Have you ever felt like all you do is work or think about work? Have you started to base your value of self worth through your business achievements. In today’s blog post I’m going to provide you with my three top tips so you can create healthy boundaries in your small business and entrepreneur lifestyle. It’s difficult juggling everything, specially with the festive season coming upon us. Why not listen to this full blog post on the podcast? Do your online shopping whilst making healthy boundaries! Killing two bird with one stone! – episode 010 on >>Apple Podcast<< or >>Spotify<<
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Thank you, Olivia x
Stop Evaluating your self worth based on your business wins and failures.
I think all solopreneurs and entrepreneurs, can fall into the trap of evaluating their own self worth based on how their business is doing. And trust me I’ve definitely experience this first hand! It not surprising how consumed we are within our business we practically birth them from envision, building, growing and working it everyday. Because we do start to put our businesses first and our self second it slowly start to have this negative impact on your personal life. I’m also going to show you how and why you should be forming healthy boundaries for you businesses social media accounts. As well as stop you from being a workaholic in your own home! All with the goal to stop your personal life begging negatively impact by your growing business anymore.
How To Priorities Yourself Again!
Like I previous mention earlier all of us solopreneurs can all agree on is that we are very involved and consumed within our businesses, some people go as far referring theirs as their babies. And just like when becoming a mother hood, some women experiences they loss a part of them self’s and attached their identity to the child. Well it might sound weird but actually I see a link between that and with personal brands, within personal branding we don’t separate our own identity from our business, we are our business and we actually using our self-identity to promote and sell to others. This can make it especially hard for solopreneurs to separate them selves from it because you need one for the other. But if we continue to base our identity directly with the health of our business it can start to negatively impact your life. We start to evaluate and measure our self worth and value on the goals and accomplishments our businesses achieve , we need to start implementing healthy boundaries like yesterday!
I’ve experienced it first hand with a super slow growing business, I’ve felt my confidence knocked constantly and weirdly feel this pressure to prove myself to other people. I also without realising it put my business before my own needs and wants. When we start to do this your telling your self that your business health is more important than your own and that’s not ok. You might of just had a ah ha moment and realised that you’ve felt or experience all or some of the things and that’s the first step noticing it, now we need to take action to make it right again. So even if you’re a personal brand the first step is realising that yes you have a business but you are not just your business. What I mean by this is yes your business is your face, your brand is mostly likely registered under your name. But your business is not the whole of your identity, meaning the outcomes that are usually our of controls such as failures and success should be the only factor to define who you are. It’s so important to set healthy boundaries from the beginning so you don’t fall into this horrible mindset and unhealthy cycle.
Healthy boundaries to putting yourself first again | Morning Routine
So how do I start putting myself first and start create an identity that isn’t consumed by my business? Well I’ve created a few steps for anyone who wants to start implementing this in their day please do it’s helped me so much. So firstly I changed my morning routine, last year my morning routine was chaotic a big massive rush, like I would open my eyes and just feel like I had already started my day behind and late. I use to jump out of bed chuck on some clothes, grab some tea and toast and sit at my desk with it in hand. I didn’t realise that these action were actually telling me something, they were secretively tell me that I didn’t have time for myself, that from the moment my eyes opened I should be working. So before new years 2021 I decided to create a new morning routine something I would enjoyed, and I made it a point to get up earlier so that I wasn’t chasing my tail anymore, and could make time for myself everyday first thing.
