Owning your own business is the American dream. You studied hard, worked even harder, and finally, you managed to start your own business. You’ve joined an elite group that took that dream and made it real.
That doesn’t mean you can sit back and relax. Whether you have a home-based business or a traditional brick-and-mortar one, you need to pay close attention to all aspects of your business. That means you can face a lot of stress over it all. Instead of letting it get to you, read on to discover how to avoid the dreaded burnout from being a small business owner.
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Why Burnout Is A Problem
What can lead to burnout? As Inc.com explains, there are several things that can stress out a business owner. You typically will be working harder than ever before, and all those “overtime” hours can stress you out. All that work can lead to eating poorly, not getting enough sleep, and skipping exercise. And although your business life has direction, it’s easy to forget you need that in your overall life as well.
Is getting stressed out a big problem? This is not something you can just power through. Entrepreneur.com shows that feeling burned out can lead to feeling like you have no energy. You can even start to have panic attacks and feeling like your life is beyond your control. Besides the damage this can do to your home life, imagine how it affects your small business.
Realistic Goals & Other Tips
With stress being a particular problem for business owners, how can you cope? One way to improve your chances is to set some realistic goals for both your business and personal life. Business Insider notes that you should make sure that you have a good understanding of what you can and cannot accomplish. Setting a goal you never reach is obviously bad, but making goals way too easy won’t help you feel better either.
You also need to take small breaks throughout your workday. Yes, the proverbial buck stops with you. But you cannot work that hard without getting stressed and burned out. The key to making these work is to avoid tasks during these breaks. Don’t use them as an excuse to get more done. Go for a walk, stare out the window, or just lie down for five minutes every so often to give your mind a break from stress.
Taking some breaks can be harder when your small business is run out of your home. It’s all too easy to forget you’re off work and start checking emails and working on orders. That’s why Redfin recommends that you be careful about your work hours. Some people work best in the morning, while others do better in the afternoon. Experiment to find what works for you, then use the opposite time to rest and play.
Of course, there will be times when you absolutely must work. Do what you need to do, but remember that being a business owner is stressful enough on the best of days. You have to set limits on your time and stick to them whenever possible. If your work-life balance gets out of order, you are facing burnout.
Don’t Let Stress Take Over
As a business owner, it seems like there aren’t enough hours in the day. But if you get too stressed out, your efficiency will disappear. Worse, you might end up resenting your choice to start a business. That’s why you have to worry about your stress level, make some realistic goals, and manage your work hours effectively. This way, you can be there when your business needs you the most.
Shameless Plug: Using business solutions which help you do more with less effort is also a big part of managing stress. That’s what we’re all about at Artichoke.
Article written by Jason Lewis