Running your own business can be stressful, but there are ways to help you keep your cool
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, working from home was the norm for many entrepreneurs, especially in the early days of your business. After all, from a financial point of view, setting up operations from home makes the most sense, eradicating the needs for travel costs, expensive equipment, and renting or buying an office space.
However, anyone who has tried to run their business from home knows that this can come with its own set of unique challenges. For one, the line between work hours and downtime can easily become blurred, and your wellbeing can suffer under the pressure of wanting to be there for your clients twenty four hours a day, seven days a week.
Thankfully, we’re here to help. Here are some key ways to reduce stress as a home-based business owner.
Create a schedule
This works both ways. On the one hand, don’t be tempted to keep hitting that snooze button, take long lunches, or call it a day at 3pm just because no one is leaning over your shoulder monitoring your every move. However, on the other hand, you should also avoid the pressure of working longer hours than you would in the office.
Your workday should still have a clear beginning and end, even when you’re at home. Creating a schedule allows you to be productive without pushing yourself too hard, helping you stay in control of your time.
Get rid of bad clients
When you first start a business, the temptation is to say yes to every opportunity that comes your way. After all, you have costs to cover and a profit to make. But there comes a point when, no matter how big the pay cheque, it simply isn’t worth it if the toll on your mental wellbeing is too great.
If you have clients who don’t respect your working hours, or who ask too much from you, or who don’t treat you with respect, then it’s probably best to let them go and seek out other opportunities.
Set your boundaries
Similarly, it’s important to set parameters with all your clients so they know when you can and cannot be reached. Of course, you can always make exceptions in case of an emergency, but providing clear office hours means clients won’t expect you to be at their beck and call anytime, anywhere.
And this isn’t just a rule that applies to clients. Let your family and friends know your office hours too so they don’t feel obliged to pop by for a visit or ask for a favour just because they know you’re at home.
Create the right environment
Creating a designated space for your home office will help you maintain the all important separation between work life and family life. If possible, set up your office in a room you don’t use often for any other reason, such as a guest bedroom. That way, at the end of the day, you can simply shut the door and leave work behind you until you clock in again.
Comfort is key when it comes to your home office. Invest in high quality, supportive furniture that promotes a good posture, and remember to take regular breaks for a stretch or walk in order to help you stay focused and avoid any aches and pains.