We’ve all been there. You finally take that much-needed vacation, only to experience constant interruptions from staff or clients.
Which is SO frustrating because the whole point of being on vacation is to be able to leave your business behind.
And, taking time off is important. Getting away from your business prevents burnout and inspires new directions to take your business or new initiatives you can adopt.
The good news is that owning a small business doesn’t have to prevent you from taking a vacation and enjoying time away from your small business.
Schedule it! One of my very first steps is to schedule my vacations and downtime when quarterly or yearly planning. I know that if I don’t pencil it in, it’s not likely to happen. It gives me that sense of excitement,...
You're not alone.
The number one sacrifice small business owners make each year is not taking a vacation.
More than half (60%) only take one vacation per year; nearly one quarter (23%) take fewer than two vacation days annually.
When they do go on vacation, more than 75% still work.
No wonder small business owners are burning out.
Time for rest, recuperation, and pleasure isn't on the calendar.
The first question I ask when starting the annual planning process with a client is:
“What vacations or time off do you have planned for your year?”
If it’s a new client, I am usually met with wide eyes and silence, followed by the myriad of reasons why time away hasn’t been a priority.
My seasoned clients know that in order...
I used to believe that the secret to having more time for myself was to “just be more organized".
Scheduling to the minute meant that I could stuff my “miles-long to-do list” into each day.
Of course, it didn’t work.
I would end up exhausted at the end of the day, not to mention feeling demoralized by the fact that I had only been able to check a few items off my list.
Many of us can relate to trying to do "all the things" and working around the clock.
And, I’ll bet you’ll agree that a 24/7 schedule is not enjoyable or sustainable!
The big issue with being “always” on is that it keeps our nervous system in a state of fight or flight. (More about that here...)
Running from one thing to another, with our “gas pedal floored” leads us to burnout.
Time and time again I see women (myself included) overestimating our capacity.
It’s time to stop ...
I will joyfully admit, I am one of the nerdy folks who gets unusually excited about planning.
I love, love, love to plan. Crafting a well-defined map of how I am going to get from A to Z (with all the roads in between), is incredibly inspiring, and lights me up in ways I can’t even describe.
I know not everyone feels this way, but more often than not, I find my clients leaning into my enthusiasm for planning.
What's important for all of us to remember, however, is that even the best-laid plans are subject to change.
I think it's the nature of life and business.
So, what are we to do when life gets in the way and our plans get derailed?
My recent experience with the month-long flu was a good reminder of how we can experience a big interruption or setback, and still achieve or make progress toward our goals.
I was excited to finish the year strong and had my Q4 plans dialed in. I was particularly excited as this quarter's...
And, for many small business owners (my past self included) that number is far greater. The lines between business and life have become so blurred that work can encompass most of our time.
It’s our first thought when we wake, and extends all the way to the late-night problem-solving sessions we entertain before sleep.
Many of us have come to accept the “cult of overworking”. We have succumbed to the pressure of being “always-on” and wear our “busyness” as a badge of honor.
We glorify work as if productivity and wealth are the only measures of success.
Yet, stories from the finish line, say otherwise. One common regret from the dying in their last days is, “I wish I hadn’t worked so much”, and would have spent more time on meaningful activities and relationships.
Contrary to standard belief, more is not...
I used to be one of those people who would constantly complain about being “SO busy”. I had dozens of excuses about why there wasn’t enough time to: work out, spend more time with my husband or girlfriends, take time off, make healthy meals for myself, etc. All the activities that I really wanted to be doing, but convinced myself that there wasn’t the “time to make it happen”.
I know many of you can relate.
And, truth be told, I was completely guilty of prioritizing “busy work”. I would fill up my days and weeks with low-value activities, instead of the things that actually create more freedom in my business or joy in my personal life.
For me, I could easily waste a good 2 - 3 hours of my day (both work & at home) by:
Fall has the energy of “action” for me. My kiddo is back in school, which generally means I have more time to devote to work, projects, etc. I like to vacation in the summer, so by the time fall rolls around, I can feel a certain pressure or “urgency” around my work, especially as I am gearing up for the final quarter.
It's an easy time to slip back into bad habits. For me, that looks like taking on too much or not planning my wellness and connection activities first. And, of course, that leads to me feeling stressed.
When I am working in a state of “fight or flight”, my decision-making is poor, I can’t communicate effectively, and I’m generally “re-acting” to the world around me, instead of “responding”. Not good…
However, if I stay intentional about my self-care and keep my practices super simple, I am able to handle the stress of the “busy” times. To show up as my...
Business owners have a serious obsession with productivity.
And, with good reason. Generally, more productivity translates to a better bottom line.
I have several tricks up my sleeve for creating more efficiency and productivity throughout my workday. These strategies have allowed me to accomplish more without increasing my to-do list.
But, I return again and again to my #1 productivity booster, which I refer to as the 3R’s:
Rest. Relax. Refuel.
Before I created YBBL, I was in desperate need of a change. I was deep into the cycle of “feeling like I always needed to be working”. Somehow I feared that my business would “fall apart” if I stepped away.
I was working from the moment I woke up until I finally “crashed” at night. And, it wasn't even effective. Working all the time was making me less productive, less profitable, and generally miserable.
We all have times in our businesses that need more effort....
“So, what exactly does a business coach do?”
I get this question a lot -- usually from irritated business owners who've hired support but aren't receiving the solutions they need.
And, I understand the confusion—coaching and consulting are often used interchangeably. But never fear reader! Today we will clear up any confusion and clarify the differences between the two. This will help you avoid the headache of expectations that don’t pan out and frustration from money spent on the wrong solutions.
Meet Heather from Sweet Solutions Bakery. She received her first Easy-Bake Oven at five and has been obsessed with cakes & confections ever since. Six months ago, she made her dreams a reality and opened Sweet Solutions.
Heather is thrilled that she can make a living creating her whimsical cakes and treats. Yet, owning a business has been challenging. At times, she feels like she is...