There are lots of resources out there for managing your time better, and I don’t want to duplicate those. But I do want to encourage you to do something other than work on your business for a change.
What I see a lot of business owners doing is working very long hours to keep up, becoming very tired and then going home and only having the energy to slump in front of the TV.
Why not do something with your leisure time which is rejuvenating? Go out with friends; have some human contact and some interesting conversations.
When you’ve done your work for the day, why not go home and read one of the many business books which can inspire you? You’ll get ideas and a new lease of life for your business. Here’s a start – you can read my Sweetspot Pricing book to inspire you to set a better price, improve your marketing so that more people will pay you more money, and make you laugh. All at the same time.
Honestly, it’s the only book about pricing for small business which will make you laugh out loud.
When you’re tired
Sometimes all we have the energy for is to go home and watch some crap TV. That’s okay for a while. I’m not one of those superhumans who want to shame everyone else by boasting that they never watch TV. But, it’s good to notice if those times that all you can do is watch Netflix rubbish is getting to be a habit, rather than a naughty treat when you’re knackered and can’t do anything else
And don’t get me started on the perils of watching The Apprentice. Even the UK version.
Treat yourself to some proper relaxation, so you’ll bounce back in the morning.
I asked some friends what they do to relax, and they suggested, a good novel, Star Trek, folding towels, jumping up and down on a mini trampoline. I guess that sums up my friends, but why not have a go?
Don’t see it as a chore
Instead of seeing attendance at networking events in the evening as a necessary evil, why not see it as part of your social life? Get involved in running one of the events, or get active in politics or your kid’s school.
Most business owners think that they don’t have time to do these things because they want to prioritise their business and don’t feel they have the energy for anything else. My experience is that you get a lot back from being involved in something outside of your business.
Adam Grant researched this much more rigorously and in his fascinating book Give and Take; he reports that people who volunteer for 100 hours in a year are more likely to live longer. Adam Grant says that this 100-hour rule of volunteering is “maximally energising and minimally draining.”
The successful business owners I know are people who are very active in their communities. Anything which widens your social circle is good networking; you never know what will come from your involvement with your local Amnesty group, or book group.
Feel free to build a business case to justify being more involved with your community. I’ve seen lots of my mentoring clients get exciting new projects through involvement with their kids’ schools, or a regular gym class.
And I got a whole load of new business by volunteering my time to help run the Brighton Chamber of Commerce.
At the very least, you’ll get a fresh approach which you’ll be able to take back to your business.
Friends and family
If you have a partner or family, then you’ll probably be focused on making money in your business to provide for them financially. Which is great – it gives you an enormous incentive to develop your business.
But, what about the time you spend with them? What about that quality time where you go out and do interesting and exciting things with your kids? If you did more of that, is it possible that you might feel more motivated in your business and see the point of all that hard work?
Taking this to the next level
Just spending time with your family is a good thing in itself. But what if you could also make sure that the whole family is getting some rejuvenation?
We’re familiar with thinking of running a business as a potential stress trigger for ourselves. But there is a growing awareness of stress and mental health challenges for children and young people, so it could be good to think of ways to spend time with your family which rejuvenates everyone. That doesn’t have to be a full-on mindfulness weekend for the family. It could just be making sure that you take a walk up Firle Beacon at the weekend. I might see you there; it’s a lovely view
See this as investment
See all the wonderful things you do outside of work as an investment in yourself and your business and your business will thank you for it.
Do you want more ideas for building a successful company?
I’ve written dozens of ideas and how to guides here at the Joy of Business to help you to build your business.
Some of them are in my Secrets of Business Success downloadable guide – see the bottom of this page for how to get your hands on this.
Here are some more articles you’ll find invaluable for creating the kind of business you want to be known for:
How you can get a grip on that success income target and how to get there.
The 10 Minute team meeting – How communication is important in your business.
Read about some great examples of meeting customers’ motivations.
Photo credits to Markus Spiske, Sam Austin and Kelvin Delvecchio on Unsplash, plus Nick Rowland from Flickr