Virtual greetings! I’m Paige from Little Nostalgia, and I’m excited to be posting here today.
Since I quit my day job last November and became self-employed, it’s been hard to stay on top of everything my business needs, while also keeping the house from falling into squalor, AND having some sort of personal life. Some days I totally have my act together and get 50 things done before lunch, but other times I slide off the wagon and get caught up in a Hoarders marathon. Being my own boss is great, but it can be hard to find discipline when I’m only accountable to myself.
|Calendar, $18, Etsy|
That being said, the pendulum of balance swings pretty wildly around here. I still haven’t figured out a foolproof plan or how to clone myself, but there are a few tricks I’ve learned to keep everything flowing.
1. Follow a semi-regular schedule. When I got my first taste of professional freedom, I just skipped through the metaphorical meadow, doing whatever the heck I wanted all day long. Bad plan. These days I do my computer-based items first, then I work on assembling orders and/or DIY projects, and I save my “leaving the house” activities, including any socializing, for the afternoon. This gives me a sense of routine, but has enough flexibility that I don’t get bored.
2. Have a detailed to-do list. If you wear many hats, have a to do list that reflects that. Mine is a weekly list that’s divided into four categories: my main Etsy shop, my secondary Etsy shop, my blog, and life in general. Having everything on the same piece of paper helps SO much, plus it’s a good way to see what area of your life needs more attention that week.
|To-do printable, $5, Etsy|
3. Say no, and say it whenever you need to. Part of finding balance is not overextending yourself. Whether it’s a last-minute order, or a friend who wants you to hang out in her new pool in the middle of the day, if you don’t have time, then you don’t have time! And that’s fine. Everyone else has a lot going on, too, and chances are, they’ll totally understand.
4. Have an accountability buddy. Like I said before, being accountable to myself can lead to bad TV marathons and eating Doritos. I’ve started telling my husband about assorted business tasks (usually things I hate doing, like bookkeeping), and he asks about my progress every couple of days. You can use your significant other, a friend, a fellow businessperson--anybody who will help keep you on track with their questions.