expected to be at beck and call 24/7. Turn off your devices on Saturday morning. Enjoy a family breakfast and take off your boss hat long enough to remember that your priority is your family. You may believe that working around the clock is best, but your kids will only remember you not being there.
Streamline processes that don’t require your constant attention. We’ve already mentioned technology as a distraction. However, limiting your use of technology can also free up time at work and make things much easier on you. It takes a bit of prep work and foresight, but the most important step you can take as a business owner is to create a website that works while you play. When you plan your business website, consider how your customer would view it by taking notes of the most commonly posed queries regarding your company. Product specifications, address, customer reviews, FAQs, warranty information, and costs are all items you can address on your site that will automate part of your operational processes.
Implement responsible hiring practices. This doesn’t simply mean to drug test and background check your employees. Take the time to hire people who will commit to you and your business and treat them well. Happy employees mean happy customers, which means more business. The right employees will not only help your company grow, but will become experts in the industry and can take over many time-consuming responsibilities from you.
At Home and at Work
Let go. It is not possible to give 100% of yourself to everything. Even if you’re a business owner who works from home, you might not be around when your child falls off his or her bike the first time. Likewise, being a mom means you may miss an important meeting for kindergarten graduation. Don’t let these things bother you. Balancing responsibilities only goes so far; you have to learn to live with the things you can’t do.
Stop striving for perfection 100% of the time. Be the best you can be in all you love, but stop pushing yourself to do things you don’t. For example, if you don’t like to bake, let your family eat bakery cookies instead of begrudgingly decorating two dozen homemade treats. (No one will think less of you!) The same applies at work. If you hate crunching numbers, hire an accountant to take on the financial tasks that make your stomach churn. Utilize the resources around you every day to help you enjoy your 24 hours.
In summary, focus on you, unplug sometimes, stop worrying that you aren’t good enough, and let technology (and your employees) work for you.
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