Ask Vasavi: Vasavi Kumar, a YFS Magazine small business advice columnist, shares tips on how to take action in their lives and businesses in unconventional and fearless ways.
Dear Vasavi: I just started my business over a year ago. I hear a lot about avoiding startup burnout but it seems out of reach. How can I improve my work-life balance and still be a productive entrepreneur with a full and “balanced” life?
Answer: Is work-life balance a myth? Absolutely not! But striving for the perfect balance may not be helpful.
As Danielle LaPorte put it, “The pursuit of balance makes us juggle. It puts us behind (always behind), makes us (feel) guilty, neglectful, imbalanced … You can never get it right. Striving for balance is a losing game.”
Instead of a perfect balance, think of life (and your business) as fluid. Your focus in your career and personal life should be on being happy and doing what makes you feel good. In both work and life, learn to delegate and outsource. Once you can do that, you can focus on what you are best at.
Here are seven quick tips to work and live smarter.
Tips for working smarter:
1. Do the hardest tasks first thing in the morning so you can get them out of your day.
2. Take breaks.
3. It’s all about priorities—focus on what’s important and get that done first.
4. If you want to be “balanced,” find what you are passionate about and do it!
Tips for living smarter:
1. Keep It Real: Take a hard look at your life. What are you spending time and energy on that just isn’tmaking you feel good? What can you delegate? What is eating up your energy?
2. Create It: Create room in your schedule for 15 minutes of you-time. Instead of “going, going, going” you need to stop and just be with yourself instead of burning the candle at both ends.
3. Laser In: When you do one thing, do it well. This means shutting off anything that will distract you. There is nothing wrong with being on Facebook or reading blogs, but the thing is, you will never feel like you have enough time if you are trying to do 10 things at once.
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Photo: Vasavi Kumar