Your routine may look different but what my routine looks like is I set my alarm for 6 and put it away on my desk so I have to get out of bed to turn it off. I usually get back into bed turn the bedside lamp and sit up, I can do anything on my phone but no Instagram or anything linked to work. I give myself 10 to 20 minutes to wake up properly, then I get dressed into comfy active wear to do 20 to 35 mins of yoga. I then jump in the shower get dress properly make breakfast but now, I actually have time to decide what I want and cook it. I start work between 8 or 9 instead. But through this routine I’m reinforcing to myself kind of on subconscious level that my business can wait my work can wait I’m quite literally put my self first. It’s not selfish or self-centred to put yourself first, I mean I’m get up earlier to make time. See it as more prioritising yourself again, honestly I would recommend you give it a go tomorrow morning it’s a game changer. You don’t have to get up at the same time but give yourself at least a couple hours to yourself. I’m not a morning person by any means but since having clear active I look forward to it! I have hit days when your not feeling it for the most part I power through and feel better for it, but sometime you haven’t got the strength to do that on those morning I don’t force myself to do yoga or anything but I do still however try and wake up earlier. Healthy boundaries give you structure and this one also provides a calmness that I can’t put into words, but trust me try it out if it doesn’t help no hard feelings!
Hobbies & Projects
So how do we create an identity that isn’t solely revolved around our business. This is when you should make sure you’ve got hobbies, we can all binge watch married at fight sight, which I ain’t gonna lie sometimes feels pretty good to do and didn’t do that too long ago. But hobbies helps us form and express who we are and has nothing to do with your business. Don’t feel the need to share it with your followers – I’ll discussed boundaries around social media next. But hobbies are something you enjoy and that you want to do, I found myself disconnected from a previous, I went from someone who loved dancing and ballet to not doing anything active for 7 or 8 years. I’ve realised that I’m a fairly lazy person, I enjoy lounging around but I also still enjoy moving my body, just school gave a bad representation of exercise and running outside, group sports even gyms aren’t really my thing. So started doing yoga surprise surprise in lockdown! I swear if you didn’t get engaged, buy a dog or start a new hobby you didn’t do lockdown right. Anyway I also work out a specific body part like abs, glutes, legs with small at home equipment and walk the dog.
It’s good to get into practise to keep checking in with yourself, have you gone out the house, have you done something you wanted this week, are you eating healthy. Making sure you take care of yourself in all aspects of your personal life is something we should all be doing. But specially if you’ve had a full on week, make sure your not letting your own wellbeing be effected by it. One of my other suggestion that has helped me is by introducing a few new hobbies, I found that hobbies take your mind of think about your business. When I’m working up a sweat I definitely not thinking about my website traffic and bounce back rates are. Our thoughts really do make you who you are. And hobbies are a great way to stop your mind from constantly think about work and focuses your time and attention on something else. Please don’t take way from this that you shouldn’t just chill and watch Netflix cause believe I do! But I make sure I have other things to occupy my time with and give myself a greater senses of an identity away from my business. If all you do is work and watch Netflix it’s easy to feel like all you ever do is work. Hobbies provide you with new experience and provides you with other interests and facets to your identity.
You can try selecting a hobby’s from a few of the following category so you could start doing something active to do, or an activity outdoors, remember to stay social, learn a new skill through an online course. Do something creative, creativity doesn’t have to be drawing or painting. Creativity could be shown through cooking, DIY furniture or even knitting. As long as you picking something that your actually enjoy doing.
Making Social Media Boundaries
So when you start your business you might not of realised that you branded your self as a personal brand. If you need help to know whether you a personal brand or business brand go listen to >>episode 008<<. With social media today most personal brands are showing up daily and being very transparent online, it’s refreshing and helps your people to see your trust worthy. However, if you find it difficult to show up online and or you shared something previously now you wish you hadn’t know is the time to create some boundaries. Yes you should have social media boundaries with who you are and your business.
So a couple years back I posed a picture of me and my boyfriend because it was our anniversary I posed this on business account. I didn’t real think about it but I should of asked him if he actually minded about his face being on that account. It’s a public account which mean anyone can see the feed without following me and I have a lot of people on there that I don’t know. Know he didn’t mind when I bought it up that maybe I should of but, that could of gone differently and it didn’t sit right with me. So I made some boundaries that I felt comfortable with. So if you want to join me grab a pen and paper and start making your social media boundary list of things your happy to share, post talk about a few on this list could be I’m happy to share my wins and failures within my business. I’m happy to show my face I’m happy to show my dog. If I’m posting a picture with a friendly or family member I’ll always ask before assuming. I’m happy to share with my followers that I’m dyslexic, I’m happy to share what book I’m reading, I’m happy to share my age etc. I’m happy to share more personal activities and aspect of my day in story mode.
