Entrepreneurs are not lazy, they work hard. There is always so much to do, which for most of us leads to a sense of overwhelm. It happens to all of us. Things will always take longer than you think or want them to. I’ve never, in all my 13 years of coaching had a client say, “things are moving much faster than I thought they would.”
Overwhelm will happen, sooner or later, expect it to happen and have a plan for when it does.
Have a written down plan
This is the most important thing you can do to combat overwhelm and it’s surprising how few people actually keep an active up to date written plan.
Knowing which activities are a priority is the first step to getting things done. Use the plan you created above and determine which actions will result in money coming in your door the fastest. I use a 1 – 2 – 3 rating system. Priority 1, needs to be done today or this week. Priority 2 and 3 can be scheduled for a later time.
One technique I couldn’t live without is calendaring. My process is start with a written down plan, particularly for my marketing activities. I then take each of my to do’s and actually put them on my calendar. I map out blocks of time for “creation” work, undisturbed time to write or design. For example, I blog every week so each Monday I block out 2 hours to write and publish my blog posts. Scheduling time on your calendar makes a world of difference in effective productivity. I used to make myself crazy worrying about all the things I wasn’t getting done. Now that I put everything on my calendar, I no longer fret about not getting things done, I know they are on the calendar for a later time.
Start with the hire team exercise and use it to determine who you should hire first. There are plenty of low cost resources available to help you build your team. Fiverr.com, indeed.com, craigslist are just a few places to find quality help on a budget.
Once I’ve created my plan, I share it with my mastermind team or an accountability partner. Having someone holding you accountable to what you say you will do really helps make sure the work actually gets done. And having that kind of support really comes in handy for the times you need a little morale boost or a swift kick in the butt.
Take time during your day to relax, be quiet, reflect, meditate, whatever works for you. Slow down, take some deep breaths, be thankful for everything you have.
I struggle to sit for any length of time so I do this goofy thing which helps me push through. Let’s say it’s Monday and I’ve just sat down to work on my blog post. Distractions begin to call my name. Instead of giving into distraction, I tell myself, at the end of the 2 hours you get a reward. For me it often takes the form of a brief walk in the woods with my dogs. For you it could mean checking email, calling a friend, playing a video game, having a cup of tea. Whatever works for you.
You need balance
Take time for you. While it’s important to tend to the needs of your business, schedule “me” time. Spend time with the people you care about most, do the things that give you joy. A burnt out business owner is a poor business owner.