Work-life Balance: Rediscover Your Vision For Your Business

As a small business owner, you know what making sacrifices is like. You may have been a lone wolf and are used to taking on every task and responsibility. Initially, this mentality is fine (and often necessary), but continuing this way will be your downfall. It would be best to have a work-life balance set up not to get burned out with your business.

How many times have you said, “it will all be worth it when…”? If you’re like the thousands of other tradies grafting to make ends meet, then it’s a few too many times.

What if that time doesn’t come? What if you’re slogging away every day, missing out on life, all for it to end up okay? You didn’t start your business to become a slave to it; if you continue on this path, that’s exactly what you’ll become.

You had a vision when you started on your entrepreneurial journey of what you wanted life to be like, and in the hustle of business, you’ve let it slip out of your focus. It’s very easy to think you’ll be better tomorrow or when this next big job is done, but I can promise you, there will never be a perfect time.

Reignite your fire by rediscovering your vision for your business and building a healthy work/life balance so that you can enjoy the journey AND the destination.

Why is it important to keep a work-life balance between work and family?

If you’re working too much and spending too little time with your loved ones, you’ll get burned out – and so will they! You’ll have less energy for work, making it more likely that you’ll lose clients or customers because of your lack of enthusiasm. And if your family doesn’t see how important they are to you (or if they don’t know what’s going on at work), it’s harder for them to be supportive of what you do and why it matters.

When we’re neglecting our personal lives, we tend to get less done professionally because we don’t care as much anymore—and this is true even when something happens at home that should make us want to work harder! We’ve got too much going on in our heads: thoughts of our families, worries about their well-being if something goes wrong… It can be overwhelming when we’re trying to focus on doing good work!

On the flip side, spending too much time away from your business is only stalling (or even reversing) your growth. Your business is like a child, and it’s your job to nurture it by giving it the dedication it deserves.

What is a work-life balance between?

First, we have to accept that a work/life balance isn’t about keeping the scales 50/50. It’s impossible! There will be times when your business needs more time, and that’s OK. Just make sure you’re giving your time to the RIGHT things. 

Staying late to work on the tools because you don’t have enough tradies is not a good use of your time, and it’s unnecessarily eating into the ‘life’ portion of your work/life balance. 

However, working a one-off Saturday to prepare a sales talk because you’ve had a huge potential contract come across your desk (that fits your ideal job at the ideal margin to your ideal client) is the right reason to skew your balance in favour of work. In the same vein, taking a Friday off to play golf or get a head start on a family trip is also okay. 

A healthy work/life balance is about equity, not equality. Feed them both the time and effort they need to thrive.

How to achieve a work-life balance between work and life when you’re self-employed?

The simple answer is – you prioritise it. You need to commit to your choices and protect them because no one will do that for you.

But as with many things in business, that’s easier said than done. So, here are 3 business tips that will give you more stability in your business, making it easier to prioritise time away:

Business Owner Time – 

Business owner time is non-negotiable. This is when you’re going to complete all the important tasks that can only be done by you. These tasks will keep your business moving forward on an upward trajectory. 

Unfortunately, it’s the important tasks that get pushed aside to make way for the urgent tasks. There will always be urgent tasks, and they can’t get in the way of your progress.

To understand how to carve out your business owner time and stick to it, check out our blog ‘How To Build The Business Muscle

Team Meetings – 

Communication is key in business. If you don’t want to be called on to a job because of an error or have an unhappy customer on the phone because your team didn’t do what they said they were going to do, you need to look at how you’re communicating with your team. 

You probably fall into at least one of two categories, if not both:

  1. You regularly reschedule team meetings or cut them short because urgent tasks come up.
  2. You have meetings, but they’re not efficient, productive, or useful.

Many business problems could have been prevented if they were discussed and followed up beforehand. If you’re clever about your meetings, you can get more done in less time. Find out how to ‘Work Smarter with Better Team Meetings’.

Focus on the ‘3 Ideals’ –

The ‘3 Ideals’ should inform every decision you make in your business! They are – ideal job, at the ideal margin, to the ideal customer. 

If you can get to a place where 100% of your books are filled with those jobs, you’ll be golden. You’ll have a dependable, steady stream of A-grade clients who bring you more A-grade clients, and you’ll have the cash in the bank to grow your business to the heights you dreamed of when you started it.

In the early days, this will be difficult because it means turning down jobs. But these aren’t the jobs you want. They’re more likely to cause you grief and bring in little to no profit, so you’re no better off than you were before. It’s a difficult but necessary mindset shift that you need to make. 

Learn more about setting up and attracting your ‘3 Ideals’ in ‘How To Get Out Of The Pricing Wars For Good’.

Rediscover your vision – what’s on your bucket list?

We all need something to get out of bed for in the morning, and a hard day’s work with little reward is not it! You started your business because you wanted more; I want you to remind yourself what that is.

Spend three minutes writing your bucket list for your life and your business. It could be going on a dream family vacation, hitting that million-dollar mark in your business, saving for your kid’s future, opening new locations, etc. Think BIG! 

Don’t forget why you’re putting yourself through the wringer. Your business can’t come at the expense of your life, it should enhance it. Take the time out so you can come back refreshed, energised, and ready to tick those goals off your bucket list.

Don’t go it alone – get free advice

If you’re a lone wolf business owner, find a pack of like-minded tradies in our free Trades and Construction Mastermind Facebook Group. We share advice and coach tradies in our weekly live sessions to spark change in your business. Join us today!

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