How to achieve work and life balance, especially as a female entrepreneur, is not an easy task. I've had my fair share of burnouts and abandoning my work because I didn't achieve the work and life balance I needed.
Entrepreneurs are often risk-takers, and entrepreneurs can be found in just about any industry.
There are many benefits to being an entrepreneur and limitations that come with owning your own business. One of the most important aspects of running one's own company is achieving work and life balance.
This article will focus on achieving this goal as an entrepreneur by taking time for oneself and delegating tasks to others when needed.
What is work-life balance, and why should you care about it?
Work-life balance is NOT working 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, with the occasional weekend. Work-life balance is when you can separate your personal life from your professional life.
This will allow you to work harder on the things that matter most in your business while also taking time off whenever needed. Being able to achieve work and life balance will also decrease employee turnover rates which could ultimately save money in the long run.
How to create a schedule that works?
The first step is to figure out your priorities and how much time is really feasible for you to spend on those priorities each day and each week.
Once you know how much time you have to devote to your business, you can figure out how to best divide that time.
Some entrepreneurs opt to keep a strict schedule, so there is no room for slacking off, whereas others work best when they sleep in and spend the latter parts of their week enjoying downtime.
How to achieve work and life balance as an entrepreneur (16 Ways)
1. Sync your Calendars
I recommend adding your personal commitments to the same calendar as your work responsibilities and vice-versa.
By doing this, you won’t forget your commitments, which will make you more productive throughout the day.
Treat each calendar event equally, and be sure to force yourself to step away from your work desk when it’s time for your social or personal commitments.
2. Block Off Your Time Wisely
Do you have a big project that you need to complete or a task that requires lots of attention and time? Add it to your calendar as a chunk of time or in blocks as much as possible ignore any distractions that might prop up within that time.
By doing this, you will have a specific set period of time allocated, forcing you to focus.
Even if you don’t have a single, focused task to work on, working continuously for a set amount of time can help you stay on track.
It’s quite common that people don’t work as much as they think because of constant interruptions or multitasking.
3. Get Rid of the alerts.
A phone buzzing or making noises in the background is a huge distraction. Try putting your phone in your desk drawer, leave it in your handbag or better yet, turn it off.
You don’t need to see each update on your phone as it happens, do you? If you need to check your phone, then do it at specific set times in the day so you can stay focused and be more productive.
The same applies when you are social too! If you are with family or friends, get rid of your phone and hide it or turn it on silent so you can be present in the moment and spend quality time.
4. Add the Small Stuff
Everyone loves checking items off a list. It gives you a sense of achievement and accomplishment. Start adding every task you need to tackle (EVERYTHING! The smallest and the biggest) into your daily agenda.
Once you start ticking the smaller things off the list, it will give you momentum to keep going through to the larger, more daunting tasks.
If it’s something big you need to do, then break it up into smaller tasks so you can see everything that you need to get done! This type of planning helps free up your mind to focus on right now instead of obsessing over your pending to-do’s.
5. Work Out When You Can
It’s often said that health and wealth go together. Taking care of yourself daily demonstrates self-respect, and in turn, others will respect you too.
Take the time to have a little bit of extra movement each day to get your heart rate elevated. It doesn’t have to be a full-on exercise routine.
Start with just a few star jumps in the bathroom when you have a toilet break, or perhaps some squats when you are in a meeting room waiting for your next appointment.
Just having that extra movement will give you a little energy boost in the day.
6. Movements In The Mornings
OK, so you get the point now that doing just a little bit of exercise is the key to achieving a work-life balance. But have you tried doing some movement in the mornings?
Getting active earlier provides energy and endorphins before heading into your office job, and it ensures that you won’t have an extra burst of energy just before bedtime.
Even a light morning walk will do wonders for your mood and your energy levels.
7. Make The Most Of Your Movements
Given you work in the office, it’s no surprise your movement levels aren’t high. It’s now time to start making the most of your day in getting in as much movement as possible, so you don’t need to work out for hours before or after work!
Here are some ideas to take advantage of dormant time in the day:
• Take regular breaks to stand up and stretch or walk around for 2-5 minutes to get the blood flowing
• Sit with a good posture as often as possible
• Invest in a pedometer or Fitbit to track your movement each day and aim for 8000 steps a day minimum
• Keep a set of comfortable walking shoes at your desk and slip them on when you feel like a walk
• Put an alarm in your work calendar to get up and move or do a repetition of squats every 30 minutes
When it comes to staying fit, you need to know your limits and go with what feels right. For some, working out in a gym is needed for some good stress relief; for others, it’s quick 2-5minute workouts spread through the day or a fast walk.
Importantly, do what feels okay to you; you will be well on your way to achieving a work-life balance.
8. Set Your Goals
Your work-life balance goals are much like financial management and planning. Just like money, you have a limited about of time, so it’s important to know your values, set your goals, create a budget and stick to it.
Start setting your personal life goals and rank them just as high as you would for your work tasks.
Maybe you’ve always wanted to start a new hobby or do something you’ve never done before. Set your personal goals by adding one NEW personal goal a week (maybe more if you can manage it).
9. Manage Your Expectations
When you are at work, you set time frames for responses and deadlines for completing a task, so it’s just as important to do this in your personal life to avoid disappointment and alleviate some levels of misunderstandings with your loved ones.
Start setting boundaries with people in your life (work and personal) about when you are available, and the time it might take to hear back from you.
If you tell your loved ones that you are busy at work and it may take 3-4 hours to respond to their text message, it sets a boundary for expectations which will help in your search for work-life balance.
