Many of my business clients start with me in an exhausted state. They went into business excited about the concept and the freedom they envisioned. And instead, they ended up feeling worn out, stressed out, and frustrated.
The greatest joy for me is helping them regain their health and happiness.
If you are feeling unhappy and exhausted in your business, please consider these steps to help you regain your joy: (And if you don’t feel this way, count your blessings, and please pass this on to a friend who is feeling this way)
Step One: Come back to your vision.
When you started your business, you had a vision for what you wanted your life and business to look like.
Come back to that vision and write it out. Start with regular work hours, healthy vacation time, and ways you want to take care of yourself and your relationships. And then describe your ideal business- how your assistant/ team works with you, what you do each day, realistic salary and profits, etc.
We get where we want to be much faster when we are clear with where we want to be!
Step Two: Identify where you are off track.
Take 30 minutes, in quiet solitude, to assess what’s going well and what’s not going well. What is impeding your larger vision?
Is your assistant or team doing great work?
Are your systems clear and in writing?
Is your focus clear and do you delegate in areas that drain you, that you dislike, that you aren’t good at doing, or that you just don’t have time for?
Do you take enough time off to take good care of yourself and get your business off your mind?
Where else might you be off track?
Step Three: Assess what you need to let go of.
I include this step because getting to the next level in your business, and getting your life back, always requires “letting go” of something. Suffering occurs to teach us something.
What is the lesson to learn? What do you need to let go of?
Is it micromanaging employees? This doesn’t work because they feel stifled, unable to grow themselves, and often become terrified of making mistakes. And it piles on extra work, and extra stress, for you.
Is it expecting perfection from yourself or others? This doesn’t work because nobody is perfect. Unrealistic expectations creates anxiety and keeps everyone chronically frustrated.
Is it expecting people to remember their responsibilities when they are not in writing? Frustration often is a sign that something is misunderstood. The best way to avoid misunderstandings is to have job descriptions, communication systems, accountability measures, and pretty much everything that occurs in your business, in writing and available for all to see.
Or do you first need to let go of something else?
Step Four: Prioritize what you will tackle first.
Focusing on too many problems at once is paralyzing and impedes progress. Identify ONE obstacle and give yourself 2-3 months to tackle that one first.
Know that you are not alone. Overwhelm and exhaustion is the #1 problem I see in entrepreneurs.
Celebrate the completion of every baby step in the direction of your larger vision.
Step Five: Find compassion for yourself and ask for help if it’s needed.
Life is too darn short to stay stuck in misery. No business, truly, is worth that.
The ultimate goal here is to tackle the obstacles in a manageable, clear manner and to bring compassion and passion back into your life. Compassion includes good self-care and adequate time away from your business to live your values. The passion piece is restored when you get back to doing what you truly love in your business.
If this feels too overwhelming to do on your own, and it often does, please reach out to someone for help. You have worked hard and you deserve it.