Now go grab another piece of paper and write down the things you aren’t prepared to share online. It might amaze you that even the people you feel pretty close to and follow online you don’t actually know everything. So a few things on my list are I’m not going to share the outside of my house for safety reasons. I’m not going to share much about my personal relationship. I’m not going to share my religious views. I’m not going to share all my personal interests and hobbies. Now it’s your tern to make your own list and make sure you stick to the boundaries you’ve set.
Your Working Hour Boundaries & Environment
When working for yourself your responsible for everything and although your probably capable setting your own hours, we can all get caught up from time to time and become workaholic! I’m not saying that if your business is in the lead up to something big like a launch etc. That you shouldn’t work more hours, but long working days should become your new norm. Because you can set the hour it’s easily to either do to little or to much, usually it’s the later. You also have flexibility around what time of the day you prefer to work whether that’s you starting to work at 7 till 11 and then have a long break in the middle of the day and not getting back to it till 3 to 7. It’s up to you. But here the biggie you shouldn’t be working more than the average 9 to 5 or 8 hours a day. Actually working 5 hours a day sometime pushes you to be more productive and prioritise task more efficiently. But the second thing if you service based business making sure your clients are well aware about your working hours so that you’re not being constantly interrupting with work emails in you free time.
I’ve currently been reading The 4 Hours Work Week and it’s true we something’s fill our days with unnecessary tasks kind of like fluff, we do this to just pad out our days. So we work till 5 and feel like we deserve to finished. But if we really thinking about it every office job out there can’t take the exact amount of time to get it done. So my solution is making sure you are priorities tasks, that is far better than counting the hours. I gave my self two tasks today Write this podcast episode and plan 12 reels for Instagram. That’s it once those two things are done I’m calling it a day, if I don’t complete them by 5 then stop. Now if I finished them earlier doesn’t mean I’ll definitely stop because I’ll usually move onto annoying admin bits to do but I’ve got the main two things completed.
Also just because you’re your own boss, doesn’t mean you can’t take time off! Remember to actually book time of in advance, how a normal business would. Date it off so that you can get what you need do to take that day off, and to actually plan something in advance.
The next thing isn’t just about the amount of hours your working, it’s all about where do you work. What does you workspace look like, and the most important question where is it in relationship to your relaxing area. Unfortunately mine is in my bedroom however, it’s slightly detached away from my bed facing away from it towards the wall and in a little alcove bit. So I try to keep these to space separate so that I don’t I can separate my personal relaxing time with my desk/ working time. Yes healthy boundaries do extend to your relaxing and working space too!
Wrapping up all the Healthy boundaries
We have come to a close ladies and gentleman, I hope you’ve taken away how crucial it is to make sure you start putting your needs first again. I’ve provided you with actionable steps to implement today. In the hopes you can rebuild a healthier personal identity and still run and own your business. We’ve covered how to separate your identity with work through developing other skills by taking up new hobbies. We looked at how to create your own list of personal boundaries for social media to have some kind of privacy and understanding with others and what you feel comfortable sharing daily. Plus we discovered why you should be keeping track on the amount of hours your doing in a day. These steps will support you and not let you feel so affected when your business is having a slow month. Stay focused on other tasks and not let you’re thought be all consuming of your business. Remember to reinforcing daily you and your personal needs are priority and work is second. To also realise that actually your business success is your business success and you should be proud of, but it doesn’t make you. Same goes for your failure in your business failures doesn’t break you or lower your self-worth or values as a person, it just means there is room and time for improvement! I really hope you start implement these healthy boundaries, especially the morning routine I would really recommend for those of you struggling.
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