10. It’s Ok To Say No
Sometimes achieving your ideal work-life balance means that you may have to say “no”. If an opportunity, activity or request comes up and it doesn’t fit into your schedule, then it’s ok to say “no!”.
We often agree to do things because we feel that we need to, but deep down, we don’t want to. Start looking at each opportunity and request and check if this fits within your personal or work goals and values.
If it doesn’t, say no. If it does, then go for it. Setting these values for everything you do is key to finding your balance.
11. Prepare For The Day Ahead
Preparing for tomorrow by organising the night before is important. Before you go to bed, start getting your day ready for tomorrow by making your lunch, getting your exercise clothes ready or pre-making your breakfast.
Being prepared helps you get out the door quickly. When you start creating order and organisation for the next day, studies have found that it helps you fall asleep quickly because you aren’t stressed about what’s to come tomorrow.
12. Be Bed Ready
Start implementing a routine at night to help you fall asleep fast and have a deeper and more quality night sleep.
Some ideas for you would be to set your alarm beside your bed for 7-9 hours before you need to wake up so that you know you need to get to bed, relax and snooze away! It’s a good idea to turn off electronic devices with a screen at least 1 hour before bed if you can.
A fantastic tip is to find what helps you wind down and take your mind off work and other stresses. All you need is to create a routine that works for you to get sleepy at least 30 minutes before bedtime to fall into a deep quality sleep.
13. Accept that you can't do it all yourself.
As a business owner, you might believe that there is no one else who could complete the task as well as you or that you are irreplaceable.
This very mindset often pushes us over the edge, and we end up working long hours and weekends to get caught up on everything.
14. Delegate tasks to your employees or hire help.
As an entrepreneur, you most likely wear multiple hats and do many different jobs within the company; this includes everything from accounting to customer service and anything in between!
This might sound like a great idea until all of those hats start making your head spin, and you end up not knowing what is going on anymore!
It is important to hire driven and proactive employees, allowing you to remain in control of your business while still being able to take some time away. Another benefit of delegating tasks is saving money.
Rather than hiring one full-time employee, you might be able to hire three part-time employees instead, which will cut your labour costs and allow for more work to be completed with the same amount of employees.
15. Take time off at regular intervals.
We all know that we need a good night's rest to stay healthy and productive, but this is sometimes easier said than done when you're busy running your own company!
Taking an hour or two away from work each day to relax will not only help you enjoy your time off but will also recharge you enough for when you return to work.
Taking a vacation every so often is also important for all entrepreneurs because it can be hard to shut off from business while working on holidays and weekends, worrying about what might happen at home.
16. Avoid freelancing on your freelancing business.
Last but not least, it is important to avoid doing extra work outside of your company. This means avoiding working on the weekends if you are a 9-5 employee or yourself for long hours if you run a one-person shop.
You might be tempted to take on some extra tasks to make more money, but it is important to remember that working for yourself does not mean you get to work all of the time.
How to achieve work and life balance by delegating tasks
As a business owner, you are not only a boss but also a leader. One of the keys to achieving work-life balance as an entrepreneur is understanding that your employees or colleagues are people.
Just because you are in charge does not mean that you have to do it all yourself. Delegating tasks is the best way to achieve work-life balance for an entrepreneur because it provides many benefits.
First off, delegating tasks allows employees to achieve self-worth and feel more confident about their ability to get things done without always having to depend on you.
Secondly, delegating tasks allows everyone to achieve a work-life balance because employees who are constantly stressed out from too much work and not enough time will ultimately leave a company.
The most important of all tips: achieving work and life balance as an entrepreneur is by taking care of yourself!
5 Ways to delegate tasks
There are effective ways to delegate tasks to employees.
1. Create a Job description
One of the most effective ways is by creating a job description that outlines exactly what your employee needs to achieve for their title.
Not only does this help you stay on track with your own duties, but it helps ensure that your staff are being productive and are working on things they enjoy doing.
This method ensures that your employees achieve work and life balance by allowing them to take on tasks they are both skilled at, passionate about and interested in.
2. Delegate tasks throughout the day
Giving your team members short items to achieve throughout their day can help achieve work and life balance because they will not be overloaded but will achieve small tasks that can be done quickly.
You can give them tasks throughout their day or week to achieve work and life balance by working on different things each day.
3. Give employees deadlines
When you delegate tasks, always give your employees a deadline.
This will help achieve work and life balance because you give them limits to work with instead of just expecting them to get the job done without any specific time frame.
You will achieve work and life balance by giving your employees deadlines by ensuring tasks are finished on time.
4. Give them an outline.
To achieve work and life balance, give your employees the task at hand and outline what needs to be done.
For example, instead of just telling an employee to write a report, tell them what the report needs to achieve and write the background for them.
This will help achieve work and life balance because you are not burdening your employee with writing an entire report but giving them an outline that they need to follow.
5. Performance Reviews
Another way is through performance reviews. By regularly checking in with employees to see how things are going, you can understand what areas they need improvement in or what areas they excel at.
You can then use this information to assign them tasks that will work well and achieve your business goals.
This method allows employees to achieve work and life balance, as it shows trust from management through the regular feedback provided during performance reviews.
Final thoughts on how to achieve work and life balance
No matter what your role is in the company, you have to achieve work and life balance.
As a leader of your organisation, you must provide time for yourself so that you can achieve more at work and enjoy every day outside of the office.
It may take some trial and error before finding an effective routine or style of delegation.
Still, eventually, this will allow you to achieve work and life balance as an entrepreneur! Hope you found this article helpful.
Feel free to share this article and if you have any questions or comments, leave them down below.