Building a Business Shouldn't Require You Stop Having a Life Ironically, many entrepreneurs freed themselves from day jobs only to enslave themselves to their startups.
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There's a trend that's been growing for some time now. You see it when you log onto social media. You've watched YouTube videos about it. You've probably heard your entrepreneur friends talking about it. This interesting new business mentality is the 24/7-never-stop "hustling" no-matter-what mentality.
Spending excessively long hours working on your business has become the new badge of honor. You're not considered a true entrepreneur unless you work until you drop. You see entrepreneurs bragging about working at 3 a.m. and working all weekend. You hear them say they have no time for anything but business-related tasks.
If you buy into this trend you will eventually hate your business. Here are a few points to consider when it comes to business-life balance.
Your business shouldn't eclipse your life.
I don't know about you, but I built a business to take control of my life. Most of us are building a business to give us freedom and control of our life. We want an income that allows us to do whatever we want in life without worrying about financial security. The concepts of the Four-Hour Work Week might not be exactly what we're looking for, but it's pretty darn close. We want to build a scalable business that gives us flexibility.
It's important to work a little longer or harder as you build a business, but only within the proper business-life balance. There are consequences when the balance shifts too far towards business. Many relationships have ended because entrepreneurs focused on business neglected their partner. Families have fallen apart because an entrepreneur didn't have the right balance.
Get very honest with yourself about imbalance in your business/life right and make any necessary changes.
There's a smarter way to build.
We live in an incredible era. We have tools, technology, software, access and information to help our business-building efforts. When it comes to finding and securing customers, there are more than three billion daily users of the internet. Marketing to those customers is cheap when you take advantage of strategies such as social media marketing.
With what's available to entrepreneurs today, there's no need to hustle 24/7. In fact, it can work against you. Many studies find you don't get more done by working longer hours. At a certain point, you become less productive and produce lower quality work. Most of those entrepreneurs bragging about all the long hours they're putting in are only doing it for social recognition purposes.
Use the tools and access we have today to grow your business faster with fewer work hours. Create a plan and schedule to balance business and your life. If you don't know how to use the tools or create this kind of schedule, hire a professional to help you. An impartial set of eyes evaluating your business could be the key to reaching your next growth level in a balanced way.
Give priority to what matters most.
In life, people are far more important than business. Whatever those things are to you that matter, always give them the priority. You have family and other obligations. Think about the future. Years from now, will you be happy you built a successful business but neglected or hurt someone you love?
The 24/7 hustle mentality sounds exciting and is commonly accepted these days, but entrepreneurs don't follow -- they lead. Be a leader of the new movement of entrepreneurs building thriving business while also enjoying life to the fullest. Let our example teach the all-day hustlers there's a different way.
It tempting to fit in and conform. It's common to try doing what everyone else is doing. It's easier to make business the exclusive focus but that is not why we became entrepreneurs and it won't lead to long term success. Build a business you love while enjoying all the benefits of life. Build a lifestyle business that frees you. Always put the "life" part first.