A Life of a Small Business Owner…
The life of a small business owner or entrepreneur is, in so may ways, a life of freedom, of forging your own path in world free from the shackles of rules, bosses and the grinding 9 to 5 routine. However, for many of you and for me, it can also be exhausting, frightening, overwhelming and if you thought you were busy when you had an employed job….well, just don’t count up your hours worked!
Life as a small business owner is frankly gruelling at times.
So how come the dream of working for yourself sometimes seems to be a bonkers road in your life that maybe isn’t paying off? What about those days when you might think that this ‘doing it alone’ lark is for fools and that the the grass might be greener back over there with the same office, 9 to 5 routine and set lunch breaks.
This place is very easy to get to and many of us will revisit it in some part, again and again. Certainly this week has been a test of my juggling skills and I have repeatedly dropped balls all over the place. I am no different from many of you out there. I have family responsibilities (teenage boys to be absolutely specific – sporty ones…), I am a small business owner trying to pack a fortnight into a week and this week’s diary was a riot (not in a good way) of colour and crossings out.
Overwhelm and overwork are the very devil in small business ownership and are all too easily achievable. It is at exactly these moments it is really very worth taking some moments to stop in your tracks and ponder. Ponder why you chose to make such an amazing choice to run your own business. Think back to those dreams you had of a better life. Remember how you were going to be in control of your world and you were going to find happiness/riches/fulfilment on your own terms. Now be reminded that all those things haven’t gone away – all those things are still, and always will be, obtainable. The thing that gets in the way is our old self that imposes old working routines, negative and punitive work ethics, criticism and old school results driven targets.
Your old self needs to be kindly reminded to jog on.
We became self employed for a myriad of different reasons and all of them are deeply personal but most didn’t want overwhelm, uncontrolled stress and sleepless nights.
It is time to remember to work with flow.
‘Flow’ can take many forms for different people. And, before you ask, yes you do know what ‘flow’ is. It’s that feeling when everything happens easily. That day when everything went well – you got a great call; sat with a lovely client; received gorgeous feedback from a customer; managed a longer dog walk; found time to sit in the sun and all the other ‘flow’ signs. If your business is in ‘flow’ then the magic really happens….you attract more of the business you want as it glows like an inviting light.
Working in ‘flow’ is the exact magic ingredient you have as a small business owner and yet many of us forget we have it in our pocket. We won’t make our businesses successful if we stay overwhelmed, stressed out and functioning on caffeine and anxiety.
What will make our business successful for us is ‘flow’ working – something that I had to remind myself of loudly this week!
So get in touch with those dreams; remember that you don’t need to open your laptop at 7.30 every morning; remember you are the boss so give yourself a break; sit back and look at how far you have come; work on attracting the customers you want; remember that small business ownership is a life choice not a life sentence; put yourself first; make changes to your daily routine that puts some self care first.
I hope you are all enjoying a fabulous long weekend. If you are working, I hope it’s with customers your adore or is an exciting creative process. If you are not in the flow this weekend, I hope you take a peek at your diary and create some space to slow things down somewhere.
(This post comes to you as part of ‘A Life of a Small Business Owner” series. Look out for more posts in this series & please feel free to share your life with us too.)