If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that work doesn’t have to look the way it’s looked for decades. People value flexible work situations and the perfect work life balance now more than ever.
As an entrepreneur or business owner, flexibility is a double-edged sword. You started your business to work on your own terms and follow your passions. However, many entrepreneurs find that the lines between home and work can easily get blurred.
But work life balance matters, not just to your physical and mental health, but also to your business. Any venture that is going to succeed needs a solid foundation. When you own your own business, that solid foundation is you.
It can be hard to imagine prioritizing yourself over your business, but taking care of yourself will keep you sharp, focused, and productive, allowing you to work more efficiently and enjoy the life you’ve created.
Read on to discover simple ways to implement a healthy work life balance.
Work Life Balance: Invest in Your Health
Busy business owners might find it difficult to take care of their bodies. There’s always one more thing to do (and never enough hours to get it all done). It’s easy to push your wellness to the backburner.
However, not taking care of your body has consequences. Without proper diet and exercise, you’re at higher risk for long-term health issues, including heart problems and high cholesterol. You’re also likely to have higher stress or suffer from mental health issues.
It’s important to eat a balanced diet full of nutrients and exercise regularly. Prioritizing your health will pay off for your business—the right diet and fitness plan can keep your immune system firing on all cylinders so your body can fight off bacteria and illnesses.
Sleep Matters in Work Life Balance
Slipping into unhealthy sleep patterns is another temptation for entrepreneurs. Staying up late to wrap up projects can seem like a good idea, until the alarm clock buzzes in the morning.
The truth is that a lack of sleep doesn’t just leave you feeling miserable or needing an extra cup of coffee to get going—it actually drastically impacts your productivity. Committing to getting 6-8 hours of sleep can help you feel happier and less stressed in your personal life and get more done for your business—it’s a win/win.
The quality of sleep is just as important as the amount of hours. To ensure a good night’s sleep, set a regular bedtime and stick to it. Turn off screens at least an hour before bed, and do something to help you unwind, such as reading or taking a bath.
Work Life Balance and Mental Health
Your physical health is important, but your mental health should also be a priority.
A lack of work life balance leads to a negative cycle: you neglect your mental health in favor of work, leaving you less satisfied and more likely to be anxious and depressed. In turn, you are more likely to experience burnout or struggle at work.
Find a healthy outlet that helps your mental health—deep breathing, meditation, journaling, going for walks—whatever leaves you feeling calm and relaxed. Check in on your mental health frequently and make sure that you are setting yourself up for success.
Work Life Balance and Finding Other Passions
Finding interests outside of the office can be an important part of taking care of yourself. Your business is your priority—and there’s nothing wrong with that. You will want to consistently devote time and energy to work.
However, it’s important to find other outlets for your time and energy to avoid getting burned out. Find a sport or hobby that interests you and set aside time each week to pursue it. Taking time to focus on other passions will leave you feeling refreshed when you come back to work.
Set Boundaries for The Perfect Work Life Balance
If you find yourself sinking into work zone too often, it might be time to set some healthy boundaries around work. This could look like putting aside work by dinner time, taking consistent days off, or going out to lunch one weekday every week.
Think about how to draw healthy boundaries that will let you spend time with family, friends, or even yourself—you want to run your business; not have it run you.
Work Life Balance Means Taking Breaks and Rewarding Yourself
Your business is important, but it isn’t everything. Don’t be afraid to take breaks. You need time to recover after intense periods at work (just like your muscles need time to recover after an intense workout).
Take regular vacations or time off. Allow yourself to step away from your business sometimes. When you give yourself breaks, you’ll be more motivated to work hard when you return.
Most importantly, never forget to appreciate yourself and your accomplishments. Instead of looking at what you haven’t done, reflect on what you have accomplished, and give yourself praise for doing so. Reward yourself for your accomplishments, and allow them to help push you through your next goal.
Lastly, business support through a virtual office can take away a lot of the stress that is related to running your own business. Learn how a virtual office provider can strengthen your business and give you the time you need to succeed.