Staying Sane By Shifting Gears

stay-saneOne of the things I’m most proud of with my business has been my ability to create and maintain a livable and profitable life-work balance. Since 2006, when my daughter was born, I’ve structured my company around a 3-4 day workweek where I take Fridays and/or Mondays off, in addition to the regular weekend, so that I can care for my family and myself in a way that feels great.

Plus, having just 3-4 days of work helps me be more productive and effective when I actually am working, not only because I have a finite number of hours to get things done, but also because I really value my downtime so it’s important for me to ensure that I get all I need.

Of course, there are times when I’ve got a big project coming up or a live event to plan when I’ll allow myself to change my rules and tip the scales more toward work than I normally do. That’s when I’ll step into a mode where I’m hyper-focused on preparing for the task ahead so I’ll spend way more time checking emails, for example, because it’s important for me to keep my inbox cleared out and organized. I’ll check work emails on the weekends and late at night to stay on top of things, with the intention that it’s just a temporary allowance.

However, what I often find is that once I’m in that go-go-go mode where I’m working on my days off and focusing on business at times I usually don’t, it’s tough for me to revert back to my normal life-work balance even after the project is over.

It’s kind of like when you’re going really fast on a bike and even though you pull your feet away and stop pumping your legs, the bike’s momentum keeps it moving and the pedals are still rotating like crazy, so you have to shift gears and apply the brakes to get back to a normal, controlled pace.

What I’ve learned throughout the years is to stay aware and recognize when that’s happening so I can consciously step back and purposefully recalibrate things to my regular speed. This is how I’m able to maintain boundaries around my life-work balance, and keep my sanity on this entrepreneurial journey when it gets to be roller coaster-y from time to time.

So much of what we do as heart-centered entrepreneurs to serve our clients depends on our ability to also serve ourselves. I know you’ve heard it before, but if you can’t take care of yourself, there’s no way you can properly take care of other people. Maintain the life-work balance that is best for you as much as you can, and when you need to shift into high gear for a bit, stay conscious of your boundaries and be sure to get back to them as soon as your able. You’ll thank yourself for it, and so will your Ideal Clients.

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