Many entrepreneurs absolutely love their business and end up spending most of their waking hours working on their business, working in their business and talking about their business! While this is great on some levels, it can also strain – or even break – important relationships with friends and family. Ironically, many entrepreneurs got into business in the first place to create more freedom for these important relationships.
So, how do you solve this dilemma?
Here are a couple of thoughts on balancing life with your business:
- Embrace Productivity Enhancers: One way to create more “time” is to get more done during work time. Here are some tips we use:
- Use Multiple Computer Monitors: This is a huge time saver. The amount time lost each year by most single monitor users in open, closing and switching windows is at least one full workweek. Using 2 or 3 screens is a big productivity booster. A great app to turn your tablet into another screen for your laptop is Air Display: ($9.99)
- Only Return Phone Calls/E-mails 2-3 Times per Day: Another big productivity booster is turning off your e-mail/message notification on your computer and PDA and returning calls/e-mails at specific times each day. For example, you could return these between 11 am – 12 noon and 3 pm – 4 pm each day. When you are focusing on a task, each interruption costs you 10-15 minutes of productivity time
- Schedule a “Digital Detox”: To achieve enduring success as an entrepreneur, you must schedule downtime. One of our colleagues, who is a very successful 7-figure entrepreneur is fond of saying “the less I work, the more money I make.” Regularly taking time away from your business by completely unplugging (no iPhone, Blackberry, or e-mail) is crucial. Letting the constant buzz or “white noise” of business subside actually improves your ability to think strategically, as it allows your subconscious mind space and time to operate. Combining these strategic timeouts while spending time with family, friends and other important relationships is a powerful 1-2 punch. We recommend starting with one afternoon a week as soon as possible and expanding from there. Ultimately, you should aim for taking 1-2 weeks (or more) away from your business!
For more information on effective time management when you LOVE your business, be sure to listen to the August 2012 Virtual Jam Session replay.