Achieving balance while building a business is very challenging. The rule of thumb when starting and growing a business is that you will work much, much too hard in the initial stages. It’s better to come to terms with that reality going in, make your peace with it, and just buckle down and put in the effort required to get the business up and running.
If you are constantly beating yourself up because you are not living the perfect balanced life featured on the magazine covers, you are not helping the cause. Those ideal versions of life are mostly fantasies or one-in-a-million stories.
Starting and building a business, especially in the initial stages, requires huge amounts of time, energy and focus. It is important to understand that going in. It is very important that those important to you, those in your support network, understand that going in. If you and those around you are not fully in tune with the resource, time and energy requirements of starting and building a business, the psychic and emotional tolls that ensue can destroy your business, your relationships and your life.
I will say this again: Starting a building a business, especially in the initial stages, requires huge amounts of time, energy and focus. Don’t diminish any of those three by fighting a running battle with yourself or those around you regarding this issue.
Having said all of that, it is important to carve out some moments for yourself and for your life on a regular basis, even in the early days of starting your business. Make a point of taking a few minutes to do something just for you and something just for those around you. Have a plan, and stick to it, of gradually increasing those moments as the business gets up on its feet.
Once your business is operational, things change. No business model is valid if it is based on heroic effort by those involved. If the only way your business works is if you neglect yourself, those around you and your life, then the business model is flawed and it is doomed to failure in the mid- to long-term. Once your business is operational, you must be in balance or the business will fail; it’s only a matter of time. You simply can’t sustain an unbalanced energy and time investment in a business at the cost of all other aspects of your life. It will eventually kill the business, kill your life or kill you. For a business to be sustainable, you, and everyone else associated with the business, must be in a reasonable state of life/work balance.
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