Life can be chaotic, we’re busy people leading busy lives and it all has the potential to become stressful after a while. Running your own business comes with its own stress points too. However, how you manage that stress and the various scenarios that take place, can play a big part of whether that stress will bring you down / create burnout, or make you stronger.
As a business owner, there are things that will keep you up at night and play on your mind, and it can be hard to switch off, keeping work and pleasure separate. So, how can you manage the stress and the constant flow of interruptions? The quicker you can learn to manage stress levels as a business owner, the better your health and business success will be.
Prioritise your time
It’s easy to get snowed under with the pressures of work, to take on everything yourself and to find yourself in the middle of high workloads without a hole to breathe from. And the way to get through this is to learn to prioritise. Without schedules or a plan, it can be easy for tasks to merge into one and to forget what is most important, leaving half-done jobs left on the table. (You may find our social media checklist beneficial)
When you get to this point, it’s time to take some ‘me time’. Burnout is a real issue and more and more business owners are facing this scenario way too often. Me time is important to take stock, refocus, rethink priorities and what matters most.
The art of delegation can be a small business owners’ best friend. It’s not a case of ‘giving up’, it’s a part of growing a business and expanding and taking on the responsibilities that you need and want to, finding other people to help support you as you grow. This takes away the stress from you, and relieves you from certain responsibilities that can free up your time for what you need to do, including taking some personal time for you and your family.
Use tools to help your business
Gone are the days where everything has to be done manually. There are many tools out there which can help with the automation of your business, tools that can make your life much easier and manageable when it comes through getting through daily tasks.
Apps, software, online-programmes, equipment etc, there any so many tools that can help you manage your business, taking the stress away from you as a solo business owner. Yes it can take a trial and error period to realise what works for you, but when you find the ones that do work, you’ll never look back!
Make a list of what tasks you need help with and research what tools could possibly help the health of you and your business. Ask other business owners what they use and what they could recommend. You could try social media groups to ask for advice and to discover new tools that already work for other business owners that you could try. In turn for finding new ways to manage your business, you can manage your stress levels.
Listen to your body
Our bodies are great at indicating when they need to stop or slow down and there comes to a point where we need to listen to those signs. If you need a break, take one. If your body needs to stop and get some fresh air, a chance to refresh and take stock – give your body what it needs.
Your body knows when it’s tired and we lose concentration when our body gets to the point that it feels it’s losing. That’s when it is time to stop – listen to your body!
A rest will give your body time to refresh and breathe. You may not be one for stopping but taking that time to refresh can far out way the time it takes to rectify any errors – it’s worth taking the time.
“Rest when you’re weary. Refresh and renew yourself, your body, your mind, your spirit. Then get back to work.” ~ Ralph Marston
Learn to recognise what works well
When we’re feeling stressed, it can be easy to focus on the negative things that are happening rather that what is working well. Recognising achievements and positive outcomes can have a positive effect in our mindset. Stress comes when we feel we are not coping or are not achieving what we set out to achieve. When we switch the mindset to praise ourselves for the good and the positive, our bodies realise that we are in control of what outcomes we produce and are more inclined to think positivity and feel happier about what’s happening around us.
We can also learn from the good things too and by focusing on these things, we keep our minds active, stay vigilant and break the cycle of negative thinking.
Let go of what is not working
You may have been doing something for months or even years, but if it’s not working – ditch it! There is absolutely no point in carrying on with something that does not work for you. This can also be said for things that are not working in the practicalities of your business and personal life. Find a routine that works for you, whether that be a change in the way you manage your daily activities or the way you organise your projects. When something works, it gives you a better sense of achievement and you’re likely to feel happier in yourself and more productive.
Managing stress levels as a small business owner can be tricky but it’s achievable. Stress can get you down, it can even result in burnout but before you get to that level, do something about it. Talk to the people around you, find networking groups for support, discover different places to work or meet new faces. There are a number of ways in which you can help stress levels stay on par.
As we’ve mentioned above, delegation and outsourcing is an effective way to manage your workload which results in less stress for you. If marketing plays a big part in this and you’ve not got the time to get out there and tell people about your business, perhaps it’s time to outsource. We’re here and happy to help at the click of button, even if it’s just a sounding board to see what options are available for you. Get in touch and let’s talk.