⌚ 4 min read
If you’ve been running a business or putting work into your side hustle for longer than a couple of months, you’ve probably realized a couple of things:
Despite these two realizations, many entrepreneurs become stuck in a cycle of pushing themselves beyond their capabilities, saying yes to everything, and working around the clock in order to attain faster, bigger, and better profits.
Of course, we’re not saying you shouldn’t work hard and aim to make your company a success. But if it comes at the price of your health and motivation, eventually the financials will suffer as well.
Growing your business and actually enjoying it is what we’re shooting for. Crashing and burning… not so much.
As always, that’s easier said than done. However, if you can consistently align your energies in the following four areas, you will find your own balanced flow with which you’ll navigate through business with less stress, more determination, and, most importantly, more happiness.
V A L U E S
When launching a business, we often get so caught up in making sure everything is running smoothly that we forget who we are and why we’re doing all of it in the first place. And trust us, nothing can make you feel more unhappy than losing your sense of purpose.
But when we have a clear sense of our core beliefs and values, it’s easier to remember our motivation for doing what we’re doing. Aligning both big and small decisions with your values ensures that you will stay on track with your purpose and won’t dig yourself into a hole where you’re being drained by your business.
To figure out your values, think about what success means to you. When you dig deep, you’ll see that it’s often not about the money but rather the feelings and freedoms you’ll be able to experience. For example, if success means more time with your family, your values (and subsequently business decisions) should align with that definition and lead you to create a climate where you’re able to reach those family-oriented goals.
P R O M I S E S
Whatever it is you’re selling, you’ve promised something in exchange for your customer’s money. This goes beyond the features of a product or service, but rather encompasses the results, quality, and speed your customers expect.
This is an area that often suffers when you work in a state of overwhelm: taking on too much dwindles the quality your business offers. To align your energy, take a realistic look at how you’re performing when it comes to your promises.
If you’ve been making unrealistic promises, it’s time to take a step back and truthfully survey where you’re taking on too much and what you can cut out. And that leads us to...
P R I O R I T I E S
Hate to break it to you, but not everything is a priority (even though you think it is!). If you’re constantly in a state of urgency, your satisfaction and happiness levels will take a guaranteed nose dive.
To get a handle on what truly matters most, list out everything you’re making a priority and be honest with yourself if you’re really the only one that can do said priority (you’ll find that you aren’t). For other responsibilities, determine if they’re absolutely necessary. Ask yourself what would happen if that task was deleted? More often than not, the answer isn’t all that dramatic, meaning delete it!
On the other hand, if you find that you’re not able to meet your actual priorities, audit your time and find what is siphoning it. As an entrepreneur, you have the freedom of living your life according to your own rules - accept that sometimes redefining those rules is necessary.
R I S K S
We’ll take a wild guess and say that if you’re an entrepreneur, an appetite for risk is ingrained in your personality. A big factor of what motivates and pushes you forward are the endless possibilities risks bring.
But if you find yourself constantly overwhelmed in the day-to-day of running a business, you are missing out on the big picture and all of the opportunities that are out there. Creativity plummets and growth potential is lost when we stop taking chances.
Pull yourself out of your own head once in a while and look at everything you’re doing with a fresh perspective. Ask what if. Explore those ideas that seem just a little too crazy to work. Question everything.
If happiness was easy to define, someone would already be bottling and selling it! But it’s not. And it varies greatly by the individual and, in this case, business. However, by aligning your values, determining what promises you can make and keep, setting your priorities straight, and taking risks, you will be on the way to creating a happy business life for yourself.