When you’re a business of one, you’re responsible for everything. For some entrepreneurs and side-hustling creatives, the endless stream of ideas to implement and tasks on the to-do list not only fuel the fire behind a successful business — they also lead to burnout.
Sure you’ve read the posts about work-life balance. I’ve written several. You know to hire help when needed, such as an accountant, social media manager, transcriptionist or copyeditor.
Sometimes, that’s still not enough.
I was listening to a podcast several weeks ago and the lady being interviewed referred to the white space on her calendar. As you know, I’m a Google Calendar die-hard, and I was taken back with that comment.
There’s virtually no white space on my calendar.
Sure, I block meal breaks, yoga class and my work tasks. But, sometimes you just need time set aside without any plans. And no, it doesn’t mean using those blocks to catch up on last-minute edits or tossing a load of laundry in the washer.
Really, do nothing. Just be.
If you follow my personal lifestyle blog, you know I’m an avid lover of mindfulness, meditation, therapeutic yoga and focused breathing. I try to fill my “nothing” time (when I can get it) with these things.
The ideas that bubble up during moments of stillness are important and worthy of your attention. A recent 15-minute meditation set the foundation for a new focus for my lifestyle blog. I’ve been struggling with a shift in direction for months, and then, boom! It all fell into place once I quieted my ego and let my intuition speak up.
This intentional slow-down has actually ignited more energy, productivity and idea generation at my desk. There’s less slogging through tasks and more vibrancy behind the work I’m doing.
Why? My mind is racing every single day with pitch ideas, blog post topics, headline fragments, sources to contact, edits that need attention and so much more.
It’s part of being a one-person business.
Somewhere I read that you need to slow down to really get more done, and it’s true. I challenge you to trim down on the menial tasks that take up time, but don’t move you toward your goals.
Note how you feel personally and how your work satisfaction changes.
I’ve nearly cut out after-work mindless social media scrolling and unsubscribed to random email lists that I never read anyway. Just those two moves have freed up hours each week for me to be creative, read, get on my yoga mat or just do nothing.
Being self-employed is hard. We wear every hat, put out every fire and are solely responsible for moving the needle forward each week.
It’s equally exhausting and rewarding.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Your number one business asset is your health. Nurture, cherish and pamper yourself as much as possible so you can be the best business person possible.
During the month of January 2019, I’m purposely in low-power mode to focus on my physical and emotional health. I’m chatting about this on my lifestyle blog, Cupcakes and Yoga Pants. Please note, I may take longer to reply to online messages and comments while I funnel my energy into healing.
I’m still writing and hanging out online, just less.
Why? I want to strengthen the backbone of my business so I can crush my goals and tackle plans for the year ahead. Feel free to follow along on my journey on the blog’s Facebook page, my Twitter or the blog itself.
Until we chat again, be well and #choosehealthy. ~ Angela
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Note: This post was last updated on August 3, 2021.