I’m going to be totally honest with you. Sometimes, it’s freaking hard to run a business.
This morning, I woke up and I thought to myself, how I would love to play hooky from my work. Just “call in sick” and spend the day on the couch, or go for a long walk, or just do nothing. The little devil on my shoulder whispers: If you feel that way, just do it.
My problem is I can’t slack off
My work ethic stops me from goofing off whenever I feel the urge. Entrepreneur or not, I approach my business with all the dedication and seriousness I did when I had to go into an office and report to someone else.
That’s not to say I haven’t developed a schedule that builds in time to exercise, take my dog out for a walk and get some errands done. I have. Freedom and flexibility are two fundamental reasons I started my own gig. But my goal is to have a business, not a hobby.
So, how does someone like me avoid burning out?
Eating right, exercising and getting outside help a lot. But that’s not enough.
Sometimes the problem isn’t me … it’s my business. It’s about how it runs and how these things affect me.
So I perform the following diagnostic on my business. I encourage you to do this too. You may be surprised by what you discover. Here’s how …
1. Start with a strategy
You’ll waste a ton of time and energy if you haven’t mapped out a master plan of where you want your business to go and how you want it to operate. This is where I start with all my clients. I ask them these questions: “If you could wave a magic wand and turn your business into whatever you want it to be … what would it look like? What are the things you need to do to get there?” Write down your answers. Make a list of the tasks that need to be done to move you toward the business you envision.
Now it’s time to make some serious decisions. Look at your task list and circle the things that can ONLY be done by you. These might include writing new web content, servicing your clients or going to networking events. You may be inclined to think it ALL has to be done by you. But that thinking is what got you into this situation. So loosen the strings and be brutally honest.
3. Automate + Systematize + Delegate
This is the holy trinity of business efficiency. Go back to your task list and beside each of the remaining items consider the following:
- Could this be automated by using technology? If yes, write A beside it.
- Do I need to create a system around this process? If yes, write S beside it.
- Is this something I could get someone else to do? If yes, write D beside it.
The patterns will lead you to the light
Your task list may look like a jumble of circles and letters, but it’s really your roadmap away from burnout.
If you look for the patterns you’ll see there are a variety of things that are taking up your time and energy, and preventing you from doing the things you love in your business.
When so much of your attention is spent on routine tasks that can be automated, systematized and delegated, it’s inevitable that your business will exhaust, rather than excite, you. Tweet that!
Turn that frown upside down
If you started your day the way I started mine, it’s time for a change. Doing this simple, yet powerful exercise will bring incredible clarity.
If you feel unsure of what you can automate, systematize or delegate in your business, I’m here to help. I’d like to invite you to a complimentary Burnout Buster Power Hour with me and we’ll figure it out together. This is my gift to you. No charge. No strings. No pressure.
Now, I have to get back to work!