Have you found a way to balance running your business with your personal life? A recent survey’s results were telling: 78% of women entrepreneurs believe they’ve found a good work-life balance – as compared with 85% of men who said the same, according to a Bank of America study of more than 1,000 small business owners.
Some of the disparity undoubtedly stems from expectations about traditional gender roles, but beyond that, there are ways women business owners can narrow that gap and achieve a better work-life balance. Here are three of the most effective tips:
So often, we hear advice telling us to separate our work and home lives – not to bring work home, or to confine work-related activities to a certain room of the house. But as entrepreneurs, that can be next to impossible. Running a business isn’t a 9-to-5 job, and if you’re passionate about what you do, you’re always thinking about it. In fact, for women entrepreneurs, 61% say they work more than 40 hours each week. Trying to create artificial boundaries between your work and your personal life can cause more frustration on both sides.
Instead, why not incorporate your personal life into your work life as fully as possible? Involve your partner or children in your day-to-day work. Enlist the help of friends and family when you’re hard at work solving a problem. If you hit a slump during the day, go take care of a few personal chores if you can, to free up time that evening to approach your work refreshed. Looking at your life as a whole with various parts interwoven evenly throughout, rather than trying to chop it equally in half, will make balance much more achievable.
2. Make ‘Me Time’ a priority
Whether you’re pulling an all-nighter to meet a tight deadline for a client or rushing around taking care of your family, stress hits entrepreneurs from all sides. That’s why it’s vital to disconnect and take some time for yourself every so often. Do something that takes you out of the daily grind – watch a movie or head to a spa, go hiking or spend a few hours volunteering at a pet shelter. Changing your surroundings and your focus for even a few hours will allow you to recharge and regain a sense of balance, so you can jump back into your day-to-day with new energy and enthusiasm.
3. Go with the flow
Ironically enough, accepting there won’t always be a balance between your work and home life can bring a sense of peace. From day to day and from week to week, there will be times when you have to be hyper-focused on your business, and times when you’ll need to be more present for your family and friends. That’s just the nature of life, and deciding to go with the flow and do what’s necessary in the moment, without guilt, will make for a much calmer, more balanced attitude toward your life.
Finding a good work-life balance can be tricky, but interestingly enough, it can be done most successfully in round-about ways like the above, rather than pursuing it head-on. Try these approaches and see what kind of a difference they make in the way you feel about your schedule.
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About Shama Hyder
Shama Hyder is a visionary strategist for the digital age, a web and TV personality, a bestselling author, and the award-winning CEO of The Marketing Zen Group–a global online marketing and digital PR company. She has aptly been dubbed the “Zen Master of Marketing” by Entrepreneur Magazine and the “Millennial Master of the Universe” by FastCompany.com. Shama has also been honored at both the White House and The United Nations as one of the top 100 young entrepreneurs in the country. Shama has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the prestigious Technology Titan Emerging Company CEO award. She was named one of the “Top 25 Entrepreneurs under 25” by Business Week in 2009, one of the “Top 30 Under 30” Entrepreneurs in America in 2014 by Inc. Magazine, and to the Forbes “30 Under 30” list of movers and shakers for 2015.LinkedIn named Hyder one of its “Top Voices” in Marketing & Social Media. Her web show Shama TV was awarded the “Hermes Gold award for Educational Programming in Electronic Media” and most recently she was awarded the “Excellence in Social Media Entrepreneurship” award for 2016 by Anokhi Media.
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